2017 Fort de Chartres State Historic Site Special Events

at  Fort de Chartres State Historic Site, at 1350 IL Route 155, 4 miles west of Prairie du Rocher.


April Trade Faire

Saturday and Sunday, April 1 & 2, 2017

Fort de Chartres Colonial Trade Faire and Musket & Rifle Frolic

Saturday, April 1, 10 AM-5 PM

Sunday, April 2, 10 AM-3 PM

The Colonial Trade Faire is a JURIED living history event for participants depicting the Illinois Country ca. 1750-1790.

Chasseurs du Datchurat



The Trade Faire, which features costumed historic interpreters, shooting matches, and period games. Craftspeople and merchants will sell reproduction period goods. The Colonial Trade Faire is hosted by the Chasseurs du Datchurat, a group that re-enacts the lives and skills of longhunters, professional hide hunters who would routinely embark on grand hunts lasting months and sometimes more than a year. The event is open and free to general public.

For more information about this event or how to register, For more information on how to register for this event, contact (618) 284-7230 or email lesamisdufortdechartres@gmail.com.


Kids’ Day 2016 Rope Making EJ

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Kids’ Day-Saturday, May 6, 10 AM-4 PM

Kids’ Day 2017 Update, May 1: Today the flood gates in Prairie du Rocher will be closed due to the recent heavy rains and resulting area river flooding and upcoming river crests. PLEASE NOTE the positive news- there is NO current threat for evacuation. But as a result of the flood gate closures, Les Amis will have to cancel our Kids’ Day event in 2017 for now but we invite families join us June 3 & 4, for the historic 47th Annual June Rendezvous! IF the Kids’ Day event is able to be rescheduled this summer or fall, we will announce a new date later month. In the meantime, watch this FB page and the Fort’s website for the June Rendezvous schedule of events. We hope to see you and your families at the Rendezvous!

Kids’ Day features 18th century games, contests and crafts for children. FREE to the general public.

Volunteer Interpreters will be on site to allow kids their hand at 18th century rope making, archery, games and other activities. Kids can enlist to be a Fort de Chartres French Marine and can take a chance at becoming King or Queen by finding the bean in the Kings cake! All children must be accompanied by a responsible adult at all times. Concessions will be available for sale throughout the day. The event is open and free to general public.


2015 June Rendezvous

Saturday & Sunday, June 3 & June 4, 2017

The 47th Annual Fort de Chartres June Rendezvous

Saturday, June 3, 10 AM-5 PM

Sunday, June 4, 10 AM-5 PM

11 x 17 June Rendezvous Poster created by Lopata Design

The two-day popular annual Rendezvous, held the first weekend in June, features shooting competitions, military drills, dancing, music, food, and traders of eighteenth-century-style goods.

The boom of cannons, the smell of campfires and a parade of colorful uniforms will transport visitors back to the 1700s on June 3 and 4 at Fort de Chartres State Historic Site’s annual Rendezvous, the largest gathering of its kind anywhere in the Midwest, attracting many thousands to the site during this 2 day special event. Click on the June Rendezvous page located on this website for event information and updates!

The Rendezvous features 1700s military units, traditional craft demonstrations, period music and dancing, black powder shooting events and cannon firings – all from the time when France controlled what is now Illinois. Visitors can try their hand at throwing a tomahawk, buy hand-made crafts, learn about French kitchen gardens, and watch swordsmen duel, taste delicious food and much more. This event is hosted by Les Coureurs des Bois de Fort de Chartres and sponsored by Les Amis du Fort de Chartres, with additional site support from the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency.

The event is open and free to general public with special event parking for this event just $5 a car. Donations welcomed.


Jennifer & Jason Duensing Summer Ball 2016

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Friends of the Fort Summer Ball  

Saturday, July 22, 7 PM-10 PM

@ Prairie du Rocher American Legion, located at 509 Henry St., Prairie du Rocher, Illinois.

Suggested donation of $20 a person and all funds raised will go directly to the not-for-profit support organization, Les Amis du Fort de Chartres, which supports improvement projects at Fort de Chartres State Historical Site.

Les Amis du Fort de Chartres is hosting the fundraising event “Friends of the Fort Summer Ball”.  Eighteenth century music and dance calling will be provided by a live band. Period dress encouraged but not required.. Food is allowed to be brought in but alcohol must be purchased at the bar. This event is open to all. Let’s gather together for some midsummer fun, have a great time while supporting our Fort.


2016 Cannon School

Saturday & Sunday, September 9 & 10

Fort de Chartres Muzzle Loading Black Powder Artillery Safety School

Saturday, September 9, 10 AM-4 PM

Sunday, September 10, 10 AM-12 PM

Artillery Re-enactors participate in yearly safety training and demonstrate live cannon firing.

Training runs 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM on Saturday and live firing demonstrations will be held on Sunday from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Hosted by the French Colonial Artillery from the Holy Family Militia. For more information on how to register for this event, contact (618) 284-7230 or email lesamisdufortdechartres@gmail.com.


F & I 2016 EJ

Saturday & Sunday, October 14 & 15

Fort de Chartres French & Indian War Encampment

Saturday, October 14, 10 AM-4 PM

Sunday, October 15, 10 AM-2 PM

1750s historically dressed Native American, soldier, militia, and camp follower re-enactors participate in everyday camp activities and military drills.


Saturday, October 21, 2017

World War II Day at Fort de Chartres

Saturday, October 21, 10 AM-4 PM

The day’s free and open to the general public educational World War II encampment event will display the equipment of area reenactors covering a variety of aspects of history’s largest conflict. A ceremony honoring the area’s veterans from all of America’s engagements will be held. A simulated battle will be held with props such as tank obstacles and wall sections between American and German forces. Food and refreshments will be available. The event is open to the general public.


Winter Rendezvous 2016

Saturday & Sunday, November 4 & 5

Fort de Chartres Winter Rendezvous & Woodswalk

Saturday, November 4, 10 AM-5 PM

Sunday, November 5, 10 AM-3PM

This event features 18th and early 19th century camp life and re-enactors who participate in a muzzleloader woods walk shooting competition.

Fort de Chartres State Historic Site presents a weekend of colorful clothing, hand-made crafts, period music and delicious food when the annual Winter Rendezvous returns November 5 &6.

Soldiers, trappers, traders and Native Americans (as portrayed by historic re-enactors) will gather at the rendezvous. They’ll trade goods, buy supplies, and some will take part in a shooting contest that requires them to walk through the woods and fire flintlocks at pop-up targets.

The rendezvous is fun both for the participants demonstrating frontier life from 1700 to1820 and for visitors spending an autumn day wandering among the tents, campfires and historic French colonial fort. The event is open and free to the general public.   This event is hosted by Les Coureurs des Bois de Fort de Chartres and sponsored by Les Amis du Fort de Chartres.


La Guiannee at Fort de Chartres

Saturday, December 31, 2017

La Guiannee at Fort de Chartres

Saturday, December 31, 7 PM-9 PM

The Prairie du Rocher La Guiannee visits the site to play period music and sing. 

In a traditional New Year’s Eve celebration dating back to 1722, the La Guiannee singers will visit houses and Fort de Chartres in the early French town of Prairie du Rocher and sing for the residents. As part of the tradition, the residents provide refreshments for the singers at each stop. It is cosponsored by Fort de Chartres and the Prairie du Rocher La Guiannee Society. The event is open and free to the general public.


A printed version of the 2017 Fort de Chartres Special Event Schedule


The not-for-profit all-volunteer support organization, Les Amis du Fort de Chartres, has agreed once again to sponsor the Fort de Chartres State Historic Site special events in 2017 and cover the event expenses that were previously covered by the state in an effort to keep the Fort and the surrounding area’s businesses vital and alive with activity during the state budget crisis. Les Amis was very grateful for all the donations given to our Les Amis du Fort de Chartres Special Events 2016 Giving Campaign, corporate gifts and individual donations allowed Les Amis to successfully sponsor last year’s Fort de Chartres special events. Les Amis is excited once again sponsor Fort de Chartres 2017 Special Events and we look forward to working with many of the Fort’s other support organizations, along with our special event donors, make sponsoring these events possible.

DONATE to our Les Amis du Fort de Chartres 2017 Special Event Events Giving Campaign!

For more information concerning Fort de Chartres 2017 Special Events contact the site at (618) 284-7230 or email lesamisdufortdechartres@gmail.com.


Les Amis du Fort de Chartres March Art de vivre (Art of life) Bake Oven Event

On March 25, 2017, at 10 a.m.to 3 p.m., as part of the Les Amis Art de vivre monthly presentation series, John Hancock will conduct a class and demonstration on the proper firing technique for the Fort’s eighteenth century reproduction stone bake oven. At this class, written materials will be provided for attendees and after completion of the class, attendees will receive a certification card allowing them to sign up for future opportunities to fire and use the oven while at the Fort. The fee for class materials will be $15 to cover the cost of class materials. There will be a break for lunch midday and afterwards return to the firing of the oven. Lunch is on one’s own. (Lisa’s is always a good option.)

Preregistration is required and class registration size limited to 10 and are due by March 18. Register here.