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in Ottawa, Illinois

A place that checks all the boxes, big and small

Gateway to Starved Rock Country

The term “best of both worlds” is a perfect description for Ottawa and LaSalle County.

Small-town charm? Family friendly? Outdoors paradise? LaSalle County has all of that. Big-city excitement? Easy access to major transportation? Situated on Interstate 80, and just 80 miles from Chicago, Ottawa checks those boxes, too.

Two navigable rivers, the Fox and the Illinois, meet in the middle of town and flow westward into Starved Rock State Park. More than 2 million people visit Starved Rock each year, to hike through its 18 canyons, climb its majestic bluffs, camp, fish, hunt, cruise the river or enjoy the fine on-site lodging and dining facilities.

Other state parks and recreation areas offer ample opportunities to enjoy horseback riding, zip-lining, rafting and kayaking. And Ottawa is also home to Skydive Chicago, the world’s largest skydiving resort.


Neighboring towns such as Streator – a.k.a. the “Quiet Surprise on the Prairie” and home of the Pipe Dreams pipe organ festival – add spice to the life of LaSalle County.

With a population of 18,000, Ottawa is the hub of an I-80 corridor that offers:

  • High quality of life with a lower cost of living
  • Strong public and private school systems
  • Thriving arts and entertainment communities
  • Easy access to Amtrak and international airports in Chicago and Peoria
  • World-class health care with OSF HealthCare Saint Elizabeth Medical Center in Ottawa and OSF Center for Health in Streator

Learn more about Ottawa, Streator, LaSalle County and Starved Rock Country. Photo credits: Pick Us Ottawa, Illinois. and Heritage Harbor

Note: Business hours and activities may have changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please call ahead or check websites for up-to-date info.

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