Illinois Bicentennial

Library of Congress

The Illinois State Historical Society wants to see a particular portrait of Abraham Lincoln -- before he was president -- in every courthouse in Illinois. The Society hopes to make that happen during the state's Bicentennial year. 

Society Executive Director William Furry said Lincoln is an iconic figure, particularly in Illinois, and courthouses are especially appropriate spots to hang his picture.

Guy Stephens/WNIJ

Today is the beginning of Illinois’s year-long bicentennial celebration. Counties and municipalities across the state read special proclamations and raised an Illinois Bicentennial Flag.

A couple of dozen people gathered next to the flagpole in front of the DeKalb County Courthouse in Sycamore to hear County Chairman Mark Pietrowski read a letter from State Rep. Bob Pritchard, R-Hinckley, on the significance of the anniversary.

TheNerdPatrol/Flickr

Several breweries from across the state will compete during a new attraction at this year's Illinois State Fair. 

The winning beer will be known as the Official Bicentennial Craft Brew.  And only one of 18 participating breweries will get to make it, after fairgoers cast their votes during opening weekend.