Please click on the Menu icon (located in the photo above) for a dropdown directory to access posts, local places to eat, shop, visit, ways to help out others in Southern Illinois, and more!

THANK YOU! A Slice of Southern Illinois is extremely honored and grateful to have been voted Runner Up in The Southern Illinoisan’s Reader’s Choice Awards Best Local Website Category for 2018. We appreciate the support of our local readers as well as those throughout the world. It is exciting and humbling to know that people in 24 different countries were reading the blog last calendar year.

Southern Illinois has always been a special place to me. My parents met while at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. As a child, my family made many trips from Marion county down to campus and the surrounding communities. I have many fond memories of these trips. Southern Illinois was a happy place for my family

The Student Center, Altgeld, and Thompson Woods were all familiar before I ever even moved to Jackson county to attend college. My dad had worked at the SIU Farms as a college student. He loved to drive the entire perimeter of campus and the farms to view and changes since his graduation.

When I had to collect and preserve leaves for sophomore biology class, my parents rushed me to Thompson Woods. They explained that because of the climate in Southern Illinois, many species flourish here.

Family trips were not limited to SIU. Bald Knob Cross, Blueberry Hill, Giant City State Park, The Natural Bridge at Pomona, and even a little nutrition store on the north end of Carbondale with frozen yogurt were destinations. Other times, we traveled to Garden of the Gods, Pounds Hollow, or Cave in Rock. As part of S.I.D.G.A. (Southern Illinois Dairy Goat Association,) we traveled to meetings and shows from Forbes State Park to Dixon Springs State Park and Murphysboro to Broughton and Carmi.

Food has played an integral part in many fond memories in Southern Illinois. Growing up in South Central Illinois, my parents had a huge garden. Our family canned and froze many things that we grew including tomato juice and grape juice from the little arbor. Dilly Beans were one of my mom’s specialties. My mom was very creative and cooked many things. Actually, dad was also a good cook. We had homemade noodles, pies and cakes from scratch, Swedish tea rings, and more. It’s no accident that I like to play in the kitchen.

Since my brother and I could not tolerate cow’s milk as children, we raised dairy goats. Jeanette, a fiesty yearling that pulled me through the grass at the Marion County Fairgrounds in my little white show clothes, was my first 4-H project. My dad built a small barn and pasture for our goats. (I “helped” him…) Not only were dairy goats one of my 4-H projects for all eleven years, they were part of our family. We would sometimes take turns making butter with the antique butter churn. My parents also made a mild, soft cheese and some of the best homemade ice cream ever from goat’s milk. (I liked to try to sneak the cream off the top…) We also had a hen house and fairly large fenced chicken yard so that the chickens could freely roam about. We rarely went without fresh eggs.

I grew up with many family picnics, wonderful dinners and reunions with family, and fellowship with church family. There were unique and sometimes quirky places we would visit to eat. Some still exist, and sadly, some do not.

In 2016, I started this blog in hopes of helping others discover the things that make Southern Illinois special. For me, it is also a way to honor my parents and the sense of adventure they instilled in me as a child. I hope to pass this on to my children as they are part of this venture. There are many wonderful things to experience from I-70 in South Central Illinois to the tip of Southernmost Illinois. I am honored to share them and food inspired by local ingredients, people, and events with locals and people from around the world.

By 2017, I had created the ASOSI app to accompany the blog and serve as a tool for locals and tourists to discovering some of Southern Illinois’ local treasures, such as locally-owned eateries and natural wonders.


ASOSI is available for free download in the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store by iGenapps.


You are here 😀 The Blog is this website which includes a variety of blog posts. Some a recipes, some events, and others memories tied to Southern Illinois. The content may be a diverse as the people and the land…

Facebook Page

The Facebook page is likely to have more shared items related to Southern Illinois that may not make the website/app.

Info & Misc.–subsections:


You are here. 😀

*Help Others/Eat & More to Help
There is a section called “Eat & More to Help” under the “Info and Misc” icon on the ASOSI app and the A Slice of Southern Illinois webpage. This is where local (verifiable) fundraisers and benefits, when known, are listed.

*Herrin Rock Café

A Facebook page for foodies…

Slices of Southern Illinois

A peek at some of the greeting cards featuring images from the blog as well as unique gifts previously sold. Items tend to center around entertaining, eating , and quality time between friends and family.

A limited variety of photo digital downloads are now available on Etsy at:


Some images from the blog are also available to order on apparel, household, and gift items through Threadless at:



Locally owned restaurants, wineries, breweries, food trucks , food carts, etc.

Sites to See

Places that are worth a road trip to see in Southern Illinois. God certainly blessed us with a lot of beauty down here at this end of the state.


Although it would be impossible to list everything happening south of I-70, an effort is made to try to list some highlights. If you have an even or know of one to submit, please email it to: asliceofsouthernillinois@gmail.com

We cannot guarantee that all submissions will be published.


This is a list of known local farm stands, farmer’s markets, and small food stores in Southern Illinois. If you see that one is missing, please email:



This is a list of known locally owned unique (as in not part of a national chain) lodging opportunities in Southern Illinois. It may include cabins, Bed & Breakfasts, and resorts.

Local Shops

This is a list of known locally owned unique shops, stores, and some artisans that do not have store fronts but are in Southern Illinois.

Family Fun

Water parks, bowling alleys, miniature golf, and similar family fun may be found on this list.

Savings Slices

Links to savings and sales throughout Southern Illinois…roughly, from I-70 south to the Ohio River.