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Wildfire closes part of Pere Marquette State Park

November 19, 2011 at 09:47 AM

Prairie State Outdoors

A wildfire burned 450 to 500 acres of timber in Pere Marquette State Park near Grafton Thursday.

The burned section of the park is closed to hunting and other activities until further notice.

No injuries were reported and no structures were damaged by the fire that was discovered early Thursday afternoon.

Six regional fire departments and fire protection districts worked with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to contain the fire in the wooded, rugged terrain on the eastern edge of Pere Marquette State Park and on adjacent private property. 

The burned acreage normally is open for hunting including during firearm deer season.

Site superintendent Chris Hespen said the rest of the park, including the lodge, campground and visitor center remain open.

DNR Conservation Police and other staff are working with local fire officials to find the cause of the fire and determine the amount of damage sustained. 

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