Welcome to Big Island, Illinois

Big Island is an oasis for outdoor activities and is conveniently located within the Quad Cities

Big Island is also defined by the historic Hennepin Canal and the Hennepin Parkway. So many of the distinctive features of the island are free and open to the public to enjoy. 

Big Island is located at the delta of the Rock River where it empties into the Mississippi River near Milan, Illinois. Once the biggest island on the Rock River it was suitably named Big Island. However it is not surrounded by water any longer. This change occurred when the slough that previously defined Big Island was filled in to make room for a highway system that now transverses the island. However, these geographical distinctions don't take away from the "island feel" of Big Island. It is indeed an oasis of abundant wildlife that is easily enjoyed by anyone who care take a short drive off the 'blue bridges' at Highway 67 and enter into a place where blue herons fish in shallow waters and water is the predominant feature.  


Being situated next to the scenic and user-friendly Hennepin Canal is one of Milan’s most valuable assets. It draws visitors to the region which brings many economic benefits. The paved and rustic trails, canal, and picnic shelter help to make this area a great place to live, work, and play! The more we can promote and increase the visibility of this backyard treasure, the more our businesses and community will benefit.

Randy Wlaskolich, BISAWPA President

Sign Up Form for Xstream Cleanup 
Invasive Species Removal and Trail Cleanup
Saturday, October 26, 2019, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.  

To help out at Xstream Cleanup, please fill out the form below with your name, e-mail address and t-shirt size. Meet at Hennepin Canal, Lock 31 Picnic Shelter, Big Island Parkway, Big Island/Milan IL. Bring a pruner and gloves (some will be provided).

Thank you for Volunteering for XStream Cleanup. Please meet us at Lock 31. We will have your t-shirt there. Please bring a pruner and gloves if possible (some will be provided).
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