The 21st Show

Rebecca Makkai, Author Of ‘The Great Believers’; Crowded Starved Rock; Illinois Outdoor Destinations


Rebecca Makkai

On the 21st: Lake Forest author Rebecca Makkai talks about her latest novel about the beginnings of the AIDS epidemic in Chicago, called 'The Great Believers.' Plus, we revisit our conversation about why Starved Rock State Park has gotten crowded, and provide some outdoor summer destinations.

Chicago was one of the last American cities to experience the beginnings of the AIDS epidemic. That time during the 1980s is the subject of a novel that’s just out this week, called 'The Great Believers.'

Its author, Rebecca Makkai, is from Lake Forest. Her Chicago launch for the book is next Tuesday at Women and Children First Bookstore.


Summer is finally here. And for many, this means it's the perfect weather to spend more time outdoors, especially now that school is out.

An option for that may be Starved Rock State Park, as it is for many people. Site superintendent Kerry Novak recently checked in on how many people visited Starved Rock since 2014, and the answer was 10.4 million.

All of that is taking a toll on the park’s physical landscape. We spoke with Kerry Novak and LaSalle News Tribune reporter Tom Collins about this back in May. 


If Starved Rock and even Matthiesen Park seem too crowded, there are plenty of other "off the beaten path" destinations. 

Nuno Ribeiro, an assistant professor in the Department of Recreation, Sport & Tourism at the University of Illinois, joined us today to talk about the various outdoor spots in Illinois that could be an alternative hike to Starved Rock. 

In case you missed Nuno's list of outdoor recommendations, here they are:

Story source: WILL