Congratulations! You have been selected to attend American Legion Auxiliary Illini Girls State. We are so happy to have you join us and look forward to meeting you.
At this point you are probably thinking, WHAT HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO? No worries, we are providing you with information that will be essential to get the most out of your week with us.
What can I expect once I get to IGS?
During this week, you will learn about citizenship, patriotism, Americanism, and much more. Please be aware that we do pledge allegiance to the Flag of our Country daily. We also pray, each in our own faith at our banquets and in the Legislature.
You will be assigned a "city" to live for your week at ALA IGS. All cities are named after Past (state) Department Presidents of the American Legion Auxiliary. Four or five cities make up a county that is also named for a Past Department President who has served on the National Level. Many of these ladies will join you at your Friday evening banquet.
Each city has a counselor. Your counselor is a former citizen of ALA IGS. You will also have two staff advisors for your county. These ladies are members of the American Legion Auxiliary. All of the ALA IGS staff are members of the ALA and are volunteering their time for this week.
Tradition is a large part of our program. We have flag raising and lowering every morning and evening. We have a flag folding ceremony as well. There is a proper way to retire a worn US Flag. You will be a part of that ceremony as well. We will remember former boys and girls state citizens that have passed away in a poppy wreath laying ceremony. In honor of the citizens of ALA IGS and the current Department President, a brick will be placed in the campus memorial area. On Friday night we have a formal banquet and invite our Past Department Presidents. After dinner and a talent show put on by you, we return to the flagpole for a farewell candle lighting ceremony.
Do you like a great party? On Tuesday evening each city will have a "city spread". This is an opportunity to order pizza, dance and get to know your fellow citizens better as well as do a little campaigning! At the beginning of the week each girl will be asked to donate $5.00 for this party. Please be sure to add that into any spending money you may want for this week.
You will also be assigned a political party for the week. We are a two party system like our Nation. Our parties are the Nationalists (pandas are their mascot) and the Federalists (bunnies are their mascots). This is a random assignment and we try to be sure that the parties are close in numbers.
Information about political party conventions will be in your information packet. Please be sure to pack something to wear to your Party Convention.
This is a week of early mornings, late evenings, and lots of walking (in all types of weather). You will attend assemblies consisting of speakers from all walks of life. Some will be entertaining, some will be informational, some motivational, and some will be all of those things. Some of you will be elected to serve in the House or the Senate. You will be the ones writing our bills and debating them on the floor of the House and Senate. You will be running for office, campaigning, voting, and of course there will be some recreation time as well. For information about the elected positions and their responsibilities, go to the elections tab.