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Sitting at the foot of Giant City State Park and surrounded by the Shawnee Hills in Southern Illinois, scenic Makanda is a popular destination for artists and nature lovers. The old railroad town was originally a hub for shipping produce to Chicago, but many citizens moved away when advancements in transportation limited job prospects. The town experienced a resurgence in the 1970s and 80s when student artists from Southern Illinois University were drawn to the town for its affordability. Today, Makanda is known for its art scene and continues to attract outsiders thanks to its eco-friendly resort, the Makanda Inn.
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