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2022-06-10 18:53:23 By : Mr. wade wu

SPRINGFIELD (WGEM) - You probably know that the Illinois state bird is a cardinal and the state’s favorite vegetable is sweet corn. As of Monday, Illinois also has a state rock thanks to students who found out there wasn’t one recognized.

Dolostone forms the majority of bedrock in Illinois and 3,300 dolomite stones were used to build the Old State Capitol in Springfield. Crews didn’t have to travel too far to find the rocks because dolostone was in the quarry under what is now Lake Springfield.

Elementary school students from the Chicago suburbs created a ballot and asked other students from across the state to vote for the best rock. Dolostone received more than 50% of the vote before the proposal moved on to state lawmakers.

“Getting this bill passed is also a message to people all over Illinois that everyone, we all, can be a part of the legislative process and help make Illinois a better place,” said Sen. Laura Ellman (D-Naperville).

Gov. JB Pritzker said the students could not have picked a better rock to represent the strength and stability of Illinois. The governor noted that dolostone is found in architecture across the state. Pritzker thanked the teachers behind this effort for helping students learn about rocks and the legislative process.

“These lessons extend beyond the classroom and their impact will last lifetimes,” Pritzker said. “On behalf of the state of Illinois, thank you for the excellent work you do shaping the young minds of the next generation of leaders.”

Dolostone was named after the Dolomite Alps in Italy where the rock was first discovered. Many of the students who initiated the process to designate a state rock were able to participate in the bill signing ceremony at the Morton Arboretum Monday morning.

“We’re not only establishing an official state rock with a long history of economic and geological significance to Illinois, we’re building the foundation for a new generation of lifelong learners who are civically engaged and ready to contribute to their communities,” said Rep. Janet Yang Rohr (D-Naperville).

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