GRAFTON, IL - The official ribbon cutting will be Friday, November 15th but the Grafton SkyTour held a soft opening last weekend. Visitors on Sunday were all smiles as they climbed approximately 300 feet in the air in either an enclosed gondola or an open-air chair ride. Visitors can then step outside and enjoy majestic views of the confluence of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers at Aerie’s Resort.
“We had 2 major floods during the construction that put us about 20 to 25 weeks behind,” said J.D. Lorton, Aerie’s Resort Director of Operations.
He expects the Grafton SkyTour to be a success because it’s a unique attraction for the region, “You would have to go to the Smokey Mountains or the Rocky Mountains to find something like this with a gondola and an open-chair combination,” said Lorton.
Tickets are $10 for a round trip which Lorton says is a little more than a mile long. A season pass is $29 and is good for 365 days. The Grafton SkyTour will be open year-round. The resort plans on creating a winter wonderland with Christmas lights beginning December 1st.
Visitors we spoke with said they enjoyed the ride to the top.
“The view was amazing,” said Erika Mallet. “You can see the changing of the trees and it was nice and steady, so it was a great experience.”
“It’s pretty amazing, “said Greg Cushing. “Especially right now the leaves starting to turn colors.”