Last year (2015) three cakes were donated to the Friends of Haskell organization in Alton. Two women are currently in charge of the cakes (remaining anonymous). One of them saw all of the cakes in 2014, and she ‘wishes it didn’t have to end’. She was thrilled when the three cakes were donated to them, and she hoped to continue on with the cakes. These cakes are stored on private property, as they are not publicly displayed except at certain events. They can be rented for $25 a night, for any occasion including children’s parties.
Those cakes were Alton City Hall, Alton Visitors Center and the Piasa Bird. Two of them were re-painted, and they chose the Visitors Center to remain untouched. Alton City Hall was converted to match the playhouse (basically look old-fashioned, similar to the Deminil Mansion and Bissell House cakes). The initials are Lucy Jane Haskell, the house/park’s namesake. Piasa Bird was redone into a chalkboard-like cake (similar to the one at U City Lion Gates). The woman said it was too be more kid-friendly as kids can write on it at events. The stl250 was completely removed on both cakes. On the Piasa Bird cake, the stl250 was replaced with a title or circle (like a label).
The group’s purpose is to continuously restore the historic Haskell house, which is located on Henry Street in Alton. The park, which is 8 acres behind the house (and playhouse) is at East 12th and Liberty. Several volunteers have helped out and put in time for the park, including adding a playground in recent years. Some historical markers are found there as well. Lucy Haskell’s playhouse is placed on the National Register of Historic Places. Its annual events include Lucy Haskell’s birthday party (July 29) and some for the holidays. The Alton Municipal Band performs every Sunday at 8pm starting in the first Sunday in June, as it goes on for eight weeks during the Summer.