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Art Fair & Ice Cream Social
For the second consecutive year Ellwood House Museum has combined two popular summer traditions – Art at Ellwood and the Ellwood House Ice Cream Social – into a single day of events on the grounds of the historic mansion. The entire day is generously sponsored by our major sponsor, The National Bank & Trust Company. On Sunday, August 3 from 9:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M., thirty three artists from around the Midwest will exhibit and sell their work on the mansion’s front lawn in such media as paintings, prints, sculpture, ceramics, photography, jewelry, and fiber arts. Folk rock duo Patchouli will entertain during the first part of the day with a mellow blend of voice and acoustic guitar near the entrance to the mansion. At 2:30 P.M., the DeKalb Municipal Band will take over for its annual concert on the terrace during the ice cream social. A variety of food will be for sale on the grounds starting at 11:00 A.M. Vendors include the DeKalb Rotary Club, Culver’s of Sycamore, and Boy Scout Troop 33. Pie will be sold by the Ellwood House Association. First-floor tours of the Ellwood Mansion and the Ellwood-Nehring House will be offered from 11:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. An $8 ticket allows visitors to tour the first floor of both historic buildings. All tours begin in the Visitor Center. Free kids-only tours for kids ages 6-12 will run on the hour from 11:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M. The tours are sponsored by Kish Health System and will combine health and history as kids will count the number of steps they climb while touring the historic Ellwood Mansion. The DeKalb Area Garden Club will present garden vignettes in the Visitor Center, and members will be present to share information and answer gardening questions. Onsite parking at the Ellwood House Museum is very limited. Please utilize legal street parking near the museum.
The Colaw Rooming House
Return to Rt. 66, circa 1947, when you overnight at The Colaw Rooming House. Where you'll experience travel on the Mother Road before Interstates and motel chains were the norm. Located just 2 blocks from Rt. 66 in quaint Atlanta, Illinois, The Colaw Rooming House offers three bedrooms, two full baths, a charming living room with fireplace, dinning room, curved front porch, and delightful yellow and red 1940's kitchen. To further enhance your step back in time, your stay includes a complimentary breakfast at The Palms Grill Cafe-Atlanta's fully restored, circa 1935 small town diner. For more information please visit our website www.thecolawhouse.com
Historic Nauvoo Visitor Center
Begin your exploration of historic Nauvoo by examining the 1846 relief map of Nauvoo, viewing an introductory video, and studying historic artifacts and displays. Gather information on over two dozen restored homes, shops, and religious buildings in Nauvoo.
Oak Park Visitors Center
Visit us for maps, books, souvenirs and unique gifts. Tickets are available for Hemingway's Birthplace Home and Museum, Historic Pleasant Home and The Historical Society of Oak Park & River Forest. Purchase other seasonal special events tickets here.
CITY: Oak Park
Grand Levee and Harvest Festival
The Grande Levee is a celebration of the grand receptions held during the 1800s to honor government dignitaries and important visitors. Friday evening the event kicks-off with a ham and bean dinner on the Vandalia Statehouse grounds along with musical entertainment. Saturday brings a day full of events at the Statehouse grounds for the Ground Levee. The Harvest Festival, which is held on Gallatin Street, will have vendors, sidewalk sales, bingo, kids' activities, inflatables, RC race car exhibition and more!
Grand Detour Arts Festival
The 66th Grand Detour Arts Festival will be at the John Deere Historic Site. Two-and three-dimensional art is shown and offered for sale to the public at this juried fine arts event. A discounted admission fee of $2 is charged for entry to both the site and the arts festival. Enjoy the quality artwork by Midwest, watch the blacksmith at work and learn how John Deere invented the plow. Food stands on site as well as performances by area musicians.
CITY: Grand Detour
DeKalb County Barn Tour
The DeKalb County Barn Tour is a self-guided driving tour of 5 DeKalb area barns, plus the Glidden Homestead historic site and barn, and the DAAHA gallery. Enjoy 6 different styles of barn architecture and various activities related to farming throughout your tour. Photography is encouraged. Carload tickets include a tour booklet and map. Admission is $20.00 per carload. List of sites: Joseph F. Glidden Homestead & Historical Center – See the barn where Joseph Glidden first manufactured “The Winner” barbed wire, which earned Glidden the title “The Father of Barbed Wire”. The barn and home are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. DeKalb Area Agricultural Heritage Association (DAAHA) – an air-conditioned gallery exhibiting photographs of local barns taken by the Sycamore Library Photography Club. Jeff Marshall – A large historic barn interior camouflaged with contemporary aluminum siding. Joseph Marshall – Centennial farm with barn built in 1913 Robert Faivre – Two early 20th century barns and two 21st century barns on the picturesque acreage of Camelot Christmas tree farm. Larson/Martz Family Farms – Quonset barn built in 1955 on a large feeder cattle farm. Josie Hopkins – Preserved barn built in 1839, today filled to the brim with merchandise of Josie’s Antiques
National Shrine of St. Therese/Carmelite Visitors Center
DuPage County, Chicago's Western Suburbs - The National Shrine of St. Therese is a Roman Catholic shrine, chapel, and museum dedicated to St. Therese of Lisieux. The Shrine is home to the most wonderful collection of relics, personal effects and memorabilia of Therese outside of France. Tours of the Shrine are available for groups of 20 or more, including a private tour of an exact replica of St. Therese's monastery cell in France. The shrine sits peacefully on a 50-acre estate owned and operated by the Carmelites of the Most Pure Heart of Mary. Adjacent to the Shrine is the Carmelite Spiritual Center, offering meeting room rental, lodging, meals and spiritual retreats as well as organized Shrine tours.
Chicago Mercantile Exchange
This international marketplace enables institutions and businesses to manage their financial risk and allocate their assets. Futures and options contracts are traded on the Mercantile's two state-of-the-art trading floors.
Chicago Water Works Visitor Information Center
Plan to visit this information center in the Historic Water Tower building and receive brochures featuring attractions and special events. Friendly information representatives will answer your questions and assist in planning an itinerary.
Mattoon Welcome Center & Historic Railroad Depot
Mattoon Tourism & Arts Welcome Center is located in the historic Illinois Central Railroad Train Depot, which also still serves as the Amtrak Station for the Community. The original Railroad Depot was constructed in 1918 by the Illinois Central Railroad, and it was then remodeled in 2011. The Depot is still an active Amtrak Station with 3,000 passengers boarding and un-boarding per month. The welcome center offers a host of information: state-of-the-art schools & colleges, a growing economy, beautiful parks, lakes and sports amenities round out the more favorable quality of life found in Mattoon.
Glidden Homestead Patent Day Celebration!
Joseph F. Glidden was granted a patent on November 24, 1874 for "The Winner," what became one of the most-widely used types of barbed wire in the nation. It all began on the Glidden farm, at the time “a mile west of the City of DeKalb.” Joseph began searching for a better fencing method after his wife, Lucinda, complained about livestock getting into the yard. Hours: Noon to 4:00 pm. Barbed Wire Sites Tour at 11:00 am and 2:00 pm
Center on Halsted
Center on Halsted is the Midwest's most comprehensive community center dedicated to building and strengthening the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) community. Center on Halsted's Community and Cultural team creates and hosts a wide array of fun, interactive and engaging programs enjoyed by members of the entire community. Events range from volleyball games in our gymnasium to dance recitals in our theatre. We host regular receptions showcasing local LGBTQ artists and special events for LGBTQ families and friends.
Wood River Museum and Visitors Center
The Wood River Heritage Council has worked diligently to preserve the town's past at the Wood River Museum and Visitors Center. It is here that you will find exhibits on the Wood River massacre of 1814, Olde Downtown, the Flood of 1915, the World's largest swimming pool, and the impact of Standard Oil on this growing community. Hours Thursday - Saturday, 1 p.m. - 4 p.m.
CITY: Wood River
Monticello Wabash Depot
Built in 1899, the restored depot is the departure point for a weekend afternoon train ride to the Monticello Railway Museum. It also serves as a visitor center for Monticello and Piatt County.
Oak Park Visitors Center Walking Tour
This PDA guided tour will show you the evolution of architecture in Oak Park, from the Victorian period through to Prairie School and the 1930s Art Deco period. Hear the reflections of the famous people who walked these streets and nurtured their creativity in Oak Park.
CITY: Oak Park
Franklin Grove Summer Harvest Festival
The 35th Annual Franklin Grove Summer Harvest Festival is a city-wide celebration of the area's heritage with a wide variety of activities and events for all to enjoy. . In addition, the festival includes a Pancake Breakfast at the American Legion building, village-wide yard sales, tours of the H.I. Lincoln Building in downtown Franklin Grove, the Franklin Grove Art Festival, the Living History Antique Equipment Show and parade, tours of the Franklin Creek Grist Mill, Nachusa Grasslands – Self-Guided Tours and other events in and around the Village of Franklin Grove.
CITY: Franklin Grove
University of Illinois Champaign Urbana
The University of Illinois is a world leader in research, teaching and public engagement. It's distinguished by the breadth of their programs, broad academic excellence and internationally renowned faculty. This Big Ten school offers rich experiences beyond the classroom from the best in performing arts to world-class sports. Discover the scenic campus through tours of the historic buildings and those that are pushing the envelope in technology.
Atlanta's Abraham Lincoln Interpretation Site
The site of an early political rally during Abraham Lincoln's campaign for President, now showcasing an interpretive sign explaining the historic significance.
Dixon Welcome Center
We provide information on Dixon area attractions as well as the Illinois Lincoln Highway. Purchase Reagan and Dixon souvenir items. Also houses the "Of The Prairie" Gift Shop specializing in Illinois Wines and other Illinois Products.
Southern Illinois Artisans Shop and Visitors Center
More than 25 categories of arts and crafts from fine art to the traditional crafts from more than 900 Illinois artisans. Also, home to the Southern Illinois Art Gallery. Special workshops and events throughout the year.
Ottawa Visitors Center
Open 7 days a week to service the traveling public. The Ottawa Visitors Center is your one stop shop for information on the Starved Rock Areas special events, lodging, and outdoor activities. Stroll our turn-of-the-century Old Town with its lush walkways, boutique shops and unique restaurants. Stop here for your "Scenic Route to the Rock."
Quad Cities Visitor Center
Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau's Visitor Center in Moline will provide you with all the information your need on things to see and do in the Quad Cities. Our Visitor Center offers a gift shop filled with souvenirs, local products and even t-shirts dyed in the mud of the mighty Mississippi River. Our trained visitor counselors are on hand to answer your questions and direct you to the many exciting adventures you will find in the Quad Cities. We also provide bike rentals so you can go out and explore the beautiful riverfront trails.
Kennekuk County Park
The 3000 acre park includes a seven mile backpack trail among its 15 miles of trail system. Boats and canoes are available for rental in season, and seven lakes are available for fishing. Hunting of pheasant, rabbit, squirrel, dove, waterfowl, goose, mushrooms, turkey, and deer is permitted (Illinois and Vermilion County Conservation District regulations apply).
John Deere Historic Site
John Deere has a presence around the world, but it all started right here in Grand Detour, Illinois. When you step foot on these grounds, it will feel like taking a step back in time. Hear the floorboards creak as you walk inside John Deere's home. Take in the beauty of the picturesque landscape. And feel the heat of fired steel inside the replica blacksmith shop. Whether you're a school group, a John Deere fan or a history buff, it's an experience you just can't miss.
CITY: Grand Detour
Boone County Conservation District
The Boone County Conservation District manages over 3,00 acres of prairies, woodlands and wetlands in scenic Boone County, Illinois. Minimum impact recreational opportunities, special events and educational programs are offered to the public throughout the year.
Shoal Creek Nature Preserve
This 260-acre site offers nature trails for visitors to explore wetlands, prairie openings, and sandstone bluffs and ledges. The preserve is home to more than 700 plants and 70 bird species, including bald eagles during the winter months.
Pontiac Visitor's Center
Be sure to stop by and pick up local Pontiac and tourist information for area attractions, dining, coupons and shopping. Located inside the Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum building.
Ballard Nature Center
Just minutes away from the city but a world away, Ballard Nature Center is home to dozens of species of birds and wildlife. Natural prairie, wetlands, butterfly and hummingbird gardens, ponds and creeks round out the outdoor experience.
Lock 16 Center
Visitor information, canal exhibits/programs, canal boat tickets, cafe, gift shop, great bathrooms, free Wi-Fi. Private meeting room/facility/canal boat rentals. At western terminus of I&M Canal.
Route 66 Park & Tourism Center
This small park is right on Route 66, and it's a great place to check out the town of Atlanta. It is a great park, including flat area to run and playground for the kids to climb and run on, you and your family are sure to enjoy.
Chicago Premium Outlets, Aurora
Find impressive savings at over 120 designer and name-brand outlet stores, such as Ann Taylor, Armani, Banana Republic, Calvin Klein, Coach, Cole Haan, Elie Tahari, Gap Outlet, J.Crew, Lacoste, Nike, Polo Ralph Lauren, Salvatore Ferragamo, Michael Kors, Theory, Vera Bradley and more. The opening of an additional 80 stores in the Spring of 2015 will make this even more of a Midwest Shopping destination! In Aurora, 37 miles west of Chicago.
Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge
Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge is located primarily in Williamson County, with small extensions into eastern Jackson and northeastern Union counties of southern Illinois. At almost 44,000 acres and with three lakes, Crab Orchard, Little Grassy, and Devils Kitchen, endless opportunities abound for watching wildlife, hiking nature trails, photography, swimming, fishing from the bank or by boat, and hunting. Four seasonally operational campgrounds are open from April-October and offer full hook-up, water, electric, or non-electric sites. Refuge staff and volunteers at the visitor center welcome visitors and sightseers 7 days a week from 8am-4:30pm. Visitor activities such as guided hikes, bald eagle tours, and monthly F.U.N. programs help connect families with the diversity of flora and fauna that southern Illinois has to offer. The Refuge provides many opportunities for wildlife-dependent outdoor recreation for the nature lover in us all.
Arthur Amish Country Information Center
This visitor's center offers maps and information on the entire Amish area, including the 150 Amish craft shops that dot the countryside surrounding the village of Arthur.
Mississippi River Visitor Center
The visitor center overlooks Lock & Dam 15 on Arsenal Island. See the observation deck - a great spot for viewing bald eagles in the winter and for watching barges lock through on their way up and down the mighty Mississippi River. Enjoy exhibits on the Mississippi River and a gift shop. Guided tours are available of the Lock & Dam system on Saturdays and Sundays from Memorial Day through Labor Day at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Tour Reservations are required!
CITY: Rock Island
Giant City Park Campground
Class A campground with separate tent and trailer camping for equestrians. Also, a youth group camp and primitive walk-in tent sites.
Discover cute boutiques housed in historic storefronts in downtown Champaign, including antique and consignment shops. Be sure to stop at PACA’s Architectural Salvage Warehouse, where you’ll find everything from vintage stained glass to ceramic tiles.
Old State Capitol-Illinois Tourist Information Center
Located in the Old State Capitol where Abraham Lincoln gave his "House Divided" speech. Here you'll find tourism information for the whole state. Many free events and performances throughout the year.
Argyle Lake State Park
Find serenity at this beautiful 1700-acre wooded park situated along an old stagecoach route between Galena and Beardstown. Featuring 95-acre Argyle Lake, the park is home to countless beaver dams and more than 200 bird species and 5 miles of hiking and biking trails.
The Lodge at Giant City State Park
Make the scenic trek to Giant City State Park for the all-you-can-eat fried chicken dinner, served in the rustic dining room at Giant City Lodge. The family-style Southern fried chicken comes with made-from-scratch dumplings, mashed potatoes and biscuits with rich country milk gravy.
Chicago Architecture Foundation
Experience Chicago's world renowned architecture with one of 80+ different tours offered by The Chicago Architecture Foundation (CAF). Explore by boat, foot, bus, bicycle or Segway, and choose from tours such as the Devil in the White City tour, Lights, Camera, Architecture! tour, the Daniel Burnham Tour and many others. Interested in the boat tour? Only the Chicago Architecture Foundation and Chicago's First Lady Cruises can showcase Chicago's world renowned city architecture with style, class and comfort. Learn more at www.cruisechicago.com. Also offered: FREE exhibitions, programs and workshops, youth education, family programs and an architecture and design-themed retail store. Private tours and group tour rates available. Open daily 9:30-5:00.
Go on a one of a kind country adventure you'll never forget! Become pioneers for a day on a real 1800s farm and village. Miniature train rides, pony rides, petting zoo, pioneer craft demonstrations, and special events. In the Discovery Barn see chickens, sheep, piglets, baby goats and more.
Starved Rock State Park
Seasonal waterfalls, awe-inspiring bluffs and rugged canyons dominate the storied landscape at Starved Rock. Rich with history and beauty, Starved Rock’s hiking trails meander through towering trees and scenic overlooks along the Illinois River. Outdoor activities include hiking, canoeing, paddle boat cruises, cross-country skiing, trolley rides, fishing and picnicking. Visitors can stay at the historic Starved Rock Lodge or in one of its cozy cabins.