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Aurora's Zagster Bike-Share Program
The City of Aurora and Zagster, Inc. launched a new bike-share program that will provide Aurora visitors with a convenient, affordable and healthy way to get around town. 18 cruiser bikes are available at three downtown stations for riders to use for on-demand, local trips. Stations are located at RiverEdge Park - 360 Broadway Ave., Aurora City Hall - 44 E. Downer Place and Santori Public Library of Aurora - 101 S. River Street. This initiative creates new opportunities for visitors to experience the Aurora Area from a different vantage point and see it in a whole new light.
Frozen at the Tower
It may be hot this summer, but the Lewis and Clark Confluence Tower is celebrating all things "Frozen" on Saturday, Aug. 6. Anna and Elsa from the movie "Frozen" will be on the upper two levels of the Tower for a meet and greet event and photos with their fans. Free Frozen souvenir balloon art from Jay "The Balloon Dude". Tower admission is $1 for children and $2 for adults.
McPike Mansion Halloween Campout
Visit the spirited McPike Mansion and celebrate Halloween during the annual McPike Mansion Halloween Campout. Visit the wine cellar to communitcate with the spirits of McPike Mansion while you enjoy food and fun. Reservations can be made by calling (618) 830-2179. Admission is $35 per person. (18+ only)
Take a kayaking class or a kayaking trip with an ACA certified instructor on the beautiful Fox River, Batavia. It's fun and informative. Check out some videos on what you will learn in the different classes. Several group and private kayaking classes - first time kayakers to intermediate. See the calendar for dates and times. So grab your friends and let’s go paddling!
Autumn Solstice Haunted Extravaganza
Meet paranormal investigators, have a free Tarot card reading and take a free tour of the Historic Museum of Torture Devices during the Mineral Springs Haunted Autumn Solstice Extravaganza. There will be speakers, vendors, door prizes and so much more! For more information, call (618) 465-3200.
Long Hollow Canopy Tours
New attractions in the Galena Territory. Enjoy spectacular views of Northwest Illinois on this 2 1/2 hour guided canopy tour. Ride 6 ziplines, cross a suspended bridge, and rappel off of two platforms. Longest line is 1,250-feet!
Half Day Brewery Co
The feel is casual, comfortable yet energetic and an inviting, exciting and sophisticated atmosphere. The menu features artesian hand tossed Pizza made in a wood fired oven with a very thin crust and exceptional flavor profiles, house made chips, Dutch oven steamed mussels, truffle deviled eggs, proprietary ground beef blend hand patty burgers, Braised Beef of the Day and baked pasta dishes. The Brew-House will produce up to 12 different brews to be served, from Lagers to IPA’s, to Stout’s and seasonal, and even some small batch wood barrel aged specialty beers. The Brew Master will also create craft sodas, do brewery tours and walk throughout the facility and let guests sample our craft brews, and be educated on the Half Day Brewing experience.
Open House at Haskell Playhouse
Come and take a tour of this historic playhouse the 2nd Saturday of every month. This playhouse was built by Dr. and Mrs. William Haskell for their five year old daughter Lucy. It is a rare architectural gem containing many of the flamboyant elements of the Queen Anne style: cartwheels, brackets, spires, diagonal sticking, fish scale shingles and stained glass windows. It's importance is magnified because so few of these accessory structures for children have survived. The playhouse contains a single room, front porch and side porch. The interior has been restored and the playhouse is open for special occasions. The playhouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974.
Angel Ambrose Fine Art Studio and Creative Space
You will find a large selection of paintings, gift items, prints, and cards that feature Angel's unique ability to capture unseen concepts and make them visually consumable. She often paints lyrical landscapes using evocative color to allude to idyllic beauty. Writing and speaking developed out of her deep desire to communicate. Speaking is a natural overflow of Angel's passion to communicate, utilizing both her visual vocabulary and words.
Cruisin’ with Lincoln on 66 Visitors Center One Year Anniversary Celebration
Join us on the Museum Square to celebrate the one year anniversary of the Cruisin’ with Lincoln on 66 Visitors Center on Monday, April 25 from noon to 4:00 p.m. Come out and enjoy refreshments and a Route 66 performance from the Sound of Illinois Chorus on the plaza at 12:15 p.m. The Museum will also offer free admission to the new permanent exhibit gallery, Making a Home, which explores the experience of living, working, farming, and creating community in McLean County.
Treehouse Wildlife Center
TreeHouse Wildlife Center is a non-profit wildlife rehabilitation center dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and release of native injured and orphaned wildlife. Located on approximately eight serene and beautiful acres, it's the ideal environment for injured or orphaned animals who need time to recuperate. Visitors are welcome to come out for a self guided tour of the outdoor cages at our Dow facility. Guided tours also available. We are open from 10am - 3pm everday.
Barn Quilt Heritage Trail
Visitors are invited to explore Bloomington-Normal and join in the celebration of McLean County's agricultural heritage, quilting, local history and the arts. The Barn Quilt Heritage Trail features over a dozen area barns or other farm buildings, each decorated with an 8' x 8' painted quilt square. A complete list of all participating locations is available on the Barn Quilt website. Step-on tour guides are available upon request for bus tour groups.
Beer Nuts Company Store - Plant
Bloomington, Illinois is the only city in the world where beer nuts are made! A video presentation on the making of beer nuts can be viewed in the gift shop, and nuts are available to sample in the Company Store.
Looking for Lincoln Audio Tour
This CD-based audio tour presents President Lincoln as a returning visitor, talking about the places he visited and their meaning to him. Whether you drive the route or enjoy the tour from your favorite armchair, the audio tour is a special and novel way to learn about the history of Lincoln and the role Bloomington-Normal played in his life. The CD can be purchased at the McLean County Museum of History
David Foster Wallace Tour
A self guided tour of places in Bloomington-Normal was developed with a map and description of the sites to explore the life of David Foster Wallace who was an American author of novels, short stories and essays, as well as a professor of English and creative writing. Wallace is widely known for his 1996 novel Infinite Jest, which was cited by Time magazine as one of the 100 best English-language novels from 1923 to 2005. Infinite Jest was completed while Wallace was living in Bloomington and employed in the Illinois State University English Department. In 2013, Illinois State created an annual David Foster Wallace Conference to celebrate his life and review his works.
DeKalb County Farm Stroll
The Illinois Extension office for Boon, DeKalb and Ogle Counties is hosting a DeKalb County Farm Stroll on Sunday, July 24th from 12 - 5 pm. Wondering where to find local food & farm products in DeKalb County? Satisfy your local food cravings and curiosities on the DeKalb County Farm Stroll! A free self-guided tour of more than a dozen diversified family farms. Each location will have different events going on, but the stroll will allow participants to meet local farmers, get farm tours and demonstrations, sampling of fresh local products, and more. There is no starting location for the stroll, guests are welcome to visit as many or as few as they would like and in whatever order they would like. The address on this listing is one of the farms participating, please visit the stroll's Facebook page for a complete list of farms and for more information on the event.
Chicago Steakhouse Tours
When it comes to steaks, Chicago has much more than the sizzle, it’s got the meat. Guests on this tour will get the sizzle, the smells and the tastes as they learn about the grand history of steaks in Chicago and go to the great steakhouses that serve them. Chicago Steakhouse Tours is the first excursion of its kind that takes visitors and locals through some of the most historic neighborhoods and to the most iconic steakhouses of Chicago’s rich history. Our guests will take a tour through the River North, Gold Coast and Streeterville neighborhoods via luxury bus and stop at three different Chicago steakhouses to sample a prime cut of meat or a signature dish at each establishment. You will get an exclusive look at what makes each individual steakhouse so special while learning not only the secrets of their steak preparation, but stories of some of the world’s most famous celebrities that have dined and partied there. Each steakhouse has a unique story of its own with it’s own savory flavor.
Rader Family Farms
Attractions inside the farm include: The Pumpkin Blossom Café and Gift Shoppe, Harvest Brew coffee shop, picnic area and a variety of produce. Activity admission includes access to a jumping pillow, school house education barn, little toddler village, giant mountain slide, climbing straw castle, corny bins, cattle chute jump, rodeo roundup, big digger sandbox, family hayrack rides, train rides for kids, farm animals and live music. A key part of our mission at Rader Family Farms is to educate while we entertain. Field trips and tours are available.
Behind the Curtain Tour - Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts
The fascinating history of the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts comes to life in the Behind the Curtain historic tour program. Led by a group of specially trained docents, you'll not only see the beautiful neo-Classical interior design of the BCPA, but also learn all about the many technical and patron service updates achieved in the building's significant renovation. You won't want to miss this surprising, fascinating, and fun-filled look at one of Bloomington's historic and most thriving buildings. Bring your stories, your questions, and, above all, your curiosity. Behind the Curtain tours are one hour in length and can accommodate a wide variety of group sizes.
Open House at Haskell Playhouse
Come and take a tour of this historic playhouse. This playhouse was built by Dr. and Mrs. William Haskell for their five year old daughter Lucy. It is a rare architectural gem containing many of the flamboyant elements of the Queen Anne style: cartwheels, brackets, spires, diagonal sticking, fish scale shingles and stained glass windows. Its importance is magnified because so few of these accessory structures from children have survived. the playhouse contains a single room, front porch and side porch. The interior has been restored and the playhouse is open for special occasions. The playhouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. The open house will be held on June 11, July 9, August 13 and September 10, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
The Lincoln’s Festival in Bloomington is an annual event that celebrates Abraham Lincoln’s connection to Bloomington-Normal and it’s surrounding communities. Through Civil War reenactments, tours of historic sites, lectures, theatrical, and musical presentations, the Festival’s mission is to entertain and engage audiences in the local Lincoln story. Events will take place in seven locations; Downtown Bloomington, McLean County Museum of History, Bloomington Public Library, Franklin Park, Burr House Bed and Breakfast, Illinois Wesleyan University, and the David Davis Mansion.
Bronzeville Visitor Information Center
The BVIC is an African-American heritage tourism destination that serves as the main orientation center for those visiting Bronzeville. Here, visitors, residents, students, researchers and entrepreneurs can receive an orientation and information on Bronzeville's rich history and culture.
We are a diverse, modern farming operation located in the heart of Illinois farm country with state of the art facilities and equipment. We can arrange tours and have banquet and meeting space for groups and weddings.
History Comes Alive
Many sites and attractions in historic Springfield will be brimming with free live performances and fun activities that will transport you and your family back in time – to the Springfield Abraham Lincoln knew and loved. From storytelling and interaction with costumed interpreters to visits with Mr. Lincoln, himself, this is a trip to the past you won't want to miss! History Comes Alive will run through August 13th.