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Don't miss these two beautifully decorated Deere family mansions during the holiday season. The 19th Century Christmas features the interiors of the homes decorated for the holidays; along with living-history volunteers, Choir performances, Santa Claus, music, and make-and-take activities for the children. These homes once belonged to the John Deere family and are now operated by the William Butterworth Memorial Trust. Open noon to 5 p.m. Free admission.
Above and Beyond offers guests the opportunity to explore innovations in aviation and aerospace, from the first powered flights to space travel, through hands-on experiences and virtual simulations. In Above and Beyond, guests can learn about the scientific principles that allow us to fly and explore farther through exhibition features such as a group flying experience with motion-sensing technology that simulates the flight of a bird in a flock; a simulated space elevator that transports guests to the edge of space; a virtual design challenge that allows guests to create and race their own supersonic fighter-jet against other pilots; and more. Throughout Above and Beyond, guests explore the scientific concepts behind flight and learn how humans continue to discover innovative ways to fly faster and higher, challenging the limits of both our world and outer space.
Come celebrate the arrival of Lewis and Clark at Camp River Dubois. This annual event commemorates December 12, the day William Clark and the men of the detachment arrived at the confluence of the "Riviere a Dubois," Mississippi and Missouri Rivers. The event will include members of the detachment portraying military life, re-enactors recreating the civilian population and demonstrations. For more information, call (618) 251-5811.
Come down to the Depot District and enjoy Cruise Nites with other families, residents and car enthusiasts. Learn more about Berwyn's proud classic car culture and historical automotive heritage. Cruise Nites are free! Just show up and have a great time!
Head to the Depot District for the 9th Annual Cruise Nites presented by Berwyn Kia, Paisans Pizzeria & Bar, Mike & Sons Auto Services, Cicero Auto Parts, Deece Automotive! Cruise Nites take place on Tuesdays from 6-9pm in the Depot District at Windsor & Grove Avenues steps away from the Berwyn Metra Station. Enjoy your summe evenings while taking a stroll through a combination of car show and nightlife.
Experience the tradition of winter visits as practiced by families in this 1846 brick inn. Hospitality, food, music, and a bake sale. Donations accepted.
Travel back in time to the late 1800s and early 1900s and experience a traditional Victorian and Edwardian Christmas! Tour Ewing Manor, the David Davis Mansion and a Mystery Mansion in Bloomington-Normal and take in the architecture and history of these homes while they are decorated for Christmas. Tours will be at: 2 pm – 5 pm and 5 pm – 8 pm
The centerpiece of Clayville is the Broadwell Inn, the oldest brick building in Sangamon County, built in 1824 by the Broadwell family as a stage coach stop between Springfield and Beardstown. The Inn is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is surrounded by numerous other historic buildings from Central Illinois moved to Clayville in the 1960s to recreate an early frontier pioneer village. Come see a unique piece of Illinois history.
Pioneer artisan and craftsman demonstration, historic building tours, kids activities, craft vendors, with food and refreshments. Enjoy period music and audience participation entertainment throughout the weekend in an 1820's pioneer village.
Head to the Depot District on Tuesday, August 6th for a combination of car show and nightlife. Evening begins at 6pm in the Depot District at Windsor & Grove Avenues steps away from the Berwyn Metra Station.
DrumLine Live, the show stopping attraction created by the musical team behind the hit movies, “Drumline” and “Drumline: A New Beat,” embodies the soulful, high-stepping style of the Historically Black College and University (HBCU) marching band experience. With its riveting rhythms, bold beats, and ear grabbing energy, DrumLine Live is a high octane musical roller coaster ride that is guaranteed to touch every emotion in your body. They have a brand new show for the entire family and they promise… you will be on your feet by Halftime!!
Enjoy a holiday open house and tours of the beautifully decorated Ellwood House Mansion. Every November, the Ellwood Museum partners with area businesses, community sponsors, and volunteers to decorate the mansion room-by-room on all four floors. From November 15-30, (closed Mondays and Thanksgiving) our guided holiday tours give visitors the opportunity to see the mansion in a new light. See our VISIT page for hours and information. At the end of our touring season, we open the doors for a three-day Holiday Open House weekend December 2nd - 4th, 2016. Visitors may purchase tickets in the Visitor Center (or online) and present their tickets at the front door of the mansion. Upon entering the decorated mansion, volunteers will be stationed in each room, presenting the history of the Ellwood House and sharing information about the two generations of Ellwood family members who called Ellwood House home.
The public is invited to the Ellwood House Museum for a new lecture series titled “Local Lore.” Local Lore is an adult lecture series which will cover a wide variety of topics relating to DeKalb history. Each month, a different guest speaker will present these fascinating programs. All lectures take place at the Ellwood House Museum Visitor Center. Visit the Ellwood House Museum webpage for dates and times.
For model railroad aficionados and everyone else who ever enjoyed model trains, this is something to see. The Fever River Railroad is a 103 by 24 foot scale model of a hypothetical railroad. The railroad intersects with models of "real" railroads, each of which can be operated independently. Up to 20 trains can be operating at one time. Industries along the railroad right-of-way duplicate either actual facilities or are typically correct of the industries that would be found in the Upper Midwest. The scenery represents the geographical area as well. A collection of railroad memorabilia and pictures are on display.
Tour and explore three floors of the largest Dutch/German Illinois Windmill built in 1872, filled with antiques and exhibits. Su 1-3PM.
This drive-through is where neighborhood residents display a part of the original Christmas story includes lights, sound and all the biblical characters: wise men, camels, shepherds, sheep and manger scene. Peanuts characters with Charlie Brown follow on Lehnertz Circle. All lighted and all free! (Lehnertz is recognized as the oldest, totally free traditional Christmas display in Illinois.) Crib Blessing scheduled 6:00 pm on the second Sunday of December. Enter Lehnertz Avenue via Sheridan Street, follow through Lehnertz Circle and exit via Ohio Street.
Take a 90-minute nighttime tour of sites throughout Springfield that are linked to spirited stories about Lincoln’s life and death. Founder Garret Moffett based the tour partly on local lore about Lincoln’s visions and dreams, as well as on reported ghost sightings. Sept. 1 to Oct. 31, Tuesday to Saturday, 7:30m. November, Tuesday to Saturday 4pm to Nov. 19th
On Thursday, November 17, the public is invited to the Ellwood House Museum for the new lecture series titled “Local Lore.” Local Lore is an adult lecture series which will cover a wide variety of topics relating to DeKalb history. Each month, a different guest speaker will present these fascinating programs. All lectures take place at the Ellwood House Museum Visitor Center, 509 North First Street in DeKalb. From Christmas trees to Santa Claus, Christmas as we know it is a result of the Victorian era. Just in time for the opening of the decorated Ellwood Mansion, this lecture will explore how our Christmas traditions became popular.
Welcome warmer weather and shake off cabin fever during Naper Settlement’s annual tribute to the changing of the seasons. Learn the time-honored method of collecting sap the old-fashioned way and see a maple tree tapping demonstration. Enjoy hands-on activities and presentations that recount Illinois’ Native American heritage and pioneer past and try a tasty maple treat. Each of the historic buildings will have a different theme and special activities for families to enjoy.
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)
Learn the history of the McPike Mansion and take a look at the documented photos of the mansion and paranormal activity. Then, take a tour of the surrounding grounds and the crypt. Talking with the spirits with Dowsing rods and join us for a dark session in the cellar with our experienced medium. Tour lasts approximately 90 minutes. All proceeds go toward the restoration of the mansion. For more information, contact Sharon at (618) 830-2179.
MSI is home to more than 35,000 artifacts, but not all can be shown publicly—until now. Come face to face with some of the quirkiest artifacts kept in the Museum’s Collection during MSI After Hours: Oddities and Curiosities, an adults-only evening event. For the first time, MSI is offering guests the chance to see several hand-picked rare, unique—and downright kooky—artifacts, while learning the compelling and strange backstories of these items. Enjoy an in-depth conversation, led by the hosts of WBEZ’s “Nerdette” podcast with MSI’s head curator and director of collections, Kathleen McCarthy, about these peculiar objects. Admission costs $25 and includes free parking, snacks, a complimentary cocktail, entry to MSI’s newest temporary exhibit Above and Beyond as well as Brick by Brick, Numbers In Nature: A Mirror Maze, Science Storms, YOU! The Experience, and more. A cash bar and other food for purchase will also be available.
The Sycamore History Museum is proud to announce that the theme of the 2016 Pumpkin Fest Historic Homes Tour is “Restoration!” We have all followed some wonderful public restorations and renovations recently in Sycamore: the Ward Hotel, the Fargo Hotel, the C&NW Depot, and the Townsend Carriage House, now Resource Bank. We want to celebrate some of the lovely homes of historic Sycamore that have been lovingly restored by dedicated owners.