Illinois November 07, 2016
10 Things From Illinois’ Past That Will Remind You Of A Simpler Time
We tend to look back at the past wistfully thinking that it was a much simpler time. In some cases, it certainly was – we weren’t constantly surrounded by technology and everything did move much more slowly. Whether you visit a historic site founded in the early 1800s, or a roller rink you remember from the 1970s, these 10 spots will remind you of what life was once like in Illinois.
1. Skyview Drive-In Move Theater, Belleville
The Skyview opened in 1949. If you grew up anywhere near Belleville, you probably remember putting on your pajamas, grabbing some pillows and heading to the drive-in for two (or even three) movies in a row. Of course, you were always asleep by the middle of the second show. 5700 N. Belt W., Belleville.
2. The Polk-A-Dot Drive In, Braidwood
If you happen to stop by the Polk-A-Dot on a day when they're having a car show, you might think you've fallen through a time warp right back into the 1950s. This cute drive in along Route 66 has been open since 1952, and it's just brimming with memorabilia. 222 N. Front Street, Braidwood.
3. Apple River Fort, Elizabeth
Imagine living in 1832 and huddling in this fort while Black Hawk and his warriors attacked. The settlers of this little town hastily built Apple River Fort when the Black Hawk war started. It's the only fort ever attacked by Black Hawk himself. Tour the reconstructed fort to step back in time and learn about this fort's fascinating history from docents dressed in period costume. 311 E. Myrtle Street, Elizabeth.
4. Trolleys in Galena
Take a trolley tour in Galena - it'll take you through Galena's historic district and you'll feel as though you're right back in the mid-1800s.
5. The Rink
Remember spending the day at the roller rink with your friends? Whether you were jamming to 'Funky Town' or checking out the cute boys, this was the place to be. The Rink opened in 1975, and still offers skating classes, parties and open skate. 1122 E. 87th Street, Chicago.
6. Galloping Ghost Arcade, Brookfield
Kids today have no idea how good they've got it. Remember blowing your entire allowance in one afternoon at the arcade? How else were you going to play Frogger, Pole Position and Astroids? This fun arcade has all the classics. The best part? For $15 you can play all day long. 9415 Ogden Avenue, Brookfield.
7. Tinker Swiss Cottage Museum and Gardens, Rockford
This historic house was completed in 1870. The 27-room, Swiss style home was the residence of Robert H. Tinker, who once served as the mayor of Rockford. It's also said to be haunted! Visit it at 411 Kent Street, Rockford.
8. McDonald's #1 Store Museum, Des Plaines
The first franchise McDonald's restaurant opened in Des Plaines in 1955, and the world was never the same. You can visit the site, which is forever frozen in history. If you want a Big Mac, stop by the restaurant across the street. 400 Lee Street, Des Plaines.
9. Lincoln's New Salem State Historic Site
This little re-created village takes you back to 1831, when Abraham Lincoln lived here. The original New Salem was founded in 1828, and was the place where Lincoln worked as a young man. When he won a seat on the Illinois General Assembly, he moved to Springfield, but this place had a profound impact on his development as one of the greatest men of our country's history. 15588 History Lane, Petersburg.
10. Frederick C. Robie House, Chicago
This famous home, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, is said to be one of the most influential homes ever designed. Tour the home and imagine what it was like to live in 1910, when this Prairie School-style residence was completed. It's located on the campus of the University of Chicago. 5757 S. Woodlawn Avenue, Chicago.
Do you have a favorite place that takes you back to your childhood? We’d love to hear your memories!
Ready for some more fun in Illinois? Check out these
11 day trips.