Museums are great for introducing your children to new, interesting topics or inspiring them to engage more in their favorite subjects, like art, history, or science. Living in the Romeoville, Illinois, area means you and your family are just a short drive away from some of the country’s best museums located in nearby Chicago. But what you may not know is that Romeoville and other nearby suburbs are home to a few interesting museums, too. Here is Crème de la Crème of Romeoville’s list of the top museums in and around Romeoville that you have to visit.
The Beller Museum
Car and truck enthusiasts of all ages are sure to love the Beller Museum, which houses 50+ vintage vehicles ranging from 1920s cars to 1950s pickup trucks and everything in between. Come see these machines up close and personal, hear the stories of how they were made, discover what makes each one special, and learn how the museum keeps them in such great condition. You can also check out the old 1920s and ’30s print advertisements for Ford vehicles, a truly one-of-a-kind experience, in the museum’s expansive library.
The Beller Museum is located at 275 Rocbaar Drive in Romeoville. You can visit this museum Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., but make sure to call ahead to schedule a tour appointment. This museum is free to tour, but you can always donate to help the museum preserve Midwestern vehicle history.
Romeoville Area Historical Society
Stay really close to home and brush up on your town’s history when you visit the Romeoville Area Historical Society. The museum has been in its new location, called the James P. Sczepaniak Museum, since the summer of 2019, but it still houses artifacts, documents, and photographs that depict the area’s evolution over many decades. You can learn about some of the early families that inhabited the area, like where they lived and how they helped the local neighborhoods grow into the strong community it is today.
Come learn about local history from the Romeoville Area Historical Society located at 14 Belmont Drive in Romeoville. Make an appointment for one of their open days: every Saturday from 1 to 4 p.m. and the 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Isle a la Cache Museum
This natural history museum is located on-site at the Isla a la Cache Preserve, so you get to enjoy the great outdoors and learn a bit about the early settlers and Native Americans who once lived and thrived on this land. See 18th-century life up close by feeling the softness of a beaver pelt, walk the inside of a wigwam (native Potawatomi homes), and scout for the local wildlife. You can spot bald eagles and many other types of birds, both migratory and native, and turtles.
After you stroll through the museum, consider staying at the preserve to go for a hike, catch some fish, spend some time on the water in a canoe or kayak, or hunt down some geocaches.
The Isla a la Cache Museum is located at 501 E. Romeo Road in Romeoville. It’s open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Illinois State Museum – Lockport Gallery
View some spectacular art exhibits at the local Illinois State Museum branch, the Lockport Gallery. Here you can see both contemporary works and past collections from Illinois artists and artisans. Look at paintings, sculptures, folk art, photography, clothing, and much more that depict Illinois culture and heritage from many perspectives. The museum also has rotating exhibits in addition to static collections so you can visit many times and always have something new to see and learn about. You can also check out their special events, including lectures, presentations, and kids activities.
You’ll find this museum inside the historic Norton Building, part of the Illinois and Michigan Canal Heritage Corridor. The address is 201 W. 10th St. in nearby Lockport, Illinois. It’s open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Illinois Aviation Museum
If you have an aspiring pilot or aerospace engineer in your family, then you have to bring them to the Illinois Aviation Museum, located on-site at the Clow International Airport. Here you can see a variety of historical aircraft on display as well as the process of old aircraft, like a T-2 Naval training jet and a U.S. Navy A4 attack jet, being restored.
Kids can also join the Experimental Aircraft Association’s (EAA) Young Eagles program, a national program that provides flight experience to children 8 through 17, and participate in events at the airport and museum. This museum and the Young Eagles program can be a great way to get older children more involved in their high-flying hobby.
Come visit the Illinois Aviation Museum at 130 S. Clow International Parkway in nearby Bolingbrook. You can take a tour on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Head to nearby Naperville for an interactive museum experience at the Naper Settlement, a campus full of 30+ culturally significant buildings, from school houses to education centers, learning experiences around the property, and special events for all ages. This open-air museum also has a variety of specialized tours for anything you and your family could be interested in learning about, from a STEM tour that takes you around the different science, technology, and engineering-related sites to a historical tour that hits the major spots on the property with the richest and most interesting history.
On top of all of that, you’ll find costumed tour guides telling the stories of the area’s history and previous settlers, summer camps for kids, concerts and festivals, and so much more.
Check out this unique museum at 523 S. Webster St. in Naperville. Hours and admission prices are seasonal, so summer hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m., and winter hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. In the winter, everyone’s ticket costs $5, while in the summer, kids 4 through 12 years old cost $8, 13 and older cost $12, and seniors cost $10.So there you have it, the six best museums you have to visit with the kids. Did we miss any of your favorite local museums? Contact Crème de la Crème of Romeoville to let us know which ones, and we’ll be sure to add them to our list!