Looking for a hands-on museum where kids can learn about Illinois history, Indians and nature? A place where they can discover the inside of a wigwam, touch furs and learn to trade just like the region’s ancestors?
Isle a la Cache Museum, which sits on an island in the Des Plaines River in Romeoville, is that museum. The renovated museum reopened in 2007, offering families a chance to step back into the past with more hands-on exhibits and floor space for kids. And the best part is the museum’s free admission.
"Our museum offers a unique experience for families to learn about a significant part of Illinois history," says Harry Klinkhamer, museum coordinator.
The museum leads children through the story of the fur trade in Illinois during the 18th century. Native American tribes and French fur traders from Montreal traded beaver fur in this area.
Reenactments occur on the third Sunday of each month. Costumed volunteers show visitors how tools were used, food was cooked and how the region’s ancestors lived 250 years ago. June 14-15 will feature the two-day Island Rendezvous where musicians, storytellers, canoe races and games reign.
Visitors can walk on the island’s nature trails, picnic on the grounds or launch a canoe into the river.The Isle a la Cache Museum is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday and noon-4 p.m. Sunday. For more information, call (815) 886-1467 or www.fpdwc.org/isle.cfm.