Day 1 - Welcome to the Chicago Southland
We will begin the day with a guided tour of the Pullman Historic District. From the “World’s Most Perfect Town” in 1906, to near-demolition in the mid-20th century, to a neighborhood revitalized in the present day, the saga of the Pullman Palace Car Company and the neighborhood known as Pullman is on display at the Pullman National Monument Visitor Information Center. The center sits on the site of the Arcade Building and includes exhibits that feature historic pictures, Pullman-related items and a short video that summarizes the town’s history. The visitor center is the starting point of the Pullman District tour and will take you to the historic Greenstone Church, made from distinct serpentine stone. From there, you will travel past neighborhood row houses, through the Market Square and, finally, to the grand Hotel Florence.
After taking in the sites of Pullman, travel less than a mile to the Method Soap Factory. Method is the industry’s first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) platinum-certified soap factory in Chicago, setting new standards for making soap. Your group will learn about renewable energy, hydroponic farming and green manufacturing. Upon arrival, you’ll be greeted by an enormous wind turbine. In fact, this 230-foot wind turbine works the opposite of a fan: instead of using electricity to make it, it uses wind to make electricity. The wind turbine helps generate half of the building’s annual electrical consumption. The factory also has a “greenroof” — the urban agriculture company Gotham Greens has taken over 75,000 square feet of the roof to create a commercial-scale greenhouse, which produces about 500 tons of fresh, premium quality, pesticide-free produce annually for the local community and surrounding retail and restaurants.
Next, enjoy lunch at The Pier at Harborside, located inside Harborside International’s spacious 20,000 square foot, prairie-style inspired clubhouse. Overlooking the scenic golf course, this restaurant specializes in classic, American favorites. Menu items include juicy wings, fresh wraps and salads, Angus beef burgers and more!
Wrap up day one in historic downtown Frankfort. From upscale to eclectic, the boutiques and stores in Downtown Frankfort offer unique selections and personal service that you won’t find at the shopping malls. Your group will enjoy a relaxing shopping experience in the small-town setting of downtown Frankfort. They will discover quality children’s clothing, art, women’s shoes and accessories. Frankfort also boasts home décor, dollhouse and garden accessories, products for pampered pets, counters lined with penny candy, a butcher shop and more. The old-fashioned Frankfort General Store specializes in nostalgia, carrying candies from yesteryear, soy candles, ornaments, gifts, sauces, dips, popcorn and much more!
Day 2 - Art Throughout the Chicago Southland
Begin your Chicagoland Art Tour at the Shrine of Christ’s Passion. The Shrine of Christ’s Passion is an interactive, half mile winding pathway that begins with the Last Supper and Garden of Gethsemane. Take the journey through the Passion of Christ as you view the 40 life-size bronze sculptures, each an exquisite work of art.
After experiencing the Passion of Christ, continue the journey to Bible League International, where we will explore the history of the known facts about Johannes Gutenberg and the Gutenberg Press. You will also hear the fascinating story about Bill and Betty Chapman, who purchased 1,000 Bibles in 1936 and went door-to-door in Walkerton, Indiana. They asked neighbors, “Do you have a Bible?” and if the home didn’t, they asked, “Will you promise to read this Bible?” Today, their ministry reaches over 52 million people worldwide.
Just minutes away from both the Shrine and Bible League International is Lotton Art Glass Gallery & Studios, home to the studios of Charles Lotton. The business began back in 1970 with prayers and dreams when Charles started in his backyard, teaching himself the art of glassblowing. Today, you can find Charles experimenting with some of the most breathtaking colors in the world. The chemistry of Charles is unique to Lotton Art Glass, and his studio is one of the very new studios in the world to start with sand. Today, Charles’ works permanently grace hundreds of museum collections.
Wrap up your second day in the Chicago Southland with a delicious group dinner at Ravisloe Country Club, Glenwood Oaks or Balagio Ristorante.
Day 3 - End Your Tour in the Chicago Southland
Before heading home, visit a unique and quaint downtown area: Homewood, home to the largest collection of Richard Haas murals anywhere in the world. Haas, a world-renowned paint specializing in large, illusion murals, was first invited to Homewood in the early 1980s. Your group will be able to experience all 14 of the large, hyper-realistic art that creates the illusion of the depicted objects existing in three-dimensional murals. This style is called trompe-l’œil, which means “deceive the eye” in French. The murals are scattered throughout downtown Homewood and along the historic Dixie Highway.
Return home with a hearty lunch! The Tinley Park Cracker Barrel is located next to I-80, making it the ideal spot for your group to enjoy a meal in the Chicago Southland. Cracker Barrel is famous for providing a friendly home-away-from-home atmosphere in their old country store and restaurant. The Tinley Park Cracker Barrel is known for great food and service!
*Please note: Itinerary may be modified to meet your group’s specific needs. Locations and selections are subject to availability. Please contact Tobie at Tobie@VisitChicagoSouthland.com or 708-895-8200 to obtain current pricing and confirmation of dates and locations.
Pullman National Monument
Method Soap Factory
Frankfort General Store
Shrine of Christ's Passion
Bible League International
Lotton Art Glass Gallery & Studios
Richard Haas Murals
Tinley Park Cracker Barrel
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