200 North Main Street | Bloomington, Illinois | 309-827-0428
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August 2017

August 1st, 2017 / 7:00 PM

History Reads Book Club: Funk of Funk’s Grove: Farmer, Legislator, and Cattle King of the Old Northwest, 1797-1865 by Helen M. Cavanagh

This is a joint program presented by the McLean County Museum of History and Bloomington Public Library. The program is free, open to the public, and is regularly held in the Governor Fifer Courtroom on the second floor of the Museum.

All meetings occur on Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m. Attendees are invited to explore the Museum before or after the meeting and free parking is available at the Lincoln Parking Deck located one block south of the Museum on Front Street. Copies of each book will be available for checkout at Bloomington Public Library or may be requested via interlibrary loan through your local public library.

The Museum has also arranged for a tour of the Funk Prairie Home and Museum on Saturday, August 26 at 1 p.m. for book club attendees interested in going.

For more information on this program please contact the Museum’s Education Department by email at education@mchistory.org or by phone at 309-827-0428; or contact Karen Moen at Bloomington Public Library at reference@bloomingtonlibrary.org






August 5th, 2017 / 1:00 PM

Movies Under the Dome: The Wizard of Oz

Put on your ruby slippers and follow the yellow brick road to the McLean County Museum of History for a special weekend matinee of The Wizard of Oz! The fourth installment of our Movies under the Dome series takes place on Saturday, August 5 at 1:00 p.m. This program is free and open to the public.

Celebrate the end of summer with this 1939 classic about a Kansas farm girl transported to a fantasy land of magic, danger, and Technicolor! Discover Dorothy’s surprising connections to Bloomington-Normal. Get creative during an intermission packed with fun activities for the kids. While you’re at it, be sure to take a peek at rarely-seen, movie-themed items from the Museum’s collection. Stick around after the show for a chance to win exciting prizes. Costumes are encouraged!

The Wizard of Oz has a run time of 1 hour 52 minutes and is rated PG for mild violence and suspenseful situations. Drinks and popcorn will be available for purchase. Don’t forget, it’s the last day to donate to the Back 2 School Alliance supply drive. Bring in new school supplies and receive a free bag of popcorn! Check the Alliance’s website for a list of approved items: http://back2schoolalliance.org/?page_id=140. For more information, contact the Education Department at education@mchistory.org or 309-827-0428.

August 12th, 2017 / 10:00 AM

Under the Dome Knit In


Under the Dome Knit In
Knitters and crocheters—mark your calendars for another year of Under the Dome Knit Ins! The Museum welcomes all knitters and crocheters to come down and create charity items or work on your own project. Keep an eye out in our August monthly mailer where we will announce this installments feature charity. Light refreshments will be provided. This program is free and open to the public.



August 15th, 2017 / 7:00 PM

Songs of Life, Love, and Friendship: an evening of music with IWU's Crystal Muro and Kelly Riordan

IWU Music Recital

Tuesday, August 15 at 7:00 p.m.

Songs of Life, Love, and Friendship: an evening of music with Crystal Muro and Kelly Riordan

Come hear an evening recital ranging from classics like Donizetti and Schumann to Frank Sinatra!

This event is free and open to the public. Donations for the performers are also welcome for this evening performance.

August 19th, 2017 / 9:00 AM

Museum at the Illinois State Fair


What’s better than cattle shows, corn dogs, giant slides, and cows made completely out of butter? All of those things plus fun and games with Museum staff! Join the Museum for a second year at the Illinois State Fair in Springfield. Find the Museum’s table stationed outside the Illinois Building in the Looking for Lincoln area (plus indoor bathrooms in close proximity)! Test your knowledge of Route 66 and Abraham Lincoln by taking a spin on the Museum’s trivia wheels, and prove yourself an expert to collect a prize! Bribes of deep-fried candy bars will be regretfully declined. Can’t wait to see you there!

August 19th, 2017 / 1:00 PM

McLean County Home Front during World War I with Bill Kemp

McLean County Home Front during World War I with Bill Kemp



As part of the Museum’s continuation of programming to commemorate the centennial of World War I, on Saturday, August 19 at 1:00 p.m., the Museum’s Librarian, Bill Kemp, will present an illustrated program on the McLean County home front during the war. This program will be held in the Governor Fifer Courtroom located on the Museum’s second floor, and is free and open to the public.
The “Great War” involved a host of home front activities, including war bond drives, food conservation efforts, shipments of Red Cross supplies, parades, and public gatherings to sing patriotic songs. There was also a dark side to the war, including the suppression of a thriving, large local German community.
Bill Kemp has served as the Museum’s librarian for 14 years. Prior to that, he was at Milner Library, Illinois State University, for eight years. Kemp is also the author of a weekly Pantagraph column, “A Page from Our Past,” which debuted in the Sunday Pantagraph in December 2005. To date, Kemp has written over 550 installments of his column on a variety of local history topics ranging from baseball to the railroad, racism to local artists, and more.
For more information on this program and for a complete list of programs commemorating the World War I centennial, please contact the Education Department at education@mchistory.org or (309) 827-0428.