'Open Elgin' on April 22 Will Showcase City's Amazing Architecture, History

‘Open Elgin’ on April 22 Will Showcase City’s Amazing Architecture, History

On April 22, 2017, architecture buffs in Elgin and throughout Kane County will have a rare opportunity to walk inside the city’s most fascinating buildings during a free, public event called “Open Elgin.”

Buildings normally not open to the public will open their doors for one day only to share their secrets. Schools, churches, downtown office buildings, businesses and much more, including LEED-certified structures, will be open.

Open Elgin will run from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 22. It’s a free, self-guided tour of uniquely Elgin spaces and places. Tour times for each building will vary.

The First United Methodist Church, which dates back to just after Elgin’s incorporation in the 1830’s, and the Professional Building, Elgin’s oldest skyscraper, will be among the historic spaces participants can visit.

Sustainable spaces include Triumph Community Bank, the Harm A. Weber Academic Center at Judson University and Gail Borden Library’s Rakow Branch. The complete list of more than 25 spaces and places on the tour, along with individual building tour times, is available at www.OpenElgin.com.

“We hope that people from both inside and outside of the city come to Open Elgin to experience the huge variety of remarkable buildings that we have here,” said Elgin Mayor David Kaptain. “From the National Register buildings to the sustainable buildings, this community offers an extraordinary breadth of architecture.”

The Enhancing Elgin committee developed the inaugural Open Elgin event. The committee consists of representatives from City of Elgin, School District U-46, Judson University, Elgin Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, Downtown Neighborhood Association, Elgin History Museum, Elgin Symphony Orchestra, Hamilton Wings, and Gail Borden Public Library.​

3 U-46 Schools Feature

School District U-46 will open doors to three of its unique sites April 22 as part of a new city-wide event celebrating the award-winning architecture and fascinating history of “The City in the Suburbs.”

Abbott Middle School, the U-46 Planetarium & Observatory, part of the original Elgin Watch Factory Observatory that is on the National Register of Historic Places, and Washington Elementary School will be open for visitors from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on April 22.

“U-46 looks forward to welcoming the community to three of our unique District sites,” said CEO Tony Sanders. “We hope this inaugural event will pique interest in Elgin’s rich past and its vibrant future.”

Washington Elementary School will also host its 125th anniversary celebration and unveil a piece of history at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 22. Research, writing and works of art from Washington students will be on display. Special anniversary T-shirts and yearbooks will also be on sale.