LINCOLN, Ill. — On April 29th, 2017, The Mill on Route 66 will open for the first time ever as a Route 66 museum. Plans include a gift shop, featuring unique local items, and Route 66 souvenirs.
A parade from Historic Downtown Lincoln departing at 11am and ending up at The Mill, where there will be a formal ribbon cutting and Grand Opening from Noon-4pm, will kick off the opening. The downtown district is now signed as the 1926-1930 alignment in Lincoln, By following this newly signed alignment, Route 66 travelers will experience the historic structures that make up Lincoln’s downtown, including City Hall (with the phone booth on top of the building), the Logan County Courthouse, the Andrew Carnegie-designed Lincoln Public Library, the Lincoln Depot (which is undergoing renovation) and the uniquely beautiful Scully Building. There is also an Abraham Lincoln downtown walking tour that includes Lincoln’s famous Watermelon Christening Scene. And for shoppers, check out the large variety of specialty shops downtown and plenty of great home-cooked dining options for visitors coming to town.
The the museum will feature transportation themes from Logan County’s rich Route 66 history, including food, fuel and lodging. The museum will house the official collection from both The Mill in Lincoln and the former Pig Hip Restaurant in Broadwell.
“It's great when an iconic Route 66 property like the Mill in Lincoln is restored and can again be shared with visitors from around the world,” observed Bill Kelly, Executive Director of the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway. “A lot of hard work, creativity and cooperation will be rewarded this Spring when the Mill resumes its proper place as one of the great stops anywhere on the Mother Road.” The April 29th date for the event is also the same day as the annual Bike Blessing in Lincoln, hosted by local motorcycle enthusiasts. The event is being held at Zero Tolerance in Lincoln beginning at 1pm, and includes a meal and live music. Local Lincoln attractions, Postville Courthouse State Historic Site and Lincoln Heritage Museum at Lincoln College will also be open that day. The grand opening event is also during Lincoln College’s Alumni Reunion weekend. After the grand opening, the celebration will move to Spirited Republic craft beer bar and wine shop, located on the south side of the square, from 4pm-6pm. The public is invited.