A Jaunt through Joliet & the Joint
A Jaunt through Joliet & the Joint Wednesday, September 18, 2019 $115
Spend the day in this river town where its rich history dates back to Father Marquette and Louis Joliet’s expedition of 1673. At the Joliet Historical Museum, we’ll take a guided tour to see how the town has evolved from a from a steel and manufacturing city to a present-day commuter suburb. The museum located on what was once the crossroads of historic Route 66 and the Lincoln Highway features state-of-the-art audio-visual presentations, life-size models, and award-winning touch screen visuals that help you explore how the past shaped Joliet today. Walk through a replica of the I & M Canal, window shop on a turn-of-the-century Joliet street, take a virtual ride on a replica trolley and live the legend of Route 66. Of special interest is the state-of-the-art Apollo/Houbolt Exhibit, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the historic 1969 moon landing and honoring former Joliet resident and the chief conceptualizer of the lunar orbit rendezvous segment, Dr. John C. Houbolt. The 500 square-foot, two-story exhibit features interactive panels, diagrams and maps, audio-visuals, flat-screen narratives, and period dioramas to tell the exciting story of the race to the moon, the Apollo 11 mission and the moon landing. In downtown Joliet, we tour the magnificent Rialto Square Theatre built in 1926 as a vaudeville movie palace. The theatre features an elaborate esplanade, rotunda and a grand Barton Theatre Organ. We will also visit an elaborate 1873 mansion built by railroad magnate Jacob Henry. Here we’ll have an upscale luncheon amongst the Victorian charm before a stroll thru the mansion. Then it’s on to the joint! Joliet’s brand-new tourist attraction, the Old Joliet Prison, that is! A 90-minute tour tells the history of the Correctional Center, a prison until 2002, from its construction in 1858 to its recent use as a movie and TV set. The TV series “Prison Break” was filmed here and it also served as the backdrop where “Joliet Jake” (John Belushi) was released from jail in the classic 1980 movie The Blues Brothers.