Take a trip to Zion, Illinois where there's a little bit of holy in its origins and unholy lurking close by.
The City of Zion was founded in 1901 by Dr. J. Alexander Dowie; it is one of the most representative religious utopias and planned industrial communities of the 20th century. Zion is also one of only a few in the world to have ever been completely planned out before building. Most of the north-south roads were all named from the Bible and it was 'dry' until just a few years ago. Dr. Dowie also started the Zion Tabernacle of the Christian Catholic Apostolic Church which was the only church in town.
Your group will tour Shiloh House; Dr. Dowie's three story 25-room mansion also built in 1901. Many of Dr. Dowie's personal belongings are on display in the house including lovely samples of lace and tools from the Zion Lace Factory, mementos from Zion Industries and volumes of Dr. Dowie's books, writings and the local newspaper.
Tour the current church - Christ Community Church that continues to this day. Many of our groups attend their Passion Play during the Easter season.
Lunch is at the lovely grounds of the Illinois Beach Resort, Illinois' only resort on Lake Michigan. Take the winding roads through the state park and should you have a more active group, a local guide can take you on a walking tour after the meal.
Your afternoon brings a bit of unholiness with a Behind the Scenes tour of Dungeon of Doom Haunted Attraction. Dr. Dowie is probably rolling over in his grave as it's one of the nation's best 'haunts.' However, we'll leave the lights on and your group will learn the psychology of the scare + mechanics that make this attraction terrifying!
Have a special catered dinner in Shiloh House along with some evening entertainment provided by Fine Arts Department of Christ Church and then s'mores and bonfire on the beach at the resort. You can decide if you want more saintly or sinfully good stories told around the campfire!
The following morning after a soulful breakfast, we have several other area inspirational spaces such as Marytown, University of St. Mary of the Lake, Monastery Gracanica or the First Presbyterian Church of Lake Forest to bless the tour before heading home!
Wherever the ride takes you in Lake County, be sure to share your experience with #VisitLakeCounty.
However you choose to piece together your tour, your knowledgeable Lake County coordinator Jayne Nordstrom will be on hand to assist you.