Lombard is a busy, active community with much to offer its residents. Check out some of the fun things to do in Lombard.
Lombard owes Lilacia Park and its collection of lilacs to Colonel William Plum and his wife, Helen Maria Williams Plum. The Lombard Park District was founded in 1927 when the people of Lombard voted to accept the stipulations set forth in Colonel Plum’s will, which bequeathed his property to the citizens. Soon thereafter, the new park district commissioned Jens Jensen, the famous landscape architect, to design what is now known as Lilacia Park, located at 150 S. Park Ave.
It’s impossible to separate Lombard from its lilacs. Lilac Time, a village-wide festival celebrated each May, is held in Lilacia Park. It celebrates the history of Lombard’s lilacs with a coronation, historical tours, tastings, entertainment and a 5K race. Throughout the year, the Lombard Park District maintains the horticultural showcase that hosts wedding ceremonies, movies in the park, and Holiday Lights in Lilacia. For more information, visit www.lombardparks.com.
LILAC TIME ART AND CRAFT FAIR
The Lilac Time Art and Craft Fair, the first outdoor event of the season, helps to kick off Lilac Time in Lombard. Held on the first Sunday in May, the Lombard community and more converge upon the downtown area to enjoy handmade arts and crafts as well as entertainment, a wide variety of food including many of Lombard’s downtown eating establishments and a Free Kid Zone. There is something for everyone at this event that runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on St. Charles Road between Main Street and Elizabeth.
The Lilac Ball, held each year on the second Friday in May, is a gala evening where everyone comes together to enjoy dinner and dancing with a party atmosphere. The Lilac Ball features an open bar, raffles, auctions, candy buffet and more. Some proceeds from this event are donated to the Lombard Lilac Parade and the Lilac Princess Program. The event is held at Carlisle Banquets, 435 E. Butterfield Rd. in Lombard. All area adults are invited to attend. For tickets, visit lombardchamber.com.
The 63rd Lombard Lilac Parade will be on Sunday, May 20. This year’s theme is “Musicals of Stage & Screen” highlighting the beauty and pride of our wonderful Lilacia Park and village. The parade begins at 1:30 p.m. at Main and Wilson then heads north to Maple and east to Craig Place. The parade is the final event of Lilac Time in Lombard and features the Lilac Queen and Court, Glenbard East and Willowbrook marching bands, Two Rivers Nation Maidens & Braves, Jesse White Tumblers, Shriners, music, horses, dancers, classic cars and much more.
The Lombard Ale Fest is Lombard’s premier craft beer festival. The second annual fest will take place on Saturday, June 9, from 1 to 5 p.m. Situated in the heart of downtown Lombard at Lilacia Park, the fest will feature over 80 unique beers from craft breweries around the country and some of Chicagoland’s favorite food trucks. The fest will be a celebration of summer seasonal beers, food and live music. Kick off your summer right with the Lombard Ale Fest.
PARADISE BAY WATER PARK
The Lombard Park District’s Paradise Bay Water Park, located at 437 E. St. Charles Rd., is a winner of the Illinois Park and Recreation Association’s Outstanding Facility and Park Award. This award winning state-of-the-art facility features Hurricane Cove, a zero-depth entry leisure pool with spouts, fountains, water sprays, whirlpool and host to a body slide, bowl slide, speed slide, and water walk. This paradise-themed park also features a 12-foot dive well, 3-meter and 1-meter dive boards and a drop slide.
Paradise Bay Water Park offers a variety of special events, swim lessons, swim and dive teams and age-related open swim times. Swim the entire summer with a “Passport to Paradise” pool pass. Visit www.lombardparks.com for hours, rates and programming opportunities.
Summertime fun starts with Cruise Nights on Saturday evenings from Saturday, June 9th, through Aug. 25 (with the exception of July 7), in downtown Lombard. Featuring a classic car show along with a free concert series, Lombard Cruise Nights are held near St. Charles Road and Main Street. A wide variety of entertainment is featured including showcase bands, theme nights and family nights. Back by popular demand, American English will be featured on Aug. 25. There’s even a Kids’ Corner for children’s activities, sponsored by various community groups. Walk around and see the classic cars, starting at 6 p.m. For more information, visit www.villageoflombard.org or call (630) 620-5718.
INDEPENDENCE DAY FIREWORKS
You don’t have to go too far to find family fun on July 4 with Lombard’s annual fireworks celebration held in Madison Meadows Park, at Madison and Ahrens streets. The breathtaking fireworks display wows the crowd and brings admirers from all around to see the show.
The fun begins at dusk. Bring your blankets! For more information on Village of Lombard events, visit www.villageoflombard.org
This four-day event features a wide range of entertainment, live music, food vendors, German beer and games at Sacred Heart Parish, 114 S. Elizabeth St. Featured music includes headline bands Rod Tuffcurls and the Bench Press, Hair Bangers Ball and the always popular 7th Heaven, as well as authentic German music.
Other activities include a casino on Friday and Saturday nights as well as a bags tournament and bingo every day of the fest. Children will enjoy Kids’ Bingo on Saturday, and Big M Amusements will provide rides and games for all age.
Admission to Germanfest is free – a nominal fee is charged for the casino with all proceeds benefiting Sacred Heart Parish.
Festival hours are 5:30 to 10:30 p.m. Thursday July 19; 5:30 p.m. to midnight Friday, July 20; 1 p.m. to midnight Saturday, July 21; and noon to 7 p.m. Sunday, July 22.
Enjoy charming holiday displays as the Lombard Park District flips the switch on tens of thousands of lights in Lilacia Park – a wonderland of enchantingly lit trees, a giant gingerbread house and much, much more. Youngsters can visit with Santa for free, ride the delightful Gold Medal Express train, shake hands with their favorite holiday characters, enjoy a spectacular light show and warm up by the fire with complimentary hot cocoa and cookies.
The lighted park display runs through the New Year. Visit www.lombardparks.com for more information.
The Lombard Historical Society maintains two historic house museums, the Victorian Cottage and the Sheldon Peck Homestead. Visitors to the Victorian Cottage will encounter a look at life in the mid-1800s when the days of the pioneer farmer in Lombard were giving way to the industrial age. Additionally, a new permanent exhibit showcases themes throughout Lombard’s history. The Sheldon Peck Homestead highlights the life of artist and abolitionist Sheldon Peck, whose house was a stop on the Underground Railroad. Exhibits focus on Peck’s folk art, pioneer life and involvement in the abolitionist movement. The Homestead is part of the National Park Service Underground Railroad Network to Freedom.
The Maple Street Chapel at the corner of Main and Maple in Lombard is a landmark the entire region recognizes and treasures. The American Gothic board-and-batten design, its stained-glass “grisaille” windows and the chapel’s simple elegance all add to its importance as an historic site.
In the late 1970s, the management, repair, maintenance and preservation of the Maple Street Chapel was entrusted to a group that has grown into today’s Maple Street Chapel Preservation Society, Inc. Through the years this group has cared for and nurtured this unique community treasure.
BIKING ON THE PRAIRIE PATH AND GREAT WESTERN TRAIL
The Illinois Prairie Path and the Great Western Trail are rail-to-trails that are easily accessible to Lombard residents. Both the path and trail link 10,000 acres of county forest preserves, local parks and 500 miles of recreational trails. These trails are an integral part of our identity and a priceless amenity that runners, cyclists, equestrians, dog walkers and nature lovers treasure. Exercise, enjoy nature, meet neighbors or run errands along these green ribbons. For more information on DuPage County trails or to request a county trail map, contact the DuPage County DOT at (630) 407-6900 or email TrailPathCoordinator@dupageco.org.
LOMBARD ROLLER RINK
The Lombard Roller Rink has been around for nearly 35 years. It is a family-oriented facility that offers fun for everyone from birthday parties for kids and teens, to a relaxed Friday morning adult skate, complete with the music you remember.
Teens particularly like the rink’s Friday and Saturday night sessions when special lighting illuminates the skating floor; add glow sticks, great music and adult supervision, and they have a great time hanging out. Skating lessons for children and adults, Zumba classes, Roller Derby classes for women, a men’s Roller Derby team and an Artistic Skate Club are also offered. Lombard Roller Rink also sells skates and hosts private events and fundraisers for schools, churches, Girl Scouts and more.
The Lombard Park District provides recreation opportunities for people to enjoy life. Offerings include community special events, adult and youth organized sports; classes and programs for families, children and adults; and summer day camp for ages 3 to 14. Martial arts, adult athletics, fine art, dance and Kiddie Campus Preschool round out the activities offered. Lombard Park District also offers a full array of fitness programming, including group fitness classes, a fitness center at Sunset Knoll Recreation Center and personal training opportunities. The district owns and operates 17 parks and Western Acres Golf Course. The parks have a variety of amenities including walking paths, tennis courts, a skate park, athletic fields and more.
Residents may also rent one of the district’s many facilities and parks for family gatherings, weddings, parties, showers, corporate events and more. Visit www.lombardparks.com for more information.
In Quest of a great time? Look no further than Lombard’s amazing Enchanted Castle Restaurant & Indoor Entertainment Complex. It’s a kingdom full of fun! There’s laser tag, Go-Karts, bumper cars, amusement rides, king-sized game room, a huge prize redemption center plus a new Kids’ Adventure Playland and bouncey inflatables – all under one roof. The restaurant offers wonderful menu items including freshly made pizzas, specialty sandwiches, wraps, delicious appetizers, fresh salads and desserts. “Wally Wizard & The Singing Dragons Revue” provide entertainment. Visit www.enchanted.com for specials, plus party and group packages.
Combining lacrosse, hockey and basketball with bumper cars, WhirlyBall has caused even great athletes of every stripe to laugh and holler their way to a crushing defeat. Behind the controls of a special bumper car, you’ll use hand-held scoops to propel whiffle balls at your scoring target. You can hear about WhirlyBall or even watch a game or two, but there’s nothing quite like experiencing it for yourself.
After a few lively rounds on the WhirlyBall court, head to the dining room, where you can choose from their delicious array of family fare or savor their special Smokehouse Burger, a Hot Pastrami Cheesesteak, the New York Pot Roast Sliders or maybe even a Pear & Gorgonzola Pizza paired with a brew from their incredible selection of craft beers from the full-service bar.
PLAY is Yorktown Center’s 2,000-square-foot children’s activity area that combines art, technology, a playground and a sense of creativity. Located on the lower level of Center Court outside Carson’s, PLAY offers interactive learning for every age of a child, from toddler to teen and everyone in between.
From a rock climbing wall and an oversized Lego table to interactive gaming apps that encourage creative engagement, this space generates excitement for all of our families at Yorktown Center. For more information on PLAY and many other fun things to do at Yorktown Center, visit www.yorktowncenter.com or call (630) 629-7300.
For the most up-to-date listing of events, check out the Daily Herald calendar at www.dailyherald.com or in the paper, as well as village websites.