8 Things to Do in Macomb, Illinois - Illinois Farm Bureau Partners 8 Things to Do in Macomb, Illinois - Illinois Farm Bureau Partners

8 Things to Do in Macomb, Illinois

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Macomb Illinois

The McDonough County Courthouse; Photo credit: Michael D.Tedesco

With abundant options for shopping, dining and outdoor recreation, McDonough County’s Macomb is the kind of place you’ll want to return to again and again.

You may not recognize one of its most famous residents by her name, Lizzie Magie, but you have likely heard of her invention: The Landlord’s Game, the precursor to Monopoly. Strolling around the city’s historic downtown square, board game lovers might notice it looks a little familiar.

“We don’t know if she used [the square] as an inspiration for the game, but it’s uncannily similar,” says Jock Hedblade, executive director of the Macomb Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. (For example, the former jail, which is now a Mexican restaurant, used to sit on the right corner.)

In addition to developing more attractions around Magie’s invention, a lot more history in the city of 20,000 will be showcased over the next few years, Hedblade says. That includes a 15-foot sculpture of Abraham Lincoln (complete with a topiary beard that will “grow” over the summer) set to debut in April 2020 and become the most Instagrammable spot in town. Here’s what else to see and do while you’re visiting.

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1. The Old Dairy

Macomb Illinois

The Old Dairy owner Emily Gemage; Photo credit: Michael D.Tedesco

With a name that pays homage to what the historic building used to be, The Old Dairy is a family-owned restaurant that’s a local favorite for breakfast and lunch. Everything is homemade, from the gooey cinnamon rolls to comforting soups and from-scratch pies. A mural on the side of the building, part of the three-phase permanent attraction initiative driving tourism to the area, features paintings of local luminaries.

See more: Visit an 1840s Farmstead at Garfield Farm and Inn Museum

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1 Comment

  1. Mark Karaffa says:

    Hi Jock,
    Mark Karaffa here, nice story on Macomb. I lived in the apartment above your dad’s photography studio in the 70’s and worked as a student photographer for the WIU News Service. I recall you living in Chicago, did you move back to Macomb? Brave move, but it seems to be a trend for many of us finding peace after a hectic life in the city! I enjoyed living in Macomb for 7 years, many great memories!

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