Celebrating History

Each spring Naper Settlement’s Bryan Ogg gives walking tours as a part of Community Heritage Month. This year he’s developed new tours for the community. On May 8th, he’ll lead walkers down the Riverwalk, pointing out historical points of interest

“There’s so much history on every corner,” said Ogg, Curator of Research at Naper Settlement. “You can come to the museum and you can look at exhibits and go to the buildings, but to actually walk through the town and see the history is really exciting.”

Other Naper Settlement historical experts will also lead walking tours. One will be at Naperville Cemetery on May 7th, and another is the Town and Gown tour of North Central College on May 15th.

Librarians at the Naperville Public Library’s three locations have developed activities for all ages during Community Heritage Month.

“We have Matie’s History Mystery Challenge for teens where they’ll answer 6 questions and whomever answers all 6 correctly will get drawn in a raffle to win some really great prizes,” said Amy Byrne, Adult and Teen Services Supervisor at Nichols Library.

There’s also a quiz for adults this year. The two quizzes have different questions and open up a great chance for Naperville residents to learn more about the community’s heritage.

Heritage Month planners have included a new addition to the month’s events. North Central College is inviting the community to their Cornerstone Week activities-the official kick-off of the college’s sesquicentennial celebration.

This year also marks the 150th Anniversary of the start of the Civil War, and the annual Civil War Days will take place at Naper Settlement May 21st and 22nd.

“Whether it’s the college’s anniversary or the Civil War anniversary…without heritage and without understanding heritage, you don’t have a context for anything that happens today,” said John Buckley, Vice President of Institutional Advancement at Naper Settlement.

The final event during this year’s community heritage month celebration is the grand re-opening of Centennial Beach Memorial Day Weekend. In the past there has been free admission to the beach on Memorial Day, but this year that day is paid admission. Naperville Park District officials say they’re having free admission that Saturday instead.


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