Reflecting on Memorial Day
With Memorial Day on the horizon, it’s a time for people to reflect on their heritage and honor those who gave their lives for our freedoms. It’s a time to decorate the graves of your loved ones, fly the flag, and it has normally been a time to attend a Memorial Day Service organized by local VFW and American Legion members displaying flags, giving speeches, and playing taps. This year the remembrance will look different.
Local museums offer exhibits honoring local service members during different times of conflict including the All Wars Museum at the Illinois Veterans Home, Quincy Museum, and History Museum on Washington Square. You can take a virtual tour of these on Arts Quincy’s Facebook page on the video tab.
The American military in the 21st century is diverse and reflects the complexities of the country and the current times. '100 Faces of War," a traveling exhibition from the Smithsonian, presents the stories of those who served the U.S. in the Iraq and Afganistan wars.
The exhibition, organized in collaboration with artist Matt Mitchell, features 100 oil portraits of Americans representing a cross-section of home states, military branches, jobs and backgrounds. Each painting includes a candid, unedited, firsthand account of war. The statements take many different forms, including emails and letters to loved ones and poems and words written specifically for this exhibition.
As home to the oldest Veterans Home in Illinois and American Legion Post 37, as well as being host of a variety of veteran fundraisers, events and services throughout the year, Quincy, Illinois has long valued the dedication and lives of our country’s veterans. It’s because of this The Art Center is excited to host this traveling exhibition by the Smithsonian Institution in collaboration with artist Matt Mitchell.
A look at the Quincy Museum
The Quincy Museum is located in the historic Newcomb-Stillwell Mansion at 16th and Maine Streets. The 1891 mansion is a beautiful example of Richardsonian Romanesque architecture and is located on one corner of what National Geographic Magazine identified as “one of the most architecturally significant intersections in the United States.”
The Newcomb-Stillwell Mansion was originally the home of Richard F. Newcomb, Quincy businessman and civic booster and later, his son-in-law, John Stillwell, one of the founders of the Electric Wheel Company. The Mansion features gorgeous stained glass windows on all three floors as well as seven different types of wood, ornate fireplaces and hand-laid mosaic tile. The Quincy Museum offers guided tours of the beautifully restored first floor and self-guided tours of the second and third floors. The second floor contains a restored bedroom and changing exhibits of local interest. The third floor features our ballroom and family-friendly exhibits on Dinosaurs, Native Americans and Mississippi Wildlife. The Museum Gift Shop features American Girl dolls and accessories, old-fashioned toys, and items related to our current exhibits.
Located in the heart of downtown and in Quincy’s Historic German District, the Dick Brothers Brewery District is a complex that is alive with magnificent architecture and mysterious tunnels below the street. The buildings house a museum, gallery, studio spaces for artists, places for events big and small, and much more!
Dick Brothers Brewery was founded by three brothers. In 1857, the brewery started producing and shipping beer, reaching 70,000 barrels at its peak, making Dick Brothers Brewery the largest in the Midwest at the time.
It’s going to be a very different Mother’s Day for most families. There won’t be fancy dinners out, trips to see a local play or other special activities we normally associate with mom’s special day. Instead, we’ll be sheltering in place and social distancing.
Fun, right? Well, actually, it can be. We’ve come up with several fun ways for you to enjoy this year’s Mother’s Day without ever leaving the house. Check out our creative suggestions below and get ready for a very different, but still very special Mother’s Day 2020.
(Mother’s Day is Sunday, May 10.)
The Tin Foil Boat Challenge
Thank you Isabella and Jackson Weppler of Ursa for providing this fun activity! Isabella is in fifth grade at Unity Middle School and Jackson is in fourth grade at Unity Elementary School.
The tin foil boat challenge asks kids to think outside the box and build a unique boat that will float and hold 100 pennies. This two-part experiment can be done with items you already have around your home. To set up, give kids a sheet of tin foil and present them with other materials that will help them build a stable boat. Some supplies that may be useful include wooden craft sticks, straws, pipe cleaners, tape and glue. Next, you’ll fill a large sink or a clear storage tote with water. If weather allows, this activity is best outdoors!
The first weekend in May has traditionally been reserved to celebrate the emergence of spring here in Quincy. The city’s ornamental trees are in full bloom, flower beds are popping with color, birds sing, bees and butterflies dance above the green grass and flowers, and people are coming out of hibernation to enjoy the outdoors. For 50 years, Quincy Area Chamber of Commerce has brought our community together during the annual Dogwood Parade. Hundreds of local businesses and organizations sign up to participate while thousands of people line the sidewalks of Maine Street to enjoy the atmosphere, the abundance of architectural treasures and the company of their families and neighbors.
More recently, Lincoln in the District Festival would be happening on the square along with The District’s Farmers Market and many businesses and restaurants open to serve patrons. The Quincy Park District would also have the city’s numerous parks open for everyone to enjoy. Let’s not forget the local museums and historic sites that would typically be open for people to discover and explore local heritage.
Although 2020 has brought an unprecedented disruption to daily life to the entire world, these time honored traditions are something that must be commemorated. The show must go on! Quincy Area Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Great River Economic Development Foundation and The District are holding a new kind of Dogwood Parade this Saturday, May 2 in honor of our healthcare workers on the frontlines: Honk for Healthcare Workers Cruise!