McCormick Day at Cantigny Park


Cantigny Park is celebrating “McCormick Day” on July 26. Activities and demonstrations for visitors of all ages are planned throughout the park from 10 am to 3 pm.

Parking at Cantigny will be free on McCormick Day. Activities, also complimentary, will include:

  • McCormick Museum open house (10 am to 1 pm)
  • Amy McCormick performance by Ellie Carlson (McCormick Museum Gold Theatre, 11 am)
  • Pony rides and petting zoo (12 to 3 pm)
  • Spinning by Esther’s Place Fiber Arts Studio (all day)
  • “History Alive” program on World War I (First Division Museum, 1 to 3 pm)
  • Water-balloon cannon (Parade Field, 10 am to 2 pm)
  • Birthday cake cutting (Visitors Center, noon)
  • Wreath-laying ceremony (Exedra, 3 pm)

Throughout the day, vintage games for children will be available on the Parade Field in addition to craft activities. Kids also are invited to make newspaper hats and birthday cards on the McCormick Museum’s south porch.

Park visitors can take turns on a hand-cranked ice cream freezer (11 am) or try their hand at butter making (1 pm). These activities recall life during Colonel McCormick’s time at Red Oaks Farm, as Cantigny was known originally.

McCormick, former editor and publisher of the Chicago Tribune, was born on July 30, 1880. He lived on the 500-acre country estate from 1920 until his passing in 1955. At 3 pm, McCormick Day will conclude with a wreath laying at the Exedra, the final resting place of Colonel McCormick and his first wife Amy. Cantigny Post 556 of the American Legion will conduct the brief ceremony.

The First Division Museum and Robert R. McCormick Museum will be open on McCormick Day from 10 am to 5 pm. Admission to both museums is free year-round. Visitors may also wish to stroll through Cantigny’s 30 acres of colorful gardens.

Inside the Cantigny Visitors Center, Le Jardin will serve lunch from 11 am to 2 pm, and Bertie’s (for ice cream, snacks and coffee drinks) will operate from 9 am to 4:30 pm.

Cantigny Park is open every day during summer from 7 am to dusk. A complete schedule of concerts, workshops and special events is posted online at

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