Our Mission Statement
The "Illinois Rock & Roll Museum on Route 66" is a public charity 501c3 nonprofit organization that exists to preserve the history of musicians and bands with ties to Illinois while educating visitors about our rich music history. Our mission will meet our goals through its operation of a world-class museum that collects, preserves and exhibits artifacts of artists who have reached national and international recognition, and by providing enlightening educational programs.
Our Vision for the Museum
Illinois has a rich musical heritage that has influenced rock and roll artists across the globe. Musicians from Rockford to Chicago, Champaign to downstate Illinois have played an integral part of the music scene for decades creating music that transcends many genres.
What you will see
To pay tribute to their contribution and influence, we are proposing the creation of the Illinois Rock & Roll Museum on Route 66. Originally an idea for an exhibit called “Route 66: The Road to Rock,” this permanent museum will tell the story of these musicians and bands through displays of their memorabilia and artifacts including instruments, records, photographs, clothing, stage props, sheet music and lyrics, as well as their recordings.
The national Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum in Cleveland, Ohio only displays a small sampling of artifacts of Illinois artists due to space restrictions. This museum would allow the opportunity for a more robust Illinois-focused exhibition in our region. In addition to the permanent exhibits, the opportunity also exists for the creation of seasonal special exhibits that highlight specific artists, events or milestones in Illinois rock and roll.
What you will hear
Audio and visual presentations of performances and artist interviews will capture their unique contributions to rock and roll. Visitors to the proposed exhibit will take a musical journey from the early jazz and blues influences to the birth and rise of rock and roll, and the emergence of Illinois artists whose influences have had significant impact, such as Chicago, Cheap Trick, Styx, The Buckinghams, REO Speedwagon, and The Cryan’ Shames, among many others. This unique, one-of-a-kind exhibit will honor and preserve their contributions, while providing visitors with a dynamic and interactive educational experience.
What you will experience
From jam sessions and vinyl listening stations, musical story times and crafts, school tours, networking and business skills for artists, our programs and workshops will connect and support musicians and music lovers of all ages in Illinois and around the world. The Illinois Rock & Roll Museum on Route 66 spans decades upon decades and transcend many genres of music. From blues and jazz, to rock and rap. It is our goal to recognize many players, bands, and other influences into our musical world from Illinois.
Once the exhibit is open, you will be able to visit us to see many artifacts from the musical community. A chance to let memories flow and to pay tribute to those that gave us the music we all love.
Supporting our communities
The Illinois Rock & Roll Museum is dedicated to supporting local musicians, performers, and others in the music industry and performing arts in the form of scholarships, donations, and an endowment to support the arts in Illinois.
The Museum also has strong potential to provide our city of Joliet with the opportunity to benefit from strong revenue generation. It will provide positive economic impact resulting from increased tourism dollars spent in the region, funding from corporate sponsorship, donor contributions, advertising opportunities, and new tourism partnerships.