Peoria, Illinois

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Peoria, Illinois

USA


Geographic Coordinates: 40.752000, -89.615400
Temperature Range: -40.0°C to 45.0°C (-40°F to 113°F)
Climate: Peoria has a humid subtropical climate with hot summers and cold winters. The city experiences precipitation throughout the year, with the highest amounts occurring in spring and summer. Tornadoes are also a common occurrence during the spring and summer months.
Population: 255718
Language: English

Peoria is a city situated in the central part of Illinois, United States. The city has a population of over 112, 000 people and stands as the seventh-largest city in Illinois. Peoria is renowned for its rich history, Diverse culture, And dynamic economy. One of the most significant attractions in Peoria is the Peoria Riverfront Museum. This museum showcases exhibits on art, Science, And history that are bound to captivate visitors of all ages. The museum also houses a planetarium that offers breathtaking views of the night sky. Wildlife Prairie Park is another popular attraction in Peoria.

This park spans over 2, 000 acres and features various species of wildlife native to Illinois such as bison, Elk, Wolves, And bears. Visitors can explore hiking trails or take guided tours through the park to see these animals up close. For sports enthusiasts visiting Peoria; there’s plenty to satisfy their interests as well. The city hosts several professional sports teams including minor league baseball team -the Peoria Chiefs- and minor league hockey team -the Peoria Rivermen. Peoria’s economy thrives on healthcare services with two major hospitals: OSF Saint Francis Medical Center and UnityPoint Health – Methodist | Proctor.

Caterpillar Inc., One of America’s largest manufacturers of construction equipment also calls this place home with its headquarters located here. The downtown area boasts an array of restaurants featuring local cuisine like deep-dish pizza from Agatucci’s Restaurant or German food from Hofbrauhaus Restaurant & Brewery which was opened by Chicago-based brewery chain Hofbräuhaus München back in 2013.

Peoria also hosts several annual events like The Grand Nationals; one of America’s largest antique car shows held every August at Expo Gardens; The Heartland Festival Orchestra which performs classical music throughout Central Illinois; The Steamboat Days Festival held annually during June where attendees enjoy carnival rides along with live music performances by various artists. Peoria is a city that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re interested in history, Culture, Or outdoor recreation, Peoria has got you covered. With its thriving economy and vibrant community spirit, Peoria is an excellent place to live or visit.



Important Landmarks

  1. Caterpillar Visitors Center
  2. Peoria Riverfront Museum
  3. Wildlife Prairie Park
  4. Grandview Drive Scenic Overlook
  5. Lakeview Museum of Arts & Sciences
  6. Dozer Park (home of the Peoria Chiefs)
  7. Bradley University Campus
  8. Spirit of Peoria paddleboat cruises on the Illinois River
  9. Luthy Botanical Garden
  10. Glen Oak Zoo

Primary Industries

  1. Healthcare: Peoria houses the OSF Saint Francis Medical Center, which is one of the largest hospitals in Illinois. Apart from this, there are several other healthcare facilities available in the area.
  2. Manufacturing: Caterpillar Inc., a global manufacturer of mining and construction equipment has its headquarters located in Peoria. Other manufacturing companies operating here include Komatsu America Corp., RLI Corp., and Maui Jim Sunglasses.
  3. Education: Bradley University and Illinois Central College are two renowned educational institutions situated in Peoria.
  4. Technology: Pearl Technology Holdings LLC, EPIC Systems Inc., are some of the technology companies that operate within Peoria.
  5. Agriculture: The surrounding region is known for its agricultural production, especially corn and soybeans.
  6. Tourism: Due to its proximity to the Illinois River, attractions like the Peoria Zoo and Wildlife Prairie Park make it a popular tourist destination.
  7. Retail: Several shopping centers like Northwoods Mall or The Shoppes at Grand Prairie can be found throughout the city.
  8. Finance: PNC Bank, Commerce Bank N.A., First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust Inc., Morton Community Bank, and CEFCU (Citizens Equity First Credit Union) have branches or headquarters situated within Peoria’s boundaries.

Noteable History

  1. The Peoria War – In 1813, during the War of 1812, a conflict broke out between American settlers in Peoria and Native American tribes who had been living in the area for generations. This conflict became known as the Peoria War.
  2. Abraham Lincoln – One of America’s most famous presidents, Abraham Lincoln visited Peoria on several occasions during his political career.
  3. Caterpillar Inc. – The world-renowned heavy equipment manufacturer Caterpillar Inc., was founded in Peoria in 1925.
  4. Richard Pryor – Comedian Richard Pryor was born in Peoria and spent his early years there before moving to California to pursue a career in entertainment.
  5. Betty Friedan – Feminist author Betty Friedan grew up in Peoria and attended high school there before going on to become an influential figure in the women’s rights movement.
  6. Bradley University – Bradley University is located in Peoria and has been ranked among the top universities in the Midwest by U.S News & World Report.
  7. Riverfront Park District- In recent years, efforts have been made to revitalize downtown Peoria through projects like Riverfront Park District which includes attractions like museums, restaurants, shopping centers etc.
  8. Civic Center- The Civic Center is one of Illinois’ largest convention centers which hosts various events throughout every year including concerts etc.
  9. People’s Brewing Company- People’s Brewing Company was established after prohibition ended by Joseph Knollenberg who started brewing beer from his basement at home; later he opened up a brewery that turned into one of Illinois’ biggest breweries until it closed down after World War II.
  10. Mary Frances Thompson- Mary Frances Thompson was an African-American woman who owned her own catering business in Peoria, Illinois. She was known for her amazing cooking and her business was one of the most successful in the area.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Peoria Riverfront Museum
  2. Caterpillar Visitors Center
  3. Sculpture Walk Peoria
  4. African American Hall of Fame Museum
  5. Wheels O’ Time Museum
  6. Pettengill-Morron House Museum
  7. Grandview Drive and Park
  8. Bradley University Galleries
  9. Forest Park Nature Center
  10. John C Flanagan House Museum


Sports Teams

  1. Peoria Chiefs: The Peoria Chiefs are a minor league baseball team that plays in the Midwest League. They have been playing in Peoria since 1983 and have won three championships.
  2. Bradley Braves: The Bradley Braves are the athletic teams of Bradley University, located in Peoria. They compete in NCAA Division I and have a rich history of success, particularly in basketball.
  3. Peoria Rivermen: The Peoria Rivermen are a minor league ice hockey team that plays in the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL). They have been playing in Peoria since 1982 and have won multiple championships.
  4. Illinois Central College Cougars: The Illinois Central College Cougars are the athletic teams of Illinois Central College, located in East Peoria. They compete at the junior college level and offer a variety of sports programs.
  5. Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame: While not a sports team itself, the Greater Peoria Sports Hall of Fame celebrates the accomplishments of local athletes and coaches who have made significant contributions to their respective sports over time.


Cultural Events

  1. Peoria Irish Fest is a celebration of Irish culture that features live music, dance performances, food and drink.
  2. RiverFront Market is a weekly farmers market that offers local produce, crafts and live entertainment.
  3. Peoria Heights Art Fair is an annual event that showcases the works of local artists and artisans.
  4. Illinois Blues Festival is a two-day festival that celebrates blues music with performances by both local and national artists.
  5. Heart of Illinois Fair is an annual fair featuring carnival rides, games, food vendors and live entertainment.
  6. Oktoberfest Peoria is a celebration of German culture that offers traditional food, beer and music.
  7. Santa Claus Parade is an annual parade featuring Santa Claus himself along with floats, marching bands and other holiday-themed attractions.
  8. Fine Art Fair at Junction City Shopping Center is an art fair showcasing the works of local artists in various mediums such as painting, sculpture and photography.
  9. African American Heritage Festival celebrates African American culture through cultural foods like jerk chicken to dance performances from different parts of Africa.
  10. Prairie Folklore Theatre offers plays celebrating the history of Illinois through humor in an outdoor setting.

Cuisine

  • The Chef and the Baker – known for their delicious sandwiches, salads, and baked goods.
  • One World Cafe – offers a variety of international cuisine such as Thai, Indian, and Mediterranean.
  • Jim’s Steakhouse – a classic steakhouse with a retro atmosphere serving up juicy steaks and seafood.
  • Khao Laam Thai Restaurant – authentic Thai food with generous portions and flavorful dishes.
  • Louie’s Sterling Family Restaurant – serves American comfort food such as burgers, sandwiches, and breakfast items.
  • Cracked Pepper Catering & Bakery – offers gourmet sandwiches, soups, salads along with freshly baked breads.
  • Thanh Linh Vietnamese Cuisine- offers authentic Vietnamese dishes like pho noodle soup or banh mi sandwich.
  • Two25- A stylish restaurant that features creative American fare using locally sourced ingredients.
  • Tacology 101- Offers tacos made from scratch with fresh ingredients including meats like carnitas or barbacoa.
  • Biaggi’s Ristorante Italiano- Offers classic Italian dishes like pasta or pizza made from scratch using the freshest ingredients.

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Lake Pleasant Regional Park offers boating, fishing, hiking, and camping.
    2. Rio Vista Community Park features a skate park, sports fields, and playgrounds.
    3. Pioneer Community Park includes a splash pad, basketball courts, and picnic areas.
    4. Peoria Sports Complex hosts spring training for MLB teams and other sporting events.
    5. New River Trail System provides hiking and biking trails along the New River.
    6. Sunrise Mountain Preserve offers hiking trails with scenic views of the city.
    7. Foothills Recreation & Aquatics Center features indoor/outdoor pools, fitness classes, and sports courts.
    8. Sahuaro Ranch Historic Area includes historic buildings from the early 1900s and walking paths through gardens.
    9. West Wing Mountain Preserve offers Hiking Trails with scenic views of Peoria.
    10. Pioneer Living History Museum is a museum dedicated to preserving pioneer history with interactive exhibits for visitors to experience what life was like in past centuries in Arizona.

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