A Guide to a Parents Weekend in the Elgin Area

With school in session and college has started- you may have a bit more time on your hands. What could be better than visiting your student in college for a family weekend? How about spending the time exploring the Elgin area and getting to know your student’s newest home? Come with us on our 3-day guide to spending time with your student!

Day 1 – Exploring the Elgin Area
Day 2 – Museums of Elgin
Day 3 – Entertainment of Elgin

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Day 1

Before getting started on exploring the Elgin area, check into where you’ll be staying. See a full list of accommodations.

Once you are all settled in and ready to explore, you need to start your day off with a trip to Herb’s Bakery to grab a bit of fuel in the local area. Herb’s Bakery contains enough variety of freshly baked goods that you will be sure to stop by next time you are in town- and bonus… they have coffee!

After breakfast, make sure to take some time and go on a cool stroll at the Fox River Trail. There you will find a beautiful view of the river and all of the historical buildings that come along with being in Elgin.

For lunch, perhaps check out Old Republic to try some freshly made burgers, sandwiches, salads, wraps, and pizza.

Once you are done with lunch, make sure to walk through Downtown Elgin and check out all of the shops. Stop by Meraki Market Hub and see their handmade items, home décor, boutique clothing, furniture, antiques, gifts, and so much more. If you like tea, make sure to head to Steep N’ Clay to check out their tea collections as well as their handmade pottery.

After your long day of walking, shopping, and exploring the heart of Elgin, make sure to settle into dinner at Harts Garage in Hampshire. From jalapeno poppers to their famous burgers, they have all you could ever want to eat in one place.

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Day 2

For the start of day 2, start off strong by going to the new restaurant Maple and Hash Pingree Grove! There they have eggs benedict, coffee, skillets, and even avocado toast to name a few.

While Day 1 was simply getting to know the Elgin Area- Day 2 is going to be about learning the history and appreciating the arts of the city. So, once you have eaten your breakfast, head to the Elgin History Museum- and don’t forget to ask about the #ElginButterCut.

And now- you are hungry for something simple and fresh. Well, look no further than Al’s Cafe. Inside one of Elgin’s historically registered buildings, Al’s is preparing home-style meals and classic malts that are simply amazing.

As the day starts to die down- keep on your museum track and check out the Village of Bartlett Museums as well as the Fox River Trolley Museum. At the trolley museum, you will be able to experience history directly and interact with real equipment used.

Once you are done taking your time and enjoying the Elgin Area, make sure to stop at Woodfire Pizza in West Dundee! Not only do they have incredible woodfired pizza- but they also have pasta and a to-die-for bread pudding!

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Day 3

As your weekend in Elgin comes to an end, you may wonder how you will spend the rest of your time with your student. Now, this is the day when you will have the most fun, as it is the last hurrah before you go!

To start, get breakfast at Arabica Cafe. There they have a wide rotating selection of freshly baked goods, coffee, sandwiches, and a fantastic environment to just talk and relax with your family. With their goal being “Making Elgin Delicious, one bite at a time,” how could it not be amazing!?

After breakfast, get your throwing arm ready because you are headed to the Spartan Axe Throwing in East Dundee. There you can spend some quality family time throwing axes and laughing about someone missing the target. Now that you have worked up an appetite, head on over to Carmina’s– a Mexican restaurant with some of the best enchiladas and burritos around.

With the day coming to a close, make sure to stop by Goebbert’s Farm in Pingree Grove! There they have a pumpkin patch, pumpkin train, pedal carts, and even a tennis ball shooting range. Spend the afternoon there and grab some fall treats such as cider donuts.

When you are done with the Goebberts festivities, make sure to stop by Elgin Public House for some classic American food consisting of burgers, chili, steak, and salads. And while you are at it, go to The Milk House for some homemade ice cream in countless flavors.

And that’s it, your weekend with your student was spent exploring the Elgin area, and spending time with the people you love is over. (But don’t forget to come back and Explore Elgin more!)

Visitor’s Guide

Get our Visitor’s Guide for all you need to know about the Elgin area.

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