Explore & Experience Woodstock

Welcome to the City of Woodstock, Illinois, in McHenry county.

Woodstock originally started out as Centerville, due to its central location within McHenry County after the county was split to form McHenry and Lake Counties. Subsequently, the county seat was moved from McHenry to Centerville in 1844. The name was then changed to Woodstock in 1845, and the Village of Woodstock was incorporated in 1852.

Early growth came in part from the Chicago & North Western Railroad, which ran through Woodstock in 1855 and helped grow the local agricultural business as well as industry. Post-Civil War growth further helped prompt the move from village to city status in 1873.

Woodstock became known for, of all things, typewriters. City officials donated empty factory buildings in 1896 for the manufacture of the Oliver Typewriter. Then in 1910, the Emerson Typewriter Company also moved to Woodstock to produce typewriters, which in 1919 became the Woodstock Typewriter Company.

Woodstock also has a history in the arts. Orson Welles considered it, if any place was, his "hometown" due to his time at the then Todd School for Boys. Orson Welles also made his American debut as a professional theatre director at the Woodstock Opera House.

Not to be outdone by the stage, Woodstock also served as a backdrop for several scenes from the movie Planes, Trains, and Automobiles. This screen appearance also led to being recommended as the location for another famous movie you may have seen over and over and over again, Groundhog Day.

Woodstock also plays another entertaining role, serving as the home of Chester Gould, the creator of "Dick Tracy," who lived on a farm outside Woodstock in what would later become the Village of Bull Valley.

Woodstock also plays another entertaining role, also serving as the home of Chester Gould, the creator of Dick Tracy," who lived on a farm outside Woodstock in an area that would later become part of the Village of Bull Valley.

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  • Owner Claimed Listing
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Dining & Entertainment

Kishwaukee Brewing Company

BBQ King Smokehouse – Woodstock

Woodstock Opera House

Health & Beauty

My Chiropractic Center

Evolve Chiropractic – Woodstock

Shopping

The Green Spot

Services & Organizations

Dan’s Detailing 2


Event Calendar

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NEW!

A Very Merry Huntley Library Open House

Magazine

Antique fire engine.
By Brian R. Brown
Get your dose of Christmas spirit with these photos from downtown Crystal Lake for the Festival of Lights Parade, tree lighting, arrival of Santa, and a stroll down Christmas Tree Lane.
Christmas trees tagged at the farm.
By Brian R. Brown
Whether you've ever had a real Christmas tree or not, our guide is here to help you navigate the challenges of having real trees. Be sure to check out our list of local Christmas tree farms.
Empty plate with fork and spoon.
By Brian R. Brown
We've compiled a guide for McHenry County food pantries, broken out by city. No one in our community should have to battle hunger. We hope this guide will prove helpful if you yourself or someone you know needs to utilize these services, or if you would like to help out
Shiny ornaments and lights on Christmas tree.
By Brian R. Brown
Looking for Christmas Tree Lighting near you? Craving a holiday light display or show? We've got you covered...at least if you're in McHenry County. Check out our guide to the Christmas tree lighting events & holiday light displays around McHenry County.
Visiting with Santa Claus.
By Brian R. Brown
He knows whether you've been naughty or nice, but here's a last chance to put in a good word! Grab the kids and check our guide for snapping some pictures with Santa.
Meadowdale Raceway Silo.
By Brian R. Brown
If you close your eyes, you can almost hear the roar of the engines as the cars worked their way around Meadowdale Raceway. Today though, you'll mostly hear some traffic from Hwy 31, the occasional sounds of mountain bikers, and nature. But you can still explore the old track.