One Normal Plaza

One Normal Plaza History
One Normal Plaza originally started as the Illinois Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Children’s home and school in 1865 to house and care for orphans of the Civil War. It later housed orphaned children whose father served in any war. Several buildings were built including cottages for young children, a dormitory-like building for older youths, a recreation center and administration buildings. The property was abandoned by the state and in 1983 the property was sold to a corporation known as One Normal Plaza, Inc. for $1.753 million for all 68 acres including the buildings. Open space surrounding the buildings were leased to the Town of Normal to use for recreation activities such as football, volleyball and soccer. In 1992, Normal officially bought 22 acres of the land to turn into a public park after One Normal Plaza, Inc. filed for bankruptcy. They also acquired the old food service building which was turned into an indoor recreation facility.

Located at: 601 E. Lincoln St.

• Restrooms
• Picnic Shelters
• Picnic Tables
• Grills
• Playground
• Ballfield
• Football
• Soccer
• In-Line Hockey Rink  
• Community Garden 
Food Forest
Soccer Fields