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Route 66 News

Pontiac lands another museum

aceE9ygc4 The Route 66 town of Pontiac, Illinois, has gained another museum to its bulging portfolio — one that’s dedicated to basketball in the the Land of Lincoln that’s scheduled to open by summer 2016.

According to the Bloomington Pantagraph, the Basketball Museum of Illinois, run by the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association, will be built inside a former Kmart building on Vermillion Square.

The association originally chose Danville as the home for the museum, but those plans fell through. Pontiac beat about a half-dozen other cities in Illinois for the museum. Bruce Firchau is the association’s president (Disclosure: he coached my hometown’s team many years ago):

Their ideas included a museum with a theater, a conference room, a library and a gift shop besides exhibits of memorabilia and displays honoring prominent teams, coaches and players.

“When we open the doors, we will still be a work in progress,” admits Firchau, noting fundraising for the museum begins in March although pledges for donations are already being accepted.

One company has pledged $250,000, according to Firchau, who is accepting pledges at his email address: [email protected]

Pontiac already is home to the Pontiac-Oakland Automobile Museum and Resource Center, Illinois Route 66 Hall of Fame and Museum, Livingston County War Museum, International Walldog Mural and Sign Art Museum and Museum of Gilding Arts. The basketball museum would be No. 6.

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