Located near downtown Janesville, the Rock County Historical Society campus features a number of historical buildings integral to Rock County’s unique history: the Lincoln-Tallman House, Frances Willard Schoolhouse, Wilson King Stonehouse, Helen Jeffris Wood Museum Center, and the Tallman Carriage House. Also featured on the RCHS campus is the Charles Tallman Archives, where members of the community are welcome to research local history.
The Society offers a variety of tours to cater to visitor interests. The Traditional Tour of the Lincoln-Tallman House covers the first and second floors of the home and is recommended for first-time visitors. Tallman’s Technologies Tour focuses on the cutting-edge amenities that were available in the home, such as a functioning intercom system, running water, and gas lighting. The Help Wanted Tour is an immersive experience where visitors learn about Victorian life through the eyes of the servants as they try their hand at various chores throughout the house.
Fresh produce, meats, cheese, eggs, honey, baked goods, plants, cut flowers, artisan gifts from Wisconsin and Rock County can be found at the Janesville Farmer's Market! Open Saturdays from 8 am - 1 pm, May through October, in downtown Janesville with plenty of free public parking.
The market website provides a list of vendors each week, a map of the market, and also has helpful recipes and videos on long term storage. And if you're unsure of how to prepare and cook an item, just ask! The market also accepts SNAP benefits. Other helpful hints include: bring your own bag, small bills and change, and take your time! It is a fun, lively atmosphere with live music, enjoy it!
Rotary Botanical Gardens has 20-acres filled with beautiful plants in 24 different styled gardens located on Palmer Drive in Janesville. Their garden styles are unique and internationally themed. They have won awards in landscape design and have been recognized for their Japanese garden. The Gardens host weddings and are a popular destination for scenic pictures as well as offering several programs and classes for children to adults that are fun and educational. They host an annual Holiday Light Show in December covering the Gardens in brilliant lights and holiday-themed decorations to create a magnificent winter wonderland. Guided tours are available for visitors as well as a gift shop featuring local artisans’ work.
The Hedberg Public Library is located downtown and offers a large collection of over 150,000 books, 14,000 DVDs, 12,000 music CDs, and many other materials including magazines, newspapers, and more. In addition to this wide collection, they offer Interlibrary loans through other Wisconsin public libraries. The Hedberg Public Library displays new exhibits every month from local hobbyists and groups such as the Janesville Senior Center. A list of displays can be found here.
The library has many events for kids, teens, and adults. The events for children, ranging from book readings to educational programs to battle of the bands among many others, are hosted by the library. They have many opportunities for adults including free online 6-week classes in a variety of subjects, as well as in-person computer classes and book groups.