on Wednesday, March 1, 2017
You don’t have to be a John Deere enthusiast to enjoy and appreciate the rich history of John Deere and its nearly 100-year legacy in the Waterloo area. Fans of all ages can walk away from any one of Waterloo's four John Deere attractions and experience something new for the first or maybe fifteenth time.
So whether you have just a few short hours to explore or you’re planning a day or even weekend getaway to Waterloo, make sure these John Deere attractions are on your list.
They’re fun, they're educational, and they're all FREE!
John Deere Tractor & Engine Museum, Waterloo
Tractor & Engine MuseumThe newest of the John Deere attractions, the John Deere Tractor & Engine Museum highlights the history of tractor and engine design and manufacturing in the Cedar Valley. The historic building that now houses the museum was built in 1941 and was the site of the very first John Deere tractor factory. In addition, it includes a collection of rare John Deere artifacts, rotating temporary exhibits, videos and plenty of hands-on fun for kids and adults. While you’re there, don’t forget to stop by the museum store for a wide selection of John Deere apparel, toys and collectibles.
500 Westfield Ave(319) 292-6126 (museum)(319) 292-5669 (store)Hours: Mon-Sat 9am-5pm; Sun Noon-4pm
Tractor Cab Assembly OperationsIf you’re someone who likes to see how things come together from start to finish, we highly recommend a tour of Tractor Cab Assembly Operations. Here they build a variety of John Deere tractors – 6R, 7R, 8R/8RT and 9R/9RT/9RX Series Tractors to be exact. Hop aboard a trolley and watch as tractors are assembled, painted and made ready for the field. After your guided tour, be sure to stop by their gift shop for all things John Deere.
3500 E Donald StReservations: (319) 292-7668 or toll free (888) 453-5804Tour Schedule: Mon-Fri 8am, 10am, 1pm (tour lasts 1.5 hrs)
Engine WorksUnfinished engine blocks, heads and crankshafts are just a few of the many things you’ll see on your behind-the-scenes tour of Engine Works. Watch as these materials are precision-machined and assembled into John Deere diesel engines as well as power centers for other manufacturers.
3801 W Ridgeway AveReservations: (319) 292-5347Tour Schedule: Mon-Fri 9:30am, 1pm (tour lasts 1.5 hrs)
Drivetrain OperationsIt takes a lot to build these big machines and John Deere does it in some of the most modern and efficient factories. At Drivetrain Operations, cast iron machining and drivetrain assembly take place for the 6R – 9R series of wheel and track tractors for final assembly in Waterloo and beyond.
400 Westfield AveReservations: (319) 292-7668 or toll free (888) 453-5804Tour Schedule: Mon-Fri 1pm (by reservation only – tour lasts 1.5 hrs)
A Few Tips When Booking Tours:
John Deere Pavilion, Moline
If you’re thinking of extending your road trip even longer, we encourage you to visit several other John Deere attractions. The John Deere Historic Site, John Deere Pavilion, and Deere & Company World Headquarters are all located in and around Moline, Illinois (approx 2-3 hr drive from Waterloo). Don't hesitate to give our friends at the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau a call if you need assistance while you're there.
- Beth Keeney, Waterloo Convention & Visitors BureauPhoto Credit: John Deere.