Destination Illinois: Caterpillar Visitors Center

Otto I. Eovaldi

PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — The Caterpillar Visitors Center is located on the Peoria Riverfront, near the Peoria Riverfront Museum.

The center opened in 2012 and has welcomed visitors from every state and more than 40 countries.

Inside is a whole world painted Caterpillar yellow. It’s part historical museum, part hands-on activity, and some other fun stuff. 

This may appear to be a Caterpillar 797F mining truck. One of the largest dump trucks in the world, it can carry 400 tons of ore, but inside one is a theater.

“Our guests are always amazed at the size of the 797-mining truck, but seeing it in person, all two and a half stories of it is pretty impressive. Although you can’t drive our equipment, you can test your skills on our simulators, and now through the end of the year, we’re featuring our CAT Trials exhibit. It’s been a hit as well,” said Caterpillar Spokesperson Susan Morton.

Part of that Cat Trials exhibit is the world’s largest game of Jenga. The Caterpillar Visitors Center will show you how they were stacked using CAT machines to hoist and slide the 660-pound wood blocks.

When you’re through seeing everything, there are always CAT souvenirs available on-site.

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