Joliet, Illinois: Site of World's First Dairy Queen

According to DQ historians, a humble storefront in Joliet on old Route 66 was the site of the World's First Dairy Queen.
501 N. Chicago St., Joliet, IL
North side of downtown. On the west side of Hwy 53/N. Chicago St., at the intersection of Ohio St. It's currently a bright yellow building housing Paisano Auto Insurance. A small, oval plaque mounted to the left side of the front of the building identifies it as the "Original Dairy Queen."
Save to My Sights

Visitor Tips and News About Site of World's First Dairy Queen

Reports and tips from visitors and Roadside America mobile tipsters. Some tips may not be verified. Submit your own tip.

Dairy Queen plaque.

First Dairy Queen

The Hispanic church has changed to an auto insurance agency within the original DQ building.

[Jon Morgan, 10/11/2015]
Site of World's First Dairy Queen

Just an advisory, there is a Hispanic church in this building now...there is a small plaque on the side of the building stating that DQ was once there.

[Lois, 07/11/2013]

First Dairy Queen.

Site of World's First Dairy Queen

The president and CEO of Dairy Queen International was in Joliet as landmark status was conferred on the the building that housed the world's first DQ. Some believe that a store in Kankakee deserves the honor, but Dairy Queen historians say that the Joliet location -- which opened June 22, 1940 -- was the first to use the Dairy Queen name. Today even the smallest American towns, bypassed by other fast food chains, usually have at least one DQ. Joliet has three, but none of them are in the original building, which is now a storefront church and no longer identified as a Dairy Queen. To aid in its recognition, the building will have an historical plaque placed by Joliet, and DQ will install a plaque in the sidewalk.

[ Team, 05/24/2011]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Old Joliet Prison ParkOld Joliet Prison Park, Joliet, IL - < 1 mi.
Lockport PowerhouseLockport Powerhouse, Lockport, IL - 3 mi.
Bluesmobile on a StickBluesmobile on a Stick, Joliet, IL - 4 mi.
In the region:
Plano's 4,000 lb. Bomb, Plano, IL - 25 mi.

Latest Tips Across Roadside America

Catch up on the latest discoveries from the road.

Explore Thousands of Oddball Tourist Attractions!

Unique destinations in the U.S. and Canada are our special obsession. Use our attraction recommendation and maps to plan your next road trip.

November 26, 2015

My Sights

Save Cool Vacation Destinations!

Try My Sights

Roadside America app
Roadside Presidents app

Illinois Latest Tips and Stories

Latest Visitor Tips

Sight of the Week

Sight of the Week

John Dillinger Museum, Crown Point, Indiana (Nov 23-29, 2015)

SotW Archive

USA and Canada Tips and Stories

More Sightings

Sightings. Arrives without warning. Leaves no burn marks. A free newsletter from Subscribe now! Hotel & Motel Finder

Special online rates for hotels & motels.

Book Online Now