Genealogy Spouse

Fort Wayne is home to The Genealogy Center, the nation's second-largest genealogy center, found in the downtown branch of the Allen County Public Library. While the library attracts many budding researchers, other family members along for the trip may not be as interested in the family tree. Lucky for you, Fort Wayne is home to many affordable attractions and activities within walking distance of The Genealogy Center. Be sure to also check if any museums offer reciprocity with museum memberships in your hometown.

Museums and Attractions

1. The closest museum to the library is the Fort Wayne Firefighter's Museum, home to information and exhibitions about Fort Wayne's fire department. The museum is located in the historic Engine House No. 3, which served as a city fire station until the 1970s.

Botanical Conservatory - Tropical Garden

2. To see luscious gardens any time of year, stop by the Botanical Conservatory to be transported to see gardens of the world. Permanent gardens include the Tropical and Desert Gardens, and the Showcase Garden features four different exhibitions throughout the year, including a live butterfly exhibit from April - June. 

FWMoA - Repose in Amber

3. Art lovers should be sure to stop at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art to see American and other art from the 1800s to the present as well as a dedicated glass wing showing nearly 400 stunning glass sculptures. After you finish at the art museum, cross the street and stop by Artlink, a gallery full of local art and unique pieces.

Science on a Sphere at Science Central

4. Spend an afternoon at Science Central, full of hands-on fun and learning. Test your imagination (and the rules of gravity!) in a hands-on laboratory at Science Central. With more than 200 exhibits, Science Central is an attraction full of hands-on fun and learning perfect for the whole family - complete with a 2-story indoor slide.

Plan a Visit During a Special Event

Plan your visit around one of Fort Wayne's many events and summer festivals, which kick off in June with Arab Fest, Germanfest, and Greekfest. Plus, be sure to catch a TinCaps baseball game at Parkview Field. Rated as the #1 Minor League Ballpark Experience in the country, a TinCaps game is the perfect end to a day of research!

Germanfest Dancers at Headwaters Park in Fort Wayne


Take an ARCH or Heritage Trail walking tour. Explore downtown and areas nearby led by professional tour guides to learn about the history and architecture of Fort Wayne. Call ahead to make a reservation. Or explore the history of Fort Wayne on your own, with the free Allen County Historic Sites mobile pass where you can listen to the stories of the area's historic stories at more than 100 locations.

Allen County Courthouse Rotunda

A can't-miss historic location in Fort Wayne is the Allen County Courthouse on the National Registry of Historic Places. The Courthouse has self-guided or docent-led tours; contact the Courthouse directly to schedule.

While strolling downtown, you may also enjoy stopping for a selfie at one of our many murals or pieces of public art. Sign up for the free Public Art Trail mobile pass to check in and earn prizes along the way. 

For even more history, stop by The History Center, located in Fort Wayne's City Hall building, constructed in 1893. 

Lastly, don't forget to leave time to visit the Old Fort, a replica of the 1815 fort built by Major John Whistler. The Old Fort grounds are open to visitors every day. 

Embassy Theatre Blog Header


Downtown Fort Wayne is home to a great art scene with performances all year round. Before you get to Fort Wayne, check our online calendar to see what concerts, shows, and other events are taking place. Stop by the Embassy Theatre for famous musicals, and concerts, and other live shows. The stunning historic building alone makes every event memorable. Over on the Fort Wayne Arts Campus, you can catch a show performed by the Fort Wayne Civic TheatreFort Wayne Ballet, or Fort Wayne Dance Collective. More community theater is available at the First Presbyterian Theater.

Dad and daughter kayaking on the St. Marys River at Promenade Park in Fort Wayne


There are plenty of ways to be active in Fort Wayne. Rent a bike or kayak from Fort Wayne Outfitters and Bike Depot. Walk or bike on the Rivergreenway or Fort Wayne Trails - you can get trail maps at the Visitors Center or sign up for the free Hikes, Bikes, & Paddles Fort Wayne Outdoor Pass mobile pass for itineraries and earn prizes as you check in along the way. Stop by Headwaters Park to stroll or play in the splash pad, see the flowers at Freimann Square, or experience Promenade Park at Riverfront Fort Wayne

Fun downtown

Live local and stop by the Farmers Market. In the summer, stop by the library's plaza to hear local music as part of Rock the Plaza on Saturday evenings.

Nawa Asian Cuisine


Bring your appetite to Fort Wayne! A local favorite with history is Cindy's Diner, a historic valentine diner that "serves the world... fifteen at a time," or Coney Island. On Calhoun Street, stop at the Dash-In or 816 Pint & Slice. For a larger meal, try Mad Anthony Brewing Company, Nawa, or Shigs in Pit Barbeque.

Girl with Sea Lion at Fort Wayne Children's Zoo

If you have a car 

If you are feeling even more adventurous, make the 10 minute drive to the Fort Wayne Children's Zoo. A must-see on any visit to Fort Wayne, the nationally-ranked Fort Wayne Children's Zoo offers 40 acres of interactive activities, animals, and rides for you and your family to explore the wild!

If you're looking for a sweet treat with a special Fort Wayne experience, take a DeBrand chocolate tour. Learn about the history of the company and see how they make their delicious chocolate (and get credit for their delicious chocolates in their shop).

Browse local boutiques, antiques, department stores, and more with a stop to Jefferson Pointe outdoor shopping center or Glenbrook Square Mall for local and national favorites.