Did you know you do not have to go all the way to Egypt to experience the wonder and mystery of an Egyptian pyramid? As a matter of fact, there is one you can tour in northern Illinois near the town of Wadsworth, Illinois, in Lake County. The gold pyramid house was built in 1977 by Jim and Linda Onan, and they have used it as the home where they raised their children, as well as, periodically opening it up to the (very curious) public for tours. They were inspired to build the pyramid home after reading a University of Wisconsin study, suggesting that pyramids generate energy. In addition, Mr. Onan had a long-standing interest in all things Egyptology, such that when combined with his skills as a builder, and access to capitol, he is said to have built the largest 24 karat gold plated object in the world! This photo collage shows that water forms a moat that encircles the entire structure. The moat is 20 feet deep and spring-lake fed. Therefore, the pyramid could be said to be on an island, and you have to pass over a causeway to get into the home. The middle photos of the collage show the 80 stone sphinxes that line the driveway, as well as the "three-pyramid" garage (right center photo). Since Mr. Onan is said to have made his "fortune" by building garages, it is not surprising that HIS garage was built to hold FOUR automobiles. The collage also shows the 64 foot-tall and 200-ton statue of Ramesses II, near the entrance to the property. There is a tall, security fence, with large gates, that surrounds the property. So even if it is not open for tours on the day that you drive by, one can still take photos of the pyramid through that bars of the security fence.
In this photo collage, Linda Onan is showing our group, their family photos of the the children that were raised in the pyramid house. Don't you know that was a hoot for those kids, when explaining to their friends where they lived??!! Jim Onan is shown in these photos as he walks about the property, visits with guests, and unlocks the door to the recreated burial tomb of King Tutankhamen that is on the property. I was able to tour the simulated tomb, with someone who had actually been to REAL burial tombs in Egypt, and she said this recreation was as authentic-looking as the real thing.
The top left photo of this collage shows the "theater" where Onan greets entering tour groups. This area was originally meant to house a swimming pool, until water table problems interfered with that idea. Although there were signs posted inside saying "No Photography", Mr. Onan gave our group permission to take photographs of their living area. It was furnished much as any nice home might be, with the addition of NUMEROUS accessories/designs that would be called "Egyptian". The walls are hand-painted with hieroglyphs, as was the large window looking out towards the moat (upper right photo).
The property also contains a gift shop (middle right photo shows the interior, and the lower photo shows the exterior of the gift shop). When I was looking at the sarcophagus inside the recreated tomb of King Tut, I was reminded of the significance of the EMPTY tomb of Jesus Christ in Israel. The Bible verse in the gospels (Luke 24:34), relays the good news for Christ-followers, that "He is risen---He is risen, indeed!" If you would like to learn more about the Gold Pyramid House, and perhaps plan to go there for a tour, visit their website at http://www.goldpyramid.com/. For additional activities in the surrounding area, visit http://www.lakecounty.org/ You will be surprised to see how many treasures (Egyptian and otherwise) this scenic county has to offer! It is there you will find----miles of smiles! Tricia