Picture of children on a tour of district looking at aquarium in administration building lobby

Educational Tours

Tours to begin September of 2021

Have your kids ever wondered what happens to the dirty water that is flushed down the toilet? Maybe you’ve even wondered how wastewater is treated before it’s put back into the environment. The truth is that water reclamation is a long, complex process. Wastewater must pass through numerous complex systems before being returned to the environment, and trying to understand the process can be confusing.  It is a true science!

That’s why Four Rivers Sanitation Authority offers free plant tours! Tours are open to students, scouts, and anyone interested in the wastewater treatment process. A guide will lead your group through the treatment plant, explain the reclamation process, and answer any questions the group may have.  Open group tours are available on the first and third Wednesday of every month. Reservations for open tours are taken on a first to call or email, first to reserve basis.   All open tours  begin at 8:00 am and conclude at 11:00 am.  Space is limited to 15 persons per tour.  Educators, students, scouts or community groups are invited to schedule a private tour.  To schedule a tour or reserve your spot for an open tour, call 815-387-7645 or contact us by e-mail.

All Tour guest will be required to wear tennis type walking shoes, long pants, and shirts.

At this time Four Rivers is continuing to practice social distancing and masks are required for all visitors.

For a tour of the plant in photos CLICK HERE.

Don’t have time for a guided tour?  Check out our interactive plant model!

picture of interactive model of district waste water treatment plant

Our interactive plant model shows each step of the water reclamation process. Being able to see the movement of the water through the treatment plant is an effective learning tool for all ages. The interactive model is available to the public in our Graceffa Administration Building located at 3501 Kishwaukee Street, Monday through Friday (Except Holidays) from 8:00 A.M. to 4:30 P.M.

The Four Rivers Sanitation Authority (FRSA) uses this interactive plant layout model to explain to school groups, customers, and the general public the sequential steps in processing solid and liquid waste as well as generating energy as a by-product of that process.

The model has many advantages. The viewer can grasp the overall picture in one viewing. The sequential path of each of three processes (liquid, solids, and energy) is clearly shown with three different colors of chase lights. Each of the buildings and tanks has a light that comes on when its labeled button on the control panel is pressed. Even before the lights are activated, the buildings and tanks have identifying labels next to them. All of this makes the model useful at any time of the day.

If you are in a guided tour, FRSA personnel explains the treatment plant processes and answers questions.

picture of lights and tanks on district interactive model

The interactive control board highlights three sequential processes with over 600 blue (liquid), yellow (solid), or red (energy) chase lights.

picture of energy lights on interactive district plant model

The energy (red chase lights) is created from the methane gas by-product of the waste processing.

close up of interactive model control board

This is a close up of part of the control board.

picture of building on district interactive model

Each of the individual buildings and tanks has a label.