The Round House Center is an approximate 64,400 square foot brick and block structure with concrete floors, situated on approximately four acres of land. The original structure was built in 1905 by the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad (the name was later changed to the Burlington Northern Railroad) as a round house and adjacent office space. The round house portion is two story, and was used to store and repair steam locomotives. The single story element was and continues to be used as office space, break rooms, shops, and general storage areas.
In the 1950’s, the property was converted to a farm implement store and operated as such for nearly ten years, until Jefferson Smurfit (formerly Alton Box) purchased the property and converted it into a manufacturing plant. Jefferson Smurfit later built a new facility in Beardstown’s industrial park and planned on moving to this plant by July 1997. The roof and the office areas were severely damaged during a fire and the Round House sat vacant for several years.
In November, 2009 John and Alecia (Lish) Crowe became the new owners of the Round House Center. Their plan was to open the Round House as an event center, but before the doors could open to the public, the building needed a major renovation. A new roof was added first, along with new windows and doors. Extensive soda blasting was done to restore the brick walls inside the rooms that would become the Electric Owl Lounge and the Banquet Hall. A 50 foot bar was built and a stage was added to provide a unique and historical entertainment space. The renovations still continue, so there is always something new to see during every visit.