Fall Festival

Southminster Presbyterian Church | Glen Ellyn, Ill.


Includes fall crafts, games, face painting, treats, a cookie/candy walk and bobbing for donuts. Costumes are optional (nothing scary or violent please) or come as you are.

When: 3-5 p.m.
Cost: Free

Tales and Treasures

Morton Arboretum | Lisle, Ill.

New exhibit showcases 50 rare and unique objects from the Sterling Morton Library's collections. The artifacts include a collection of butterflies that is more than 100 years old, an Eskimo bone carving, original woodblocks, and metal sculptures. Explore a modern cabinet of curiosities, with drawers that pull out and doors that open to reveal objects and interactive games, share your vision of a library in 50 years, and take part in a library-wide scavenger hunt.

Cost: Free with admission

Dinosaurs Alive!

Brookfield Zoo | Brookfield, Ill.

Features supersized animatronic dinosaurs, including favorites like Stegosaurus and Triceratops, as well as obscure dinosaur species with unusual characteristics, like feathers. Shantungosaurus-the largest dinosaur to walk on two legs-stands at more than 20 feet tall and 50 feet long in Roosevelt Fountain, and a tented showcase highlights the most recent paleontological findings that birds evolved from dinosaurs. In addition, guests will learn how dinosaurs are relevant to today's world and how changes in climate may have led to their extinction, plus about prehistoric flowers and plants .

Cost: $5, $3 kids 3-11, free kids 2 and under, plus zoo admission.

Start With A Sketch Exhibition

Geneva History Center | Geneva, Ill.

Exhibition highlighting the culture of illustration through the talented cartoonists, illustrators and voice actors connected to the Geneva community. Features well-known artists such as Daws Butler, the voice of Yogi Bear and many Hanna Barbera characters, along with Chester Gould, creator of the Dick Tracy comic strip.

Cost: Donations accepted

Boo! at the Zoo

Brookfield, Ill.

A not-so-scary fun-filled event features activities for the entire family. Zoogoers can take a spin on the Haunted Carousel, watch professional pumpkin carving demonstrations, hop on a hayride, and show off their costumes in the costume parade and showcase. Plus, a corn maze, special Zoo Chats, pumpkin treats for the animals, cookie decorating, scarecrow-building and other activities.

When: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 19-20 and 26-27
Cost: Free with zoo admission

Pumpkin Weekends

Blackberry Farm | Aurora, Ill.

Blackberry Farm will be decorated in the spirit of pumpkin season. A picnic area will feature an assortment of pumpkins for purchase, and a decorating station with painting supplies is provided. Plus, carousel rides, hay wagon rides and tours on the "Pumpkin Train." A magic show will be featured Oct. 13, with the Trick-or-Treat Walk and Costume Contest on Oct. 20 (noon to 3 p.m.).

When: 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Cost: $5

Pumpkin Fest

Cosley Zoo | Wheaton, Ill.

Breathe in the crisp fall air as you enter the zoo through a cornstalk lined path, hear the crunch of the leaves underneath your feet, listen to the children conquering the straw pyramid or enjoy the sight of thousands of pumpkins on display. Nature-made fall decorations, including pumpkins, gourds and corn stalks, available to purchase.

When: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cost: Regular admission; cost of pumpkins varies

The Pumpkin Trolley

Fox River Trolley Museum | South Elgin, Ill.

Ride an old-time electric trolley to the Pumpkin Patch and choose a pumpkin. Pumpkins are $2 in addition to the fare. Oct. 12-13, 19-20.

When: 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cost: $4, $3 seniors, $2 kids 3-11, free under 3

Halloween Haunted Ghost Story Train

Fox River Trolley Museum | South Elgin, Ill.

A spooky ride on a "haunted" trolley along the Fox River to a campfire along the shore of the Fox complete with ghost stories, hot chocolate and s'mores. Advance reservations required at www.foxtrolley.org/reservations.html. Oct. 19-20, 26-27.

Cost: Call for cost

Fall Color Festival

Lisle, Ill.

Enjoy the fall colors and check out Scarecrow Trail around the lake. Plus, taste brats, build-your-own taffy apples and other food and beverages available for purchase. Festival kicks off with the Fall Color 5K Run & Walk and Kid's Dash on Sunday, Oct. 6 at 8 a.m.

Cost: Free with admission

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