Halloween Fun at the Chicago Botanic Gardens

The Chicago Botanic Gardens is once again celebrating fall in a spoktacular way the return of three popular family events:

Pooch Parade at Botanic Gardens
Photo Credit © Chicago Botanic Garden

Spooky Pooch Parade

Saturday October 18 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
The garden goes to the dogs for this fun day, the only day dogs are allowed admission! Dogs dress up in costume and mingle in the Krasberg Rose Garden before marching in a special pooch parade. WBBM-TV Meteorologist Ed Curran will serve as the master of ceremonies for the event and costume contest. Judges include:

  • WBEZ Worldview Host Jerome McDonnell
  • Barbara Brotman of the Chicago Tribune
  • LeAnn Trotter of WMAQ-TV
  • Susan Randstrom of Chicagoland gardening
  • Janice Brown of Chicagoland Tails Magazine

There will be nonprofit organizations and special vendors on hand to share information and sell dog related products. All dogs need to register, free for spectators. Register on the garden’s website.

halloween model rr halloween_rjc8489
Photo Credit © Chicago Botanic Garden

Trains, Tricks & Treats

Saturday October 18 & Sunday October 19 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Say goodbye to the model railroad garden for the season at Trains, Tricks, and Treats, October 18 and 19 (weather permitting). Come in costume and trick or treat inside one of our favorite exhibits. The landmarks and buildings will be decorated with pumpkins, ghosts, goblins spider webs and more! There will be surprises and treats around every corner. 

Trains, Tricks, & Treats at CBG
Photo Credit © Chicago Botanic Garden

Stations throughout the model railroad garden will offer treats and a planting activity. Ticket are available upon arrival. Tickets are $6 for adults; $5 for seniors; and $4 for children ages 3 to 12. Children 2 and under are free. Members receive $1 off each ticket. The usual parking fees apply.

Photo Credit © Chicago Botanic Garden

Hallowfest – A Garden of Good…and Evil

Saturday October 25 5:30 to 9:00 p.m. and Sunday October 26 4:00 to 7:30 p.m.
Visitors can follow a friendly or spooky path to the Regenstein Center, where they’ll find such Halloween-themed activities as face painting, fortune telling, seasonal crafts and family-friendly entertainers. A walk through the carved pumpkin gallery, filled with glowing jack-o’-lanterns, will provide inspiration for visitors, who can pick up a pumpkin to decorate at home. A Spooky Snack Shack will serve complimentary treats, and special monster meals will be sold at the Garden View Café.

Visitors can venture outside to tour the Model Railroad Garden, decorated in ghostly lights, and see the special ghost train. A 15-minute ride on the Howlin’ Express will take visitors past spooky sights staged throughout the Garden.

Tickets go on sale on August 26. Advance tickets are $14 for members; $19 for nonmembers. Day-of tickets are $17 for members; $22 for nonmembers. Children 2 and under are free. The usual parking fees apply.


The Chicago Botanic Gardens {1000 Lake Cook rd, Glencoe} is open daily. Admission is free but parking is $25 per vehicle

Connect with the Chicago Botanic Garden:
App: chicagobotanic.org/app
Blog: my.chicagobotanic.org
E-news: chicagobotanic.org/enews
Facebook: facebook.com/chicagobotanicgarden
Flickr: flickr.com/groups/chicagobotanicgarden
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/chicagobotanic/
Twitter: twitter.com/chicagobotanic
YouTube: youtube.com/chicagobotanicgarden

Disclosure: I am an ambassador for the garden and my family has received a membership in exchange for me sharing updates, and events, and activities at the garden. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 
About Melissa Haak 772 Articles
Melissa is mom to 4. She used to dream of traveling the world, now she dreams of a clean kitchen. She can be found on most social media sites as @PBinmyHair because with this much hair and four kids, you're bound to find something in it.

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