Where to get into the Halloween spirit

 

Pumpkins and scarecrows have taken over Highwood. (J Jacobs photo)
Pumpkins and scarecrows have taken over Highwood. (J Jacobs photo)

 

Great Highwood Pumpkin Festival

Go to downtown Highwood, a tiny, just over a square mile North Shore city known for its restaurants, to see skeletons dressed for the season, carve pumpkins, take carnival rides and find more pumpkins than you can count.

They’re all a part of the Great Highwood Pumpkin Festival, this weekend. 

The Fest already began on Thursday but events continue all weekend including pumpkin carving at 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday at three pumpkin carving stations.

Ghostly figures climb a distillery wall of glass downtown Highwood on Sheridan Road during the Great Highwood Pumpkin festival. (J Jacobs photo)
Ghostly figures climb a distillery wall of glass downtown Highwood on Sheridan Road during the Great Highwood Pumpkin festival. (J Jacobs photo)

Anyone can carve three pumpkins to help the festival’s goals to outdo past years’ total pumpkins carved. They are in Everts Park west of the Metra tracks, at City Hall Park on the east side of the track, and at Painters Park at 424 Sheridan Road across from Buffo’s where visitors can find Interactive Skeleton Displays that re-enact dance scenes from movies and pop culture.

There’s also a carnival, three stages of music, hayrides, food vendors and Sunday costume and pie-eating contests. Signups are still available for the Pet Costume noon contest, the  Kids Costume Contest at 1 p.m. and the Pumpkin Pie Eating contest at 2 p.m.

 

Lots of Howling photo spots to take photos at Boo at Brookfield Zoo. (Photo courtesy of Chicago Zoological society.
Lots of Howling photo spots to take photos at Boo at Brookfield Zoo. (Photo courtesy of Chicago Zoological Society.

Boo!

Brookfield Zoo’s famed Boo at the Zoo festival starts Saturday and Sunday Oct. 8-9 and continues weekends in October through Oct. 22-23, 2022. What to do: Take selfies at the zoo’s funny photo spots such as a Howl-O-Scenes at the Nature Stage or the photo frames and peek boards.

Also, find the “Crazed Maize” on the West Mall open from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.. But don’t get lost because there are Zoo chats at the Hamill Family Play Zoo at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. and at the Australia House at 3:30 p.m.. Plus, there are pumpkins for animals feeding times and a “Creepy Carousel” to take.
Get a sweet treat upon exiting from 11:00 a.m. to 4 p.m.

No costume contests this year but youngsters age 13 and younger are encouraged to wear their Halloween costume.

For more zoo information, visit CZS.org/Boo or call (708) 688-8000.

Jodie Jacobs

 

Two popular events to mark on the calendar

 

Walk among fun, interesting, spooky Jack-o-Lanterns at the Chicago Botanic Garden. (Photo courtesy of ChicagoBotanic)
Walk among fun, interesting, spooky Jack-o-Lanterns at the Chicago Botanic Garden. (Photo courtesy of ChicagoBotanic)

 

Not everything fun in 2020 has been canceled

The Chicago Botanic Garden which has been welcoming visitors to its outdoor paths via timed entry tickets is planning its popular Night of 1,000 Jack o’ Lanterns Oct. 14-18 and Oct. 21-25.

Considering how fast the summer is going don’t be caught unaware for its September ticket sales. To members sept. 9 and the public sept. 16. For more info visit ChicagoBotanic/Halloween.

 

Appropriate music accompanies your walk through cathedral-style arch. (J Jacobs photo)
Appropriate music accompanies your walk through cathedral-style arch. (J Jacobs photo)

 

Then there is Lightscape the amazing sound and light show that sold-out last year. It will be Nov. 13, 2020 through Jan. 3, 2021. Tickets are going on sale to members Aug. 17.   And the public Aug. 25

For other information visit ChicagoBotanic/Lightscape.

 

Around Town goes to two places for fall color and fun pumpkins

 

Fall at the Morton Arboretum. (Photo courtesy of MortonArb)
Fall at the Morton Arboretum. (Photo courtesy of MortonArb)

Of course visitors to the Morton Arboretum in Lisle and the Chicago Botanic Garden in Glencoe would expect to see trees changing their summer colors to seasonal autumn rose, gold and bronze.

However, both popular Chicago area destinations also annually welcome fall with ales, pumpkins and more.

 

Glass pumpkins at the Morton Arboretum. (Photo courtesy of MortonArb)
Glass pumpkins at the Morton Arboretum. (Photo courtesy of MortonArb)

Morton Arboretum

Go this weekend to find hand-blown glass pumpkins. Art fair goers have been collecting these delicate pieces for the past few years but the Glass Pumpkin Patch that is going on now through Oct. 13, features about six thousand choices.

Or go Oct. 19 for the Cider and Ale Festival and toast the season.

On the spookier side, do the Troll Hunt which is still going on. These giant-sized,  artistically crafted, wooden creatures can be found through June 2020 but are a fitting addition to a season filled with other-world spirits. Sculpted by Danish artist Thomas Dambo, the trolls are supposed to protect the environment.

For more Morton Arboretum information visit Mortonarb/explore.

 

Walk among fun, interesting, spooky Jack-o-Lanterns at the Chicago Botanic Garden. (Photo courtesy of ChicagoBotanic)
Walk among fun, interesting, spooky Jack-o-Lanterns at the Chicago Botanic Garden. (Photo courtesy of ChicagoBotanic)

Chicago Botanic Garden

Go tonight, Oct. 10 from 6 to 8 p.m. to hoist a beer to welcome fall.

Put a fun costume on your dog and you can also dress-up to if you go Oct. 13 for a Spooky Pooch Parade from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. This is the only time dogs (except support dogs) are allowed in the

Or go one evening when 1,000 spooky Jack-o-Lanterns light garden paths and patches from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. select nights from Oct. 16 to 27.

For more Chicago Botanic Garden information see Chicagobotanic/visit.

Jodie Jacobs

 

 

Around Town in October

October has enough food, music, art and fall events to fill several calendars. Here are just a few of the events to tack up on the board.

The photography exhibit is in Polk Park across from the entrance to Navy Pier. (Jodie Jacobs photo)
The photography exhibit is in Polk Park across from the entrance to Navy Pier. (Jodie Jacobs photo)

Two art shows

“Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace: The Doughboys1917-1918” is at Navy Pier beginning Oct. 5 and continuing through Nov. 18, 2018 in Polk Bros Park (across from the Pier’s entrance). A free exhibit, the works are by photo journalist Michael St. Maur Sheil.

Taken over eight years, the compilation tells stories of battleground transformations, peace and remembrance. It works well with Navy Pier’s history. Originally called the “Municipal Pier” it was later renamed Navy Pier in honor of naval veterans who served in World War I. (It became a training center for the U.S.Navy in 1941before returning to public use for an education institution and then an entertainment destination).

An opening commemorative event is at the Pier Oct. 5 at 5:15 p.m. followed by the Navy Band Great Lakes Wind Ensemble that plays at 6 p.m. in the Crystal Gardens. For more information call (800) 595-PIER (7437 and visit Navy Pier. Navy Pier is at 600 E. Grand Ave., Chicago.

 

The Chicago Creative Coalition (C3) is holding its 20th Annual Gallery Walk Oct. 18 2018 at four River North galleries. Basically a semi- private tour, the Gallery Walk requires registration. C3 members $15, general admission $20, students $5. Visit Gallery Walk Registration.

Music on Halsted All-Inn event
Music on Halsted All-Inn event

Two Festivals

All-Inn fest, a three-day indoor music festival will be at Halsted Street bars from aliveOne to The Store from Oct. 11 through Oct. 13, 2018. Admission is free with a wristband gotten from aliveOne, Tonic Room or The Store. Bar and band hop beginning at 8 p.m. For more information visit Lincoln Park Chamber All Inn.

Randolph Street Market goes indoors with Octoberfest Oct. 27-28 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. An indoor venue featuring more than 125 vendors, the Market is at 1341 Randolph St. The Octoberfest celebration will have pumpkins but also antiques and clothing. For more information visit Randolph Street Octoberfest.

 

A pumpkin guards the path at the Chicago Botanic Garden (J Jacobs photo)
A pumpkin guards the path at the Chicago Botanic Garden (J Jacobs photo)

Two spooky-ish fall color destinations

Visitors to the Morton Arboretum can combine leaf looks with the scarecrows, cider and scary adventures of the season at the Morton Arboretum during the Fall corol festival. Also, look for the Glass Pumpkin Patch and Jack o Lantern Hikes dates.The Morton Arboretum is at 4100 Hwy 53. Lisle, IL  For more information go to Morton Arb.

Pumpkins at the Chicago Botanic Garden will be lining the walkways Oct. 24-28, 2018 from 6:30-10:30 p.m. during the annual Night of 1000 Jack o Lanterns. Take photos for some ideas of how to carve your pumpkin next year. The Chicago Botanic Garden is at 1000 Lake Cook Rd. Glencoe. The event has timed tickets. For tickets and other info visit Chicago Botanic.

Enjoy October!

Jodie Jacobs