A Little Time and a Keyboard: 18 Fall Favorites in the Chicago Suburbs

18 Fall Favorites in the Chicago Suburbs

Sunday, September 17, 2023

18 Fall Favorites in the Chicago Suburbs for 2023

18 Fall Favorites in the Chicago Suburbs for 2023

Fall is in the air! With the Fall Equinox this week, I thought it was time to map out fall fun! Here are my favorite fall events in the Chicago suburbs - let's lean in to the new season:

Shades of Autumn Festival: Apple picking, pumpkin picking, a corn maze, a pumpkin cannon, farm animals to meet, a hayride, and so much more fun makes Stade's Farm & Market an easy family fall fun favorite! Plus, there is always something great to pick up in the farm market. The event has already started for this year and runs through October 29.

Pumpkin Daze: Located in Aurora, Abbey Farms invites the family to a day on the farm this fall. Pumpkin picking, a corn maze, a tire hill, a tire tunnel, a rope maze, and so much more fun craft the perfect fall day. The event runs through October 29th.

Richardson "World's Largest" Corn Maze: Every year, we eagerly anticipate the unveiling of the plans for the new corn maze in Spring Grove. The 2023 maze is an homage to Jurassic Park. Winding your way through the maze is a fun fall tradition. Richardson also has heaps of additional fall fun including a petting zoo, ziplines, apple cider donuts, wagon rides, campfires, a sunflower field, a pumpkin patch, and more. Admission fees apply. This year's maze will be open until October 29. See website for ticketing info and times.

Apple Fest: A regional tradition, Long Grove's Apple Fest is September 22-24 this year. Enjoy all sorts of apple creations plus live music, carnival rides, and artisan fair and more. Tickets may be purchased online.

The pumpkin patch at Abbey Farms in Aurora awaits.
The pumpkin patch at Abbey Farms in Aurora awaits.

Mount Prospect Fall Festival: Mount Prospect's Fall Festival is famous for its trick-or-treat line! The September 23 (1PM-4PM) festival will also include hayrides, pumpkin decorating and more.

Party for the Preserves: Party for Our Preserves on September 23 is a day to celebrate the amazing and beautiful nature spaces nearby. There are a number of nature events scheduled scattered among the Cook County Forest Preserves so see the website for more details.

Johnny Appleseed Festival: Come out and meet the famous man himself at Crystal Lake's annual festival celebrated this year on September 30. The event includes a scarecrow decorating contest, demos, entertainment and more.

Folk Fest The Grove: On October 1, The Grove in Glenview will host Folk Fest which will treat visitors with some fall frontier fun including square dancing, folk music, nature walks, historic interpretations, a dessert tent, and more. The event runs 11AM-5PM and you can purchase tickets online to reserve your spot.

Harvest Celebration: On October 1, families will enjoy fall on the farm at the Heritage Farm in Schaumburg. The fun includes seeing demos of fall farm activities in the 1890s as well as the opportunity to participate in some of them. Pumpkin decorating and wagon rides and to the fun. Live music and kids crafts add to the day. The event runs 12PM-4PM, $5 pp or $20 per family.

Pumpkin Weekends: Pumpkin Weekends in October at Blackberry Farm treat families to pumpkin fun while visiting the farm. Enjoy a pumpkin patch, pumpkin-themed activities as well as special events each day. Purchase tickets online. You can also enjoy the event on Columbus day.

St. Charles Scarecrow Festival: Scarecrows invade St. Charles for the annual festival to be held on October 6-8 this year. Over 85 scarecrows crafted by businesses, families and organizations will be scattered all over town. Visitors vote for their favorites in a variety of categories. Family fun, a craft fair, pumpkin carving, and live entertainment and more elements of fun. Head over to the website for the full schedule.

Great Highwood Pumpkin Fest and Skeletons on Display surprise with a variety of creations.
Great Highwood Pumpkin Fest and Skeletons on Display surprise with a variety of
 pumpkin and skeleton creations

The Great Highwood Pumpkin Festival: The Great Highwood Pumpkin Festival (October 6-8, 2023)  is one of my favorites of the year -- hundreds of jack-o-lanterns adorn walls lining the streets. They are lit up at night creating a fab fall atmosphere. The event includes live music, a kids costume contest, a pet costume contest, pumpkin carving, hayrides, carnival rides, and more. See schedule for more details. The festival also includes Skeletons on Display which has some truly comical skeleton displays created by local businesses. The skeletons stay on display through October.

Night of 1.000 Jack-o-Lanterns: Night of 1,000 Jack-o-Lanterns is one of the most magically spooky events of the season. Wander a path of jack-o-lanterns intricately carved into both creepy and sweet creations. The event also features live carving demos and entertainers. This year's event runs select days October 11-22 with limited ticket availability so you better get your tix soon!

Scarecrow Trail and Glass Pumpkin Patch: Each year, scarecrows decorated by local scout groups and organizations surround Meadow Lake at The Morton Arboretum. The creativity displayed is pretty impressive!  If you visit October 13-15, you will be able to visit the Glass Pumpkin Patch full of glass pumpkins of colors and sizes for sale plus you can watch a demo! Both are included with admission to the Arboretum.

Cantigny Fall Festival: For the first time ever, Fall Festival will be a full weekend this year October 13-15! Friday and Saturday night will feature German-style food and beer, live music, lawn games, and a campfire. Saturday and Sunday during the day will feature fall family fun. See website for full schedule and ticketing info.

Creating Glass Pumpkins: At Mundelein's Patterson Glassworks, fall is the time to craft glass pumpkins! Open Houses for creating glass pumpkins are October 14 & 15, 21 & 22 and November 4 & 5, 11 & 12. The experience is $45-$95 depending on size and type of pumpkin. The Open House runs 11AM-4PM each day. Call 847-949-0013 to book your time. 847-

Fall Festival: One of the first fall festivals I attended in this region happens to be the Fall Festival at River Trail Nature Center in Northbrook. This year's festival is on October 15 and will feature autumn fun, beekeeping demos, pumpkin painting, honey sales, and more.

Carol Stream Halloween Decorating Contest: Every year, Carol Stream has a village Halloween Decorating contest! Residents can enter through October 20 this year. Pay attention to the Carol Stream website -- they will post a map of the village's spooky houses.

18 Fall Favorites in the Chicago Suburbs: Fun Local Fall Events, Corn Mazes, Scarecrows, Glass Pumpkins, Halloween, and More


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