Halloween & Fall Fun in Chicagoland


 

There is still plenty of time to explore the nearby apple orchards and pumpkin patches. Those are usually the first two categories we think of when we talk about the onset of fall in the midwest. And of course, Halloween!

 

 

But, here are some other ideas, to explore this October!

 

No need to drive up the East Coast, enjoy the changing of the leaves in your own state by biking, walking, or driving through the below locations!

 

 

Pumpkin Spice Lattes may be all the rage, but a trip to the city for a fall dessert at one of these amazing bakeries is more my speed!

 

  • Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits
    • WEDNESDAY, THURSDAY & FRIDAYS (9AM-6PM) TAKEOUT/PATIO DINING
    • SATURDAYS (9AM-2PM) TAKEOUT/PATIO DINING
    • I’ve been eyeing the Apple Cider and Apple Raspberry!
  • Firecakes Donuts
    • Seasonal donuts include: Apple Cider & Pumpkin Crème Brûlée
    • No one will judge you if you make it a Donut Ice Cream Sandwich either. Consider it a prescription for 2021
  • First Slice Pie Cafe
    • Did you know that Food & Wine voted First Slice as one of America’s BEST apple pies?!
    • In addition, First Slice served more than 37,000 meals in 2007, and currently serves close to 4,000 meals each month to Chicago’s hungry, every month.
  • Floriole
    • Open Fri – Sun from 9-1
    • The Salted Honey Baby cake is to DIE for! You’ll thank me later.
  • Beatrix 
    • The Oh My! Caramel Pie will have your mouth watering and you ordering seconds.
  • Blue Sky Bakery & Cafe
    • “Blue Sky does more than create sweet and savory pastries made with the freshest, highest quality ingredients. As a nonprofit organization, we also raise the edible consciousness of our community by providing transitional employment to homeless and at-risk youth.”
    • Pumpkin pecan scone with a side of social justice please!
  • Do-Rite Donuts
    • I’ll take my pumpkin spice in donut form thank you very much. With a Michigan apple fritter on the side. :p
  • DMK Burger Bar
    • Skip the campfire and head straight to DMK for a toasted marshmallow shake. Hard day with the kids? Make it a boozy shake! 😉
  • Eli’s Ark
    • These adorable ice cream, creature creations will have you going “batty!”
    • Check out their halloween and thanksgiving themed characters!
  • Goddess And The Baker
    • Trick or Treat yourself to a Pumpkin Apple Butter Latte before exploring the rest of their delicious menu!
  • Hoosier Mama Pie Company
    • Try the Sour Cream Dutch Apple Pumpkin (does it get more fall than that?)
    • Make sure to order online for your Thanksgiving pie pick up orders!
  • Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams
    • Known for the unique ice cream flavors you can be guaranteed for some fall-tastic picks here!
    • Be the most popular guest at your Friendsgiving by bringing a quart of the pumpkin cake roll & banana cream pudding.
  • Jo-Jo’s Shake Bar
    • “JoJo’s Shake Bar, Chicago’s Go-To Spot for All Things Savory and Sweet, Welcomes Fall with the Most Elaborate Pumpkin Patch to hit Downtown Chicago! Taking place on their 5,000 sq ft patio, JoJo’s has filled the space with over 600 pumpkins, a 1954 Red Ford Truck, Hay Bales, and a bathtub filled with corn to satisfy your perfect fall photo needs! Pumpkin Patch Specials include gourmet caramel apples, pumpkin & apple pies, spiked ciders and biggie hot chocolates & of course, our famous Pumpkin Patch Shake, topped with Pumpkin Pie Slice, Taffy Apple, Roasted Marshmallow, and Toffee Pretzel.”
    • Don’t leave without the Pumpkin Patch Shake! Topped with a slice of pumpkin pie, taffy apple, roasted marshmallow, and reese’s pretzel.
    • Their pumpkin shaped domes are are available on a first come, first serve basis!
  • Katherine Anne Confections
    • Upgrade from your regular old chocolate with a creamy cup of Katherine Anne’s drinking chocolate!
    • The salted caramel will definitely be the right flavor for the season
  • Kilwins
    • There are multiple locations around Chicagoland but the Hyde Park location is African American owned and operated, so we like to support them whenever we can!
    • You will find yourself drooling over the caramel apples and chocolate confections but my absolute favorite flavor of ice cream from Kilwins is their Perfect Apple Pie flavor. I look forward to this returning to their menu every single fall!
  • Mindy’s Bakery
    • The famous Mindy Segal will be selling to go hot chocolate on the weekends!
    • Forget fall, I would drink this delectable cocoa in the heat of the summer if I could!
    • Sat & Sun Walk – Up and Preorder. 8 AM till its gone
  • Pie, Pie My Darling
    • 100% Vegan sweets baked from scratch!
    • You can find their cakes by the slice (while supplies last) for delivery and pickup at Uptons Breakroom in West Town & The Handlebar in Wicker Park. The flavor changes every other week, so check their menus/ instagram for this week’s flavor.
    • E-mail to inquire about ordering a whole cake!
  • Pretty Cool Ice Cream
    • “Available a la carte, or as a boxed set, our Fall Harvest flavors are perfect for these blustery days. Whether this season brings out the pumpkin spice cravings, or finds you popping fistfuls of kettle corn we have a pop for you! Apple makes two appearances- spiced cider frozen into an ice pop is refreshing and comforting. But the star of the show is the Apple Cider Donut pop- made by blending real donuts into our ice cream before it gets a cinnamon sugar coating just like the pumpkin patch favorite!”
  • Sweet Mandy B’s
    • Hopefully their Pumpkin Whoopie Pies make a comeback soon but in the meantime, the perfectly spiced pumpkin cupcake will do!
  • Xurro
    • The yummiest Churros with a creative spin!
    • I’ll take one S’more milkshake please! But just to hold me over until the Peppermint Christmas milkshake returns! 🙂
  • West Town Bakery & Diner
    • Chicago
    • Halloween themed chocolate covered oreos
    • Pumpkin spice lattes
  • Sugargoat by Stephanie Izard
    • Chicago (shipping available through Goldbelly)
    • 4 yummy fall drinks: Cinnamon roll latte, Chilly dark chocolate mocha, maple caramel corn latte
    • Pumpkin spice latte cupcakes
  • Bombobar
    • Seasonal items are back!
    • Pumpkin spice, Tiramisu, and Cannoli Bombolinis
    • Butterscotch & Cinnamon Toast Crunch brownie gelato
    • Chocolate Caramel Cookie Crumble, S’mores, and Classic Hotter Chocolates
  • XO Marshmallow
    • Boo Thang Marshmallow Ghosts
    • S’mores Dream Bars
    • Black Forest OMG & Fluffy the Marshmallow Slayer
    • October’s Mallow of the Month is Red Hawts!
    • Don’t miss the Snickerdoodle s’more
  • Coffee, Hip Hop, and Mental Health
    • Temporarily located at Lululemon Lincoln Park (944 West North Ave)
    • Purchase a Normalize Therapy Pumpkin Spice Latte and by doing so help raise funds to provide partial therapy scholarships to those who seek support.
  • Molly’s Cupcakes Rivereast
    • Snag the Halloween Box! An assortment of our Classic flavors – vanilla, chocolate, red velvet, and carrot, decorated with halloween sprinkles and spooky toppers!
    • Seasonal cupcakes:
      • Apple crisp, Pumpkin spice, Butterscotch caramel, Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel, and Tiramisu
  • Brown Sugar Bakery
    • Snag a dozen of caramel cupcakes!
    • Start thinking ahead for Thanksgiving and enjoy the sweet potato pie from this Chicago icon.
  • Vanille Patisserie
    • The Halloween cakes are absolutely gorgeous!
    • Pumpkin, Apple Pie, and Maple flavored macarons!
    • Pumpkin iced cinnamon rolls
    • Spice cake cupcake with apple cream cheese filling, apple pie macaron,
  • Kimmers Ice Cream
    • St. Charles, Wheaton, Elmhurst
    • Monster Mash: Orange dreamsicle ice cream with crushed oreos
    • Seasonal cranberry raspberry
    • Halloween sparkle cones
    • Apple Pie & Pumpkin ice cream
  • Eiffel Waffle
    • Downers Grove
    • Hot Chocolate topped with a fun sized bubble waffle
    • Pumpkin Dream, Sugar & Spice, Pumpkin Spice Milkshake, Frosted Cinnaminis
  • Graham’s 318 Coffee House
    • Geneva
    • Plenty of fall and Halloween themed donuts of the week! Their donuts are made from scratch every morning so check their social media for the current lineup!
  • Dip and Sip Donuts
    • Chicago
    • Decorated Halloween 6 pk presale for pickup October 30th & 31st only! Preorders open October 17th!
    • Halloween DIY kit available October 3rd – 31st. Bare vanilla or pumpkin donuts ready for decorating with the included frosting and toppings!

Are all the registration required Halloween events filled? Don’t fret! Check out these other Halloween ideas!

 

  • Cantigny Fall Festival
    • Saturday, October 9th from 10 – 4 PM
    • Festival admission and entertainment are free with paid parking ($5 per car). Some activities require a small fee, such as pumpkin decorating, hayrides, and the petting zoo (CASH ONLY, PLEASE.)
  • Fall at Lincoln Park Zoo
    • “Dive into the wonderful world of autumn, from picking the perfect pumpkin to sipping festive drinks, with Lincoln Park Zoo’s annual Fall Fest. This free, family-friendly celebration is full of harvest days fun this October. Fest guests can enjoy a pumpkin walk, live pumpkin carvers, a festive pop-up bar, animal chats, musical entertainment and more!”
    • Fridays – Sundays October 8th – 31st. Monday, October 11th: 10 – 5
  • Fright Fest
    • “Thrills by day, frights by night!”
    • September 18th – October 31st
    • Check the website for exact hours
    • Guests can also purchase haunted house wristbands. A haunted house wristband grants entry to all six haunted houses, including the all-new Condemned and Bloodshed. Wristbands can be purchased online or at various retail locations throughout the park.
    • NOTE Masks are required in indoor locations including haunted houses.
  • Jack O’Lantern World
    • Lake Zurich
    • “This October gather your friends and family and take a journey through the “Jack O’ Lantern World” experience. Walk a 3/4 mile long trail through 1000’s of Jack O’Lanterns hand carved by local artisans. Experience our one of a kind whimsical celebration of art, nature & fall.”
      • Select Dates, October 1st – 31st, 2021: Paulus Park, Lake Zurich
  • Cottages in the Woods
    • 528 East Side Dr, Geneva
    • Sat & Sun, October 16th & 17th from 10 – 4
    • “Cottages in the Woods is a unique fall event held in the historic Good Templar Park of Geneva, IL. Our Swedish stugas (cottages) will be open for visitors to see, each offering a variety of delightful wares from talented artists and craftspeople. Three food trucks, musicians, and wandering fairies will be under the canopies of our great oak trees. Enjoy autumns splendor while nibbling on a treat from our bakery. This family friendly occasion is a charming event for all ages.”
  • Family Fall Fest
    • Elmhurst
    • Saturday, October 16th, 9AM – 12 PM
    • “Get your costumes ready and bring the family to The Depot at Wild Meadows Trace from 9 a.m.-Noon for Safety Town trick-or-treating plus fall festivities!
      Fun will include an inflatable corn maze, carnival games, inflatable ogre maze, balloon twisters, air brush artist and food trucks.
      Food trucks include Chesa’s Gluten Free, Windy City Ice Cream, Mario’s Cart, Sugar Mama’s Mini Donuts and Da Pizza Dude.”
  • Haunted Forest Westmont
    • October 16th
    • “Sandra Smith Woods will come alive for one very magical, mystical night! Participants will hop on a wagon ride that takes them from Diane Main Park through the terrifying woods path scenes. After that, participants will get off the wagons and walk through the wicked woods where all kind of scares await them. Don’t turn your back, as characters, ghouls and creatures will come alive before your very eyes!
      For our younger viewers it is recommended you attend our “Merry Monster Showing” from 5:00-6:30pm.”
  • A Nightmare at West Main
    • Batavia
    • Friday, October 15, and Friday, October 22; 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm both days, West Main Community Park
    • “The ghosts are coming out to play in the forest at West Main Community Park. Join us for a haunted hike through our spooky trails. Evil lurks in the forest, so enter if you dare! This event is not suitable for kids younger than 10 years old. Advance tickets can be purchased through October 14 for $8 per ticket. Admission is $10 day-of.”
  • Mr. Dave Music Halloween Shows
    • Fitzgerald’s: October 16th at 11 AM
    • Boopalooza: October 23rd at 10 AM
    • Bar Siena: October 26th at 10:30 AM
  • Bubbles Academy
    • Friday, October 22nd
      • Halloween Snapshots with TK Photography
    • Bubbleween
      • Sunday, October 31st at 11 AM – 12 PM, OR, 12 PM – 1 PM
      • “Each time slot will feature live music, trick-or-treat bag decorating, open play and family snapshots by TK Photography! After you have some Halloween fun with us, stop by other participating retailers at 900 N. Michigan for trick-or-treating! Advance registration required. Up to 2 adults may accompany each registered child. Masks required for ages 2+ regardless of vaccination status. Parking is validated with a $10 retail purchase at Bubbles Academy, Aster Hall, or any other retailer at 900 N. Michigan.”
  • Ghost Stories at Smith Woods
    • October 22nd at 5:45 PM
    • “Legend has it that on certain nights in Smith Woods you can see the ghosts of years past wondering through the trees looking for their final resting places. For those who like a good scare and think they are brave enough, we are going to have a fire pit, tell scary ghost stories, and enjoy some snacks.”
  • Fall Festival at the Promenade (Bolingbrook)
    • October 22nd – 24th
    • Artisans, crafts, fall food, live music, and appearances by Jack & Sally Skellington!
    • Vendor trick or treating on the 24th only from 2 – 4 PM
  • Caravan to Candyland
    • St. Charles
    • Wednesday, October 27th 5 – 7:30 PM
    • Advance registration required
    • “Enter James O. Breen Community Park at the Campton Hills Road entrance and follow the Halloween-themed path for a unique trick-or-treating experience! Along the way, from the safety of your own vehicle, stop at candy/prize stations during this spirited and lively event. All items will be individually wrapped for safety. Characters will use latex gloves for distribution. Candy may be made on equipment that also processes peanuts, nuts and wheat. If a child needs a non-peanut candy option, please tell a staff member wearing an orange vest at the entrance.”
  • Little Goat Diner
    • Little Goat is my favorite restaurant and they have a ton of Halloween fun planned!
      • Thursday, October 21st at 5 PM: Spooky Cookie & Cupcake Decorating Class
      • Tuesday, October 26th at 5 PM: Pumpkin Carving at Little Goat
      • Friday, October 29th at 5 PM: Kids Halloween Costume Party
  • Night at the Museum: Halloween Party
    • Dupage County Historical Museum
    • October 22nd at 6 PM
    • “Come dressed in your Halloween costume and enjoy a three-floor flashlight scavenger hunt, the movie “Halloweentown” and crafts. $10 per person.”
  • Roselle Fall Fun Fest
    • Saturday, October 23rd
    • Clauss Maintenance Barn
    • With the crisp autumn air and colorful leaves upon us let’s celebrate the wonderful season of fall! Join us for the Roselle Park District’s very own Fall Fun Fest! Bring the whole family for music, food, hayrides, inflatable corn maze, pumpkin decorating and much more!
  • Roselle Halloween Spooktacular
    • Friday October 29th at 6 PM
    • Ages 2-6
    • Join the Roselle Park District for a night of spooky Halloween fun! Children are encouraged to arrive in costume and will participate in crafts, pumpkin decorating, games and more!
    • Registration Deadline: October 25, 2021
  • Campfire Horrors at Northerly Island Park (& other parks)
    • October 15th: Scream
    • October 16th: Nightmare Before Christmas (North Park Village Nature Center)
    • October 22nd: Little Shop of Horrors
    • October 23rd: Scoob! (Sherman Park)
    • October 29th: Beetlejuice
  • Chitown Movies Halloween Drive In
    • Check out the calendar for some awesome Halloween options throughout the month!
  • Highway of Horror
    • Downtown Chicago
    • “Our haunt is set in a derelict lot in the shadows of the skyscrapers of Chicago’s iconic Loop and nestled against highway 90/94 where many a horrible incident occurred not long ago. You’ll first settle in with a drive in movie experience that sets the narrative. Dozens of the undead, demons, zombies and more jump out at and rock your car accompanied by sound effects and sprays of blood. At our drive-in haunted house, you are confined to your car for 90 minutes, so you can’t escape the horror until the end. Can you beat the fear coming at you from all directions?”
    • Open 6pm til 10pm, Thursday – Sunday, October 14th – November 1st.
  • Galewood’s Not So Spooky Halloween Parade
    • October 23rd beginning at 2 PM
    • Calling all ghouls, ghosts and goblins! Galewood Neighbors is partnering with Happy Kids Chicago and Trinity Galewood Church to bring all the tricks and treats you can eat!
      Join Minnie, Mickey and others on Saturday, October 23rd at 2:00pm along the parade route starting at Sayre Language Academy. We will end at Trinity Galewood Church with an outdoor Fall Fest from 3:00-4:00pm sure to please all ages young and old.”
  • Halloween Book Club with Connections Academics
    • October 30th at 11 AM
    • Time Out Market Chicago
    • “Join us for a Halloween Book Club & Storytime with Connections Academics. Stories will be read by Anna Tewell who is a former teacher and the current Director of Connections Chicago. This Halloween Book Club will be filled with fun and engaging stories about the best parts of spooky season. Kids are encouraged to celebrate the holiday by wearing their costumes!”
  • Storozhuk Family Light Show
    • 860 Woodhollow Lane
    • October 16th – October 31st
    • More details to come soon!
  • St. Charles Gallery of Ghoulish Homes
    • Best viewed at dusk October 15th – 31st
    • Drive or walk by some of the spookiest houses in St. Charles!
  • Mack Manor Drive Through Display
    • 1066 Algonquin Road, Fox River Grove
    • Opening day, October 9th 6 – 9:30
    • WE PLAN ON BEING OPEN DAILY through October 30, weather permitting (This includes closing due to rain/wind). ****Closed Halloween*****
    • PLANNED HOURS: SUBJECT TO CHANGE – Daily hours posted every MORNING!
      • Monday – Thursday 6-9pm,
      • Friday & Saturday, 6-10pm,
      • Sunday 5-8:30pm.
    • Keep windows rolled up and no one hanging out of sunroofs
    • Radio station 106.9 FM
    • No charge but accepting donations
  • The Cote’s Haunted Yard
    • 6907 Townsend Blvd, Plainfield, IL
    • Here are the dates and times we are trying to be open. Weather permitting of course. Our hours are 6:30-9:30pm.
      October 8 and 9th, 15th and 16th, 22nd, 29th and 30th. We are closed on October 23rd for private event. And we will be closed on Halloween
  • Midnight on Morton
    • Batavia
    • “Come to our spooky Halloween display! We have skeletons and ghosts animatronics. Kid friendly with some adult humor! Most of my items are made from 75% recycled materials.”
    • Hours typically from 7 – 9. Check their FB page for updates and weather cancellations
  • Achter Acres
    • Yard Haunt. 5901 Liberty Sq, Oak Forest, IL
    • Halloween 9/1 to 10/31
    • Hours: Sun-Thur Dusk till 9:00 (No actor’s/fog)
    • Fri-Sat Dusk till 10:30 (Actors, fog and flaming pumpkins likely!)
  • Death on Dobson
    • Geneva
    • An entire corner lot + of Halloween scenes perfect for all ages. Pirates, mermaids, spiders, sabertooth, devil’s, clowns, and more. Halloween night some characters come alive and you can walk through!”
  • Oak Forest’s Haunted Garage
    • 5936 Condado Drive, Oak Forest
    • October 23rd & 30th; 7 – 10 PM
    • “Walk through the chilling Haunted Garage where live actors will frighten you the whole way! Free to enter. Donations are appreciated. Ran by local teens doing great things in our community! Come out and support while getting into the Halloween spirit!”
  • Museum of Science and Industry Boo Fest
    • “Two weeks of family-friendly science experiences will let you get into the Halloween spirit. Explore specially decorated exhibits, examine the science of Halloween with pumpkin drops and slime, try your hand at eyeball dissection and more. You can even go trick-or-treating on Halloween weekend!”
  • Terror In The Timbers
    • Camp Big Timber Elgin
    • “Think you’re safe behind a piece of glass and some metal? Think again. The dead have taken over the once innocent Camp Big Timber and are coming for the living…one car at a time. This one-of-a kind drive-thru scenic Halloween experience allows you to simply put your car in park, sit back and let the Terror begin.”
      • “And new this year with an ‘add-on’ ticket, you can park your car, take a break in our new Midway area before continuing your screams on our ALL NEW Trail of Terror Haunted Hike!”
    • Family-Friendly Haunted Trail
      • All New Family-Friendly version of our Trail of Terror in a one-day event scheduled for Sunday, October 10th! Take the kids out to see our Trail of Terror tamed down for the daytime. Open noon-5pm, tickets include special performances by:
        • Sycamore Performing Arts Academy
        • Silk Aerial Show
        • School of Rock
  • La Grange Skeletober
    • “Beginning on Saturday, October 10 through October 31. Visitors can team up with family and friends for a scavenger hunt throughout downtown La Grange and the West End. Follow all the clues to 10 locations to be entered in a random prize drawing.”
    • The famous Thriller Dance, popularized by Michael Jackson’s music video, will be performed by costumed dancers from the Dance Center of La Grange on Saturday, October 16 from 1pm – 1:30pm near La Grange Village Hall.
  • Glen Ellyn Scarecrow Row
    • Oct 16th – 31st
    • “Follow the Rows and Rows of 100+ Scarecrows lined up in Downtown Glen Ellyn at this FREE Family-Friendly and Socially Distant Outside Event!  Join the fun and see the handmade Scarecrows created by scout troops, community members, local businesses, & non-profits. Explore unique one-of-a-kind storefronts with their decorated windows and dine the fall menu at one of our many restaurants.”
  • Morton Arboretum Scarecrow Trail
    • Oct 1st – Nov 1st
    • Morton Arboretum requires timed entry ticket reservations in advance online
    • “Take a stroll around Meadow Lake to view scarecrows created by local scout troops and school groups. After your walk, vote for your favorite scarecrow.”
  • Aurora Sugar Skull City
    • “Welcome to Sugar Skull City! Aurora Downtown is honoring Day of the Dead, the beloved Mexican cultural tradition, from October 15 to November 7, 2021. Join us in celebrating Dia de los Muertos with art, activities, specials, videos, shopping, and much more.”
  • Homer Glen Heritage Park Scarecrow Display
    • October 2nd-29th: Walk along Heritage Circle and View the creative scarecrow displays. Vote for your favorite! Three winners will be chosen.
    • Spooky Park: October 2nd – 31st. Come out to Heritage Park (day or night) for bats, spiders, ghosts, and lights! The park will be decorated with all things spooky the month of October.
  • Fall at Brookfield Zoo
    • “Gather your ghoulfriends, little ghosts, and goblins for this fun-filled family event. Check out the creatures, creepy crawlers, and more in your costumes at the Halloween-themed event that’s perfect for family photo ops. All ages are in for a fang-tastic time, and the kids will leave with a sweet treat. Boo! at the Zoo is spooky, safe, and socially distant!”
    • Head to the website for the list of activities!
  • Naperville Halloween Lights Map
    • Utilize this map to go on a driving tour of festive Halloween houses in Naperville!
  • Haunted Halloween Hangar
    • Illinois Aviation Museum
    • “Join us for a scary good time at our 2nd annual Spooktacular Haunted Halloween Hangar! Put your costume on and bring your trick or treat bag to collect treats as you make your way through some ghostly hangars. Pre-registration is required, no walk-ins will be accepted.”

 

Did I miss anything? Comment with a unique fall activity you have enjoyed so far!


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