Halloween Festivities Coming Up at Local Forest Preserves

Trick-or-Treat Trails, Halloween history programs on the schedule in Lake County.

Halloween festivities designed for your little ones are offered at the Greenbelt Cultural Center in North Chicago, Ryerson Conservation Area in Deerfield, and the Lake County Discovery Museum in Wauconda.

Greenbelt Cultural Center

Trick-or-Treat Trails, a fun, active, non-scary Halloween event will be held Sunday, Oct. 28, from 2 to 5 p.m. Costumes are encouraged. This free family event is recommended for children ages 12 and under. No registration required. Many activities are held outdoors, so dress for the weather. In the event of rain, activities will be held indoors.

The event features trick-or-treating, games, mask making, a pumpkin carving demonstration, nature activities and a campfire from 2-3:30 p.m., a costume contest at 3:30 p.m., a Michael Jackson Thriller dance performance from 4-4:15 p.m., and a magic show with Leopold the Magician and Illusionist from 4:15-5 p.m. Prizes for the costume contest will be awarded to the first 20 contestants in each of three age groups: infant through 5; 6 through 8; and 9 through 12. 

Greenbelt Cultural Center is located on the east side of Green Bay Road (Route 131), just south of Belvidere Road (Route 120).

Ryerson Woods

Join us for the ever-popular Halloween Hikes on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 26 and 27, at Ryerson Woods. Take a one-hour guided group hike along a candlelit path to watch several nature-themed, costumed performances. Finish off at a cozy log cabin fireplace with cider and a fresh doughnut. The skits are not scary, so even your littlest will enjoy this family favorite. Hikes begin every 30 minutes from 6 to 8 p.m., and are designed for families with children ages 12 and under. Cost is $7 per person ($9 per person for nonresident). Children ages 3 and under are free. Register by phone at 847-968-3321 or online

Ryerson Woods is located on Riverwoods Road between Half Day Road (Route 22) and Deerfield Road, just west of the Interstate 94 Tollway.

Lake County Discovery Museum

Bring the tots to the museum for Small Discoveries-A Happy Halloween on Wednesday, Oct. 24, from 10 to 11 a.m. Costumes are encouraged. The program celebrates Halloween traditions with stories, games and a variety of hands-on activities, and is designed for children ages 2-5 with an adult. Cost is $6 for adults, $2.50 for children, and includes museum admission. Ages 3 and under are free. Register by phone at 847-968-3321 or online

Learn the history of Halloween and recreate vintage-style Halloween party favors and decorations popular from the 1920s through the 1950s, at A Vintage Halloween How-To on Sunday, Oct. 21, from 2 to 4 p.m. Leave with several hand-made party favors and decorations gleaned from magazines, party books and how-to pamphlets of the period. This hands-on workshop is designed for ages 13 and older with an adult. Cost is $9 ($11 for nonresident), and includes museum admission. Register by phone at 847-968-3321 or online

The Lake County Discovery Museum is located in Lakewood Forest Preserve. The entrance and parking area are on Route 176, just west of Fairfield Road.

— The Lake County Forest Preserve District submitted this information.


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