Julie McCaffrey
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Popular Halloween Event Returns to Chicago Botanic Garden
Event Date: to
Release Date: Thursday, August 31, 2023

Night of 1,000 Jack-o’-Lanterns, featuring a display of artist-carved pumpkins at the Chicago Botanic Garden, returns for 10 nights in advance of Halloween. More than 1,000 hand-carved, real pumpkins lit with LED lights will light up the night and line the family-friendly outdoor paved path in a beautiful fall setting. 

“Night of 1,000 Jack-o’-Lanterns is a festive annual tradition for visitors to walk through the Garden after dark guided by the glow of pumpkins,” said Jodi Zombolo, associate vice president, Visitor Events & Programs. “It’s a great opportunity to spend an evening outdoors with friends and family while being entertained along the way.”

Along the path of 1,000 glowing pumpkins, there will be approximately 80, some as large as 150 pounds, that are intricately carved with themes including haunted house monster faces, aliens, Día de los Muertos, and movies filmed in Illinois. Artists for the New York-based company Rise of the Jack O’Lanterns spend 8 to 10 hours to illustrate and then 10 to 20 hours to paint and carve each large pumpkin. Adding to the festive fall feeling, the route will also include live carving demonstrations, costumed entertainers, and seasonal light fare and drinks for purchase. 

This year’s event runs for 10 evenings from Wednesday, October 11, through Sunday, October 15, and Wednesday, October 18, through  Sunday, October 22. The Garden will close each day at 5 p.m. and reopen at 6 p.m. for ticket holders to this special event. Timed tickets can be purchased for entry between 6:30 and 9:30 p.m. Last entry is at 10 p.m., and the event ends at 10:30 p.m. 

Tickets are on sale now, and interested attendees are encouraged to purchase tickets early to secure their preferred time. Visit chicagobotanic.org/halloween for more information and to purchase tickets.  

An image gallery is available for media download here.  

About Chicago Botanic Garden
The Chicago Botanic Garden provides the opportunity for people and planet to thrive, showcasing the power of plants through its leadership in plant conservation science, community engagement, and learning, and the beauty of its 385-acre living museum. Every year, more than one million people visit the Garden’s 28 gardens and four natural areas. The Garden’s urban agriculture initiative, Windy City Harvest, helps build healthy communities through its 15 urban farms and programs in Chicago and nearby counties. The Garden is a nonprofit organization run as a public/private partnership with the Forest Preserves of Cook County.

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Editors, please note: For digital images, contact Julie McCaffrey at (847) 835-8213 or at Click here to show mail address.

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