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VISIT & explore

Explore Cultures of the Continent at The Morton Arboretum's Passport Europe Festival, September 23-24

The Alpenhorn musical instrument is always a hit at the Passport Europe Festival.
August 11, 2017

Visitors won’t need to travel far to watch authentic dance performances from Spain, learn about time-honored sports from the United Kingdom, and enjoy the music of the traditional Bavarian instrument, the 12-foot-long Alpenhorn, this September.

The Morton Arboretum’s fourth-annual Passport Europe Festival will feature dancing, live music, and athletic demonstrations Saturday, September 23 and Sunday, September 24.

Taking place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and free with Arboretum admission, the festival will also draw attention to the Arboretum’s well-established collection of trees from throughout Northern Europe. 

Several performance areas will feature entertainment, including, but not limited to:  

  • Take in the fast footwork of Spanish flamenco dancers accompanied by Guitarra Azul, an ensemble performing on the Spanish guitar.
  • Watch a demonstration of hurling, a traditional Irish field sport played with bats and a ball.
  • Stand among living statues donned in paint and costumes to complement the festival’s European theme.
  • Check out traditional German songs during a set from oompah band Jimmy's Bavarians.
  • Enjoy spirited Polish polka music from Danny Mateja & the IPA Tribute Band.
  • Croon along with Rat Pack Jazz. In addition to his Italian repertoire, singer Frank Lamphere performs covers of classic Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin songs. 
  • Witness the intricate and graceful techniques of the dancers of Salt Creek Ballet.


“An exciting range of performers representing countries across Europe combined with a scenic outdoor setting makes for a great time at the Arboretum,” said Gina Steele, special events coordinator at The Morton Arboretum. “The festival is also an opportunity to showcase our our tree collections from countries like Austria, Norway and Sweden, some of the oldest on our grounds.”

Visitors can also shop a wide selection of European goods and dine on popular dishes from throughout the continent.