Let Fun “Fall” Into Place At The Morton Arboretum
Enjoyable Family Activities For Everyone In Fall Color Festival
LISLE, IL (September 18, 2007) – Autumn is always a special time to flourish – to make special memories with families and friends. The Morton Arboretum Fall Color Festival, against the backdrop of gorgeous trees in fall color, lets you make those memories through fun activities for young and old.
Events include a 5K run, giant pumpkin carvings, the sale of garden ornaments and plants, wine tastings, taffy apples, a “scarecrow trail,” live theatre, and more. There’s so much to do – visitors can find something new each weekend.
Talk about the great pumpkin! Watch a 500 pound pumpkin turn into a giant jack-o’-lantern when artist Steve Dahlke demonstrates his talents in “Giant Pumpkin Carving,” September 30, October 8 (Columbus Day), and October 14, 21, and 28.
Runners love the Fall Color 5K Run/Walk on the Arboretum’s USA Track and Field-certified course amid beautiful trees, on September 30. The walk begins after all 5K runners clear the start; and there’s a free Kids Dash for children age 12 and younger (registration required). Adult participants receive a t-shirt and goody bag. Register in person at the Visitor Center Information Desk or online at www.mortonarb.org/events. Pre-registration fee before September 27 is $25, race-day registration is $30.
“Gourd Works” display and sale of functional and beautiful artistic gourd creations is held October 6-8, 27-28. Browse an exhibit and sale of fine art inspired by nature at “Portfolia” October 13 and 14. On October 20 and 21, visit the “Fox Valley African Violet Society Show and Sale.” Fill up your garden with a shopping spree at “The “Garden Marketplace,” a potpourri of garden accents, including fall color plants, bulbs, unique garden ornaments, and container garden items. It’s held Saturdays, Sundays, and Columbus Day (October 8): 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. and Wednesdays through October 24: 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Seasonal “Culinary Treats” include hand-dipped taffy apples with candy and nut toppings. The Ginkgo Grill features hamburgers, bratwurst and hot dogs. There’s a gourmet popcorn cart with lemonade, special drinks, and ice cream treats. Visitors can make new friends during a free wine tasting event, and purchase bottles of their favorite varieties. It all happens Saturdays and Sundays, Columbus Day, and Wednesdays through October 24.
Follow the “Scarecrow Trail” around beautiful Meadow Lake for a gander at a showcase of nature-themed scarecrows, designed by local Girl Scout Troops. Previous clever inventions included “May The Forest Be With You,” and others. September 28 - October 28.
After playing amid the Arboretum’s 1,700 acres, settle down to see a play. Marvel at the magic and mystery of Aslan, the great lion, and his struggle with the White Witch, in “The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe” (the last weekend in September, and weekends through October 28.) The play chronicles the adventures of four children who inadvertently wander from an old wardrobe into the exciting, never-to-be-forgotten Narnia. A “Theatre-Hike” combines a fine show with a healthful hike – the cast performs a scene at one location before audience and cast hike to the next spot for another scene. Prices range from $15 for show only to $40 for show and dinner. Member discounts available. Bring a blanket or lawn chair, hike covers some hilly ground. To order, call 630-725-2066 or visit www.mortonarb.org.
Kids learn about nature and have fun in Children’s Garden activities. In “Awesome Apples,” they make an apple print or apple charm necklace on weekends in September, and on October weekdays, children create images of butterflies, stars or the sun using crayon rubbings of real leaves in “Leaf Art.” On October weekends, it’s “Go, Crow, Go!” when children make a mini-scarecrow to take home.
Xanadu continues to draw crowds. The giant sculpture of woven wood, by internationally-acclaimed artist Patrick Dougherty, is like a magic castle where children play hide and seek, and adults sit and contemplate the beauty of trees. See it daily anytime Arboretum grounds are open.
It’s best to see fall color often, because the stunning autumn palette changes frequently. This year, bicycling is open to all on the nine miles of paved Arboretum roads. Or, take a “Fall Color Guided Walk” on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays through October. If you’d rather ride, take the Acorn Express open-air tram that runs daily. $6/adult, $4/youth.
The Fall Color Festival’s 2007 Presenting Sponsor is UPM. Theatre Hikes’ 2007 Presenting Sponsor is LaSalle Bank, and Sara Lee Corporation is the 2007 Supporting Sponsor. The Fall Color 5K Run and Walk Contributing Sponsors are Athletico, BlueCross BlueShield of Illinois, and Dick Pond Athletics. Supporting Sponsors are Central DuPage Hospital, Chipotle, REI, the John G. Shedd Aquarium, Whole Foods Market, and WXRT-FM Radio.
Unless otherwise specified, all Arboretum events and destinations, including the Children’s Garden, are free with Arboretum admission, which is:
- $9 per person ($6 on Wednesday), ages 18-64
- $8 per person, ($5 on Wednesday), ages 65 and over
- $6 per person, ($4 on Wednesday), ages 3-17
- (Under age 3 is free)
- Parking is free.
The Morton Arboretum is an internationally recognized 1,700-acre outdoor museum with collections of 4,057 kinds of trees, shrubs, and other plants from around the world. The Arboretum's beautiful natural landscapes, gardens, research and education programs, and year-round family activities support its mission – the planting and conservation of trees and other plants for a greener, healthier, and more beautiful world. Conveniently located at I-88 and Rte. 53 in Lisle, Illinois, the Arboretum is open 7 days a week, 365 days a year, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. or sunset, whichever is earlier, Central Time. The Children's Garden is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (CDT) and 9:30 to 4 p.m. (CST). Visit www.mortonarb.org or call 630-968-0074 to learn more.
Media Contact: Gina Tedesco, 630-725-2103,