Chicago Botanic Garden
Together, adults and children can explore cool things about how plants connect to science, art, history, and culture. Each program includes a variety of hands-on activities and projects, as well as opportunities to bring the Garden home. Programs run from November through April on Saturdays.
Early positive experiences in nature can foster a lifelong appreciation of and respect for the outdoors. Chicago Botanic Garden family programs integrate science, art, and language in activities that encourage families to learn together in an open-ended, enjoyable, and discovery-based environment.
Bring a picnic dinner and spend an evening in the Garden! Children ages 4 to 10 and their families will explore different areas of the Garden and enjoy a variety of discovery-based activities. Each Nature Nights also includes a short tram ride, planting project, and s’mores around the camp fire. Nature Nights is held rain or shine.
Come and pitch your tents in our outdoor classroom for a low-stress camping experience — with flush toilets and running water! Enjoy nature games and activities, go for a night hike, and cook s’mores. (S’mores and continental breakfast are included.)
These fun outdoor campouts offer kids and families in Chicago’s north shore suburbs activities that take advantage of the facilities and expertise at the Chicago Botanic Garden.
Add extra excitement to your weekend by combining a family visit to Brookfield Zoo with one or more of these fabulous programs. Each program is a single session that family members can enjoy together.
During these programs, children learn through play with their favorite play partner: you! Artists, nature educators, and early childhood specialists planned these programs from the same principles used to design Hamill Family Play Zoo, which connects children and their families to wildlife and nature.
In the evening start with dinner, a night hike, activities, behavorial enrichment craft and an ice cream bar. The next morning, wake up to a buffet breakfast, a morning hike and a visit to an exhibit where you’ll see your evening craft given to some animals. Everyone receives a patch ” I spent the Night with the Animals.”
FPD Nature Centers
Learn about plants, animals and ecology of the Forest Preserves in one of many Nature Programs offered throughout the year. Go bird watching, follow tracks in the snow, make a model insect or listen to nature stories under the stars. As the seasons turn, professional naturalists help visitors understand the science and meaning of nature’s wondrous changes. Most programs are free.