Oct 4, 2023 - Things to Do

5 family-friendly Halloween activities in metro Chicago

Halloween-themed shaped cookies

Photo courtesy of The Goddess and Grocer

Chicago has drink specials and frightening thrills, but Halloween is for kids, too.

  • Here are some activities that won't be too spooky for the little (and big) ones, but will still get you in the Halloween spirit.

Eat spooky-shaped cookies

The Goddess and Grocer has a Halloween Cookie Kit ($75.95), or already prepared Halloween-themed cookies and brownies if baking's not your thing.

Go on a scavenger hunt

Solve clues that guide you through some of Chicago's iconic — and spooky — spots with the Haunted City Exploration Game ($9 per person).

Decorate pumpkins

Paint pumpkins with the kids, and enjoy live music and hayrides at River Forest Halloween Hoot 'n Howl on Oct. 6 at 5pm. (Free)

Watch an extravagant parade

Woman with green dress and face paint dancing.
Performers are seen at the Art in the Dark Parade on State Street in 2019. Photo: Joel Lerner/Xinhua via Getty

Thousands show off their artistry with elaborate costumes, masks, acrobatics, puppetry, and more at the Arts in the Dark Parade on Oct. 21 at 5pm, celebrating Halloween as the "artists' holiday." (Free)

Plan an all-day outing

The Pumpkin Patch Festival in south suburban Bridgeview will have carnival rides, a petting zoo, food, live entertainment and, naturally, pumpkins on weekends in October, beginning Oct. 14. (Free for kids 3 and under, $15 for everyone else)


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