Chicago’s Beloved ZooLights Event Is Coming Back Bigger & Better This Friday

Elliot McGowan Elliot McGowan

Chicago’s Beloved ZooLights Event Is Coming Back Bigger & Better This Friday

An enchanted forest, an 18-foot holiday tree, and a bewildering light maze – all in the heart of the city.

Lincoln Park Zoo’s much-loved annual ZooLights event is returning for almost eight weeks of family fun involving many of its cherished holiday traditions and some all-new features.

After the beloved event was forced to adapt last year in order to conform with coronavirus safety measures, Zoolights will this year be back to its best in 2021 offering a more magical family-oriented experience than ever before.

Last year the zoo ticketed entries at $5 per person for the first time in 20 years due to the financial implications caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The 2021 version will again cost $5 per person for anybody attending Wednesday-Sunday but this year Monday and Tuesday nights will be free of charge.

Hundreds of larger-than-life 3D LED displays will cover Lincoln Park while the usual delicious holiday snacks including warm spiced wine, frosty beers, and festive specials, will all be available throughout the event. There will also be exciting additional experiences returning to the zoo’s grounds such as the dazzling one-of-a-kind light maze and a reimagined and enhanced enchanted forest offering guests the chance to “meander among butterflies, flowers, mushrooms, and dripping lights with whimsical music and a magical ambiance.”

There will also be a Lionel Train Adventure which will take kids 10 and under on an exhilarating ride through a small garden with fun sculptures and animal whimsy along the way!

An impressive 18-foot tree, a new holiday lights experience in the Main Mall, and an exciting new light show on the South Lawn are new additions this year as well as sensory-friendly days on November 30 & December 15.

As with previous years, there will be members-only nights on Friday, November 19, and Monday, December 13 from 4-10 pm when members and their guests get exclusive access to a free night of ZooLights.

Tickets for Monday and Tuesday non-members free nights listed below become available on Thursday, October 21!

  • Nov. 22 & 23
  • Nov. 29 & 30
  • Dec. 6 & 7
  • Dec. 14
  • Dec. 20 & 21
  • Dec. 27 & 28

ZooLights 2021 will run from Friday, November 19 through Sunday, January 2. More information can be found at Lpzoo.org.

In all cases, tickets must be booked in advance regardless of age or cost. Animal buildings will be closed but animals may be visible in their outdoor habitats!

See more: 25 Terrifyingly Fun Things To Do This Halloween In Chicago

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