Chicago and the suburbs are filled with holiday lights experiences to drive through, walk through or just sit and look at. But a new lights show at Morton Arboretum lets visitors sing to trees to light them up, project lights across the lake with a touch of a screen, and hug a tree to make the light colors change. We took a walk around the lake and found the exhibit every bit as enchanting as the arboretum had promised.
Illumination, which runs Nov. 22-Jan. 4, is considered more than a lights show by Morton staff--it's considered a lights experience. Sue Wagner, vice president of education and information at Morton, had previously worked at Adler Planetarium and was used to creating immersive experiences. With the help of experiential lighting designers, Lightswitch, she worked to create an immersive environment among Morton's trees.
"What we're doing is enhancing the shape and structure of the trees and making it so people can see trees in a new way," Wagner says. "This is another way to help people understand how important trees are to our world, which is our mission."