So you want to savor the last few sweet sounds and sights of summer? Me too. That’s why when I heard about the Children’s Garden in Elwood, IL, about an hour southwest of Chicago, I high-tailed it there with my toddler and soon-to-be preschooler in tow. Was I ever glad I did! I spent a sunny morning outside (in the shade), catching up with a friend while our kids chased butterflies and built a tree fort next to a tee-pee. Yes, this actually happened, and I have returned a few times since. Take a chance on this secret garden. There’s so much to love.
They can pretend to be Peter Rabbit
If you go
801 N. Chicago Ave. Elwood, IL
Your kids can make mud pies and play tic-tac-toe on a whimsically painted tree stump, all while looking over their shoulder for Mr. McGregor. Good news … he’s nowhere to be found.
They discover why learning is fun
There are so many opportunities for learning in this naturally beautiful setting. The best thing about them all? Your kids will think they’re just having fun. From the set-up game of checkers to the “Create a sentence with word rocks” display, it’s so obvious that this place is a labor of love for those who created it and maintain it.
They find new surprises
Each time we have gone back to this lovely garden, there has been a new and wonderful display for kids to play with, and we always find a new section of the park we had not previously discovered.
They can follow the yellow brick road
Your kids can play follow the leader on this adorable path that leads to a play house where Goldilocks once played, but they will stop in their tracks when they see the Tin Man (for real!).
They can stay and play awhile
Right next to the large parking lot is a park with two different play structures, one for little kids and one for big kids. Staying for lunch? There is also a shaded pavilion to keep you cool and comfortable.