Morton Arboretum’s light show dazzles

What happened the last time you sang to a tree? We’re guessing nothing–or else someone gave you a concerned look.

If you go

Illumination: Tree Lights


5-9:30 p.m. Nov. 20-Jan. 2

-; – kids


Morton Arboretum,

4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle


But that’s not the case at Illumination: Tree Lights, where guests can sing to trees to make them change color and give the term “tree-hugging” a new–and more festive!–definition when those trees actually respond to human touch. (And no one will give you the side-eye.)

In other words, this is not your average light show. Illumination was a great hit with visitors in its first and second years. Favorites such as the Symphony of Lights–lights that dance to music from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra–and the Tinsel Colonnade–multi-colored strings of LED lights hanging from the trees–are back and better than before.

Brand new experiences this year include dazzling lighting effects on Meadow Lake, and Ornament Hill, where a series of glowing orbs create a glittering vista.

Illumination takes place along a one-mile path at the heart of the arboretum, but you can take pit stops at one of three warming areas (roast a s’more while you’re there). On weekends, local bands perform and there are kid-friendly interactive stations and a scavenger hunt to find someone called the “Glow Man.”

We’d say it sounds scary, but with 50 acres of lights around, there’s no way it can be anything but dazzling.

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