News Release
Contact: Sondra Katzen, Public Relations, 708.688.8351,
May 18, 2018
Note: Images of any of the events listed below are available by calling the Chicago Zoological Society’s Public Relations Department at (708) 688-8351 or emailing
Brookfield Zoo’s Calendar of Events
(June – December 2018)

Amazing Arachnids—NEW
(Through September 3)
This summer, discover the marvels of eight-legged critters at Brookfield Zoo’s new temporary exhibit—Amazing Arachnids—that will explore human-arachnid cultural connections. Guests will have the opportunity to get up close to 100 live arachnids displayed in three themed areas that highlight their unique characteristics and importance in several genres, including medical research, music, literature, film, conservation, folklore, and mythology. Special Zoo Chats and hands-on interactives and opportunities for guests of all ages such as weaving a spider web, will enhance the experience.
Another component of Amazing Arachnids connects guests to the stories and strengths of 16 endangered species, including spiders, which can be seen at Brookfield Zoo. Giant colorful spinning wheels highlight 48 missions or tasks that link guests with one of the animals in a gigantic maze. After spinning the wheel, zoogoers are then challenged to move through the immersive attraction that introduces themes of species survival and protection through play-and-learn interactives like a climb-on spider web, jungle vines, swinging bars, and a falcon monorail zip slide. Youngsters and families can play over and over again with a new adventure each time, all the while lending more and more meaning to their subsequent journey around the zoo meeting the animals with which they now have a personal connection. The cost for Amazing Arachnids is $5 for adults and $3 for children 3-11 and seniors 65 and over.
Father’s Day Barbeque
(June 17)
Bring Dad for a fun-filled Father’s Day barbeque in Brookfield Zoo’s Pavilions featuring an interactive DJ. Enjoy an all-you-can-eat summertime buffet as well as a cash bar. Seating is limited and reservations are required. Tickets are $43.95 for adults and $33.95 for children 3-11 years old. For additional information and to make reservations, or call (708) 688-8355.
(June 23-24)
Enjoy bears and beers, lions and lagers, anteaters and ales...all at Brookfield Zoo's 7th annual ZooBrew, sponsored by Blue Moon Brewing Company, on Saturday, June 23 and Sunday, June 24. The unique 21-and-over beer-tasting event, which takes place on the zoo’s East Mall, features more than 80 beers, including branded beer tenders and specialty brews. Guests can enjoy live music by DT Funk on Saturday and Run Forrest Run on Sunday as well as have the opportunity to bid on silent auction items. Ticket prices range from $55-$85 ($35-$45 for designated driver). To register visit For more information, call (708) 688-8000.
Summer Nights Concerts
(Friday and Saturdays, July 6-August 18)
At Brookfield Zoo’s Summer Nights Concerts, presented by Meijer, the fun is just beginning when the sun begins to set. On Fridays and Saturdays, July 6 through August 18, from 4:00 to 9:00 p.m. guests of all ages can relax on the zoo’s East Mall while enjoying live music, roaming performers, family entertainment presented by JULIE, Inc., and a spectacular laser light show that culminates each evening. In addition, there is enhanced dining, beer and wine gardens, and of course, appearances by the zoo’s animal ambassadors. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Summer Sundays—Ralph’s World Concert
(July 15)—NEW EVENT
Families can rock out at Brookfield Zoo as its Summer Sundays kicks off with The Happiness Club taking the stage at 11:00 a.m. This energetic diverse group of kids from Chicago will have zoogoers on their feet and dancing during their creative musical show. Afterwards, Ralph’s World will entertain families with his interactive concert at 1:00 p.m. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Summer Sundays—LEGOLAND Day
(July 22 and August 19)—NEW EVENT
During Summer Sundays at Brookfield Zoo, kids can go wild with their creativity at LEGOLAND Day. Little designers can interact with a master builder from LEGOLAND Discovery Center Chicago–Schaumburg and watch as he builds something amazing on the zoo’s North Mall. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Summer Sundays—Beat Bugs™ Live
(August 5)—NEW EVENT
Characters from Beat Bugs™, the popular children’s animated TV series, will invade Brookfield Zoo’s Summer Sundays line up with three 25-minute adventurous live performances, featuring music inspired by the Beatles. Show times are at 10:00 a.m., 12:00 p.m., and 2:00 p.m. on the zoo’s East Mall. Youngsters can meet and take photos with the characters following each performance. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Kids’ Free Days at Brookfield Zoo
(August 6-8)
During Kids’ Free Days, children 11 and under are admitted free to Brookfield Zoo. Throughout each day, AMITA Health and Groupon will be sponsoring a variety of family-friendly activities on the zoo’s North Mall. Fun health-related games will engage and educate guests of all ages. In addition, zoogoers will have the opportunity to meet a few of Brookfield Zoo’s animal ambassadors. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Summer Sundays—PAW Patrol™ at Brookfield Zoo
(August 12)—NEW EVENT
Brookfield Zoo’s Summer Sundays is going to the dogs with special appearances by PAW Patrol™ characters Chase and Marshall. From 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. youngsters can meet and greet the two popular pups. Characters will make appearances for 40 minutes every hour, on the hour (first-come, first-served), so be sure to bring your camera. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
ZooRunRun for the Conservation Fund
(September 9)
Whether you’re as swift as a gazelle or prefer the slower pace of a turtle, everyone is invited to take part in Brookfield Zoo’s annual ZooRunRun for the Conservation Fund, dedicated to protecting animals around the world. The course takes place entirely inside the zoo and features a 5K chipped-time race and a one-mile chipped-time race for children 13 and under. Prices range from $20 to $35. The event is presented by Aquafina and Gatorade and sponsored by DuPage Medical Group. For more information and to register, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Cat Awareness Weekend
(September 29-30)
Visit Brookfield Zoo for a purr-fect weekend and learn about the zoo’s cats, from African lions, snow leopards, and Amur tigers, to servals, fishing cats, and domestic house cats. There will be special Zoo Chats and cat-themed activities for cat lovers of all ages. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Boo! at the Zoo
(October 13-14, 20-21, and 27-28)
Brookfield Zoo’s annual Halloween celebration provides a haunting good time for the entire family. The fun-filled event, presented by Ferrara Candy Company, features a 7,000-square-foot corn maze, giant pumpkin carving demonstrations, a costume parade and contest, and Halloween-themed crafts and activities each weekend. In addition, there will be special animal Zoo Chats about some of the zoo’s creepy critters. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Wines in the Wild
(October 27)
Sample exquisite wines and liquor from around the world, accompanied by hors d’oeuvres. The fundraiser, hosted by the Chicago Zoological Society’s Women’s Board, will be held from 7:30 to 10:00 p.m. in Brookfield Zoo’s Discovery Center and will also feature a raffle and silent auction. The cost is $120 per person, which includes the tasting, zoo admission, parking, and a commemorative wine glass. Special VIP packages are also available and feature exclusive fine wines and up-close experiences with some of the zoo’s animal ambassadors from 6:00 to 7:15 p.m. Choose from the $1,200 VIP Peacock Package for six tickets, the $500 VIP Macaw Package for two tickets, or the $275 VIP Parakeet Package for one ticket. For more information, call (708) 688-8393 or visit
Community and Corporate Tree Trim
(November 17-18)
Community organizations and corporations can get in the holiday spirit by joining in Tree Trim and help deck the malls at Brookfield Zoo as it prepares for its annual Holiday Magic festival. Groups, including scout troops, libraries, churches, school clubs, companies, and individual families, are all welcome to participate by decorating trees with handmade or store-bought ornaments. For more information or to reserve a tree for your organization or company, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Holiday Magic
(December 1-2, 8-9, 15-16, 22-23, and 26-31)
Brookfield Zoo’s Holiday Magic, presented by ComEd and Meijer, is Chicagoland’s longest-running lights festival and features more than one million twinkling lights, animated light displays, and a video light show. In addition, each evening includes a full schedule of live entertainment in the Holly Jolly Theater, professional ice carving demonstrations, singing to the animals, visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus (through December 23), and a model train display. Guests can also visit many of their favorite animals. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.
Breakfast with Santa (December 8-9 and 15-16)
Bring the family to Brookfield Zoo for a festive all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet in the Discovery Center. Santa and Mrs. Claus along with the zoo’s costumed characters will make an appearance for photo opportunities and to visit with children. Seatings are offered at 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. The cost, which includes tax, and gratuity, is $29.95 for adults and $21.95 for children ages 3-11. Children 2 and under eat for free. Reservations are required and seating is limited. For more information and to make reservations, visit or call (708) 688-8355.
Brunch with Santa
(December 9 and 16)
Head to Brookfield Zoo and bring your appetite for a delectable all-you-can-eat holiday brunch at Bocaditos. Enjoy an appearance by Santa and Mrs. Claus and costumed characters, who will be available for photos. Seatings are offered at 11:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. The cost, which includes tax and gratuity, is $43.95 for adults and $33.95 for children ages 3-11. Children 2 and under eat for free. Seating is limited. To make reservation or for additional information, visit or call (708) 688-8355.
Zoo Year’s Eve (December 31)
Ring in the New Year at Brookfield Zoo’s family-friendly Zoo Year’s Eve 2019 celebration. A live DJ sets the party tone in the Holly Jolly Theater, as do fun games, party favors, prizes, and an early countdown at 8:00 p.m. At Hamill Family Play Zoo, guests can make noisemakers and also enjoy an early kid-friendly countdown at 8:00 p.m.—especially great for guests with children ages 6 and under. For more information, visit or call (708) 688-8000.


Brookfield Zoo, located at 8400 31st Street in Brookfield, Ill., is open every day of the year from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. From Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day, zoo hours are 9:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (indoor animal exhibits close a half hour before the zoo closes).
Admission is $21.95 for adults and $15.95 for children ages 3-11 and seniors 65 and older. Children 2 and under are admitted free. Admission to the zoo is free on Tuesdays and Thursdays from October through December.
From early spring through late fall, Brookfield Zoo offers general zoo admission plus attraction packages at discounted rates. Group rates also are available to groups of 20 or more. For information on group rates, call (708) 688-8431.
Parking is $14 for cars and $20 for buses. (A Cook County parking tax is included).
For more details on admission packages, pricing, or to pre-purchase tickets or memberships, go to
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About the Chicago Zoological Society
The mission of the Chicago Zoological Society is to inspire conservation leadership by connecting people with wildlife and nature. The Chicago Zoological Society is a private nonprofit organization that operates Brookfield Zoo on land owned by the Forest Preserves of Cook County. The Society is known throughout the world for its international role in animal population management and wildlife conservation. Its Center for the Science of Animal Care and Welfare is at the forefront of animal care that strives to discover and implement innovative approaches to zoo animal management. Brookfield Zoo is the first zoo in the world to be awarded the Humane Certified™ certification mark for the care and welfare of its animals, meeting American Humane Association’s rigorous certification standards. Open every day of the year, the zoo is located at 8400 31st Street in Brookfield, Illinois, between the Stevenson (I-55) and Eisenhower (I-290) expressways and is also accessible via the Tri-State Tollway (I-294), Metra commuter line, CTA and PACE bus service. For further information, visit


Sondra Katzen
Media Relations Manager
Office: 708-688-8351
Cell Phone: 708-903-2071


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