Holiday Magic


Date: Saturdays and Sundays in December plus December 28 to 31
Open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Festivities Begin at 4 p.m.

Presented by  ComEd     

Sponsored by  

See the Lights. Feel the Magic. Continue the Tradition.

Chicagoland’s Largest Lights Festival
Over One Million Twinkling LED Lights
New Polar Lights
Your Magical Touch Will Color the Sky with an Interactive Light Extravaganza and Dazzling Music
Plus a 41-Foot Talking Tree, Interactive Tic-Tac Snow, Train Display, Carolers, Ice carvers, and Much More!

Highlights include:

Opening Ceremony on December 5th at 5:00 p.m.
With performances by: Vivid Dance

Isaiah Glass
Special Guest: Isaiah Grass - Chicago local Pop Singer performing "Christmas With You"
Seasons Greetings Carolers

  • Polar Lights where your magical touch will color the sky with an interactive light extravaganza and dazzling music, including 30 moving lights that you will enable you to control the colors and shapes and four pixel-mapped LED trees that are capable of generating patterns with thousands of different colors.

Interactive Tic-Tac-Snow board light display will allow guests to play the classic game, but instead of X’s and O’s we will have polar bears and penguins.

Wild Encounters will be open during Holiday Magic. The parakeet aviary will be closed. Admission will be free.

  • Photos with the Animals will take place in the ITW Animal Ambassador building. We will feature animals from Wild Encounters including alpaca, llama, reindeer and Animal Ambassadors. Photos with the Animals will be closed on December 12th due to a private event.

  • A special 6:00 p.m. Dolphins in Action is back!

  • Photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus will be in Seven Seas Underwater Viewing on December 5-6, 12-13, 19-20.

Holiday Magic Gate Handout (PDF)

Many of our indoor exhibits will be open for viewing favorite animals, plus there will be Singing to the Animals (Reindeer, Big Cats, Bears) and special Zoo Chats. In addition, the zoo restaurants and food stands will be open with full menus and holiday treats, and gift shops will have hundreds of unique items for those hard-to-shop-for loved ones.

Enjoy a full schedule of nightly music and entertainment in the Pavilions. Also on the schedule are nightly ice carving demonstrations, an amazing magic show, costumed characters, a model railroad display, and a 41 foot LED Talking Tree.

Backstage Adventures at Brookfield Zoo

Behind the Scenes Adventure!

Go behind-the-scenes when you register for Backstage Adventures at Brookfield Zoo.

Sign Up for Zoo Classes

Parents and young explorers can experience serious fun at one of our Family Play Classes!

Teacher Classes at Brookfield Zoo

Register for Teacher Classes

Teachers can choose from a wide variety of uniqe courses for continuing education credit at Brookfield Zoo.

Free Admission for Military Personnel

To show appreciation for the hard work and dedication of the men and women in the United States Armed Forces, the Chicago Zoological Society is offering free admission to Brookfield Zoo to all active, reservist, and retired members of the military. Qualified personnel who present a valid ID at one of the zoo's admission booths will be admitted free of charge.