Morton Arboretum’s Illumination Will be a Driving Experience This Year

Driving Experience
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Driving Experience

This coming winter, the Morton Arboretum’s annual Illumination: Tree Lights at the Morton Arboretum will be a Driving Experience.

Returning for its eighth year, the different experience will feature new displays, a customized music soundtrack, and exhibits that are returning favorites. Guests will remain in their cars and can tune int a synced musical soundtrack on their radio while driving through nearly two miles.

“The safety of Illumination guests during this pandemic was the top priority in our decision to transform it into a driving experience this year,” said Alicia LaVire, vice president of marketing and communications. “It also gave us the opportunity to create an innovative new twist on this tree-focused exhibition that can’t be seen anywhere else.”

The exhibition begins with passage through a new tunnel of lights and will lead guests to old favorites including Symphony Woods, Woodland Wonder, and Crystal Promenade.

What’s New?

There will be a total of 11 exhibits, including five new ones. Also new this year are Illumination’s extended hours. It will be open until 10 p.m. on Sundays through Thursdays and until 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

As in previous years, the event will be on display on Thanksgiving, Christmas and Christmas Eve, New Years Eve, and New Years Day.

“No matter how physically distanced we are from others, this year’s Illumination is designed to be a shared experience, bringing much-needed celebration and joy to the holiday season,” said John Featherstone, the exhibitions lighting designer.


Tickets for Illumination are per vehicle and go on sale for members only on October 1-7, then will be available to the public beginning October 8.

You can purchase tickets online or at the arboretum’s visitor center in advance. Tickets will not be sold on-side during the event.

Illumination will run starting November 20 through January 3, 2021.

Naperville News 17’s Aysha Ashley Househ reports.