Top 10 Things To Do In October 2022 - Visit Lake County - Blog

Top 10 Things To Do In October 2022

By: Nick Borowitz 09/30/2022

Fall is officially here, folks! So break out the fleece blankets, rock some flannel and get yourself a pumpkin spice latte. These are the top 10 things to do in October 2022.

With the changing of the seasons comes the color explosion of the trees and foliage in Lake County! Check these spots out when looking for that ideal autumn photoshoot. Grab a drink on the Lake County Libation Trail while out celebrating autumn!

The fall season means festivals galore! Click here to find even more reasons to celebrate. Don't forget to get lost in a corn maze and pick a pumpkin for the spookiest day of the year.

Fright Fest presented by SNICKERS® at Six Flags Great America is a spooky good time. Don't forget to check out the Kids BOO Fest during the day and get something to eat for their Oktoberfest Food Festival.


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Richardson Adventure Farm (@richardsonadventurefarm)

Richardson Adventure Farm has partnered with 9th Hour Brewing Co. in Lake Villa to make Nature Walk. The American pale ale is made with spruce tips harvested from Richardson Adventure Farm this past spring. The adventure destination also borrows an Aston Martin from Volo Museum to celebrate 60 years of a-maize-ing fun!

Here are the top ten things to do in October 2022.

1. #LetsSnapLakeCounty Photo Contest (Through October 31)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Visit Lake County, Illinois (@visitlakecounty)

“A picture is worth a thousand words” is an adage as old as time. Visit Lake County wants to see how true that is with the third installment of the #LetsSnapLakeCounty Photo Contest. An individual may submit up to five photos or videos. Up to seven winners of the #LetsSnapLakeCounty Photo Contest can win a $100 VISA gift card as well as a photo credit in future tourism marketing materials. Head to for submission, or post your pictures on Instagram using the contest’s hashtag. Visit Lake County will announce a grand prize winner as well as subcategory winners in the following categories:

The photo contest ends October 31.

2. Spooks & Spirits: Autumn Celebration and the 10-day Check-In Challenge (Through October 31)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Visit Lake County, Illinois (@visitlakecounty)

Sit for a spell and enjoy the potions from the Spooks and Spirits: Lake County, Illinois Autumn Celebration. In the land of lakes, the six-week experience highlights the area’s family festivities, spine-tingling scares, and the seasonal offerings of breweries, wineries and distilleries crafted by the Lake County Libation Trail. Be A-MAIZE-D by corn mazes and pumpkin patches at Didier Farms Pumpkinfest in Lincolnshire and Richardson Adventure Farm in Spring Grove. Check out the latest Halloween events and travel packages at While out enjoying the fantastic establishments that Lake County has to offer, don't forget to take part in the 10-Day Check-In Challenge. For the October challenge, brew, wine and spirit enthusiasts can check in via mobile device. An individual will have a chance to win a grand prize, soon to be revealed. Stay tuned. The 10-Day Check-In Challenge and The Spooks and Spirits: Lake County, Illinois Autumn Celebration runs through Halloween.

3. Fright Fest presented by SNICKERS® at Six Flags Great America (Through October 31)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Six Flags Great America (@sfgreat_america)

Thrills and chills abound at Six Flags Great America with Fright Fest presented by SNICKERS®. Indulge in the theme park’s haunted houses, roller coasters and scare zones. The spooky spectacle features musical performances in the streets of Six Flags Great America. New for this year is Kids BOO Fest. The kid-friendly festival keeps the amusements tame during the day. Children can trick or treat on the Character Candy Trail, navigate through a hay maze and jive in the Monster Bash Dance Party. The family will work up an appetite while riding coasters, getting scared silly and dancing for the street shows. Grab a bite to eat at Six Flags Great America's Oktoberfest Food Festival. The all-new smorgasbord is the perfect place where you can sit back with authentic German cuisine and beverages while listening to traditional music on the Mooseburger Patio in Yukon Territory. When the clock strikes 6 p.m., creatures adorned in ghoulish garb roam the park while spooking people walking through the scare zones. There are six haunted houses, each with its unique theme. The haunted houses require an extra pass and the park entrance fee. After 6 p.m., the festivities are geared to individuals ages 13 and older. Visit for performance times, tickets, haunted house and additional information. Fright Fest presented by SNICKERS®, runs on select days through Halloween.

4. October Festivals in Lake County (Through October 31)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Great Highwood Pumpkin Fest (@greathighwoodpumpkinfest)

Autumn in Lake County is a time of celebration, fun and spending time with family. You don't have to look hard to find tasty treats, community festivities, kids' activities, large fruits and more exciting experiences. We put together a list of festivals for the fall season, but check out these parties that are only happening in October!

5. Haunted Locales of Lake County (Through November 5)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Dungeon of Doom Haunted House (@dungeonofdoom)

Every fall, there is a “Monster Mash,” and the haunted attractions in Lake County never fail to scare. There is an abundance of courageous souls out there that want to brave the storm of a professional scarer. That said, Lake County holds a Master’s Degree in terrifying individuals. So for the next month, get your fill of spooks because Lake County has your haunted attraction of choice. Let’s take a look at the haunted attractions in Lake County and give you “proof that there had been a nightmare, on my street!”

Ghost Stories Plus! at Volo Bog State Natural Area (October 8-9)

Experience the spookier side of this beautiful area and hear tales that could be true or just fun to listen to. Which is which? Well, you'll have to be there when the sun sets. Jim May of The Friends of Volo Bog will tell tales about the Haunted Woods and more. Autumn refreshments are available for sale in the Visitor Center to keep you from becoming parched!

Antioch Ghost Tour (October 21)

Be on the haunt in downtown Antioch and learn about the paranormal happenings of the village. Guided by the U.S. Paranormal Research Organization, participants are divided into several groups and will walk through assigned venues. At the end of the tour, there will be a Q&A session at the Antioch Theatre, followed by a free viewing of “Paranormal Island.”

Realm of Terror in Round Lake Beach (Through October 31)

The Realm of Terror Horror Experience is one of Chicago and Milwaukee’s premier Halloween attractions in Round Lake Beach. Thrill-seekers and Halloween enthusiasts can expect their biggest and craziest production to date at the ‘Realm.’ The house of scares has been featured in the Huff Post, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and WGN.

Dungeon of Doom in Zion (Through November 5)

You may be wondering what’s going on in the old Briquette Factory in Zion. The award-winning Dungeon of Doom Haunted House has moved there and has done its duty in providing a scare zone that doesn’t disappoint. For 25 years, this place has earned its reputation for presenting an extremely bone-chilling, wild-ride in Lake County as they celebrate their quarter of century undead (birth)day.

Devil's Gate in Libertyville

According to legend, there was an all-girls school that was located inside where present-day Independence Grove stands. Apparently, one day, someone broke into the school, murdering many of the girls. Unfortunately, the structure is no longer there, but the front gate still remains. Will you pass through what remains of the structure?

Cuba Road in Long Grove and Barrington

It is said that a black ghost car appears at night near a cemetery on the infamous road. A female spirit on the path emerges carrying a lantern asking drivers for help, but she ultimately vanishes in an instant when they stop for aid. Gangsters also frequented the road during the Prohibition era.

Karcher Hotel in Waukegan

This Waukegan hotel was built in the 1920s. In the 1980s, a fire killed and injured many of its inhabitants. It is said the fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth and basement levels are haunted by a cascade of voices. Orbs have also been caught on security footage.

White Cemetery in Barrington

Glowing orbs, a disappearing house, a glowing mist, a black car and voices of spirits have all been heard or seen at the Barrington cemetery. It is also said that photographs do not develop when taken at White Cemetery.

6. Spooky Theatre in Lake County (Through October 29)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Waukegan Park District (@waukeganparkdistrict)

Theatre and the autumn weather are just two things that blend together so well. Some enjoy the spooky side of the season, and others know that it's the time when the theatre circuit is starting to warm up. Lake County has no shortage of the performing arts, and they go well into winter and beyond. But we went ahead and picked some out that will scratch both the itch of those that enjoy haunted stories and the thespians among us. So read on below to find a show to kick back and take in the low-lighting atmosphere of the theatres in Lake County.

Little Shop of Horrors at Citadel Theatre Company (Through October 16)

Citadel Theatre brings its autumn production of “The Little Shop of Horrors” to the stage. The play is based on the 1960 Roger Corman-directed film. The play follows the store attendant Seymour and his co-worker crush Audrey. Audrey’s sadistic dentist boyfriend and a man-eating plant threatening the world’s existence are thrown into the mix.

Scream (1996) at Side Lot Brewery (October 7)

Watch Wes Craven's 1996 original that introduced the world to "Ghost Face" and countless spin-off movies at Side Lot Brewery. Then, enjoy a cold craft beer, cheesy horror and the outdoor lawn of the Wauconda brewery.

Theresa Caputo Live! at Genesee Theatre (October 14)

Theresa Caputo has shared her psychic gift with millions for 14 seasons on "Long Island Medium." The TLC-made star is bringing a one-of-a-kind performance to the Genesee Theatre just in time for the season of scares. Who knows, she might even pick audience members for psychic readings!

Shaun of the Dead at Side Lot Brewery(October 14)

Zombies, two best friends and a simple desire to make it to the Winchester for a pint while the whole thing blows over. Visit Side Lot Brewery and watch the first movie that brought actor Simon Pegg's dry-wit British comedy to the big screen.

Fox Lake Murder Mystery (October 21)

Experience an evening of mystery, murder and delicious food at Maravela's Banquets & Catering. The Village of Fox Lake hosts this savory caper with a buffet dinner. Who knew solving a murder would work up an appetite?

Día de Muertos/Day of the Dead at the Jack Benny Center (October 22)

Día de Muertos is the celebration of life, death and rebirth. This holiday tradition is a main-stay celebration of international cultures from Mexico and South America to parts of Europe and The Philippines. Visit the Jack Benny Center for Arts to view performances and learn about the symbolism behind the Sugar Skull.

Ghostbusters at Side Lot Brewery (October 21)

Four guys, an iconic car and bringing the word "ectoplasm" to the mainstream. Hang out at Side Lot Brewery on the patio and watch the 1984 original that introduced the world to the iconic franchise.

Muppets Haunted Mansion at Side Lot Brewery (October 28)

Gonzo and Pepe decided to skip out on the Muppets' annual Halloween party to test their bravery. As it turns out, their bravery and sanity will be pushed beyond their limits in this hilarious tale that both adults and kids will love.

Dracula: A Live Radio Play presented by Improv Playhouse (October 28-29)

The original vampire, Dracula, invites all brave enough to the Improv Playhouse. Much like a vampire must be welcomed inside, the Improv Playhouse invites you to experience their stage production of the 1938 Orson Welles Mercury Radio Theatre production of Bram Stoker's classic, Dracula!

7. Pumpkin Picking in Lake County


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by D E M I (@demifromthesouth)

“There are three things I’ve learned never to discuss with people: religion, politics, and the Great Pumpkin.” – Linus from the Peanuts.

When life gives you pumpkin, make pumpkin spice lattes. Fall is here, and this is the time when people go pumpkin crazy. Pumpkin picking might be one of the most popular activities of the season. Whether you’re looking for a pumpkin to cut spooky Halloween shapes, give your dinner table some pizzazz with the enormous orange fruit, complete your cornucopia or just have a family fun fall adventure, Lake County has you covered. Click the "INFO" button to find locations to view unique carvings, seasonal farmer markets and a spot to pick up your family pumpkin in Lake County. Make sure you take a photo and/or video and submit it with your orange berry to the #LetsSnapLakeCounty Photo Contest.

8. Jack-o'-Lantern World at Paulus Park in Lake Zurich (Through October 30)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Jack O'Lantern World (@jackolanternworld)

Lake Zurich is celebrating lighted pumpkins at Paulus Park. Jack-O’-Lantern World takes over the park starting Friday. The fantastic visual of thousands of illuminated, hand-carved pumpkins by over 50 local artisans is a unique seasonal sight. This orange-fruit display showcases a three-fourths mile trail highlighted by 17 immersive themed worlds of the jack-o’-lanterns. The event runs on select days through Halloween, and visitors must register online at for their timeslots.

9. Howl-o-Ween at Great Wolf Lodge Illinois (Through October 31)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Great Wolf Lodge (@greatwolflodge)

Have yourself a scary good time this Howl-O-Ween at the Great Wolf Lodge Illinois. Why let Halloween come once a day this year? Get the wolf pack together and visit the Gurnee attraction for their Howl-o-Ween experience! They feature spooktacular special events and unmissable treats for the entire family. Bring your costumes and scare up joyful memories between September 30 and October 31. All of the Howl-o-Ween events are included with an overnight stay. Download their Great Wolf App for their daily schedule of events throughout the month, including:

10. Halloween Hikes at Ryerson Conservation Area (October 21-22)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Lake County Forest Preserves (@lcfpd)

Bring the family to Lake County Forest Preserves District’s long-standing tradition of the Halloween Hikes! Join a guided group hike along a candlelit path in Ryerson Woods to watch fun nature-themed skits, followed by donuts and cider in front of a fire in a log cabin. This Halloween program is in no way, shape or form scary, so even the family's youngest members will have fun. Hikes last 90 minutes, and each group departs in 30-minute intervals. The candlelit path is approximately one-and-a-half miles long.

BONUS: Svengoolie Meet & Greet at Volo Museum! (October 29)


View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Volo Museum (@volomuseum)

Here is your chance for a meet & greet with the iconic Svengoolie at Volo Museum! Included with the price of admission, you can meet Svengoolie and get a professional picture taken at no extra cost. The event runs from 1-3 p.m. But be sure to get there early as fans, both young and old, love the Chicago icon. Svengoolie has been Chicago's premier horror show icon since the multiple Emmy Award-winner Rich Koz became the hand-picked successor to the original Svengoolie in the late 1970s. He has appeared on a national basis on MeTV since April 2011 - and generations of viewers have become fans of the monstrous mirth and movies that this video vampire dispenses weekly over the airwaves.

For more experiences beyond the top 10 things to do in October 2022, continue here.

#LetsSnapLakeCounty Photo Contest has multiple categories to compete in and chances to win a $100 VISA gift card. Get snapping!

Spooks & Spirits: Lake IL, Autumn Celebration has something for everyone!

Speaking of photography, check these spots out when looking for that ideal autumn photoshoot.

Fright Fest presented by SNICKERS® at Six Flags Great America has something for the whole family to enjoy.

Special Offers
Calendar of Events
Lake County Libation Trail
Free Visitors Guide
Tour Itineraries
Print Page
Road Trips Video