October 20 2020

Spooky Kits for family-friendly, educational outdoor fun this season

Spooky season has arrived and MetroParks wants you to have safe, seasonal fun in your MetroParks or back yard. Spooky Kits encourage families to get outside, enjoy nature and experience the changing of the seasons together. Kits are specific to one of three MetroParks (Wegerzyn Gardens, Carriage Hill and Cox Arboretum MetroParks), with an option for an at-home experience. Kits that have a designated park can be used in the parks anytime between pick up and Saturday, Oct. 31. 

Designed for a family of four, each park kit includes a themed adventure walk and a specific animal to learn about. Spooky kits also contain a scavenger hunt that highlights the theme and provides information about the designated park’s animal. At-home kits include nature information and activities, and suggestions for transforming your outdoor area into a seasonal space for crafts, exploration and games.

Each kit includes a pumpkin, in addition to videos from MetroParks naturalists that help your family explore the trails, play games and more.

Note: Because kits are for families of four, families with additional children may want to purchase more than one kit.

Family Fall Discovery Kit

Park you will explore: Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark

Animal you will learn about: Spiders

Pick up: Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark, Oct 21, 22, 26 or 27, between 4 to 6 p.m.

Appropriate for all ages; $6/kit

Discover the fall differences in plants and learn more about the secret lives of spiders on a scavenger hunt through the gardens and woods at Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark. Use the TaleBlazer app (instructions included in the kit) for fun facts and clues about animals.

Create two spider crafts, use fun spider tattoos and learn more about spiders using the included fact sheet. Links to videos and lessons about the magic of spiders are also included.

Find the three spookiest trees in Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark to top off your spooky experience.

After you head home, carve your pumpkin and enjoy games, activities and special surprises in your kit to keep your spooky adventures going throughout the season.

Magic of Fall Changes Kit

Park you will explore: Cox Arboretum MetroPark

Animal you will learn about: Owls

Pick up: Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark, Oct 21, 22, 26 or 27, between 4 to 6 p.m.

Appropriate for all ages; $6/kit

Take in fall’s beautiful colors as your family embarks on a scavenger hunt in the woods, gardens, prairie and ponds at Cox Arboretum MetroPark. The scavenger hunt also features a fascinating look at owl habitats and the TaleBlazer app (instructions are included in the kit) provides information about animal identification year-round.

This kit also includes two owl crafts, an owl mask, owl fact sheet and links to lessons/videos about the amazing world of owls.

Because Cox Arboretum MetroPark is home to impressive oak trees, the kit also has information about the lives of three different types of oaks and their acorns.

After you head home, carve your pumpkin and enjoy games, activities and special surprises in your kit to keep your spooky adventures going throughout the season.

1880s Farm Experience Kit

Park you will explore: Carriage Hill MetroPark

Animal you will learn about: Bats

Pick up: Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark, Oct 21, 22, 26 or 27, between 4 to 6 p.m.

Appropriate for all ages; $6/kit

Experience fall in the 1880s on the Historical Farm at Carriage Hill MetroPark, once inhabited by the Arnold family. This kit contains a special booklet with 19th century Halloween games, activities, a seasonal story, recipe and diary entries from the Arnold diary.

Find fall changes on a scavenger hunt that takes you around the Historical Farm, prairie and lake. You’ll also discover places where bats live and use the TaleBlazer app (instructions are included in the kit) and how farmers used these skills.

This kit contains two bat crafts, a bat mask and a bat fact sheet, in addition to video links and links to lessons about these amazing nocturnal creatures.

After you head home, carve your pumpkin and enjoy games, activities and special surprises in your kit to keep your spooky adventures going throughout the season.

Spooky Fall Nature Adventure at Home Kit

Explore in your favorite greenspace or own back yard

Pick up: Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark, Oct 21, 22, 26 or 27, between 4 to 6 p.m.

Appropriate for all ages; $6/kit

For families who want to keep their spooky adventure at home, the Spooky Fall nature Adventure at Home Kit includes step-by-step decorating plans for your outdoor space, including spaces for crafts, games and opportunities to explore.

Also included is a guide to creating a scavenger hunt for your yard or next adventure in a natural space. Enjoy nature activities and links to animal videos and nature lessons. Set up three games for your family and find instructions for four different crafts.

Have fun carving your pumpkin with included pumpkin carving ideas, plus pumpkin seeds and ideas on how to plant them next year.

Because this kit can be used anytime, there are nighttime activities to keep everyone buys, learning, playing and discovering.

Five Rivers MetroParks visitors should always follow the CDC’s recommendations, particularly for social distancing and wearing face coverings, while spending time outdoors. For the most current information on MetroParks’ COVID-19 response and related closures, visit metroparks.org/covid-19 and follow Five Rivers MetroParks on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube

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