Special Events

Cosley Zoo hosts a variety of events every year, including the popular Run for the Animals in June and The Festival of Lights & Christmas Tree Sales in December.

Pumpkin Fest

October 1-31

Taking in the beautiful fall colors at Cosley Zoo is a must do! Come see the animals in the crisp fall air, listen to the squeals of excitement from the children conquering the straw pyramid or finding their way through the corn stalk tunnel, and take in the thousands of pumpkins scattered on the zoo’s lawn.

Apples, gourds, pumpkins, cider, cornstalks, and various sizes of straw bales are available to purchase. Be sure and check out the fall merchandise in the Wild Side Gift Shop, too. Proceeds from your purchases benefit Cosley Zoo.

  • Text COSLEY to 50555 & receive 10% off your pumpkin(s) purchase!*
  • Regular admission rates apply

*MSG & data rates may apply

Sponsorship opportunities available!  Learn more here or contact Cosley Foundation Development Director T. J. Hicks at 630-510-5105 or tjhicks@wheatonparks.org.


Carnival Sponsor:


Pumpkin Patch Sponsor:
bear paddle logo

pumpkin fest

Spooktacular–SOLD OUT

Friday, October 28 | 5:30-7 pm and 7-8:30 pm

Don’t miss this fall festival full of Halloween fun! Come dressed in costume to enjoy loads of activities. Take a stroll through our “not so scary” straw maze, a gander around the spooky pond path, meet live animals, carve or decorate a pumpkin, play games, enjoy refreshments and make crafts. Stop at various stations along the Trick or Treat Trek to collect your supply of holiday goodies.

Pre-registration is required. Space is limited, so register early. Non-refundable payment is due at the time of registration.


Festival of Lights and Tree Sales

November 25-December 30

A winter visit to Cosley Zoo has become a family tradition for many. Make sure it is one of yours! Cosley Zoo is transformed into a winter wonderland with 20,000 twinkling lights creating spectacular displays, an amazing selection of Christmas trees for you to purchase, hot chocolate, and holiday gifts. The Festival of Lights and Tree Sales begin the day after Thanksgiving (11/25/16) and continue through December 30. The zoo is open 9 am-9 pm daily; lights come on at 3 pm. All proceeds support the zoo, its animals, programs and development.

  • Zoo Admissions is free during the Festival of Lights and Tree Sales. Donations are greatly appreciated.
  • Cosley Zoo is closed on Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day
  • Cosley Zoo is open 9A-Noon on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve

Sponsorship opportunities available! Learn more here or contact Cosley Foundation Development Director T. J. Hicks at 630-510-5105 or tjhicks@wheatonparks.org.

Presented by:


christmas tree

Christmas Tree Lane – SOLD OUT

Gather together your scout group, friends, coworkers or family members to help decorate Cosley Zoo for the holidays! We provide a lit five-foot tree and you provide wildlife-friendly ornaments and imagination. Trees are displayed through December. Payment is due upon reservation; trees are limited so call today!

  • $45/ tree – SOLD OUT
  • Limit 35 trees
  • Trees decorating to take place November 27-December 3

Sponsored by:

Gerry & Robyn Dempsey


Santa’s Craft Corner

Saturday Nov. 26, Dec. 3, 10 | 10 am-2 pm

Can’t make it to the North Pole? Do the next best thing and come to Cosley Zoo where you can see Santa AND the animals! While visiting Santa, make a craft or two and enjoy refreshments.

  • $5/ family donation
  • $3 for printed photo with Santa

Santa’s Craft Corner Treat Sponsor: 

Costco   window works logo

Save the Date:

Cosley Run for the Animals 2017

Saturday, June 3, 2017


Interested in sponsoring an event?

Please contact Margie Wilhelmi, Director of Marketing, at 630-510-4984 or mwilhelmi@wheatonparks.org.


Benefiting Cosley Zoo

Proceeds from all events support Cosley Zoo and its activities, including educational programs and wildlife conservation.