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14 Oct - 5 Reasons to Visit Chicago This Fall

Chicago

Watching summer disappear is definitely difficult, but watching autumn take the lead is incredibly beautiful—especially in Chicago. From gorgeous autumn foliage, fresh (hard) apple cider, fires, pies, to Halloween tricks and treats… This transitional season is truly heartwarming. Did we mention fall in Chicago is especially magical? Here are five reasons why:

1. Witchy Workshops

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The first step toward celebrating this spooky season is to get in the spirit! The annual Spellbound Halloween at Freehand Chicago is an exclusive event where guests get the chance to fully immerse themselves in the best fall activities. From smudge stick workshops, cauldron cocktails, palm readings, temporary tattoos and killer tunes — Spellbound Halloween is the perfect start to the ghoulish season.

2. Psychedelic Halloween Party

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Halloween is just around the corner, which means celebrations full of tricks and treats are in store — Freehand Chicago’s got your Halloweekend covered. This year, we’re getting psychedelic. We’ll start the party and toast to the season with new, scary delicious Broken Shaker cocktails. Then, Chicago’s own Post Animal, White Mystery and DJ Dave Mata will takeover The Den and bring us on a strangely awesome musical journey. All the while, Sara Goodman’s trippy projections will set the groovy vibe just right. Give your Halloweekend a far-out start!

3. Unreal Beautiful Fall Foliage

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Put on your scarf and sweater, grab your pumpkin spice coffee, make sure your camera’s in hand and head over to the Chicago Botanic Garden, which is especially beautiful this time of year. One step into the Garden and you’ll be surrounded by color — the Japanese maple trees transform to a fiery red, while filigreed sumac trees blend orange, yellow and green. Start at the Visitor Center, then head along the Garden’s East Road for a show of autumn colors from trees obviously competing for attention. Once you make your way through the Japanese and Waterfall Gardens, you’ll eventually end up at the Plant Science Center for a final revelation of an autumn Chi-town paradise.

4. Spooky Chicago Sights

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Looking to get a little spooked? Chicago’s historic Graceland Cemetery should definitely do the trick. This North-side cemetery is both beautiful and eerie, with more than a few creepy urban legends up its sleeve. One of the more conspicuous is the story of Dexter Graves’ monument. The final resting place for this former hotel owner/businessman was named “Eternal Silence” by the designer and was originally completely black. With time, more menacing stories came to the surface, and soon the monument got a creepier shade and different nickname: “Statue of Death.” Legend has it that if a person looks in the face of the statue, they’ll see their own death. Even more frightening and inexplicable—the statue is apparently impossible to photograph. The only way to find out the truth is to experience the mystery for yourself!

5. Fall Food!

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Photo cred: @aberdeenskitchen

Colder weather calls for comfort food, and who doesn’t like to indulge once in awhile? While there’s plenty of fall treats, all that sweet needs a savory balance. Chicago Chili Fest is a legendary outdoor party in River North, only a short walk from Freehand Chicago. For one weekend only, showcases from the city’s finest gourmet chili vendors, craft beer tastings from awesome Chi-town breweries and highly anticipated football games will all be in one place. Catch the Chicago spirit and kick off the season right!