Friday October 19    
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm


The Nature Institute
2213 South Levis Lane, Godfrey, IL, 62035

Event Type

Where Halloween meets the preserve, The 17th annual Enchanted Forest will work its way onto TNI trails for an evening of fun, imagination, and environmental education. This long-standing event will be receiving an overhaul this year as more activities are planned to be added. Old favorites, like the moonlight stroll through the woods to see and hear facts from some nocturnal woodland creatures, will be joining new adventures with a map of scattered booths and activities. This event is a made to be a drop in and stay for self-guided exploration through our Enchanted Forest. This event is child friendly, although all are welcome. Come dressed as you are or get into the spooky spirit with a Halloween costume.

Families can learn about:

  • Skulls and other animal bones
  • Eye shine: Why can we see some creatures’ eyes light up as we drive past them at night?
  • Use your sense of smell in the “Scent Trail”
  • View some of your favorite animal pelts and furs up close
  • Bats: The nighttime pollinator and its place within our ecosystem
  • Constellation Stories
  • View the night sky with TNI’s Astronomy Association
  • After dinner bugs: What bugs like it most when the sun goes down?

Admission is $5 and registration is requested. Let us know you will be attending with the form below. Payment will not be collected until you arrive to the event.

Don’t forget about the pre-carved pumpkin contest!

This year, the event will include a pre-carved pumpkin contest. See details below for your chance to win some great prizes.

  • All entries may be dropped off the day of the event (October 19) as early as 2:30pm and must be submitted no later than 5:15pm to the contest organizers at The Nature Institute Talahi Lodge.
  • The bottom of the entered pumpkins must be removed so that the pumpkin can be placed on top of an LED light (provided by TNI). Cutting the top of a pumpkin off causes the top lid to shrink and decay very quickly so the lid falls inside. Pumpkins with the top cut off will be disqualified.
  • The carved pumpkins must be able to stand without any support or back drop needed.
  • Inappropriate pumpkins will be disqualified.
  • Designs can be original or commercial stencils.
  • Pumpkins are not to be painted or otherwise decorated. Only carved pumpkins will be entered into the contest.
  • Pumpkins will be peer judged the evening of Enchanted Forest.

Pumpkin Carver Categories
Winning pumpkins will be featured on The Nature Institute’s facebook page and website. Winners will also receive the following prizes:

  • Kids up to 12 years – Free hike and campfire for winning carver and their 10 closest friends
  • Teens 13-17 years old – Free hour-long archery lesson for winner and five friends
  • Adults 18 years and older – $50 Cash Prize

Bring your filled out registration card and entry fee with your pumpkin at drop off. Your pumpkin will be assigned a number by organizers and put out for judging.

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