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Autumn at the Arboretum 2023

Additional Information

Join Klehm the first weekend in October to experience a wide variety of educational programs, activities and more to celebrate the fall season!

Friday, October 6th:

Fall Smartphone Tour & Scavenger Hunt

Saturday, October 7th:

Apple Talk & Tasting with Valley Orchard

10 – 11:30am

Visitors Center Gallery

Join Valley Orchard at Klehm for a FREE educational talk about growing apples and delicious apple tasting. Sample a variety of unique and exciting new apple varieties that you can only find at local orchards. All ages are welcome! Pre-registration is requested to ensure we have enough apples for the tasting. Learn more and register here.

Fall Bulb Fundraiser

9am – 4pm

Gift Shop

Buy your spring bulbs to plant this fall and support Klehm at the same time! Choose from a selection of crocus, daffodils, tulips, and allium to add color to your spring garden. 

Sunday, October 8th:

Autumn at the Arboretum Family Fun Day

10am – 2pm

Join us for kids’ games, crafts, community partner activity booths, a straw bale maze, live music, and more!

Pizza Fresca Cuccina Food Truck – 10am – 2pm 

Location: Parking Lot

Kids’ crafts – 10am – 2pm (as supplies last)

Location: Garden Pavilion

Kids’ games & family yard games – 10am – 2pm

Location: Clarcor lawn & Fountain Garden

Community partner activity stations – 10am – 2pm

Location: Fountain Garden

  • Forest Preserves of Winnebago County
  • Ag in the Classroom
  • Illinois 4-H
  • Discovery Center Museum
  • Burpee Museum of Natural History
  • Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens
  • Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful

Kids’ Pumpkin Decorating Contest

Location: Garden Pavilion

How to enter:

  1. Carve or decorate a pumpkin at home! (Pumpkins will not be available at Klehm)
  2. Bring prepared pumpkin to Klehm’s Garden Pavilion between 10 and 11 a.m. on Sunday
  3. Guests at Autumn at the Arboretum will vote for their favorite pumpkin between 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
  4. Winners will be announced at 1:15 p.m. at the Fountain Garden stage (must be present to win)

Judging categories:

  • Best carved pumpkin – NO template
  • Best carved pumpkin – using a template
  • Best decorated pumpkin – NOT carved

Age categories:

  • 7 and under
  • 8 – 13 years old
  • 14 – 18 years old

Espinosa & Coffey – Live Music – 11am – 1pm 

Location: Fountain Garden

Cake Walk – 12pm & 1pm

Location: Fountain Garden

Doggy Costume Contest – 1:30pm

Location: Fountain Garden

How to enter:

  1. Register your dog in our Garden Pavilion at the Klehm booth anytime before 1:15 p.m.
  2. Bring your dog to the Fountain Garden before 1:30 to line up for the costume parade.
  3. Audience members will vote by applause for their favorite doggy costume.

Subarea:Rockford South

Autumn at the Arboretum 2023
  • October 6, 2023 - October 8, 2023
  • Klehm Arboretum and Botanic Garden
  • Free admission