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Walking Plays at The Morton Arboretum


  • Actors portraying the Sherlock Scandal walking play
  • Visitors walking on a paved path during a performance

Schedule and location

Plays begin at the Thornhill shelter on the West Side. 

Showtime will be at 6:00 p.m. on select dates in July and August.

Showtime will be at 4:00 p.m. on select dates in October.

Walk along with the action of your favorite literary tales performed live among 1,700 acres of trees and beautiful landscapes. All Walking Plays are approximately 90 minutes in length and 1 mile in hiking distance. 


2020 Season:


July 11, 12, 18, 19, 25, 26
6:00 p.m. showtime
In this original folk musical, go back in time, to experience the earliest days of America.  Johnny Appleseed, as he came to be known, is one of the most beloved American folk heroes.  Walking along with Johnny and some of his hundreds of miles he covered in his lifetime, audiences become part of this true-life expedition to plant seeds of love, tolerance, and of course....Apples!  John Chapman was a true pioneer; whose story has amazing relevance today.  The "fictorical" tale includes examples of his dedication to inclusion, environmental awareness, and how he lovingly taught perseverance through the example of his incredible journey.  A lighthearted but heart-warming experience, for all ages, told through beautiful, toe-tapping live folk music.

August 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, 30
6:00 p.m. showtime
Did you know there are fourteen original Oz books, by L. Frank Baum, from the early 1900s and over seventy sequels, written by other authors over the years?  Elements of Baum's "Wonderful Wizard of Oz" story inspires a brand-new adventure, with a contemporary twist.  Starting in modern day, in a world that has forgotten about magic, a lonely-strong willed girl finds herself whirled away into an unlikely expedition.  Alongside a peculiar new friend and hilarious, dazzling sidekicks, our young Heroine finds herself facing challenges at every turn, and finally discovering the true meaning of home, just like the original Dorothy.  Combining cirque, cosplay and classic literature, audiences of all ages will fall in love with this clever, beautiful and surprising new chapter in the Oz legacy.

October 3, 4, 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, 25
4:00 p.m. showtime
As Autumn gives way to long shadows and chillier nights, the forest takes on an eerie mood.  Robin Hood and his merry band find themselves being tricked and tormented by a devious, mysterious force that appears out of nowhere and becomes the greatest foe Robin has ever encountered.  But what is the secret behind this elusive new character?  Why do they taunt the merry men and will Robin Hood finally meet his match and have to give up his beloved Sherwood Forest forever?  As the mystery unfolds, there will be epic battles, revelations of love and loss and a final surprise that will challenge Robin and Sherwood Forest forever.  A swash-buckling adventure, this tale will delight all ages, but may be a little scarier and more intense for audience members ten years and under.

*Fall weekends are popular days for visitation. Please allow up to 45 minutes to park and get to where the hike commences (Thornhill Shelter, Parking Lot 21).



Each month the Arboretum will offer a Low Impact Hike.  Low Impact hikes are designed for guests with lower mobility; the hike covers a much shorter distance, and tries to stay near paved paths wherever possible.  This year's dates are July 19, August 16, and October 11.

American Sign Language (ASL)-interpreted performance 
​This years dates are July 25, August 22, and October 17.

If you require additional accommodations, please contact specialevents@mortonarb.org at least two weeks prior to the program date and the Special Events team will do their best to try and accommodate your needs. 

Fees and admission

Ticket informatio coming soon.

Registration information

All Walking Plays are written by Lara Filip.


Special Event: