Opening Weekend - Sept. 22–24:
Kick off the festival with a ceremony, giveaways, and tours.
Asian Cuisine/Chicago Weekend - Sept. 29–Oct 1:
Cooking demonstrations and food specials as well as a free collector fan to the first 3,000 visitors presenting an Illinois driver’s license.
Moon Festival Weekend - Oct.
Presented by the Milwaukee Chinese Community Center and OCA–Wisconsin
Featuring demonstrations of Chinese folk arts and performances.
Cultural Weekend - Oct. 13–15:
A focus on Chinese cultural arts with demonstrations, lectures, and videos.
Closing Weekend - Oct 20–22:
Featuring giveaways and a closing ceremony.
Each night at about 6:15 p.m., watch the parade as members of the entertainment staff lead a procession through the audience in the Shrub Mall of the Botanical Gardens. The Illumination Parade will conclude at the main stage in time for the first performance of the night.
In the colorful marketplace, visitors will find an abundance of souvenir items as well as the opportunity to watch Chinese artisans create traditional handicrafts. Clothing, toys, jewelry, and artwork will be for sale. Some of the crafts being demonstrated include name painting, rice engraving, inner-bottle painting, and aluminum weaving. Also take a taste of the great Asian and American food and beverages for added fun!
Each night of the festival offers amazing stage performances on two stages highlighting Asian culture and art. Entertainment varies nightly. Acts include Spinning Tops, String Instruments, Juggling, Unicycle, Face Changing and Martial Arts Demonstrations from China! Performance times are posted at the Welcome Gate nightly.
The historic Garden House will house the cultural displays. Three display cases will have replicas of historic Asian clothing styles. There is also a video viewing area with various short shows highlighting China’s natural beauty, the making of the Porcelain towers, and other interesting subjects. Replicas of historic Chinese artifacts are also on display for hands-on interaction.
Immerse yourself in the China Lights experience with our self-guided mobile tour app on your own smartphone or tablet. The guide can be purchased at the box office.