Does anything signify the start of summer more than a trip to an outdoor amusement park? Funnel cake in one hand, string of ride tickets in the other, and you’re ready to roll! The Chicagoland area has some great spots for kids to make summer memories. Whether you’re a thrill-seeker looking for the fastest coaster or a sports enthusiast looking to spend the day at the batting cages, there are attractions for every interest. We rounded up some of the best outdoor amusement parks in the area. Just be sure to check the park website before you go for special events, pricing, and hours.
Outdoor Amusement Parks in Chicagoland
Haunted Trails Burbank
7759 Harlem Avenue
Burbank, IL 60459
Hailed as the year round “Halloween experience”, Haunted Trails is a not-so-scary themed park. The outdoor park offers mini-golf, go-karts, jr. karts, batting cages, and a few other small rides. Inside is an arcade arena with over 100 games. Admission and parking are free, but all attractions are pay-as-you-play.
Tip: On Wednesdays, all games are half-priced after 3 p.m., and you’ll find other specials on their website. Check their website for hours and special events.
Haunted Trails Joliet
1423 N. Broadway Street (Route 53)
Joliet, IL 60435
14 acres of family fun. The outdoor park is open daily, with slightly longer hours in the summer months. The Joliet location offers similar attractions to the Burbank location, with the addition of a speedway, tornado ride, second mini-arcade, and laser tag. Admission and parking are free, but all attractions are pay-as-you-play.
Tip: Wednesdays are half-price after 3 p.m. at this location, too; see all specials. Check out the four new escape room experiences, which just opened in early May! Check their website for hours and special events.
In The Game Hollywood Park
5051 Cal Sag Road
Crestwood, IL 60445
This park offers as much fun outside as it does inside! The outdoor attractions include a mini-golf course, a giant slide, thunder drop, a go-kart track. Indoors, there is a two-story arcade, mini-bowling, and bumper cars. Guests 13+ can take a turn at axe throwing.
Admission and parking are free. Attractions are pay-as-you-play. Outdoor attractions hours vary by season.
Odyssey Fun World
19111 Oak Park Avenue
Tinley Park, IL 60477
In addition to an indoor arcade, laser tag, and roller coaster, the Tinley Park location offers outdoor fun including zip lines, bumper boats, bumper cars, batting cages, mini-golf, go-karts, inflatables and more. Outdoor attractions run Memorial Day through Labor Day only.
Check the home page for hours, special events, and pricing information.
901 Leicester Road
Elk Grove Village, IL 60007
This park, which is recommended for ages 1-9, is open June through August. Check the website for hours and special events.
This park is a perfect way to introduce your child to amusement parks with a manageable layout and design and without the typical Disneyland Lines! Pirate’s Cove offers pirate themed paddle boats, carousel, Castle of Camelot playground, a bounce house, a giant slide, 20-foot climbing wall, a pirate ship ride, and the Safari Express train. All attractions are included with admission.
Santa’s Village Azoosment Park
601 Dundee Avenue
East Dundee, IL 60118
The park is open May through October; during warm weather, it also features a waterpark. Check the website for hours, operating schedule, and special events.
This is a huge park which offers more than two dozen rides specifically geared for the under 10 crowd, lots of animals and animal encounters throughout the park, and of course, SANTA! All attractions and shows are included with admission.
Six Flags Great America
1 Great America Parkway
Gurnee, IL 60031
The water park is open Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend. Check the website for daily hours and operating schedule for the amusement park.
Six Flags is the biggest outdoor amusement park in Illinois with 45 rides and 17 roller coasters, and with the water park could easily be a weekend getaway for the family. The park boasts more than a dozen roller coasters, children’s area, parades, shows, and sometimes fireworks. New this year is DC Universe, a themed section where guests can immerse themselves inside a DC comic book-inspired world with three reimagined attractions. Check admission prices, as well as information on annual passes if you plan to go frequently.
Grady’s Family Fun Park
1501 Morrissey Dr.
Bloomington, IL 61701
This amusement park is family owned and operated. The park offers a wide range of attractions for all ages from 10 kiddie rides, five adult rides, 16 bumper boats with water blasters, 16 bumper cars with laser tag, and one of the most popular attractions, NASCAR-themed go-karts.
Tip: Children must be 3 and above to be able to sit on rides.
Sugar Grove Family Fun Center
9S. 825 State Route 47
Sugar Grove, IL 60554
This amusement park in Kane County include two go-kart tracks, mini-golf, bumper boats, water wars, an indoor game room, a lighted golf range, and more. Check the website for attraction pricing.
Which of these is your family’s favorite? Comment below! Planning a day at one of the parks listed? Please tag us in your Facebook and Instagram photos with #mykidlist so we can join in on your family fun! Then, find more ideas for outdoor family fun.