Summer is a great time to combine the benefits of learning, exercise, and outdoor family fun on a local storybook walk. The paths typically feature a deconstructed children’s book, which you read together, page by page, as you walk. Maps will be available at the starting point and participants can read and stroll at their own pace. At these local parks, families will find Pete the Cat and other family-favorite books to enjoy together as they stretch their legs and practice their reading skills. Many towns have permanent Storybook Walk displays, while others offer occasional events in their communities.
Storybook Walks in Chicago’s Suburbs
163 Fairfield Way
Bloomingdale, IL 60108
Set up along the walking path at Circle Park, the Storybook Trail features a new story each season.
95th Street Library
3015 Cedar Glade Dr.
Naperville, IL 60564
Enjoy an indoor StoryWalk this Spring. After completing the story, visit the children’s services desk for a special take-home activity. The book title will change each month. Check current book titles on their website.
Prairie Path Park
Along Prairie Path between Forest Avenue and Park Boulevard
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137
The all-weather StoryWalk signs lead through the garden by the gazebo and feature new stories periodically.
16421 Christopher Drive
Lemont, IL 60439
In July 2020, The Lemont Park District and Lemont Public Library renovated a StoryBook Walk around Mayfair Park, which was installed in 2018. Check the Library’s Facebook page for up-to-date information on the which story is on display.
Oak Lawn Public Library StoryWalk
Lake Shore Park
9610 E Shore Drive
Oak Lawn, IL 60453
In addition to the permanent StoryWalk, which is updated year-round, Oak Lawn Public Library will occasionally run special StoryWalk events, too. Check the website for upcoming events, or stop by to check out a copy of the book.
1037 N Smith Street
Palatine, IL 60067
The Palatine Public Library hosts their permanent StoryWalk display at Hamilton Reservoir. On select days, they will run additional outdoor storytimes here, but guests are welcome to read the posted story at anytime.
24401 Lockport Street
Plainfield, IL 60544
The Plainfield StoryWalk switches out its stories every few months, so if you’ve gone recently, stop by again! One important note about its location: the address above is for the main parking lot of Settlers’ Park. While it’s not a terribly long walk, if you’re looking to be as close as possible to the StoryWalk, you’re better off parking further south along S. Van Dyke Road. They also installed a new playground at Settlers’ Park in 2020.
Prospect Heights StoryWalk
110 W Camp McDonald Road
Prospect Heights, IL 60070
Prospect Heights StoryWalk can be found at Lions Park, on the path behind the Prospect Heights Park District building.
Clauss Recreation Center Storybook Walk
555 W Bryn Mawr Avenue
Roselle, IL 60172
Start at the north end of the path, across from Lake Park High School West Campus. The 20 frames are numbered to make finding the start easier.
Hickory Knolls Natural Area
3795 Campton Hills Drive
St. Charles, IL 60175
The Hickory Knolls Natural Area has a permanent display for “Hickory Knolls: A History of Our Home”, the story of two animals and their adventures through Hickory Knolls. Families can find more details about the story on their website. The story begins across the road from the Hickory Hideout natural play area, with the story spanning approximately 3/4 of a mile.
Storybook Walk Events
Downtown Wheaton StoryWalk
Wheaton Public Library
225 N. Cross Street
Wheaton, IL 60187
Downtown Wheaton’s StoryWalk runs through July 31, 2022. See the website for information and the map; you can also pick up a printed map at Youth Services if the library is open. The story begins at the library in the front windows.
Children’s Story Trail and Craft
Trailside Museum of Natural History
738 Thatcher Avenue
River Forest, IL 60305
Trailside Museum of Natural History runs storywalk events often. Each session is on display for approximately one week. Guests are also encouraged to stop in the museum during business hours and take an activity kit to-go. Check their website for more upcoming titles.
Read the Storybook Trail and Craft
Pilcher Park Nature Center
2501 Highland Park Drive
Joliet, IL 60432
StoryWalk at the Riverwalk Grand Pavilion
912 Honorary Sindt Memorial Court
Naperville, IL 60540
Naperville Public Library occasionally hosts StoryWalk events at the Riverwalk Grand Pavilion. The next event will be running on August 20, 2022 from 9:00am – 12:00pm. Check their website for more upcoming events.
Did we miss your favorite Story Trail? Email firstname.lastname@example.org so we can include it in our list!
Looking for more fun outside? Check out the Kidlist outdoor guide for other great ways to spend time outdoors!