Tours of the Oak Park Conservatory, a historic landmark owned and operated by the Park District of Oak Park and built in 1929, are offered to adults and school children. Tours of the Conservatory are led by trained docents who are Friends of the Oak Park Conservatory volunteers. The tours last from 45 minutes to an hour.
Our tours feature 4 distinct ecosystems at the Conservatory. You will visit the Mediterranean, Tropical and Desert rooms. And weather permitting, the tour goes outdoors to visit our Illinois ecosystem in the Elsie Jacobsen Discovery Garden.
Visitors learn about unusual flowering and fruiting plants such as the chocolate tree, the prickly pear cactus and the Ponderosa lemon. The Conservatory plants illustrate how the life cycle of flowering plants includes fruits, seeds and seedlings. Live animals, including George the parrot, koi, turtles and a resident frog, enliven the pond and waterfall in the Tropical Room.
Tours are free for school groups from District 97 and $2 per student for all others. Tours must be scheduled several weeks in advance and are subject to docent availability.
SETUP SCHOOL TOURS NOW
Docent led school tours of the Conservatory, about an hour in length, are offered Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays September – May. To schedule a tour, fill out the School Tour Form – click button below.
FOPCON offers an Exploration Kit to teachers in the Oak Park Elementary School District, D97. Our Kit contains a presentation board, activities, books and learning tools to highlight plants that can be found at the Oak Park Conservatory. The Kit encourages hands-on learning and is sure to be a hit! We designed the Kit to complement what students are learning about plants in the classroom.
Exploration Kit: Plant Super-Powers Developed for 1st grade. Kids learn about leaves of plants that have structural ‘Super-Powers’ which enable them to thrive in their habitats.
Just call the FOPCON Volunteer Coordinator for more information and to request a Kit. The phone number is 708-725-2460.
A Kit is lent out for 1 week. We will deliver and pick them up at your school.
Please give it a try!
Below photos are from a prior Exploration Kit called Traveling Seeds. Kids are learning and having fun.