Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular returns bigger and better than ever at the Minnesota Zoo! Gather your family and friends and come explore our glowing trail with thousands of artistically carved pumpkins. This year’s trail will lead you on a magical journey through a ‘Night at the Library,’ featuring new artists’ creations and plenty of seasonal fun. Secure your tickets today!

Thank you for your support of the Minnesota Zoo and our mission to connect people, animals, and the natural world to save wildlife.

Ticketing and Event Schedule

October 1 – November 5

Join us for this naturally magical event for a limited time only at the Minnesota Zoo. It’s not a trick – tickets are selling fast! Make a reservation today to treat yourself to this magical experience.
All tickets are sold online only and are non-refundable and valid only for the date and time selected.

Tickets range from $18-24 and Members receive $2-off General Admission
A ticket change fee will apply when moving tickets to another available day/time
Late night pricing for extra spooktacular savings!

Personalized Pumpkins

Customize your very own Jack-O-Lantern with a personalized message or image! You can have an artistically and professionally carved pumpkin placed on display and glowing for all to see. Your jack-o-lantern will be on display the night of your visit, and yours to take home when you leave. Reserve your pumpkin today! Cost includes admission for two to Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular. No corporate logos will be accepted.

*Requests must be made at least 10 business days prior to your visit in order to create your pumpkin.

Fun-Sized Features

Can’t get enough of Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular?? Check out these photos, videos and more, and help us choose our next pumpkin masterpiece!

Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular FAQs

Do I need to purchase my ticket in advance?

All tickets must be purchased in advance and online.

When should I arrive? 

Please do not arrive more than 30 minutes prior to your entry time slot. Guests may enjoy activities on the Central Plaza, or grab a snack and beverage before their scheduled time for Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular.

Is there a fee for parking?

There is no additional fee for parking while attending Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular.

I’m a Member, is the cost of Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular included under my membership, or do I receive a Member discount? 

Zoo Members are offered discounted pricing for all General Admission tickets to Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular. Become a Member Today! All tickets must be purchased in advance and online.

Can I exchange or transfer my ticket for an alternate date or time?

A ticket change fee of $8/transaction will apply when moving tickets to another available day/time by calling (952-431-9200) a minimum of 24-hrs in advance. This event is non-refundable and is open rain or shine. In the case of light to moderate rain, the event will remain open. The Minnesota Zoo will close the event if there is a threat of heavy rain and high winds. In such an event, ticketholders will be reimbursed or may reschedule when possible.

What are the COVID protocols?

This is an outdoor event. Masks are optional.

How long does Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular take?

The walk to the entrance to the pumpkin trail takes about 10 minutes on varying terrain (about ¼ mile to the trail) . The Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular trail is an additional quarter mile and takes about 40 – 50 minutes to walk through the pumpkin display. Wait time to enter the show may vary depending on attendance.

Will there be food and drinks available and can I bring my own?

There will be food, snacks and drinks available for purchase but no outside food and drink is allowed at Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular.

Are wheelchair and stroller rentals available at this event?

Wheelchair (both manual and motorized) and stroller rentals are available on a first-come basis at the Guest Service desk. The trail is fully accessible with elevation changes and considerable incline along the path.

Does the Free to Explore program apply to Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular? 

The Free to Explore Program does not apply to Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular. This program is available for daytime Zoo admission only.

Is this event child friendly?

This seasonal event aims to delight and amaze people of all ages. Please note that the entire Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular experience is outdoors and involves considerable walking. Guests should dress appropriately for the weather and wear comfortable footwear. Tickets must be reserved for all, including those under 2.

Am I allowed to take video or photography? 

We do not allow flash photography, tripods, monopods or selfie sticks as a courtesy and safety measure. Otherwise photo and video taking is allowed as long as it does not impede viewing or the flow of traffic on the trail.

Will I be able to see any live animals?

Animal viewing is available in Discovery Bay only until 8 pm. All other animal viewing areas close at 4 pm when general Zoo hours end.

Who carves the pumpkins, and how many are there?

Passion for Pumpkins from Oxford, MA designs the Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular, and carves the over 5,000 illuminated pumpkins you see on the Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular Trail. Founded by John Reckner, Passion for Pumpkins is a professional multi-media company run by the Reckner family and close friends. Passion for Pumpkins produces shows around the country. Interested in becoming a pumpkin artist for Passion for Pumpkins? Contact Travis Reckner at [email protected] to find out more information!

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