Lions, Tigers, & Bears! A Lincoln Park Scavenger Hunt - Atlas Obscura

Chicago, Illinois

Lions, Tigers, & Bears! A Lincoln Park Scavenger Hunt

Our newest "Google-proof" scavenger hunt, located in and around the Lincoln Park Zoo.

When the Lincoln Park Zoo was founded in 1868, the finer nuances of zoo construction were still being figured out by animal keepers and architects alike. In fact, by 1879 the zoo's bear cubs had become quite adept at climbing the rocky walls of their enclosure and escaping to roam the premises at night... and they weren't the only zoo residents to do so!

Join us the afternoon of April 6th to uncover the history of the park's wayward bears, escaped elephants, and scheming sea lions. It's been a long time since any cunning creatures have weaseled their way out, but you'll enjoy retracing the steps of these daring getaways anyway, and you never know what you might discover along the way.

Whether you tackle the clues solo or enlist the help of friends, this epic hunt promises to send you scavenging through every corner of Lincoln Park's namesake zoo, sprawling public park, and peaceful nature sanctuaries. 

Remember to charge your cell phones; though you won't find the answers with a simple Google search, you'll likely need some internet assistance in deciphering the clues. The final stop will land you in a top-secret location, where you can expect to join Field Agent Patti Swanson (and your competitors) for a drink. Our winner receives a special prize—and losers, we’ll still buy your first drink.


  • Early bird tickets (purchased before March 23) are $30 per player, or $58 for a duo ticket.
  • Regular tickets (after March 23) are $35 per player, $68 for a duo ticket.
  • Ticket includes hunt and one drink ticket per participant for participants 21+.


  • Shrewd scavengers should meet Field Agent Patti Swanson outside of the Webster Drive entrance to the Zoo to receive their instructions (2192 N Stockton Dr). 
  • The hunt can be done either solo or in groups of 2-3.
  • This event goes on rain, shine, or snow! Several stops along the hunt are indoors.
  • Be ready to walk about 2 miles.
  • Wear shoes fit for an adventure and a weather-appropriate outfit to match.
  • Limited ADA access. Email for details. 
  • The ticket is non-refundable, but you can transfer your purchase by following this handy Eventbrite tutorial.


Email Patti Swanson at

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Advance ticket sales only. All ticket sales are final. No refunds or exchanges.