Chicago Suburban Family

Out & About

Holiday Happenings

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  • Lombard Christmas Mart – 11/6. Art and craft fair inside various locations. 9AM-2PM. Downtown Lombard. lombardhistory.org.
  • Annual Holiday Craft Bazaar – 11/6. Beautiful Holiday decorations and specialty gifts. 9AM-4PM. Free Admission.
  • Fall Festival of Lights – 11/6. Fall-themed celebration featuring games, crafts and activities. Eola Community Center. 10–11:30AM. Foxvalleyparkdistrict.org

GO TO DIGITAL EDITION

  • Festival of Lights – 11/6-12/31. The lights go on nightly on the hour, choreographed to music. 5-9PM. The Promenade, Bolingbrook. shoppingpromenade.com.
  • Christkindlmarket – 11/10-12/24. Traditional holiday market offering a unique shopping experience. Daley Plaza. Christkindlmarket.com.
  • Weed Ladies Floral Sales – 11/11-12 and 11/18-19. Featuring holiday-themed floral arrangements and accessories. Naper Settlement, Naperville. napersettlement.org/weedladies.
  • Hot Chocolate Walk – 11/13. Walk through Heritage Park. Photos with “Frozen” princesses and winter crafts. Registration required. 9:30-10:30AM. wheelingparkdistrict.com.
  • A Dicken’s of a Holiday Craft Show – 11/13. Find unique, handcrafted holiday gifts. FREE! 9AM-3PM. Darien Park District Community Center. Darienparks.com.
  • Christmas Around the World – 11/17-1/3. The Museum of Science and Industry continues its beloved annual exhibit. Msichicago.org.
  • Holiday Tree Lighting – 11/19. 6-7PM. Festive Christmas carols, hot chocolate and cookies, while visiting with Santa! Elmhurst. Exploreelmhurst.org.
  • Holiday Concert on the Village Green – 11/19. Holiday jazz music. Pictures with Santa and face painting. 5-7PM.  Burr Ridge. burr-ridge.gov.
  • Winter Lights – 11/19. Festive parade along Downer Place, fireworks, and photos with Santa at Wyckwood House. Visit nearby shops at a Winter Market featuring local artisans. 6-9 PM. Free. Aurora. auroradowntown.org.
  • Shades of Crimson Poinsettia Display & Sale – 11/19. Visitors are invited to the Cantigny Greenhouse to enjoy 15 or more varieties of poinsettias grown on site from cuttings. Plants will be available for sale. 11AM-4:30PM. Cantigny Park. cantigny.org.
  • City of Chicago Christmas Tree – 11/19. Lighting of Chicago’s “official” Christmas tree In-Person at Millennium Park 6PM. Chicago.gov.
  • BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival – 11/19-21. Tree lighting ceremony at 4PM at Centennial Plaza. Disney themed parade with floats, marching bands and performers on Saturday. The Magnificent Mile, Chicago. themagnificentmile.com.
  • Lincoln Park ZooLights – 11/20-1/2. Lincoln Park Zoo is transformed into a twinkling winter wonderland with ice sculptors, festive activities and sweet treats. 4-10PM. Chicago. Lpzoo.org.
  • Illumination: Tree Lights at the Morton Arboretum – 11/20-1/2. View 50 acres of majestic trees glowing with special effects and events along a wooded, one-mile path. Timed entry tickets. Morton Arboretum, Lisle. mortonarb.org.
  • It’s Thanksgiving Downers Grove – 11/20. Enjoy snacks and crafts with some special characters at Lincoln Center, ages 3-9. Register for time slots. 9:15-2:15PM dgparks.org.
  • Thanksgiving Centerpiece Workshop – 11/22. Create a fresh holiday arrangement with expert instruction. 6:30-8PM. Cantigny Park, Wheaton. cantigny.org.
  • Tree Lighting and Gingerbread Festival – 11/26. Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony at the Main Street train station on Friday at 4:30PM. Downers Grove. Events.downers.us
  • Festival of Lights Parade – 11/26. Parade with Santa, lights, music, and pageantry. 7-9PM. Downtown Crystal Lake. downtowncl.org.
  • Light Up the Holidays Festival and Parade – 11/26. Parade, fireworks, tree lighting and activities. 10AM- 7 PM. Downtown Joliet. jolietccp.com
  • Holiday Homecoming – 11/26-27. Lights ceremony, Friday. Music, holiday movies, sleigh rides, lighted parade. Santa’s House Saturdays and Sundays through 12/19. Electric Christmas Parade on Saturday. St. Charles. stcholidayhomecoming.com.
  • Festival of Lights – 11/26-12/30. Cosley Zoo is transformed with 20,000 twinkling lights, spectacular displays, a selection of Christmas trees for purchase. 9AM-9PM daily. Wheaton. cosleyzoo.org
  • Little Friends Holiday Parade of Lights – 11/26. Brightly lit floats and musical entertainment. Parade at 7PM. Visit with Santa after parade. Downtown Naperville. downtownnaperville.com.
  • Brookfield Zoo Holiday Magic – 11/26-28, 12/1-5, 12/8-12, 12/15-19, 12/26-31. 3-9PM. One-Million LED Lights and much more! Advance tickets required. Brookfield. CZS.org/Events.
  • Aurora Festival of Lights – 11/26-12/26. Dazzling light displays drive through show is open for a full month. Sun-Sat 5-9 PM. Must reserve time slot. Phillips Park, Aurora. aurorafestivaloflights.com.
  • Light Up the Lake – 11/26-1/2. Navy Pier. Indoor experience with light sculpture displays, ice rink, beer garden, kiddie train rides, Santa’s Village, and family friendly events. Navy Pier, Chicago. navypier.org.
  • Kohlights – 11/26 thru 12/31. Mesmertastic Holiday Lightacular returns to the Kohl Children’s Museum. Glenview. kohlights.com.
  • Marmion Christmas Craft Show – 11/27-28. Over 200 crafters and vendors in a 48,000+ sq. ft. shopping center. Sat. 9AM-4PM, Sun. 10AM-2PM. Enjoyaurora.com.
  • Happy Holiday Railway Santa Trains – 11/27-28, 12/4-5, 12/11-12, and 12/18-19. All Aboard for the North Pole. Santa, hot chocolate and cookies on the train.  Illinois Railway Museum. Union, IL irm.org.
  • Holly Days – 11/27. Support the small businesses of Elgin and enjoy the decorated store fronts, food, and special events Purchase your special refillable cup for the Holiday Cheers Beverage Crawl. Downtownelgin.com
  • Fox Valley Nutcracker – 11/27-28. Showcasing professional dancers, the performance features local dancers. Tickets. Batavia Fine Arts Center, Batavia. foxvalleynutcracker.com.
  • Celebration of Lights Festival – 11/28. Activities including hayrides, holiday craft activities, a community sing-a-long, ceremonial tree lighting and visits with Santa. FREE! 5-7PM. Batavia Riverwalk. Bataviaparks.org
  • Mistletoe Medley – 11/30. Fun and Festive Holiday Fundraiser with a luncheon and fashion show. 9AM-3PM. Drury Lane, Oak Brook. oakbrookchapterinfantwelfare.org

DECEMBER

  • Elgin Symphony Holiday Concert 2021 – 12/1-2, 7:30-10:00PM; 12/5, 3:30-5:00PM. Arts Center Blizzard Theater. Apps.elgin.edu.
  • Cup of Cheer – 12/2-3. Naperville Garden Club’s House Walk, Holiday Market & Tea. Tour 4 homes decorated for the Holidays and receive a commemorative teacup and saucer. 9AM-4PM napervillegardenclub.org.
  • One of a Kind Holiday Show – 12/2-5 Hundreds of talented artists, makers and designers will set up shop at The Mart. Chicago. oneofakindshowchicago.com.
  • Hanover Park Tree Lighting Ceremony – 12/3. Santa, hot chocolate bar, live reindeer, horse and carriage rides on a lighted luminary path, arts/crafts, choirs and an indoor snowball fight. 7– 8:30PM. Location TBA. hanoverparkillinois.org.
  • Winter Wonderland Yule Ball – 12/3. DJ, trackless train, Santa and Rudolph and friends, dancing, photos, games and treats! 6:30-8:30PM Tinley Park. tinleyparkdistrict.org
  • Holiday Walk & Festival of Windows – 12/3. Live window displays, horse-drawn carriage rides, ice sculptures, face painting and shopping. 6-9PM. Madison Street in Downtown Forest Park. exploreforestpark.com.
  • Annual Hinsdale Christmas Walk – 12/3. Tree lighting, treats, ice carvers, Santa, carousel, trackless train and sign-a-longs. 5-8PM. Hinsdale. hinsdalechamber.com.
  • Christmas Walk – 12/3. Festivities include the arrival of Santa, the lighting of the tree, carolers. 6-9:30 PM. Downtown Geneva. genevachamber.com.
  • Wintersong 2021 – 12/3. 7:30PM and 12/4 3PM. Enjoy the performance of The Glen Ellyn-Wheaton Chorale and accompanying chamber orchestra as they celebrate the season with music and song. College Church. Wheaton. gewchorale.org
  • Snow Much Fun – 12/3. Take selfies in the giant snow globe and Santa’s sleigh. Demonstrations by Green Valley Dog Sled Drivers and their rescue huskies. Refreshments, S’mores and a food truck at this fun outdoor event. Veteran’s Memorial Park., Westmont Hollydaysfestival.com.
  • Holiday Market and Parade – 12/3, 5:30-9PM; 12/4-5, Times TBD. Tree lighting, Toyland Parade, Parade of Lights, children’s crafts, market. Tinley Park. 708-444-5045. tinleypark.org.
  • Holiday House Tour – 12/3-4. Five decorated local homes for self-guided tours. 10AM-8PM. Genevachamber.com.
  • North Pole Holiday Spectacular – 12/3, 6-7:30PM; 12/4, 1-2:30PM and 3:30-5PM. Family event with a Holiday themed musical show, games, cookie decorating and Santa. Community Rec Center, Schaumburg. Parkfun.com
  • Holiday Lights Festival – 12/3-1/2. Drive through lights display. all month. Festival dates 12/3-4 and 12/10-11., Romeoville Village Hall and Police Station.  Romeoville.org.
  • Festival of Lights – 12/3-1/1. Sparkling display in Old Town Park and Old Town Bloomingdale, with carriage rides, crafts, refreshments, photos with Santa and story-time. Bloomingdale. Bloomingdaleparks.org.
  • Holiday Express at Blackberry Farm – 12/3 and weekends in December. Take a magical ride on the Holiday Express train! Blackberry Farm, Aurora. foxvalleyparkdistrict.org.
  • JingleBell Jubilee – 12/4. Come see beautiful holiday lights, meet Santa and Mrs. Claus, hear stories, listen to carolers, drink hot cocoa, and much more! Tree lighting at 5:30PM. Lombard. lombardparks.com
  • The St. Nick’s Mart – 12/4.  Shop the wares of local crafters, independent consultants and small Villa Park businesses. 5-8PM. Villa Park Public Library, Villa Park. vppl.info
  • LaGrange Hometown Holiday – 12/4. Kick off a month of Holiday magic with a magnificent tree lighting and Santa’s arrival. Details to come, check website for more. Downtown LaGrange. 3-8 PM. lgba.chambermaster.com.
  • Celebrate the Season Holiday Festival – 12/4. Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus, stories, photos, crafts and the whole park will be decorated for the holidays. 1-7PM. Cantigny Park, Wheaton. cantigny.org.
  • Once Upon a Christmas – 12/4-5. Old fashioned Holiday fun for the entire family! Sat. 3-8PM; Sun. 11AM-4PM. The Museums at Lisle Station Park. Lisle, lisleparkdistrict.org.
  • Holiday Lights at Lilacia Park – 12/4-1/2. Light shows, tree decorations, a gingerbread house and more. 4:30-10PM. Lombard. lombardparks.com
  • Frosty Fest – 12/4. Frosty 5K begins at 8:30AM followed by the Frosty Fest. West Chicago. Westchicago.org.
  • Santa Visits at Gretna Station – 12/4. Families can have private meetings with Santa at his cottage at Gretna Station! Carol Stream. 9AM-5PM. Register by 11/22. csparks.org.
  • Holiday Flower Show – Annual Holiday Flower Show, featuring poinsettias and other seasonal varieties. Open 8AM-6PM. Show runs through 1/9. Elmhurst. Epd.org
  • Santa’s Workshop – 12/4. A holiday store just for kids at Wilder Mansion. Open to the public from 1-4PM. Elmhurst. Epd.org.
  • Farmside Christmas – 12/4-5. Ice sculptors, reindeer, holiday crafts and treats around the bonfire. Tree lighting at 5pm and a picture with Santa. 3-7PM.  Register. Ages 3-17. Bensenville. Bvilleparks.org.
  • Holly Days Opening Ceremony – 12/4. Month-long festival in Downtown Westmont starts with the Frosty & Friends Parade, visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus, downtown business open houses, treats and more. Westmont. hollydaysfestival.com.
  • Holiday Hoopla – 12/5. Kids’ games, crafts and photos with Santa at the Wheeling Park District. 1-3PM. Wheelingparkdistrict.com.
  • Bolingbrook Chorus Winter Concert – 12/5.  Free. All welcome to enjoy songs about winter and the Holidays, Bolingbrook. Bolingbrookchorus.org.
  • Cocoa Crawl – 12/6.  Celebrate the winter season with toasty hot cocoa as several participating venues fill up your custom mug.  5-9PM. Various Venues in Downtown Aurora. auroradowntown.org.
  • Holiday Bedtime Stories – 12/7 and 12/9. Bring PJs, a stuffed toy and blanket for a night of Christmas songs, stories and cookies and milk with Mrs. Claus with a visit from Santa. 5:30-6:45PM and 7:15-8:30 PM. Barrington. barringtonparkdistrict.org.
  • Oswego Holiday Express – 12/9-12. The Holiday Express will leave for the North Pole from South Point Center. 4:30-7:30PM. Oswego. Enjoyaurora.com
  • Christmas Trolley Tour of Lights – 12/10-12; 12/1-19. Illuminated tour of the area to visit light displays on the fully enclosed, heated trolley. 6-8PM. Starved Rock Lodge and Conference Center. starvedrocklodge.com.
  • Forever Young Christmas Luncheon – 12/10. Enjoy a pre-packaged lunch from Rocco Vino’s and White Elephant gift exchange (gifts provided by park district). 11:30AM. Fountain View Recreation Center. Register by 12/1. Carol Stream.  Csparks.org.
  • Holiday Concert – 12/10-12. Bring the entire family and create joyful holiday memories together at this holiday sing-a-long. Times vary, see website for details. Proof of COVID vaccination needed. Hemmens Cultural Center, Elgin. elginsymphony.org.
  • Breakfast with Santa – 12/11. Plated breakfast, holiday crafts, music and fun! 9:30-11:30AM. Pre-register. Villa Olivia. bartlettparkdistrict.com
  • Santa’s Workshop – 12/11. Santa’s workshop at the Springbrook Nature Center, complete with cookies, hot chocolate and Holiday crafts. 11AM-1:30PM. Itasca. itascaparkdistrict.com.
  • Merry and Bright: A Victorian Christmas – 12/11. Victorian Christmas traditions, tour of the house and a luminary walk with Victorian-era carolers. Visit with Santa and warm up by the camp fire. Register. 3-7PM. Downers Grove Museum. Dgparks.org.
  • Brunch with Buddy the Elf – 12/11. Join Buddy the Elf for a festive brunch and fun filled activities. 10:30AM-12:30PM. Deerfield. Register deerfieldparks.org.
  • Holly Jolly Trolley – 12/11. Take a ride around Westmont with stops to decorate your own cookies, hot chocolate and listen to Holiday stories. Create a Christmas ornament for your own tree! Westmont Community Center. Hollydaysfestival.com.
  • Candy Cane Hunt – 12/11. Bags will be provided for the goodies you find. A visitor from North Pole, too. 10AM.  Ages 2 and under. 10:15-11AM – ages 3-5 and 6-10, Community Park Bandshell, Lisle. Register. lisleparkdistrict.org.
  • Last Chance Craft Fair – 12/11-12. Art and Craft Fair with over 175 booths. College of DuPage Athletic Arena, Glen Ellyn. craftproductionsinc.com.
  • Breakfast with Mrs. Claus – 12/12. Holiday music, crafts, stories and a holiday treat for each child. Register by 12/6. 10AM-12PM. Itasca. Itascaparkdistrict.com.
  • Yuletide Cheer Family Concert – 12/12. Favorite holiday carols and popular songs by a full symphony orchestra. All ages. 2:00 and 4:00 PM. Wentz Concert Hall, Naperville. dupagesymphony.org.
  • Pizza with Santa – 12/17. Pizza, soda, craft, games, bounce house. Children of all ages with an adult. Register by 12/10. 6-7PM. Darien. Darienparks.com.
  • Grinchmas – 12/18. Take a walk through outdoor Whoville and get a picture with Santa and the Grinch. Coyote Crossing Mini Golf. Register by 12/16. 5-7PM.Carol Stream.  Csparks.com.
  • Iceland Santa Skate – 12/19. Enjoy a family skate with Santa and his elves to holiday music. 2:30–4PM. Iceland, Niles. niles-parks.org.
  • Parkie’s Reindeer Games – 12/18. Swimming in a pool with melted snowmen and pics with Parkie. Arts, crafts and games. Pelican Harbor Indoor Aquatic Park. 9-11:30AM. Bolingbrook. Bolingbrookparks.org.
  • Flashlight Candy Cane Hunt – 12/20. Ages 1-14 years. Search for a dozen candy canes, some with a special note to exchange for a prize. 6-6:30PM. Itasca. Itascaparkdistrict.com
  • Teenie Weenie New Year’s Eve Ball – 12/30. Dance to the music with a DJ, bounce house, games, crafts, snacks and a balloon drop. Ages 1-8 with adult. 10AM-12:30 PM. Register by 12/22. Simkus Recreation Center, Carol Stream. csparks.org.
  • Middle School NYE Mingle – 12/30. DJ Dance Glow Party, games, crafts, snacks at the new tween concession stand and a balloon drop at 11PM. Grades 6-8. 8-10PM. Register by 12/22. Simkus Recreation Center, Carol Stream. csparks.org.
  • Noon Year’s Eve Ball – 12/31. Noon Year’s Eve toast, DJ and dancing, snacks a craft and a family photo. 10:30AM-12:30PM. Barringtonparkdistrict.org
  • Happy Noon Year – 12/31. Kids will enjoy games, music, balloon drop and sparkling grape-juice toast. 11AM-12:15PM. Community Rec Center. Wheeling. wheelingparkdistrict.com.

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