Five Events To Get You In The Holiday Spirit

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November 17, 2017

Why wait until December to ’Tis the Season, when you can embrace the holiday spirit right now?! Grab your hats and gloves, and prepare for a delightful adventure in the Windy City with these cheery events.


BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival

[Image Credit: Magnificent Mile Lights Festival]

Nov. 17-18, 2017

Michigan Avenue

Kick off the holiday season in style with one of Chicago’s signature parades. Before finding the perfect watch spot, take part in themed activities at Pioneer Court! Be on the lookout for Grand Marshals Mickey and Minnie Mouse, and enjoy fireworks over the Chicago River. For a full list of events, view the schedule.


Ice Skating

[Image Credit: City of Chicago]

Nov. 17, 2017 – March 4, 2018

Millennium Park/Maggie Daley Park

One of the perks of the cold weather is that it’s finally ice skating season! With two rinks so close, you can mix it up. For the classic experience, skate underneath The Bean at Millennium Park, and for something a little different – lace up and take on the skating ribbon at Maggie Daley Park. Admission to both rinks is FREE and skates are available to rent for a small fee.



[Image Credit: Christkindlmarket]

Nov. 17 – Dec. 24, 2017

Daley Plaza

Inspired by the original Christkindlesmarkt in Nuremberg, Germany, this open-air holiday festival is the ultimate stop this season in Chicago. Featuring a wide variety of gifts, specialty items and food, this fest can be a one-stop shop for everyone on your list. Admission is FREE! See the vendors and get more info HERE.

Pro Tip: Before you begin browsing, grab a hot pretzel and a drink in the signature boot mug.



[Image Credit: Lincoln Park Zoo]

Begins Nov. 24, 2017

Lincoln Park Zoo

The holiday season always brings the most amazing lights displays! Chicago has dozens around the city, but one of the most spectacular is at the Lincoln Park Zoo – complete with over 100 displays, live ice sculpting, and so much more! Walk through the zoo to see your favorite animals and be amazed at the millions of lights and holiday themed stops along the way.  Admission is FREE! Plan your trip and see everything else the zoo offers HERE.


Chicago Trolley Holiday Lights Tour

Begins Nov. 24, 2017

Pickup at John Hancock Center

This tour is perfect for those that want the complete holiday experience in one ticket! This 2 ½ hour tour starts at the John Hancock Center tree display, and passes through all the city’s most popular destinations. Whiz through the beautiful lights on State Street, and stop at the Christkindlmarket and the Lincoln Park Zoo Lights. The ticket even comes with a FREE Sprinkles holiday cupcake! Due to the popularity of this tour, be sure to get your tickets in advance.