CHICAGO NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS: Lakeview, Lincoln Park, Bucktown and Wicker Park, Lincoln Square, Chicago Loop, Portage Park

Lakeview: Mercury Theatre presents the story of The Christmas Schooner. This heartwarming story is about the first Christmas tree ship and the family who risked their lives to bring Christmas to Chicago. The production also features a beautiful score, blended with original music and traditional favorites. This wonderful show is a Chicago tradition, not to be missed! The show runs until December 31. Showtimes are Wednesdays at 8 pm, Thursdays at 3 and 8 pm, Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 3 and 8 pm, and Sundays at 3 pm. Buy your tickets here now!

Lincoln Park: Get yourself to Second City for The Holidazed and Confused: Mandatory Merriment! This raunchy and hilarious show is a perfect way to spend a pre-Christmas evening. The show features Second City’s signature blend of sketch comedy and improv. The show runs until December 31 and you can find the schedule here. General admission tickets start at $31.

Bucktown and Wicker Park: Looking for some edgy musical theatre? Look no further, The Den Theatre has got you covered! Hurry in for the closing weekend of Lizzie, a musical about Lizzie Borden who famously murdered her parents in 1892. This musical reimagines the bloody legend with four women in a female rock band. Thursday, Friday, and Saturdays showings are already sold out, but you can catch the show this Sunday, December 17 at 3 and 8 pm. Buy your tickets now, here!

Lincoln Square: Take a break from the hustle and bustle of the holiday season and treat yourself to a cooking class! The Chopping Block is hosting a Holiday Tea Party cooking class. First, sample tea sandwiches and head over to the DIY tea bar. After you’ve sampled the goods, you’ll work in groups to prepare Puffy Pastry Shells filled with Chocolate Mousse, Mini Victoria Sponge Cakes filled with Buttercream and Jam, and Currant-Ginger Scones. At the end of class, enjoy chef-prepared Mini Quiche Lorraine and Chicken Salad. The class is this Sunday, December 17 from 2 to 4 pm. Register now!

Chicago Loop: Come one, come all to Merry, Merry Chicago! Members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Chicago Children’s Choir will perform a holiday concert filled with classic carols, a sing-along, and a visit from Santa! You have five chances to see this special holiday event: December 15 at 7 pm, December 16 at 3 pm, December 17 at 1 pm, December 22 at 7 pm, and December 23 at 3 pm. Find more information and get your tickets here!

Portage Park: Get your holiday on at Anne’s Haven Holiday Festival! The festival is this Sunday, December 17, from 2 to 5 pm at 5629 W. Irving Park. This family-friendly event will include balloon and bean bag games for kids, caroling around the outdoor fire pit, and marshmallow roasting. Don’t forget to grab a cup of hot cocoa or mulled wine and a few holiday snacks! You can decorate Christmas cookies, listen to story telling by candlelight, and participate in laughter yoga for all ages. There will be raffles and prizes for the kids games and even a surprise visit from Santa! Anne’s Haven will be collecting outerwear for a local shelter, so bring donations of hats, scarves, gloves, and coats. Tickets are by suggested donation: $5 for adults, $2.50 for children, free for ages 2 and under.