It’s the most wonderful time of the year! This week, Chicago’s spectacular holiday celebrations, both downtown and in myriad communities, signal the start of a joyous season for all to enjoy.
The City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs presents their first in-person Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony since 2019 at Millennium Park, 201 E. Randolph Street, on Friday, November 19 starting at 6pm (with the actual lighting at approximately 6:30pm). Free.
One of the prettiest sights on Lake Shore Drive every season are the millions of LED lights and fanciful decorations of Lincoln Park Zoo’s annual Zoolights Festival, 2400 N. Cannon Drive. The Festival starts this Friday, November 19, from 4–10 p.m. Free admission on Mondays and Tuesdays, $5 admission all other days of the week. Zoolights Festival also has sensory-friendly nights and other special nights planned this season. Check website for details.
If State Street is “that great street,” Michigan Avenue will always be the Magnificent Mile! More than a million lights on 200 trees will twinkle in unison as the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival returns on Saturday, November 20, Michigan Avenue between Wacker Drive and Oak Street turns into a winter wonderland of fun! Family-friendly activities begin at 11am. The fun-filled day end in grand fashion with a whimsical holiday parade, starting at 5:30pm. The parade featuring fabulous floats, giant helium balloons, marching bands, celebrities, musical performances, Santa Claus, and more! Guests attending the Lights Festival events are asked to wear a mask, regardless of vaccination status.
One of the first outdoor markets of its kind, Christkindlmarket, with locations in downtown Chicago at Daley Civic Center 50 W. Washington, and Wrigleyville on Gallagher Way, provides high quality gifts and food, holiday cheer, and for being the ideal place for families to make unique memories. Christkindlmarket is open November 19 – December 24. Hours are Sundays – Thursdays: 11am – 8pm, and Fridays – Saturdays: 11am – 10pm. Free admission.
Channel your inner ecologist and join in with the Lincoln Park Conservancy for their Drop-In Park Cleanup on Saturday, November 20, from 10am – noon at the Lincoln Park Conservatory, 2391 North Stockton Drive. Meet at the front of the Conservatory to collect a trash-grabber, bucket or bag, and a pair of gloves. Return the tools to the same spot when you’re done, or by 12pm. Space is limited. For more information, check the website.
“Don’t miss a Beet!” Discover the freshest and best of the Midwest at Green City Market’s Lincoln Park Farmers’ Market, 1817 N. Clark Street, on Saturday, November 20, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. This is the last Green City Market of 2021. Choose from dozens of local, sustainable farmers and food producers displaying fresh-to-table meats, eggs, and fish, along with fresh produce such as apples, arugula, cabbage, carrots, collard greens, eggplant, fennel, gourds, herbs, kale, kohlrabi, lettuce, microgreens, mushrooms, pears, peppers, potatoes, pumpkins, radishes, sorrel, spinach, spring mix, spring onions, sunchokes, squash, turnips, and watercress! Green City Market welcomes and matches the value of Link benefits dollar-for-dollar up to $15 per customer per market day.