Angeli Mittal/Daily Senior Staffer
While the sun starts to set earlier and the weather chills day by day, Chicago’s festive spirit emerges. Before settling down to study for finals, head to the city to find an abundance of holiday classics and hidden gems. Here are The Daily’s top picks:
Enjoy warm hot chocolate and an array of delectable delights at the Christkindlmarket, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this winter. Open at 50 W Washington St. from Nov. 19 through Dec. 24, admission to the market is free. You can also purchase its famous mugs and other products from the online marketplace.
A bit closer to Northwestern’s Evanston Campus, the market’s Wrigleyville location will run from Nov. 19 through Dec. 31 and offers a similarly lively ambience.
Lincoln Park ZooLights
Take a stroll through illuminated tunnels and past towering candy canes at the Lincoln Park Zoo. Open on select dates between Nov. 19 and Jan. 2, admission is $5 per person Wednesdays through Sundays, and free on Mondays and Tuesdays. ZooLights will have a limited capacity once again this year, so the website advises prospective light viewers to grab their tickets as soon as possible.
Jack Frost Winter Walk & Christmas Tree Farm
Located at 1265 W Le Moyne St. in the Near North Side, the Jack Frost Winter Walk & Christmas Tree Farm offers activities ranging from ice skating to axe throwing and bumper cars. The venue’s decorations, like sleighs and Christmas trees set the stage for the perfect Instagram post. Plus, pick out a Christmas tree from the tree farm and explore a variety of food options like themed doughnuts and special seasonal drinks. Ticket prices vary based on date, and the pop-up will be open from Dec. 2 to Jan. 2, 2022.
Amaze Light Festival at Impact Field
With seven different themed worlds of light displays and a light show every half hour, the Amaze Light Festival at Impact Field right outside of Chicago in the Village of Rosemont is an event you won’t want to miss. The light festival, complete with a candy shop and festive food and drinks, opened Nov. 19 and will continue through Jan. 2, 2022. Tickets are $23 for adults and $18 for children ages 2 through 12.
City of Chicago Christmas Tree
The 108th annual City of Chicago Christmas Tree lighting happened Nov. 19. The 51-foot Blue Spruce tree is located in Millennium Park near the intersection of Michigan Avenue and Washington Street in Downtown Chicago and will stay lit from 6 a.m. to 11p.m. until Jan. 9, 2022.
103.5 Kiss FM Jingle Ball
Just outside of the Chicago area, 103.5 Kiss FM will host its annual Jingle Ball at the Allstate Arena. Live music makes its return with a lineup including headliners like Doja Cat, Lil Nas X and Saweetie. The holiday-themed show will grace the city on Dec. 7. Guests planning to attend must show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours of the show. Masks are required in the arena and ticket prices vary by seat.
Ice Skating at Maggie Daley Park
Surrounded by skyscrapers and immaculate Chicago architecture, the Maggie Daley Park Ice Skating Ribbon welcomes skaters of any level. The ribbon opened for the season on Nov. 19, and ticket pricing varies throughout the season. Reservations can be made online to enjoy the scenery and atmosphere of the Downtown skating rink.
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