Chicago is bursting with things to do, see, and taste year round, but during the holidays, the city becomes downright magical. The lights, the snow, the cheer—we love it all. December begins this weekend, but many holiday happenings have already gotten started. If next month goes by as quickly as the last few have, the new year will be here before we know it. Don’t miss your chance to experience the season here in the Windy City. Here’s our round-up of holiday events to check out in Chicago this weekend.
Is it even Christmas in Chicago if you don’t visit Christkindlmarket? The answer is no. Take in the sights, sounds, and sips offered at this year’s market, and don’t forget to treat yourself to some glühwein (red or white) in this year’s souvenir mug. The brats and potato pancakes are calling your name.
Lincoln Park Zoo is transformed into a winter wonderland every holiday season. Head there this weekend to immerse yourself in twinkling lights while snacking on holiday goodies and sipping on warm spiced wine. This year, they’ll be featuring a few new ticketed events, including a live show of A Charlie Brown Christmas on December 9.
This isn’t technically a holiday-themed event, but eating is one of the best parts about the holidays, so it counts for us (and we all know calories don’t count December through January). In celebration of their 5th anniversary, Eataly will be offering up $5 specials, including $5 wine and $5 market deals. Treat yourself and start the holiday season off the right way–with a wine glass in one hand, and a fork in the other.
Make some new holiday memories and spend your day or night ice skating at the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink in Millennium Park, a Chicagoan tradition. If you have your own skates, you’ll skate free. If not, you can rate skates for $10. Try and go earlier in the day to avoid the big crowds.
The Nutcracker at Auditorium Theatre
The holiday season isn’t complete without at least one show, and few come close to the whimsical tale of The Nutcracker Ballet. Presented by the Joffrey Ballet, this production features new choreography by Christopher Wheeldon and takes place right here in Chicago during the 1893 World Columbian Exposition.