The holidays are a festive time in Chicago, where there are several family-friendly events that you can enjoy with friends and loved ones in 2017. Bundle up to go outdoors and have fun at a skating rink, at a holiday market, or to go Christmas caroling.
Fifth Third Bank Winter Wonderfest
Dec. 1-Jan. 7
Navy Pier, 600 E. Grand Ave., Chicago, IL 60611
Winter Wonderfest is a celebrated holiday event with fun for kids and adults in Chicago. Take the family to Winter Wonderfest for indoor fun, including 170,000 sq. ft. of rides, giant slides, the Chicago Blackhawks Ice Skating Rink, festive decorations. All tickets include a ride on the Centennial Wheel. Ticket prices vary so check the website for information and save 30% by purchasing tickets online.
Holidays at Macy’s on State Street
Nov. 5-Jan. 8
Macy’s, 111 N. State Street, Chicago, IL 60602
Macy’s is a holiday destination that has become a tradition for many people in the Chicago area. Visit the store to see the iconic holiday windows. The window theme for 2017 is “Reasons to Believe,” focusing on family traditions, Santa, togetherness, love, giving, and the magic of the Christmas season. Take the children to Macy’s Santaland, known as Cozy Cloud Cottage, for a visit with Santa and a holiday photo. Dine at the famous Walnut Room and gaze at the Great Tree for a magical experience.
22nd Annual Christkindlmarket
Nov. 17-Dec. 24 @ 11 a.m.
Daley Plaza, Washington, and Dearborn St., Chicago, IL 60602
The German Christmas Market, or Christkindlmarket, has been bringing a touch of European charm to the City of Chicago since 1995. The Christkindlmarket in Chicago takes its inspiration from the Nuremberg, market in Germany. Take the family to experience an Old-World style outdoor market and try some of the German foods and hot spiced Gluhwein. Admission to the Christkindlmarket is free.
Chriskindlmarket Park at Wrigley
Nov. 24-Dec. 24 & Dec. 26-31 @ 11 a.m.
Wrigley Field, 1060 W. Addison St., Chicago, IL 60613
The German Christmas Market has expanded to Wrigley Field this year, so the popular German markets will be in Downtown Chicago, Wrigley, and Naperville. Choose the location most convenient for you and have fun shopping.
The ice skating rink at Wrigley Field is at the heart of Winterland at the Park. Spend quality time ice skating with family and friends at historic Wrigley Field. During the holidays you can also take pictures at Santa’s Workshop and spend some time at Christkindlmarket at the Park. Admission to the skating rink is $5 for people 13 and older, and is free for children 12 and younger. The skate rental fee is $10.
Santa House at Millennium Park
Nov. 24-Dec 24 (Fri., Sat., & Sun.) @ 11 a.m.
Millennium Park, Chicago, IL 60602
Santa Claus will be at Santa House in Millennium Park on specified hours to visit with children and pose or photos. Bring your camera so you can take your own photos of Santa and the children.
McCormick Tribune Ice Rink at Millennium Park
Nov. 17 – March 4 @ Various times
201 E. Randolph St., Chicago, IL 60601
The entire family will enjoy ice skating at the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink in Millennium Park. Skating at the ice rink will be free and open to the public. You can bring your own ice skates or rent skates for $12-$14 at the rink.
Maggie Daley Park Skating Ribbon
Nov. 17 -March 4
Maggie Daley Park, 337 E. Randolph St., Chicago, IL 60601
Take the family for exhilarating fun and exercise at Maggie Daley Park in downtown Chicago. Admission to the rink is free. You can bring your own ice skates or rent skates for $12-$14.
Caroling at Cloud Gate
Nov. 24, Dec. 1, 8, & 15 @ 6 p.m.
Millennium Park, 201 E. Randolph St., Chicago, IL 60601
Caroling during the Christmas season is a festive event that can cheer the entire family, so bundle up and lift your voices in songs of the season.
Holiday Flower Show at Lincoln Conservatory
Nov. 24-Jan. 7 (Mon.-Sat.) @ 9 a.m.
2391 N. Stockton Dr., Chicago, IL 60614
Delight in the beauty of Holiday Flower Show at Lincoln Conservatory, festively decorated with Winter Wonderland of poinsettias. Kids and adults will have fun seeing the delightful sparkling lights and model trains chugging through the plantings. Admission is free.
Nov. 24-Dec. 24 @ 11 a.m.
Naper Settlement, 523 S. Webster St., Naperville, IL 60540
Christkindlmarket Naperville is an offshoot of the popular German Christmas Market in the City of Chicago. The entire family will have fun visiting the European market, where vendors sell unique, handmade items, which are perfect for holiday gift giving. While you are there, enjoy some of the tempting German food and holiday entertainment.
Wonderland Express at Chicago Botanic Garden
Dec. 1-Jan. 7 @ 10 a.m.
Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Rd., Glencoe, IL 60022
Kids and adults will be delighted by the Garden for Wonderland Express, a lavish display of model trains traveling through realistic Chicago landmarks crafted in miniature. There will also be holiday movies shown on Dec. 19-20, for even more family-friendly entertainment. Tickets are $8-$13. On Tuesdays, tickets are half-price, due to sponsorship by Grainger.