Holiday happenings


Last updated 11/21/2023 at 3:45pm | View PDF

n ‘A Christmas Carol’

Nov. 24-Dec. 30

Drury Lane Theatre

100 Drury Lane, Oakbrook Terrace

(630) 530-0111

Continue a tradition or start a new one by gathering the whole family for this heartwarming 30th anniversary production of Dickens’ Christmas classic. Complete with falling snow, magical illusions and special effects, the play is a visually-stunning experience, and at one hour long, perfect for children of all ages. On select performance dates, families will have the opportunity to have breakfast or dinner with Santa Claus in Drury Lane’s elegantly decorated dining room. Time: 10 a.m., noon and 7 p.m. performances offered on various dates.

n Holiday Magic

Nov 24-26 & 30 & Dec. 1-31

Brookfield Zoo

3400 31st St.

(630) 688-8400

Bright lights and magical nights await guests at the 42nd annual event. Visitors will enjoy more than 2 million twinkling LED lights, a 41-foot tall tree choreographed to seasonal tunes, photo opportunities in the ever-popular 20-foot-tall orb and 3D 16-foot-tall gingerbread house, a 600-foot-long “Tunnel of Lights” and more. Many of the zoo’s animal buildings will be open as well restaurants and gift shops offering an array of unique items. View more than 600 decorated community and corporate trees along the malls and around Roosevelt Fountain. Advanced registration and tickets are required. Times: 3 to 9 p.m. on weekends and other dates. Admission: $29.95 for adults, $20.95 for ages 3-11, $24.95 for seniors 65 and older plus $15 parking. RR, MD

n Deer in the ’Dale

Nov. 25

Immanuel Hall

302 S. Grant St.

Ring in the holiday season with reindeer fun. Take family photos with live reindeer in a holiday scene and enjoy petting reindeer, reindeer carnival games and prizes, crafts, snacks and treats and an immersive showing of the 1964 version of “Rudolph.” Time: noon to 3 p.m. Cost: $15 plus $10 each for reindeer games punch cards.

n ‘The Nutcracker’

Nov. 26 & 27

Hinsdale Central auditorium

5500 S. Grant St.

Salt Creek Ballet presents its annual production of this holiday favorite, as Clara and the Nutcracker battle the Rat King, dance through the Kingdom of Snow, and beyond to the Kingdom of Sweets. The Sugar Plum Party will take place right after the Sunday matinée, and Santa will drop by Saturday shows for pictures. The Nutcracker Boutique with themed holiday decor and ornaments will also be open. Times: 2 and 7 p.m. Nov. 26, 1 p.m. Nov. 27. Tickets: $42-$50.

n Santa’s Mailbox

Dec. 1-8

(630) 789-7090

Children of Hinsdale residents may write a letter to Santa, drop it in the mailbox at village hall, 19 E. Chicago Ave., and receive a personal letter back in seven to 10 business days. Be sure to include the parent form available on the website listed above under Special Events > Santa’s Mailbox. Questions? Call the number listed above or send an email to [email protected].

n Hinsdale Christmas Walk

Dec. 1

Downtown Hinsdale

(630) 323-3952

The Hinsdale Chamber of the Commerce will sponsor the 57th annual event, which will feature Cookie’s Carousel, the Kiddie Express train, animated holiday characters, strolling carolers, giveaways and more. Santa will arrive at the Memorial Building, 19 E. Chicago Ave., to light the tree at 5 p.m. Time: 5 to 7 p.m.

n Christmas at Cantigny

Dec. 1-23


1S151 Winfield Road, Wheaton

Visitors to this inaugural event are in for a special holiday treat, including McCormick House walk-throughs, ice skating and dazzling light installations. Hundreds of fresh poinsettias from Cantigny’s own greenhouse will be on display throughout the home. Outside, 100-by-40-foot ice rink will add some wintery magic to the scene. Skaters can rent blades or bring their own. Spectators and skaters taking a break can enjoy a warm holiday treat in the heated hospitality tent overlooking the rink. Visitors can also reserve a private “Cocoa Cabana,” perfect for families and friend groups. Enjoy creative lighting displays, pop-up activities and more. Santa brunches are slated for Dec. 2-3 and 16-17 at the Cantigny Golf clubhouse. Hours: 4 to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday, with extended hours on weekends and for ice skating. Admission: $15, $5 for kids 4-15, free for 3 and younger plus $10 parking.

n Breakfast with Santa

Dec. 2

KLM Lodge

5901 S. County Line Road, Hinsdale

(630) 789-7090

Santa is making a last-minute stop in Hinsdale to check who has been naughty and nice. Take pictures with Santa and enjoy an expanded continental breakfast. Time 9 to 10 a.m. Cost: $25. RR

n Pizza with Santa

Dec. 2

KLM Lodge

5901 S. County Line Road, Hinsdale

(630) 789-7090

Santa is making a special stop for a pizza lunch, dessert and photo ops. Time noon to 1 p.m. Cost: $25. RR

n Midtown Men holiday


Dec. 2

McAninch Arts Center

College of DuPage

421 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn

(630) 942-4000

The four stars of the original cast of Broadway’s smash hit “Jersey Boys” celebrate with holiday classics including “Winter Wonderland,” “Let It Snow” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” plus signature renditions of some of the greatest rock ’n’ roll hits of the ’60s. Time: 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $62-$72.

n ‘A Festive Nowell’

Dec. 2 & 3

Emmanuel Episcopal Church

203 S. Kensington Ave., La Grange

(708) 580-0997

The Tower Chorale, under the direction of Patrick Gordon, offers its annual holiday concert, featuring well-known selections and an audience carol sing-along. Time: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 2, 3 p.m. Dec. 3. Tickets: $25, $22 for seniors and students.

n Winter Wonderland

Dec. 3

KLM Park

5905 S. County Line Road

(630) 789-7090

This special event features photos with Santa, music, holiday crafts and activities, visits with characters from “Frozen,” a hot chocolate bar, treats station and more. The village also will collect toys for a Toys for Tots drive. Times: 9, 10 and 11 a.m. and noon. Cost: $20 per person.

n ‘The Nutcracker’

Dec. 8

The Community House

415 W. Eighth St., Hinsdale

Enjoy an intimate performance of the ballet by West Suburban Ballet Conservatory. Santa will greet families, snacks and crafts will be offered, and kids will have a chance to dance on stage with performers following the show as adults enjoy live music and cocktails. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Time: 6 p.m. Tickets: $55 for adults, $15 for children.

n Holiday Favorites with the Jolly Boys

Dec. 9

Hinsdale Public Library

20 E. Maple St.

(630) 986-1976

Enjoy this performance of holiday favorites with Hinsdale’s own Jolly Boys and embrace the season. Hot chocolate will be provided. Time: 3 to 4 p.m. RR

n Holiday Concert

Dec. 9

Good Shepherd Lutheran Church

1310 Shepherd Drive, Naperville

(630) 476-9072

The New Horizons Band of DuPage will perform selections of holiday favorites. The concert will include sing-alongs, the New Horizons Concert Band, Brass Choir, German Band, Jazz Band and Woodwind Consort. New Horizons consists of musicians from Chicago and the surrounding suburbs under the direction of Maryann Flock. Light refreshments will follow the concert. Time: 3 p.m. Admission is free; donations will be accepted.

n ‘What the Elf’

Dec. 9

McAninch Arts Center

College of DuPage

421 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn

(630) 942-4000

The Second City returns to deliver a heaping serving of seasonal satire in this show, which is the perfect alternative to those same old holiday performances. Nothing is off limits in this fast-paced, interactive, comedy revue filled with style, wit and plenty of that famous (and festive) Second City improv. The show may contain adult language and themes. Time: 5 and 8 p.m. Tickets: $30-$48.

n Sounds of the Season

Dec. 9

Elmhurst Christian Reformed Church

149 W. Brush Hill Road

The Agape Ringers, Chicago’s premier handbell ensemble, and guitarist Jeff Kust will perform a variety of holiday music familiar and exotic, including arrangements of “I Wonder As I Wander,” “Brazilian Sleigh Bells,” and “Winter Wonderland,” as well as original compositions and other favorites arranged for bells. Kust will feature on the Puerto Rican cuatro. Time: 4 p.m. Tickets: $27-$36.

n Holiday Art and Craft Market

Dec. 9 & 10

Mayslake Peabody Estate

1717 W. 31st St., Oak Brook

(630) 206-9566

Shop for quality artisan holiday gifts for family and friends. All ages are welcome; those under 18 must be with an adult. Hours: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 9, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 10.

n Hinsdale for the Holidays

Dec. 9 & 16

Burlington Park

30 E. Chicago Ave.

Celebrate the holidays by decorating gingerbread cookies, taking a horse-drawn carriage ride and visiting Santa. Time: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

n Voctave

Dec. 10

McAninch Arts Center

College of DuPage

421 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn

(630) 942-4000

This a cappella sensation will leave audiences feeling merry and bright with a program packed with holiday favorites. Time: 7 p.m. Tickets: $65-$75.

n Christmas Classics

Dec. 15

Union Church of Hinsdale

137 S. Garfield Ave.

Join the Ostrega Uhl Project in its Christmas festival performance of its second season. The concert will open with traditional favorites, starting with a unique arrangement of “O Come, O Come Emmanuel” for violin, harp and piano, featuring guest harpist Nichole Young. Enjoy music from Christmases long, long ago to beautiful themes and melodies from favorite Christmas and holiday themed movies of today, culminating in a sing-along at the end of the concert. Time: 7 to 8:30 p.m. Tickets: $25 for adults, free for kids 12 and younger.

n Breakfast with Santa

Dec. 16

The Community House

415 W. Eighth St.

(630) 323-7500

Bring the family together for a delicious breakfast of scrambled eggs, French toast, hash browns, pancakes, pastries, juice and coffee and, of course, pictures with Santa. Time: 9 to 10:15 a.m. Cost: $35, free for babies under 1.

n ‘Nutcracker’ virtual


Dec. 16-17

(630) 986-1976

The library is excited to provide access to a stage recording of “The Nutcracker” by The Royal Ballet that Hinsdaleans can watch at home. Time: all day. RR

n ‘Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley’

Through Dec. 17

McAninch Arts Center

College of DuPage

425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn

(630) 942-4000

Two years after the end of “Pride and Prejudice,” the Bennet family is spending Christmas at Pemberley when an unexpected guest joins the festivities in this romantic comedy, rooted in the complications and joys of being part of a spirited family. The show contains adult themes and language. A pre-show talk with the director and designers will be held at 6:45 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 16; a post-show talk with the director and actors will be held Friday, Nov. 24. Times: 8 p.m. Thursdays to Saturdays, 3 p.m. Sundays, 3 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 25; no show on Thanksgiving. Tickets: $44, $42 for seniors.

n Illumination

Through Jan. 6

Morton Arboretum

4100 Route 53, Lisle

(630) 725-2066

Celebrate the holidays and marvel at how light transforms a magnificent landscape at the arboretum’s 11th annual tree lights display. Journey along a 1-mile paved walking path amid festive music and lighting effects that highlight the beauty of trees in winter. Visitors can enjoy s’mores or stop in one of the concession tents for a snack and beverage. Choose the price, date and time to attend; the earlier the purchase, the cheaper the admission. Time: visit the website for availability. Tickets: $16-$41.75, with member discounts.


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