Christmas 2009 celebrations in Chicago start as early as the day after Thanksgiving, and the entire city will be lit up with festive lights, holiday décor and animated displays by the first week of December. If you plan on celebrating Christmas in Chicago in 2009, here are some fun and festive activities to add to your itinerary:
Dinner Under the Great Tree at Macy’s
Macy’s on State Street unveils the Great Tree covered with lights and festive decorations around Thanksgiving each year. Enjoy a meal or holiday treats in the Walnut Room, and enjoy dining under the 45-foot tree and glittering ornaments. The tree is a spectacle in itself, and is a fun way to kick off your Christmas celebration.
Christmas Around the World at the Museum of Science and Industry
The Museum of Science and Industry hosts a special Christmas Around the World exhibit each Christmas season, and the Christmas 2009 celebration will include a beautiful tree decorated in shimmering lights and glittering baubles, interactive exhibits for the kids, and a Holiday Stage with carolers and holiday performances.
Unveiling of Macy’s Holiday Windows
Every year, the Macy’s store on State Street changes its window displays and turns them into miniature holiday scenes. Head to the store with camera in hand to capture the magic of Christmas in each display. Some of the displays are decorated as Santa’s workshops, scenes from the North Pole, and other holiday-themed scenes. The animated Christmas windows in 2009 will go up the first week of November and run through the second week of January.
Santa’s House in Daley Plaza
Head out to Daley Plaza for the day to see Santa and share your wish list. For the Christmas 2009 season, Santa will be making an appearance from 11 a.m to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on the weekends starting November 26, 2009. Admission is free, and you can bring a camera along to get pictures taken with Santa at no charge. Daley Plaza is located at 50 West Washington Street in Chicago.
Winter Wonderland at Lincoln Park Zoo
The Lincoln Park Zoo will be hosting its annual ZooLights festival for the Christmas 2009 season, which means the entire park will be transformed into a winter wonderland filled with holiday decorations, glittering lights and animated scenes. The zoo will be hosting free seasonal events starting November 28, 2009 including live ice sculpture sessions, photos with Santa and holiday-themed crafts. Lincoln Park Zoo is located at 2200 Canon Drive in Chicago. Call (312) 742-2000 for more information.
Bank of America Winter Wonderfest on Navy Pier
Navy Pier needs to be among the top destinations to visit for Christmas 2009, the place to see Santa arrive by boat for the holiday season, visit the eWish Center in the Festival Hall to write electronic notes to Santa, and see the holiday fireworks displays, sparkling lights, ornaments and décor along the Pier. The Navy Pier festivities start the first week of December in 2009, and Santa is expected to arrive a few days after Thanksgiving.
Other fun events for Christmas 2009 include the Lincoln Square Christkindl Market, the annual “Joy of Toys” Holiday Wrap party, and the Chicago Botanic Garden Reindog Parade. Whether you’re heading to Chicago with young kids or are celebrating the season with friends, add some of these fun events and activities to your itinerary for a fun-filled celebration!