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To-Dos - Suburban Style: Happy Holidays

Seasonal Lights and Delights!

By Tracye Dee

Have a holly jolly Christmas; it's the best time of the year.  It’s the season for giving and remembering others by spreading some holiday cheer.  So, say hello to someone new and grab a friend you know. Get out and enjoy some of these holiday happenings, and let the spirit of the season flow!

It wouldn’t be Christmas without sparkling lights and outdoor fun. This weekend, several light festivals are taking place.  We couldn’t name them all here, but here are a few:

homewood holiday lightsCheck out The Holiday Lights in Homewood!  Get things started on the evening of Friday, December 2, from 6-9pm in downtown Homewood, at Irwin Park.  Once Irwin Park is aglow, walk 2 blocks west and watch as Hickory Road transforms into Homewood’s very own Christkindlmarket with delicious desserts, live reindeer, costumed carolers, hot cider and mulled wine, luminaries and exciting ice sculpturing.  It's downtown Homewood’s busiest time as residents travel from shop to shop on musical trolleys.  Riders hop on and hop off visiting merchants who are open late, hosting children’s holiday craft activities, serving up holiday hors d' oeuvres and offering generous discounts on unique gifts you won’t find in any mall.  Just look for the Open Flag!  Trolleys will stop at all downtown public parking lots, including St. Joseph’s Church, Irwin Park and Hickory Road.  This To-Do, including the trolley rides, is free!

As part of its Crete Country Christmas, the Village of Crete will be having The Parade of Lights on Saturday, December 3, starting at 6:30pm.   Get there earlier in the day and enjoy the Kris Kringle market and horse drawn carriage rides from 1pm to 3pm. This To-Do is free!  You can also enjoy the Symphony In Lights at The Bolingbrook Promenade for free!  The light show starts on the hour nightly from 6-9pm through December 31st.

Holiday Magic at Brookfield ZooIt’s the 30th anniversary of Holiday Magic at Brookfield Zoo!  Boasting to have the largest light festival in the Chicagoland area, Brookfield Zoo will feature over a million bright lights, animated light displays and a laser light show.  Many of the indoor animal exhibits will be open, including the newest: the Great Bear Wilderness.  Open Saturdays & Sundays through December 18th and Monday, December 26 through Saturday, December 31.  Hours are from 4pm to 9pm and admission for adults is $13.50, children (3-11) and seniors (over 65) are $9.50. Parking is $9.

Chicago Botanic Garden Wonderland ExpressTake a magical trip to a winter wonderland of twinkling lights, gingerbread village display, decorated trees, a 10,000 square foot exhibit of a miniature train display and holiday beauty and more at the Chicago Botanic Garden Wonderland Express!  Young and old will be delighted by the sights, sounds and "Family Drop-In" activities.  This To-Do continues daily (except Christmas day) through January 1st.  The cost for adults is $10; children (3-12), and seniors, $8; children under 2, free.

There’s nothing like a traditional holiday play to fill your heart with joy! It’s A Wonderful Life, a live radio play, will make you feel like you've been transported to the 1940s.  The production continues through December 23rd on Thursdays through Sundays (and select Wednesdays) at The Main Stage Theater at Pheasant Run in St. Charles.  Tickets are $30-40.

You could just about spend the entire holiday season at the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre in Arlington Heights!  Their Holiday Series includes music, theater and comedy.  Be sure to check out A Christmas Carol, which continues through December 24th.  It’s an exciting and magical musical retelling of the classic tale that’s the perfect addition to any holiday celebration. Appropriate for all ages.  Ticket cost is $15-30.

con funk shunThe South Suburban Chicago Links areGetting in the Holiday Groove this Saturday, December 3rd for their annual concert and luncheon. Con Funk Shun will perform at the Odyssey Country Club in Tinley Park. The reception starts at 10:30am and lunch at 11am. Tickets are $100.

We hope your Christmas is filled with the magic the season brings. Wishing you love, peace, and joy!

Tracye Dee

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