Weekend Windup: {Family Fun in the Chicago Suburbs December 17-19, 2021}

Thursday, December 16, 2021

Family Fun in the Chicago Suburbs December 17-19, 2021
Family Fun in the Chicago Suburbs December 17-19, 2021

It is the most wonderful time of the year! We are in the heart of the holiday season and the Winter Solstice is upon us! There are some great ones this weekend. These are my picks:

Ongoing

October 13 - January 2, 2022 Par Excellence Redux: The Back 9, Elmhurst Art Museum. This is a fantastic opportunity to experience an interactive exhibit created by local artists. In honor of the original Par Excellence exhibit at The School of the Art Institute, local artists have created 9 unique mini golf holes that you can actually play! To enjoy this exhibit, you do have to reserve a tee time. Please see website for more information and how to book your time.

Through January 2 Lightscape at Chicago Botanic Garden November 12-January 2; Lightscape returns to Chicago Botanic Garden fusing old favorites, reimagined displays and new show stoppers! The gentle amble through stunning designs. Tickets are on sale now, but will go fast. So, purchase them soon! SOLD OUT

Through January 9 Let It Shine Drive Thru Light Show in Northbrook, Schaumburg and Aurora, November 12-January 9; light installations synchronized to music, $29.99-$39.99; fast pass can be added on for $20; see website for more information and tickets. Tickets are only available online.

Throeugh January 2 Santa's Rock N Lights, Lake County Fairgrounds, Grayslake, drive through light show of nearly 1000 elements, November 19 - January 2; 5PM-9:30PM see website for more information and to purchase tickets. Tickets may be purchased online only

Through January 2 Illumination Tree Lights at The Morton Arboretum in Lisle, November 20-January 2. This year's event will use lights, motion and sound to highlight nature on a one-mile paved path. Visitors can warm up at bonfires and in the concession tent. Days vary. See website for schedule and to purchase tickets. They do sell out for this event, so snag tickets soon!

Through January  2 Winter Magic, Will Hills Golf Course, Northbrook, drive-through light event, November 20-January 2

Through New Year Holiday Lights in  North School Park, Arlington Heights

Ongoing  - December 19 Edith Farnsworth Holiday House Tour, Aurora, enjoy a 1955 holiday adventure, tickets are $25 pp, register online, tix do sell out

Ongoing-  December 30 Festival of Lights Cosley Zoo Wheaton; November 26 -December 30 (closed Christmas Day), fresh Christmas trees and garland for sale, light displays will decorate the zoo, see website for more info, event is free and donations are very much appreciated.

Ongoing Holiday Festival of Lights, Phillip's Park Zoo, Aurora, Northern Illinois' largest drive-thru display, November 26 - December 26 free but donations accepted.

Ongoing Naper Lights -- downtown Naperville 4PM-10PM

Ongoing through December 24 Willow Creek Wonderland Walk, South Barrington, 10 miles of lights on 55 structures, free but you must register, December 1-24, closed Mondays

Ongoing through December 24 Reindeer Road, Naperville, December 1-24, $10 per car, drive-thru

Ongoing Tour the Frank Lloyd Wright House and Studio during the holidays: Every year, the Oak Park home of the famous architect is decked out with period decorations for the holidays. The tree is absolutely not to be missed! Be sure to reserve your tour online. Tours are $20 per person.

Ongoing through December 19 Holiday Express at Blackberry Farm in Aurora: Through December 19, the Holiday Express train transports families through holiday cheer. The event incorporates tons of holiday fun including both new and old traditions. Tickets are $8 pp.

Ongoing through December Dickens Holiday Village: Antioch's Dickens Holiday Village includes a growing number Dickens scenes throughout the village. Kringle's Christmas Village featuring ornate dioramas will be indoors. Antioch's transformation to Olde England runs through the New Year and is free!

Check out my piece on Holiday Lights in the Suburbs Including Home Displays

Friday, December 17

December 17 River Trail Nature Center Owl Prowl, Northbrook, 7PM-9PM, enjoy a night hike learning about and looking for owls, free but must register, ages 8 and up

December 17 & 18 Candlelight Hike, Prairieview Education Center, Crystal Lake, 5PM-9PM

Saturday, December 18

December 18 & 19 Festive Farmhouse, Wagner Farm, Glenview, 10AM-3PM, $5 pp paid in gift shop, learn about Christmas during the 1920's in the farmhouse, smell chestnuts roasting and cookies baking, listen to music and more

December 18 & 19 Open House and Glass Demos,  James Wilbat Glass Studio, Mundelein, 10AM-5PM Sat, 10AM-4PM Sun, free

December 18 & 19 Make Glass Ornaments or Icicles at Patterson Glassworks, Mundelein, 10AM-4PM, $35-$65, reservation suggested

December 18 Rockin' Jewelry with Kids, Lizzadro Museum, Oak Brook, 1:30-2:15PM, $15 pp, ages 8 up, learn to make rock jewelry, register online

December 18 Wildlife Tracking and Observation, Willowbrook, Glen Ellyn, 2PM-4PM, learn about wildlife by spotting tracks and other evidence of wildlife, ages 12 & up (under 18 with adult), $5 pp, must  register

December 18 Play Day at the Museum! Make Ornaments, Elgin History Museum, 2PM-3PM, make ornaments to decorate the museum tree, ornaments in style of LeeWards which sold craft supplies and ornaments

December 18 Winter Solstice at Fabyan Japanese Garden, Geneva, 5PM-7PM, $10 pp, learn about the Winter Solstice in Japanese culture, enjoy music and refreshments, enjoy winter lights at the garden, register online

December 19

December 19 Look for an Evergreen Day, Ryerson, Deerfield, 12PM-3PM, head into the nature center to learn about evergreen and learn about self guided activities to learn more

December 19 Frozen Feathers, Crabtree Nature Center, Barrington, 1PM, take a winter walk to see wildlife in winter, ages 6 and up, free

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