This week while you’re trying to finish your holiday shopping you should take some time to enjoy some Christmas events and more great things to do in Chicago this week.


1. Music Box Christmas Double Feature

  • When: Until December 24th.
  • Where: Music Box Theatre; 3733 N. Southport Ave., Chicago, IL 60613.

Why this is fun: Treat your eyeballs to some classic holiday cheer with screenings of two beloved Christmas films at the Music Box Theatre. Follow Jimmy Stewart’s path to redemption in It’s A Wonderful Life or sing along with Bing Crosby in White Christmas during this annual tribute to seasonal cinema. Arrive early to meet Santa and stay in your seat to belt out Christmas carols during the intermission, accompanied by the theater’s organist. You can snag tickets to one movie or both, depending on how much pure joy you can handle in the span of an afternoon.

For more details, visit the website


2. Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s Merry, Merry Chicago!

  • When: December 20 – 23rd; 3:00 PM or 7:30 PM.
  • Where: Symphony Center; 220 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60604.

Why this is fun: The Chicago Symphony Orchestra decks the halls of Symphony Center, teaming up with the Chicago Symphony Chorus for an evening of holiday standards and festive arrangements of classical compositions. In addition to Christmas carols like “White Christmas” and “Angels we Have Heard on High,” this year’s program showcases choral works like the “Hallelujah Chorus” from Handel’s Messiah and an original composition by CSO violist Max Raimi.

For more details, visit the website


3. Pasta Making With Tortello

  • When: Until February 19th: 10:30 AM – 12:30 PM.
  • Where: Time Out Market Chicago; 916 W. Fulton Market, Chicago, IL 60607.

Why this is fun: Go ahead and play with your food! Tortello’s pasta experts teach the art of handcrafted noodles at this interactive class in the Event Kitchen. Pasta aficionados are invited to create volcanoes of dough, hand-roll the pasta and learn the artform behind intricate shapes. After all that hard work, attendees are invited to enjoy a family-style dinner at the Chef’s Table, featuring fan-favorite plates from Tortello, like tortelli di burrata, stuzzichini, seasonal veggies and desert. Ready to experience the true spirit of Italian hospitality?

For more details, visit the website


4. Ice Skating in Millennium Park

  • When: Until March 8th.
  • Where: Millennium Park; 55 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL 60602.

Why this is fun: Skate under the Chicago skyline and within eyeshot of the Chicago Christmas Tree at the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink in Millennium Park. Admission to the rink is free, and you can rent skates for $13–$15. The most popular time to hit the rink is in the evening, so show up earlier if you don’t feel like waiting in line for your chance to slide around. Take advantage of free skating lessons on Fridays at 11am and Saturdays and Sundays at 9am. If it seems too warm to skate, call ahead—this rink is open through March 8, weather permitting.

For more details, visit the website


5. Maxwell Street Market

  • When: Sunday, December 22nd; 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM.
  • Where: Maxwell Street Market; 800 S. Desplaines St., Chicago, IL60607.

Why this is fun: Originally established in the late 1800s, the Maxwell Street Market brought vendors, musicians and cooks to an open-air flea market where shoppers could find just about anything they wanted. The market introduced the Maxwell Street Polish sausage, provided a venue for rising Chicago blues musicians and was immortalized in a scene in The Blues Brothers. These days, the market sets up on nearby Desplaines Street (between Roosevelt and Howard) every Sunday, where visitors will find vendors hawking their wares, an abundance of delicious Mexican food and ocassional performances by local bands and dance troupes. Don’t let the cold or wet weather scare you away—the Maxwell Street Market takes place outdoors year-round.

For more details, visit the website


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