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The Spirit of the Marathon: From Pheidippides to Today

National Hellenic Museum | Chicago , Ill.

Learn and connect to the history of the Marathon race, inspired by the Battle of Marathon (490 BC), from the first Marathon race in the 1896 Athens Olympics to today. Includes section on The Chicago Marathon. Children are invited to participate in a Race for Pheidippides scavenger hunt to redeem a prize. Exhibit coloring pages also available.

Cost: Free with admission

Snowflake's Learn to Skate Clinic

Rink Side Ice Arena & Family Entertainment Center | Gurnee, Ill.

Snowflake "Learn to Skate" Clinics are an introduction to Rink Side's learn to skate classes. They are open to any child ages 2-11, there will be 30 minutes of instruction and 15 minutes of free time. There is a public session following the clinic and everyone can stay to skate! (Regular admission fees apply.) Sessions are held Dec. 26-29, 31, Jan. 2-5.

When: 10:30-11:15 a.m.
Cost: $12 per clinic; skate rental $3

Sweet Home Chicago: The History of America’s Candy Capital

Harold Washington Library Center | Chicago, Ill.

FREE  

Exhibit includes numerous artifacts, photographs and other documentary items that tell the story of Chicago's iconic candy makers, including Snickers, Lemonheads, Butterfingers and Cracker Jack.

Cost: Free

Oink, Baa, Moo: Farm Fun

Waukegan Public Library | Waukegan, Ill.

FREE  

Interactive learning centers include a barn slide, apple orchard and chicken coop. Maggie, a life-sized fiberglass milking cow sponsored by Golden Oaks Farm in Wauconda, will be the focus of the new exhibit. Maggie is over five feet tall and features a working udder that recirculates the water that children "milk."

Cost: Free

Brookfield Zoo Annual Holiday Magic

Brookfield , Ill.

Features more than one million twinkling lights illuminating the zoo's walkways. Enjoy animated light displays, laser light shows, ice-carving demonstrations, live musical and dance performances, costumed characters, and animal Zoo Chats with keepers.

When: 4-9 p.m.
Cost: Free with zoo admission

Gingerbread Festival

Downtown Downers Grove | Downers Grove, Ill.

FREE  

Includes Gingerbread Story-time, Tree Lighting Ceremony, Gingerbread Man Hunt, Gingerbread House Contest, visits with Santa in his Gingerbread House, Small Business Saturday, Gingerbread Boy and Girl perusing town, and Complimentary Carriage Rides. For more information, visit www.downtowndg.org or call (630) 725-0991.

When: to
Cost: Free

Help Wanted: The Holiday Servants Tour

Driehaus Museum | Chicago, Ill.

The mansion served as the Nickerson's winter residence during the late 19 th century, and the family spent every holiday season in Chicago lavishly entertaining acquaintances, friends, and family from near and far. During this tour, participants are transported back to the winter months of 1899, where they discover through a servant's eyes how the Nickersons celebrated the holidays. As applicants to a position in domestic service, participants learn the best methods for preparing plum pudding, how to prevent the new electrical lights on the Christmas tree from catching it on fire, and more.

When: Tours begin every Friday and Saturday at 5:30 p.m. and Sundays at 10 a.m.
Cost: $15, $8 kids 12 and under

Discover the Power of Plants

Garfield Park Conservatory | Chicago, Ill.

FREE  

Drop in anytime between 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. at the conservatory's Elizabeth Morse Genius Children's Garden to plant an imaginary garden, build a tropical habitat, help water the plants, or read a book under the tropical canopy. Runs through entire 2012.

When: 11 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Cost: Free

Snowman Contest

Irons Oaks | Olympia Fields, Ill.

FREE  

Build a snowman out of biodegradable and natural items to win. Fill out an entry form at the main office.

Cost: Free

Blue Man Group

Blue Man Group at Briar Street Theatre | Chicago, Ill.

Blue Man Group is a multi-sensory experience that fuses innovative theatrical spectacle and powerful original music with hilarious comedy to create a performance experience unlike any other. One of the world's most popular theatrical productions, today's Blue Man Group is a blend of signature material that has been in the show since the opening, as well as newer passages that examine the influence of technology on today's world with a funny and perceptive look at contemporary communication vehicles.

When: Performance dates and times vary. A full schedule can be found at: www.blueman.com/chicago/buy-tickets
Cost: $49-$99
 










 
 
 
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