10 places to build your gingerbread fantasy house

Chicago architecture set a standard and influenced the industry. Chicagoans, big and small, can make their mark on their own holidays with gingerbread architecture and decorating classes throughout the area all season long. 

Gingerbread Decorating at The Peninsula

When: Daily through Dec. 24

Where: The Peninsula Chicago, 108 E. Superior St., Chicago

Cost: $695 family of 4, reservations required.

The 90-minute private gingerbread decorating class begins with a kitchen tour followed by the chance to decorate your own gingerbread cookies with instruction from The Peninsula Chicago’s pastry team, while enjoying festive Afternoon Tea.

Gingerbread Houses

When: Weekends through Dec. 22

Where: Taste Buds Kitchen, 2521 Waukegan Road, Bannockburn

Cost: $39 per pair

Parent and child pairs work together to design and decorate their very own Gingerbread House. Enjoy the endless decorating options, from frosted candy roofs to pretzel picket fences, and cheerful holiday tunes while sipping hot chocolate. Recommended for children ages 2 and up. 

Chicago Dogs Gingerbread Cookie Party

When: Dec. 8

Where: Impact Field, 9850 Balmoral Ave., Rosemont

Cost: $15 adults, $12 kids

Guests can enjoy gingerbread house decorating alongside hot chocolate, coffee and cookies. Santa Claus, along with Chicago Dogs mascots Squeeze and Ketchup, will make special appearances for holiday photos with fans. 

Gingerbread Train

When: Dec. 13

Where: Bolingbrook Park District, 200 S. Lindsey Lane, Bolingbrook

Cost: $22 first child, $15 resident first child, $15 second child, $8 resident second child.

Decorate a gingerbread train and gingerbread cookies with children ages 3-6. Make a gingerbread man craft, hear the story of the Gingerbread Man, and go on a gingerbread man hunt. Each team of a child and parent will have one gingerbread train to decorate and take home. 

Gingerbread House Workshop

When: Dec. 14-15

Where: Morton Arboretum, 4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle

Cost: $13 (Gingerbread house costs $7)

Take a winter walk, find out what sweet treats grow on trees, then decorate a keepsake, light-up, chipboard gingerbread house with natural materials to take home. This unique, crafty experience is fun for a pair or the whole family. 

Build Your Own Gingerbread House

When: Dec. 14

Where: Art Institute of Chicago, 159 E. Monroe St., Chicago

Cost: $80 family of four, $65 members

Create an edible dream home with your family while listening to classic holiday tunes and enjoying sweet and savory bites. Gingerbread kits, frosting, and decorating candies are included.

Gingerbread Decorating

When: Dec. 14 and 21

Where: The Clubhouse, 298 Oakbrook Center, Oak Brook

Cost: $35

Parents are encouraged to join their children as one of Santa’s helpers walks kids through the steps to decorate the perfect gingerbread house. The little decorator’s Junior Member lunch is included. 

Make Your Own Gingerbread House

When: Dec. 15

Where: Westfield Old Orchard, 4999 Old Orchard Center, Skokie

Cost: $69

Start a new holiday tradition for your whole family decorating gingerbread houses. Everyone will enjoy adding tasty and colorful goodies to the gingerbread house to make it the most unique house on the block. Together, we will also bake and decorate a variety of ornaments for you to bring home some of that holiday spirit.

Gingerbread House Class

When: Dec. 17

Where: Stony Creek Restaurant & Banquet Facility, 5850 W. 103rd St., Oak Lawn

Cost: $20

Create a gingerbread house with your child. Recommended for ages 2 and older; instructions and materials are included. There will be one gingerbread house per child. 

Family Gingerbread House Build

When: Dec. 21

Where: Cakewalk Chicago, 1741 West 99th St., Chicago

Cost: $50

Build an edible dream home or jump right in and decorate a pre-built beauty. The buffet of sweet decorating treats to adorn your mansion is unrivaled. We know that gingerbread building is hard work and each family registration includes a hot cocoa bar. A holiday movie “theater” with family classics will keep you in the spirit. 


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This article originally published Nov. 14, 2018 on ChicagoParent.com. It has been updated with the most recent information. 

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