10 tree lighting ceremonies not to miss in Chicagoland

There’s something warm about a community coming together in the cold, hot chocolates in hand, holiday music twinkling, waiting for the oohs and aahs as the city or village tree is lit. Here’s a list of tree lighting ceremonies around the Chicago area to see this holiday season.

 

Illuminate 900: Tree Lighting Ceremony

 

When: Nov. 21

 

Where: 900 North Michigan Shops, 900 Michigan Ave., Chicago

 

Count down with Santa as 900 North Michigan Shops pulls the switch on their 50-foot tree. Their mall will celebrate with live holiday performances, “elfies” with The Real Elf and sugar cookie decorating.

 

City of Chicago Christmas Tree Lighting

 

When: Nov. 22

 

Where: Millennium Park’s Wrigley Square, Michigan Ave. & Randolph St., Chicago

 

Enjoy the family fun with live music, performances and a special appearance by Santa and Mrs. Claus. Tree lighting begins at 6 p.m.

 

Winter Lights Holiday Walk

 

When: Nov. 22

 

Where: Water Street Mall, 24 E. Downer Place, Aurora

 

Enjoy a holiday parade ushering in Santa and Mrs. Claus. It’s followed by a grand fireworks display along the banks of the Fox River. The official City of Aurora Holiday Tree, located in front of Grand Army of the Republic Museum, will be illuminated by Mayor Irvin, and Little Miss Aurora and Little Mr. Aurora. The twinkling lit streets of downtown Aurora will also be filled with costumed characters, festive photo-ops and much more.

 

Light Up the Park Tree Lighting

 

When: Nov. 29

 

Where: Parkway Bank Park Entertainment District, 5501 Park Place, Rosemont

 

Parkway Bank Park will turn on their tree lights and a spectacular display of more than 80,000 lights in the park. Enjoy ice skating, strolling carolers, sleigh rides, and Santa and Mrs. Claus.

 

Holiday Tree Lighting at Lake Katherine

 

When: Nov. 29

 

Where: Lake Katherine Nature Center and Botanic Gardens, 7402 Lake Katherine Drive, Palos Heights

 

Activities include a visit with Santa Claus, real reindeer, crafts and face painting, plus hot chocolate and cookies.

 

Light Up the Holidays Festival & Parade

 

When: Nov. 29

 

Where: Chicago Street between Van Buren and Jackson, Joliet

 

Activities begin downtown as early as 10:00 a.m., and include the Fantastic Fun Fair in the Joliet Area Historical Museum’s auditorium, as well as activities in the Joliet Public Library, Jitters Coffeehouse, Chicken-n-Spice, Chevere Latin Cafe, JJC City Center Campus and more.

 

Tree Lighting Ceremony at Lincoln Common

 

When: Dec. 5

 

Where: Lincoln Common, 2345 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago

 

Stop by Lincoln Common’s first-ever tree lighting. While there, see special holiday performances, live reindeer, Santa and more.

 

Holiday Lights in Homewood

 

When: Dec. 6

 

Where: Martin Avenue between Chestnut Road and Kroner Avenue, Homewood

 

Watch Santa flip the switch for the annual tree lighting ceremony. Throughout the downtown, costumed characters and carolers spread holiday cheer, follow a parade of brightly, decorated antique cars to Hickory Road, and watch live ice sculpting demos, take photos with Santa, hot cocoa, bonfire, and holiday music.

 

Geneva’s Great Tree Lighting and Christmas Walk

 

When: Dec. 6

 

Where: Geneva Court House, 100 S. Third St., Geneva

 

Santa Lucia arrives by horse-drawn carriage and Santa arrives to open the Gingerbread House. Enjoy carolers, the Great Tree lighting, old fashioned candy cane pull, roasted chestnuts, Swedish cookies and shopping.

 

Greektown Christmas Ceremony

 

When: Dec. 8

 

Where: Greektown Halsted Street between Van Buren and Monroe streets

 

The Greektown Christmas ceremony will feature a specialty Christmas tree lighting with caroling from Greek school students, a Santa visit featuring complimentary photos for kids along with hot chocolate and roasted chestnuts in a heated tent.

 


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This article originally published on Nov. 9, 2018. It has been updated with the most recent information.

 

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