Best Kwanzaa Events for Kids in Chicago

Families can celebrate African heritage with these events.

Kwanzaa, which means “first fruits of the harvest” in Swahili, honors African heritage in the African-American culture. It lasts one week, beginning on Dec. 26 and ending on Jan. 1, with each day devoted to one of the seven core principles, known in Swahili as Nguzo Saba.

Here are some of the family-friendly Kwanzaa celebrations taking place in Chicago and virtually this year.

Presenting the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa – Self-Determination

Dec. 6, 2021

  • Hosted by: Richard M. Daley Branch
  • Cost: Free

You will create a Kinara Paper Craft at this virtual event. You need a printout or template of a kinara, scissors, red, green and black construction paper and a glue stick. Registration required.

Presenting the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa – Collective Works and Responsibility

Dec. 7, 2021

  • Hosted by: Harold Washington Library Center
  • Cost: Free

Presenter Niambi Muhammad will teach everyone about Ujima through storytelling, education and fun. Registration required.

Presenting the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa – Creativity

Dec. 9, 2021

  • Hosted by: King Branch
  • Cost: Free

Their presenter, Ms. Kellye demonstrates how to make your very own “Mkeka,” a paper version of a woven mat. She will also delight the participants with a wonderful children’s story. Registration required.

Presenting the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa – Unity and Cooperative Economics

Dec. 11, 2021

  • Hosted by: West Chicago Avenue and the Sherman Park Branch
  • Cost: Free

Registrants will be able to pick up a Kwanzaa-themed Grab and Go craft kit for the program where they will learn about two of the seven principles of Kwanzaa, unity and cooperative economics. Registration required.

Kwanzaa Pre-Celebration

Dec. 14, 2021

  • Hosted by: Chicago Public Library
  • Cost: Free

Storyteller Niambi Muhammad will take your family on a Kwanzaa journey to explore principles such as unity, purpose, and faith. For all ages.

Presenting the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa – Faith

Dec. 15, 2021

  • Hosted by: South Chicago Branch
  • Cost: Free

During this event, the storytelling team of Kucha Brownlee and Baba Tony Brown will regale you with Kwanzaa stories and songs. Registration required.

Kwanzaa Online Family Festival 2021

Dec. 26, 2021

  • Hosted by: Simon Education
  • Cost: Free

The presentation will consist of family assignments, quizzes, culturally rich picture puzzles, music, Black history tasks and informative commentary by the award-winning writer and educationalist, David Simon.

Children’s Kwanzaa Village 2021

Dec. 29, 2021

  • Hosted by: Vision Transformation Firm & Toni Rose Foundation
  • Cost: Free

During the celebration, we will learn ways to maintain wellness for ourselves, our family and community. Join them for an evening of song, dance, poetry, community and joy.

Kwanzaa Celebration

Dec. 29, 2021

Hear from the storytellers Kucha Brownlee and Baba Tony Brown about the seven principles of Kwanzaa. Kids can create their own masterpieces at the craft table.


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