5 days of free for winter break

Monday, Dec. 29

Start your week by taking your kids to the Holiday Sports Fest where they can run, jump and bounce off walls. Interactive zones include air hockey, boxing, golf, climbing walls, football, chess, tot’s zone, bowling, inflatable tumbling, tennis, fishing ponds, footbag, a giant slide, skateboarding/blading area, wrestling, cheerleading clinics and open courts for volleyball and basketball. There’s also entertainment and chill-out zones for families. The fest runs from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. today at McCormick Place, 2301 S. Martin Luther King Drive, Chicago. For more information check the Web site at egovcityofchicago.org.

Tuesday, Dec. 30

Combine a little learning with some fun by visiting the Chicago Fed Money Museum. The free museum offers guided tours lasting roughly 45 minutes at 1 p.m. today. You can also visit the Money Museum on your own at any time between 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Kids can see view millions of dollars in various denominations and learn to detect counterfeits. You can even take home a bag of shredded money as a souvenir. 230 S. LaSalle St., Chicago, chicagofed.org/education/money_museum.cfm, (312) 322-2400. If it’s not too cold out once the sun goes down, see the Lincoln Park Zoo lit up with more than one million lights at ZooLights, 5-9 p.m.

Wednesday, Dec. 31

Start your day off by taking advantage of a free day at the Museum of Science and Industry, 57th Street and Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, (773) 684-1414. The museum is open 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. and offers kids the chance to learn some science and have fun through interactive exhibits. Then head over to Navy Pier to ring in the holidays a little early. The Family Fireworks Show kicks off at 8:15 p.m., so you can beat the crowds and the kids’ bedtimes in celebrating the New Year.

Thursday, Jan. 1

What better way to start living your New Year’s resolution than a skate around the McCormick Tribune Plaza Ice Rink, located at the intersection of Michigan Avenue and Washington Street. Enjoy the views of Michigan Avenue as you and the kids strap on skates and glide away. Skating on the rink is free; skate rental is available for $9. A warming lobby, toilets and public lockers are available.

Friday, Jan. 2

If we’ve started the year out with snow, bundle up the kids, grab your inner tubes and head to Blackwell Forest Preserve, located at Winfield and Butterfield roads in Warrenville. When there’s more than 3 inches of snow, tubing is available at Mt. Hoy from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. If your inner tube has sprung a leak since summer, rent one there for $4. Call (630) 942-6200 or dupageforest.com/preserves/Blackwell.html.

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