5 November shows to gobble up

So you’re not quite ready to carve the turkey with Ebenezer Scrooge or pirouette with some sugar plum fairies? Don’t worry—November is overflowing with great family entertainment that’s a bit more fun than fa-la-la-la-la.

Jack and Annie, those heroes of the Magic Tree House books, help audiences travel back in time to 1915 New Orleans—no time machine required. In Magic Tree House: A Night in New Orleans, you’ll meet a teenage Louis Armstrong, who needs a little help on his way to becoming the King of Jazz. Forget Thanksgiving—start counting down the days to Mardi Gras.

Recommended for families with kids 5-10. $15 and up. Check website for schedule. Emerald City Theatre Company, Apollo Theater, 2540 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago. (773) 935-6100.

What do kids have in common with a china rabbit? Find out at The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, Chicago Children’s Theatre’s adaptation of Kate DiCamillo’s award-winning book. Edward gets lost at sea, then bounces from person to person until he discovers the power of love. Not a bad message to remember as the holidays approach! Recommended for families with kids 7 and up. $28 and up. Tuesdays-Sundays through Nov. 15. Ruth Page Center for the Arts, 1016 N. Dearborn, Chicago. (872) 222-9555.

It’s not easy being new. That’s the lesson that Nick learns in Adventure Stage Chicago’s production of New Kid, which follows Nick and his family as they move to America, learn a new language and get acquainted with something that transcends all cultures: bullying. Hopefully it will encourage your kids to roll out the welcome mat the next time they run into someone new. Recommended for families with kids 8 and up. $10-$17. 4 p.m. Saturdays through Nov. 21; 7 p.m. Nov. 20. Vittum Theater, 1012 N. Noble St., Chicago. (773) 342-4141.

Hope is a powerful thing, especially when you’re facing new challenges in a new place. Esperanza Rising follows a young girl who loves dresses, parties and all things pretty, but finds a much more difficult life when she’s forced to flee to the U.S. and start over with her family. Recommended for families with kids 8 and up. $10. 10 a.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays and Nov. 6; 2 p.m. Saturdays and Nov. 1. Chicago Playworks at DePaul University, Merle Reskin Theatre at DePaul University, 60 E. Balbo Drive, Chicago. (312) 922-1999.

Long before he started selling fast-food fish sticks, Long John Silver was the famous pirate who led a band of rogues (and young Jim Hawkins) in Robert Louis Stevenson’s iconic Treasure Island. See the classic adventure come to life at Chicago’s storied Lookingglass Theater, and remember: X marks the spot. Recommended for families with kids 10 and up. $35 and up. Check website for schedule. Lookingglass Theatre in the Water Tower Water Works, 821 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago. (312) 337-0665.

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