Your kids are probably busy making those fringed vests out of grocery bags in anticipation of Thanksgiving, which makes it the perfect time to learn about the actual Native American tribes that lived in Illinois. At Elk Grove Historical Museum’s Native American Day, visitors can listen to traditional stories, try their hand at Native American games and get a little crafty creating a beaded necklace and cornhusk doll. And if the weather cooperates, atatl-throwing and fire-making demonstrations are also on the docket. Free, $3 crafts. 1-4 p.m. Nov. 1. 399 Biesterfield Road, Elk Grove Village. (847) 439-3994.
Shhh, it’s a surprise! The Chicago Symphony Orchestra is celebrating 125 years of musical excellence with an unforgettable Surprise Party–complete with a high-class soundtrack created by maestros like Haydn and Strauss. We’re guessing even the “Happy Birthday” song would sound just a bit more melodious with the help of the acoustics at Symphony Center. And don’t worry–they’ve got the noisemakers covered. $6-$57. 11 a.m. and 12:45 p.m. Nov. 21. Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago. (312) 294-3000.
“We’re going on a bear hunt. We’re going to catch a big one.” Chances are most moms and dads can recite the classic children’s book forward and backward … but what about in Spanish? We’re Going on a Bear Hunt! is offered in conjunction with Language Stars, folks who are definitely in the know about foreign language for the preschool set. Kids 3-6, with adult, build their Spanish vocabularies while role-playing the story outdoors at Heller Nature Center. Start practicing now: “Vamos a cazar un oso.” $8. 10-11 a.m. Nov. 11. 2821 Ridge Road, Highland Park. (847) 433-6901.