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Tour-goers will be the first to see the transformation of the former First Baptist Church sanctuary into an opulent great hall decorated in the tradition of Downton Abbey, the famous PBS series. Guests will enjoy complimentary sparkling cider as they explore the hall, now a new event center. They will be invited to pose for selfies with life-size cut-outs of Lady Mary and other favorites from the TV show. Six private homes decorated in the Downton-style will be open to the public. Other attractions will be Christmas markets, a cookie walk and live Downton music. All tour-goers are eligible for prize drawings for Downton collectibles.
Don't miss these two beautifully decorated Deere family mansions during the holiday season. The 19th Century Christmas features the interiors of the homes decorated for the holidays; along with living-history volunteers, Choir performances, Santa Claus, music, and make-and-take activities for the children. These homes once belonged to the John Deere family and are now operated by the William Butterworth Memorial Trust. Open noon to 5 p.m. Free admission.
2nd Annual Easter Egg Hunt sponsored by Safe House Animal Rescue. Over 20,000+ Easter Eggs. A Visit with the Easter Bunny. All eggs filled with Candy, toys, with a possibility of larger prizes. Raffle Baskets, Baked Goods. Hunt free for all, age divided. Lunch will also be provided for small fee. Hunt starts at Noon, Pictures with the Easter Bunny and kids crafts starts at 11am, Face Painting, Games, Cake Hop, Bake Sale all start following the Egg Hunt games cost $1 a game.
The show is a family tradition for many, including some attending their 40th Festival! Journey with the all-age cast as they tell of the “wee” folk’s good works for man and nature, outsmart the Snotgurgle troll and find the true meaning of this giving season. The show is about 90 minutes, no intermission. Meet the gnome cast after the show, visit the "Gnomemade" gift shop, enjoy live music and refreshments in the lobby. Get your gnome cap, and bring it back each year to get a free tassel sewn onto it.
One of central Illinois largest and most spectacular light shows! Our unique venue offers viewing from the high school bleachers all the way to the bluffs along the Illinois & Fox Rivers either on shore or in your boat. 9pm show time.
Open 5-9pm nightly. 1.8 miles of Holiday Light Displays. Santa visits Dec. 9-10-11; Dec. 18-19-20 5:30-8:30pm. Included in admission evenings of Santa visits, are crafts, games, hot cocoa and cookies. Don't forget your camera. Admission is $10.00 per car. Gift Certificates available.
The avenue's most fashionable address features an unprecedented shopping experience at Bloomingdale's flagship store, along with 70 fine shops and restaurants. Enjoy six levels of spectacular shopping at retailers like Coach, Gucci, Maxmara, and Mark Shale.
Perhaps the best loved holiday story of all time, the Rialto's adaptation of Dickens’ classic is particularly suited to children, and features a magnificent score by Jule Styne, the composer of Broadway’s immortal Peter Pan, Gypsy and Funny Girl. All the joy, sentiment and meaning are here, without being too scary for young audiences.
Opera In Focus, a rod-puppet production, will perform acts from "La Boheme" and "White Christmas Interlude". 4pm showtime on Wednesdays and 1:30pm showtime on Saturdays. Reservations required.
The Mount Carroll Chamber of Commerce presents “A Collectible Christmas”. A variety of antique & otherwise collectibles will be featured throughout participating businesses and in the homes featured on the tour of homes. The tour of homes will run from 10am – 4pm and the tickets can be purchased at Market Street Commons located at the corner of Market & Main Streets in the heart of downtown Mt Carroll. At 4pm there will be music & snacks at the courtyard bandstand following by the lighting of the Christmas Tree at 5pm. Many other activities will take place that day so check out the website for the full details.
Swing into Christmas with this fun holiday variety show guaranteed to entertain the whole family! Beautiful singing, spectacular dancing and rib tickling comedy brought to you by an all-star cast of talented performers led by our own John Stephens and Therese Kincade. It’s all wrapped up in a beautiful package with lots of favorites like White Christmas, O Holy Night, This Christmas, Let It Snow, Jingle Bells and a stunning finale about the true meaning of Christmas. A Swingin’ Little Christmas will keep you in the holiday spirit all winter long!
Step back in time a few years and enjoy clean, old-fashioned outdoor fun at Abbey Farms. Unique – no haunting themes, no electronic games, no gimmicks, just clean old-fashioned outdoor fun for everyone. Enjoy three seasons of fun; fresh produce in summer, Pumpkin Daze in fall and U-pick Christmas trees in winter. Shop their fresh bakery goods, cider donuts, and other seasonal delights. Looking for a unique venue for that special occasion? Visit their new rustic-chic barn, the Nagel Emporium.
Celebrate the holidays at Nicholas Conservatory & Gardens. Come see sparkling holiday lights and beautiful floral displays inside the warm tropical conservatory. Outdoor grounds are also decorated for the season.
Two full-sized rinks are open for year-round skating. All Seasons also offers a game room, ballet room, pro shop and party room.
Celebrate the season at Allerton! Come out anytime to shop for gifts, enjoy tours of the decorated Mansion, and relax with friends over lunch. New this year, the Showcase will feature an application process for our 20+ artisans and businesses, selling their unique products, handcrafted wares, and baked goods. Tours of the historic Mansion will be held on the hour from 10am-3pm (no registration necessary) and a warm lunch buffet will be available at 11:30am or 1:30pm (with advanced ticket purchase). End the memorable day with a carriage ride around the Estate! There's a reason why this incredible estate is listed as one of the Seven Wonders of Illinois, and there is not doubt it becomes even more wondrous during the holidays!
Located at the famous Water Tower Place, you'll find the store girls of all ages want to visit. They come from far and near to experience the magic that is American Girl Place Chicago—featuring specialty shops, private dining and, of course, lovable dolls. The only destination of its kind in the world for girls and their families.
For over 160 years this early morning (6:30 a.m.) service has been held at Augustana Lutheran Church. The service is held in a setting similar to that used by the Swedish congregation in 1870. The choir sings a Swedish anthem and the service is in English. Candles in the pews, altar and windows illuminate the sanctuary. Service begins at 6:30am.
Andover and Andover Lake Park will glow with decorations. Stroll on walkways marked by luminaries or ride in a horse-drawn wagon. Soup supper and Christmas goodies, refreshments & kids crafts at the American Legion Building from 5pm to 7pm. Visit candle-lit Jenny Lind Chapel and hear live Christmas music from 6pm to 8pm.
The historic landmark Auditorium Theatre, an architectural masterpiece designed by Dankmar Adler and Louis Sullivan, opened in 1889. The Auditorium, which regularly hosts live performances, is renowned for its amazing acoustics.
One of the largest free outdoor holiday light displays in Northern Illinois, the Festival of Lights, returns with dazzling displays that will delight both adults and children. Enjoy the magic! This year features a 20’ tall “singing” Christmas tree. This signature winter event is a drive-through of more than one mile of spectacular lighted displays, many of which are animated, and are illuminated by tens of thousands of bulbs. Staged at Aurora's gem, Phillips Park, the festival will be open from 5 - 9 pm Sundays through Thursdays and 5 - 10 pm Fridays and Saturdays. Presented by the Aurora Rotary Club in partnership with the City of Aurora, Free: donations encouraged.
Away in the Basement takes us back to 1959 and the day of the Sunday School Christmas Program. In the midst of holiday preparations, the ladies are creating their own memories from Christmases past and present. As the children rehearse up in the sanctuary, several of the ladies of the kitchen are finishing up the treat bags while the others put the final touches on the nativity pieces. Mending old bathrobe costumes and discussing who’s going to play the various roles, little do the ladies know what surprises are in store for them. Known for their hilarious antics and subtle charm, they are once again called upon to step in and save the day!
Take in all the energy and entertainment available through the abounding opportunities at Ball Fore Family Entertainment Center! Mundane does not exist within the vast array of choices distributed throughout this park. Treat yourself, family, friends, or colleagues to an interactive day at the park. Ball Fore Family Entertainment Center has something for everyone including eight batting cages, an eighteen hole miniature golf course, driving range, sand volleyball pit, archery range, basketball, bags sets, playground, picnic area and concessions.
The Bank of America Theatre opened in 1906 originally as the Majestic Theatre in downtown Chicago. The theater has gone through a couple of different name changes including recently the LaSalle Bank Theatre, and the Sam Shubert Theatre before that. The Bank of America Theatre box office has been host to many traveling Broadway shows and events since it's most recent renovation in 2006.