As we approach the end of 2018, the surreal feeling of panic sets it, as yet another year has came and went. However, the last three months of the year are, by far, the most festive and the most fun. Three major holidays, back-to-back, make for an exciting end to the year, and a great time to make memories! Despite a change in weather, there’s still so much to do and so much to see, and Chicago is just the place for it all! Check out these 10 festive activities in Chicago to do this holiday season.
1. Haunted Segway Tour
Starting off the list with a Halloween-inspired activity, the city of Chicago offers a haunted Segway tour. A costumed guide will lead you through the city, via Segway, sharing the most infamous, eerie stories and sites involving death, murder, ghosts, and gangsters. This moonlit tour lasts about two hours, and witnessing incredible views of the city’s landscapes lit up during the spookiest time of the year can make for great fun. The tour is commonly reviewed as not as ‘haunted’ as expected, making this the perfect activity for younger participants!
2. Graceland Cemetery
Touching on another Halloween activity, what’s more spooky than a cemetery? Located on Clark St., the massive burial grounds is one of Chicago’s oldest cemeteries, housing many famous Chicagoans. Although well-kept and quite serene, numerous ghost spottings have been reported on the grounds. A young girl in outdated clothes has been spotted near the grave of Inez Clark, as well as a young girl sitting under a tree, reading in daylight. A monument of Dexter Graves is also known to give its viewers quite the chills as one of the grounds’ spookiest statue, being referred to as “Statues of Death”.
3. Lincoln Park
Home of the famous Lincoln Park Zoo, Lincoln Park has plenty of colorful foliage to awe at this fall. Leaf peeping is a fall-favorite, watching the green turn to beautiful colors of amber, mustard, and burnt orange. With plenty of other amenities, Lincoln Park is one of the festive activities in Chicago that is the perfect place to stroll with friends, with a warm Pumpkin Spiced Latte or spiced apple cider in hand.
4. Halloween Goes Hollywood
Looking for a fun Halloween bash to show off your creative costume and dance the night away? Chicago’s Hard Rock Cafe hosts Halloween Goes Hollywood, a night filled with music, rockstars, yummy bites, and lucious drinks. Enjoy the Hard Rock’s vast music memorabilia, while a live DJ plays the hottest hits. Come dressed as your favorite rock star, or get your girl gang together and dress as your favorite group! Don’t miss out on the fun taking place on October 27th, beginning at 10 p.m. This event is 21+.
5. 2018 Turkey Crawl
One of America’s most beloved holidays comes next: Thanksgiving. Food, beer, and football come to mind for most celebrators. Apart from the glorious feast of food, most 21+ year olds take part in more celebratory aspects: Black Wednesday. A day filled with booze, beer, and even more booze. The festive activities in Chicago are just the place to take part! Located in the city’s famous Wrigleyville, the annual Turkey Crawl, starting on November 21st at 7 p.m., will take you through some of Wrigleyville’s best bars, including admissions, a dinner buffet, drink specials, and more! Warm up to turkey day, and eat, drink and enjoy!
6. Turkey Trot Chicago
Looking to burn some extra calories before the commencement of feasting on Thanksgiving Day? Turkey Day Run Chicago has got you covered! As one of Chicago’s greatest Thanksgiving traditions, this 5K/8K on Thanksgiving Day is loaded with pre and post-race activities like corn hole, turkey bowling, and sipping on warm apple cider. Gather all the turkeys in your family and sport your best turkey/thanksgiving costumes to really get in the spirit!
7. The 25th Annual Magnificent Mile Lights Festival 2018
Halloween is fun, and Thanksgiving leaves our bellies full, but there’s nothing quite like the feeling of Christmas time in the city. The festive activities in Chicago are the perfect place to bring in the most wonderful time of the year. The annual Magnificent Mile Lights Festival is the unofficial start to the holiday season. The festival offers family-friendly attractions, a holiday parade, fireworks, and so much more. Don’t miss the tree lighting ceremony on the same day, where Millennium Park’s 69-foot-Christmas tree is lit for the season! With special appearances by Santa and Mrs. Claus, this event is a sure-fire way to boost your holiday spirit and keep you coming back for years to come.
A European-inspired Chriskindlemarket brings the heritage of Germany to Chicago with these festive activities in Chicago. Being Chicago’s largest open-air Christmas festival, it is hard to resist the European inspired trinket shops, food stands, and spiced wine. With the city’s lights and the hustle and bustle of the market, this cozy festival is the perfect way to bring in the holidays.
9. Ice Skating in Millennium Park
Chicago is most famous for it’s huge, silver, bean-shaped figure; quite appropriately named the Bean, located in Millennium Park. Christmas time is the most magical time of year in this park, since it welcomes guests upon guests to ice skate on McCormicks Tribune Ice Rink, located right in front of the Bean. Starting on November 18th, skating is free to the public, and skate rentals are also available. The rink is almost always packed, so dedicating a whole day to the beautiful city around the holidays is your best bet. A picture-perfect moment is awaiting.
10. Lincoln Park’s ZooLights
In more Christmas spirit, Lincoln Park’s ZooLights brings the best of the holidays to the city. Thousands of lights illuminate the park, including light installations and sculptures. With many holiday amenities including pictures with Santa, carousel rides, and ice skating, this holiday festivity will really make your heart cozy with the most wonderful time of the year.