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Chicago is dazzling this holiday season! From special holiday exhibitions at museums to popular annual traditions like the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival and the Daley Plaza Christmas Tree lighting ceremony to celebrations of Hanukkah and Kwanzaa, there is no better place to experience the joy and magic of the holiday season than Visitors to the city are invited to make their first stop the Chicago Office of Tourism's 78 East Washington Street Chicago is home to hundreds of hotels to suit any taste or price point, many of which offer special holiday packages. For more information on visiting this holiday season, or to book accommodations, visit or call 877-CHICAGO. A listing of highlights of holiday events and hotel packages in this November and December follows: Michigan Avenue: The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival

Saturday, November 22

Admission Free!

This festive lighting of more than one million lights along North Michigan Avenue is followed by a spectacular fireworks show over the Chicago River. Enjoy a host of holiday experiences and shopping along The Magnificent Mile in Chicago throughout the holiday season. Visit for holiday offers and discounts, as well as a schedule of events for the day of the festival!


Daley Plaza: Christkindlmarket Chicago

Thursday, November 27 through Wednesday, December 24

Opens daily 11am; Closing hours Sunday through Thursday 8pm; Friday and Saturday 9pm

Admission Free!

Watch as Daley Plaza is transformed into a little piece of Germany, known as the Christkindlmarket Chicago. At the Plaza, visitors will find Chicago's iconic Picasso sculpture surrounded by red and white crested huts glowing with warmth and overflowing with curios. Nutcrackers, cuckoo-clocks, beer steins, European chocolates, toys, jewelry, clothing and a wide variety of holiday ornaments are just a few of the items for sale from more than 50 vendor booths.


Daley Plaza: Santa Clause House

Thursday, November 27 through Wednesday, December 24

Opens daily at 11am; Closing hours vary

Admission Free!

Santa Claus and crew have setup shop in the heart of downtown Chicago. Be sure to ask about his naughty or nice list after you snap a souvenir photo and give him your wish list. Note: Santa takes a break from 3-4pm daily. 


Daley Plaza: Chicago Christmas Tree Lighting

Tuesday, December 2

12 noon - Program; 12:30pm - Tree Lighting 

Admission Free!

Enjoy the magical moment when the city's official Christmas Tree is lit for the season. Following a brief musical program, Mayor Richard M. Daley, Santa Claus and special guests including actress Keri Russell will flip the switch to reveal a newly decorated 80 foot tree to launch the Christmas season in the city. The actress has teamed up with Underwriters Laboratories (UL) which is providing 9,000 red, green and white energy-saving LED (light-emitting diode) light bulbs 


Millennium Park: Caroling at Cloud Gate

Fridays, November 28 through December 19

6pm Admission Free!

Chicago's holiday tradition returns on Friday nights throughout the holiday season. Chicagoans and visitors are invited to hear the beautiful
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