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    The 10 Most Chicago Things To Do This Christmas

    The holidays are officially upon us. As we turn our focus from turkeys to snowflakes, here are the most Chicago things to do this December. After feedback from last year's article, I've increased the list from nine to ten. So without further adieu, here is how you can take in the food, culture, and tradition of Christmas in Chicago.

    1. Christkindlmarket

    christkindlmarket.com / Via christkindlmarket.com

    Every year vendors from Germany descend upon Daley Plaza and bring the spirit of Christmas in Germany to Chicagoland. Grab an authentic Bavarian pretzel and some Glühwein (a hot spiced wine) while you walk the various vendors. It's the perfect place for finding unique gifts like a handmade ornament, delicious German chocolates, or even a cuckoo clock. It's alright to get yourself a gift too.

    2. Ice Skating in Millenium Park

    cityofchicago.org / Via cityofchicago.org

    With the slew of supposed events involving The Bean highlighting your newsfeed, here's one that's the real deal - ice skating in front of The Bean. If you have your own ice skates, this qualifies as a 100% free thing to do in Chicago. If you're like most of us though, you'll be paying $12-14 to rent a pair of skates.

    3. Handel's Messiah Performed By Apollo Chorus

    apollochorus.org / Via apollochorus.org

    If you ask most Chicagoans what the first star in the Chicago flag is for, they'll likely tell you that it symbolizes the Great Chicago Fire. What they probably don't know, is that one year later the Apollo Chorus of Chicago was founded to raise the spirits of the city. Apollo has been singing the full Handel's Messiah every December since 1879. This year's performances are the evening of December 15th and the afternoon of December 16th. Whether you see it with family, friends, or a classy date, Apollo's performance of Messiah has been a Chicago tradition for over 135 years!

    4. The Walnut Room at Macy's

    chicago.eater.com / Via macysrestaurants.com

    Longtime Chicagoans will still tell you that the Walnut Room is at Marshall Fields. Since changing monikers, Macy's has continued on with this Chicago tradition that's been open since 1905. Although reservations filled up weeks ago, you can still get your name on the waiting list. Spend time outside with all the beautifully decorated Christmas windows. New for 2018 is a buffet option, which allows you to sample all of the different classic dishes, which of course includes Mrs. Hering's chicken pot pie.

    5. Christmas Bar Crawl

    eventbrite.com / Via eventbrite.com

    While the other events on this list are family friendly, a Christmas Bar Crawl is decidedly more adult in nature. There are several different events taking place across different weekends in various neighborhoods, but we recommend the Chi Life Santa Bar Crawl in River North. Be sure to keep your phone charged so that you can Uber or Lyft home. No driving your own sleigh after an event like this!

    6. The Nutcracker Performed By The Joffrey Ballet

    joffrey.org / Via joffrey.org

    In its 62nd year, the Joffrey Ballet is one of the most well renowned ballet companies in the world. Calling Chicago home since 1995, no production is as well known as their annual performance of Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker. It's just not Christmas until you experience The Dance of The Sugar Plum Fairy.

    7. Zoolights at Lincoln Park Zoo

    lpzoo.org / Via lpzoo.org

    What shows it's Christmastime more than thousands and thousands of tiny light bulbs? Clark Griswold would be envious of the annual light display at the Lincoln Park Zoo. While Zoolights is free, there are several events taking place throughout the holidays that are worth checking out including a holiday market and a beer festival.

    8. Caroling at The Bean

    cityofchicago.org / Via cityofchicago.org

    No matter how much the city of Chicago wants to call this Caroling at Cloud Gate, no one knows a real Chicagoan who has ever referred to the Bean as "Cloud Gate". Join in for carols the following dates:

    Friday, December 7: Chicago Chamber Choir

    Wednesday, December 12: The King's Singers, Apollo Chorus of Chicago and ChiArts: The Chicago High School for the Arts, in collaboration with Harris Theater

    Friday, December 14: Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus

    9. The Music Box Theatre White Christmas / It's a Wonderful Life Double Feature

    musicboxtheatre.com / Via musicboxtheatre.com

    Few of Chicago's movie theaters are as iconic as the Music Box Theatre. Now in its 35th year, the Music Box holiday double feature of White Christmas and It's a Wonderful Life. Santa Claus himself leads the audience in singing Christmas carols accompanied by the Music Box's own organist. For those who have a little less holiday spirit, you can opt to see just one of the films...but who wants to be a grinch?

    10. Hop on the Polar Express

    chicagothepolarexpressride.com / Via chicagothepolarexpressride.com

    Head on down to Union Station and find the magic of the season on rails. A great family experience that puts you and your family in to the pages of the classic holiday book. Wearing pajamas is strongly encouraged and a cup of hot chocolate will help keep you warm on these December trips.

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