8 Things to Do Before Thanksgiving in Chicago - NBC Chicago
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8 Things to Do Before Thanksgiving in Chicago

Whether you want to get in the holiday spirit or just enjoy a night out, we've got you covered!

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    8 Things to Do Before Thanksgiving in Chicago
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    Gimmie Lights |
    The 19th annual Magnificent Mile Lights Festival kicked off Saturday morning along Michigan Avenue, featuring Mickey Mouse and company, American Idol finalist Crystal Bowersox, and fireworks along the river. Check out photos from the event!

    Whether you want to get in the holiday spirit or just enjoy a night out, there's no shortage of fun things to do in Chicago this weekend and before the Turkey Day. 

    Here's our guide to things to do: 

    Chicago Christmas Tree Lighting

    Join the annual tree lighting on its 106th year with the entire family. The 55-foot blue spruce from Elgin that was donated by a local family was chosen among 44 submissions by the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events this year. On Nov. 22 at 6 p.m., head to Millennium Park Wrigley Square on Michigan Ave and Randolph St. The tree will be up until Jan. 6, 2020. 

    BMO Harris Magnificent Mile Lights Festival

    Kick off the holiday season with the BMO lights festival on Friday and Saturday. Head to the Pioneer Court between the Chicago River and Upper Michigan Avenue in the Magnificent Mile to enjoy this free two-day event starting at 4 p.m. There will be a BMO Harris kids’ zone and free treats. Don’t forget a picture with Santa Claus! 

    Frosty’s A Christmas Pop-Up Bar

    Take a break and head to the Frosty’s A Christmas pop-up bar between 4 p.m. and 4 a.m. to enjoy a holiday spirit. There will be four bars, three levels and two floors available. Ticket prices begin at $15 for general admission. There is also a $112.50 VIP bottle service option. The bar will be open from Nov. 22 until Jan. 5, but will be closed on Nov. 25, 26, Thanksgiving Day, Dec. 25, and Jan. 1. It will be open on Dec. 31st with a special NYE package. Must be 21+. 

    Chicago Old Fashioned Fest

    This new open-bar whiskey cocktail festival will feature a variety of cocktails, live music and light eats on Saturday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. The festival is located at Penthouse 111 Unit 2 on 111 W Jackson Blvd. Tickets range from $6 per beer plus fees to $40 for general admission from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. and $50 for VIP admission from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. For additional information and packages, head to Eventbrite.com. Must be 21+. 

    Winter Pizza & Beer Tour

    Bundle up and experience a tour of four house-brewed beers at one of Chicago’s premiere pizza spots. Your guided tour will then take you to choose two more beers to try at the next spot and will end at Pizzeria Uno’s landmark location for a slice and choice of one more beer. Tickets to the three-hour tour range from $34 to $42.50 and it will run from Nov. 22 until Feb. 1, 2020 on weekends. More information available on goldstar.com

    A Christmas Carol at Goodman Theater

    If you prefer to stay indoors this weekend, enjoy a performance of Charles Dicken’s classic A Christmas Carol at the Goodman Theater. The performances will run from Nov. 22 until Dec. 29. Each show last approximately two hours with one intermission. Tickets on Nov. 22 start at $40 and on Nov. 23 at $50. On Sunday Nov. 24, tickets will be $40 for the 2 p.m. performance and $50 for the 6:30 p.m. performance. You can purchase your tickets at goodmantheatre.com.  

    Turkey Tot Trot at Morgan Park SC

    Bring your kids to Morgan Park Sports Center Park on 11505 S. Western Ave. for fun stationed activities that include jumping, rolling and throwing at the park’s gymnasium. There is a fee of $10 and the event is for children between 1 and a half years old and 6 years old. Each child will receive a number to be pinned on their chest and a record keeping form. The event runs from 11 a.m. to noon on Nov. 27. For more information, head to chicagoparkdistrict.com

    2019 Chicago Thanksgiving Parade

    Wake up early and head to the Thanksgiving parade with the entire family Thursday Nov. 28 from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. The parade will take place on State Street from Ida B. Wells Drive to Randolph Street. It is the parade’s 86th year and this 2019, it will feature actors Chris Sullivan and Miguel Cervantes as well as hundreds of talented performers. This is a free event.

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