GET CRAFTY: Bypass the department stores and check out local galleries for handcrafted holiday gifts. River North's Vale Craft Gallery hosts a Fine Craft Holiday Show through January 3, featuring ceramics, glass, jewelry, paintings, sculpture, decorative objects and functional art by more than 100 local and national artists. 10:30AM-5:30 PM, free. The Evanston Art Center presents a Winter Arts and Crafts Expo through December 13, offering jewelry, ceramics, textiles, sculpture, prints, photos, paintings and sculpture from 100 regional artisans. 10AM-4PM, free.
OZ, EXPOSED: The long-running musical "Wicked" will wrap up in January, so now's your chance to see what happens behind the scenes. The "Behind the Emerald Curtain" tour takes you backstage at the Ford Center for the Performing Arts to peep props, costumes, a model of the set and film footage, plus you can take part in a discussion with cast members. Ask Elphaba why she's so awesome for us. 5PM, $25.
THE FUTURE IS NOW: The Museum of Contemporary Art's monthly Magical Musical Showcase highlights an emerging musician handpicked to perform by a local music club. This month the Empty Bottle gets to play starmaker for El Guincho, a hot DJ from Spain. 6:30PM, free.