Chicago Like a Local Blog

Unique perspectives on the city from the people who live here.

Category - Family

Weekend Alert: December 19-21

Holiday Thorne Rooms

The holidays are here! It's the cheeriest time of the year in Chicago, and there's plenty to do to get in the spirit. This is a time to be with friends and family, and we've got a list of activities that everyone will enjoy.

The Nutcracker: Four Takes on a Holiday Classic


Since its 1892 adapted premiere in St. Petersburg, Russia - choreographed by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov, with a score by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky - E.T.A. Hoffman's story "The Nutcracker and the Mouse King" has been enchanting audiences worldwide. With new versions of the classic appearing every year, here are four different Nutcrackers on stage this holiday season, each bringing to life the magic of Christmas through the story of Clara and her nutcracker that springs to life

Three Interesting Places to Find Santa in Chicago

Santa with Penguins - Shedd - Blog

Santa Claus is quite the man about town this season, making appearances where you'd least expect. Whether you've been naughty or nice, now is the time to find the man in red to tell him what's on your holiday wish list. Here are three offbeat places to spot Santa in Chicago.

12 Tips for Making the Most of Lincoln Park Zoo's Annual ZooLights Festival


Bundle up and head over to Lincoln Park Zoo, where more than two million twinkling lights and all of your animal friends are waiting to celebrate winter with you and your family at the annual ZooLights festival. There is nothing quite like walking around the zoo on a crisp winter night, serenaded by the pretty holiday lights - especially if there is a carpet of just-fallen snow. ZooLights flips on the switches Friday-Sunday night through Dec. 12, then

Weekend Alert: December 5-7

The Nutcracker

'Tis the holiday season! Chicago's in full winter festivities mode, and we've got a selection of some great events to keep in mind when planning your weekends. Whether it's shopping local all over the city; seeing the Joffrey Ballet's timeless The Nutcracker; feasting at Tasting Table's Open Market; caroling at Cloud Gate; or celebrating the King of Pop's birthday, an adventure awaits.  

Celebrate the Holidays at American Girl Place Chicago

American Girl Place - Chicago

For the past few years, the day before Christmas, I take two of the sweetest girls I know - my daughter and her BFF - to American Girl Place, where we have brunch and enjoy the holiday decor. It's one of my 5-year-old daughter's favorite spots in the city, and one of her favorite seasonal activities. If you're looking to create a special holiday memory with your special American girl, take her and her favorite dolly to American Girl Chicago, where a sweet cafe, special

10 Reasons to Visit Chicago Before 2015

Winter Chicago

There's no place on Earth that celebrates the holidays quite like Chicago does. Simply strolling through downtown and our neighborhoods is enough indication of Chicago's joyous holiday spirit. But festivities abound, from special holiday exhibitions to annual holiday traditions such as ZooLights or The Joffrey Ballet's The Nutcracker, so your schedule will always be full.

If you've ever needed a reason to experience Chicago's magical winter celebrations, here are 10 of them for you


Thanksgiving Parade

From all of us at Choose Chicago, we wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Experience Chicago: Give Your Loved Ones Outside-the-Box Presents This Holiday Season

Shedd Aquarium

What do you get the person in your life who has everything for the holidays? Or the kid in your life who already has a toybox packed with toys? Consider gifting a unique Chicago experience! Here are seven meaningful gift ideas that will bring the best of Chicago into the life of your loved one. 

Celebrate the Holidays at the Art Institute of Chicago

Art Institute

Ring in the holiday season at the Art Institute of Chicago, our city's historic, world-class, and above all, beloved art museum. From watching the iconic lions get dressed in their seasonal best to making your own art-inspired gingerbread house, a visit to the Art Institute during the holidays is a must! Here are five special things to do at the Art Institute this holiday season, plus a few insider tips.  

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