With so many free things to do this month, there's a lot to be grateful for this November! As the holiday season officially begins, there's a long list of things that will become full: tummies, parks, and ice skating rinks are among them, but nothing is more full than Chicago's social calendar! 

Here are some of the best free things to do in Chicago this November.


Starts November 3

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Held every first and third Friday and Saturday of the month, Juicebox is a free series of performances that will get your child moving. During Juicebox, expect a fun hour of dancing, music and theatrics at the Chicago Cultural Center


Tuesday Funk
Tuesday, November 7

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Prose and pints make for a nice mix at this monthly series where five featured authors do reading of their own work, be it fiction, poetry or essays. The month of November will feature works from Parneshia Jones, Henri Harps, Gint Aras, Jeff Ruby and Britt Julious. 



Handmade Market Chicago
Saturday, November 12

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Support Local businesses at The Handmade Market, a craft fair for the sustainable and artisanal. Markets take place on select Saturdays from October to April at The Empty Bottle. Who knows? You may find a one-of-a-kind treasure for someone on your Christmas list. 


Magnificent Mile Lights Festival
November 17-18 

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Kicking off the holiday season is a memorable display of lights along the main thoroughfare in downtown Chicago. Witness how over a million lights illuminate Michigan Avenue during this family-friendly event, which features Mickey and Minnie Mouse as parade grand marshals.


Chicago's 104th Christmas Tree Lighting
Friday, November 17

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Catch the biggest tree light up the middle of the city at the 104th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting in Millennium Park. After the ceremony, head over to the McCormick Tribune ice skating rink, which opens to the public on the same day.


Starts November 17

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Bringing millions of visitors to the Daley Plaza each year, this open-air market with German origins has quickly become one of Chicago's favorite Christmastime traditions. Visit with Santa Claus, explore unique ornaments, fill up on soft pretzels and get your collector's mug filled with Gluhwein. 


McDonald's Thanksgiving Parade
Thursday, November 23

McDonald's Thanksgiving Parade

Chicago's annual Thanksgiving parade features inflatable animals, floats, marching bands, local celebrities and other performances. The parade starts at 8 a.m. and end at 11 a.m., leaving plenty of time to prepare your own holiday feast. 


Starts November 24

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Everyone is invited to witness Lincoln Park Zoo's lighting spectacular when Zoolights opens on November 24. While you're here, enjoy other winter activities, including ice carving demonstrations, photos with Santa Claus and carnival rides. The first 1,000 people get special glasses to view the lights. 


Caroling at Cloud Gate
Starts November 24

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Listen or sing along to some of the best holiday classics as Chicago's top choral groups serenade the crowd at the Cloud Gate sculpture in Millennium Park. 


Saturday, November 25

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Catch over 60 musicians perform in storefronts all over Wicker Park. Now in its fifth year, this pop-up music festival aims to showcase local artistry by putting the spotlight on local businesses. 

Which of these 10 free things to do in Chicago this November will you be checking out? Anything we missed? Tweet your thoughts at @ChooseChicago!