Bundle up and head over to Lincoln Park Zoo, where more than 2 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.

Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday night through Dec. 11, and every night beginning Dec. 16 through January 1 (excluding Dec. 24 – 25), the zoo is open  from 10am - 9pm,  with special ZooLights activities kicking off at 5 pm. 

Santa will be hanging out in the lion house, and Edison the Reindeer will be wandering around near the carousel - be on the lookout for his flashing red nose. The light show, located at the center of the zoo, near the food court, is a must see: my kids always love to see the lights "dance" to our favorite holiday tunes. Traditional zoo fare is met with holiday treats: grab a spiced wine, hot cider or cocoa to keep your hands and your tummies warm.   Don't forget to pick up a pair of magic glasses (available at the zoo's main entrance) so you can see the lights through special 3D lenses.

Be sure to check out the other winter offerings this year at the Lincoln Park Zoo. Yes, baby, it's cold outside! But there is still so much fun to be had at the zoo - from breakfast with the lions and tigers to a sleepover with the giant apes.