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Exciting November 2023 Happenings in Chicago

Hello, November in Chicago! After the Halloween excitement, it’s time to gear up for the upcoming holiday season. From enchanting Christmas light displays to the opening of Christkindlmarket in Daley Plaza and Wrigleyville, the Windy City is all set to embrace the festive spirit. Consider taking a leisurely skate at the Maggie Daley Ice Skating Ribbon or exploring the city’s remarkable museums as the temperatures drop. Bid farewell to autumn in Chicago with our curated list of the best things to do this November!


Highlighted November 2023 Events:


Chicago Thanksgiving Parade

Why settle for watching a parade on TV when you can experience the magic in person right here in Chicago? The Chicago Thanksgiving Parade features giant cartoon-character balloons, lively marching bands, and dancers as it weaves its way down State Street, stretching from Ida B. Wells Drive to Randolph Street. The parade wraps up by 11 am, leaving you with ample time to return home and join the Thanksgiving feast preparations.

Winterland at Gallagher Way

While you may not get the chance to pitch at Wrigley Field, you can enjoy a unique winter experience within the iconic baseball stadium. Winterland at Gallagher Way offers a wide range of festive attractions, including the 12,000-square-foot Gallagher Ice Rink. Lace up your skates, take a spin on the ice, and explore on-field games, carnival rides, an ice slide, and even ice bumper cars. Warm up at The Lodge, an après-ski style pop-up bar complete with cozy firepits.


Disney100: The Exhibition

Calling all Disney enthusiasts! A brand-new exhibition highlighting Disney’s rich history is coming to the 35,000-square-foot Exhibition Hub Art Center in Lincoln Park on November 18, coinciding with the debut of Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse in 1928. Explore 14 interactive installations and discover over 250 rare artifacts and memorabilia from various Disney franchises, including Marvel Studios and Pixar. Don’t miss the opportunity to purchase exclusive merchandise and snap photos in front of captivating backdrops.


The Chicago Botanic Garden hosts the annual Lightscape event, a breathtaking display of holiday lights that sells out quickly. Walk along the illuminated path and immerse yourself in dazzling installations, including a 110-foot tunnel adorned with 100,000 lights and singing holiday trees. This year, experience new works by international artists, such as the mesmerizing Sea of Light with thousands of LED light balls dancing to a custom soundtrack.


Daley Plaza welcomes the iconic German-inspired Christkindlmarket, offering a month of festive celebrations in the Loop. Explore stalls brimming with handmade gifts, savor German cuisine, and sip on hot beverages to keep warm as you soak in the holiday spirit. Make sure to try spiced glühwein, a German hot wine best enjoyed in the market’s famous souvenir mugs.

Ice Skating at Maggie Daley Park

Nestled in the heart of downtown Chicago, the Skating Ribbon at Maggie Daley Park offers a one-of-a-kind winter experience. Skate along the winding ice-covered path with the city’s stunning skyline as your backdrop. Be sure to make reservations in advance, as the rink tends to fill up quickly. Admission to the Skating Ribbon is free on weekdays and for 11 am sessions on weekends, with skate rentals available for a fee. The Ribbon remains open through March, even on holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas.



For one of the city’s most impressive holiday light displays, head to Lincoln Park Zoo, where the annual ZooLights transforms the park with millions of LED bulbs. While the animals stay cozy indoors, visitors can wander through the park, admire the displays, and participate in various holiday activities. This year, expect new displays and interactive programs, along with hot beverages and snacks available throughout the park. Admission prices vary, with some nights offering free entry.


Magnificent Mile Lights Festival

The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival, happening the night after Christkindlmarket opens, marks the official start of the holiday season in Chicago. As the clock strikes 5:30 pm, watch as more than 200 trees along Michigan Avenue light up with festive sparkle. Enjoy the parade featuring floats, giant helium balloons, marching bands, and celebrities, with Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse serving as Grand Marshals. Arrive early to explore activities along Michigan Avenue and snap a photo with Santa.


Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Presents The Greatest Show On Earth

The circus is coming to town from November 3-5 with a reimagined version of The Greatest Show on Earth. While this tour doesn’t feature animals, it offers musical performances, aerial artistry, modern comedy, and never-before-seen acts, including highwire stunts, trapeze, bicycles, and more. Don’t miss performances by Wesley Williams and the Lopez Family, who will push the boundaries of circus artistry.


Whiskies of the World

Whiskey enthusiasts, don’t miss the opportunity to sample premier whiskeys from around the globe at the Whiskies of the World exhibition. With over 100 spirits to savor, including renowned brands like Bulleit, Johnnie Walker, and Westward Whiskey, this event promises a delightful tasting experience. General admission grants you access to unlimited whiskey pours, delectable food pairings, and a souvenir tasting glass. Consider upgrading to masterclasses or VIP passes for additional perks.


These are just a few of the exciting events and experiences awaiting you in Chicago this November. Stay tuned for more updates on our website, and remember, we’re here to help you find your dream home in the Windy City. Contact us for all your real estate needs!


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