1. Light up
It’s (almost) the holiday season and you can get in the spirit at the Chicago Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony starring a 51-foot blue spruce donated by the Benavides family. A firework show and concert by Brian McKnight are part of the festivities.
Details: 6 p.m. Friday at Millennium Park, 201 E. Randolph St. Free / MAP
Find more fests: 2021 Festival Guide
Intricate artwork is the star of Mosaic Fest, where you can learn more about the fest’s namesake art and the Chicago Mosaic School as well as create your own mosaic.
Details: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday at The Chicago Mosaic School, 1127 W. Granville Ave. $35 for adults; $15 for kids 12-18; free for kids under 12 / MAP
Residents across the city share how water impacts their lives at The Lake and River from the perspective of neighborhoods. The event, produced by Wayfinding, is part of the 2021 Chicago Architectural Biennial and seeks to engage participants in conversations and activities.
Details: 1-3 p.m. Saturday at the Garfield Park Gold Dome Field House, 100 N. Central Park Ave. Free / MAP
At the Mystical and Magical Emporium tarot, tea leaf and loteria readers converge to commemorate the full moon.
Details: 6-10 p.m. Friday at the Pilsen Art House, 1756 W. 19th St. Free / MAP
Celebrate the season at the BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival as the Mag Mile is lit up with a million lights. Watch decorative floats, marching bands, musical performances, giant helium balloons and, of course, Santa Claus. A fireworks show caps off the event.
Parade: 5:30-7 p.m. Saturday along Michigan Avenue from Oak Street to Wacker Drive. Free / MAP
Festival: 4-8 p.m. Friday; 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday at Festival Lane in Pioneer Court, 401 N. Michigan Ave. Free / MAP
6. Pitch in
Lake View Citizens Council volunteers will have a day of habitat restoration at Where the Wild Things Grow. Participants will meet at Patagonia’s Mag Mile Store (48 E. Walton St.) and bike roughly 4.5 miles to the Bill Jarvis Migratory Bird Sanctuary. BYO bike and bike lock, thermos/camp mug, water and snacks and gardening gloves. Be sure to dress for the weather – event is held rain or shine.
At the Christmas Straw Ornament Workshop, you’ll create your own Lithuanian decoration using a flat straw applique technique.
Details: 2-3:30 p.m. Saturday at the Balzekas Museum of Lithuanian Culture, 6500 S. Pulaski Road. $25 / MAP
Comedian and actress Janeane Garofalo, a Saturday Night Live alum known for her roles in “Reality Bites,” the “Ben Stiller Show,” and “The Larry Sanders Show,” takes to the stage for a quartet of performances. Note: Proof of vaccination against COVID-19 and masks are required.
Details: Performances at 7 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday at The Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. $25-$48 / MAP
Unwind at Butterfly Haven Yoga with a rejuvenating class surrounded by more than 40 species of butterflies. Proof of negative COVID-19 test or vaccination required. BYO mask, water and yoga mat.
Details: 8:30-9:45 a.m. Saturdays through Dec. 18 at Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, 2430 N. Cannon Drive. $20 includes museum admission / MAP
Simply Serenades spotlights works by Johannes Brahms and Antonin Dvorak and features a world premier by Jonathan Bingham. Proof of negative COVID-19 test or vaccination and face mask required.
Details: 3 p.m. Sunday at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd. Skokie. $10-$75 / MAP
Events listed are subject to change. We recommend double-checking times and locations before you head out the door. Want to share your upcoming events with us for consideration in a future roundup? Send us an email.