Kick Off The Holiday Season at These Local Fairs & Festivals

game fairs

Get all your holiday shopping done at these local annual fairs and festivals. From games to antiques, toys to jewelry, there’s something for everyone on your list!

Chicago Toy & Game Fair: The Chicago Toy and Game Fair is the largest toy and game fair in the U.S. open to the public, offering the whole family a weekend jam-packed with fun-filled discovery, interactive events, playful contests and awe-inspiring exhibitions. Fair attendees will have the opportunity to explore the booths of more than 100 toy and game exhibitors, transforming Navy Pier’s Festival Hall into a playful extravaganza of holiday fun for people of all ages. The Fair opens from 10am – 6pm on Saturday, November 21st and Sunday 10am – 5pm on November 22nd. A special preview hour is available for media and trade attendees on both days, starting at 9am. Tickets are $10 adult (ages 13+), and $5 per child aged 3 to 12. Children under 3 are free.

Magnificent Mile Lights Festival: The stretch of Michigan Avenue between Wacker Drive and Oak Street, known as The Magnificent Mile, turns into a winter wonderland every holiday season. On the Saturday before each Thanksgiving, the “Mag Mile’s” towering hotels and shops light up in glorious fashion, with more than one million lights adorning 200 trees! Plus a parade and a fireworks show over the majestic Chicago River end the night’s festivities. The BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival is the perfect opportunity to get you in the holiday spirit. Michigan Avenue shuts down traffic so you and your loved ones can roam freely on the streets and pick the perfect perch to watch the spectacular parade. Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse act as the masters of ceremonies on the head float, along with their Disney friends. Kids will love the giant, floating balloons. Marching bands, twirling dancers, singers and the elaborate floats create an unforgettable parade. Take a moment to see street entertainers and celebrities as you stroll past decorative windows, and shop to your heart’s content, thanks to extended shopping hours. November 21.

Randolph Street Holiday Market: Get your holiday shopping off to the right start with gifts in all price ranges, from thrifty to extravagant. You will discover fabulous keepsakes from embroidered hankies to estate jewelry. Timeless antiques and modern treasures including vintage and indie fashion, jewelry, art, decorative objects, house wares, and more will make this holiday a memorable experience for gift givers of all ages. Free Parking & Free Gift Wrapping… Holiday shopping has never been easier. Memorable and exciting treasures in all price ranges await you at the Randolph Street Holiday Market! November 21 & 22, November 28 & 29, December 12 & 13. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Plumbers Hall, 1340 W. Washington. General admission tickets are $8 pre-purchased, $10 at the gate. Kids under 12 are free.

Christkindlmarket: One of the most timeless Christmas celebrations takes place within the quaint Main Market Square of Nuremberg, Germany. The Christmas Market is a lively and bustling village of stalls in which more than two million come to enjoy the holiday spirit. Thanks to Chicago’s international communities, you can enjoy the unique villages of Christkindlmarket right in the Loop, now in its 20th season! November 20 – December 24.

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