The holidays are always a great time to take in a show. However, while many local performances are sold out, we found some with seats still available (Peter Pan, the Gift of the Magi) but I encourage you to ask fast. It’s also the perfect time to partake in some longstanding North Shore traditions including Glenview’s Holiday Figure Skating Exhibition and the Wonderland Express at the Botanic Garden. Some other interesting and new events include an afternoon tea at the Peckish Pig (yum) and European Cabaret Night at 210. There’s also a free holiday concert at the Chalet for those not ready to commit and for those looking to burn a few holiday calories consider a Winter Woods night hike or Fairy Tale Skate!  Whatever strikes your fancy, enjoy and Happy Holidays!


Holiday Figure Skating Exhibition
Dec. 22: 5 – 7:50 pm
Glenview Ice Center, 1851 Landwehr Rd., Glenview 

The Glenview Ice Center kicks off the 2017 Winter Carnival with a free Holiday Figure Skating Exhibition! Watch soloists, synchronized skating teams and Glenview Skate School skaters showcase their talents. Stay for a free Family Skate Night following the exhibition. For more info, click here.


Winter Woods Night Hike
Dec. 22: 6:30 – 8 pm
Ryerson Welcome Center, 21950 North Riverwoods Rd., Riverwoods 

Discover the magic of a winter woods at night while learning the survival strategies of our native wildlife. An indoor presentation will be followed by a walk on a candlelit path. Please dress for the weather and wear warm, sturdy boots, portions of the program will be held outdoors. Recommended for ages 8+. Resident: $5; NR: $7. For more info, click here.


Gift of the Magi
Dec. 22 & 23: 7 pm
Fleetwood-Jourdain Theatre, 927 Noyes St., Evanston 

This is a modern, heartwarming, family holiday play with music that tells the story of Della and her husband, Jim, who desperately want to buy the perfect Christmas gifts for each other, but living paycheck to paycheck while pursuing each of their artistic dreams has left no extra cash for expensive presents. It turns out that Jim and Della’s love for one another reaches far beyond monetary constraints and material possessions in this tenderly told story about devotion and what’s truly important–a lesson you’re never too young or old to learn. Tickets: $10; to purchase click here.


Fairy Tale Try It Skate
Dec. 23: 10 am – 12 pm
Robert Crown Center, 1701 Main St., Evanston 

The perfect opportunity to learn the basics of skating. First time skaters are encouraged to participate. You will meet and skate with Fairy Tale characters such as Tinkerbell, Cinderella, Elsa and Ariel. Skaters will be divided by ages. Admission is free, skate rentals available for $3. For more info: 847-448-8258.


Peter Pan
Dec. 23: 2 pm (Additional dates through 1/1/18)
Music Theater Works – Cahn Auditorium. 600 Emerson St., Evanston 

Join Music Theater Works (formerly Light Opera Works) for the family classic. During the North Shore Holiday's special, take 50% off sections "A" (main floor) or section "D" (balcony) at Music Theater Works. When ordering online, enter the "coupon code" PETER to receive the 50% savings for the whole family. Tickets: $34-$96. To order tickets, click here.


Wonderland Express
Dec. 22: 10 am – 5 pm; Dec. 23: 10 am – 7 pm; Dec. 24: 10 am – 3 pm (last ticket sold at 2 pm) Runs through Jan.  7.
Chicago Botanic Garden 1000 Lake Cook Rd., Glencoe 

Tis the season for family fun! Visit the Garden for Wonderland Express, an annual holiday extravaganza featuring magnificent model trains, magical and glittering indoor snow, and meticulously crafted Chicago landmarks in miniature. Plus, see intricate ice carvings and hear beautiful music from carolers on select days. Bring the smartphones and video cameras, as our holiday exhibition delights children and parents, friends and families. Kids, look for Thomas the Tank Engine! Tickets: $8-$11.  For more info, click here.


Afternoon Tea
Dec. 23: 2 – 4 pm
Peckish Pig, 623 Howard St., Evanston 

Enjoy a traditional English afternoon tea featuring a variety of mini sandwiches, homemade scones and a selection of homemade desserts. Peckish Pig is all decked out for the holidays so this is the perfect event to meet up for that festive holiday drink you’ve been trying to squeeze in. The cozy lounge area is comfortable for kids as well as adults. Cost: $20 adults; $10 children 10 and under.  Reservations are required for this event. Please call 847-491-6778 for more info.


Christmas Concert featuring Barb Kronau-Sorensen
Dec. 23: 4:30 – 5:30 pm
The Chalet Nursery, 3123 Lake Ave., Wilmette 

Enjoy a fun, festive and intimate beautiful holiday concert featuring traditional German, English and Norwegian Christmas songs sung in their native languages and translated for the audience.  Barb Kronau-Sorensen is known for her original acoustic pop/rock and traditional German, and Norwegian folk singing. FREE! For more info, click here.


European Cabaret Night
Dec. 23: 8 pm
210, 210 Green Bay Rd., Highwood 

In one performance, international cabaret singer Tanya Melamed will take the audience on a journey around the world through multiple music genres, languages and ethnicities. The program is a musical kaleidoscope where French chanson quickly swirls to Argentine and Polish tango, Russian and Gypsy romances, Italian, Klezmer, Tanya's original compositions and more....$10 cover. For more info, click here.


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