DuPage County may be too far west to get the brunt of the Lake Effect coming off of Lake Michigan, but winters can still be long and brutal. But winter can also be beautiful with the blanket of white covering everything and glistening in the flickering holiday lights, the sound of freshly-fallen snow crunching under your feet, the smell of spices and warmth of the fire almost anywhere you go. Continue that feeling of warmth and togetherness this winter at one of these five DuPage County area activities this winter.
1. Naperville Christkindlmarket
Christkindlmarket has become a Chicagoland staple every holiday season. With locations in downtown Chicago and Naperville, from late November until Christmas you can visit this outdoor market for all your holiday spirit needs. Sample some traditional German food and drink while walking through the many vendors and stopping to listen to the diverse entertainment. If you’re new to the area or have never made it to Christkindlmarket before, make sure stop by this year before it’s gone!
2. Naper Lights
Another Naperville staple, Naper Lights is conveniently located near Christkindlmarket in Naper Settlement. Naper Lights has been a tradition since 2012 and as always, admission is free. Bundle up and join the other 200,000+ visitors in the annual walk through gorgeous holiday light displays that transform the Naper Settlement into an extravaganza of holiday cheer.
3. Brookfield Zoo
One of the largest zoos in the country by square foot, the Brookfield Zoo is a great place for all ages year round, but it’s especially magical in the winter. Not only do you get to see the cold-climate animals in their element, but the zoo itself also transforms with the Holiday Magic event and the Chicago Wolves Skating Rink. Walk through over one million twinkling LED lights then rent some skates and try your skills in the rink.
4. Paramount Theater
Are you a little more indoor-inclined? Take a look at Parmount Theater’s calendar and plan a visit that doesn’t need any extra layers of clothing. Paramount Theater offers shows nearly every day of the week and often has shorter runs of productions that are tailored to the holidays. Between the Broadway Series, pre-show events, and other events there’s plenty to do without having to be out in the cold.
5. Fox Valley Park District
You may not think of the park district as the place to be in the winter, but Fox Valley has tons of activities even in the colder months, for people of all ages. They have plenty of holiday-themed events in December, a Family New Year’s Eve Bash the morning of the 31st, and many other fun things to do throughout January and February. Check out their website for more details and a full calendar of events.