Santa is making appearances all throughout Lake County this weekend. The downtown districts are the place to be as the holidays have officially arrived.
Holiday Your Way in Lake County and find experiences and activites for the whole family.
Winter break is right around the corner. Click here to find activities to make the most of the recess.
Here are the things to do this weekend December 2-4, 2022.
Downtown Libertyville transforms into a holiday setting from a Hallmark Channel movie this weekend. The holiday festivities start with MainStreet Libertyville’s First Friday event. Support small businesses on Milwaukee Avenue as they offer refreshments, special discounts and a festive atmosphere to find the perfect holiday gift at one of the many mom-and-pop shops like The Joyful Gourmet, Reclaimed Artisans Inc. and more. After shopping, grab a bite at one of the award-winning restaurants like Dangela’s Dumplings, Chrissoulas Restaurant, Main Street Social, Mickey Finn’s Brewery and more. The entire family can join in on Saturday's festivities with the Dickens of a Holiday event. Kids can experience a visit with Santa, Mrs. Claus and his sleigh as the duo listens to wishlists in Cook Park from 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. A Children’s Holiday Shoppe also highlights the yuletide event at Petranek’s Pharmacy, where children purchase gifts for their family with the help of Santa’s elves (no adults are allowed). Children’s Holiday Shoppe items cost up to $6, and elves assist young patrons with gift wrapping. After the Saturday festivities, Santa returns for his parade. The precession begins at the intersection of East Winchester Road and North Milwaukee Avenue. It moves through downtown Libertyville and ends at Oak Trail Drive and Concord Lane. Dickens of a Holiday returns on Saturday, December 10.
Friday-Saturday, December 2-3. First Friday: Friday, December 2; 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Dickens of a Holiday: Saturday, December 3; 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 p.m. Santa’s Parade: Saturday, December 3; 2 p.m. Admission: free. Various locations in downtown Libertyville.
Visit a real-life scene from the 1983 beloved film, “A Christmas Story” at Hawthorn Mall, where the kids can meet Santa. The man in the red suit posts up throughout the holiday season at the lower level of Macy’s Court, taking pictures with kids and listening to their wishlist must-haves. The set design emulates Christmas comedy featuring the iconic leg lamp, a crate labeled “Fragile,” an elf with a more pleasant disposition than the movie and the living room of the Parker family. Families can take pictures or utilize the onsite professional photographer to capture the memory. Visitors are encouraged to register for a timeslot at ShopHawthornMall.com. The set piece is open daily to the public to take photographs and play on the slide.
Friday-Sunday, December 3-5; Various times. Admission: free; photographer packages cost extra. Hawthorn Mall, 122 Hawthorn Center, Vernon Hills.
The Village Plaza in Mundelein transforms into a holiday wonderland this weekend. The prelude to the inaugural WinterFest begins Friday with the annual holiday tree lighting ceremony and fireworks. The ceremony features holiday music, carol singing and other festive activities. Santa’s big arrival follows after the festivities begin. There is a reading of “’Twas The Night Before Christmas,” holiday musical performances, visits with the man in red at Santa’s Cottage, and the chance for kids to write letters and free train rides for the little ones. During the tree lighting ceremony, representatives from the U.S. Marines are accepting Toys for Tots Foundation donations. On Saturday, the holiday festival features Santa and Mrs. Claus providing kids with free goodie bags and hot chocolate, free train rides, live entertainment and holiday music, ice sculpting demonstrations, characters from Disney animated film “Frozen”, story time, a “Letters to Santa” writing station, food trucks and more.
Friday-Saturday, December 2-3. Tree Lighting Ceremony: Friday, December 2; 4:30-6:30 p.m. WinterFest: Saturday; noon-6 p.m. Admission: free. Mundelein Village Hall, 300 Plaza Circle, Mundelein.
The village of Deerfield flips the switch on the holiday festivities this weekend. The festivities begin Friday evening with its Winter Celebration at the Deerfield Village Hall. The extravaganza features live entertainment, ice sculpting, a winter wonderland photo booth and more. Restaurants have stands open and delectable holiday fare for purchase. Visit the Jewett Park Community Center on Saturday for the Deerfield Winter Market. The free Saturday market features live entertainment, retail booths, arts and crafts sellers, food vendors, a Polar Express train, visits from Kris Kringle and other holiday fun. Santa is hanging out at the market listening to children’s wishlists. Friday-Saturday, December 2-3. Winter Celebration:
Friday, December 2; 5-8 p.m. Winter Market; December 3; 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Admission: free. Deerfield Village Hall, 850 Waukegan Rd., Deerfield. Jewett Park Community Center, 826 Jewett Park Dr., Deerfield.
The Sanfilippo Estate invites visitors for a unique holiday experience and a family Christmas concert. Masterful organist Dave Wickerman uses his talents to create a wonderful festive experience tickling the keys of the mighty Sanfilippo Wurlitzer organ. To complement the sounds of holiday music, the Barrington estate has elegant holiday decorations throughout the halls and corridors. Prior to the holiday concert, the Sanfilippo invites attendees to a with tours of the estate from 1-2:30 p.m. The concert starts after the tours conclude. After the performance, visitors can view and ride the carousel from 4-5 p.m. Visitors must have a ticket for entry as the Sanfilippo Estate is a private residence. The Sanfilippo Traditional Concert on Sunday is sold out.
Saturday, December 3; 1-5 p.m. Tickets: $20-$55. The Sanfilippo Estate, 789 Plum Tree Rd., Barrington.
Click here for experiences to Holiday Your Way in Lake County.
Click here to view activities to keep the kids busy over the winter break.