Big Holiday Events Around Town in December

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Tuesday, November 29, 2016 || By COMMUNITY EDITOR || @maywoodnews || UPDATED: 7:35 p.m.

The days ahead are marked by Christmas lights, caroling, hot chocolate and more in Maywood and surrounding communities.  Scroll below to see what upcoming events, which are listed in chronological order, are most suitable for you and your loved ones. Most of them are FREE.

Christmas events near you

Toys for Tots Toy Drive || Nov. 28 to Dec. 14 || Melrose Park Civic Center, 1000 N. 25th Ave. || MELROSE PARK

Mayor Ron Serpico’s Annual Toys for Tots Drive for underprivileged children will be held at the Melrose Park Civic Center, Nov. 28 through Dec. 14, 2016.

The Toys for Tots Drive is open to all community members and organizations. Items can be dropped off at the Civic Center foyer, 1000 N. 25th Ave., Melrose Park.

Everyone is encouraged to participate by dropping off new, unwrapped toys. Last year’s drive was very successful and the village is hoping this year’s event will be even better.

For more information, call Toys for Tots Chairperson Mary Ann Paolantonio at

Triton Festival of Trees || Dec. 2 || 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. || 2000 S. 5th Ave. || RIVER GROVE 

Triton College is seeking people to sponsor Christmas trees on behalf of municipalities, business, organizations and individuals for its annual Holiday Festival of Trees on Dec. 2, from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., on the Triton College Mounds, located on the west side of the campus, 2000 S. 5th Ave., River Grove.

Interested sponsors can decorate their trees from Nov. 28 to Dec. 1. On Dec. 2, participants will be treated to hot chocolate, cookies, holiday music and a photo booth during the event. They’ll also be able to take in a free holiday show at the Cernan Center.

Take a photo of your tree and share it with the college using the hashtag #DeckTheMounds.

Each lighted tree is $150, with proceeds to benefit the student scholarships through the Triton College Foundation. For more information call (708) 456-0300, Ext. 3165/3172 or click here.

Christmas tree lighting || Dec. 2 || 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. || Corner of 5th Ave. and St. Charles || MAYWOOD 

After searching throughout the village, the Maywood Environmental and Beautification Commission has found a Christmas tree, a spruce, to display during the Christmas season.

The tree, donated by Maywood resident Lawrence Sparks, will be the centerpiece of a tree lighting ceremony on Friday, Dec. 2, from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., at the corner of 5th Ave. and St. Charles.

The ceremony will feature numerous special guests, including Pastor Elliot Wimbush of First Congregational Church of Maywood, who will lead participants in carols; storytelling by Kim Davidson; face painting; the Proviso East drama team and band; the Second Baptist children’s choir; and more.

Holiday Magic || Dec. 3-4, 10-11, 17-18 || Brookfield Zoo, 3300 Golf Road || BROOKFIELD 

Brookfield Zoo’s 35th annual Holiday Magic event features more than one million twinkling LED lights, caroling to the animals, an ice carving demonstration, a magic show, live entertainment, model railroad displays and more.

$17.85; $12.50 seniors and ages 3-11; FREE to children under 3 and members. Information at (708) 688-8000 or click here.

Christmas Winter Festival || Dec. 3 || 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. || 1025 W. Lake St. || MELROSE PARK

St. Paul Lutheran will be hosting a Christmas Winter Festival this Saturday. Join them for a little shopping and eating while live and pre-recorded Christmas music plays. Stroll through the aisles and check out the various vendors, home baked goodies, and attic treasures.  Stop and have a little lunch and join in singing some Christmas carols too!

St. Paul is also looking for additional vendors who wish to sell their items at our Christmas Winter Festival. One vendor per company or brand; tables are $25.00 each on a first come, first serve basis. Contact 708-544-1336 or 708-343-1000 to reserve your table.

Holiday open house || Dec. 7 || 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. || Melrose Park Public Library, 801 N. 19th Ave. || MELROSE PARK

Drop by the Melrose Park Public Library  for some holiday treats and fun! And by the way, we’ve got lots of great holiday books!

Merry Grinchmas Holiday Event || Dec. 10 || 8 a.m. || North Riverside Park Mall, 7501 W. Cermak Rd. || RIVERSIDE 

We’re inviting all the little elves, naughty and nice kids to our Annual Kids Club Holiday event, held inside of our food court. Join us for a classical reading of “How the Grinch stole Christmas.” Enjoy FREE face painting, music and prizes. The first 150 kids will receive a FREE Elf Plush Toy. For more info, click here.

Breakfast with Santa || Dec. 10 || 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. || Proviso East High School, 807 S. 1st Ave. || MAYWOOD 

Join us on Thursday, Dec. 10 for our annual breakfast with Santa, held in the high school’s cafeteria (enter at the clock tower). We look forward to seeing you!

Christmas sing-along || Dec. 10 || 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. || Maywood Public Library, 121 S. 5th Ave. || MAYWOOD 

Please join us at the Maywood Public Library on Saturday, Dec. 10, from 6:30 to 9:00 pm, for our annual holiday sing-along! There will be live music, food, fun, and giveways. There will also be a Split-the-Pot Raffle! So come on out and enjoy an evening filled with lots of holiday cheer!

42nd Annual Madrigal Dinner Fine Arts Fest || Dec. 10 || 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. || Proviso West High School, 4701 Harrison St. || HILLSIDE 

Proviso West High School will be the scene of lords and ladies, court jesters, and royalty at the 42nd annual Madrigal Singers Dinner Fine Arts Fest at 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 10.

The shows are a fundraiser for the Proviso East and Proviso West choral music departments that reenact a 15th–century royal court. Guests will be treated to music, dance, and drama in the Proviso West Little Theater followed by a three-course meal and raffle prizes in the “Royal Dining Hall.”

During this time, those in attendance will be entertained with Madrigal-style harmonies, dances, comedic and dramatic sketches, and traditional holiday vocal music. For more info, click here.

Brunch with Santa || Dec. 11 and Dec. 18 || Seatings at 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m. || Brookfield Zoo, 3300 Golf Road || BROOKFIELD

Enjoy an extravagant all-you-can-eat buffet, visits with Mr. and Mrs. Claus and the appearance of the zoo’s costumed characters.

$39.95; $29.95 ages 3-11; FREE for ages 2 and under, which includes admission, parking, tax and gratuity. Reservations are required. Information at (708) 688-8355 or click here.

9th Annual Seniors Christmas Party || Dec. 14 || 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. || Mariella’s Banquet Hall, 124 S. 5th Ave. || MAYWOOD

The Village of Maywood invites you to its 9th Annual Seniors Christmas Party, held at Mariella’s Banquet Hall. This event will feature a full buffet dinner, gifts for all seniors and entertainment. This holiday party is compliments of Mayor Edwenna Perkins, the Maywood Board of Trustees and Village Clerk Viola Mims.

Attention Maywood Senior!  Reserve a spot for this blowout holiday event by either signing up at a Maywood Senior Club meeting, by calling Larry Shapiro at (708) 238-3657 or by emailing Larry at

The deadline for reserving your spot is Friday, Dec. 9.

Santa photos || Dec. 16 || 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. || Winston Plaza, 1254 Winston Plaza || MELROSE PARK

Spend $25 at Winston Plaza on Friday, Dec. 16 and receive a FREE photo with Santa. $5 per photo without receipt. Proceeds will benefit Toys for Tots.

Winter Wonderland || Dec. 17 || 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. || Beverly Center, 3031 S. 25th Ave. || BROADVIEW

The Broadview Park District presents a Winter Wonderland! This event will feature dance performances, face painting, ornament decorating, a bounce house, selfies with Santa, a toy giveaway and more! For more info, call (708) 343-5637 or click here. VFP

Your big event missing? Submit info to You can also message us on Facebook. 

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