Through Jan 6, A Christmas Story Comes Home, Indiana Welcome Center, 7770 Corinne Dr, Hammond. 800.ALL.LAKE. southshorecva.com/achristmasstory. A Christmas Story-themed event and contests await families at this exhibit, a tribute to the beloved movie. The exhibit centers around the six animatronic window displays from Macy’s Department Store in New York that feature different scenes from the movie. Additional activities include a chance to have a photo taken atop Santa’s Mountain before taking a ride down the slide, a theme writing contest, a relay race, a mashed potato eating contest and more.
Nov 30, City of Hobart Christmas Tree Lighting, Festival Park, 111 E Old Ridge Rd, Hobart. Celebrate the holiday season with live entertainment, carriage rides and a visit with Santa during the lighting of the Christmas tree.
Dec 7, Holly Days, 5-7pm, downtown Valparaiso, (219) 464.8332. valparaisoevents.com. Valparaiso kicks off its holiday season with this free family event, which offers holiday musical performances on the Porter Health Amphitheater Stage, a giant ice sculpture by Michiana Ice Carvers, a live nativity scene complete with live animals, sidewalk carolers, and specials at downtown stores and restaurants. Don't miss the Holly and JJ Jolly Show in front of the Memorial Opera House and Porter County Museum as the prelude to Santa’s arrival.
Dec 8, NWI Veteran's Benefit Concert, 7pm, County Line Orchard, 200 S County Line Rd, Hobart. (219) 947.4477. countylineorchard.com. This all acoustic concert will honor local veterans and feature music from Chris & Lou, Craw Puppies, The Unstoppables, New Element, Old Skool, and Special Guests. Free admission for all active duty personnel.
Dec 13-16, Holiday Shopping Bazaar, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Marquette Park Pavilion, 1 N Grand Boulevard, Gary. 219.938.7362. Local and regional crafters and vendors showcase their unique work and products at this first-time shopping event. This event also features a mitten tree where citizens, customers and friends are encouraged to bring donations to support local shelters for abused women and their children.
Dec 15, Yuletide Open House, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., downtown Lowell. (219) 696.6487. shoplowellindiana.com. Enjoy last-minute shopping in a Norman Rockwell-type setting on the sidewalks of downtown Lowell. This festive event includes store sales, restaurant specials, complimentary candy canes and refreshments, sidewalk Christmas music, and a visit from Frosty the Snowman.
Ongoing Chicago Trolley and Double Decker Hop-on Hop-off Signature Tour, beginning at 9 a.m., various designated stops. Chicago. chicagotrolley.com. (773) 773.648.5000. Available year-round and covering 13 miles with 14 stops, this tour takes passengers to Skydeck Chicago, the famed museum campus (Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium and Adler Planetarium), the historic Chicago Theater, Millennium Park, Water Tower Place, The Art Institute, Navy Pier and the John Hancock Observatory.
Through Dec 21, Caroling at Cloud Gate, 6 p.m., Chase Promenade Central, Millennium Park, Michigan Ave & Washington St, Chicago. (312) 742.1168. millenniumpark.org. Now in its seventh season, this cherished Chicago tradition showcases Chicago choral groups and invites visitors to participate in a holiday sing-along.
Through Dec 24, 16th Annual Christkindlmarket, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mon-Thu, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Fri-Sat, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.Sun., Daley Plaza, 50 W Washington St, Chicago. (312) 494.2175. christkindlmarket.com. Situated in the heart of downtown Chicago, the Christkindlmarket is a holiday market fashioned after century-old markets in Germany. It features German and international vendors displaying hand-crafted ornaments, toys, foods and other unique gifts. Most days, there also will be musical entertainment to put visitors into the holiday spirit.