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Monday, January 24, 2022

Things to do around Naperville through December 19, 2021


Come on down! Downtown Naperville store windows are inviting with plaid tidings and cheerful penguins, all signs that the colorful holiday shopping and dining season is here.

Click here for updated calendar posted Dec. 22, 2021.

Scenes of penguins are on display, sandwiched between local enterprise throughout downtown Naperville, pitching plaid tidings to you and your kin for shopping locally in support of small businesses. Check out plaid bows on door handles!

***Date open and ongoing…

This weekend…

***Now thru Dec. 31 / Cheers to Dean’s, now celebrating its first 62 years! – Stop by Dean’s Fine Clothing for Men & Women at 226 S. Main Street where they’re “mad about plaid” for the holidays! Discover all that’s new for the holidays whenever shopping and dining throughout downtown Naperville. Shop small!

Santa Claus, Mayor Steve Chirico, NACC President/CEO Kaylin Risvold and NACC Ambassadors lent good cheer for the holidays as Brookyn Janor helped cut the ribbon during the official weekend opening of Reindeer Road on Fri., Dec. 3, a bright new event visible from I-88. Reindeer Road is a collaboration between Janor Events (Rich Janor) and Brookdale Lighting (Matt Baker) to spread joy this holiday season.

***Dec. 3 / Ribbon Cutting for Reindeer Road Drive-Thru at 4PM Dec. 3

Reindeer Road surrounds a spacious parking lot at Highpoint Church. Take the tour through colorful dancing lights, greeted by characters decked out for the holiday season and a 40′ tall reindeer, billed as the “tallest reindeer in the world”!

***Dec. 3 – Open Wednesdays, Thursday, Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays thru Christmas / Reindeer Road Drive-Thru – Now open at 6:30PM every evening Tuesday through Sunday until 10PM (Last vehicle tour begins at 9:30PM) through Christmas at Highpoint Church, located at 1805 High Point Drive. The giant reindeer can be seen fully illuminated and looking down on by passers-by on I-88 near Naperville Road. The new charitable event will benefit KidsMatter and The Alive Center. Admission for the drive-thru attraction is only $10 per carload, not per person, so carpooling with family and friends is encouraged.  For information on ticket presale, dates and times, sponsorship and vendor opportunities, and all event details, visit ReindeerRoad.com. Note! Reindeer Road is dark every Monday and Tuesday.

Naperville Park Police Sergeant Lou Jourdan, Chief Steve Schindlbeck and Officer John Driscoll invite residents to share a little holiday spirit with a donation to Toys for Tots.

Now thru Dec. 11 / Park Police Collecting Donations for Toys for Tots Drop off new, unwrapped toys at any of five Naperville Park District locations, including NPD Administration Building, 320 W. Jackson Ave., Fort Hill Activity Center, 20 Fort Hill Drive, and  95th Street Center, located at 2244 W. 95th St.  Thanks! (Did you know? Walt Disney designed the Toys for Tots logo for the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves in 1947.)

Look for Santa by the Big Tree with many NaperLights, hosted by the Rotary Club of Naperville Sunrise, just off Water Street.

Dec. 3 / Santa Claus begins his weekend visits at NaperLights – After dark Fridays and Saturdays for the next three weekends, Santa will greet families and friends. Stroll through the colorful lights and the grand illumination of downtown Naperville. Though Santa will be headed back to the North Pole on weekdays, NaperLights will shine every evening until the New Year. For more photos and activities of NaperLights, click here.

This post is chock full of photos that help depict a small sampling of community spirit. We like to think that our past gives richness to our present.

***December through a happy New Year / NaperLights – At dusk, bright holiday lights all along Water Street provide many colorful locations for family photos.

Find jewelry, ornaments, greeting cards, photography and other one-of-a-kind original art, perfect for holiday gifts, on display at the Naperville Art League. The gallery is located off Fifth Avenue at 508 N. Center Street.

***Dec. 4 / All through the year! Naperville Art Gallery of Gifts – 10AM to 4PM Saturdays, located at 508 North Center Street. The Gallery also is open Tuesday through Friday from 10AM until 5PM. For information about Naperville Art League membership, classes, rotating displays, art competitions or the Riverwalk Fine Art Fair, call (630) 355-2530. Original art available for sale makes a great gift. Thanks for supporting local artisans. 

Dec. 4 / North Central College hosts quarterfinal round NCAA Division III football playoff game against the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) Engineers – 12PM Sat., Dec. 4, at Benedetti-Wehrli Stadium. NCAA football playoff game ticket prices are $10/adults and $5/students, children 3 and up and seniors (62+). Tickets are also available for purchase at the stadium ticket booth Saturday beginning at 10:30AM. Update! Cardinals win, 55-6, and advance to the NCAA Division III Football Semi-Finals against The Mount Union Purple Raiders (13-0) next Saturday at the University of Mount Union in Alliance, Ohio. Go, Cardinals!

For 26-plus years, Naperville Trolley & Tours has created memories for families and friends, especially during the holidays.

***Now thru Dec. 28, 2021 / Holiday Light Trolley-La La La – La La La La Tours – (Closed on Christmas) Climb on board Naperville Trolley & Tours to share holiday cheer while discovering many of the bright spots of Naperville. Start and end at various locations North and South. Find dates, times and reservations at www.napervilletrolley.com. Ding! Ding! with caroling bells and a Ding Dong, too!

Dec. 4 / Jim Brickman presents ‘The Gift of Christmas’ at the Wentz Concert Hall – 8PM Sat., Dec. 4. Click here for details.

Dec. 5 / Chanukah 2021 – 10AM Sun., Dec. 5 / “Oh Chanukah, Oh, Chanukah. Come light the menorah,” for eight days of the Festival of Lights, Nov. 28 through Sundown Dec. 6. Family Fun Day and Helicopter Gelt Drop begins at 10AM with fun for the whole family including an actual Helicopter gelt drop, DIY menorah making, Chanukah cookie decorating, and more at the Abrams Center for Jewish Life, 651 Amersale Dr. / At 4PM, the community is welcome to join the Menorah Car Parade beginning at the Abrams Center for Jewish Life. Drive through Naperville spreading the light of Chanukah, end in downtown Naperville with the last menorah lighting of the year at the Riverwalk Amphitheater with the Labyrinth (corner of Jackson and Eagle).

Dec. 5 / WWII Veterans Cemetery Walking Tour – 1-2PM Sun., Dec. 5. 
$20/Person, Free for Children Under 4. Located at Ss. Peter and Paul Cemetery
In commemoration of Pearl Harbor,  a cemetery walking tour of World War II veteran grave sites is planned at Ss. Peter and Paul Cemetery in Naperville. Highlighted memorials will include the grave site of Arnie Massier whose life is currently featured in the exhibit at Naper Settlement, Answering the Call: Naperville at War.


Dec. 6 / Naperville Community Unit School District Board of Education Meeting – 7PM Mon., Dec. 6, 2021, at Washington Junior High School. Find agenda here:


Veterans Valor is a place on the Century Walk tour to pause and reflect about peace. Consider the five men who grew up here, attended Naperville High School, and served in World War II. Fortunately, all five men returned home, having earned high military honors. Depicted by sculptor artist Shirley McWorter-Moss are Army 1st Lt. Al Rubin, Platoon Commander; Army Staff Sgt. Leo Kuefler, Tank Commander; Army Air Corps Cpt. Vinnie Mazza, B-24 Pilot; Navy Lt. Bob Wehrli, Pt. Boat Commander; and Marine Corps 1st Lt. Don Darfler, Fighter Pilot.
***Dec. 7 / National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day commemorates Dec. 7, 1941. Peace.  On this day, consider Valor, Sacrifice, and Peace. Find rich history on display every day in Central Park by following the sidewalk beyond Veterans Valor.
Dec. 7 / Hines Community Outreach Team Visit – 10AM to 2PM. Tues., Dec. 7 / Monthly visit (first Tuesday most months) is hosted at the Judd Kendall VFW Post 3873, 908 W. Jackson Avenue, to address Veterans’ health issues. 
Dec. 7 / City Council Public Meeting: Water Street TIF District Joint Review Board – 10AM Tues., Dec. 7 / Click here for link to report.
Dec. 7 / West Suburban Irish Quiz Night at Quigley’s – 7PM Tues., Dec. 7 / Quigley’s Irish Pub, 43 E. Jefferson in downtown Naperville. It’s fun, it’s free and you don’t even have to be a member of WSI to play. The top 3 teams will win fabulous prizes. Plus, the high-scoring teams from each round get a little something, too. No need to register. Arrive early as tables fill up pretty quickly. Just grab a table for your team at Quigley’s and be prepared to fill out the trivia. Thanks for remembering to B.Y.O.P.! Bring Your Own Pen!
Dec. 7 / Naperville City Council Meeting – 7PM Tues., Dec. 7 / Naperville Municipal Center, 400 S. Eagle Street. Click here for agenda that includes the public hearing for the 2022 Annual Budget (Item 1 of 2) and passing the ordinance adopting the 2022 Annual Budget in the amount of $540,578,892 (Item 2 of 2). Update, Budget passed, 6-3.
Sookie is the official greeter at The Boxes in Cress Creek Shopping Center and she welcomes visitors Monday thru Saturday.
Dec. 7 thru Dec. 15 / Pack & Ship via The Boxes – Hours are 9AM to 6:30PM Monday thru Friday and 9AM to 3PM on Saturday. Wrap and send packages by Dec. 15 in order for Christmas arrivals. The Boxes is located at 790 Royal St. George in the Cress Creek Shopping Center. A wide selection of greeting cards is available along with many other last-minute gift ideas. Be sure to say “hello” to Sookie.

Dec. 7 / Little Friends Giving Tree & Essential NeedsClick here for everything to know about the annual Holiday Giving Tree Program and other programs throughout the year that benefit Little Friends. Thank you.

Dec. 9 / Naperville Park District Board of Commissioners Meeting – 7PM Thurs., Dec. 9 / Fort Hill Activity Center – Multipurpose Rooms, 20 Fort Hill Drive. Agenda/ LifeStream.

Dec. 9 / MICHAEL BOLTON, Greatest Hits & Holiday Favorites / 8PM Thurs., Dec. 9 / Performance will be presented at Pfeiffer Hall on the campus of North Central College. Click here for details.
Dec. 10 / Miracle on 34th Street – Fri., Sat., Sun., Dec. 10 thru Dec. 19 / 8PM Fridays and Saturdays, 2PM Saturdays and Sundays / TKTS: $28 – $33 / Presented by BrightSide Theatre at the Theater of Meiley Swallow Hall, 31 South Ellsworth Street, on the campus of North Central College.

Weekend #2 – Dec. 11-12

Dec. 11 / America’s heartland is hurting with heartbreaking news of devastation and deaths caused by severe storms and tornadoes that touched down in five states during the night, including Edwardsville, Illinois. Such sadness is seen. God bless America’s resilience with can-do spirit and all first responders during this time of rescue and recovery. Update: The Naperville American Legion Post 43 sent out news late Dec. 12, 2021, regarding a Go Fund Me site dedicated to relief efforts to help Illinois and Kentucky. In addition, the Wheaton Memorial Post 2164 (VFW) and DuPage Honor Guard are collecting water, non-perishables, blankets, coats [all sizes] for those that lost everything in Kentucky and Illinois due to the devastating tornadoes. The public is welcome to help. From now through December 15, drop off much-needed supplies at the Wheaton VFW at 0N731 Papworth St, Wheaton, IL 60187. Thank you.

Dec. 11/ North Central College Cardinals meet up with the University of Mount Union Purple Raiders in the semi-final NCAA Division III football playoff game  – 11AM Sat., Dec. 11, at Mount Union Stadium at the University of Mount Union in Alliance, Ohio. Game will be broadcast on ESPN. Gather with fans and friends to stake out a table near a big-screen TV at a local sports bar. Join a watch party! Go, Cardinals! (Cardinals win! Next Fri., Dec. 17, they’ll vie for the Championship! Stay tuned.)

Dec. 11 / ‘Tis the season when Santa is everywhere, even Naperville Crossings! – 1 to 4PM Sat., Dec. 11. Santa will be stationed on the main patio area between MOD Pizza and Panera. Naperville Crossings in located at Route 59 and 95th Street. Bring your wish lists!

Dec. 11-12 / A Shoppers Christmas Carol at the Riverwalk Amphitheater – 2PM & 5PM Sat. and Sun., Dec. 11 & 12. All performances outdoors. Bundle up! Find info at www.magicalstarlight.org.

Above / Santa enjoys a hug during Pictures with Santa and the Leprechaun at Quigley’s Irish Pub. Note for 2021, safety protocols will be followed. 

Dec. 12 / Pictures with Santa & the Leprechaun at Quigley’s Irish Pub – 11AM-1PM Sun. Dec. 12 / Santa welcomes families to bring your own camera. Bring your own holiday attire. Bring your smiles!  Pet Photos on the Patio at 10AM, weather permitting. For 2021, again remember no holiday hats will be provided. Bring your own! Note also that Santa will stand behind folks for photos. Save hugs for later.

Dec. 12 / DuPage Symphony Orchestra: Yuletide Cheer – 2PM & 4PM Sun., Dec. 12, at Wentz Concert Hall, Wentz Concert Hall, 171 E. Chicago Ave. / TKTS: $6 – $18 / Family-friendly popular Christmas tunes will be performed by DuPage Symphony Orchestra.


Dec. 15 / REFUEL – 1-5PM Wed., Dec. 15 / REFUEL is a FREE one-day, virtual and in-person event featuring world-class speakers. Attendees must pre-register at www.DealerInspire.com/REFUEL. REFUEL 2021 will center around a day of reflection and the chance to recharge looking toward 2022. Attendees also will have the opportunity to donate to Loaves and Fishes; Girls Who Code; Clean Air Task Force, and My Block My Hood My City

Weekend #3 – Dec. 18-19

Dec. 18 / The Nutcracker “Live on Ice!” – 1PM Sat., Dec. 18 / Creative Ice Theater and Seven Bridges are once again preparing local skaters to perform The Nutcracker on Ice during the 2021 holiday season. Performances will be held at 1PM and 7PM Sat., Dec. 18; and at 1PM Sun., Dec. 19. Seven Bridges Ice Arena is located at 6690 IL 53 in Woodridge, Illinois. Advance purchase tickets are available at www.creativeicetheatre.com. Masks required for all attendees.

From autumn through springtime, the Naperville Municipal Band performs indoors, mostly on stage at the Wentz Concert Hall in the North Central College Fine Arts Center. Next up is the Holiday Concert is set for 3PM Sun., Dec. 19, 2021.

Dec. 19 / Naperville Municipal Band Holiday Concert at The Wentz – 3PM Sun., Dec. 19. Public welcome! Free of admission charge.

Click here / Community Events Calendar

Think dinner & the show!

Think dinner and the show and combine a gift certificate/card to a restaurant and theater tickets to performances on stage at North Central College. Perhaps give memberships to places such as Naperville Art League, Naper Settlement or DuPage Children’s Museum. The Naperville Art League also has one-of-a-kind art for sale in its Gallery.

‘Tis the season to give DNA gift cards or to create an experience in 2021 or 2022. Downtown Naperville Gift Cards make great gifts for teachers, coaches, graduates and anyone. With a Downtown Naperville gift card, the recipient can find a new outfit, indulge in a relaxing spa treatment, take a fitness class, pick up a pair of new running shoes, discover a great new book or enjoy a wonderful meal among so many choices.

Or sponsor a donation of special gift certificates that includes for a pair of tickets or an entire table to some other charity gala or golf outing this year. 

Find more things to do under ‘Upcoming Events’ in the column to the right…

Take a break! Dine Around Naperville!

From Catch 35* to Meson Sabika* and many destinations N.E.W. and S, discover more than 260 delicious places to dine in or take out, and find some with a heated patio at www.dinenaperville.com

Note that 40-plus eateries are located throughout downtown Naperville where there are plenty of shopping opportunities in between meals. Cheers to all that’s new and coming soon!

Thanks for supporting live music such as the sounds of bands at Quigley’s Irish Pub* (Most Thursdays Fridays & Saturdays). No cover.  

In addition to lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch, Meson Sabika provides a lovely setting for holiday dinners with family, friends and neighbors. Looking forward to all seasons, the historic site is a place for outdoor weddings and other special occasions inside the mansion, outside on the patio or in the spacious Pavilion. The beautiful mansion with intimate rooms also provides a romantic setting for date nights. Meson Sabika is located at 1025 Aurora Ave. 

Hospitality shows and matters in Naperville

For a listing of all 17 lodging choices in Naperville, offering more than 2,500 rooms, visit visitnaperville.com. Whether planning a wedding, corporate or sporting event; special meeting; family reunion or an extended stay while home construction is temporarily in progress, Naperville can put guests up for a night or a month or more.

Shop, bank & entertain locally, too!

Economic development and tourism go hand in hand. Thanks for supporting the local economy by planning a “staycation” itinerary here and inviting friends and family to come discover Naperville this winter, spring, summer or next fall.

From art exhibits at North Central College to outdoor art in public places called Century Walk, from the DuPage Children’s Museum to Naper Settlement, from the Riverwalk and Central Park in downtown Naperville to more than 100 neighborhood parks throughout the city, and from Naperville Crossings at 95th Street to shopping destinations dotting the landscape here and there, check out everything this community has to offer north, east, west and south.

Everybody is welcome to enjoy the charm, culture, rich history and sporting events that are homegrown and treasured in this vibrant community every day.

Think Dinner & the Show at North Central College

And there’s more latest news…

Look forward with photo-enhanced stories every day on PN’s Latest NewsIn addition to events and other happenings, find public meeting notices scheduled at the Naperville Municipal Center.

Check out PN’s Events Calendar for other events as well as to help plan next week and upcoming weekends.

PN’s Event Calendar features Things to Do, too!

Thanks for visiting this website! Thanks for reading PN!

Post Last Updated, Dec. 15, 2021

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