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Thursday, January 20, 2022

Santa is expected at NaperLights on Dec. 23 and then around the world for Christmas


Come on down to the heart of Naperville where endearing and chatty wildlife welcomes visitors every day along the winding brick path of the Riverwalk, just steps from shopping, dining and all kinds of amusement every season. Note also that from 6 to 8PM Thurs., Dec. 23, Santa will make a stop at NaperLights before he heads back to the North Pole in advance of his annual trek with a sled full of toys to deliver around the world.

This week!

***Date open and ongoing thru the holiday season…

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. Plaid is the theme for the season to shop small!

***NOW / Downtown Naperville store windows are inviting with plaid tidings, elves hiding and penguins working, all signs that the colorful holiday shopping and dining season is here. Thanks for supporting local stores, banks, restaurants and other enterprise that contribute to local revenues right here at home. DNA Gift Certificates are available!

***NOW America’s heartland is hurting with heartbreaking news of devastation and deaths caused by severe storms and tornadoes that touched down in six states during Friday night storms, Dec. 11, 2021, including Edwardsville, Illinois, as reported the following day and ever since. God bless America’s resilience with can-do spirit and all first responders during this time of rescue and recovery. Update: 2021 U.S. tornadoes: Facts, FAQs, and how to help via World Vision. (Note also on Jan. 18, 2022, 100% of sales at Meson Sabika and Tapas Valenica (1530 State Street in Chicago) will be donated to World Vision and the American Red Cross for disaster relief. RSVP at (312) 842-4444.) 

***NOW Naperville Long-Term Recovery Group met Dec. 20. With traumatic needs on our minds about destruction in southern Illinois, also noteworthy is that the City of Naperville is addressing challenges of local residents who were victims of the ravaging EF-3 tornado that tore through Naperville six months ago on Father’s Day 2021. To help the community identify what unmet needs remain as long-term recovery continues, the Naperville Long-Term Recovery Group (made up of Ranch View Area Community Assistance, the City of Naperville, Loaves & Fishes Community Services and other volunteers) accepts feedback online from residents who reside in the area near Ranch View area. Click here to link to the survey.

***NOW and Every day! / Thanks for reading PN online (and in print) as part of your multi-media experience! Thanks for supporting local enterprise, charitable giving, public safety as well as the community’s can-do spirit whenever possible.

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.

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

***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! Closed Christmas Day. Discover all that’s new for the holidays whenever shopping and dining throughout downtown Naperville. Shop small!

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!

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.

***NOW and All through the year! / Naperville Art Gallery of Gifts – 10AM to 5PM Tuesday through Friday, located at 508 North Center Street. The Gallery also is open Saturday from 10AM until 4PM. Note, however, the Gallery is closed Christmas Eve/Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve/New Year’s Day. 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. 

Serendipity is open Monday through Saturday. The best days to donate quality items are Mondays and Thursdays, but any day is OK.

***NOW and all year! / Serendipity Resale Shop / Find Little Friends Serendipity Resale Shop open 10AM to 5PM Mon. through Sat., now located at the Aurora Marketplace Shopping Center, 461 S. Route 59 at 75th Street. All support and sales benefit the needs and programs at Little Friends.

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”!

***NOW thru Dec. 25 – Open every evening until Christmas / Reindeer Road Drive-Thru – Now open at 6:30PM every evening Wednesday 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. 

Sookie is the official greeter at The Boxes in Cress Creek Shopping Center and she welcomes visitors Monday thru Saturday.
***NOW / Pack & Ship via The Boxes– Hours are 9AM to 6:30PM Monday thru Friday and 9AM to 3PM on Saturday. (Packages needed to wrapped and sent by Dec. 15, 2021, in order for Christmas arrivals.) The Boxes, closed Christmas Day and Sundays, is located at 790 Royal St. George in the Cress Creek Shopping Center. Every day, a wide selection of greeting cards is available along with many other last-minute gift ideas. Be sure to say “hello” to Sookie, the quiet and friendly greeter at The Boxes.

This Week until Christmas

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

Dec. 23 / Last Call! Santa Claus welcomes wish lists from 6-8PM Thurs., Dec. 23, at NaperLights – With plans to head back to the North Pole to inspire last-minute toy making for good girls and boys, Santa will greet families strolling through the colorful lights and the grand illumination of downtown Naperville. Still, NaperLights will shine every evening until the New Year. For more photos and activities of NaperLights, click here.

***NOW In case you missed it… Click here for PN’s photo gallery from the recent Naperville Municipal Band Holiday Concert at The Wentz, a reminder to save the date on your March 2022 calendar for the NMB Winter Concert at 3PM Sun., March 20. Public welcome! Free of admission charge. Kindly arrive in advance of 3PM. The Wentz Concert Hall is in the North Central College Fine Arts Center, located at 171 E. Chicago Avenue, just steps from downtown Naperville.

***NOW And when you’re out and about after dark…

Holiday lights illuminate homes all along Williamsburg Drive with good cheer…

Dec. 25 / Merry Christmas to all with the gifts of good health and prosperity for the New Year.

Click here / Community Events Calendar

Think dinner & the show! Think charitable gifts!

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. Annual galas in support of the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce on Jan. 28, 2022, and Little Friends Benefit Auction in March 2022 with details available soon, come to mind.

Thanks for supporting local charitable causes whenever possible. Some families have mentioned when they gather together during this season of giving, they donate with shared interest to a local nonprofit that’s making a difference.

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 such as Quigley’s Irish Pub with a heated patio at www.dinenaperville.com. Thanks also for supporting live music such as the sounds of bands at Quigley’s Irish Pub* (Most Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays). No cover.  

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 reopening, new and coming soon that will grow Dine Naperville. For instance, Front Street Cantina is now reopened with delicious new entrees on the menu. LaBorra Cafe recently opened. And Zade’s Lounge plans to open Dec. 29, 2021.

Located in the shopping center at 22 E. Chicago Avenue at Washington, Zade’s Lounge, a spacious new dining and entertainment venue, is set to open Dec. 29, 2021. Karaoke will be offered every Sunday evening. No reservations accepted at this time. Zade’s joins LaSorella di Francesca, Fat Rosie’s and Vasili’s, all members of Scott Harris Hospitality, with a location in downtown Naperville, said Culinary Director Jaysen Euler.

Hospitality shows and matters in Naperville

In addition to lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch, Meson Sabika provides a lovely setting for holiday dinners and New Year’s Eve celebrations with family, friends and neighbors. Looking forward to all seasons, the historic site is a place for fundraising events (Jan. 18, 2022, an all day benefit to fund tornado disaster relief via World Vision and American Red Cross is planned.), outdoor weddings and other special occasions inside the mansion, outside on the patio or in the spacious Pavilion. The beautiful mansion with intimate private rooms also provides a romantic setting for date nights. Meson Sabika is located at 1025 Aurora Ave. 

When visitors are expected, sleep in heavenly peace

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.

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

Dec. 31 / One more thing, while Moser Tower is being rehabilitated, New Year’s Eve at the Carillon will not ring out on Big Joe in anticipation of 2022. Yet, if it snows anytime soon, Sled Hill at Rotary Hill along the Riverwalk is ready.

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.

Thanks for visiting this website! Thanks for reading PN in print & online!

In case you missed it, here’s our favorite photo of the season. Santa appears to be row-row-rowing with 10 other kayakers on the DuPage River. Ho! Ho! Ho!

Happy holidays. God bless us every one!

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An editor is someone who prepares content for publishing. It entered English, the American Language, via French. Its modern sense for newspapers has been around since about 1800.

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