CHICAGO, Friday, November 9, 2012. Chicago’s Magnificent Mile Lights Festival serves as a beacon for Chicago's holiday season for millions--with musical performances, characters from Walt Disney World®, fireworks and more on Saturday, November 17.
The festival kicks off at 11a.m. in Lights Festival Lane (Pioneer Court, 401 N. Michigan Avenue). Families are invited to enjoy holiday-themed activities with booths from John Hancock Observatory, Garrett Popcorn Shops, The Eli’s Cheesecake Company, BMO Harris Bank and others. Below is a schedule of events for the Festival plus other in-town happenings:
Schedule of Events: (all musical performances will take place on the BMO Harris Bank Stage, located at Pioneer Court, 401 N. Michigan Avenue):
- 11:00am: Justin Roberts and the Not Ready for Naptime Players.
- 12:15pm: Radio Disney Road Crew.
- 12:45pm: Olivia Holt.
- 1:00pm: Shane Harper.
- 2:00pm: R5.
- 3:00pm: Colton Dixon.
Parade and Fireworks.
5:30p.m. - 7:00p.m.:
- Parade. Grand Marshalls Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse will lead the parade down The Magnificent Mile, illuminating more than one million lights on 200 trees along North Michigan Avenue. The procession will feature 40 floats, giant helium-filled balloons, marching bands plus the return of crowd favorites including Santa Claus soaring above the crowds on the John Hancock Observatory float, the larger-than-life Hubert the Lion balloon from BMO Harris Bank and popular Chicago sports stars aboard the Harry Caray’s Restaurant Group float. New additions include a float made entirely of candy from Candyality, a Holiday Magic float from Brookfield Zoo and more. The parade route runs down North Michigan Avenue from Oak Street to Wacker Drive.
- The Fireworks Spectacular over the Chicago River serves as the grand finalé to the lighting procession. Michigan Avenue and the Chicago River.
Reindeer on the River.
Meet Santa's Reindeer on the Chicago River. Two live reindeer and Santa are part of the fun on the Riverwalk at "Trump International Hotel and Tower". The family-friendly event, scheduled to coincide with Magnificent Mile Lights Festival, is complimentary to all visitors and will take place from 3 to 8 p.m. on November 17. The Riverwalk is adjacent to the Magnificent Mile, and is accessible via both the Wrigley Building breezeway and Wabash Avenue--allowing pedestrian traffic directly along the Chicago River.
Public transportation is your best choice if you are coming to the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival, but for those who do drive ParkWhiz is offering a 25% discount on parking at their garages for the Lights Festival this Saturday if you tweet them (@ParkWhiz) on Twitter.
One if by land...
Shoreline Tours is offering a water and land tour of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile Lights Festival. They promise to provide visitors the best view of preparations for the traditional Chicago holiday event. The special holiday tour departs at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Nov. 17 from Shoreline’s dock at Gateway Park in the southwest corner of Navy Pier. Use promo code: 700 for a discount.
More Holiday Happenings in Town.
- Millennium Park Ice Rink is open for skating with skate rental available.
- Bookamania at Harold Washington Library Center takes place on November 17, from 11a.m. to 3p.m. The festival features favorite children’s book authors and illustrators, costumed storybook characters, puppetry, theater, dance, magic, music, plus dozens of book-related art activities. Ages 3 to 10.
- A Christmas Carol at Goodman Theatre, opens November 17 at Chicago's Goodman Theatre (through December 29).
- Christmas Around the World at the Museum of Science and Industry opens November 17 (through January 8, 2013).