Guide to Lincoln Park Zoo’s ZooLights 2019

Guide to Lincoln Park Zoo’s ZooLights 2019

It’s beginning to look a lot like the holidays. One of Chicago’s most popular holiday traditions, ZooLights, returns this holiday season on Friday, November 29th.

ZooLights illuminates the zoo with more than 2.5 million lights and hundreds of dynamic displays.zoolights20161129_jf_zoolights-7_0_0

The zoo is transformed into a twinkling winter wonderland for 28 nights complete with ongoing programs and events.

Highlights include:

Members-Only Night (Nov. 22). Lincoln Park Zoo members get an exclusive preview of ZooLights before it opens to the public. The Lionel Train Adventure, AT&T Endangered Species Carousel and Light Maze will be running free of charge.

A Holiday Market (Dec. 3). Entry is $10 ($8 for Lincoln Park Zoo members).

Adults Night Out: Holidaze (Dec. 5). The adults only event features an ugly sweater contest, dazzling displays, holiday activities, music, bars, and wildlife chats from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $15 ($12 for Lincoln Park Zoo members). Food, hot chocolate, festive cocktails, mulled wine, and beer (for those ages 21+) are available for purchase.soolightsdragon3_0

BrewLights (Dec. 12). Guests ages 21+ will forage for local craft and seasonal beers amidst the dazzle of ZooLightsEnjoy photos ops with Santa at the Helen Brach Primate House, free rides on the AT&T Endangered Species Carousellive music, and more. Tickets (regular and designated driver) are available. Food is available for purchase.

Breakfast with Santa (Dec.15) will take place at the landmark Café Brauer. Guests will partake in brunch with the big man in red, himself, while taking in the views of the Nature Boardwalk. There will be four seatings starting at 9 a.m. Adults (age 13 and older) are $45, children (ages one to 12) are $20 and tiny tots (12 months and younger) are free. All children can enjoy a complimentary cookie decoration station. 

Chris White Trio Tribute to “A Charlie Brown Christmas” (Dec. 15) features a soulful jazz tribute to a favorite holiday classic. Shows at 5 and 7:30 p.m. at Café Brauer with tickets beginning at $25. 

Zoo Year’s Eve (Dec. 31). This adults-only celebration counts down to 2020 with DJ entertainment, games, and giveaways in the glow of ZooLights. Food and alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase. The event runs from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Early-bird tickets begin at $10.

Family Nights 

Popular Family Nights take place on December 16, 23 and 30. Family Nights include all the ZooLights activities along with free rides on the AT&T Endangered Species Carousel and Lionel Train Adventure. Kids also eat free at Park Place Café (one free limited kid’s menu item with paid adult entrée or combo meal).

Lincoln Park Zoo members of all levels can park free on Family Nights.

Times and dates

ZooLights is FREE entry: Hours: 4:30 to 9 p.m.  When: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights Nov. 29 – 30, Dec. 1, Dec. 6 – 8, Dec. 13 – 15, and then nightly Dec. 16 through Jan. 5 (excluding Dec. 24 and 25).

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