Let's take this outside: Outdoor holiday activities at the Chicago Botanic Garden, Morton Arboretum and Lurie Garden

Yeah, yeah, so it's December and it is cold now. But if you bundle up, there is still lots of holiday fun to be had outdoors.

Lurie Garden in Millennium Park.
The Lurie Garden isn't just a summertime destination. There are plenty of great family workshops you can take advantage of throughout the winter. On Saturday, Decmeber 5, take part in the From Brrr to Beautiful: Winter Magic Family Workshop from 2:00 4:00 p.m.. Kids can tour the garden and then sip hot cocoa while making seasonal decorations. The group meets up in the Garland Room at the Chicago Cultural Center before heading over to the garden. This activity is for children age 6 and up and pre-registration is required.

Chicago Botanic Garden.
The real question is what can't you do at the Chicago Botanic Garden's Winterland Express? They have ice skating, snowshoeing, dinner with Santa, breakfast with Santa, and hot cocoa with Mrs. Claus. That is in addition to the thousands of lights, decorations, and a 10,000-square-foot exhibition of miniature trains winding over bridges, under trestles, past waterfalls, and through more than 80 mini-replicas of Chicago's favorite landmarks inside the Regnstein Center.

On December 13th, families can take part in the Hanukkuh Dinner and Concert offered at 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The event includes a buffet, access to the Winter Wonderland, ice skating tickets and holiday treats. See the website for details on how to purchase tickets.

The Chicago Botanic Garden also offers a Winter Break Camp option for kids ages 5 through 8 from December 28-30th.

The Morton Arboretum. Similarly, The Morton Arboretum in Lisle is also a busy place during the winter. Visitors can enjoy snowshoeing and cross country skiing. Holiday highlights include elegantly decorated trees and a holiday-themed train display. Kids can search for 24 gnomes hidden in the Children's Garden or take a Nature Hike. On Sunday, January 3rd, families can participate in the 32nd annual Hunt for the Yule Log (or Yule "twig" for little ones).

You don't want to miss out on all of this holiday fun while you are cooped up indoors. So dig out the snowsuits and get out there.

Check back next week for information on the Chicago Park District's very excellent Polar Adventure Days Program at Northerly Island (another one that you are going to want to bundle up for).


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