The holiday season is here! With so many activities going on in and around Naperville, our staff decided to share some of their favorite ways to celebrate the holidays. Here’s our list:
Starting Nov. 25, shop for unique gifts at the annual Christkindlmarket at Naper Settlement in Naperville. Among the many vendors are companies like Bethlehem Nativity Products, German Steins & Souvenirs, Tata’s Pierogi and Viktoria Anna Ornaments. Shop for goodies Thursday through Sunday from Nov. 25 to Dec. 18 and then daily from Dec. 19 to Christmas Eve.
Little Friends Parade of Lights
The holiday season in Naperville kicks off with the Little Friends Parade of Lights on Nov. 27. During this annual event, holiday-themed floats and tree lighting celebrations partner with Santa’s arrival. The parade starts at 6 p.m., so there’s plenty of time to enjoy a Japanese meal at Shinto before you head outside to view the merriment.
Naperville Christmas Cookie Walk
The very first Christmas Cookie Walk took place in 2015. The sold-out event was immensely popular and is back for the second year! The Naperville Christmas Cookie Walk takes place Dec. 4 and requires a ticket. With your ticket, you get a commemorative cookie tin to fill with Christmas cookies from participating vendors. You can buy tickets at Country Curtains or the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce.
Northern Holiday Lights Trolley Tour
Take an hour-long trolley ride and view holiday lights at private homes in Naperville. The trolley rides start on Royal Street and circle through the city, passing by several festival holiday light displays. Trolleys are heated for your comfort, so you won’t have to worry too much about getting cold. If you’re thinking of going on a trolley ride, go ahead and buy your tickets now. Many of the tours sell out in advance.
Shopping in Downtown Naperville
Home to more than 100 locally owned and chain retailers, Downtown Naperville offers one-stop shopping for all your holiday needs. Many stores open early on Black Friday and feature early-bird discounts to those who venture out on this busy day. Small Business Saturday, which falls on Nov. 26 this year, promotes Downtown Naperville’s small businesses, many of whom have special savings in store for shoppers. Consider purchasing a gift card that’s good at all Downtown Naperville’s retailers.
Sushi with Santa
Finally, head to Shinto Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi Lounge on Dec. 16 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. to meet Santa. You’ll enjoy Shinto’s sushi, tempura and other Japanese delicacies during this festive night out. After your meal, find the perfect gift for the loved ones in your life in the form of a Shinto gift card! For every $25 in gift cards you purchase, Shinto Japanese Steakhouse & Sushi Lounge will chip in an additional $5. Buy as many gift cards as you’d like and enjoy this bonus through Dec. 30.