THE LOOP — Christkindlmarket will bring holiday cheer to Chicago with its iconic Christmas mugs starting Nov. 17.
The popular holiday market, now in its 27th year, is returning to the same three locations as last year: Chicago at Daley Plaza, 50 W. Washington St.; Wrigleyville at Gallagher Way, 3635 N. Clark St.; and in suburban Aurora.
All three markets feature dozens of vendors, including unique local and international food and merchandise booths for holiday shoppers. Each venue will offer a different souvenir mug with a distinct wintery scene. Visitors can buy them individually at each market or pick up a three-pack at any location. Attendees will also be able to snag a reindeer-themed mug and the market’s first beer stein.
Also for the first time this year, people planning to visit the Chicago market can buy a fast entry pass to skip the line — and to guarantee a souvenir mug will be available for them when they arrive.
A preview party at Daley Plaza on Nov. 16 will herald the three markets’ openings. The Downtown and Aurora markets are set to run until Dec. 24, with the Wrigleyville location lasting another week.
The Downtown location will be open 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Sunday-Thursday and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday-Saturday, with limited hours on Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve. Hours for the Wrigleyville and Aurora market differ slightly and are available online.
Attending Christkindlmarket has become a treasured tradition for many Chicagoans, said Leila Schmidt, the senior manager for marketing and intercultural communication at German American Events, which organizes the markets.
“Just the joy of the holidays, escaping into the most magical holiday village in the heart of Chicago, strolling around, hearing the festive music, seeing all the beautifully decorated booths,” she said. “It’s a really unique experience [to] share with loved ones.”
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