Family Friendly Holidays


by Alex Shutske

You’ve put up the tree, you’ve drank the cocoa, and now you’re looking for something to do that doesn’t involve moving the elf to the other side of the shelf. Here are a few of the best family-friendly holiday outings to enjoy in the Region during the holiday season.

Tree Lighting Ceremony

(Crown Point)November 29,2019 – 5:30 pm
One of my favorite things to do during the holidays is watch the tree lighting
ceremony. Sure, it’s only a couple of minutes but we take our kids and totally
make a night out of it. We head to Carriage Court for dinner because kids always
eat free with the purchase of an adult entrée (Thumbs Up Club, go sign up), and
then walk over to the square to watch the magic.

Christmas Around the World (Chicago)

November 14 th – January 5 th
This annual tradition is just as beautiful as it is educational. Trees are decorated
as they would be from around the world displaying the Holiday traditions of
other cultures.

Holly Daze (Valparaiso)

December 6, 2019
This festival in downtown Valpo doesn’t disappoint. They have everything from
carolers to train rides and the streets are decorated charmingly. You can enjoy
all that Valpo has to offer by checking out all the shops and their open houses
for perfect one of a kind gifts

A Christmas Story (Hammond)

o November 9 th – December 31 st , 2019
If you haven’t checked out “A Christmas Story” Comes Home, you need to.
Located at the Indiana Welcome Center in Hammond, this exhibit displays some of the most iconic scenes from the film. Make sure to check out their website to see more events including the “Mommy’s Little Piggy” eating contest plus others. If you miss this fun and easy outing, you’ll be sure to be saying, “Oh

Winter Market on The Lake (Cedar Lake)

December 6 th , 2019 – 4pm – 8pm and December 7 th ,2019 10am – 3pm
Located in the Oaks Dining Hall lower level at Cedar Lake Ministries (Catalyst
Camps), the market has over 75 booths. If you’ve been to the Cedar Lake
Farmers Market then you know it’s a contender in the Farmers Market world.

Lots of your favorite 219 vendors will be in attendance including Mother
Wilma’s Marshmallow factory and Miss Mary Macs (make sure to eat all the
puppy chow macaroons).

Zoo Lights (Chicago)

It’s Saturday night, you’re going crazy being cooped up with your kids, and you’re broke from Holiday shopping. You need to head to the City for Zoo lights and Lincoln Park Zoo.  I have two words… free admission. Bundle your babes up, go look at the animals, and take in all the gorgeous Christmas lights. Some of the attractions require tickets such as the carousel and the train adventure. But, if you’re on a budget, head there on a Monday for Family Night when the attractions are free!

Tour of Lights (Crown Point)

December 9 th – December 14 th , 2019 5-9pm
Hop on a trolley and take a tour of all the decorated homes in Crown Point
including the infamous Candy Cane Lane. Call the Crown Point event’s office