This is the most authentic Old World Christmas market, with many German vendors who bring over toys, ornaments and sweets. There's a Children's Lantern Parade, appearances by the Christkind and entertainment most days. In Daley Plaza in the Loop.
The free display in Olin Park is open from dusk to dawn.
Tour the retro-cool lighted decorations in Bayfront Festival Park, including a tree that dances to music, Dinosaurland and Penguin Park. Visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus and enjoy popcorn, roasted marshmallows, cookies and hot chocolate. Everything is free, but bring one or more non-perishable food items (and/or cash) to donate.
It's the 84th anniversary of the parade down State Street in the Loop. It starts at 8 a.m. at State and Congress and moves northward toward Randolph.
In this northwest suburb of Chicago, the holiday parade starts at 7 p.m. at City Hall.
The goofier the float, the better in this north-woods town, 12 miles from the north shore of Mille Lacs. There's music, food and a craft sale before and after the 1 p.m. parade.
This Mississippi River town offers horse-drawn carriage rides, reindeer sleigh rides, fire dancing and live penguins. There's a lighted parade at 7:30 p.m., followed by fireworks.
The Chicago Christkindlmarket has a satellite market at the historic Naperville Settlement, with visits from the Christkind, dance performances and a children's lantern parade on Kinder Tag.
This downtown market features vendors in outdoor huts as well as tents for music, German food, gingerbread-decorating and a beer garden.
The fourth year of a downtown holiday village will be in Loring Park and feature free admission, with entertainment that includes ice-skating, holiday movies and band and choir concerts.
In this Minneapolis suburb on Lake Minnetonka, choirs and bands play for shoppers at a traditional German open-air Christmas market.
Five Christmas celebrations, each with a different theme, at Cedar Creek Settlement, a restored 1864 woolen mill in this historic village just north of Milwaukee. Each features live holiday music, crafts, luminaries, wine-tasting and cookies and cider.
This Door County village offers horse-drawn wagon rides, a children's elf hunt and mistle dough contest and caroling.
Enjoy the outdoors and avoid the shopping frenzy by visiting one of Michigan's 103 state parks and recreation areas, where entry will be free. Parking at trailheads also will be free.
Hike off Thanksgiving dinner with free admission to all 75 Minnesota state parks and recreation areas on Black Friday.
There's Lighting of the Lights and music Friday and free horse-drawn sleigh rides, movies and Santa visits Saturday, with the Electric Christmas Parade at 5:30 p.m.