Holiday fun for families and little ones
Books on Stage
Nov 17-18, 11am, 3pm and 5pm Sat, 3pm Sun. A children’s ballet by the Springfield Youth Performance Group. Sensory-friendly performance at 11am Sat. $5. Hoogland Center for the Arts, 420 S. Sixth St., 523-2787.
Memorial’s Festival of Trees
Nov 17-25, 10am-8pm Mon-Wed and Fri-Sat, 4-8pm Thu, 10am-5pm Sun. Nine-day holiday event featuring more than 200 creatively decorated trees and wreaths plus so much more. $5 adults, $3 ages 3-12, free to ages 2 and under. memorialmedical.com. 788-4700. Orr Building, Illinois State Fairgrounds, 801 Sangamon Ave., 725-8047.
Listening to Visual Art
Nov 18, 2:30-3:15pm Sun. Look for clues in some of the Art of Illinois exhibition’s paintings that help us “see” sounds and movement. Tour is designed for families with children ages 3-12. Registration. Free. illinoismansion.org. Illinois Governor’s Mansion, 410 E. Jackson St., 782-6450.
Intro to Contemporary Parents
Nov 19, 26, Dec 3, 10, 17, 7-8pm Mon. Parents learn how to build a child safety file and discover why it is important. Free. Decatur Township Community Room, 1620 S. Taylorville Road, Decatur, 464-0406.
The Polar Express Pajama Party
Nov 23-25, 5:30pm Fri-Sat, 1pm Sat, 3pm Sun. Enjoy crafting, hot cocoa, a screening of The Polar Express and a visit with a special North Pole guest. Pajamas encouraged. $15 advance, $20 day of. atthelegacy.com. The Legacy Theatre, 101 E. Lawrence, 800-838-3006.
Fun Frosty Friday
Nov 23, 10am-1pm Fri. Featuring fun for the entire family such as planes, trains, automobiles, face painting, balloon art, photos with Santa, a life-sized Candy Land adventure and more. Free. presidentlincoln.illinois.gov. Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum, 212 N. Sixth St., 558-8844.
Sunday Matinee: Pocahontas
Nov 25, 2pm Sun. Showing of Pocahontas. Film is rated G. lincolnlibrary.info. Lincoln Library, 326 S. Seventh St., 753-4900.
A Christmas Carol: The Musical
Nov 30, Dec 1-2, 7-9, 8pm Fri-Sat, 2pm Sun. Play about Ebenezer Scrooge, who is forced to face his selfish ways when three ghosts on Christmas Eve lead him through his past, present and future. $18, $20. springfieldtheatrecentre.com. Hoogland Center for the Arts, 420 S. Sixth St., 523-2787.
Garden Family Adventures
Dec 2, 1-4pm Sun. Hands-on nature activities for families relating to a monthly topic. December’s theme is “All about LMG.” Free. lincolnmemorialgarden.org. Lincoln Memorial Garden, 2301 E. Lake Shore Dr., 529-1111.
Babes in the Woods
Dec 4, 11am-12pm Tue. An adult-paced hike designed for parents and caregivers who carry their children. Not recommended for young children who walk. Free. Lincoln Memorial Garden, 2301 E. Lake Shore Dr., 529-1111.
Teen Advisory Board
Dec 7, Jan 4, Feb 1, 5pm Fri. Teens ages 13-18 are invited to share their ideas for community projects or activities. Rochester Public Library, 1 Community Dr., Rochester, 498-8454.
Victorian Christmas Tea
Dec 8, 2-3:30pm Sat. Sing carols, share holiday stories, and learn about 19th century holiday traditions and practices over tasty tea and delectable desserts. $25 SAA members, $30 non. springfieldart.org. Edwards Place, Springfield Art Association, 700 N. Fourth St., 523-2631.
Photos with Santa
Dec 8-22, 5-8pm Mon-Fri, 11am-6pm Sat-Sun. Meet and have photos taken with Santa. Free admission. No charge for photos taken with own camera; $5 for souvenir photo. springfieldparks.org. Robin Roberts Stadium, 1415 N. Grand Ave. E., 753-0700.
Dec 8-9, 7pm and 2pm Sat, 2pm Sun. Featuring elaborate scenery, colorful costumes, exquisite dancing and beautiful music. Presented by the Springfield Ballet Company. $17, $27, $37. springfieldballetco.org. Sangamon Auditorium, UIS, 1 University Plaza, 206-6160.
The Harlem Globetrotters
Dec 9, 3pm Sun. An exhibition basketball team that combines athleticism, theater and comedy in their style of play. $25.50-$275.50. theboscenter.com. Bank of Springfield Center, 1 Convention Center Plaza, 800-745-3000.
Caroling at the Carillon
Dec 9, 4-5pm Sun. Gather around a roaring bonfire and sing holiday carols accompanied by carillon bells. Free admission; includes refreshments. carillon-rees.org. Thomas Rees Memorial Carillon, 1740 W. Fayette Ave., 546-3853.
A Charlie Brown Christmas Live on Stage
Dec 12, 7:30-9:30pm Wed. A new touring production of Charles Schulz’s timeless story about the spirit of Christmas. $25-$59. sangamonauditorium.org. Sangamon Auditorium, UIS, 1 University Plaza, 206-6160.
The Polar Express Experience
Dec 14-16, 6pm Fri-Sat, 2pm Sun. Enjoy hot chocolate and a cookie, a viewing of The Polar Express and a visit with St. Nick and other The Polar Express characters. Pajamas encouraged. $10 at door. arleetheater.com. 691-7229. Arlee Theater, 139 S. Main St., Mason City, 482-9999.
ISO’s Holiday Pops in the Heartland
Dec 15, 7:30pm Sat. The Illinois Symphony Orchestra performs the soundtrack to the animated film adaptation of Raymond Briggs’ holiday classic, The Snowman. ilsymphony.org. Sangamon Auditorium, UIS, 1 University Plaza, 206-6160.
Art of Illinois Sculpture Safari
Dec 16, 2:30-3:15pm Sun. Explore some of Illinois’ abstract sculptures from different angles. Tour is designed for families with children ages 3-12. Registration. Free. illinoismansion.org. Illinois Governor’s Mansion, 410 E. Jackson St., 782-6450.
Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic
Dec 22-23, 10:30am and 2:30pm Sat-Sun. A live performance where Elmo learns that you can do anything you set your mind to if you just keep trying. $15+. theboscenter.com. Bank of Springfield Center, 1 Convention Center Plaza, 800-745-3000.
First Night Springfield kids’ activities
Dec 31, 1-4pm Mon. Complimentary entertainment and hands-on activities for kids, including table crafts, clay sculpture, wood-craft kits, face painting, plus a puppet show, harmonica lessons and more. Free. springfieldartsco.org. Springfield High School, 101 S. Lewis St., 525-3100.