Holiday Events in Evanston
Celebrate the holidays in Evanston all season long
Evanston Symphony Holiday Concert
Sunday, December 2, 2018, 3pm
Evanston Township High School - 1600 Dodge Ave.
Don’t miss enjoying these favorite Yule festivities with your family and friends … and you can take advantage of our special rates for a package of 2 adult tickets and 3 children's tickets.
The award-winning Evanston Symphony Orchestra is joined by:
North Shore Choral Society [learn more]
Evanston Dance Ensemble [learn more]
The Evanston Symphony Holiday Gospel Choir
Evanston Children’s Choir [learn more]
ETHS A Cappella Choir
And, a BIG bonus for all kids from 1 to 101 — a visit from Santa and his elves!
Sundays, December 2, 9, and 16, 1-4 pm
Frances Willard House, 1730 Chicago Ave.
Take a break from the busy holiday season and join us as we turn back the clock and revisit Christmas at the Willard House in 1887. At that time the house served as home to Willard and her mother, and as office space and a dormitory for women working in the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU). Christmas day was an opportunity for the bustling household to take a break from work and enjoy a simple holiday celebration.
The tours will take place on Sundays, December 2, 9 and 16, from 1:00-4:00 p.m. and cost $10 for adults and $5 for students (FWHM members are free for all tours and programs). No RSVP necessary, just drop on by.
Friday, December 5, 5:30pm
Tannenbaum Chabad House invites you to join Mayor Stephen Hagerty and Evanston's civic, business and Jewish communities to Evanston's Public Chanukah Lighting and Celebration. The 10-foot Menorah will be lit at Fountain Square at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 5. There will be music featuring The Cheder Boys Choir and refreshments will be served.
For more information, please call 847-869-8060.
Thursday, December 6
Sip and shop your way throughout downtown Evanston during the 4th Annual Evanston Warm Bevvy Walk on Thursday, December 6 from 5:00 to 8:00 pm. Enjoy an evening stroll with friends and family, stopping at stores to try tasty beverages and shop for the holidays. Throughout the evening, many of the shops will be offering special discounts and promotions to help you cross those gifts off the list!
This event is FREE and open to all ages but please RSVP below so that we can best prepare for the event. There is a suggested donation of $5 for a "We Love Evanston" mug. All proceeds will benefit an Evanston nonprofit to be announced soon.
Downtown Evanston Tree Lighting
Saturday, December 8, 5pm
Celebrate the holiday season at the annual tree lighting with Mayor Hagerty as he lights up the tree! Enjoy special guest performances and holiday treats.
Hope for the Holidays
Wednesday, December 12, 2018
2000 Greenleaf St. Suite 5
Create your own designer centerpiece with Random Acts of Flowers under the direction of award-winning floral designer Andy Zimmerman of Kiko’s Flowers in Park Ridge. Guests will also make additional bouquets for patients in area hospitals. Tickets are $75; refreshments and appetizers will be provided; BYOB.
For details and tickets, visit
CTA Holiday Train on the Purple Line
December 12, 14, 15, & 20
Santa will return to Evanston aboard the CTA Holiday Train, which will visit stops at the along the Purple Line. Then shop and eat downtown with your family! Holiday train timetables TBA. CTA typically announces them a few days in advance.
The Nutcracker on Ice at Robert Crown Center
Robert Crown Center - 1701 Main St.
Wednesday, December 26, 6-8 pm
Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center
Join your friends and neighbors in celebrating the first day of Kwanzaa at Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center in a free celebration for all ages! There will be music, spoken word, and dancing. There will also be the traditional lighting of the Kinara and recitation of the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa.
For more information, please call 847-866-5914.
Mayor's Annual Food & Toy Drive
November 13 - December 14, 2018
To ensure every Evanston family gets to celebrate this holiday season, Mayor Stephen Hagerty is encouraging all community members to participate in the 10th annual Mayor's Holiday Food, Book and Toy Drive.
Through Friday, December 14, the City is collecting new, unwrapped toys that encourage physical and/or social activities, in addition to staple food items for holiday meals, including stuffing, green beans, yams, mac and cheese, corn and corn bread mix. New this year, the City is also collecting new and gently used children's books.
Donate Food & Toys
Donate toys & food items at locations throughout the community
Items can be dropped off at locations throughout the city, including:
For more locations and drop-off hours, visit cityofevanston.org/holidaydonation or call/text 847-448-4311.
Make a tax-deductible cash donation
Tax-deductible financial donations can also be made online or by mail to purchase additional items. To submit your donation quickly and securely online, visit cityofevanston.org/holidaydonation.
For mail-in donations, checks should be made payable to “Evanston Parks Foundation,” and mailed to
Evanston Parks Foundation,
2100 Ridge Ave., Suite 1100,
Evanston, IL 60201.
Community members can also support Mayor Hagerty's Holiday Food, Book and Toy Drive by purchasing holiday greeting cards featuring designs by Evanston students.
Help pack and distribute gift baskets on December 19
Shop Small. Shop Evanston Videos
Take a look and enjoy these videos from Small Business Saturday, 2015!
Cultivate Urban Rainforest & Gallery
Everyone loves plants! Stop by and few living art, exotic plants labeled for pet safety, artist-made gifts and more.
Maya Papaya & Tony Macarony
See Jane Sparkle
Follow Your Nose
Stop by for precious gifts for your four-legged friends.
Squeezebox Books & Music
Shoppers rejoice! Take advantage of 20% off the ENTIRE store. Please note: The sale excludes Black Friday Record Store Day titles.
Stumble & Relish
Looking for something unique this holiday season? Stop by and enjoy 20% off ALL holiday greeting cards (Hanukkah, Christmas, New Years, etc.). Shoppers that spend $30 or more will also receive a FREE tote bag while supplies last.
Shop Local this Small Business Saturday
Hear from Evanston's aldermen about shopping local!
The Collage Cafe
Happy Husky Bakery
Allegro Dance Boutique
Oliver's Trains & Toys
The Spice House
Looking for jewelry this holiday season? Stop by Ayla's Originals.
Bottle & Bottega
Have a fun night out painting and drinking. Stop by Bottle & Bottega!
Hip Circle Studio
Sketchbook Brewing Co.