What’s on your to do list?

Winter break is just around the corner and if you are staying in the Blo/No area (read Bloomington/Normal) you would want to add these events to your “Things to do list”. Click on the event title to find out more information:

First Friday, Once Upon a Christmas Vignette, Christmas Tree Lighting

When: Dec. 7th and 8th

Where: Downtown Bloomington

What:  First Friday – Once Upon a Holiday Live Holiday Window Vignettes. Lighting of Wither’s Tree. Christmas at the Courthouse.

Miller Park Zoo Wild Lights

When: December 8th and 9th

Where: Miller Park Zoo, Bloomington

Time: 5-8 pm

Cost: $7

What: How does the Miller Park Zoo look at night with candles at the Zoo? Come to this 6th annual event and witness hundreds of luminaries around the entire Zoo.

Ugliest Sweater Run

When: December 9th

Where: Miller Park Pavilion

Time: 1-3 pm

Cost: see the link above

What: Put on your best holiday cheer and come out to Miller Park for the 4th annual Ugliest Sweater Run with Bloomington Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts and Fleet Feet Sports. There will be a 1.5 and 3 mile non-competitive run or walk, with prizes awarded for special categories.

Christmas at the Mansions

When: December 9th

Where: David Davis Mansion, Bloomington, IL

Time: 2-5 pm or 5-8 pm

Cost: $15 if bought in advance, $18 at the door

What: The 36-room David Davis Mansion, built in 1872 for Supreme Court justice David Davis and his wife Sarah, offers a dazzling look at Victorian-era Christmas traditions. David Davis and Charles Dickens were connected through Dickens’s holiday tale, A Christmas Carol, and “A Dickens Christmas” is the theme at the mansion this year. Ewing Manor – Bloomington’s only “castle” – built for Spencer Ewing and his wife Hazle Buck Ewing, takes visitors back to the Edwardian era in the earliest years of the 20th century. This year’s third location, the “mystery Christmas house” is sure to delight visitors with its ties to local history and its festive holiday decor!

Cirque Dreams Holidaze

When: December 14th

Where: Grossinger Motors Arena

Time: 7:30 pm

Cost: Tickets start at $38

What: This critically-acclaimed holiday stage extravaganza is a cirque spectacle…Broadway musical…and family show all in one!  Cirque Dreams Holidaze soaring acrobatics, gravity defying feats, elaborate production numbers and illusions will leave you mesmerized.

December Indoors Farmers’ Market

When: December 16th

Where: Grossinger Motors Arena

Time: 10:00 am -12:00 pm

What: Farmers’ Market is moved indoors from December to April from 10 am – 12 pm in the 

Front Street Concourse of the Grossinger Motors Arena, formerly the U.S. Cellular Coliseum. Kyle Yap will be our live entertainment. Come join us to get all the fixings for your holiday meals and get great gifts from our vendors as well. Free parking across from the Arena in the Butler Street lot.

Celebrate the Seasons

When: December 16th

Where: Second Presbyterian Church

Time: 7:30 pm- 9:30 pm

Cost: $19

What:  Violinist and countertenor perform Piazzolla The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires – Vivaldi “Vedró con mio diletto” from Giustino – Selections from Stabat Mater (Mvt 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9) – “Nel profondo cieco mondo” from Orlando Furioso – “Sovente il sole” from Perseo.

Luminaria Sunday at the Dana-Thomas House

When: December 17th

Where: Springfield, Illinois

Time: 5pm-10 pm

What: Visit the Dana-Thomas House (a creation of famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright) as the exterior of the home will be lined with 1,000 candles and guests can take a silent tour of the beautiful interior accompanied by holiday music.

Fleet Feet Sports – Monday Fun Run/Walk

When: Every Monday, starting December 18

Where: Fleet Feet Sports

Time: 6:00 pm

Cost: FREE!

What: Join us for a free fun run & walk every Monday at 6:00 p.m! We have routes from 2 – 4 miles and all paces are welcome.

ISU Chorale: Once Upon A December

When: December 19th

Where: McLean County Museum of History

Time: 7:00 pm

Cost: FREE!

What: Conducted by John M. Koch, the hundred member ISU Civic Chorale will perform seasonal arrangements by Dan Forrest, Howard Helvey, Mark Shepperd, and more. Dress in holiday attire and join us for punch and cookies at intermission! Special performance by Bloomington-Normal’s newest female a cappella group BEAUTIES AND THE BEAT under the direction of Tracy Marie Koch!

State Farm Holiday Classic

When: December 27th-28th

Where: Shirk Center

Time: All day

What: The Holiday Classic is one of the nation’s largest, co-ed high school holiday basketball tournaments. 2017 will mark its 39th anniversary.

The Nutcracker by the Chicago Festival Ballet

When: December 28th

Where: Bloomington Center for Performing Arts

Time: 7:30 pm

Cost: Tickets range from $25 to $45

What: Delight in the story of Clara and her Nutcracker Prince as you never have before. Renowned dancer and choreographer, Kenneth von Heidecke’s Chicago Festival Ballet performs The Nutcracker with powerful jumps, endless turns and beautiful costumes and sets. Dancing mice, toy soldiers and twirling sugarplums are sure to add magic to your holiday season!

New Year’s Eve 80’s Fest

When: December 31st

Where: Hyatt Place Bloomington/Normal

TIme: 7pm-12:30 am

Cost: $38 per ticket, or $70 per pair

What: Grab your parachute pants, jelly shoes, and aqua net and make plans now to be at the BIGGEST, BADDEST, AND BEST PARTY in Blo-No this New Year’s Eve. We’re going to PUMP… YOU UP… To win cash and prizes! Best 80’s gear takes home the following:

-1st place: $100 cash and one night room voucher at the Hyatt Place in Uptown Normal

-2nd place: $25 Starbucks gift card and $50 Meatheads gift card

-3rd place: $50 Original Pancake House of Normal, IL gift card

Each ticket includes 2 drinks, hors d’oeuvres and a champagne toast at midnight! (Plus, you’re entered to win prizes!)

NYE Countdown Party in Peoria

When: December 31st

Where: Downtown Peoria

Time: 6:00 pm-12:15 pm

Cost: TBA

What: Ring in the new year at the NYE Countdown in Downtown Peoria! This exciting new event will feature a midnight ball drop, fireworks, live music from Dexter O’Neal and the Funk Yard, drinks and more. A children’s ball drop will also take place at 7 pm. Skating will also be open from noon- 9pm. Expect to see the brightly lit ball from miles away!

Santa’s Station Carriage Rides

When: December 2-3, 8-10, 15-17, 22-23

Where: Uptown Normal Circle (look for a giant horse!)

Time: Times vary; see schedule

Cost: FREE! But sign up in advance that day to secure a spot

What: Carriage rides are given by same day reservation only. To sign up for a ride, please stop by the booth on the northeast side of Uptown Circle just prior to the advertised start time for that day. Rides last approximately 5-10 minutes.

PNC Winterfest in Peoria

When: throughout December

Where: Peoria

Cost: rental skates!

What: This holiday event will give central Illinois the chance to enjoy outdoor ice skating in the heart of Downtown Peoria! PNC Winterfest will feature a 60ft x 80ft Real Ice Rink that will be ready for you to skate in any type of weather! Bring your own skates or rent them from the skate shack. Spectators can watch the action from a heated tent with seating and refreshments. PNC Winterfest will also feature Peoria’s only 6ft wide slide made of ice! Sliders will slide down on a disc, making it fun for all ages! Holiday market will be filled with local vendors and a tie in with local charities.

Movie Showings in Uptown Normal THeatre

/See link for more details/

Great movies to watch in December: It’s A Wonderful Life ~~ Dec. 15th, 17th, 21st, 23rd ; White Christmas ~~Dec. 14th, 16th, 22nd, 24th; Holiday ~~ Dec. 12th, 16th; Loving Vincent ~~ Dec. 10th.

Movie Showings at Wehrenberg Marcus Theatre in December

Don’t miss $5 Tuesdays!

Ferdinand ~~ CoCo ~~ Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle ~~ The Greatest Showman ~~ Pitch Perfect 3 ~~ Star Wars VIII ~~ A Christmas Story ~~ White Christmas

Ice Skating at the Pepsi Ice Center

When: Throughout December

Where: Downtown Bloomington

Time: Check out the schedule in the link

Cost: $6 – entry, $2 per  one pair of skate rental

What: A wide variety of opportunities for skaters of all ages, skill levels, and interests will be offered. Be sure to look for special themed nights offered during Open Skate. Skate Rental is available for a minimal fee.

ISU Bowling

When: Monday through Sunday

Where: ISU Bowling and Billiards Center

Time: See schedule in the link above

Cost: $1.75 per game, $1.25 for a pair of shoes

What: Visit the Illinois State University Bowling and Billiards Center at the Bone Student Center. You’ll enjoy bowling, billiards, table tennis, and more, all at great, affordable prices. 

Upper Limits Rock Climbing

When: Most of December

Where: Upper Limits in Bloomington

Time: Check Schedule in the link 

Cost: ~$35 for a day

What: From our 65′ silos, main climbing area of overhanging terrain, outdoor boulder, 110′ outdoor wall, and six auto belays. We offer a large selection of classes and can accommodate any skill level. Whether you’re a complete beginner, experienced, or looking for a group activity, Upper Limits has got you covered.

World Championship Ice Racing

When: January 6th

Where: Grossinger Motors Arena

Time: 7:00 pm

Cost: Tickets start at $17

What: World Championship ICE Racing, presents The 2018 Next Generation Fire On Ice Tour, at the Grossinger Motor Arena for one night only on Saturday, January 6th at 7:00 p.m. Featuring the biggest names in professional motorcycle ICE racing and the craziest riders on ice racing wild Unlimited Outlaw Quads and so much more. These racers will be blazing around the arenas solid ice track shredding the ice with over 2,000 razor sharp studs in their tires, hitting insane speeds; going from 0-60 mph in less than 3 seconds, all racing for the most prestigious World Championship ICE Racing Title and the Bloomington Belt. Guest appearance by 4-time Guinness Record Holder; daredevil & professional stunt rider Ryan S.

Rock n Roll Tribute from Elvis to the Beatles

When: January 13th

Where: Bloomington Center for Performing Arts

TIme: 7:30 pm

Cost: $20

What: The Neverly Brothers, accompanied by narrative historical footnotes, illustrate how the music and energy of the 1950’s American Rock ‘n Roll pioneers set the stage for the adventurous young bands of the 1960’s British Invasion movement. Their collection consists of show-stopping renditions of early hits by Jerry Lee Lewis, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Buddy Holly, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, The Dave Clark Five and many more.

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