Christmas in Chicago

Chicago at Christmas is a really cool place to be! There’s always a ton of things to see and do. There are great light displays throughout the city and people with carts selling roasted almonds and pecans. If you find yourself in Chicago during the holidays, here are a few things I recommend checking out.

Marshall Field’s was a department store in Chicago in the early 1900s. Today it is a Macy’s, located on State Street. During the holidays, the store creates these elaborate window displays that are awesome to see.

The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival is kind of a big deal. Not only is there a huge parade and fireworks, but there are stages set up where acapella groups perform Christmas carols. And if you have kids, children can visit Santa and get their picture taken with him.

Christkindlmarket is a huge attraction during Christmas. You can find it in Daley Plaza and it is the largest open air market in Chicago. There are a ton of vendors with crafts, gifts and of course, German food. It’s a great place to get your Christmas shopping done!

The Museum of Science and Industry celebrates the holidays with a special exhibition of Christmas Around the World and the Holidays of Light. The museum has over 50 Christmas trees on display to represent Chicago’s ethnic diversity.

Another fun thing to do during the holiday (if you can stand the cold) is to go ice skating in Millennium Park. You can see the epic Chicago Christmas tree too, which stays up through the new year.

With so much going on, it can be a little overwhelming trying to get around the city. There’s tons of people and a lot of places are super crowded. And if there’s snow, it’s even more difficult to get where you need to go! Of course, when you grow up in Chicago, you just get used to it. It’s all part of living in the city.

When it comes to my family and our celebrations, we make the most of the holidays. Our annual traditions involve going over to my grandparents’ house on Christmas Eve. The whole family gets together, including my aunts, uncles and cousins. We play games and exchange gifts. Really, it’s just about being with eachother. On Christmas Day, I spend time with my immediate family. My mother, father, twin brother and sister all get together and have our own special Christmas. Later in the day, we visit my dad’s side of the family for lunch. All the running around can get pretty hectic at times. Still, we make it work.

About Bryan Anderson: Bryan grew up and resides in Illinois. Injured by an IED in October 2005, Bryan is one of the few triple amputees to survive his injuries in Iraq. He is an ambassador for the Gary Sinise Foundation and a spokesperson for USA Cares, which is focused on assisting post 9-11 veterans. Click here to learn more about Bryan.