Tips on getting into the holiday spirit with Visit Champaign County


Champaign County, Ill. (WCIA)

It’s true when they say the holiday season starts immediately after Halloween! Our November calendar is set with activities and events to get us ready for the holidays, a nice to return after a year off from all of these events. Here’s our top ideas to get into the holiday spirit:

Local Arts & Crafts Shopping
November is full of fairs to get you shopping local, supporting our artists and makers. One of the first stops you can hit is the Winter Farmers Market which kicks off this Saturday at Lincoln Square Mall. You’ll still be able to pick up seasonal ingredients from our area farmers plus plenty of gift items to start your holiday shopping. More opportunities open up every weekend this month with the 38th Annual Art Fair from the CU Craft League, November 13–14 at Savoy Rec Center with dozens of local artists, the Mistletoe Market on November 13 in Sullivan with 45 vendors , food trucks and a childcare space! The following weekend, November 20–21,the massive Gifford State Bank Country Christmas Craft Show returns to Gordyville with everything you could possibly need. We’re also very excited to see the Christmas Market, a traditional German Market, return to Riggs Beer Company every weekend following Thanksgiving. They’ll also Mack Glass as he will once again build a glass Christmas tree onsite.

Holiday-Themed Events
The Junior League of Champaign-Urbana is thrilled to bring back their Festival of Trees, November 19–21, at the Hilton Garden Inn. You can get inspired by the many trees and wreaths they’ll have on site which you can also bid on to take home. They’ll also have storytime with Santa & Mrs. Claus both in-person and virtually. Happening right after Thanksgiving, Monticello Main Street will once again host their Reds of Christmas wine-walk around the historic square. You’ll be able to sample some delicious wines while also shopping from the many shops in the district. Get your tickets before they’re gone! Finally, the big Parade of Lights returns to downtown Champaign on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Before the parade steps off at 6pm, you can visit the local businesses for a Candy Crawl, visit with Santa at Big Grove Tavern, or enjoy a carriage ride around downtown. Stay for the parade and the tree lighting at One Main Plaza!

Staying Active
If you’re at all like me, you enjoy a Christmas cookie or two this time of year so getting so exercise in is always a good thing this time of year. The Urbana Park District brings back their popular 54th Annual Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning. Head out to the revitalized Crystal Lake Park for a one-mile run or walk before you settle in for turkey later in the day. The Champaign Park District re-imagined their lighted walk, moving it to Prairie Farm this year. You can take part in Winter Nights at Prairie Farm every Thursday–Sunday from Thanksgiving through the end of the year with an accessible light display. Bring your own cocoa as you wander the area.

Connect with Visit Champaign County HERE.

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