Archive for Holidays

Hullabaloo at Howard Street Farm – Sat. Oct. 22

The Talking Farm hosts
The 6th annual 
Saturday, October 22, 2016
12 p.m.-5 p.m.

Join our Celebration of Harvest and Community!

Since 2011, we’ve opened up our Howard Street Farm every fall for a community celebration. The HULLABALOO is our way of celebrating autumn, harvest and progress we made in building the Howard Street Farm from weed to seed.

This year’s Hullabaloo will open with PUMPKINS! Grab a pumpkin at noon and stay to decorate it!

Emcees Mike Nowak of The Mike Nowak Show and Peggy Malecki of Natural Awakenings Magazine will guide you through the day’s activities.

We are excited to announce two storytelling sessions by Elysabeth Ashe. Elysabeth tells nature folktales and spooky stories that tantalize the imagination and stir the senses. Elysabeth has performed at festivals, conferences, nature centers, and academic settings for almost twenty years. She is also the Youth Programs Director at the Jewish Council Youth Services and an experiential educator with a primary focus on team-building.

Schedule of Activities

12 noon  Pumpkin Sales begin

1 pm Strictly Jug Nuts

1:30 Story telling by Elysabeth Ashe

2:00 The Old Town School Community Choir

2:30 Strictly Jug Nuts

3:00  Story telling by Elysabeth Ashe

3:30  Tell ’em Henry

All-Day Activities

Antique Cider pressing by Ben Harris
Pumpkin decorating
Farm Tours

Details: All are welcome.* Family-friendly. Casual. $5 suggested donation per person/$20 per family. Pumpkins $6-$8 each.

The Howard Street Farm is located at 3669 Howard Street in Skokie, behind the Tot Learning Center. Free parking onsite.

All proceeds raised from the Hullabaloo support The Talking Farm, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization that operates the Howard Street Farm.

Special thanks to the Skokie Park District for helping us host this event.



Although we have had no bona fide “scary” clown sightings here, as reported in other jurisdictions, we have had two incidents that we are currently investigating involving “scary” clown activity over social media.  With Halloween quickly approaching, we would like to take this opportunity to send a message to parents and children in reference to “scary” clown incidents.

The Evanston Police Department takes these reports seriously and they are fully investigated.  Parents should speak with their children and let them know that there can be serious consequences in copycat activity involving clown threats whether in-person or via the internet.  What can start out as a prank can quickly spiral into a serious situation, and can result in the unwanted attention of law enforcement and/or a private citizen who may feel threatened.

It is not illegal to wear a clown costume in public, but parents are encouraged to carefully consider whether a clown costume is appropriate.  No matter what costume is being worn, we would like to remind residents to be respectful and not intimidate or harass others during this Halloween season.

As always, the Evanston Police Department will be out this Halloween to make sure that everyone can have a safe and happy Halloween.

If you need immediate police assistance, dial 911.  You can also reach the police desk by calling(847) 866-5000 or utilize Text-A-Tip at CRIMES (274637) and entering EPDTIP in the message line with the tip information.

Gather: Spook-tacular Halloween Party! – Sat. Oct. 29

Saturday, October 29th, 9:30am-noon

It’s not too late to get your tickets for our annual Spook-tacular family fun event! Be sure to wear your costumes and join us for a magic show by the Incredible Greg beginning at 10:45; storytelling by Kennedy Center teaching artist, children’s poet & educator, Karen Erickson; a fun photo area; art making, creative play, and of course festive snacks! This event sold out last year, so please get your tickets in advance.

RSVP now by calling 847-859-2312 or click the link below. $25 for a family of three (two children & one adult or two adults and one child), $7 for each additional family member.

Gather, 602 Davis Street, Evanston, IL 60201

register now

Boo Bash @ Goldfish Swim School – Sat. Oct. 22

gss-mummy-fishWhat: BOO Bash at Goldfish Swim School Evanston

When: Saturday, October 22, 2016 from 4:00-6:00 p.m.

Where: Goldfish Swim School Evanston- 2008 Dempster St, Evanston, IL 60202

Details: Event highlights include open swim, crafts, games, snacks, trick-or-treating and more! Come in your costume for FREE admission! $5/child (max $15 per family) without costume

For more information:


ESCCA’s 25th Annual Pumpkin Patch – Sat. Oct.. 15

Come and pick your pumpkins on Saturday, October 15, from 8am – 2pm at Independence Park (across from EPL North Branch and Foodstuff on Central Street).

All money raised will be donated to ESCCA (Evanston School Children’s Clothing Assoc.) to purchase jeans, shoes and underclothes for District 65 children in need.

Indigenous Peoples’ Day – Mon. Oct. 10

Mitchell Museum of the American Indian is offering a variety of programming in honor of Indigenous Peoples’ Day:

10am-5pm Free Museum Admission

1-2:30pm Indigenous Peoples’ Day Panel – includes Scotti Clifford, Patty Loew, and Rafeal Reza

7-9pm Indigenous Peoples’ Day Concert – Scatter Their Own, Sones de Mexico, Mark Cleveland
Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, Northwestern University
Tickets $15 if purchased by 09/30 or $20 after


4th of July Activities in Evanston

The Evanston Fourth of July Association has planned a terrific Independence Day celebration for Monday, July 4, 2016 with fun activities all day and evening.

Community members are encouraged to share photos of their Independence Day festivities with the Evanston Fourth of July Association on Facebook and Instagram using #ETown4th. Submissions may be featured online and in future materials. Winners may qualify for VIP seating at the 2017 fireworks and parade or may be invited to serve as a Parade Judge or Association Trustee.

Playground Activities
Events will begin at 9 a.m. with roller skating and refreshments at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center, located at 1655 Foster St., and family playground activities at seven Evanston locations: Lincolnwood School, 2600 Colfax St.; Willard School, 2700 Hurd Ave.; Robert Crown Center, 1701 Main St.; Kamen East Park, South Blvd. and Barton Ave.; Baker Park, Forest Ave. and Keeney St.; ETHS Track Area, 1600 Dodge Ave. (change of location due to construction at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Literary and Fine Arts School); and Raymond Park, Chicago Ave. and Lake St. Playground activities include Frisbee, jump rope competitions, sack races, pie eating contests, soccer ball kick for distance competition, and more. View playground activities schedule.

Fun Run
Children age 12 years and younger are invited to take part in the half-mile Kids Fun Run. Participants can register online or on race day from noon to 12:30 p.m. The run begins at 12:45 p.m. at Ackerman Park, located at Central St. and McDaniel Ave. The $10 registration fee includes a t-shirt and packet to the first 200 registered, plus finish line refreshments. All proceeds benefit the Evanston Fourth of July Association.

Tennis Tournament
The finals of the citywide tennis tournament managed by the Evanston Tennis Association will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Ackerman Park.

The award-winning Evanston 4th of July Parade begins at 2 p.m. on Central St. at Central Park Ave. and travels east to Ryan Field. Lawn chairs may be placed on the parkway along Central St. beginning at 6 a.m. on Friday, July 1, in accordance with City ordinance. As a reminder, chairs and blankets are not permitted on sidewalks or in the right-of-way. The 2016 parade theme is “The Fourth Awakens.”

Concert & Fireworks
The Palatine Concert Band will perform from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Dawes Park, located at Sheridan Rd. and Church St. Lakefront fireworks set to music will begin at approximately 9:15 p.m.; tune in to FM 90.5. Fireworks are visible from most lakefront parks.

Free parking will be available in downtown Evanston public parking lots. for locations and more information.

The Evanston 4th of July Celebration is organized by the Evanston Fourth of July Association, a private, volunteer group. All aspects of the celebration are funded by voluntary contributions from businesses and individuals. For more information, visit

Easter Skating Party @ Robert Crown – Sun. March 27

Join us on Robert Crown Community Center’s Main Rink for an Easter Sunday Skating Party!

The “Jelly Bean Count” prize will be announced during the event and there will be a special guest appearance by the Easter Bunny!

The skate will be Sunday, March 27, from 2-4 p.m., at the Robert Crown Community Center, 1701 Main St. For more information, see the flyer, here.

Arboretum Egg Hunt Set – Sat. March 26


The Evanston Ecology Center’s annual egg hunt will be held in the Ladd Arboretum on Saturday, March 26. Sessions will begin at 10 a.m. and continue until 3:30 p.m. The Arboretum is adjacent to the Ecology Center, 2024 McCormick Blvd., Evanston.

Birds in the arboretum have misplaced their eggs, and need the help of youngsters (18 months and up) to find them. Bring a basket or bag for collecting. A special area is reserved for egg hunters 18 months to 3 years, as well as for children with special needs. Egg hunters must pre-register online for class #113130 at, by calling the Ecology Center at 847-448-8256, or by emailing The cost is $5 per Evanston resident and $7 per nonresident.

10-11 a.m.
11:30-12:30 p.m.
1-2 p.m.
2:30-3:30 p.m.

Photos with the Easter Bunny – Sat. March 19

ESCCA - Easter Bunny

Scatter Love Card Making Event – Sat. Feb. 13

Create inspiring cards with motivational messages!
Join us at Chiropractic First
1609 Chicago Ave,
on Sat. Feb. 13
from 12:30pm to 2:00pm
for crafting and  creating loving cards.

Create a card, or several, and then scatter the crafted cards in public spaces to be found by the people who need your message the most.

Come hang out with Dr. Meggie of Chiropractic First and Lindy Stockton of The Collage Cafe. Laughter, fun, and scattering love…. it doesn’t get any better.

Suitable for all ages and all skill levels. Event is free and open to the public. The event is offered in conjunction with for the Downtown Evanston Show the Love event.

Chinese New Year Storytime @ EPL – Sat. Feb. 6

Saturday, February 6, 3 pm Community Meeting Room, Main Library

周六(2月6日), 下午3点  社区活动室

Bring the whole family to our Chinese New Year/Year of the Monkey Storytime and Celebration in two languages! We will hear a Monkey King story, enjoy making Year of the Monkey crafts and the children will march in a monkey-themed Lion Dance parade.

讲故事,庆新年。中国猴年故事会        全家一起来参加中国农历新年双语故事会!


Bessie Rhodes and ETHS Mandarin students especially invited.

Both Chinese and English speakers welcome. 不论你说中文还是英文,我们都热诚欢迎你的参与。

MLK Day Events in Evanston – Jan. 16-26

Saturday, January 16
Day of Celebration Honoring the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 
12 p.m. at Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center, 1655 Foster St.
Fleetwood-Jourdain Theatre and Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center will celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. through music, dance and excerpts from his speeches. The day promises to be inspiring and entertaining, with many special guest artists and esteemed speakers. Admission is free and open to the public.

Sunday, January 17
MLK Day Event with Insight Arts
1-2:15 p.m. at the Evanston Public Library, Community Meeting Room (First Floor), 1703 Orrington Ave.
The Evanston Art Center and Insight Arts join in a program dedicated to Martin Luther King, Jr.

“11 Months” Wrap Up Celebration
3 p.m. at the Evanston Public Library, Community Meeting Room (First Floor), 1703 Orrington Ave.
“11 Months” of speakers, films, play readings and author talks, all focused on African American culture in the US concludes on Sun., Jan. 18. Please join us for a celebratory finale, with food from Curt’s Cafe, August Wilson scene readings from the theatre community, and a special performance by Evanston’s own S.O.U.L. Creations. We will also salute and thank all of the wonderful speakers and performers who helped make this past year so special.

To register for the event, call 847-448-8620 or click here >>>

Monday, January 18
Day of Service
8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Northwestern University
Northwestern students will engage in a variety of service projects throughout Evanston and Chicago area. During lunch students will have the opportunity to reflect over their experience.

Diverse Communities United – Realizing King’s Vision Today
1:00-2:30 p.m. at Evanston Township High School
Join us for Y.O.U.’s 10th annual Diverse Communities United (DCU), a celebration of peace, diversity, unity, leadership, and service held on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The event will feature artistic performances by youth from 11 schools across Evanston and Skokie who seek to realize Dr. King’s vision today.

The event is free, family-friendly and open to all ages. A community reception will be held in the lobby outside of the auditorium immediately following the program, showcasing youth artwork.

MLK Day Celebration Movies: Martin’s Big Words and March On!
1:30-2 p.m & 2:15-2:45 the Evanston Public Library, Barbara Friedberg Storytelling Room (First Floor), 1703 Orrington Ave.

“Martin’s Big Words,” by Doreen Rappaport

Using quotes from some of his beloved speeches, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. comes to life in this profound and important biography about beliefs and dreams and following one’s heart.

“March On!” by Dr. Christine King Farris

In celebration of the of the March On Washington, Martin Luther King, Jr.’s sister presents a personal, stirring account of the remarkable day Dr. King delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech, and of the man who went on to inspire a nation.

Presence Saint Francis Hospital Celebrates the Legacy of MLK
2 p.m. at the Presence Saint Francis Hospital auditorium, 355 Ridge Ave.
Rev. Mark A. Dennis, Jr. will discuss the cultural significance of King’s contributions and achievements, and the impact it has made in the 21st century. Soprano soloist Brenda Marie Turner will sing inspiring songs.

MLK Day Program
3 p.m. at the Evanston Public Library, Children’s Room (First Floor), 1703 Orrington Ave.
Join us to remember and celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with Rev. Eddie Reeves’ moving interpretation of Dr. King’s “I Have A Dream” speech.

Campus Observance: Candlelight Vigil
7 p.m. at Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Rd.

Student Oratorical Contest 
Time: 4:00 p.m., Norris University Center’s McCormick Auditorium (1999 Campus Drive)
Three Northwestern undergraduate finalists will recite their orations inspired by MLK, with entertainment between orations. The winner will have the opportunity to recite their oration at the MLK commemoration keynote event on January 25th at Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The event is free and open to the public. Please see the Oratorical Contest page for more information on contest guidelines.

Monday, January 26
Campus Observance: Keynote Speaker Diane Nash
6 p.m. at Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Dr.
Join us for this University-wide observance featuring music and performances by Northwestern student groups and a keynote address delivered by civil rights and peace activist Diane Nash. Sign language interpreted event.

For other Northwestern University events, click here >>>

Happy Holidays to You and Your Family!


Celebrate Kwanzaa in Evanston – Sat. Dec. 26


Evanston community members are invited to celebrate the first day of Kwanzaa at two free events on Saturday, December 26.

“A Community Celebration of Kwanzaa”
Beginning at 11 a.m. in Fountain Square, “A Community Celebration of Kwanzaa” will feature music, songs, the traditional lighting of the Kinara, and the recitation of principles. The event is hosted by the Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center and the City of Evanston’s Recreation Division. Admission is free.

Fountain Square is located on Davis St. between Orrington and Sherman Avenues in downtown Evanston. For more information, please call 847-448-8254.

“A Kwanzaa to Remember”
At noon, community members are invited to learn the meaning of love, unity and the power of faith during a free performance of “A Kwanzaa to Remember” at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center, located at 1655 Foster St. The performance will feature a multicultural cast of Evanston children of all ages performing skits, singing songs, and reciting poetry that celebrate the seven principles of Kwanzaa.

For more information, please call/text 847-448-4311. For convenience, residents may simply dial 3-1-1 in Evanston.


GOALed Gallery Holiday Sale – Sat. Dec. 19

It’s your final chance to buy something from a fabulous young Evanston Artist. on Saturday, December 19th, at the indoor farmers market. Cool anime drawings, warm hand knit scarves, exquisite beaded earrings, miniature paintings, and tiny origami sculptures so small they look like beads.Very affordable. Buy local, support community creativity. Tell your friends. (and if you have a creative crafty kid in your house, contact Angela Allyn at the City of Evanston — GOALed Gallery is always looking for young artists for our tent at Lakeshore Arts Festival in the summer.)


Grand Chanukah Menorah Lighting and Celebration – Thurs. Dec. 10

On Thursday, December 10, beginning at 5:30 p.m., community members are invited to join Evanston Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl and other civic, business and community leaders for the Grand Chanukah Menorah Lighting and Celebration at Fountain Square, located on Davis St. between Orrington and Sherman Avenues.

The ceremony will celebrate the triumph of light over darkness, good over evil, and freedom of conscience over oppression. Attendees will enjoy musical entertainment and free refreshments.

For more information, please contact the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department at 847-866-2914.

FREE Community Movie Night: Elf – Sat. Dec. 5

elfSt. Mark’s is delighted to invite all of Evanston to join us for a free movie night – complete with popcorn! Doors open at 6:45 p.m. Hope to see you here!

Sat. Dec. 5, 7:00pm – 9:00pm
St. Mark’s Episcopal Church
1509 Ridge Ave, Evanston, Illinois 60201

More information


All Aboard the CTA Holiday Train

It’s that time of year to get into the holiday spirit and catch a ride on the Sprint CTA Holiday Train! Santa and his elves will ride the train passing out candy canes and season’s greetings.

The spectacular train is an amazing sight – during the daytime and at night. The outside of the six-car train is adorned with holiday seasonal images. Thousands of twinkling lights outline the shape of the train and windows, with even more lights running across the tops of the cars.

Interiors of the cars are decked out with thousands of multi-colored lights, red bows, garland, and red and green overhead lighting. The hand poles are wrapped to look like candy canes.

As the train pulls into each station, Santa waves to the boarding passengers from his sleigh on an open-air flatcar carrying his reindeer and decorated holiday trees.

See also: Sprint CTA Holiday Bus


The Sprint CTA Holiday Train will travel all ‘L’ lines in November and December as part of regular rail service. Normal CTA fares apply.

The train generally operates from about 1pm to 8pm on weekends and 3pm to 7pm on select weekdays (schedules for each rail line will vary), and will make stops at all stations along the respective routes.

See schedules and more information for riders 

Happy Thanksgiving to Evanston Families!

Enjoy your Thanksgiving with this little trivia quiz:


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