No matter if you have been naughty or nice this year, there are tons of ways to make your holiday season merry and bright in Champaign Center this month. Whether it’s taking advantage of our after-hours shopping nights to knock out your Yuletide needs, spending a day in Whoville with the kiddos, or immersing yourself in all things holiday at our Mistletoe Market, Champaign Center has you covered when it comes to getting into the holiday spirit. So, don your ugly Christmas sweater and get ready to FA- LA-LA-LA-LA your way through out town spreading holiday cheer for all to hear. Keep on scrolling to find out everything going on in Champaign Center this month.
1. Holiday Shop Hop After Hours
December 1, 8, 15, 22 | Downtown & Midtown
You’ve made your list and have checked it twice – now you can start crossing off your gifting needs at the Holiday Shop Hop After Hours. Every Thursday in December, you’re invited to peruse many shops in downtown Champaign that will be staying open late to help you finish off your holiday shopping! Shop local this holiday season and make a magical night of it in Champaign Center. Enjoy FREE Trolley Rides in downtown on Dec. 8, 15, and 22, 5 – 7 PM, thanks to the Champaign Park District.
Every Weekend in December | Prairie Farms, 2202 W. Kirby Ave
Enjoy holiday lights every Thursday through Sunday in December at Prairie Farm. This accessible experience will put the bright in Merry and Bright this season by featuring festive light displays throughout the farm. Free hot cocoa will be available on Friday and Saturday nights thanks to the Champaign Parks Foundation. Donations encouraged to help support Winter Nights at Prairie Farm!
[Click here for more information about Winter Night at Prairie Farms.]
December 3 | Pour Bros. Taproom, Downtown
It’s the season of giving and Pour Bros. Craft Taproom is making their Taproom the place to be to get your giving on. On Dec 3, Pour Bros will be teaming up with Triptych Brewing and Stone Brewing for a coat drive in support of Stratton Academy of the Arts. Bring in coats for the kids and enjoy a few drinks while you’re at it. Reps from Triptych and Stone will be on hand to talk beer and pass out some cool swag and prizes.
4. Meet Santa at the Virginia Theatre
December 7, 15, 19 | The Virginia Theatre, Downtown
Santa Claus is coming to town! Your little ones can get in some early face time with the man in red when you attend the Visit with Santa events happening at the Virginia Theatre throughout December leading up to Christmas. Parents are encouraged to bring their cameras, as Santa will be available for photos during each of his visits. Children of all ages are invited to get in on this magical night with Santa. The free event is sponsored by Hickory Point Bank & Trust!
[Click here for more information about Meet Santa.]
5. 12 Beers of Christmas
December 10 | Esquire Lounge, Downtown
You’re invited to indulge in some day drinking at Esquire Lounge on December 10 to celebrate the triumphant return of the 12 Beers of Christmas at Esquire Lounge. This annual beer tasting fundraiser has proceeds from its sales benefitting Toy for Tots. So make a holly jolly day of it and have a beer for us – after all it’s for the kids!
6. Holiday in Whoville
December 11 | The Virginia Theatre, Downtown
Uncover the true meaning of Christmas with your kiddos when you spend the day at a Holiday in Whoville at The Virginia Theatre. You’ll have multiple chances to catch a screening of the original 1966 short, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, throughout the day as well as grab a quick pic with Santa, sip on some hot cocoa or even grab a trolley ride throughout downtown Champaign. Your heart will grow two sizes larger when you spend your Holiday in Whoville.
7. Mistletoe Market
December 18 | The Venue CU, Downtown
Celebrate the 2nd annual celebration of locally made goods and gifts by attending the Mistletoe Market in Downtown Champaign. You’ll have a chance to soak up all things holiday and support your community at this festive fair. Select local artisans, makers, growers & creators will have their best locally made goods on offer in one cozy & welcoming community space. Shop the best gifts while listening to holiday music! Co-organized by Norden, Pipapo, and 40 North; sponsored by Central Roofing!