Chicago events calendar for November 2015. Best festivals, fun things to do, Thanksgiving events, holiday lights, kids activities, free entertainment Chicago, Illinois.

Best events for 12 months
Best events for 12 months
November 2015
November 2015

Enjoy the best Chicago events, festivals, and things to do with this calendar of events.

Mileage is from the Wrigley Building in downtown Chicago, Illinois.

Children’s film festival

November 1, 2015 (begins Oct. 23)

Chicago locations

Billed as North America’s largest film festival for children, the Chicago International Children’s Film Festival (CICFF) showcases the best in culturally diverse, non-violent, value-affirming new cinema for children and offers interactive workshops.

Haunted House at Rosemont

November 1, 2015 (also Oct.)

14 miles NW

Disturbia: Screams in the Park [sound] is a 35-room nightmare at MB Financial Park at Rosemont. See hours.

Villa Park nightmare

November 1, 2015 (also Oct.)

21 miles west

Great American Nightmare [sound] is 3 high-tech haunted houses based on Rob Zombie’s horror films for age 13+ in the Odeum Expo Center. See hours.

Haunted farm

November 1, 2015

32 miles SW

The Haunted Barn at Bengtson’s Pumpkin Fest in Homer Glen is fine for mature kids. The Fun Barn will entertain even the youngest children. Also visit the corn maze, kids’ rides, and petting zoo.

Joliet haunted house

November 1, 2015 (also Oct.)

38 miles SW

Take a 40-minute trip through 40 terrifying rooms and play Zombie Paintball at Statesville Haunted Prison & City of the Dead [sound] in Crest Hill. Open Thurs. to Sun. plus Oct. 28.

Horror shows

November 1 - 7, 2015

5 miles north

See murderous and macabre sketch comedy, cabaret, dance, burlesque, and plays at Chicago Horror Theatre Festival at Stage 773.

Morton Grove haunted house

November 1 - 7, 2015

14 miles NW

House of Torment has two themes at 8240 N. Austin Ave. in Morton Grove.

Expand your mind

November 1 - 8, 2015 (begins Oct. 24)

Chicago locations

Chicago Humanities Festival is a series of talks and events that explore the human condition and feature exciting thinkers, artists, and performers. Program.

Film festival

November 1 - 8, 2015 (begins Oct. 28)

Chicago locations

Chicago Festival of Israeli Cinema shows 18 films about Israeli culture at Music Box Theatre, AMC River East, and AMC Northbrook Court, with first-night cocktail reception.

Artists Month

November 1 - 15, 2015

Chicago area

Enjoy performances, exhibitions, films, open studios, demonstrations, and neighborhood art walks during Chicago Artists Month.

Christmas musical

November 1, 2015 - Jan. 3, 2016

18 miles west

See Irving Berlin’s song-and-dance extravaganza White Christmas, based on the classic film, live at Drury Lane Theatre.

Wine tasting

November 5, 2015 (6:30 to 9:30 p.m.)

8 miles NW

Sample 40 wines plus hors d’oeuvres on the Fall Wine Stroll that starts at Dank House. Repeats April.

Dance premiere

November 5 - 8, 2015

1 mile south

Award-winning choreographer Twyla Tharp presents a program of all new work on her 50th Anniversary Tour at Auditorium Theatre.

Ballet-free Nutcracker

November 5 - Dec. 31, 2015

7.4 miles north

Clara struggles to save Christmas in the imaginative, family friendly version of The Nutcracker onstage at the Chopin Theatre.

Comedy film festival

November 6 - 7, 2015

10 miles north

See funny feature films, short films, and student films at Chicago Comedy Film Festival at The New 400 Theaters. Opening reception Friday, after-party Saturday.

Wilder Mansion market

November 6 - 7, 2015

19 miles west

Wilder Mansion Holiday Market has arts, crafts, and seasonal gifts in a historic Elmhurst mansion. Free.

Indoor art market

November 6 - 8, 2015

0.9 miles north

Visit 60 artists and a dozen food vendors at Artisan Market Streeterville at Northwestern University. Free.

Art and design fair

November 6 - 8, 2015 (preview Nov. 5)

1 mile east

Sculpture Objects Functional Art and Design (SOFA) Fair is a curated art exposition of design, fine art, and decorative art at Navy Pier.

Rubber fest

November 6 - 8, 2015

5 miles north

Mr. International Rubber (MIR) is a rubber-fetish event that includes cocktail parties, a rubber/leather market, and awards at the Center on Halsted.

Aquarium show

November 6 - 8, 2015

28 miles NW

Visit the shark encounter, take a fish seminar, shop the vendors, and get tickets for a Saturday dinner at Aquatic Experience at Marriott Renaissance Hotel in Schaumburg.

Polish film festival

November 6 - 22, 2015

Chicagoland locations

The Polish Film Festival in America shows new films by Polish filmmakers from around the world.

Whiskey tasting

November 7, 2015 (12 to 4 p.m.)

0.7 miles west

A ticket to River North Whiskey Festival gets you 30 tastes of whiskeys, bourbons, and scotches at John Barleycorn and Moe’s Cantina.

Chili tasting

November 7, 2015 (5 to 8 p.m.)

3 miles west

Taste 20 meaty and meat-free chilies plus gelato and beer at The Arts of Life Charitable Chili Cook-Off at 2010 W Carroll Ave.

Family lantern festival

November 8, 2015 (2:30 to 5:30 p.m.)

7 miles north

A ticket to Laternenfest and St. Martin’s Parade gets you a lantern kit to assemble and join the parade, with singing, crafts, and a bake sale at Dank Haus.

Baking show

November 13 - 15, 2015

28 miles NW

America’s Baking and Sweets Show has baking competitions, celebrity demonstrations, hands-on classes, vendors, and a family zone at Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center.

Holiday art fair

November 14, 2015 (preview Nov. 13)

0.5 miles SW

Gazebo Holiday Market features local artists selling jewelry, clothing, and food at Block 37. A preview party Fri. & brunch Sat. support the Junior League.

Japanese festival

November 14, 2015

7.6 miles north

JASC Holiday Delight celebrates Kodomo Matsuri with Japanese food, classical dance, Taiko drumming, Ikebana flower arranging, Santa, and a craft sale at Japanese American Service Committee. Free.

Christmas play

November 14 - Dec. 27, 2015

multiple locations

A Christmas Carol is Charles Dickens’ holiday classic about Scrooge, Tiny Tim, and three Christmas ghosts.

French soirée

November 19, 2015

1 mile south

Passport to France celebrates fine gastronomy, French chefs, wines and spirits, culture, and entertainment at the Union League Club.

Playful fashion show

November 19, 2015 (7 to 9 p.m.)

2 miles west

PlayCHIC is a toy-and-game-inspired fashion show of haute couture at Alhambra Palace Restaurant.

German beer

November 19, 2015 (7:30 p.m.)

7 miles north

Learn about German beer styles and beer making, and then sample Doppelbock beer with cheeses at What’s In Bier? at Dank Haus.

French wine tasting

November 19, 2015 (5 to 8 p.m.)

17 miles SW

Walk between restaurants in downtown La Grange to taste 18 to 20 different wines and appetizers during Beaujolais Nouveau Wine Tasting.

Women in jazz

November 19 - 21, 2015 (7:30 p.m.)

12 miles north

Hear three rising stars at the Women in Jazz Festival at Nichols Concert Hall in Evanston.

Villa Park arts & crafts

November 19 - 22, 2015

21 miles west

See hundreds of craft booths at Autumn Festival, an Arts & Crafts Affair in the Odeum Expo Center.

Holidays around the world

November 19, 2015 - Jan. 3, 2016

8 miles south

See trees decorated to represent many cultures plus weekend ethnic song-and-dance performances during Christmas Around the World and Holidays of Light at the Museum of Science & Industry. Closed Nov. 26 & Dec. 25.

Wood-aged beer festival

November 20 - 21, 2015

2.6 miles SW

Enjoy beer with exotic flavors at the Festival of Barrel Aged Beers, billed as the country’s largest celebration of wood-and-barrel-aged beer at UIC Forum, afternoon or evening.

Horror convention

November 20 - 22, 2015

28 miles NW

Days of the Dead includes live music, a monster ball, panels, celebrity signings, contests, and after parties, at Chicago Marriott Schaumburg.

Stamp show

November 20 - 22, 2015

29 miles NW

See postage stamp exhibits and shop from 80 vendors at Chicagopex at the Westin in Itasca. Free.

Christmas market

November 20 - Dec. 24, 2015

1 mile SW

Christkindlmarket is an open-air European holiday market on Daley Plaza featuring traditional art, handmade gifts, German foods, choirs, and carolers. Free.

Christmas lights - arboretum

November 20, 2015 - Jan. 2, 2016

27 miles west

See colorful tree lights and interactive laser lights on a one-mile walk at Illumination, and then warm up at the fire pit at the Morton Arboretum. Closed Dec. 7, 14, 24, 25.

Magnificent Mile Lights Festival

November 21, 2015

Downtown Chicago

The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival begins midday with family events at Lights Festival Lane in Pioneer Court. The Tree-Lighting Parade starts at 5:30 p.m. and runs down Michigan Avenue from Oak Street to Wacker Drive, ending with fireworks. All free.

Book fair

November 21, 2015

1.5 miles south

Chicago Book Expo features local publishers and authors, with a pop-up bookstore, panel discussions, and readings at Columbia College on Wabash. Free.

Toy and game fair

November 21 - 22, 2015

1 mile east

The Chicago Toy & Game Fair features new toys and games, tournaments, stage entertainment, and costumed characters at Navy Pier.

Muscle car show

November 21 - 22, 2015

17 mile NW

Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals is an indoor showcase of 500 high-horsepower cars that includes “unveilings” and events for kids at the Rosemont convention center.

Holiday market

November 21 - Dec. 13, 2015

2 miles west

Randolph Street’s Holiday Market offers affordable antique, vintage, and modern goods indoors at W Randolph & Washington on Nov. 28, 29; Dec. 12, 13.

Classical music in River Forest

November 22, 2015 (4 p.m.)

13 miles west

The Symphony of Oak Park and River Forest plays the Three Bs (Beethoven, Berlioz, and Brahms) at Dominican University.

Christmas tree lighting

November 24, 2015 (6 p.m.)

0.5 miles south

The Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony begins with a music program at 5:30 p.m. in Millennium Park.

Sherlock Holmes

November 24 - 29, 2015

0.5 miles SW

David Arquette plays the famous sleuth of Scotland Yard who must solve a murder in Sherlock Holmes at Oriental Theatre.

Thanksgiving dinner

November 26, 2015

Greater Chicago area

Find a list of restaurants offering special menus for Thanksgiving at the Chicago Tribune and OpenTable.

Thanksgiving Parade

November 26, 2015 (8 to 11 a.m.)

1 mile south

The Thanksgiving Parade features giant balloons, floats, and marching bands that go north on State Street from Congress to Randolph. Free.

Free day at the arboretum

November 26, 2015

28 miles west

Enjoy Free Admission on Thanksgiving Day at the Morton Arboretum in Lisle. (Buildings are closed.)

Thanksgiving run/walk

November 26 & 28, 2015

Greater Chicago area

Games convention

November 27 - 29, 2015

27 miles west

Wolfcon is for players of board games, computer games, and role-playing games at the College of DuPage.

Christmas lights - Lincoln Park Zoo

November 27, 2015 - Jan. 3, 2016

2.5 miles north

ZooLights at the Lincoln Park Zoo features millions of holiday lights, ice carvings, music, carousel and train rides, food, and gift shopping (plus photos with Santa some days). Open Nov. 27-29, Dec. 4-6, 11-23, 26-31, Jan. 1-3. Free entry.

Holiday trains - Lincoln Park

November 27, 2015 - Jan. 3, 2016

3 miles north

Model trains wind their way through a miniature village among Poinsettias during the Winter Flower & Train Show at Lincoln Park Conservatory. Free.

Holiday trains - Botanic garden

November 27, 2015 - Jan. 3, 2016

24 miles north

Wonderland Express features trains running through an indoor garden past miniature buildings at Chicago Botanic Garden. See events schedule. Closed Dec. 25.

Eco-friendly art fair

November 28, 2015

8.7 miles north

Holiday Remix is an arts & crafts market for things remixed, reused, and recycled at Broadway Armory Park in Edgewater. Repeats in June.

Christmas comedy

November 28 - Dec. 20, 2015

2.8 miles SW

Unruly kids take over the church pageant with hilarious results in family-friendly The Best Christmas Pageant Ever at Provision Theater.
< October    change month    December >
contact us

© November 2015 calendar of events in Chicago, IL. Best events, fairs, festivals, and things to do in Chicago, Illinois.