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Since us college students will soon have a whole month of break with no homework or studying to do, we will have some time to kill. So grab a friend and consider doing these fun and affordable activities in the Chicagoland area over break!

1. Visit the Christkindlmarket downtown!

This is located at the Daley Plaza in Chicago and is only open for the holiday season. It is an adorable German market with lots of cute shops that sell hand-knitted hats, glass ornaments, handmade jewelry and unique sweaters. Of course, there is also yummy and wonderful food. There is a chocolate booth (my personal favorite) that makes fruits, marshmallows and other food items, and it is all dipped and smothered in smooth, milk chocolate. (This is making my mouth water). This fun market is so cozy and warm, and it isn’t just from the warm red wine you can buy either. ;) When you are here, you can feel the holiday spirit and the joy. Check it out here to learn more about it! 

2. Go skiing, snowboarding, or tubing!

Whether you are a seasoned skier or snowboarder or just a beginner, it is never too late to learn and enjoy the snow while partaking in these fun activities. My family and I go skiing every winter, and it is always something I look forward to as it brings back such nice memories. For people that are just starting out, I would suggest going to Four Lakes in the suburb of Lisle to learn the basics and ease into the sport without being intimidated. It has nice small hills to practice on. For people who have some experience and just want to enjoy the sport, there are a few places my family and I go to. However, Cascade Mountain is by far the best. It is located close to Wisconsin Dells and is about a 2-and-a-half-hour drive from the city.  It has slopes for every skill level, and it is such a cozy and carefree environment. Visit this site for more information on rentals and fees! 

3. Host an ugly sweater holiday party

This is one of the most basic events, yet it is often the most fun. Grab a few of your friends and find a basement somewhere complete with holiday décor, music and refreshments. This is an easy way to get into the spirit and is a fun way to let loose. A fun addition would be to have a contest and see who shows up with the ugliest sweater of them all! Check out some creative holiday party ideas here

I hope these ideas spur others and that your break is enjoyable and filled with family, good friends and wonderful memories.

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Anamarija Dimevska

Illinois State

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