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Kick off the Holidays with these Fun Seasonal Activities

It’s that time of year again, the end of the semester grind. What this also means is that Thanksgiving Break and Winter Break are right around the corner!  So Collegiettes, grab your best friends, family members, and most importantly your holiday spirit, and try these fun activities over break! 

1. ABC Family’s 25 Days of Christmas
 
Whether you celebrate Christmas or not check out ABC Family’s 25 Days of Christmas movie listings.  Kick off the Holiday season with a movie night by watching some of your all time favorite flicks!

2. Crafting
 
Can’t decide what presents to buy for your friends and family?  Make them!  There are so many creative ideas for DIY gifts. All you have to do is Google “Holiday Craft Ideas” and visit your local craft store.  Also, this break is the perfect time to set up a Pinterest account and find great DIY gift ideas!  Visit Her Campus’ article on Pinterest here.

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3. Volunteer at a soup kitchen
 
Contact your local food pantry and volunteer to collect or deliver canned goods, meals, and other donations to those in need during this holiday season.  If you’re staying around Campustown over break check out a list of local pantries here!

4. Ice Skating at Millennium Park (November 18th-March 11th)
 
In less than one week the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink will be open!  Take a trip downtown to re-live skating as little kid or to create a new tradition with friends.  For hours of operation visit their website here.

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5. Magnificent Mile Lighting (November 19th)
 
Can’t get enough of those Christmas lights?  Go to the 20th Annual Magnificent Mile Lights Festival and take a front row seat at the magical procession of Mickey and Minnie, over 30 floats, marching bands, and of course, Santa.  Watch as more than 200 trees are illuminated and fireworks light up the sky over the Chicago River!

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 Want more lights and holiday magic?  Check out Lincoln Park’s Zoo lights and the Christmas windows at Macy’s!

6. Christkindlmarket Chicago (November 23rd-December 24th)
 
Searching for a unique present or a gift for yourself?  Visit one of the most popular winter festivals in the world and shop among hundreds of food and gift vendors.  Whether you choose to indulge in authentic German treats, purchase a beautiful, handcrafted ornament, or both, you will not be disappointed! 

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7. Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (November 24th)
 
Before the turkey and before the men in your family take over the TV for the football games on Thanksgiving’s Day, sit down with a warm cup of coffee and watch Macy’s 85th Annual Thanksgiving’s Day Parade!  Catch Snoopy and the countless other floats fly through the streets of New York. Such a sight will officially get you into the holiday spirit.

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8. Black Friday Shopping (November 25th)
 
Thanksgiving is almost here and so is Black Friday!  Whether you’re that girl who has her alarm set to 4am every year or if it’s your first year waking up at the crack dawn, Black Friday is definitely one of those American experiences you have participate in at least once. 

9. Secret Santa
 
Are you starting to feel your wallet get lighter and you’re wondering how to cut back on holiday expenses?  Start a secret Santa group among your friends!  This way everyone only has to buy one gift and can still participate in the season of giving.  Pull names out of a hat and have a party to exchange the gifts.

10. Baking party
 
Nothing represents the holidays more than a warm batch of cookies.  Channel your inner Martha Stewart or Betty Crocker and bake delicious treats for friends and family.  Try these sophisticated and fun bakes at here.

11. Angel Tree (Now – December 9th)
 

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We all know that giving is truly better than receiving and there is no time like now to get in the giving spirit!
The Salvation Army began the Angel Tree program, now one of their largest Christmas fundraising projects, to collect toys and clothing for children around Christmas time.  The program has grown over the years and they have joined with JC Penny’s to reach more children, teens and seniors across the nation. By “adopting” an Angel either by yourself or with a group, you can buy items for the Angel, and truly blessing them this holiday season. 

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