Tag Archives: Chicago

Light Up Your Date Night with the 98th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony

The City of Chicago and UL are proud to present the official start of the holiday season the 98th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, Wednesday, November 23, 2011! The Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony is a highly-anticipated event drawing people of all ages to the heart of Chicago’s downtown “Loop.” Musical performances and festive holiday music begins at 4:30 pm and the holiday season officially commences at 5:00 pm, when the switch is flipped and the lights begin to dazzle in Daley Plaza.

Spangler Tree
The Winning Tree donated by the Spangler Family

Chicago has spoken! The 55-foot Colorado Spruce from Western Springs nominated by the Spangler Family will serve as the City’s official Christmas Tree on Daley Plaza this holiday season. This is the second year the City has held a contest encouraging residents to vote on the winning tree. Chicago’s Christmas Tree is presented by Safety Partner, UL.

The stately Colorado Spruce sits in the family’s front yard next to their home of 18 years. As a runner-up in last year’s contest, they decided to enter once again after much encouragement. “Our ‘celebritree’ status from last year brought much excitement and support from family, friends and neighbors,” said owner Klaudia Spangler.

As part of their contest submission, Mrs. Spangler wrote this about their tree: Over the years, the tree has served us well. It has been a fort for our kids when they were younger, a great source of shade and an ideal marker when directing people to our home. Now their “celebritree” will be a marker in the heart of Chicago, shining brightly for all to enjoy on Daley Plaza.

The tree will be removed by the Brickman Group on Thursday, November 3. On Friday evening November 4, it will be delivered to Daley Plaza and installed sometime after 7 pm Klaudia and Don Spangler as well as their children Aidan and Hope, will attend and take part in the Tree Lighting Ceremony on Wednesday, November 23 beginning at 4:30 pm on Daley Plaza. Following a musical program, they will join Santa Claus, program emcees Valerie Warner of Windy City LIVE and Mike Caplan of ABC 7 Chicago to light the tree promptly at 5 pm. Additionally, the Spangler family will receive decorative LED lights courtesy of UL.

The Christmas Tree Contest began in early September and 38 trees from Chicago, northern Illinois and Indiana were submitted for consideration. With the assistance of The Brickman Group (landscaping/tree professionals) and the Chicago Sun-Times, the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events selected the top three finalists.

12 Favorite Chicago Date Night Ideas

Here are twelve of our favorite Date Nights in Chicago.

  • Cooking Class – Spend some time together expanding your culinary repertoire. It’s no pressure on a good meal because friendly professional instructors are on hand to bail you out. And it’s fun!
  • Yoga (a class or in your own living room) – Exercising together is a great way to get in shape for all your physical activities. (wink)
  • Frisbee at the local park – There is an amazing and relaxing connection made from the gentle gliding of a disc through the air to your partner.
  • Chess/Checkers or your favorite board game – Keep the competition friendly but don’t shy away from wagering a late-night massage.
  • A street festival – What could be better than showing off your mate? Free admissions and people watching can make this a fun, free date.
  • Open mic night at the neighborhood bar – Shy? Imbibe and focus on your spouse before singing.
  • A cup of coffee at that corner bookstore – Recall your scholarly years and go for that smart, sophisticated crowd. You can even read to each other!
  • Draw a portrait of each other (over a bottle of wine) – It’s a wonderfully telling experience in both studying your mate and how you can express it.
  • Trip to the Art Museum – After floundering at portraiture look up a free night at the museum and compare your favorite pieces.
  • Dinner Cruise at Navy Pier – Get away from the city and see her best side, from the Lake!
  • A bike ride up the lake shore or forest preserve – Don’t forget our city’s natural beauty, or her’s.
  • Couple’s Massage – Disappear together into a spa, a couples massage is a great way for both of you to get centered and relaxed for whatever follows on your date night.

What are your favorite Date Nights? Let us know by commenting and we’ll feature your ideas in our next list.