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What's Happening? Holiday Events in New York + Chicago

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The holiday season provides plenty of spectacular sights in both Chicago and New York. From the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, a New York tradition since 1925, to the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival along Chicago’s Michigan Avenue, there are no shortage of seasonal happenings to get you in the festive holiday spirit.

One of the city’s most popular annual holiday events is the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival, returning on November 18th. The day includes an interactive wonderland of holiday-themed activities at Pioneer Court (401 N. Michigan Ave. – just steps from The James Chicago) before the parade kicks off at 6 pm. The procession features floats, giant balloons, marching bands, dancers and fun musical performances.

New York 
Is there a more iconic Thanksgiving tradition than the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade? A staple that can be found on the television of almost every American home on Thanksgiving morning, the festivities kick off in NYC at 8 am.  The parade includes more than 1,500 dancers and cheerleaders, over 30 floats, a dozen marching bands with a total of over 8,000 participants that doesn’t include the 35,000 New Yorkers cheering the parade on from the sidewalks.

Midtown Manhattan will transform into its own winter wonderland at the Bryant Park Winter Village.  Beginning on October 28, the Winter Village boasts holiday shops, a restaurant and “The Rink” – New York’s only free-admission Bryant Park ice skating rink. The restaurant, Public Fare, will serve pastries, sandwiches and snacks with a coffee bar in the morning before transitioning into a wine and cocktail bar at night.  Need to get some shopping done? This NYC holiday market will include food and artisanal boutiques filled with delicious eats, exquisite gifts, decorative goods and more.

Need a home base to take in the seasonal festivities? Check out special hotel offers in SohoNoMad and Chicago.

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