Yes, the season is upon us again! That season of good old yuletide cheer, and Brookfield’s Annual Holiday Walk, on Saturday, Dec. 5.
Thanks to the efforts of Brookfield’s Recreation Department, the Brookfield Chamber of Commerce and nearly 30 event sponsors, that happy holiday festival gives us a chance to begin celebrating.
“We’re looking to have a fabulous time here, with the businesses, the villagers, and all of our many sponsors and supporters of Brookfield,” said Betty LeClere, chairwoman of the Holiday Walk for the Brookfield Chamber.
The fun begins at 2 p.m. in the business districts (3700 block of Grand Boulevard and Broadway Avenue), with the village hall adding to the entertainment.
In their traditional style, Santa and Mrs. Claus will arrive by firetruck at “Santa’s Station” — the Cottage at Irish Times, at 8869 Burlington Ave., from 2 to 5 p.m. They will later appear at the Brookfield Public Library, 3609 Grand Blvd., from 6 to 8 p.m.
Santa and Mrs. Claus look forward to greeting children of all ages, and will be handing out candy canes, elf-made in the Claus Candy Department.
After visiting Santa, you celebrate even more, either up Grand Boulevard to the other spots along the Walking Trail, or hop aboard the Holiday Trolley, which stops at sites between the Brookfield Village Hall, Grand Boulevard and the Veteran’s Memorial Circle at Eight Corners.
Operating from 3 to 8 p.m., the Holiday Trolley is again sponsored by the Brookfield Friends of the Library.
The business part of the walk begins at Fuego Cantina, 3755 Grand Blvd., for food and drink specials, until 8 p.m. Also a part of this special day is their own “Kristmas Karaoke.”
Emerald Bay Jewelry, at 3749½ Grand Blvd. will have holiday cookies and cider, and a sale on all in-stock items.
Burger Antics at 3740 Grand Blvd. will give children the chance to decorate their own special Christmas stockings from 3 to 5 p.m.
At 3747 Grand Blvd., The Sanctuary will be offering special prices on food and drink.
Brennan’s Massage and Spa, at 3700 Grand Blvd. will let you roast marshmallows, while a few elves are on hand to supervise. In addition to discounts on spa products and gift cards, they’re also sponsoring the Community Nurse Toy Drive, so that less fortunate children can have a Merry Christmas. Bring new toys of any kind to donate, and they do not have to be wrapped.
Arriving at the Brookfield Public Library, creative kids crafts will be going on all day.
Walk over a block south to St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 9035 Grant Ave., to sample the season with cookies, coffee, hot cocoa, music, and “Carol-oke.” Here you can also assemble a hygiene kit and holiday card to be distributed to needy local people.
Betty’s Flowers and Gifts, 9138 Broadway Ave., will be serving up hot cocoa and cookies. Olaf, the famous snowman from the popular movie Frozen, will give you a warm welcome, ready at the drop of a snowball to meet you and pose for photos.
Why not pop into Tischler’s Finer Foods, 9118 Broadway Ave., and watch balloon artist Tommy Twister create animals out of thin air (and balloons, too!)
From 4 to 6 p.m., For the Birds, at 9207 Broadway Ave., will have refreshments, accompanied by holiday music played by local musician Carolyn Krizek.
This year the petting zoo is back, from 3 to 6 p.m., at the Ministry of Compassion Methodist Church lot right off the circle, at Grand Boulevard and Broadway Avenue. Ducks, bunnies, chickens, goats, and eight sheep will be waiting for you.
Also around the Memorial Circle, there will be 10 white wooden reindeer, sponsored and decorated by local businesses. Take your photos now — in a few days they will be given back to those businesses, where the reindeer will be on display.
The American Cancer Society Relay for Life will be putting out 100 luminaries around the circle and up and down Grand Blvd., too.
The Brookfield Chamber of Commerce will raffle off three gift baskets for adults. Just put in your name near the petting zoo. The winning names will be pulled after the tree lighting ceremony at 5:30 p.m. at the Memorial Circle.
At the tree lighting, Santa and Mrs. Claus, joined by Ms. Clara and Her Joyful Group will be caroling and then continuing down Grand Boulevard. You are welcome to follow along, and sing along.
Before the tree lighting, think about taking the trolley to the Brookfield Village Hall, 8820 Brookfield Ave., for more fun and games.
At 3 p.m., all kinds of events will kick off in the main-floor council chamber and downstairs in the recreation hall.
In the council chamber, 16-year-old Danny Izarry will amaze and amuse all with a magic show. At 3:30 p.m. you can also get temporary tattoos to give you that true holiday look. Also in the council chamber, you can hear the St. Louise de Marillac Men’s Club caroling away, beginning at 4 p.m.
Down in the recreation hall, at 3 p.m., the S.E. Gross School Band will enchant you with an array of holiday-themed instrumental classics, and at 3:30, the S.E. Gross School Chorus will vocally serenade you with songs of the season.
At 4 p.m., dance instructor Ann Lenartson will have her Elite Dance Studio Students, ranging in age from 3 to 50-ish years old illustrating by dance, an act called “Winter Wonderland,” being a short medley of outdoor winter activities, using an array of props.
“It gives students exposure, and lets parents see what their little ones are doing,” Lenartson said.
The Lincoln School Chorus will be caroling many fondly remembered holiday favorites beginning at 4:30 p.m.
Also located in the village hall are ornamental Christmas cookie decorating from 3:30 to 4:30 and holiday craft making from 3 to 5 p.m. Here, with the help of the Brookfield Women’s Club, you can make gift bags, color pages and create all kinds of ornaments.
Have yourself photographed against the traditional Winter Murals where you can use props in the pictures.
Speaking of Murals, there are Christmas cards you can sign that will be sent to servicemen overseas, sponsored by the Alphabet Learning Center.
Outside the village hall, with weather permitting, will be the Holiday Walk’s famous Winter Games. Try your hand at the Famous Frozen Fish Toss and the Rudolph Ring Toss. Have fun and win prizes!
In the lobby of the village hall is one of the collection boxes for St. Barbara’s Food Pantry items. Others boxes are located at A Sound Education, Burger Antics, Cantata, First National Bank of Brookfield, Hollywood School, Ryan’s Public House, Tony’s Family Restaurant, the LaGrange Park YMCA and Betty’s Flowers and Gifts. Bring something in that doesn’t need refrigeration or with a shelf life that hasn’t yet expired.