Big Week: December 27-January 3

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By Staff

Happy Zoo Year

Families are invited to get a jump on celebrating the New Year at Brookfield Zoo's annual Zoo Year's Eve celebration on Sunday, Dec. 31.

The festivities start at the zoo, 8400 31st St. in Brookfield, at 6 p.m. with a DJ who will spin tunes to get the party rocking in addition to part favors, games, prizes and more. An early 2018 countdown culminates with a blast from the confetti cannon at 8 p.m.

Families with children under 6 are welcome to head over to the Hamill Family Play Zoo, where kids can make noisemakers and enjoy a kid-friendly countdown at 8 p.m.

The zoo is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., so families can come early to enjoy the rest of the zoo and taken in the millions of lights strung as part of the zoo's annual Holiday Magic event. Zoo Year's Eve activities are free with general zoo admission and parking fees. Guests should park in the main lot at Golfview Avenue and 31st Street.

For more information visit or call 708-688-8000.

Happy birthday, King

North Riverside Public Library, 2400 Desplaines Ave., continues its Wednesday Movie Matinee series by wishing a happy birthday to the King of Rock 'n' Roll, Elvis Presley, by screening his 1962 feature film, "Girls! Girls! Girls!" on Wednesday, Jan. 3 at 2 p.m.

The movie is free to attend, just drop in. For more information, call the library at 708-447-0869 or visit online at

Ready, set … 2018

Get your kids ready to ring in the New Year by reserving a spot for the Riverside Parks and Recreation Department's annual Kiddie New Year's Party, on Friday, Dec. 29 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. at the department's headquarters in the shadow of the water tower, 10 Pine Ave.

The cost per child is $15 ($20 non-residents). Sign up at the water tower or online at

Music at Plymouth Place

If you're looking to enjoy a little live music in the next week, you can head over to Plymouth Place, 315 N. LaGrange Road in LaGrange Park, and enjoy "A Tenor's Art" with Richard Gersten in the Albert Hall, on Wednesday, Dec. 27 at 2:30 p.m.

Or, you can help Plymouth Place welcome back multi-instrumentalist the "Amazing Mike" Pleska in the Albert Hall on Tuesday, Jan. 2 at 2:15 p.m.

Concerts are free and open to the public, but reservations are requested. Call 708-354-0340 or email

• The Brookfield Windy City travel baseball team is collecting winter outerwear -- hats, gloves, coats, boots, scarves and hoodies -- for those in need. Donations will benefit the Humble Hearts organization. Drop off items at 3712 Forest Ave. in Brookfield. Donations will be delivered to Humble Hearts on Jan. 10.

• Riverside Arts Center, 32 E. Quincy St., presents the work of artist Natalie Jacobson in "Seeing Things: The difference between you and me" in the Freeark Gallery of Art through Jan. 13, 2018. Free. Gallery hours Tuesday thru Saturday (except major holidays) from 1 to 5 p.m.

• Brookfield Zoo, 3300 Golf Road in Brookfield, continues with Holiday Magic the week of Dec. 26-31. The zoo is open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. each day of the event, with lights festivities beginning at 4 p.m. Each night features live music and entertainment, ice carving demonstrations, costumed characters, a model train display, pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus and more. Regular admission and parking rates apply. or 708-688-8000.

• North Riverside Public Library, 2400 Desplaines Ave., presents Also at the library this week: Messy Mornings for Munchkins (ages 2+), Jan. 2 at 10:30 a.m. and Lapsit Storytime (babies/toddlers with adult) on Dec. 28 at 10:30 a.m. Call 708-447-0869 for more info.

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