Heritage & Holly Home Tour – November 24-25
Decatur’s Historic District. Tour several beautifully decorated homes in Decatur’s historic district, proceeds benefit Dove, Inc., F 4-8pm, Sa 12-6pm, $, for details visit www.doveinc.org or 217-428-6616.
Cocoa & Cookies – December 1
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. Join Santa for an evening of crafts, cocoa and fun, 6-8pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-5437.
Santa House in Central Park – December
Downtown Decatur, Central Park. Visit Santa and tell him your Christmas wishes, free, donations accepted, for hours call 217-422-2200.
Sugar Plum Ball – December 1
Decatur Club, Ballroom, 158 W. Prairie Ave. The Symphony Holiday Gala continues the magic of Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker performance with an elegant dinner, fine wines, live and silent auctions, music and dancing, black tie optional and period dress welcome, funds raised benefit the Millikin-Decatur Symphony Orchestra and music education programs funded by the Symphony Orchestra Guild of Decatur, 6pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-3189.
XMAS ARTicles – December 1-29
Opening Event – December 1
Madden Arts Center, Anne Lloyd Gallery, 125 N. Water St. A Christmas gift shop with original art and fine crafts from more than 50 artists in varied mediums, opening event 12/1 during the First Friday Gallery Walk 5-7:30pm, also open 12/6 during the Christmas Walk, 5-8pm. General gallery hours M-F 8:30am-5:30pm, Sa 10am-4pm, free admission, 217-423-3189.
A Christmas Past – December 2
Fletcher Park, Sulphur Springs School House, 323 Fletcher Park Blvd., Mt. Zion. Visit Mrs. Claus, tour the museum, tree lighting ceremony, Christmas carols, refreshments served, 4:30-6:30pm, tree lighting and carols 5:30pm, free, 217-864-5424.
Christmas Extravaganza – December 2
Mt. Zion Convention Center, 1400 Mt. Zion Pkwy, Mt. Zion. Games, face painting and The Amazing Dudley Magic Show, 11am-2pm, $, 217-864-5424.
Heavenly Holidays Bazaar – December 2
Mt. Calvary Lutheran Church, 2055 S. Franklin St. Cookie walk, baked goods, crafts, luncheon, Christmas room, vendors and crafters, proceeds support the missions of the Mt. Calvary Ladies Guild, 7am-2pm, free, 217-429-2026.
Holidays Around the World – December 2
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. Join international students from Millikin University to learn about holiday traditions around the world, 10am-1pm, free with museum admission, 217-423-5437.
Vespers – December 2-3
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, 1184 W. Main St. Millikin’s 59th annual Vespers (Evening Prayers), the beautiful seasonal production performed by over 300 student singers and instrumentalists featuring songs from past centuries, carols, anthems and candlelight, not recommended for children under age 7, 2 & 7:30pm, $, 217-424-6318.
Christmas Walk – December 6
Downtown Decatur. Downtown comes alive with horse-drawn carriage rides, music and carolers, children’s activities, delicious goodies and Santa Claus in Central Park, extended retail hours and art galleries open, 5-8pm, free, 217-422-1509.
Christmas Chaos Dinner Theatre – December 7-8
Decatur Club, 158 W. Prairie Ave. Enjoy dinner and a Theatre 7 production, proceeds for Theatre 7’s ongoing support, dressy casual attire, doors open 6pm, $, reservations required, 217-429-4200.
Irving Berlin’s White Christmas – December 8-17
The Little Theatre On The Square, 16 E. Harrison, Sullivan. Based on the timeless film, this heartwarming musical features 17 Irving Berlin songs, 2 & 7:30pm, $, www.thelittletheatre.org or 217-728-7375.
Joys for Toys Gala – December 8
Decatur Conference Center and Hotel, 4191 W. Highway Rt. 36. An evening of band music, heavy appetizers, silent auction, 50/50 raffle and cash bar, guests encouraged to bring a new unwrapped toy or book to donate to CASA for Christmas gifts, presented by the Junior Welfare Association, proceeds to support JWA grant and scholarship programs and shoe fund, cocktail attire/black tie optional, doors open 6:30pm, River Bottom Nightmare Band 7:30-10:30pm, $, 217-254-3420 or 217-454-5134.
Nutcracker Ballet – December 8-10
Richland Community College, Shilling Auditorium, 1 College Park. Richland’s 20th annual Nutcracker Ballet, a family holiday tradition, F & Sa 7pm, Su 2:30pm, $, 217-875-7211 ext. 6170.
Holiday Jazz – December 9
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, 1184 W. Main St. Celebrate sounds of the season with Millikin University’s faculty jazz sextet performing their interpretation of holiday classics, 7:30pm, $, 217-424-6318.
PJs Party with Santa at Scovill Zoo – December 9
Scovill Zoo, 71 S. Country Club Rd. Bring your pillow, wear your PJs, visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus, make an ornament, decorate cookies, enjoy an animal presentation and sing some holiday tunes, children must be accompanied by an adult, 1-3pm or 5-7pm, $, 217-421-7435.
Chamber Orchestra Advent Service – December 10
Central Christian Church, 650 W. William St. The Millikin-Decatur Symphony Chamber Orchestra performs in a service of the season, caroling favorites, the Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis and a special Hallelujah sing-along, 10:30am, free, 217-428-4336.
Santa Shuffle – December 10
Decatur Indoor Sports Center (DISC), 1295 W. Wood St. Non-competitive fun run for ages 2-10 on the indoor track 1/8 to 1 mile, games and inflatables, cookie and photo with Santa, ages 2-4 3:30-4pm, ages 5-6 4-4:30pm, ages 7-8 4:30-5pm, ages 9-10 5-5:30pm, $, 217-429-3472.
Victorian Christmas Tea – December 10
Oglesby Mansion, 421 W. William St. Enjoy an old-fashioned Christmas celebration at Governor Oglesby’s beautiful Victorian mansion, refreshments served, 2-4pm, free, 217-429-9422.
Holiday Lunch & BINGO – December 12
Johns Hill Center, 601 S. Jasper St. Enjoy lunch and bingo, 12pm, $, reservations by 12/2, 217-429-7750.
A Merry Old Radio Holiday Show: A Soy City Christmas Event – December 14-16
Richland Community College, Shilling Auditorium, 1 College Pk. A touring troupe of radio show players prepare to perform the latest episode of their throwback radio review, original musical written by Decatur’s The Kablooey Group, 7pm, $, 217-423-3189.
Christmas Dreams Forgotten – December 16
Decatur Civic Center Theater, 1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza. The Prophecy Show, a powerhouse group from St. Louis, pays tribute to the music of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, 7pm, $, 217-422-7300.
Christmas High Tea – December 16
Mari-Mann Herb Co., 1405 Mari Mann Ln. The 28th annual full English High Tea featuring 12 sweet and savory treats, stories filled with insights on Christmas traditions, 12-2pm, $, reservations required, 217-429-1555.
Gingerbread House Workshop – December 22 & 23
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. Decorate your own gingerbread house with icing and candy on pre-made houses, 10am-12pm & 1-3pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-5437.
Happy Noon Year – December 31
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. A special countdown to the New Year with music, a craft and fun for those who don’t stay up late, confetti flies and balloon drops at noon, 10am-2pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-5437.
New Year’s Eve Ice Skating Party – December 31
Decatur Civic Center, Ice Arena, 1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza. Music, games, party favors and ice skating, 7:30pm-12:30am, $, 217-422-7300.
New Year’s Eve Party – December 31
Decatur Civic Center Theater, 1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza. Party featuring 176 Keys Fun Pianos, cocktails on the mezzanine 8-9pm, theater doors open 8:30pm, show 9pm, $, 217-422-7300.
Perkinson Exhibit – November 27-December 10
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, Perkinson Gallery, 1184 W. Main St. Taryn Pepping, Bachelor of Fine Arts Thesis Exhibition, focusing on her ceramics and paintings, M-F 12-5pm when school is in session, free, 217-424-6227.
Art Bazaar and Celebration – November 30
Richland Community College, Mueller Student Center, 1 College Pk. RCC students’ art sale, 10am-3pm, free admission, 217-875-7200.
Decatur Airport Exhibit – December
Decatur Airport, Main Terminal, Lobby Gallery, 910 Airport Rd. Featuring the works of Nicole Christison, airport lobby open hours, free, 217-422-1509.
First Friday Gallery Walks – December 1 & January 5
Anne Lloyd Gallery, 125 N. Water St.& Blue Connection, 117 N. Water St.& Gallery 510, 160 E. Main St. An evening of unique art, artist talks, live music, hors d’oeuvres and beverages in three downtown Decatur art galleries, 5-7:30pm, free, 217-423-3189.
First Friday Opening Reception – December 1
Gallery 510 Exhibit – December
Gallery 510, 160 E. Main St. Opening reception featuring Judy Kimmons’ water color paintings, refreshments, F 12/1, 5-7:30pm, artist talk 6:30pm, free. General exhibit viewing during December, Tu-F 11am-5pm, Sa 11am-3pm, free, 217-422-1509.
Library Exhibit – December
Decatur Public Library, Art Gallery, 130 N. Franklin St. Featuring Leta Burch’s paintings, library open hours, free, 217-422-1509.
Rock Springs Exhibits – December
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Various media works by the Barn Colony Artists in the North Gallery and Dave Castor’s photography in the South Gallery, Rock Springs business hours, free, 217-423-7708.
Wildflour Exhibit – December
Wildflour Artisan Bakery & Café, 256 W. Main St. Featuring Greg Fombelle’s artworks, café open hours, free, 217-422-1509.
Rock Art – December 17
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Decorate a rock of your choice to keep or give to someone to brighten their day, rocks and supplies provided, 2pm, free, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
Library Exhibit –January
Decatur Public Library, Art Gallery, 130 N. Franklin St. Featuring the works of Jessica Disbrow, library open hours, free, 217-422-1509.
Rock Springs Exhibits – January
Rock Springs Nature Center, North Wing Gallery, 3939 Nearing Ln. Decatur Camera Club’s photography in the North Gallery and Melody Arnold’s works in the South Gallery, Rock Springs business hours, free, 217-423-7708.
Young Artists Showcase 2017 – January 5-30
Reception – January 5
Madden Arts Center, Anne Lloyd Gallery, 125 N. Water St. Annual juried exhibit featuring exemplary art work by Decatur area students in grades 5-8, presented by Gallery 510 Arts Guild, Reception & Awards Ceremony 1/5 5-7:30pm, general exhibit viewing M-F 8:30-4:30, Sa 10am-2pm, free, 217-423-3189.
STEAM Saturday – January 6
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. Eric Hector from Heroic Age Art Studio presents information about comic book design, art and creativity, for 3rd-6th graders, 10:30am-12pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-5437.
Perkinson Exhibit – January 22-February 22
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, Perkinson Gallery, 1184 W. Main St. Selected works from Cinema Gallery showcasing works of more than 70 professional Midwest artists, M-F 12-5pm when school is in session, free, 217-424-6227.
CONCERTS & LIVE MUSIC
Dulcimer Music – December 2, 16 & January 13, 27
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Listen to the Dulcimer Club play old time music, 10am-12pm, free, 217-423-7708.
Blue Grass Music Jams – December 10 & January 14
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Enjoy old time tunes played by area musicians, 1-4pm free, 217-423-7708.
Greater Decatur Chorale Dinner & Concert – January 12-14
Hickory Point Banquet Facility, 727 Weaver Rd. Annual dinner and concert by the Decatur Park District’s Greater Decatur Chorale with special guests the Maroa-Forsyth High School Choir, F & Sa cash bar 6pm, dinner 6:30-7:15pm, concert 7:30pm, Su lunch 12:30-1:30pm, concert 2pm, $, reservations required by 1/3, 217-422-5911.
Collegiate Chorale Tour Finale Concert – January 21
Central Christian Church, 650 W. William St. The Millikin University choir performs their concluding concert of a week-long tour, 7:30pm, free, 217-424-4336.
University Choir Tour Finale Concert – January 28
St. Patrick Catholic Church, 407 E. Eldorado. This Millikin University choir performs their final concert of a10-day tour, 3pm, free, 217-424-4336.
COMEDY & THEATER
Wintertime – December 7-9
Millikin University, Shilling Hall, Albert Taylor Theatre, 1184 W. Main St. A tragicomedy about dysfunctional relationships, presented by Millikin University’s School of Theatre & Dance, Th & F 7:30pm, Sa 2pm & 7:30pm, $, 217-424-6318.
Mark Nizer 4D – January 27
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, 1184 W. Main St. Mark Nizer performs his one- man show incorporating juggling, technology video, music and humor, 4D glasses provided by Kirkland, 7:30pm, $, 217-424-6318.
HISTORY & MUSEUMS
Books Between Bites – December 6
Decatur Public Library, 130 N. Franklin St. Join Don Chamberlain for a discussion of the book, “Engineering Victory: How Technology Won the Civil War,” by Dr. Thomas F. Army, bring your lunch, 12:15-1pm, free, 217-791-4423.
Bicentennial Exhibit Open House – January 28
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Tour the Illinois Bicentennial Exhibit to learn about our state’s history, refreshments served, 5-7pm, free, 217-423-7708.
NATURE & GARDENS
Nature Programs and Family Hikes – December & January
Rock Springs Conservation Area, 3939 Nearing Ln., reservations required,
12/9 – Mammal Hike, 2pm, free
1/6 – Night Hike, 9-10:30pm, $
Feed the Animals – December 10
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Take a close look at how Rock Springs cares for their resident animals, families receive an animal guide to take home, 2-4pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
Animals in Winter – December 21
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Explore how animals survive the winter, visit the window on wildlife, learn about fur and look for tracks outside, 6pm, free, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
EVENTS FOR CHILDREN & FAMILIES
Super Saturday Recess – December 2-January 27
Decatur Indoor Sports Center (DISC), 1295 W. Wood St. Inflatables, scooters, basketball, tumbling, rock wall (select dates), for kids ages 4-11, Sa’s 10am-12pm, $, 217-429-3472.
Parents’ Night Out at the DISC – December 15
Decatur Indoor Sports Center (DISC), 1295 W. Wood St. Kids ages 5-12 enjoy games, rock wall, inflatables, scooters, pizza and more, 5:30-8:30pm, $, must pre-register, 217-429-3472.
Father/Daughter Dance – January 27
Hickory Point Banquet Facility, 727 W. Weaver Rd., Forsyth. Young ladies ages 5-12 and their dads enjoy dinner and an evening of music and dancing, presented by Decatur Park District, dinner 5-6pm, dancing 6-9pm, $, reservations by 1/24, 217-422-5911.
SPORTS, HEALTH & FITNESS
Couples/Singles Dance – December 17
Knights of Columbus Hall, 520 E. North St. Dance to the music of the band BAM!, proceeds benefit New Life Pregnancy Center and Oasis Day Center, 5-8pm, $, 217-875-3090.
DISC Open House – January 6
Decatur Indoor Sports Center (DISC), 1295 W. Wood St. Tours, demonstrations, giveaways and discounts, 9am-12pm, free, 217-429-3472.
Small Business Saturday – November 25
Decatur Small Businesses. Join the Greater Decatur Chamber of Commerce and American Express to support small businesses in our community, Shop Small Shop LOCAL!, www.decaturchamber.com or 217-422-2200.
Chamber Business Breakfasts – December 6 & January 3
Decatur Club, 158 W. Prairie Ave. Breakfast and networking opportunities, business casual attire, 12/6 Decatur Leadership Institute project overview, 1/3 featured speaker, sponsored by the Greater Decatur Chamber of Commerce, doors open 6:30am, breakfast & program 7-8am, $, registrations preferred, 217-422-2200.
Second Saturday Book Sales – December 9 & January 13
Decatur Public Library, 2nd floor, 130 N. Franklin St. Used books, CDs, DVDs and special items for sale, proceeds benefit Decatur Public Library’s literacy promoting programs, presented by Friends of the Library, 9:30am-12:30pm, 217-791-4423.
Cooking Show – December 11
Mari-Mann Herb Co., 1405 Mari Mann Ln. Enjoy the show Prime Rib & More by Executive Chef Brian Pehr, watch the preparation and then join in the feast, visit www.marimann.com for menu, 6-8pm, $, reservations required, 217-429-1555.
Crop & Craft – December 16
Fletcher Park Recreation Center, 323 Fletcher Pk. Blvd., Mt. Zion. Bring your own scrapbooking supplies, lunch, dinner and snacks, full kitchen available, each person will have a 6-foot banquet table to use, 10am-10pm, $, reservations required, 217-864-5424.
Decatur Bridal Expo 2018 – January 6
Decatur Conference Center & Hotel, 4191 US 36 West. Annual Expo with a runway fashion show, door prizes, over 40 vendors, 11am-3pm, style show 2pm, $, 217-428-3481 or 217-972-1042.
Books Between Bites – January 3
Decatur Public Library, 130 N. Franklin St. Join John Schirle for a discussion of the book, “City of Thorns: Nine Lives in the World’s Largest Refugee Camp” by Ben Rawlence, bring your lunch, 12:15-1pm, free, 217-791-4423.
Winter Cookout and BINGO – January 24
Johns Hill Center, 601 S. Jasper St. Enjoy a cookout and bingo, 12pm, $, reservations by 1/17, 217-429-7750.
Neuhoff Bridal Extravaganza – January 27
Mt. Zion Convention Center, 1400 Mt. Zion Pkwy, Mt. Zion. Visit with dozens of wedding vendors under one roof, honeymoon trip and other door prizes, 11am-3pm, $, 217-423-9744.
For information on how to include your event on the calendar, contact Cultural Arts Editor Terrie Potter by email: ArtsEdit@aol.com or call 217-423-0422.