Just Use It Exhibit – through December 10
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, Perkinson Gallery, 1184 W. Main St. Exhibition and sale of functional and unique artist-produced ceramic pieces, in collaboration with the Cinema Gallery in Urbana, M-F 12-5pm, free, 217-420-6639.
Decatur Airport Exhibit – December
Decatur Airport, Main Terminal, Lobby Gallery, 910 Airport Rd. Featuring the works of Pam Marty, airport lobby open hours, free, 217-422-1509.
Library Exhibit – December
Decatur Public Library, Art Gallery, 130 N. Franklin St. Featuring Barbara Dove’s oil paintings, library open hours, free, 217-422-1509.
Rock Springs Exhibits – December
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. North Gallery — various media works by the Barn Colony artists; South Gallery — photographs by Melody Arnold, Rock Springs business hours, free, 217-423-7708.
Exhibit & Opening Reception – December 2
Gallery 510 Exhibit – December
Gallery 510, 160 E. Main St. Opening reception during the Downtown Christmas Walk, featuring the watercolor paintings of Sue Watts, refreshments, W 12/2, 5:30-7:30pm, artist talk 6:30pm, free. General exhibit viewing through December, Tu-F 11am-5pm, Sa 11am-3pm, free, 217-422-1509.
Library Exhibit –January
Decatur Public Library, Art Gallery, 130 N. Franklin St. Featuring the works of Carol Kessler, library open hours, free, 217-422-1509.
Rock Springs Exhibit – January
Rock Springs Nature Center, North Wing Gallery, 3939 Nearing Ln. North Gallery —photographs by the Decatur Camera Club; South Gallery — items from the Macon County Conservation District’s collection, Rock Springs business hours, free, 217-423-7708.
Senior BFA Exhibitions – January-February
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, Perkinson Gallery, 1184 W. Main St. Featuring a variety of works by Millikin University senior Bachelor of Fine Arts students in all art media, M-F 12-5pm, free, 217-424-6227.
Perkinson Gallery Exhibit – January 25-February 25
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, 1184 W. Main St. Featuring Megan Wolfe’s ceramic sculptures, M-F 12-5pm, free, 217-424-6227.
First Friday Reception – January 8
Gallery 510 Exhibit – January
Gallery 510, 160 E. Main St. First Friday opening reception for color pencil artist James Clark, refreshments, F 1/9, 5:30-7:30pm, artist talk 6:30pm, free. General exhibit viewing through January, Tu-F 11am-5pm, Sa 11am-3pm, free, 217-422-1509.
Young Artists Showcase 2015 – January 8-30
Madden Arts Center, Anne Lloyd Gallery, 125 N. Water St. Annual juried exhibit featuring art work by Decatur area students in grades 5-8, presented by Gallery 510 Arts Guild, M-F 8:30-4:30, Sa 10am-2pm, free, 217-423-3189.
Faculty Recital – November 22
Millikin University, Kaeuper Hall, 1184 W. Main St. Millikin University Faculty Recital featuring Chung-Ha Kim, piano, 4pm, free, 217-424-6318.
Opus 24 Fall Concert – November 24
St. Patrick Catholic Church, 407 E. Eldorado. Choral concert featuring fall, advent and Christmas pieces from the 19th century to present, guest instrumentalists, 7:30pm, $, 217-422-1422.
LSB Music – December
Lock Stock & Barrel, 129 S. Oakland Ave., 217-429-7411.
12/4 – Chris Bradley, 6-9pm
12/4 – Steely James, 8-11pm
12/11 – Billy Galt, 6-9pm
12/12 – Fabulous Hoedads, 8-11pm
Saturday Jazz at LSB
Lock Stock & Barrel, 129 S. Oakland Ave., 3:30-5:30pm, no cover charge, 217-429-7411.
12/5 – Kevin Hart and the Vibe Tribe
12/12 – Decatur Big Band
12/19 – Diversity, Christmas Holiday Show
12/26 – Boss Trio
1/2 – Craig Russo Latin Jazz Project
1/9 – Dixie Daredevils
1/16 – Decatur Big Band
1/30 – MU Faculty Jazz
Decatur Chordsmen in Concert –December 11
Hickory Point Mall. Enjoy the vocal styling of Decatur’s barbershop harmony a cappella group. 7:00-8:00 pm. Free.
Decatur Chordsmen Christmas Concert – December 13
Westminster Presbyterian Church. Holiday music performed by Decatur’s barbershop harmony a cappella group. 2:00 pm. Free.
Best of Broadway Dinner Theatre – January 8-10
Scovill Golf Course Banquet Facility, 3909 W. Main St. Decatur Park District’s Greater Decatur Chorale’s annual event, F & Sa cash bar 6pm, dinner 6:30pm, concert 7:30pm, and Su lunch 12:30pm, concert 2pm, $, reservations by 1/6, 217-422-5911.
Collegiate Chorale Tour Finale Concert – January 17
Central Christian Church, 650 W. William St. Millikin University choir performs classical and newly composed pieces, 7:30pm, free, 217-424-4336.
University Choir Tour Finale Concert – January 24
St. Patrick Church, 407 E. Eldorado St. Millikin University choir performs classical and newly composed pieces, 4pm, free, 217-424-4336.
THEATER & DANCE
Solstice: A Concert of Dance – December 10-12
Millikin University, Albert Taylor Theatre, 1184 W. Main St. Featuring a variety of dance styles in original works, Th & F 7:30pm, Sa 2pm, $, 217-424-6318.
Unnecessary Farce – January 15-17 & 22-24
Richland Community College, Shilling Auditorium, 1 College Pk. Two cops, three crooks, eight doors, embezzlement, videotaping and confusion abound in the comical play by Theatre 7, F’s & Sa’s 7:30pm, Su’s 2pm, $, www.theatre7.net or 217-423-2107.
Step Afrika! – January 30
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, 1184 W. Main St. A professional dance company dedicated to the tradition of stepping where the body is used as an instrument to create intricate rhythms and sounds through a combination of footsteps, claps and the spoken word, 7:30pm, $, 217-424-6318.
HISTORY & MUSEUMS
Governor Richard Oglesby Mansion Open House – November 29
421 W. William St. Visit this historic Decatur landmark and beautifully restored Victorian home of Illinois Governor Richard Oglesby, 2-4pm, $, 217-423-7708.
Dulcimer Music – December 5, 19 & January 2, 16, 30
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Listen to the Dulcimer Club play old time music or bring your dulcimer and join in, 10am-12pm, free, 217-423-7708.
Blue Grass Music Jams – December 13 & January 10
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Enjoy old time tunes played by area musicians or bring your instrument and play, 1-4pm free, 217-423-7708.
Field Museum Trip – December 13
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Bus trip to Chicago to visit the Field Museum, bring a lunch or purchase on site, 8am-6pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum Trip – January 10
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Bus trip to Springfield for all ages to experience this immersive museum, 12:30-4pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
NATURE & GARDENS
Conservation Areas in Winter – December 19 & January 9
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Staff members will drive you to several Conservation District sites to look for wildlife and natural beauty and to learn about ongoing restoration work, 2-4pm, free, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
Snake and Turtle Show – January 16
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Learn about snakes and turtles, then see and feel the live animals, 1-2:30pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
Eagle Viewing Trip – January 23 & 30
Rock Springs Conservation Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Bus trip to Starved Rock State Park to view wild bald eagles along the Illinois River and visit the Lock and Dam Museum, bring a lunch or purchase one from the restaurant, 8am-4pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
EVENTS FOR CHILDREN & FAMILIES
Family Games Days – December & January
Hickory Point Mall, south corridor, Dr. G’s BrainWorks store, Forsyth. A Brain Guide will have various games for families to play, for all ages, Su’s 2-4pm, free, 217-330-8629.
Super Saturday Recess – December 5-January 30
Decatur Indoor Sports Center (DISC), 1295 W. Wood St. Active Saturday mornings with inflatables, scooters, basketball, tumbling and more, for kids ages 4-11, parent must be present, 10am-12pm, $, 217-429-3472.
Family Hikes – December & January
Rock Springs Conservation Area, 3939 Nearing Ln., free, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
12/20 – Interactive Story, 2pm
1/2 – Winter Birding, 10am
1/17 – New Year’s Fitness Hike, 2pm
City Museum Trip – December 12
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Bus trip to St. Louis to visit City Museum, a playground for adults and children alike crafted from scrap metal and interpreted by artists, purchase lunch on site, 8am-4pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
Winter Break Camp – December 28-31
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Kids ages 6-12 will play games, make crafts and spend time doing outdoor activities, bring a sack lunch, two snacks provided daily, dress for hiking and the weather, 8:30am-4:30pm, $, register by 12/23, 217-423-7708.
Pajama Party Mini Camp – December 30
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. Learn what animals do in the winter to stay warm and wear your favorite pajamas to keep you warm, must be accompanied by an adult buddy, ages 1-5 @ 9:30-10:30, ages 3-5 @ 1-2pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
School’s Out Day Camp – January 18
Decatur Indoor Sports Center (DISC), 1295 W. Wood St. Games and a field trip to the Urbana Indoor Aquatics Center, for kids ages 5-13, 8:1 student to staff ratio, 6:30am-6pm, $, 217-429-3472.
Father/Daughter Dance – January 30
Hickory Point Banquet Facility, 727 W. Weaver Rd. Young ladies ages 5-12 and their dads will enjoy dinner and an evening of music and dancing, presented by Decatur Park District, dinner 5-6pm, dancing 6-9pm, $, reservations by 1/27, 217-422-5911.
SPORTS, HEALTH & FITNESS
Club Ice – December & January
Decatur Civic Center, 1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza. Public ice skating, skate rental available, F’s 6-8pm, Sa’s 3:30-5:30pm, Su’s 1-3pm, also 12/18, 1/8, 1/22, 1/29 @ 6-9pm & 12/19, 12/26, 1/2, 1/9, 1/22, 1/30 @ 7:30-9:30pm, $, 217-422-7300.
Staley Striders Indoor Track & Field – December 9-January 28
Decatur Indoor Sports Center (DISC), 1295 W. Wood St. Help for athletes ages 6-18, focusing on skill mastery, tee shirts provided for regular participants, presented by Tate & Lyle, Tu’s, W’s, Th’s 4-5pm, $, 217-429-3472.
DISC Open House – January 2
Decatur Indoor Sports Center (DISC), 1295 W. Wood St. Tours, demonstrations, giveaways and special discounts, 9am-12pm, free, 217-429-3472.
Annual Community Thanksgiving Luncheon – November 24
Decatur Civic Center, #1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza. Community leaders are honored and foreign exchange students are recognized at the public luncheon held annually since 1953, business casual attire, doors open 11:30am, luncheon 12pm, $, reservations required, 217-422-2200.
Second Saturday Book Sales – December 12 & January 9
Decatur Public Library, 2nd floor, 130 N. Franklin St. Used books, CDs, DVDs and special items for sale, free refreshments, proceeds benefit Decatur Public Library programs, presented by Friends of the Library, 9:30am-12:30pm, 217-424-2900 ext. 133.
2016 Decatur Bridal Expo – January 8-9
Decatur Conference Center & Hotel, 4191 US 36 West. The 37th annual Expo featuring more than 50 models in a NYC high fashion runway show, musical entertainment, 50-60 vendor booths, wedding cake sampling, prize money and much more, F 5-9pm, Sa 12-4pm, $, www.DecaturBridalExpo.com or 217-428-3481 or 217-877-8200.
Star Party – January 17
Rock Springs Nature Center, 3939 Nearing Ln. An evening of crafts, telescopes, stars and planets, dress to spend time outside, 6:30-8pm, free, reservations required, 217-423-7708.
CASA Volunteer Training – January 19
CASA, Millikin Bank Building, 132 N. Water St. Macon County has more than 600 children in the juvenile court system due to abuse and neglect, CASA trained advocates provide a voice in court for them, volunteers must be 21 or older, 9am-12pm, free, reservations required, 217-428-8424.
Salvation Army Bell Ringing – through December 24
Various Decatur locations. Ring a bell for Salvation Army donations to the famous red buckets, only two hours are required, must be age 16 or older, all proceeds collected remain in Macon County for the homeless shelter, food pantry, social services, clothing, utility and rent assistance, senior and youth programs, two-hour shifts from 10am-8pm, www.ringbells.org or 217-428-4672.
Irving Berlin’s White Christmas – November 20-22
Decatur Civic Center, 1 Gary Anderson Plaza. Musical/play presented by Decatur Underground Theater, F’s & Sa’s 7pm, Su’s 2pm, $, 217-422-6161.
Christmas Parade – November 21
Downtown Decatur. Christmas Thru the Years: The Annual Nighttime Lighted Christmas Parade, celebrating the 100-year anniversary of the Decatur Jaycees who have provided Decatur with the Christmas Parade for over 50 years, 5:30pm, free, 217-413-0990.
Symphony Holiday Gala – November 21
Decatur Club. Elegant buffet dinner, music by Four Other Brothers, live auction with Corky Nicholson, proceeds support music programs funded by the Symphony Guild of Decatur. $. 6:00 pm. For reservations call 217-423-3189.
Heritage & Holly Home Tour – November 27-28
Tour begins at the Masonic Temple, 224 W. William St. Tour of historic homes decorated for Christmas, “25 Years of Memories: Toasting the Best,” tour includes the Henry Mueller house, Peter Wykoff house, #4 Millikin Place and more along with other surprises and exhibits, refreshments and entertainment, proceeds benefit the Near Westside Restoration and Preservation Society (NWRAPS), Candlelight Tour F 4-8pm, Sa 12-6pm, $, 234-208-6871.
Christmas Walk – December 2
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.
XMAS ARTicles – December 2-30
Opening Event – December 2
Madden Arts Center, Anne Lloyd Gallery, 125 N. Water St. A Christmas gift shop full of original art and fine crafts from more than fifty area artists, opening event 12/2 during the Downtown Christmas Walk, 5-8pm. General gallery hours MTWF’s 8:30am-4:30pm, Th’s 8:30am-7pm, Sa’s 10am-4pm, free admission, 217-423-3189.
Ugly Sweater Party – December 3
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. Wear your reindeer antler headbands and light-up Rudolph sweaters at this adults-only charity event, proceeds benefit Children’s Museum educational programming and upkeep, 6-9pm, $, 217-423-5437.
Nutcracker Ballet – December 4-6
Richland Community College, Shilling Auditorium, 1 College Park. Richland’s 20th annual Nutcracker Ballet, with Sugar Plum Tea following the ballet for performance guests Su only, F & Sa 7pm, Su 2:30pm, $, 217-875-7211 ext. 6170.
Breakfast with Santa – December 5
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. Enjoy breakfast with Santa and Mrs. Claus and make a holiday craft, cost includes museum admission, 8-10am, $, reservations required, 217-423-5437.
Christmas Giveaway – December 5 & 12
ASP N MORE, 1138 N. State Rt. 48. Free games, snacks, take home crafts and pictures with Santa, please bring a toy to donate for local families in need, 2-6pm, 217-358-5228.
Gingerbread House Workshop – December 5
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. Decorate your own gingerbread house, 3 people per house, cost includes museum admission, limited spots available, 10-11:30am, $, reservations required, 217-423-5437.
Vespers – December 5-6
Millikin University, Kirkland Fine Arts Center, 1184 W. Main St. Millikin’s annual traditional Vespers (Evening Prayers), the beautiful seasonal production performed by 350 student singers and instrumentalists featuring carols, anthems and candlelight, 3 & 7pm, $, 217-424-6318.
Christmas Dinner with the Garden Club – December 8
Oglesby Mansion, 421 W. William St. Christmas dinner and program by Elaine and Ellen, harpist and herbalist; learn about herbs to use for making your own teas, dinner 5:30pm, program 7pm, $, reservations required, 217-864-3585.
Cocoa & Cookies with Santa – December 11
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. Enjoy hot cocoa and cookies with Santa, listen to a holiday story and make a craft, cost includes museum admission, 6-8pm, $, reservations required, 217-423-5437.
Jingle Bell Jive – December 11-20
The Little Theatre on the Square, 16 E. Harrison, Sullivan. Swing into Christmas with this Branson-style holiday show that features singing, dancing and comedy, fun for the whole family, matinees 2pm, evening shows 7:30pm, $, 217-728-7375.
Holiday in the Halls – December 12
Decatur Christian School, 137 S. Grant St., Forsyth. Craft show featuring handmade-only items, cookie walk and a delicious hot lunch, 8am-3pm, $ to purchase items, 217-877-5636.
Holiday Jazz – December 12
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, joined by guest vocalist Millikin alumna Angel Spiccia Slykas, 7:30pm, $, 217-424-6318.
Pajama Party with Santa at Scovill Zoo – December 12
Scovill Zoo, 71 S. Country Club Rd. Children ages 3-10 can wear their PJs, bring their pillows and visit with Santa while they make an ornament, decorate cookies and enjoy special animal encounters, parents must be present, 1-3pm or 5-7pm, $, 217-421-7435.
Tribute to Trans-Siberian Orchestra – December 12
Decatur Civic Center, 1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza. The Denial 3 band pays tribute to the Trans-Siberian Orchestra performing their popular music from Christmas Eve & Other Stories, and from The Lost Christmas Eve, 3 & 7pm, $, 217-422-6161.
Chamber Orchestra Advent Services – December 13
Central Christian Church, 650 W. William St. The Millikin-Decatur Symphony Chamber Orchestra joins the musicians of Central Christian Church for services of the season, a Decatur Christmas tradition, 8 & 10:30am, free, 217-428-4336.
Christmas Open House – December 13
Millikin Homestead, 125 S. Pine St. Visit James and Anna Millikin’s historical home decorated for Christmas with punch, cookies and holiday music, Sweet Treats Bakery selling a variety of homemade bakery items packaged and holiday-wrapped for gift giving or to take home, 1-4pm, free, 217-422-9003.
Victorian Christmas Tea – December 13
Oglesby Mansion, 421 W. William St. Enjoy an old fashioned Christmas celebration at Governor Oglesby’s beautiful Victorian mansion dressed for the holidays, refreshments served, 2-4pm, $ donations requested, 217-429-9422.
Christmas Extravaganza – December 15
Mt. Zion Convention Center, 1410 Mt. Zion Pkwy, Mt. Zion. Extravaganza with Santa Claus, The Amazing Dudley and the MTZ Kids Club, times TBA, $, 217-864-5424.
Christmas Luncheon with the Garden Club – December 15
Hickory Point Banquet Hall, 727 W. Weaver Rd., Forsyth. Christmas luncheon and program: Creations for the Season by Rick Orr, who will create original designs and offer them for sale, social 11am, meeting 11:30, lunch 12pm, program 1pm, $, reservations required, 217-429-7828.
A Christmas Carol – December 19-20
Decatur Civic Center, 1 Gary K. Anderson Plaza. Presented by Mid Summer Moon Productions, Sa 2 & 7pm, Su 2pm, $, 217-422-6161.
Happy Noon Year – December 31
Children’s Museum of Illinois, 55 S. Country Club Rd. A special countdown to the New Year for those who don’t stay up late, dance party, photo booth and festive crafts, confetti flies and balloon drops at noon, 10am-2pm, $, 217-423-5437.
New Year’s Eve Pops Concert – December 31
Central Christian Church, 650 W. William St. Sanctuary Concert Series with organ, piano and vocal pops performance by Jeffrey Goodspeed from Lafayette, Indiana, 7:30pm, free, 217-428-4336.
For information on how to include your fund-raising event in the Charity Datebook, contact Cultural Arts Editor Terrie Potter by email: ArtsEdit@aol.com or call 217-423-0422.