Big Week Dec. 12-19

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By Staff

"A Christmas Carol" Community Reading

 Sunday, Dec. 16, 2 to 4 p.m., Pleasant Home:

Gather around the fire and listen to Charles Dickens' classic read by community members. Selected children invited to read lines from "A Visit from St. Nicholas" before the main story. Free; includes hot chocolate and cookies inside the historic home decorated for the holidays. Both self-guided and docent-led tours of the National Historic Landmark in its holiday splendor are also available, Thursdays through Sundays; more: 217 Home Ave., Oak Park.

Candlelight Vigil to End Gun Violence

Thursday, Dec. 13, 7 p.m., Oak Park Temple B'Nai Abraham Zion:

This year's vigil honors the work of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (named by the shooter in Pittsburgh's Tree of Life Synagogue). Bring a small holiday gift/gift card, non-perishable food item or financial donation. Sponsored by OP Temple, MOMS Demand Action OP-Austin, Waging Peace of First United Church of OP, Congregations Committed to Peace, Gun Responsibility Advocates, and Ascension Peace and Justice Committee. All are welcome. Questions:, 708-383-8619. 1235 N. Harlem Ave, Oak Park.   

Art Exhibitions

Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 15 and 16, 1 to 6 p.m., Gallery Pink:

See "Resonance," with paintings by Janice Elkins and sculptures by Gina Lee Robbins, who create "abstract works that often elicit a visceral response." This exhibition of recent works is the result of a decade-long dialogue, portraying the synchronous rhythms between their exploration of form, tone and emotion. To view outside gallery hours: 708-648-3131, 708-837-6126. 149 Harrison, Oak Park.

Opening Saturday, Dec. 15, 3 to 5 p.m., Art Gallery, Main Library:

At "Bridging the Gap" mosaics and paintings by Judy and Bridget Steed are featured that reflect on "change, transition, and the in-between space" found when shifting from old to new. Exhibit through Dec. 31. A portion of purchases benefits Good Memories Encore Choir, which supports people with memory loss and caregivers. 834 Lake St., Oak Park.

Oak Park String Academy Benefit Concert

Saturday, Dec. 15, 2 p.m., Grace Lutheran Church:

Hear violin and cello performances by faculty and students, beginner through advanced. Free; 

donations encouraged to support Hephzibah Children's Association: 7300 Division St., River Forest.

Free Readers Ensemble: The Cocktail Hour

Sunday, Dec. 16, 3 p.m., Nineteenth Century Club:

In the mid-1970s, upstate New York, a playwright returns to his family's house, bringing a play which he has written about them. He wants their permission, but as the martinis flow so do the recriminations and revelations, both funny and poignant. Free. 178 Forest Ave., Oak Park.

Ross Barney Architects

Monday, Dec. 17, 1:15 p.m., Nineteenth Century Club:

Architect and Senior Project Manager Ryan Giblin presents some of the complexities, challenges and successes of recent works, including the Chicago Riverwalk, CTA Morgan Street Station and the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland. $15, requested donation. More: 178 Forest Ave., Oak Park.

Voices of Oak-Leyden

Thursday, Dec. 17, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Main Library:

Catch the holiday tour of The Oak-Leyden Adult Choir, comprising participants in Oak-Leyden's Lifelong Learning Centers and Residential Services. They are said to bring "joy to all who hear them." 834 Lake St., Oak Park. 

Select Pix: "The Nutcracker"

Tuesday, Dec. 18, 10 a.m., noon, and 7 p.m., Lake Theatre:

See the theatrical premiere of Tchaikovsky's ballet performed by Staatsballett Berlin in a "charming and spectacular traditional production. $8.50; $6, matinee/seniors/children. Info: 1022 Lake St., Oak Park.

CAST Theater Festival: Homefront

Thursday, Dec. 13, through Sunday, Dec. 16, Auditorium, Percy Julian Middle School:

Julian Middle School's theater students present a series of plays set during World War II. Come be inspired by tales of heroism and survival.

  • Letters to Lucerne – the story of girls at a Swiss boarding school during the war (Thursday, 7:30 p.m.) 
  • Kindertransport – tells of a mission to rescue Jewish children (Friday, 7:30 p.m.) 
  • Cry Havoc – the true story about nurses on Bataan, Philippines (Saturday, 7:30 p.m.)
  • Decision Height - a tale about female WWII pilots (Sunday, 3:30 p.m.)

More: $10; $5, students/seniors. Tickets: 416 S. Ridgeland, Oak Park. 

Multiple Goods Fair

Saturday, Dec. 15, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday, Dec. 16, Noon to 6 p.m., Compound Yellow:

Visit this showcase for artists, makers, and craftspeople who have come together with their creative, useful, well-made, sustainable and conceptual objects. Opens with a reception Friday, Dec. 14, 5 to 9 p.m. Purchase gives back to the community. 244 Lake St., Oak Park.

Kathy Kelly, Peace Activist

Sunday, Dec. 16, 10 a.m., Third Unitarian Church:

Kelly, co-coordinator of Voices for Creative Nonviolence, will speak about her experiences 

protesting. She has protested in Iraq, Afghanistan, Gaza, domestically against US drone policy and the ongoing attacks on famine-imperiled Yemen. Questions: 773-626-9385. 301 N. Mayfield, Chicago.

Calendar Events

As you've likely noticed, our Calendar has changed to Big Week. Fewer items, higher profile. If you would like your event to be featured here, please send a photo and details by noon of the Wednesday before it needs to be published. We can't publish everything, but we'll do our best to feature the week's highlights.

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