Big Week Dec. 26 - Jan. 2

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By Staff

Boxing Day

Wednesday, Dec. 26, Noon to 4 p.m. Hemingway Birthplace Museum:

Celebrate the English custom as the Hemingway family did more than 100 years ago with traditional Boxing Day festivities, including holiday music, a special Hemingway Readers Theatre production ("The Spirit of Boxing Day"), along with English tea and refreshments. $10; $7, seniors/children; free, foundation members/docents/volunteers. 339 N. Oak Park Ave., Oak Park.

Compassion and Wisdom in the New Year

Monday, Dec. 31, 8 p.m., 9:45, and 11:30 p.m., Kadampa Meditation Center:

At Prayers of Compassion for the New Year, drop in for one or more of three start times 

"for an inspiring and meaningful New Year's Eve celebration with meditation and prayers of compassion for world peace." Session begins with an introduction, followed by chanted meditation and time for quiet contemplation and reflection. Final session includes meditation on compassion for world peace. Free. All welcome.

Tuesday, Jan. 1, 10:30 a.m., 1 p.m., and 2:30 p.m., Kadampa Meditation Center:

Prayers for Wisdom in the New Year focuses on the development of pure wisdom by engaging in the "mantra, prayers, and meditations related to Tara, the female enlightened Buddha who is the embodiment of swift wisdom and protection." Free. All Welcome. Optional brunch, 11:30 a.m., $5. Drop in at the start of one or more sessions. Brunch registration/more: Questions: 13 Harrison St., Oak Park.

Look to the Stars

Thursday, Dec. 27, 7 to 8 p.m., Taylor Park:

Join NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador Mark Benson for a night of telescope viewing and a discussion of current and upcoming NASA missions and discoveries. Bring a telescope if you have one. Weather permitting. 400 Division, Oak Park.

Open House: The Legacy of Fair Housing

Wednesdays through Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Oak Park River Forest Museum:

Visit Oak Park's newest museum and the home of the Historical Society of Oak Park River Forest to see an exhibit on how Oak Park grappled with race before the 1960s and how the 1968 Fair Housing Ordinance sparked changes that still shape our villages today. Through June 2019. Also see Ghosts of Christmas Past through Jan. 12. $7; $5, Oak Park/River Forest residents; $3, students; free, members and children under 7. More:, 129 Lake St., Oak Park.

New Year's Eve at FitzGerald's 

Monday, Dec. 31, FitzGerald's Nightclub:

See Expo '76 & the Total Pro Horns, with the Outcast Jazz Band, at 9 p.m., in The Club. Expo will play a few songs, then be joined by the 12-piece big band. $40. In The Sidebar, hear the soul music of Chicago's The Heavy Sounds, 9:30 p.m. $15; $20, at door. Doors open at 8 p.m. Celebrate with party favors and a champagne toast at midnight. Tickets/more: or at the Club. 6615 Roosevelt Rd., Berwyn.

Coat and Winter Gear Drive

Through Feb. 1, Oak Park Township Administrative Office:

Help spread warmth with donations of coats, boots and other winter gear. The Community Mental Health Board of Oak Park Township is collecting items to provide to agencies and their clients within Oak Park. Drop off at 105 S. Oak Park Ave., Oak Park. 

Thank-You Note Workshop

Wednesday, Dec. 26, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., River Forest Library:  

Kids, don't forget to be grateful for your holiday gifts. Drop by the Children's Room to write your own personalized thank-you cards. Supplies provided. Grades kindergarten through 4. Questions: 708-366-5205. 735 Lathrop Ave.

DIY Snowflakes

Friday, Dec. 28, 1 to 4 p.m., River Forest Library: 

Drop in and visit the Children's Room to learn how to make your own snowflake. Supplies provided. Ages 3 to 10 with caregiver. Questions: 708-366-5205. 735 Lathrop Ave.

New Year, New You, New Journal

Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2 to 4 p.m., River Forest Library:

Bullet journaling helps unleash creativity, be mindful and reach goals. Learn how to set up a bullet journal and get organized this year. Bring your own journal or get one provided by the library. Grades 5 through 12. 735 Lathrop Ave.

Winter Wonderland Storytime

Thursday, Dec. 27, 10 to 10:30 a.m., Storytime Room, Main Library: 

It's chilly outside, but everyone will stay warm with books, songs and fun at this special all-ages storytime. Questions: 708-452-3420, 834 Lake St., Oak Park.

Kwanzaa Celebration 

Sunday, Dec. 30, 2 to 5 p.m., Veterans Room, Main Library: 

Join members of the community to celebrate Kwanzaa, a celebration of family, community and culture. All ages. Inquire: 834 Lake St., Oak Park.

Noon Year's Eve

Monday, Dec. 31, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Meeting Room, River Forest Library: 

Be the first to celebrate. Countdown to 2019 with activities, dancing and snacks with a festive flair. Children of all ages with caregivers. 735 Lathrop Ave.

New Year's Eve with Tributosaurus as The Rolling Stones

Monday, Dec. 31, 9:30 p.m., Wire:

Come celebrate the New Year while listening to the local band that morphs into an iconic band for the holiday. Doors open at 8 p.m. 21+. $45. Tickets: 6815 W. Roosevelt Rd., Berwyn.

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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