Make sure to take in the Chicago Christkindl Market in Daley Plaza this Christmas season from Nov 23 to Dec 24, 2011. The red-and-white-striped huts of the free Christkindlmarket in Daley Plaza invite holiday shoppers to take a virtual trip to storybook Germany. Christkindlmarket is a chance to savor Old World traditions while temporarily forgoing suburban malls, familiar chains and big-city department stores. It is free to peruse and the vendors at the market, gearing up for its 16th year, will offer unique treasures at one of the largest German-style Christmas markets outside of Germany.
More than 65 percent of them travel from Europe to set up shop Nov. 23-Dec. 24 in Chicago’s Loop. Imported goods at the little shopping village include nutcrackers, cuckoo clocks, wood carvings, beer steins, wooden toys and jewelry, plus ornaments of all shapes and sizes. But many merrymakers come for the German food and drink, indulging in bratwurst and potato pancakes, schnitzel and strudel. They quench their thirst with a glass of German beer or Gluhwein (hot spiced wine) served in a souvenir boot-shaped mug.Several walk-in cabins offer a warm place to shop, and the Lufthansa Festival Tent and the Timber House provide a place to relax and enjoy the goodies. Music and dance performances are scheduled at various times.