9 Best Thanksgiving Activities and Events in Illinois

Fall is a wonderful time of year in Illinois, providing the perfect season to enjoy Thanksgiving to its fullest. From Black Friday options, to volunteer opportunities, here’s our 2023's 9 Best Thanksgiving Activities and Events in Illinois.  

MD’s Sports Bar and Grill, Peoria, IL

The night before Thanksgiving is a very popular time to go out on the town. MD’s in Peoria offers great daily specials on pitchers and buckets, weekly live music, and a family-friendly environment. They also have delicious food and lots of games including pool and darts. Guests rave about the fries, pickle chips, and large drink variety. 

Handmade Market, Chicago, IL

Why not support local artisans Instead of getting trampled in a big-box store this Black Friday? Handmade Marketing in Chicago offers a wide selection of unique, handmade gifts, including handbags, glass pendants, funky jewelry, clothing, scarves, crafts, greeting cards, and more. The money you spend goes directly to the artisans. You can also watch live demonstrations by the artisans and even establish connections with your favorite artisans.

Mitchell Museum of the American Indian, Evanston, IL

November is Native American Heritage Month at the Mitchell Museum of the American Indian. Visitors come here to learn about the history, arts, and culture of the Native American people. View artifacts, art, and other ancient exhibits. Learn about Thanksgiving myths and discover the Native American point of view of the Thanksgiving story.

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Oglesby 3 Mile Turkey Trot, Oglesby, IL

This three-mile turkey trot on Thanksgiving Day is a great way to get some exercise and help the less fortunate. Bring a nonperishable item for the local food bank. The course is on the Oglesby streets; kids under ten run free. Complimentary refreshments, including Thanksgiving dressing, soda, and alcohol (over 21), are included.

Greater Chicago Food Depository, Chicago, IL

Unfortunately, one in six children in Chicago face food insecurity, but the Greater Chicago Food Depository makes it easy for anyone to make a difference. Make an immediate impact by joining the Virtual Food Drive, where every $1 you give equals three meals. Like shopping at a grocery store, you can choose nutritious food products, add them to your cart, and check out.

Thanksgiving Feast, Batavia, IL

November 19, 2023 at 11:30am

Gather friends and family at Unity of Fox Valley for a Thanksgiving Feast. Enjoy a time of fellowship and celebrate what everyone is thankful for. Help make the event special by signing up to set up, clean up, and bring a dish to share.

Basket Brigade, Chicago, IL

Basket Brigade gives Thanksgiving dinner baskets to struggling families in the local areas. Each basket feeds five family members. Join the Basket Brigade assembly line the Saturday before Thanksgiving to help this charity continue giving back to the community.

Thanksgiving Parade, Chicago, IL

The Thanksgiving Parade has been a Chicago tradition for nearly 85 years. Over a million viewers watch the parade on local channel WGN 9 Chicago every Thanksgiving morning. Floats, marching bands, and staged performances are featured in the three hours of family-friendly entertainment.

Yordy Turkey Farm, Morton, IL

Yordy Turkey Farm has raised turkeys for over 80 years. This family-owned business prides itself on raising 100 percent natural lifecycle turkeys. Their turkeys are raised old-fashioned: in an open atmosphere on non-GMO corn grown on their farm. Yordy's welcomes walk-ins but recommends reserving your products ahead of time.

This text was created by the author with the assistance of GPT-3, a large-scale language generation model developed by OpenAI. The author reviewed, edited, and revised the draft language to their satisfaction and is fully responsible for the content of this publication.

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