Chicago Traveler Blog

Chicago Traveler Blog

Celebrating Thanksgiving in Chicago - What's Open and Who's Serving Dinner?

Where do people go for destination Thanksgivings? While New York City is the top destination for Thanksgiving (let's face it, nobody can beat the Macy's Day Parade) Chicago is the 8th most popular destination for Thanksgiving vacations. And why shouldn't it be?

There are tons of great things to do in Chicago in November, and on a holiday where food seems to be the main event, why wouldn't you spend it in a place where food is one of the main events year round? Chicago is home to some of the best food around, and you won't have to spend your holiday eating pizza and hot dogs, but you definitely can.

Chicago Traveler can help you find all the best places you eat Thanksgiving dinner in Chicago, as well as all the holiday events, shopping and sightseeing you'll want to consider while you're here!

Facts About Chicago around Thanksgiving

  • Average flights to Chicago around Thanksgiving: around $350
  • Yes, we have a Thanksgiving Day Parade in Chicago.
  • You can certainly find Black Friday shopping deals in Chicago. Magnificent Mile is a hot spot for shopping year round, and you can only imagine the buzz in these parts on the day after Thanksgiving!

Deciding where to stay in Chicago for Thanksgiving?

  • MileNorth Hotel is hosting some of the best Thanksgiving deals in town! They've got discounted rates just for booking in advance online, shopping packages perfect for this time of year, a romance package if your Thanksgiving getaway is just the two of you and a Cyber Monday special (the Monday after Thanksgiving) if you're planning a trip at a later date.
    If you're a Chicago local, put your family up at the MileNorth while they're in town for the holidays and you'll get 20% off night rates. Rooms for as low as $111 a night!
  • The Silversmith Hotel is offering a Chicago Bears package - and yes, they've got a home game on November 25 against the Vikings! Get your Bears tickets here. This isn't their only deal though, so definitely check out the rest.
  • If you're making this a family vacation, book your suite at the Swissotel and the VIK Program gets you 50% off a second (joint) suite for the kids to live in luxury over Thanksgiving!

Where to Eat Thanksgiving Dinner in Chicago

  • Take a lunch or dinner cruise on Thanksgiving with Chicago Odyssey Cruises. Choose the afternoon lunch buffet cruise or the family Thanksgiving dinner and celebrate the holiday on a beautiful tour of Chicago by water.
  • Chicago Firehouse Restaurant will be serving up a Thanksgiving buffet until 7pm. The perfect place for a family Thanksgiving dinner on vacation. 
  • Chicago Q is serving dinner until 8pm on Thanksgiving. Enjoy a turkey dinner with traditional sides and homemade desserts. 
  • Mity Nice Neighborhood Restaurant and Bar is serving a Thanksgiving buffet from noon to 7pm, loaded with some of the traditional fixings and more!
  • Cooper's Hawk Winery and Restaurant 
  • Wildfire - There are several locations in the Chicago area, but one right near Mag Mile. Enjoy a family style Thanksgiving Day menu. Party platters will be available this day too, in case you're hosting thanksgiving dinner in your hotel room. Something special about this one, they're donating a portion of the Thanksgiving Day proceeds to The Greater Chicago Food Depository and hosting a food drive.
  • Ann Sather
  • Hannah's Bretzel serves the Thanksgiving 365 - yep, that's a Thanksgiving sandwich you can have any time of the year. But if you're looking for your leftover Thanksgiving turkey sandwich to chow down on the day after Turkey Day, this could be the way to go! Turkey, brie, cranberry. All the Thanksgiving leftovers you'd expect!
  • Check out Night Out Chicago to find all the best nightlife deals after you've stuffed yourself at dinner!

Holiday Events in Chicago

  • Magnificent Mile Lights Festival: November 19, 2016 is the date that all those beautiful lights are turned on to fill the city with holiday cheer, and light! Lots of light! There will be music performances, a parade and the shops on Mag Mile will stay open late!
  • Also on November 19th, there will be another fireworks show! We suggest enjoying these via a Chicago boat tour!
  • McDonald's Thanksgiving Day Parade: November 24, 2016 from 8am-11am CST the parade will head down State Street from Congress to Randolph. The route is approximately 1 mile long. 
  • Christmas Around the World at the Museum of Science and Industry: November 17 - January 6 - A Chicago tradition since 1942 - Stop by between 9:30am to 4:00pm and see the 45ft Christmas tree!
  • Christkindlmarket: This year is the 21st Annual Christkindlmarket! Admission is FREE! The market opens on November 18 until December 24th. Come by and relish in this German tradition turned local city gem. 
  • Turkey Day 5K in Lincoln Park is on November 24, 2016!