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Holiday Windows on The Magnificent Mile

The Magnificent Mile Association announced a new holiday tradition for the 29th annual BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival, featuring festive window displays from 15 cultural and community partners in storefronts available for lease along North Michigan Avenue.

"We created this new tradition as a concrete example of our commitment to the entire City of Chicago,” explains Kimberly Bares, President & CEO of The Magnificent Mile Association. "With our partner, BMO Harris Bank, and their leadership in the Invest South/West initiative, this seemed like the perfect time to find new ways to connect downtown with Chicago’s communities of color and together offer an abundance of holiday cheer in these 13-city blocks that will shine brightly through the winter months. This holiday season is not what we all hoped for, but it can be made better through remembering that we are here for one another, especially in difficult and uncertain times.”

Near or far, you can peruse photos to see what makes Chicago so special, and share your holiday traditions with #BMOLightsFest. Discover all of the holiday window displays with this map.

Cultural Partners

Four events impacted by COVID-19 have each decorated a window with artisan merchandise, prominent Chicago art, floral fashions, colorful origami, and more. 

  • Christkindlmarket

    Located at The Wrigley Building, south tower (400 N Michigan Avenue)

    Through December 31, Chicago’s beloved holiday tradition celebrates its first-ever virtual Christkindlmarket “Home for the Holidays,” featuring an online marketplace, family-friendly events, and fun interactive activities. Join all of the online festivities!

    In our window we have the Christkind, the namesake of the Christkindlmarket. In German tradition, she is the one who brings the good boys and girls presents. Check out our beloved mugs and beer steins, and trees decorated in German tradition.

    Visit christkindlmarket.com.

  • EXPO Chicago

    Located at The Drake (140 E. Walton)

    Enjoy a custom visual by prominent Chicago artist, Bob Faust, that evokes our sense of unity and hope!

    Visit expochicago.com.

     

    expochicago.com

     

  • Get Growing Foundation

    Located at 713 N. Michigan Avenue

    The Get Growing Foundation (GGF) in collaboration with Taylor & Co. Event Design pays homage to the 2020 Chicago Flower & Garden Show®, presented by 811 Chicago & Peoples Gas, that was cancelled due to COVID-19 just days prior to its scheduled March opening.

    The 2020 Show was to feature a “Hort Couture” garden, inspiring attendees with a runway-meets-the-garden exhibit. Floral and event designers created organic couture fashions that would have been on display for all our visitors to enjoy.

    As we all look for inspiration and hope this holiday season, Taylor & Co. has created visions of dancing sugarplum fairies, seasonally adorned for spring with flowering currant and peach blossoms, for summer with fuchsia orchids, and for winter with frosted sparkling pine. 

    The Get Growing Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to inspiring, educating and motivating the next generation of gardeners. The GGF mission includes bringing green to neighborhoods in needs, community impact programming and job creation with career path development.

    For more information, follow @planttruckchicago and visit GetGrowingFoundation.org.

  • Osaka Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International (World Business Chicago)

    Located at 600 N. Michigan Avenue

    In 2018, The Magnificent Mile in Chicago became sister streets with Midosuji Boulevard in Chicago’s sister city of Osaka, Japan. This display will give you a glimpse of the lights festival on our sister street in Osaka, the World Masters Games, other attractions in Osaka, as well as introduce you to Japanese culture. This display has been put together by members of the Osaka Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International, an initiative of World Business Chicago.

    Visit ChicagoSisterCities.com.

Community Partners

Nearly a dozen window displays from South and West side community partners feature a 7.5’ holiday tree and showcase cultural traditions, holiday décor, artists in residence, and neighborhood businesses in their communities.

  • Austin African-American Business Networking Association Inc. (AAABNA)

    Located at 401 N. Michigan Avenue

    The Austin Community/Soul City Corridor display features a holiday tree with all the trimmings in the festive African American colors – red, black, green.

    The top of the tree, where the star is located, includes a description of Soul City Corridor. Underneath the tree, presents are wrapped in African styled paper. Images on each side of the tree depict business owners, their logos, and other Austin Community notable sites.

    Visit aaabna.org.

  • Austin Coming Together (ACT)

    Located at 401 N. Michigan Avenue

    The Austin community invites you to join us for the holidays! Please attend one of these socially distant events to learn how much we care about each other. This display was created by Austin Coming Together (ACT), a community-based organization who has been essential in responding to the needs of Austin residents. #AustinCaresCampaign

    Visit austincomingtogether.org.

  • Claretian Associates- South Chicago

    Located at 830 N. Michigan Avenue

    Now is the time of the year where we come together and focus on the things that are important. In South Chicago, we wanted to showcase our culturally vibrant community while reminding everyone that "we're steel here". We have a vision that South Chicago will be a community of choice with a culturally vibrant and cohesive community which offers residents a safe, affordable, and opportunity-rich neighborhood.

    Visit claretianassociates.org.

  • Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community (CBCAC)

    Located at 717 N. Michigan Avenue

    For this holiday season, Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community (CBCAC) celebrates the strength and resilience in the Greater Chinatown area. We want to honor the community members who came together to assist each other, our organizations that worked collaboratively and creatively to reach solutions, and the other communities who have supported and uplifted us.

    Visit cbcacchicago.org.

  • Greater Chatham Initiative

    Located at 830 N. Michigan Avenue

    The Greater Chatham Initiative’s window showcases three generations of local music greats as they walk down East 75th Street in Chicago: Thomas Dorsey (1899-1883), who invented gospel music and wrote Precious Lord; Mahalia Jackson (1927-1971), his protégé and Queen of Gospel and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., supporter; and Chance the Rapper (1993- ), a Grammy winner, music industry disrupter, and activist.

    They saunter along the area’s new award nominated 75th Street Boardwalk on Restaurant Row. This place keeping project is located at 203-328 E. 75th Street.

    Lead artists are Karin Carter & Damon Lamar Reed.

    Visit greaterchathaminitiative.org.

  • Greater Roseland Chamber of Commerce (GRCC), SSA#71

    Located at 717 N. Michigan Avenue

    Roseland’s South Michigan Avenue Commercial District is the commercial center and heart of the Far South Side community. Roseland was once known as the Jewel of the Southside and was considered a shopping mecca. A few of the most famous places like Old Fashioned Donuts and the Ware Ranch Steakhouse (known also as the Ranch Steakhouse) still exist today and are great places to visit.

    Visit greaterroselandchamber.org.

  • I Grow Chicago

    Located at 830 N. Michigan Avenue

    Our elders watch over our community while the sunflower (the logo for I Grow Chicago) shines with love. We want you to remember that even though the holidays may look different this year, there is still a lot to celebrate. Peace on Earth Good Will to All.

    Follow @IGrowChicago and visit igrowchicago.org.

  • Little Village Chamber of Commerce (LVCC)

    Located at 540 N. Michigan Avenue

    By showcasing the Arch of Little Village, which welcomes all to a shopping strip of goods from all over Mexico, this display highlights the entrepreneurial spirt of the community.

    Costumes and cultural traditions featured: tree ornaments reflecting crafts by Mexican artisans, including Papel Picado; a Nativity Scene with figurines made of clay from Tlaquepaque, Jalisco, which is a tradition passed from generation to generation; a piñata and games; and a Carrito de Paletas, a popsicle cart from the humble vendors in Little Village.

    Visit littlevillagechamber.org.

  • Quad Communities Development Corporation (QCDC) – Shop Local Bronzeville

    Located at 401 N. Michigan Avenue

    Legacy & Future - the music, tenacity, and future of Bronzeville. More than a neighborhood: it is a concept, a memory, a destination, a place made of dreams.

    During the Great Migration, from 1915 - 1940, 5,000 African Americans moved from the rural South to Bronzeville, where they put down roots. Despite Restrictive Covenants, Bronzeville flourished, becoming home to some of our nation's greatest musicians, ballplayers, poets, artists, journalists, and scientists. Their memories echo in the streets and the beaming faces of this latest generation. Today, owing to our ancestors, our community is Bronzeville Resilient.

    A creative endeavor of 3Arts Awardee, Candace Hunter, with photography by Kaye Kaye Photography.

    Visit shoplocalbronzeville.com.

  • South Shore Chamber of Commerce (SSCC)

    Located at 401 N. Michigan Avenue

    The South Shore Cultural Center is a cultural haven that sits along Chicago's beautiful lakefront and is host to summer Jazz Festivals. These festivals attract international musicians and welcome community families to enjoy the music, natural landscape, and architectural grandeur while celebrating our historical-cultural legacy.

    Visit southshorechamberinc.org.

  • Washington Park Chamber of Commerce

    Located at 717 N. Michigan Avenue

    The Washington Park Community is proud of its history and culture.  From Jesse Binga’s King Drive home to The DuSable Museum of African American History founded by Dr. Margaret Burroughs, the Schulze Bakery, and Lorado Taft’s Fountain of Time. 

    And from Robert S. Abbott and The Defender’s Bud Billiken Parade to The African Festival of the Arts and The UniverSoul Circus, we commemorate our community’s family and culture.

    Visit thewashingtonparkcofc.org.



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