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Christkindlmarket lights
Photograph: Jaclyn Rivas

Christkindlmarket is officially returning to Chicago this winter

You'll be able to visit the German-inspired holiday market in Daley Plaza and Wrigleyville.

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Written by
Zach Long
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Ready to sip mugs of glühwein while shopping for ornaments and enjoying steaming plates of German cuisine? After calling off its 2020 events due to the pandemic, Christkindlmarket will return to Chicago this year, hosting markets in Daley Plaza and Wrigleyville throughout the holiday season.

Both Christkindlmarket locations will open on November 19, welcoming guests into villages of stalls stocked with handmade gifts, German food and beverages. According to a note on the Christkindlmarket website, COVID-19 health and safety regulations will be announced closer to the markets' respective openings—it's possible that the event will follow the example of summer music festivals like Lollapalooza and Pitchfork Music Festival, requiring proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test for entry.

The Christkindlmarket in Daley Plaza will remain open through Christmas Eve on December 24, open from 11am–8pm Sunday through Thursday and 11am–10pm on Friday and Saturday. The market will only be open from 11am–4pm on Thanksgiving (November 25) and Christmas Eve. A lineup of vendors hasn't been announced yet, but there's a good chance that many of your favorites will be returning.

The Wrigleyville edition of Christkindlmarket will once again take place in Gallagher Way, the plaza that's adjacent to Wrigley Field on Clark Street. While previous editions have been a bit smaller than the beloved Daley Plaza market, the Wrigleyville Christkindlmarket will remain open a little longer, closing on New Year's Eve. You'll be able to visit from 3–9pm Monday through Thursday, 11am–10pm on Friday and Saturday, and 11am–7pm on Sunday. The market will be closed on Christmas Day and will be open from 11am–4pm on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve.

For those who don't want to make the in-person trip to Christkindlmarket, a virtual marketplace on the event's website will offer items that can be delivered directly to your home. You'll be able to begin pre-ordering from the online shop on October 25.

Will DönerMen return to delicious currywurst and kebab? Will this year's Christkindlmarket mugs be boot-shaped? Will the Christkind make an appearance? We have just as many questions about the 2021 editions to Christkindlmarket as you do, and we're hoping to learn more about the markets in the coming weeks. For now, we're just grateful that this holiday tradition is coming back. The holidays in Chicago weren't quite the same without it.

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