Chicago Holiday Activities for Seniors

Apr 16, 2024

Senior man building a gingerbread house with his granddaughter

As the holidays approach and as the weather gets chillier, older adults in Chicago and surrounding areas have lots of options for making the most of the season. 

You might be wondering about what you’re going to do for the holidays this year. At a community like The Admiral at the Lake, you don’t have to brainstorm for long. The combination of community culture offered by The Admiral and Chicago’s stunning winter wonderland mean you never have to go far for a bit of holiday fun.

Keep reading for a look at how seniors can spend their time at The Admiral during the holidays. We’ll also provide information on Chicago-area December senior activities.



Our Favorite Holiday Activities for Seniors in Chicago 

We all love our favorite holiday traditions, like Secret Santa, holiday shows, or singing holiday songs. Maybe in years past you hosted a Yule spectacular or went out to find a tree. Maybe this year you just feel like kicking back.

Whatever your plans, the Chicago area has many options for seniors to enjoy with their friends and family, whether or not you’re part of a senior living community. 

You can visit the Chicago Botanic Garden’s Lightscape, a beautiful holiday exhibit that dazzles the eye. Or you can go for a stroll at the annual Illumination: Tree Lights at the Morton Arboretum event. Follow the one-mile paved path to see the arboretum’s trees lit up for the season. On the path, you can even roast marshmallows and get cozy by the fire!

Feeling like a bit of shopping? Visit Chicago’s Magnificent Mile and get those holiday gifts early. Have lunch at Macy’s Walnut Room, the first restaurant that opened in a department store. In the nearby theater district, catch a holiday show before taking a walk through the historic neighborhood.

Every year, the Museum of Science and Industry hosts the annual Christmas Around the World and Holidays of Lights, an exhibit looking at how numerous cultures celebrate this time of year. You can round out a fun day, evening or weekend by spotting the Allstate CTA Holiday Train. Watch the six-car train, led by Santa in his sleigh, weave through the city. Hop aboard the decorated cars to say hi to the elves and get a piece of candy.

Beyond fun seasonal things to do in Chicago, here are some of our favorite holiday activities for seniors in a community like The Admiral.

Giving Tree

Do you want to do something nice for others during the holidays? A good suggestion is to set up a holiday tree in one of your community’s public areas. This will be your community’s giving tree! Residents can attach cold weather clothing, vouchers, or gift cards to the tree to help the less fortunate. You can also turn tree decoration into an event, where residents gather to add lights.

Decorate Your Door

A terrific way to have fun with holiday lights and light displays is to use them to decorate your apartment door. This is an amusing way to show your holiday spirit while giving you an opportunity to use any leftover decorations.

Build a Gingerbread House

Building a gingerbread house for the holidays is one of the most fun things you can do to get in the spirit. Play out yuletide fairy tales with candy dioramas or indulge your inner architect, all while snacking on candy canes, gumdrops, and frosting. Be sure to include sugar-free options! At The Admiral, you can check out our annual Department gingerbread houses.

Holiday-Themed Movie Nights

A classic cozy holiday activity, what’s more enjoyable than watching heartwarming movies with friends, family, and neighbors? You can appoint a community resident to choose the movies or vote on them and set up public viewing for whichever nights you prefer.

Have a Gift Wrapping or Holiday Party

Another wonderful option is to organize a gift wrapping party. Whether they’re presents for residents or other members of the family, it’s so much fun to gather and lightheartedly play with wrapping techniques! Every year at The Admiral, residents can attend our Resident & Staff Holiday Party to mingle and share in the holiday cheer.

Holiday Activities for Seniors at The Admiral

First things first: food! The culinary team often prepares special holiday meals for Christmas eve, Christmas day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. The Admiral is no exception, offering fine dining for a variety of tastes.

Later in the month, residents often take an organized trip to Lincolnwood Towers to view the beautiful light display. Some also like to take a stroll through the Christkindlmarket at Wrigley Park and peruse its traditional European goods and fare.

UPS at The Admiral

On Wednesdays from 10 a.m., the Andersonville UPS branch sets up shop on the sixth-floor elevator lobby. They can help you mail packages or letters. If you’re a resident at The Admiral, you get a 10% discount off your total. 

Experience Senior Living Luxury at The Admiral at the Lake

The Admiral at the Lake offers elevated senior living on Chicago’s lakefront. Our Life Plan Community offers Independent Living, Assisted Living, Memory Support, Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation. Come visit us on the lakefront and see what our community offers.