Magnificent Mile Festival of Lights Parade 2018 on Michigan Avenue in Chicago

Mickey and Minnie Mouse are the grand marshals of Chicago’s 27th annual Magnificent Mile Lights Festival parade Saturday. The parade features 40 floats, helium-filled balloons, marching bands and performers on a route that extends down Michigan Avenue from Oak Street to the Chicago River.

Related image

History of The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival

For 50 years, the trees along North Michigan Avenue have been illuminated to signal the official kick-off of the holiday season in Chicago and around the nation. With the help of over 600 volunteers, The BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival® encourages everyone to join in the spirit of the holiday season and enjoy a host of festive experiences along The Magnificent Mile®. Celebrate the magic of the Lights Festival with a book and a postcard series that highlights the colorful past of this cherished annual event!

Schedule of Events

The BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival returns in 2018 with a full lineup of activities, starting on 4:00PM on Friday, November 16 and then again at 11:00 AM on Saturday, November 17.

Free, family fun culminates in the grand Tree-Lighting Parade down North Michigan Avenue with grand marshals Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse from Walt Disney World® Resorts Florida.

Start planning with the 2018 Holiday Activity Guide, including an event map, a schedule of events, and special offers around The Magnificent Mile!

  • Friday, November 16

  • 4:00 – 8:00PM: Lights Festival Lane in Pioneer Court (401 N. Michigan Avenue) opens the evening before the parade with more than a dozen family-friendly activities from Chicago favorites and popular brands—plus live music and a visit with Santa Claus! Explore an interactive wonderland of holiday-themed activities, and sample treats from crowd favorites Garrett Popcorn, Frango, The Eli’s Cheesecake Company, and more.

  • Saturday, November 17

  • 11:00 AM – 4:00PM: Explore an interactive wonderland of holiday-themed activities at Lights Festival Lane in Pioneer Court (401 N. Michigan Avenue), including the BMO Harris Kid’s Zone. Santa Claus is always ready to greet guests, alongside more than a dozen holiday-themed activities.

  • ALL DAY: Enjoy holiday experiences and special offers at participating retailers, restaurants, and attractions around The Magnificent Mile District! Plus, being a BMO Harris customer has it’s perks!

  • BMO Harris Bank Stage

  • Live musical performances return to the BMO Harris Bank stage this year! Enjoy free concerts on Saturday, November 17, plus meet-and-greets with your favorite artists.

  • 11:30AM: Cailee Rae, sponsored by BMO Harris Bank

  • 12:30PM: DCappella performs, sponsored by Entertainment Cruises

  • 1:30PM: Cozi Zuehlsdorff performs, sponsored by Southwest Airlines

  • 2:30PM: Cody Simpson + The Tide performs, presented by T-Mobile

  • Meet & Greets

  • Don’t miss your chance to meet your favorite performers in person on Saturday, November 17! Meet & Greets require wristbands, first come first serve while supplies last. Please visit the BMO Harris Bank Helper Tent at Lights Festival Lane for more information.

  • 11:00AM: Cody Simpson + The Tide at the T-Mobile Signature Store* (700 N. Michigan Avenue)
    *Photos Only – No Autographs

  • 12:00PM: Cailee Rae in the BMO Kids Zone (Pioneer Court, 401 N. Michigan Avenue)

  • 1:00PM: DCapella in the Meet & Greet Tent sponsored by Entertainment Cruises (Pioneer Court, 401 N. Michigan Avenue)

  • 2:00PM: Cozi Zuehlsdorff in the Southwest Airlines tent (Pioneer Court, 401 N. Michigan Avenue)

  • Prepare for the parade!

  • As early as 3:30PM: Dusable Bridge (formerly Michigan Avenue Bridge) closes to pedestrian traffic.

  • 4:00PM: North Michigan Avenue closes to vehicular traffic between Oak Street and Wacker Drive.

  • 5:30-7:00PM: The BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival tree-lighting parade steps onto North Michigan Avenue at Oak Street. Grand Marshals Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse and their friends from the Walt Disney World® Resort in Florida travel down North Michigan Avenue to Wacker Drive, lighting one million lights along the way! The procession features spectacular floats, helium-filled balloons, marching bands and top musical performers. Look out for lively appearances made by Hubert the Lion, Benny the Bull and other well-known Chicago mascots from BMO Harris Bank.

  • 6:55PM: Fireworks spectacular over the Chicago River at North Michigan Avenue.

  • Watch on ABC 7 Chicago!

  • 6:00 PM: Tune in live on ABC 7 Chicago for coverage of all the excitement!

  • Want to watch the parade again? The broadcast is syndicated to more than 90% of the United States throughout the holiday season, so check your local listings!

  • Start planning with our 2018 Holiday Activity Guide, including an event map, a schedule of events, and special offers around The Magnificent Mile!

Leave a comment

Filed under Italy Travel Guides

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.