Inspired by the Christkindlesmarkt in Nuremberg, Germany, the Christkindlmarket Chicago brings German and European traditions with international flair and local charm to Chicago now through December 20, 2015. This is Chicago's largest open-air Christmas festival and if you're looking for unusual, one of a kind ornaments with style. Here's why I recommend a trip to see it.


About 20 years ago, the market was first held on Pioneer Court in 1996. After seeing the success of the The Christkindlmarket Chicago after the first year, it has been held on Daley Plaza since 1997 on special invitation of Mayor Richard M. Daley where it still is today.

In honor of the 20th year, booth 5 at the market will feature a sampling of Christkindlmarket souvenirs. Annual souvenir mugs and Kinder Club souvenir mugs are available for sale at the event while supplies last. Can't make it to the event? Souvenir mugs are also available to purchase online for a limited time!

Jeff J Mitchell, Getty Images

I recommend this free festival because when my family and I attended a few years ago, I was amazed at the unique and wide range of eclectic ornaments that are hand-blown, painted, and cannot be found anywhere else besides this market. Classic German products like nutcrackers, cuckoo clocks, and beer steins are always incredible and sell out quickly. I was lucky enough to purchase a wooded nutcracker incense burner before it was gone.

There's also toys for all ages, jewelry, clothes, home décor, and wooden handicrafts. I love the demonstrations throughout the event like the wood carver I saw carving a unique nutcracker and then selling it right on the spot to a visitor right from his workbench.

Steve Summers, Townsquare Media Photo

All of this heritage, complete with the Daily Plaza Christmas tree, nestled within the beautiful skyline of Chicago will become an annual highlight for your family too.

To top it all off, I didn't even tell you about the great food and beverages you can partake in while shopping. I'll leave those surprises for you to find.

Bring plenty of cash and credit cards because you will love everything you see at Chicago's Christkindlmarket. Imagin how much many people off your shopping list you could check off with say, $10,000 dollars in Holiday Q Cash?