Smile Politely

Weekender: December 6-8

Friday, December 6th

Have some hot chocolate, Bossa Nova, all weekend, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. + Saturday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., about $5

It’s just about officially winter, and there’s nothing quite as nice as some hot chocolate — well, maybe hot chocolate with booze? Bossa Nova makes a delicious hot chocolate, but sadly, doesn’t spike their cocoa with alcohol. There’s nothing to say you can’t get the hot chocolate and take it home and spike it yourself. Just a thought. (JH) Photo by Jessica Hammie

Shop for locally made art and crafted goods at the Mistletoe Market, Lincoln Square Mall, 4 to 10 p.m., bring $ to shop

If you read my recent holiday art gifting guide, you’ll know that this six-hour multi-artist event kicks off the arts and crafted goods shopping season in a big way. Check the Facebook event page for the full list of amazing artists and artisans participating in this year’s market. (DD) Image from Facebook event page

See the Dance at Illinois BFA Class of 2020 thesis concert, Dance Rehearsal Space at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 p.m., free

The Dance at Illinois students have bringing it this season and with a title like “Compulsive Motion” I fully expect this performance to be a feast of high-energy movement. Featuring work by Michelle Burns, Kaleigh Dent, Mary Kate Ford, Lindsey Jennings, Madeline Mellinger, Emily Schwartz, and Alyssa Trelz. You can also catch it on Saturday, also at 7:30 p.m. Come support these incredible dancers and enjoy a night out sans admission charge. (DD) 

Grab a beer and enjoy some holiday brass, Riggs Taproom, 5 p.m., only pay for what you drink

The University of Illinois Brass Quintet will be providing life holiday music for patrons at Riggs Taproom. While you’re there, check out the German Christmas Market that will be happening from 4-8 p.m. on Friday (and 2-7 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday). If you’re slow to getting in the holiday season, this will be a great opportunity to getcha in the mood. (BH)

Saturday, December 7th

Continue your holiday shopping at local markets, locations vary, prices vary

Didn’t find everything you need at the Mistletoe Market? Well there are many more opportunities this weekend for supporting local vendors and finding some unique gifts. [CO][LAB] is hosting a pop-up on Saturday and Sunday, featuring pipapo jewelry and NORDEN at home goods. Shop Made by MEW at Hopscotch, where you can eat yummy things while browsing Madeleine Wolske’s handmade jewelry. Looking for a bit more weirdness? Try the Misfit Market at Cafeteria + Co. There will be a wide range of items, from earrings to plushies to zines, and a bonus of live music. Click on the above links for info on locations and hours. (DD) Photo from Hopscotch Bakery + Market Facebook page

Enjoy some barrel-aged beer with live music, Pour Bros. Taproom, 12 p.m. to midnight, prices vary

Seventeen beers at Pour Bros. Taproom will have a flavorful twist from barrels that have stored spirits like bourbon, rum, and gin. Included in the selection of beers at Hibeernation will be stouts, IPAs, ciders, and meads, all which have been aged for months in wooden barrels. As usual, the cost is determined by the amount of beer poured. Live music will begin at 8:30 p.m. (SP) Photo by Steven Pratten

Expand your musical horizons with the UIUC Balinese Gamelan, Music Building Auditorium, 2 p.m., Free

The University of Illinois Balinese Gamelan will be performing their end-of-semester concert this Saturday, and it’s free and open to the public. Under the direction of I Ketut Gede Asnawa, the concert will feature new and tradition Balinese gamelan music with both the UIUC and Community Gamelan performing. (BH) 

Hear local residents share their stories, Independent Media Center, 2 to 5 p.m., free

Cunningham Township Supervisor’s Office and UIUC Urban Planning Students are hosting afternoon featuring local residents sharing their lived experiences. Our Stories, Our Place, Our Resilient Selves is designed to “amplify the stories of our neighbors deeply impacted by intersecting systems of oppression that produce homelessness, mass incarceration, and violence but also hope, resilience, and healing in segregated Champaign County.” Soul food will be provided. (JM) Photo from Facebook event

Have a drink at Punch!, 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., about $10,

Have you been to this bar in Downtown Champaign? We just published a review of it, so you should read that before you go. It has cocktails (duh), as well as snacks and desserts. It’s a lovely date night location, but you can easily meet friends or family instead of a romantic partner. The seasonal menu rotates, so get in and try some things before they’re off the menu. (JH) Photo by Julie McClure

Hike and drink beer, Busey Woods/25 O’Clock Brewing, 3:30 p.m., price of beer

Champaign Outdoors is hosting a Happy Hour Hike, where you can enjoy a sunset hike through Busey Woods (we won’t talk about how depressing it is that a sunset hike starts at 3:30 p.m.) then a gathering at 25 O’Clock to reward yourself for all the exercising. Seems like a delightful way to spend a couple of hours. (JM) 

Celebrate the launch of The Collective’s fifth issue, Urbana, 8 p.m. to midnight, $5 at the door 

Issue 005 of The Collective is out and that’s reason enough to raise a glass, or cup (which will be included in your $5 door fee). Enjoy live music, order a copy of the issue, and toast to the continued success of this locally made art publication. Find out more here. (DD) Image from Facebook event

Sunday, December 8th

Stock up on Chanukah supplies, Sinai Temple Gift Shop, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., prices vary

I already feel like I’ve been posting a lot about Christmas because that’s what it does. It just tends to take over all of December. But Chanukah is also on the horizon (it begins December 22nd), and Sinai Temple has a Chanukah Showcase happening this Sunday where you can find all sorts of items for your celebration. If you miss that day, there will be another opportunity the following Sunday. (JM)

Attend a Tasting Party, Prairie Fruits Farm, noon to 4 p.m., $10

Prairie Fruits Farm is the most magical place in C-U, and this weekend you can stop by to try some delicious cheese, condiments, and beer or wine. For $10 (plus tax), you’ll get two 2-ounce pours of booze, three cheese samples, and two condiment samples. You’ll learn about the items and how they’re made, as well as how and when and why things pair well together. Not interested in doing this tasting party? The Real Stand Farm Store will be open during the same hours so you can do a little shopping or grab a scoop of gelato. (JH) Photo from the Facebook event page

Have a Sunday funday at a brunch & drag show, Clark Bar, 11 a.m., $25

Clark Bar has been intermittently serving brunch for the past few months, but this Sunday’s Wigs & Waffles will also come with a drag show and afterparty. The brunch buffet will begin at 12 p.m. with a drag show in Clark Bar and then the party heads to the basement in GlowCU, Champaign’s new blacklight glow bar. Tickets include the brunch buffet, a bottle of champagne, and the afterparty. (SP) Photo from Facebook event page

Get your holiday swing (dance) on, Philips Recreation Center, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., free

Hosted by CU Community Swing Dance and the Urbana Park District, and featuring live music by New Orleans Jazz Machine, this dance night is guaranteed to remind you of what a holiday gathering should be: fun! All dancers welcome. Donations requested at the door to cover the facility cost. (DD)


All event information is accurate to the best of our abilities, but sometimes we make mistakes and sometimes event information, times, prices, etc., change after we look them up. Whenever possible, we’ve provided a link to the original event page; you should always double-check the source before you make any firm plans. Thanks for your understanding.

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