Wednesday January 17th 2018

“Winter Wonderfest 2017/18

For 17 years, I have been bringing my grandkids to Navy Pier for their annual, indoor festival, Winter Wonderfest! While it has seen many changes over these years, the improvements have been great and the ease of entering the indoor amusement park and getting through the crowds gets better each year. This year, due to the crazy schedule of my grandkids and the “Santa” scene that I am involved with, we almost missed this special event. The old saying is” better late than never”, so despite the craziness of our schedules, Saturday, we spent the day at Navy Pier.

For those of you unfamiliar with this special event, what they do is take the Festival Hall Section of Navy Pier and convert it into a Winter Wonderland with slides and rides, a cute little Wondertown with great characters who come out and play, a spectacular ice skating rink, visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus, an area called Jingle Gym Junior ( for the little tykes) and lots of great snacks and dining adventures at affordable prices.

Climbing Walls, Merry-Go_Round, Tilt-O-Whirl, the Cliff Hanger, Bumper Cars, slides of all types, great tubing fun, the cocoa cups, mini-golf and great fun for all the family is what is in store for your adventure and pleasure. While it is gone for this season, we know that season 18 will be part of the Winter that will come in 2018. This year, the ticket also included a cozy ride on the new Centennial Wheel located just West of Shakespeare Theater. Look for the opening to be around December 1st of 2018 and to get info, check out http://www.navypier.orgwhere you can see all of the amazing events that Navy Pier holds in store for you and your family.

We brought the girls, Sarah and Rebecca, who felt that the rides and slides have been improved to attract some of the older kids. The only problem that we found with the festival is that they have limited seating areas, so when you grab a sumptuous funnel cake ( with ice cream or plain) you had to search out a place to sit and enjoy. Might I suggest that next year, the organizers add some tables and chairs by all of the food areas, not just the main court.

Other than that, they enjoyed every minute of the 6 hours that we spent enjoying the wonder and awe of Winter Wonderfest edition #17.

I am sure they will continue to add to this event each year and bring more thrills to your family


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