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Lighting of the Square

A magical night of giving, celebration and tradition.
Friday, November 23 | 5:00-9:00 PM | Historic Woodstock Square

Real Woodstock is about enjoying the holidays with family and friends in one of the prettiest towns anywhere.

Woodstock's signature holiday event, Lighting of the Square, returns the day after Thanksgiving on Friday, November 23 from 5:00-9:00 PM on the charming Woodstock Square! At 7:00 PM, a giant switch will be flipped as tens of thousands of twinkling lights illuminate the Woodstock sky.

Come early and stay late for various children's activities around the Square, caroling, Santa & Mrs. Claus sightings, Elf Escape - a heated tent with food and non-profit vendors, the spectacular Christmas Tree Walk at the Woodstock Opera House and Gingerbread House Walk at the the Old McHenry County Courthouse and more! The Woodstock holiday season continues the next day with shopping for unique artisan gifts during Small Business Saturday and with other magical events throughout the holiday season.

Lighting of the Square is presented by the City of Woodstock - City Hall, the Woodstock Chamber of Commerce & Industry and Promote Woodstock.

Children's Activities

Check back soon for more information on all children’s activities during Lighting of the Square!

Elf Escape (Heated Tent)

East Jackson Street (north of the former Harris Bank building) will be closed off for a fully heated tent with non-profit and food vendors.

Check back soon for a full list of non-profit and food vendors!

Santa's Hut With Santa and Mrs. Claus

Want to tell Santa what you want for Christmas this year? Tell him at Santa's Hut in the park on the Square! Santa's Hut will be open the night of Lighting of the Square and during the holiday season.

Gingerbread House Walk

The best gingerbread houses in McHenry County can be found at the Old McHenry County Courthouse starting the night of Lighting of the Square!

Want to enter your house into the contest? Register by Saturday, November 17 or Sunday, November 18 for a spot in the contest. Click here for more information! 

The gingerbread houses will be on display until December 25 during open hours at the Old Courthouse Art Center.

Christmas Tree Walk

The Christmas Tree Walk at the Woodstock Opera House has the biggest and brightest trees in McHenry County!

Stop by the Community Room in the Woodstock Opera House after the official lighting at 7:00 PM and see decorated trees from over 30 organizations. The trees will be on display until December 30 during normal Opera House hours.

Small Business Saturday (Saturday, November 24)

Start checking items off your holiday shopping list on the Woodstock Square on Small Business Saturday, November 24. The charming Woodstock Square is full of one-of-a-kind vendors and retailers offering unique artisan goods and treats.

Your favorite boutiques and stores in Woodstock and McHenry County will be offering deals all day! Check back later for a list of participating businesses.