By TONIA HILL
Select Chicago Parks will host events to usher in the holiday season, according to an announcement made by the Chicago Park District.
Ellis Park, Burnham Park, and the South Shore Cultural Center are three local venues that will offer holiday programming.
Ellis Park, 3520 S. Cottage Grove Ave., will be hosting its second annual toy drive for children in need this holiday season from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., on Friday, Dec. 15. New or gently used toys can be dropped off on Friday.
On Sunday, Dec. 17, at 9:30 a.m., Burnham Park, 5491 S. Shore Dr., will be hosting a Winter Solstice Walk for teenagers. Visitors will have the opportunity to explore the path at the Burnham Wildlife Corridor and observe the natural area. Participants should meet at the Burnham Nature Sanctuary parking lot at 47th Street and Cornell Drive and should bring a set of binoculars, and dress appropriately for the weather.
Also, on Sunday the South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. Shore Drive, will be hosting a Holiday Showcase from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for teenagers. Admission is $5.
Featured performers include the Washington Park Youth Dancers and seniors. There will also be special performances by the Avalon Park Swingers Line Dancing Troupe and Mayfair Performing Co.
Also, the ice rink is now open on the Midway, 1130 Midway Plaisance. It officially opened for the season on Friday, Dec. 1, and will be open through March.