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The BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival® Returns to
Kick off the Holidays, November 16 - 17


The 27th Annual BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival rings in the 2018 holiday season with two days of free, family-friendly activities. The celebration culminates in an evening tree-lighting parade along North Michigan Avenue.

Grand Marshals Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse from Walt Disney World® lead the parade.


Guests can enjoy two days of family-friendly activities to kick off the holiday season the weekend before Thanksgiving. The festival begins at Lights Festival Lane on Friday afternoon and continues throughout the day on Saturday. Crowd favorites such as the BMO Harris Kids Zone; and treats from Garrett Popcorn, Eli’s the Cheesecake Company, and more will return this year—along with Santa Claus himself.

Beginning at 5:30 p.m. CST on Saturday evening, Grand marshals Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse from Walt Disney World®, will lead a magical tree-lighting procession as they illuminate more than one million lights along The Magnificent Mile. The procession features spectacular floats, helium-filled balloons, marching bands and top musical performers. Look out for lively appearances by Hubert the Lion, Benny the Bull, and other well-known Chicago mascots from BMO Harris Bank.

The Lights Festival parade is broadcast live on ABC7 Chicago and aired in more than 90% of the nation during the holiday season, with repeat airings in multiple markets.

The days’ activities are free and open to the public. For a complete schedule of events and special holiday offers from area businesses, visit


The Magnificent Mile district, Chicago, IL

Lights Festival Lane:
Pioneer Court, 401 N. Michigan Avenue

Lighting Procession: North Michigan Avenue from Oak Street to Wacker Drive

Fireworks Display: North Michigan Avenue and the Chicago River



Friday, November 16

4:00 – 8:00 pm CST:
Lights Festival Lane (401 N. Michigan Avenue) opens with more than a dozen family-friendly activities from Chicago favorites and popular brands—plus live music and a visit with Santa Claus!

Saturday, November 17

11:00 am – 4:00 pm CST        

The fun continues at Lights Festival Lane (401 N. Michigan Avenue). 

5:30 pm CST:
The BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival lighting procession steps off from Oak Street and Michigan Avenue.

6:00 pm CST:

Live broadcast of the Lights Festival parade begins on ABC7 Chicago.


6:55 pm CST:
Lights Festival draws to a grand conclusion with a spectacular fireworks display over the Chicago River at Michigan Avenue and Wacker Drive.

Throughout the holidays:
Special holiday and event offers continue throughout The Magnificent Mile district. 

About BMO Harris Bank

BMO Harris Bank provides a broad range of personal banking products and solutions through nearly 600 branches and fee-free access to over 40,000 ATMs across the United States. BMO Harris Bank’s commercial banking team provides a combination of sector expertise, local knowledge and mid-market focus throughout the U.S. For more information about BMO Harris Bank, go to the company fact sheet. Banking products and services are subject to bank and credit approval. BMO Harris Bank N.A. Member FDIC. BMO Harris Bank is part of BMO Financial Group, a highly diversified financial services provider with total assets of CDN$765 billion (as of July 31, 2018), and more than 45,000 employees.

About The Magnificent Mile®
The Magnificent Mile® is Chicago’s premier destination, offering more than 460 stores, 275 restaurants, 60 hotels, unique museums and entertaining attractions to more than 20 million visitors each year. As one of the Great Avenues of the World®, The Magnificent Mile district features extraordinary shopping, critically-acclaimed dining, world-class hotel accommodations, seasonal event campaigns and exceptional urban landscaping with more than 52 separate parkway gardens that reflect the changing seasons and complement the unique architectural beauty of Chicago. For more information, visit or follow The Magnificent Mile on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About The Magnificent Mile Association

Organizer of BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival®, The Magnificent Mile Association is a private, non-profit membership organization with a mission of preserving, promoting, and enhancing one of Chicago’s most unique neighborhoods. The organization represents 700 members including retailers; hotels; restaurants; popular attractions; and commercial, institutional and residential properties.  For more information, visit 

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Adam Skaf
Senior Public Relations Manager, The Magnificent Mile Association

(312) 344-2330