MONTICELLO — Allerton Park and Retreat Center’s annual winter events will kick off on tonight (Dec. 3) with Opening Night of the Holiday Showcase presented by Sterling Wealth Management and Holiday GLOW presented by the U of I Community Credit Union. Both events will continue through the weekend (Dec. 4-5), with GLOW remaining open through most of December and into January. All events will be held at the estate, 515 Old Timber Road, Monticello.
After hosting a virtual Showcase last year, Allerton staff is excited to welcome the public to the Mansion again, and has been able to increase amenities with the support of event sponsors, including presenting sponsors Sterling Wealth Management and the U of I Community Credit Union.
“We were able to invest in some updated décor inside, and host new art pieces outside to make the experience even more magical,” explained Retreat Center Manager Jordan Zech. “We’re so thankful to be able to provide this opportunity to the community, and especially thankful for their support, attendance, and sponsorships.”
In the Mansion, Zech worked with Bill Haworth, who is known locally for his design capabilities, as well as several Allerton volunteers, who decorated over 20 trees, the grand staircase, balconies, rooms, and hallways.
“It took Bill and his team six 10+ hour days to complete – and their dedication shows in the final result!” said Zech. “As a staff, we see the future of Allerton and how we can grow and make activities like the Showcase and GLOW bigger and better. Community investment means everything in getting our events to where we want them to be.”
Limited tickets are still available for Opening Night on December 3 (5-9pm), where attendees can shop at the Holiday Showcase in the Mansion, view illuminated gardens and artwork at Holiday GLOW, enjoy live musical performances, and purchase food and drinks from the Greenhouse Café and food trucks.
Both events continue Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 4 and 5. Holiday Showcase (9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) attendees can enjoy a buffet lunch (limited reservations remain on Sunday only), as well as Aaric Kendall of Double A Carving Co. creating an ice sculpture outside the Mansion (Sat., 3 to 5 p.m. and Sun., 1 to 3 p.m.). Holiday GLOW (5 to 9 p.m.) will feature food and drink options and fires in the Meadow.
“It sure is nice to see winter at the Park come back to life,” said Allerton Executive Director Derek Peterson. “It’s especially meaningful this year to see the community come together under one roof. We are grateful to be able to host these local artists and organizations, and give them an avenue to interact with the public who wants to support them.”
Additional winter events include a Swag Making Workshop hosted by the Greenhouse Café and Illinois Willows (Dec. 8) and Mansion Public Tours (Dec. 14). For more information and to purchase tickets visit allerton.illinois.edu or call 217-333-3287.