Giveaway: Four Tickets to the Fox Valley Nutcracker at the Batavia Fine Arts Centre

Monday, Nov 13th, 2017 by

Updated on Nov. 17 at 6:45 p.m.: Congrats to Mariclaire Ferrone, who says she “loves climbing into the car with a nice hot chocolate (milkshake for the kids) and driving around to see the holiday lights.” You’ve won the four tickets! I’ll be in touch to arrange the details. Thanks to everyone for sharing holiday traditions here, and thanks to the Fox Valley Nutcracker for making this giveaway possible! 


Do you feel that chill in the air? Did you see the snow flurries? Yep, it’s time to get ready for the holidays, and one of my own family’s traditions is seeing a production of the classic ballet “The Nutcracker” every year.


One great option is the Fox Valley Ballet’s production of “The Fox Valley Nutcracker” being performed Nov. 25-26 over Thanksgiving weekend at the Batavia Fine Arts Centre. This show will feature lavish sets, festive costumes, exciting choreography and Tchaikovsky’s magical score – plus young dancers from more than 20 dance studios throughout the western suburbs of Chicago, guest stars from the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago and Ballet 5:8!


I have four tickets to give away to one lucky Go West reader. I’ll tell you about how you win the tickets in a moment, but first a bit more about the show.


Photo courtesy of the Fox Valley Nutcracker.


Performances are Saturday, Nov. 25, at 2 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 25, at 7 p.m., and Sunday, Nov. 26, at 2 p.m. Tickets range from $20 to $40 and can be purchase online here or by calling the box office at 630-937-8930.


The show is being put on by Fox Valley Ballet, a 501(c3) organization with a mission to bring the joy and artistry of dance to the Fox Valley region through pre-professional ballet training and performances.


“Our biggest goal this year was to bring together the large community of many talented young dancers, and we did just that,” said Ashlie Andersen, the artistic director of the Fox Valley Nutcracker.  “We have nearly 100 cast members this year, including students and professional dancers, and we pride ourselves on bringing an elaborate, upscale production to the western suburbs of Chicago that includes everything from moving sets, aerial work and professional guest performers. The production this year will include additions to our sets, flying effects and some special surprises for the audience to enjoy!”


But for Ashlie and her dancers, this is more than just a performance. She’ll be taking several of the lead characters from the “Nutcracker” to visit children in the pediatric unit at Central DuPage Hospital and hand out gifts a few days before Christmas. They will also visit the Ronald McDonald House in Winfield to dance excerpts from the show and cook a meal for the families there.


Sounds like the kind of production you want to support, right?


So now about those free tickets! I have four free tickets to give away to one lucky Go West reader. The tickets are for the 7 p.m. show on Saturday, Nov. 25. To enter, all you have to do is answer the following question: What is your family’s favorite holiday tradition?


Remember to leave your email so we can contact you if you win. The winning comment will be picked using


For a 2nd entry, you can share news of this giveaway on a social media outlet of your choice. Just come back here and let us know where you shared it, and earn your 2nd entry. Again, please leave your email.


Giveaway starts now and will end at 6 p.m. Central on Thursday, Nov. 16. Winning reader must respond to an email alerting her by noon central time on Tuesday, Nov. 21, in order to collect tickets.


Photo courtesy of the Fox Valley Nutcracker.


Here’s the fine print: No purchase necessary. Offer subject to availability. Offer does not apply to previously purchased tickets. Promotion cannot be combined with any other offer. There is a maximum of two entries per person. Tickets are not transferable. Contest will end at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017. Winner will be picked at random by If the winner does not respond to an email alerting them by noon on Nov. 21, Go West Young Mom has the right to choose another winner via Open to U.S. residents 18 and older. Tickets are for the Saturday, Nov. 25, at 7 p.m. performance and will be available for pick-up at the box office. Prize is valued at about $108.


Remember, just answer the question in the comment section below and leave your email so we can let you know if you win: What is your family’s favorite holiday tradition?


Thank you to the Fox Valley Ballet for making this giveaway possible. Here’s hoping your family has a sweet (as a sugarplum) holiday season!


125 thoughts on “Giveaway: Four Tickets to the Fox Valley Nutcracker at the Batavia Fine Arts Centre

  1. Sarah Setiadi

    We love going to the German Christmas Market every year for delicious food, German candies, and perusing handmade items from around the world.

  2. Emily Palmer

    Our favorite tradition is Santa coming to visit us on Xmas Eve and bringing everyone socks and OJs that we wear to bed that night to get ready for opening presents on Xmas Day.

  3. Tara Burghart Post author

    Nichole S. from FB (link problem) We get our live tree and decorate the day after Thanksgiving. We give our neighbors & mechanic baked goods every year. I hang crocheted Christmas socks my aunt made when I was a baby. We hang ornaments from my hubby’s and my childhood

  4. Kristin

    We put up our tree the day after thanksgiving and each person gets a new ornament. We then order pizza!

  5. Tara Burghart Post author

    Marla Folkerts on FB (link problem) We drive thru Mooseheart and Phillips Park Zoo to look at the lights. Most of the ornaments on our tree are from our childhood.

  6. Tara Burghart Post author

    Tracy Reed Jeffrey on FB (link problem) We always get an ornament when we go on vacation and love to remember all the places as we put them on the Christmas tree.

  7. Tara Burghart Post author

    Kim Flores on FB (link problem) As kids, my mom always gave us one gift to open on Christmas Eve (they were always pajamas) Now, i do the same with my daughter. 🎅

  8. Joyce

    We like to drive around and look at lights. The kids write thank you notes and put them in the mailboxes of the housss they especially like!

  9. Tara Burghart Post author

    Mallory Peterson on FB (link problem) One of my favorite things that we do is my girls and I bake a cake and decorate it on Christmas Eve. Then we sing happy birthday to Jesus and have cake for breakfast on Christmas

  10. Erin Lamaster

    We always had ham and turkey sandwiches on Christmas Eve growing up. Now I host and we do the same.

  11. Tara Burghart Post author

    Mariclaire Ferrone on FB (link problem) I love climbing into the car with a nice hot chocolate (milkshake for the kids) and driving around to see the holiday lights.

  12. Tara Burghart Post author

    Joyce Counihan on FB (link problem) We take the train downtown and go to see the decorations the day before Thansgiving. All the fun, none of the crowds!

  13. Tara Burghart Post author

    Julianne Darche Fontechia on FB (link problem) Every year, my best friends’ family and my family decorate gingerbread houses the day after Thanksgiving. It has to be going on 20+ years. It’s more amazing now seeing our children doing the decorating.

  14. Michelle

    All snuggled up together at night on Christmas watching It’s a Wonderful Life. After all of the weeks of prep and great memories made this one is my favorite way to wrap it all up.

  15. Veronica Kernler

    Favorite Holiday Traditions (Sorry, I just couldn’t narrow it down to one!):
    Holiday Hotcakes (pancakes)
    Christmas pjs and movie
    Mooseheart lights
    Watching Love Actually after the kiddos go to bed
    Making Christmas goodies and giving them to neighbors, mail carrier, and garbage man
    So many more…!!! 🎅🏼🎄

  16. Deidra Anderson

    Since adopting our daughter, everything about Christmas is truly magical. Every. Single. Thing. ❤️ And I’ve have to say that sipping hot cocoa together is currently our favorite tradition. She’s three and thinks it’s the absolute best thing in the world! #blessed

  17. Becky Pomazak

    We love picking out a special new ornament each year that is meaningful for this past year. It gets prime position on the tree! Also excited to start a new tradition for my 4 year old twin girls this year where they get to shop and pick out a gift for the other one for the first time!

  18. Deidra Anderson

    Since adopting our daughter, everything about Christmas is truly magical. Every. Single. Thing. ❤️ And I’d have to say that sipping hot cocoa together is currently our favorite tradition. She’s three and thinks it’s the absolute best thing in the world! #blessed

  19. Lauren Duddles

    We love packing some hot cocoa and snacks, and driving through Mooseheart to see all the lights!!

  20. Tanya Copeland

    Our family tradition is going to the different Nutcracker ballet performances in the area. This year will be my daughter’s first performance.

  21. Amber Hosey

    Decorating for Christmas on Thanksgiving night and then driving around to look at Christmas lights on Christmas night.

  22. Rebecca Stock

    We load up the kids and have popcorn and hot chocolate while driving to look at the Christmas lights.

  23. Jamie Saam

    It is not Christmas without a drive down Lehnertz Ave in Aurora. Now that the boys are old enough, they read the pages in the front yards that tell the story of the birth of Jesus.

  24. Amanda

    I love that we go downtown Chicago to Marshall Fields/Macy’s and we each get to pick out an ornament. My mom started doing this with her family as a young girl and we still do it with my parents, siblings and our spouses and kids.

  25. Amy Maly

    My Mom had a Christmas book that she received from her Grandmother…as a child, it about 60 years old. She shared with me and my son, how very special this book was to her. I felt like I was there in her living room with her. She said, snow was falling outside her Chicago bungalo home, relatives were coming in and she could smell the ham cooking as she laid on the floor facing the tree admiring the colorful pictures and reading to her hearts content about the magic of Christmas. Each year she brought it out of the special place in the closet and I would request a mutual favorite, the story of Suzie’s Christmas star. A few years ago my Mom wrote me a note about passing it on to my son, her grandson, and eventually on to my great grandkids someday. My Mom died unexpectedly of a cardiac arrest last November. It was the first year we did not hear her read to us and hope to get back to it someday. In the meantime, we are trying to create new memories until our hearts mend a bit more. Christmas at my house was not found in a mound of presents, but with a couple generations gathered around an amazing woman who just so happened to have an amazing book.

    1. Tara Burghart Post author

      Thank you for sharing this wonderful memory, Amy. I’m so sorry for the loss of your mom – this Christmas season is going to be particularly hard for you. I am sure she was so proud of you and her grandson … all year round! – Tara

  26. Sarah Finn

    So many fun traditions, but a couple of my favorites are going to my parents tree farm and cutting down the perfect Christmas tree, and singing carols at our church’s Christmas Eve service.

  27. Natalie

    Our favorite tradition is checking out the Larsen’s light show in Elburn. Our forst year living out this way, we used the ride to get our sleeping babes to nap for a bit, after that it just sort of stuck!

  28. Valeria Rodriguez

    As a dancer since a was a little girl my mom and dad will go watch the nutcracker every year and the day after we will make the nativity scene. I am not from the states but this has been a special tradition for us no matter where we are around the world.

  29. Jessica Barnes

    Our favorite family holiday tradition is getting to open new pjs on Christmas Eve and then reading the Polar Express. This is something I always did with my parents and now have started with my own children. 🔔

  30. Rachel MacPebbles

    We have a tradition during our Christmas Eve dinner. We go around and say one thing that we are thankful for from the year. We do this because we can’t always be all together at Thanksgiving.

  31. Jessica’ Faivre

    We collect ornaments every year based on events, travel or photo ornaments of the kids. We all love looking at them and talking about all the memories

  32. Kira Moneze

    Doing all the drive thru lights (Mooseheart, Lehnertz Ave, Phillips Park) while in our PJs and drinking hot cocoa.

  33. Michelle DiDomenico

    Boy, would I love to win those tickets, it would be such a nice way to start my holiday season!

  34. Sharon Yarbrough

    My favorite holiday tradition is baking Christmas cookies with my mom. Every year we pick out one day, near Christmas, and spend the whole day baking cookies, talking, laughing, and listening to Christmas songs. It is a tradition that I now am able to share with my 3 year old son.

  35. Stephany A

    Our family’s favorite holiday tradition is going to the Electric Christmas Parade in Saint Charles : )

  36. Jackie Chessani

    My fave holiday tradition is one my mom did for my sis and I as kids, I have my girls open one gift on Christmas eve- their new Christmas p.j.’s!

  37. Ashley Guth

    Our favorite tradition is going to breakfast with Santa! We love eating a delicious meal and getting to watch our kids sit on Santa’s lap all at the same time!

  38. Carolyn McCambridge

    Our favorite tradition is we pick a night to throw on jammies, make some hot chocolate, grab some cookies and pile in the car and go on our own little lights tour.

  39. Kim Romero

    We have an advent calendar every year, watch a Christmas movie every Friday night and drive around looking at Christmas lights. Grandma also takes all the grandkids to tea downtown at The Drake. We take th train and do a little shopping on Michigan Ave.

  40. Gina Jones

    Too many to list – decorating the tree, making xmas cookies, driving around to see lights, celebrating on xmas eve with clams, shrimp, crab and lobster!

  41. Becky Mancuso

    Pick out our tree on Black Friday, decorate with a fire in the fireplace and Christmas music on. We also always take hot chocolate in the car to go see the festival of lights at Philips Park. I love Christmas.

  42. Nicole tucker

    Every year we go to blackberry farm ride the train and see Santa. Love watching them grow with this tradition!!

  43. Michelle Lata

    Our favorite tradition is driving our in our PJs after dinner with a treat to view the Christmas lights at houses around town.

  44. Kathryne

    Hard to pick a favorite. Setting up the nativity scene with the kids each year and retelling them the story of Christmas is always so special. We also love going as a family to pick out th Christmas tree.

  45. Megan Farrell

    We just love to spend time together! We usually drive to our favorite neighborhood light displays.

  46. Becky Martinez

    Our favorite tradition is picking up hot chocolate and driving around looking at Christmas lights with Christmas Carols on the day radio. We also try to s e a show every year like The Christmas Carol or The Nutcracker.

  47. Shannon Prieur

    One of my family’s favorite holiday traditions is visiting the lights at Mooseheart. We get in our jammies, bring thermos’ of hot chocolate and drive slowly to enjoy the beautiful lights. Nothing says Christmas to our family than the holiday lights at Mooseheart!!

  48. Christy

    Our neighborhood started a tradition of gathering all the kids together for a gingerbread house decorating party and Christmas caroling. My daughter says this is her favorite tradition our family has. This year will be our third year and rumor has it the Big Guy himself will even be stopping by! 🙂

  49. Rebecca Hansma

    Just being together. Putting social media aside and we just enjoy cooking together, watching holiday movies, and if it is snowing on a winter night, we go for a late night walk through the neighborhood to enjoy the snow, Christmas lights in the neighborhood, and silence of the evening. We volunteer in the community through out the year, but the holidays are for family.

  50. Sarah Tracey

    Our favorite Christmas tradition is going to Christmas Eve service and coming home with Chinese takeout and watching Christmas movies until bedtime

  51. Brienne

    We read through a Christmas Haggadah (which means “the telling”) that is a a collection of scripture verses all telling about the birth of Jesus. Then we play the Hallelujah chorus Christmas morning before opening presents. My girls love it & are already talking about having worship time Christmas morning before gifts

  52. Lindsay olson

    Our favorite is doing the 12 days of Christmas to someone! Our kids love planning how they are going to escape and keeping it a secret from whoever we choose and love to hide in the bushes and watch their faces as they come out and see what we have left them every night!

  53. Jennnifer chintala

    I’m the youngest of 7. All of us always piled on to my parents bed to open stockings. Now I do the same with my kids but it’s a little less crowded with only 2 kids

  54. Crystal Dixon

    My little family started cutting down our own Christmas tree every year. My little guy is going to be 3 and got the biggest kick out of it last year. We can’t wait to go this year!

  55. Kelly Ross

    This is the best time of the year! Our family Christmas traditions include – The Geneva Christmas Walk, a Christkindl Market (or two), Making Christmas Cookies, and we’ve even been known to carole through the neighborhood Christmas Eve after church.

  56. Sandra S

    Hi Tara! My favorite holiday tradition was when we’d pull out the slide projector and look at all the old photos of our family and my parents sharing stories of their childhood Christmases.

  57. Kathy Johnson

    We love going to see Trans-Siberian Orchestra every year! Their shows always put us in the Christmas spirit. Decorating the Christmas tree and finding the pickle ornament is also a very special tradition in our house, along with leaving our shoes out for St Nicholas Day. Thanks for the giveaway!

  58. Becki

    We love to pack up the car with snacks and take a ride to see all the lights. We do this every weekend during December and hit a different neighborhood every week.

  59. Emily Weeks

    We have a fake Christmas tree, but each year we go to the real tree lot and find the shabbiest, saddest, loneliest tree to cut, take home, and decorate. It’s our Charlie Brown tree. 🙂

  60. Brittany

    Our Favorite Tradition is Going to the Boyscout Christmas Tree Fundraiser! They always have a great selection and we’re happy to support an organization that gets kids outside and into nature.

  61. Terra

    Every year I look forward to bringing home our Christmas tree, decorating the tree, having the fire lit, sipping hot cocoa and watching Christmas movie together with family.

  62. Rebecca Fick

    We go downtown to see the windows at Macy’s and to visit Santa. We also participate in a live nativity.

  63. Claudia Uysaloglu

    Our favorite holiday tradition is my father dressing up as Santa and giving our kids presents. They get so excited as he also reads stories to them and the night before they bake him cookies. We all sit around the fireplace and enjoy the stories and sweet treats.

  64. Meghan Sharkey

    Our favorite family tradition is watching movies on the couch under a blanket with no lights on but the Christmas Tree

  65. Tammy McPherson

    During December we bundle up and go see the zoo lights at Cosley as many times as we can. We love to drive to different communities and see lighting displays too. We are so excited for the holidays!

  66. Amy S

    Favorite family tradition – being together with family, fire in the fireplace, sitting around the Christmas tree…

  67. Vanessa Houdek

    As a mom to two toddlers I have tried hard to blend my family traditions with new ones to start with my own family. One great one that we really love is opening up a special present on Christmas Eve that is always pajamas to wear that night for Santa and a special holiday book to read together as we put out cookies for santa- this year will be the polar express! I would love to add an annual trip to the nutcracker to our traditions but with a family of four it does not quite fit into our holiday budget. Thank you for considering us!

  68. Tara Burghart Post author

    From Deidra (Tara grabbed from FB) Since adopting our daughter, everything about Christmas is truly magical. Every. Single. Thing. ❤️ And I’d have to say that sipping hot cocoa together is currently our favorite tradition. She’s three and thinks it’s the absolute best thing in the world! #blessed

  69. Tara Burghart Post author

    From Karen (Tara grabbed from FB) Our traditions have changed over the years…now Thanksgiving is a day to stay home in our PJs all day, and we eat Turkey on Sunday!

  70. Christin

    My family loves riding on the horse drawn carriage down 3rd street in Geneva. Afterwards we like to get chocolate fondue at Grahams 318.

  71. Donna Scheer

    Nobody cooks ahead of time. Instead we bring our ingredients and share that valuable time together in the kitchen Christmas morning making our brunch together.

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