Best bets: A week of ogres, Nutcrackers and Regis
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If you missed seeing your favorite animated green ogre singing and dancing in Chicago last year, then head out to Rosemont this weekend for a return engagement of the big DreamWorks family show "Shrek the Musical" at the Rosemont Theatre, 5400 N. River Road, Rosemont. $22.50-$87.50. (800) 745-3000 or rosemonttheatre.com. 2 and 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 25; 10 a.m., 3 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 26; 1 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 27
Marvel at amazing miniature trains and models of Chicago-area landmarks at the Wonderland Express, opening today at the Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe. $10; $8 kids. $20 parking per vehicle. (847) 835-5440 or chicagobotanic.org. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 25, through Sunday, Jan. 1 (closes 3 p.m. Dec. 1 and 24; and closed completely Sunday, Dec. 25)
If you've been suffering basketball withdrawal from the breakdown in negotiations by NBA owners and players, then don't miss The Sixth Annual Chicago Invitational Challenge. College teams like University of Wisconsin, Bradley University and more play this weekend at the Sears Centre Arena, 5333 Prairie Stone Parkway, Hoffman Estates. $32-$52. $12 kids. $62-$92 adult tournament; $22 youth tournament. (888) 732-7784 or searscentre.com. Noon Friday, Nov. 25; 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 26
Nutcracker of the week
Salt Creek Ballet kicks off the holiday season with a touring revival of Tchaikovsky's classic Christmas-time ballet "The Nutcracker." Salt Creek's production featuring a cast of more that 120 performers starts this weekend at Hinsdale Central Auditorium, 5500 S. Grant St., Hinsdale. $15-$31. (630) 769-1199 or saltcreekballet.org. 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 26 and 27, in Hinsdale; Also Saturday, Dec. 3 in Aurora; Saturday, Dec. 10, in University Park; Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 17 and 18, in Skokie
What goes up ...
The Flying Karamazov Brothers tour back to town with their hit juggling and comedy show "4-Play" this Saturday at the Paramount Theatre, 8 E. Galena Blvd., Aurora. $28.50-$38.50. (630) 896-6666 or paramountaurora.com. 4 and 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 26
A world of dance
The Chicago Human Rhythm Project's "Global Rhythms" offers audiences a chance to experience world dance from troupes like The Mexican Folkloric Dance Company of Chicago, Ensemble Espanol Spanish Dance Theater and Step Afrika! this weekend at Millennium Park's Harris Theater for Music and Dance, 205 E. Randolph Drive, Chicago. $15-$55. (312) 334-7777 or harristheaterchicago.org. 8 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 26; 7 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 27
Start indulging in holiday music when conductor Keith Lockhart brings the Boston Esplanade Orchestra with vocal group Rockapella for a 2011 Holiday Pops Tour concert on Wednesday at the Auditorium Theatre at Roosevelt University, 50 E. Congress Parkway, Chicago. $32-$127. (800) 982-2787 or auditoriumtheatre.org. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 30
Famed for being pushed around by Tony Soprano as "George, the bartender" on HBO's "The Sopranos," actor/comedian Frank Santorelli takes charge with a standup routine starting Wednesday at Zanies at Pheasant Run Resort, 4051 E. Main St., St. Charles. $25 plus a two menu-item purchase. (630) 584-6342 or zanies.com. 8 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, Nov. 30 and Dec. 1; 8 and 9:45 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2; 7:30 and 9:45 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3
Anderson's Bookshops presents retiring TV celebrity Regis Philbin ("Who Wants to be a Millionaire," "Live! With Regis and Kelly") for an appearance and book signing for his latest memoir, "How I Got This Way," this Thursday at North Central College's Wentz Concert Hall, 171 E. Chicago Ave., Naperville. $25.99 with a copy of Philbin's latest book "How I Got This Way." (630) 355-2665 or andersonsbookshop.com. 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 1
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