With 10 days separating us from Christmas, next week is our last Hail Mary to get in gear, get ready and try and soak up what’s left of the holiday season before we find ourselves hand wringing over plans for the new year.

For me, there’s not much better than a big city at the peak of the holiday swing. Shopping, eating and exploring Chicago or New York around the holidays is intoxicating. There’s an energy in the air that makes things seem warmer and tinged with a little sprinkle of magic.

If you’re like me, you’re not going to make it to a really big city outside of Ohio to soak up the Christmas magic at this point, but there is a way to get a similar experience in a short drive.