CHICAGO — As the snow started to fall Thursday afternoon, spirits began to rise.

For the Grunow family, following a family tradition continues.

“It wasn’t snowing at all, but now, obviously, it’s coming down, and it’s a little hard to see, but it makes the season,” said Brooke Grunow.

“We come in from Lake Geneva every year at Christmastime and spend a couple of days down here for Christmas shopping,” added Scott Grunows.

They aren’t the only ones braving the dropping temperatures.

“Holy cow, it’s cold. We’re ready to get to the hotel,” the LeMasters family told WGN News. The group booked their tickets for ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ way before they knew the forecast. “We can’t get a refund, so here we are.”

But the LeMasters say they’re making the most of it with a trip to the Lego store. Making the most of it could also be said for a visiting couple, Gino Carnevale and Kathleen Freitas, who arrived from San Francisco. The Magnificent Mile is a festive layover, the couple says, en route to visiting Carnevale’s family in Indiana for Christmas. 

“We thought it would be nice to spend a couple of days here before,” Freitas said.

Carnevale, a native of Brazil, added, “[Kathleen] has never been to Chicago. She’s from Sao Paolo.”

The snow was an unexpected treat, however.

“It’s really fun but only for a couple of days,” Freitas said. “I would not live here at all.”