Updated for 2019-2020!
This list has all kinds of events, mostly one or two day happenings. If you’ve looking specifically for a Santa breakfast, a holiday show, a Nutcracker, or a tree farm, we have separate guides to those we’re updating now!
As always, while we strive for 100% accuracy, we’ve also provided links so you can double check event details before you head out!
Below, you’ll find tree lightings, Santa visits, Santa breakfasts, parades, ice skating, gingerbread house making, and more! Events are listed by geographical area and ordered by date.
Need help finding something or want to get your group’s event listed? Just let me know by emailing me at email@example.com
South King County
Dowtown Renton Saturday, November 30th
The Renton Downtown Partnership and Piazza Renton present downtown’s annual Small Business Saturday and Downtown Tree Lighting celebration, a full day of events designed to support small, locally owned businesses and usher in the holiday season.
- 5 – 7 p.m. Music, holiday treats, and activities for children in Renton Pavilion Event Center.
- 5 p.m. Tree lighting and arrival of Santa Claus at Piazza Park.
Late Play Date With Santa at the White River Valley Museum In Auburn December 5th Be sure to also check out the temporary Festival of Trees exhibit-new this year!
Clam Lights is a stunning visual display of trees and shrubs professionally decorated with over 200,000 lights. It follows more than a mile of the park’s flat water walk and is free.
Opening night is Friday, Dec. 6, at 5:30 p.m. Along with the lights there will be a photo opportunity with Santa and Mrs. Claus and several other activities. The Clam Lights will be on daily from 5 to 9 p.m. through January 1, 2020.
Winterfest in Normandy Park December 7th
Destination Des Moines Holiday Tree Lighting First Friday of December every year
Kent – Saturday, December 7th
Come to Town Square Plaza to enjoy performances from local choirs and bands, a raffle, and holiday children’s activities at the Kent Library. At 5pm, join us for a visit from Santa and the Tree and Park Lighting Ceremony. Free hot apple cider, hot chocolate and popcorn!
10–11:30am at the Federal Way Community Center.
Pre-Registration $15 adults, $12 kids
Breakfast with Santa for ages 2–12 yrs.
Food, hot cocoa station, music, crafts & fun!
Federal Way Saturday, December 7th Tree Lighting at Town Square Park with Music and Santa 4–5pm at Town Square Park. Free
Santa, activities, music, tree lighting by Mayor.
Auburn Santa Parade and Tree Lighting – Saturday, December 7th
We are shaking things up downtown Auburn this winter with an improved lighted Santa Parade! A festive and fun parade that will now allow floats, tractors, horses, walking entries, and other motorized units that will light up Main Street! The parade will be followed by the lighting of the tree in front of City Hall with a visit from Santa
Auburn Santa Breakfast – December 14th Two separate seating’s: 8:30 AM and 11:00 AMA chance for your little one to tell Santa exactly what’s on his/her list! You’ll enjoy a yummy pancake breakfast and great entertainment.Preregistration required. Space is limited.Fee:
Adults: $8 (Auburn resident)/$10 (non-resident)
Child: $7 (Auburn resident)/$9 (non-residentTickets by calling:
Auburn Parks, Arts and Recreation
Tacoma and Greater Pierce County
Saturday, November 30, 2019
Live Music & Santa Photos 4:30 p.m.
+ Tree Lighting at 6:15 p.m.
Since World War II, the south Sound community has gathered to celebrate at the corner of 9th & Broadway in downtown Tacoma. Gather for carols and photos with Santa. Make it part of your holiday tradition!
Puyallup, A Simple Wish – November 29th and 30th 25.00 per person Tree lighting with costumed princesses There is also a gingerbread house event with Santa and a party with Belle on separate dates that you may be interested in. These are all ticketed events and require registration.
Reindeer at Watson’s Nursery, Puyallup – Ongoing! Donner and Blitzen are spending their holiday vacation at Watson’s ’til December 24th!
Fridays with Santa December 6th and December 13th – 11:30am – 3:30pm
Santa will be making his visits to Watson’s in December. Santa will be available for pictures on a first come first serve basis. Watson’s does not provide photos, but you are more than welcome to take your own.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Santa will be at The Old Cannery Furniture Warehouse for complimentary photos with your families! The Bridge Lighting is also back!
Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shop Tacoma – Gather the family and come to experience the joy of a classic Christmas. Stay for FREE games, crafts and activities that celebrate the season. And, don’t miss the FREE photo with Santa!!! Ongoing-see link for schedule Free-unless you buy something 🙂
Zoolights, Tacoma – NOVEMBER 29, 2019 – JANUARY 5, 2020
North Pole at the Fair, Puyallup – Reserve a photo time with Santa and enjoy a full afternoon at the North Pole, with an entire village just for kids. You can also buy tickets just to play at the Pole if you don’t need or want a photo. Update: Photo times are all sold out.
CHI Frozen Fountain – Ice Skating at Point Ruston
Presenting the CHI Frozen Fountain Ice Skating Rink at Point Ruston!
Frozen Fun On the Waterfront
NOVEMBER 14TH, 2019 THROUGH JANUARY 5TH, 2020
We are excited to announce the Frozen Fountain will be back again for another season of holiday themed ice skating at Point Ruston!
This year’s rink is going to be even more exciting with a full month longer of skating this season.
The rink is open to the public every day from November 14th, 2019 through January 5th, 2020.
Santa trades in his sleigh for a fire truck! Come celebrate the season with the Mayor and Santa as they use some holiday magic to light up the trees outside of City hall.
- Free photos with Santa, cookies and cocoa
- Date: Tuesday, December 3
- Time: 6 to 7 p.m.
- Cost: FREE
- Location: Fife City Hall
Victorian Country Christmas, Puyallup Fairgrounds December 4th-8th Holiday fun for all ages! Over 500 stores, dining, concerts, stage shows, Santa and much more!
University Place Tree Lighting – Friday, December 6th
Invite your family and neighbors to come out for a very special evening and community event on Friday, Dec. 6 from 4 to 7:30 p.m. in Market Square for the lighting of the University Place Christmas Tree. This continues our tradition in U.P., with the annual Christmas tree lighting festivities beginning after dark amid the holiday lights of Market Square. Fun starts in the day with performances and activities. Also includes Santa pics for 5.00 and more fun.
Lakewood – Saturday, December 7
Santa visit, kids’ activities, parade and more fun all day with the tree lighting in the evening
Bring your family and friends for a stroll through the glittering display of trees. Festival is open to the public during select hours on Friday, December 6 and Saturday, December 7. Enjoy live community entertainment, games, photos with Santa and shopping at the Mary Bridge Brigade Gift Shop. Friday, December 6 and Saturday, December 7, 2019 (9:00am-1:00pm) Greater Tacoma Convention Center Adults: $6, Children 5-12: $2, Children under 5: FREE For FREE admission, bring a non-perishable food item with you. Preferably individually-wrapped, grab-and-go snacks or boxed items such as fruit roll-ups, granola bars, etc. Donations will benefit families staying at Tree House while their child receives care at Mary Bridge.
Take a break from the hustle and bustle of modern holidays and experience a real old-fashioned Christmas at Fort Nisqually Living History Museum. A highlight of the event is the arrival of the yule log, towed in by young visitors at 1 pm. Everyone can join in greeting the yule log with toasts and Christmas Carols. Guests will have a chance to take home a piece of the log for their own holiday fire. Throughout the day, guests of all ages can join in parlor games, make ornaments, and create pomanders. Father Christmas will be available for visits and photos. December 7th PURCHASE TICKETS
Tree Lighting in Milton– Saturday, December 7th Details still TBA; has traditionally included Santa and some crafts and fun for kids
Santa Visits the Conservatory in Wright Park Saturday, December 7th
Join us for this much anticipated visit from Santa. Memorialize the holidays in the beauty of the Conservatory with a professional photograph with Santa (separate fee for photos).
Santa’s helpers will be here offering cookies, crafts and jolly good times. 10am-3pm
Puyallup Main Street – Saturday, December 7, 2019
I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas!
The Puyallup Santa Parade is one of the highlights of the holiday season in Downtown Puyallup. Over 100 parade entries light up Meridian on one magical evening. Thousands of families line Meridian to marvel at the sight of holiday floats, marching bands, antique tractors while they await the arrival of Jolly Old Saint Nick himself as he arrives on a Central Pierce Firetruck. Holiday Market in the pavilion before and tree lighting in the park at the end of the parade.
December 7, 14 & 21 | 3 – 6pm Santa, wagon rides, petting zoo, living nativity plus magical mini donkeys and airbrush artists on the 7th, Mrs. Claus, a stilt walker, and other guests on the 14th, and magical mini donkeys back on the 21st.
Santa and Mrs. Claus invite you to breakfast. Kids will create a holiday craft and share their Christmas wishlist with Santa. Children must attend with a parent or responsible adult. Bring your camera for a picture with Santa. Breakfast will be served from 9:15 to 10:15 a.m. Saturday, December 7th, but you must preregister by December 2nd
Light Plantasia, presented by Lusio
Dec 10-15, 2019
Take a stroll through the wonderland that is Light Plantasia!
This is not your regular holiday light show. For five nights you can enjoy the botanical gardens inside the W.W. Seymour Botanical Conservatory illuminated for a stunning and unique holiday excursion. Ticketed event
Christmas at Fort Steilacoom December 14
Celebrate the Christmas season as living historians in period clothing present a period candle light Christmas. The gift shop will be open for holiday shopping. Tickets to the event will be available for purchase in the Interpretive Center/Quarters 4. The event runs from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Old Town Tacoma – Saturday, December 14, Santa visits the Job Carr Cabin Museum. Join us on Saturday, December 14, 2019 to celebrate the season at Tacoma’s birthplace! Santa photos, crafts, choirs, and treats Free event
Frolic and folly at our annual Victorian Holiday Festival honoring Tacoma’s historic Victorian-styled Conservatory. Staff and volunteers will be dressed in beautiful costumes. Enjoy live music, crafts and delightful refreshments. December 14, 2019 10 am-3 pm
From 12-4 pm the Dickens Festival at Stadium Business District will feature horse drawn carriage rides from Rankos Pharmacy to the Conservatory. $3 suggested donation
Santa is driving in to ACM this holiday season to upgrade his ride! Join Santa and Mrs. Claus for a photo op in a 1906 Cadillac Model K Tulip Touring Car. Kids receive a free slot car voucher for the ACM Speed Zone! Santa photos are FREE for ACM Members or included with ACM admission as a digital download. 14, 15, 20, and 21 select hours
Breakfast with Santa and the Grinch Saturday, December 14 9 am-12:30 pm
It’s that time of the year again! Come to Who-Ville to feast with Jolly St. Nick and grumpy Grinch. Enjoy a meal of Who-pudding, Roast Beast sausage, Who-hash, green Grinch-cakes, and green eggs, too!
Admission includes a family picture with Santa, holiday face painting, holiday music, holiday craft projects, and a snowball fight. Register for one of four seating times
Breakfast with Santa Saturday, December 14 9:00 am-12 pm
Rise and shine for Breakfast with Santa at The Center at Norpoint on Dec. 14. Enjoy a delicious pancake breakfast, holiday arts and crafts, pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus, and more!
The 3rd Annual Breakfast with Santa will host two sessions of fun at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Tickets are on advanced sale for $10, or at the door for $15. Space is limited. Sign up in advance to guarantee your spot.
Cookies for Santa at the People’s Center Saturday, December 14 11 am-1 pm
People’s Community Center and pool is hosting its first annual cookies for Santa! Bring the entire family to decorate cookies, send a letter to Santa, enjoy holiday music and take pictures with Santa in the pool. Event is open 11:30 am- 1:00 pm and participants can choose from one of 3 activities times. Space is limited!
$6 for non-members and $4 for members; register in advance
Cocoa & Carols is an evening festive community sing along, featuring many of your favorite holiday carols and delicious cocoa. Bring your friends, family and favorite holiday song to Cocoa & Carols and warm your hearts with joyous singing.
Friday, December 20 from 6-7:30 pm at W.W. Seymour Botanical Conservatory (316 South G Street in historic Wright Park).
$3 Suggested Donation
Elves and Bells Around Town, Steilacoom – December 20th
Santa’s only stop of the evening at Saltar’s Point Elementary. Come meet Santa, Mrs. Claus, Frosty the Snowman, Elves and Reindeer. You can have your picture taken with Santa, there will be toys for the little ones and candy canes for all!
various days/times Great free, event! Some locations require tickets or registration, so check yours.
Gingerbread Houses at Steilacoom Wednesday, December 11: 3:00pm – 5:00pm
Creative Crafts for Teens – Gingerbread Houses at Gig Harbor Wednesday, December 11: 7:00pm – 8:00pm
- Gingerbread Houses at Fife Saturday, December 14: 12:00pm – 1:00pm.
Gingerbread Houses at Tillicum Saturday, December 14: 12:00pm – 1:00pm
at Fife Saturday, December 14: 2:00pm – 3:00pm
at Sumner Saturday, December 21: 10:30am – 12:30pm
Puppets Please Holiday Show – Various Pierce County Library locations, December 14-23rd These colorful marionettes will be touring throughout the Pierce County Library System to bring you a holiday themed in the round show for all ages! All ages, drop in event. Readers have enjoyed this in the past!
Jingle Bell Run – Tacoma December 24, two morning start times A refreshing, family friendly 3 mile run or walk through Wright Park.
Winter wildland wonderland
Breathe in the crisp mountain air and watch in delight as our animals play with holiday-themed treats and enrichments. Here’s the schedule:
Sat. Dec. 28
1pm Grizzly bears
Sun. Dec. 29
11:30am Snowy owls
2:30pm Gray wolves
First Night in Tacoma – December 31. A family-friendly, arts-centered, alcohol free celebration of New Year’s Eve that takes place throughout the Downtown Tacoma theater district. Purchase buttons for admission to activities. More here
Polar Bear Plunge -TBA; traditionally New Year’s Day
Gig Harbor/Port Orchard/Kitsap Area
Gig Harbor Annual Holiday Tree Lighting
December 7th 2019 | 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm
Location: Skansie Brothers Park, 3207 Harborview Drive, Gig Harbor | Cost: FREE
Join us for the official kick off of the holiday season — visit with Santa, hear some lively holiday tunes, and explore a fire truck! Make your way to the historic Skansie Netshed to grab free hot cocoa, cider and/or cookies courtesy of Gig Harbor Downtown Waterfront Alliance and then help us count down as we turn on the tree lights at Skansie Brothers Park.
Stop by the museum on Saturday, December 7th between 1:00 and 4:00pm to visit with Santa! There will also be fun projects for the children! Free and open to the public.
Celebrate the holiday season by visiting with Santa Claus! Enjoy pictures (includes printed photo), live reindeer, holiday themed activities, and music. Plus, write a letter to Santa and get one back before Christmas.
The Gig Harbor Kiwanis will be providing a Pancake Breakfast that will also include ham, fruit, coffee, and juice. Children must be accompanied by paid adult. Children under 2 are free! Pre-registration is required.8.00
Fox Island Tree Lighting – Sunday, December 1st Use link to navigate to the date on the calendar.
TideFest – Gig Harbor High School; Saturday/Sunday, December 7-8. Fine arts and gifts festival.
Pictures with Santa at the Log Cabin Museum – Port Orchard; Join us again this year for Pictures with Santa at the Log Cabin Museum. Bring your camera, kids, pets, family and friends. We provide Santa in front of a Christmas tree in the historic log cabin with candy canes and a cozy fire. Free event. Dress warm. Santa comes rain or shine.. December 7/8 and 13/14
Letters to Santa – Key Center Fire Department; Sunday, December 1 Letters to Santa is hosted by Key Pen Parks and the Key Center Fire Department. It is held at the Key Center Fire Station, 8911 Key Peninsula Highway KP N, Lakebay, WA 98349. Kids may come and decorate a cookie and write their letters to Santa! This is a great place to come before heading over to the KC Corral for the Christmas tree lighting ceremony. This is a FREE event.
Celebrate Gig Harbor’s Scandinavian heritage at Harbor History Museum’s 6th Annual Light Up the Night: St. Lucia Festival on Friday, December 13th from 5:30-7:30 pm. Crafts, games, and traditional Scandinavian snacks are the star at this family-friendly event. $3 admission for all ages. Harbor History Museum members and their families get in FREE.
Tickets can be purchased online at the Harbor History Museum’s Buy Tickets page or at the front desk. For more information contact Robin Harrison, Operations and Marketing Manager at 253.858.6722 ext. 5 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lighted Boat Parade – Gig Harbor
This year, 2019. the Gig Harbor Lighted Boat Parade is on Saturday, December 14th, 2019, beginning at 5:00 PM, and all area boaters are invited to participate and light up the harbor! Last year we had 35 boats beautifully lit, and the line of lighted boats made an amazing spectacle, stretching all around the harbor.
The parade is sponsored by the Gig Harbor Yacht Club, but you do not have to be member to join the parade – you simply need to bring a well-lit boat and a sense of adventure. Everyone is invited, from big fishing boats to gutsy kayakers.
Menorah Lighting at Uptown TBA
NOTICE >> Due to a construction project, Discovery Baptist will not be having a 2019 Living Nativity.
Oly Lightstravaganza is free and open to all. The lights will be on 4:45 – 10:30 pm, December 1, 2019 through the New Year.
Visitors are encouraged to bring donations for the Thurston County Food Bank (cash, check to TCFB, or non-perishable food
Downtown for the Holidays Olympia Santa, a parade, a tree lighting, and much more! Always the Sunday after Thanksgiving
Olympia downtown will kick off the holiday season in style on Sunday, December 1 with the Jingle Bell Parade, a visit from Santa & Mrs. Claus, and horsedrawn wagon rides! This endearing community tradition is made possible through the support of downtown businesses, sponsors, membership dues and volunteers. Enjoy Olympia at its seasonal best!
Providence Christmas Forest – Olympia Providence Christmas Forest
Saturday, December 7 from 9am-5pm
Sunday, December 8 from 9am-5pm
Santa Breakfast DupontSaturday, December 7th 15.00
Dupont Tree Lighting December 1st, 5 pm at Ross Plaza
December 7th 2-4
- Lacey Parade of Lights & Christmas Trees Lighting
Monday, December 2, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.
Huntamer Park in Woodland Square more »
- Signing Santa Friday, December 6, 6:30 p.m.
Chambers Prairie Elementary more »
- Breakfast with Santa
Saturday, December 14, 9:00 – 10:30 a.m. Lacey Community Center more »
13th Annual Christmas Tree Lighting, Tumwater – Saturday, December 8
The Tumwater Christmas Tree Lighting Festival is held each year on the 2nd Saturday in December, from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m., at the Tumwater City Hall & Headquarters Fire Station.
This popular holiday event includes games, holiday crafts, performances by local and school choirs, and of course, the lighting of the tree. Santa will arrive on an antique fire truck after the ceremonial tree lighting to share his joyful laugh and spread some holiday cheer. Join us at this special event; you are sure to have a festive time!
TBA Santa Arrives by helicopter at the Olympic Flight Museum
Here, There and Everywhere
Argosy Christmas Ships – throughout the South Sound all season Lighted ships with choirs visit waterfront communities around the Puget Sound. You can book a (pricey) ride aboard the ship or attend a free event in conjunction with one of their stops. View the complete schedule here. If you scroll down the schedule, you can find South Sound stops and decide if you want to catch them when they stop or book a ride
And….If you liked this list, you’ll also enjoy our other holiday guides, too! Be sure to check back as we’re updating all of them now!
As always, let me know if I’ve missed something great! I’d love to add it. Email me at email@example.com