In the chaos of gift-buying, searching for the perfect party outfit, and organizing holiday travels, it’s easy to forget that some of the season’s most enjoyable events are free. In fact, there are so many free holiday events happening this month that it was impossible to fit them all into this list. Here’s a guide to just a few of the best free holiday events in Seattle and surrounding areas this December.
Festivals and Other Events
When: November 11th through December 24th
Where: Swansons Nursery, 9701 15th Ave NW, Seattle
What could be better than holiday shopping while strolling through fragrant pines and mingling with two real-life reindeer? This holiday festival includes a model train display, Christmas trees for sale, gifts and holiday decorations for sale, live music, and Santa Claus and holiday yurt photo ops.
When: November 21st, 2017 – January 1st, 2018
Where: City Centre, 1420 Fifth Ave, Seattle
The Sheraton’s Gingerbread Village has been a Seattle tradition for 25 years. Each year, architects from the city’s top firms, as well as master builders and the Sheraton’s culinary teams, design intricate and stunning gingerbread creations. The event is free and donations go to the JDRF Northwest Chapter.
When: November 24th – December 24th, every night at 7pm
Where: Sidewalks between Bellevue Square and Lincoln Square, NE 4th to NE 8th Streets, Bellevue
This parade includes falling snow, lights, holiday music, and appearances from Santa every night. Plan to arrive between 6 and 6:30pm to find the optimum parade-viewing spot.
Pioneer Square Holidays 2017
When: December 9th, 11am-3pm
Where: Occidental Square, Downtown Seattle
The only thing cuter than a dog in a holiday costume is hundreds of dogs in holiday costumes. Even if you don’t have a four-pawed loved one to bring, this event is open and free to the public. The day includes entertainment, treats, and a doggy costume contest at noon.
When: December 3rd, 11am-1pm
Where: Northgate Mall (Seattle) and Crossroads Mall (Bellevue)
This event is perfect for kids; activities include making edible dreidels and decorating Hanukkah placemats, taking photos, and competing for prizes.
Hanukkah Pajama Jam
When: December 16th, 5:30-7:30pm
Where: Stroum Jewish Community Center, 3801 East Mercer Way, Mercer Island
Wear your pajamas and bring an extra pair to donate while enjoying live music, arts and crafts, food trucks, Hanukkah storytime, and more.
Seattle Secular Solstice
When: December 16th, 4-9pm
Where: University Christian Church, 4731 15th Avenue Northeast, Seattle
Anyone is invited to attend this winter solstice celebration that offers food, song, light, community, and an informal reflection on the past year. The theme for this year’s celebration is empathy and evidence.
When: December 9th, 11am-5pm
Where: Various locations around Stadium High School, Tacoma
For those of us literary nerds, this festival celebrates the author of A Christmas Carol and transports attendees to an old-fashioned Victorian Christmas. The event includes actors dressed as Dickens characters, a Victorian costume contest for dogs, vendors, and carriage rides.
When: December 2nd, 4-8pm
Where: Redmond City Hall, 15670 NE 85th St, Redmond
Des Moines Tree Lighting
When: December 1st, 6-7:30pm
Where: Big Catch Plaza, corner of 216th and Marine View Drive, Des Moines
Santa Arrival and Tree Lighting
When: December 2nd, 10am-8pm
Where: 23718 Bothell Everett Hwy, Bothell
Mill Creek Tree Lighting
When: December 2nd, Santa parade at 3:30, tree lighting at 4pm
Where: Mill Creek City Hall South, 15728 Main Street, Mill Creek
Holiday on the Bay and Tree Lighting
When: December 2nd, 12-5pm
Where: Port of Everett North Marina & Waterfront Center, 1205 Craftsman Way, Everett
KNKX 88.5 FM presents Holiday Jam
When: December 4th, 7pm
Where: Edmonds Center for the Arts, 410 Fourth Ave. N., Edmonds
Celtic Christmas Concert
When: December 4th, 7pm
Where: St. Alban’s Episcopal Church, 21405 82nd Pl. W., Edmonds
Evergreen Community Orchestra Christmas Concert
When: December 11th, 2:30pm
Where: Northwest Music Hall in the Everett Mall
Mukilteo Community Orchestra Young Artist’s Concert
When: December 17th, 2pm
Where: Rosehill Community Center, 304 Lincoln Avenue, Mukilteo
We hope you enjoy these holiday events!
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