Seattle events December 2020. Things to do in Seattle.

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Best events for 12 months

Seattle events December 2020

Christmas tree festival

December 1 - 2, 2020
(begins Nov. 21)
0.5 mile south
View 20 designer trees in the lobby and driveway of the Fairmont Olympic Hotel during the annual free Festival of Trees Display. Also see the schedule for the ticketed gala, free family celebration, and free teddy bear suite & gingerbread house.

Reindeer & Santa

December 1 - 23, 2020
14 miles east
Visit Cougar Mountain Zoo when it’s decorated like the North Pole to welcome Santa with his reindeer and sleigh during the Issaquah Reindeer Festival [sound].

Reindeer & model train

December 1 - 24, 2020
(begins Nov. 14)
7 miles NW
Visit live reindeer and watch a model train circle a winter landscape during the Reindeer Festival at Swansons Nursery. See the web page for other scheduled activities. Free.

Bellevue street show

December 1 - 24, 2020
(begins Nov. 27)
10 miles east
Enjoy a 20-minute show of lights, music, falling snow, young dancers, and drummers in uniform on Snowflake Lane (Bellevue Way between N.E. 4th & N.E. 8th). Arrive early for the best view. Free.

Nutcracker ballet

December 1 - 27, 2020
(begins Nov. 27)
1 mile NW
Pacific Northwest Ballet performs The Nutcracker by George Balanchine, with a live orchestra, magnificent sets and costumes, and a huge cast in McCaw Hall.

Christmas lights - Bellevue

December 1 - 31, 2020
(begins Nov. 28)
11 miles east
Enjoy zillions of colorful lights and displays at Garden d’Lights in Bellevue Botanical Garden from 4:30 to 9 p.m. every night. Children age 10 and younger free.

Christmas lights - Seattle zoo

Dec. 1, 2020 - Jan. 3, 2021
(Nov. 27+)
5 miles north
WildLights has 800,000 lights in animal shapes, plus animal encounters, fire pits, snowball fights, a lighted carousel, hot chocolate, and adult beverages at Woodland Park Zoo from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Closed Dec. 24 & 25. Free parking.

Christmas lights - Tacoma zoo

Dec. 1, 2020 - Jan. 3, 2021
(Nov. 27+)
40 miles south
Bundle up to admire 700,000 holiday lights and displays, plus the South Pacific Aquarium at Zoolights in Tacoma’s Point Defiance Zoo from 5 to 9 p.m. Closed Dec. 24.

Victorian Christmas market

December 2 - 6, 2020
36 miles south
A Victorian Country Christmas has 500 booths with vendors in Victorian costumes selling art, jewelry, decorations, clothing, and toys at the Washington State Fair Events Center in Puyallup. Free parking.

Caroling at Westlake

December 4, 2020
0 miles
Hear dozens of caroling teams sing outside Westlake Center, and then vote for your favorite at Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition, or register a team.

Christmas tree lighting

December 4 - 5, 2020
(begins Nov. 27)
multiple locations
See a free tree-lighting ceremony, usually with music.

Bavarian Christmas

December 4 - 20, 2020
117 miles east
Enjoy Christmas lights twinkling on snow, roasted chestnuts, sleigh rides, and caroling at the annual Christmas Lighting Festival. See the lights on Fri., Sat., Sun. Lighting ceremony is 4:30 p.m. Sat. & Sun.

Drawing day

December 5, 2020
2 miles NE
Get creative with drawing materials, open studios, live models, live music, and food trucks at family-friendly Drawing Jam at Gage Academy of Art.

Holiday night in Redmond

December 5, 2020
15 miles NE
Redmond Lights at city hall has an afternoon holiday market, a tree lighting at 5 p.m., and fireworks at 6 p.m. Any time after 5 p.m., follow the trail of lanterns from city hall past choirs and performers to Redmond Town Center for entertainment until 8 p.m. The trail is also lit Sunday evening. Free.

Wine tasting in Issaquah

December 5, 2020
16.4 miles east
Bring your own glass to Issaquah Holiday Fest, which offers “an array of wines, beers, ciders and spirits to taste along with warm spiced wines” plus DJ music, Christmas karaoke, and wandering Santas in the shops at Gilman Village.

Scandinavian Christmas

December 5, 2020
22 miles NW via Bainbridge ferry
Jule Fest has a Scandinavian bazaar of arts and crafts, folk dancing, Vikings, a Christmas tree lighting, Lucia bride, bonfire, and Santa Claus in Poulsbo. Free.

Craft show

December 5 - 6, 2020
(preview Dec. 4)
1 mile NW
Shop for hand-crafted clothing, jewelry, toys, stationery, art, candles, housewares, and food at Urban Craft Uprising Winter Show in the Exhibition Hall at Seattle Center. Repeats in July.

Phinney winter festival

December 5 - 6, 2020
5 miles north
The Winter Festival & Crafts Fair has 120 arts and crafts vendors, musicians and dancers, and lunch and baked goods at Phinney Center. Children age 12 and younger are free.

Nutcracker Ballet - north end

December 5 - 6 and 12 - 13, 2020
16 miles NE
Emerald Ballet Theatre performs The Nutcracker with new sets and a live orchestra in Bothell at Northshore Performing Arts Center on Saturdays and Sundays.

Santa Train

December 5 - 19, 2020
(weekends from Nov. 28)
36 miles east
The Northwest Railway Museum runs a popular 20-minute Santa Train from North Bend to the Snoqualmie Depot for cookies and a visit with Santa.

Holiday sax concert

December 6, 2020
(8 to 10 p.m.)
0.4 miles SW
Saxophonist Chris Mitchell plays yuletide classics, including his passionate take on “Let it Snow” at the Four Seasons Hotel.

Discount tickets $35

Tibet marketplace

December 6, 2020
(11 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
6.3 miles north
The Holiday Sale of Handicrafts and Baked Treats features Himalayan crafts (statues, prayer flags, incense, art prints, books, music, prayer beads, jewelry, calendars, clothing), Tibetan tea, and a noon tour of Sakya Monastery in Greenwood. Free.

Christmas music in a cathedral

December 11, 2020
(7:30 p.m.)
0.8 miles SE
A Service of Readings and Carols features adult and youth choirs, organ and brass instruments, readings from the Bible, and the congregation singing Silent Night by candlelight at St. James Cathedral. Free parking. Donation.

Short Nutcracker

December 11 - 19, 2020
Ballard and Shoreline
Nutcracker Sweets is a one-hour version of the classic ballet featuring ”beautiful music, gorgeous costumes, and exciting dancing” by students and professionals in Ballard (Dec. 11 to 13) and Shoreline (Dec. 19).

Green Lake lights

December 12, 2020
4.5 miles north
Take a walk following glowing luminaries on the Green Lake Pathway of Lights, which includes live music at four locations, rain or snow or stars. Free.

Charles Dickens festival

December 12, 2020
35 miles south
Dickens Festival at Stadium has characters in Victorian costumes, puppet shows, dressed up dogs, music, drums, and dancers in Tacoma’s Stadium District. Also visit Victorian Holiday Festival at the botanical conservatory via horse carriage rides.

Craft fair

December 12 - 13, 2020
8 miles NE
Renegade Craft Fair offers indie crafts, food trucks, and DJ music at Hangar 30 in Magnuson Park. Repeats in July. Free.

Jingle Bell run - Seattle

December 13, 2020
0 miles
Wear a costume or tie on bells for the morning Jingle Bell Run 12K, 5K, 1 mile, or 1K kids’ run at Westlake Center. Walkers and dogs are welcome.

Norwegian family party

December 13, 2020
5.6 miles NW
“Prepare for a fun afternoon of eating, singing, and dancing around the Christmas tree, Norwegian style” during the Children’s Christmas Party at Leif Erikson Hall in Ballard for $8 (child $1).

Indoor festival

December 18 - 19, 2020
7.3 miles NE
Family-friendly Winter Solstice Night Market has street food, art vendors, and live music at Hangar 30 in Magnuson Park. An optional ticket to its Winter Solstice Beer Fest includes eight tasting tokens (4 ounces each) so you can sample from 30 breweries.

Native craft fair

December 18 - 20, 2020
4.9 miles SW
Shop for fine art, native crafts, cards, jewelry, and smoked salmon at the Native Holiday Gift Fair at the Duwamish Longhouse in West Seattle in Nov. & Dec.

Party cruise

December 19, 2020
2.1 miles north
Xmas Booze Cruise includes three hours of views, DJ dance music, Santa, and a pricey bar aboard The Islander, which departs from Lake Union Charters for age 21+.

Appalachian Christmas in Everett

December 19, 2020
4 miles NE
An Appalachian Christmas features violinist and composer Mark O’Connor and his family playing Appalachian music in Meany Hall at the University of Washington.

Holiday run

December 19, 2020
7.3 miles NE
You’re welcome to dress for the holidays when you join the Holiday Fun Run (5K, 10K, 15K), followed by hot chocolate and cider at Magnuson Park.

Nutcracker in Renton

December 19 - 20, 2020
16 miles SE
The Nutcracker by Cornerstone Studio has a cast of 70 youthful and exuberant dancers at Carco Theatre.

Christmas show in Tacoma

December 19 - 23, 2020
34 miles south
The Christmas Revels is a family-oriented celebration of the winter solstice. Expect music, dance, theater, song, and storytelling at Rialto Theater in Tacoma.

Jingle Bell Run - Tacoma

December 24, 2020
36 miles south
Run or walk 3 miles at the Jingle Bell Run at Wright Park in Tacoma. Costumes are welcome.

Movie: Fiddler on the Roof

December 25, 2020
1.6 miles NW
See a film about Jewish tradition, eat Chinese food, and hear Klezmer music at Fiddler on the Roof Sing Along, an annual tradition at SIFF Cinema Uptown.

Jazz show

December 26, 2020
0.4 miles SE
Sacred Music by Duke Ellington features the Seattle Repertory Jazz Orchestra, plus guest vocalists, a gospel choir, and tap dancers at Town Hall Seattle.

Bollywood early New Year

December 30, 2020
5.1 miles NW
Dance into the new year a day early at Masquerade Pre-NYE Party, which has DJ dance music from India, dance performers, and a 10 p.m. dance lesson at the Nectar Lounge for age 21+.

New Year’s fireworks

December 31, 2020
1 mile NW
Wear a winter coat and join 20,000 people gathered below The Space Needle to watch a free fireworks show at midnight. The $275 T-Mobile New Year’s at the Needle party upstairs usually sells out early.

New Year’s Eve restaurants

December 31, 2020
Seattle locations
OpenTable lists restaurants that offer special menus and celebrations on New Year’s Eve.

New Year’s ball

December 31, 2020
0.4 miles SE
Dress formally in black, white, or both to attend the Black & White Ball, which offers two dance floors, two bands, a dessert bar, hats & noisemakers, and a champagne toast at midnight at Women’s University Club for age 21+. A dinner at 6 p.m. is optional.

New Year’s Eve - Benaroya Hall

December 31, 2020
0.5 mile south
New Year’s Eve: Pandemonium features the Seattle Symphony performing with diva Meow Meow, followed by a party with dancing until midnight, a countdown, and a champagne toast at Benaroya Hall.

New Year’s Eve - Columbia Center

December 31, 2020
0.6 miles SE
Watch the Space Needle’s fireworks at midnight from indoors atop the city’s tallest building at New Year’s Eve at Sky View Observatory, with live music, light hors d’oeuvres, and an open bar for age 21+.

New Year’s cruise

December 31, 2020
0.7 miles SW
The NYE Jazz Cruise includes a jazz quartet, a champagne toast at midnight, views of the Space Needle fireworks, and a no-host bar departing from Argosy Cruises at Pier 55 for age 21+.

New Year’s atop the Smith Tower

December 31, 2020
0.8 miles south
“Come dressed to impress in flapper fashion for an extravagant affair” on the top floor observatory of the Smith Tower at Roaring ‘20s, which includes a dinner buffet, two cocktails, champagne, and a DJ for $250+.

New Year’s Eve in a cathedral

December 31, 2020
0.8 miles SE
Hear Early Music Seattle and Seattle Baroque Orchestra play music from baroque France at New Year’s Eve Gala: Charpentier at St. James Cathedral, with a midnight “surprise” and tolling bells. Donation.

Giant New Year’s party

December 31, 2020
1 mile NW
Indulgence is billed as Seattle’s biggest New Year’s Eve bash, with 2,000 guests, comedy, live dance music, dancers, and access to most exhibits in the Museum of Pop Culture at Seattle Center for age 21+.

Japanese New Year’s party

December 31, 2020
1 miles north
A $184 ticket to One Night in Osaka includes 4 drink tickets, 6 food tickets (made by chefs from five Seattle Japanese restaurants), entertainment, and DJ dance music at 415 Westlake Avenue N. for age 21+. Dress in black and gold.

New Year’s Eve at Chihuly

December 31, 2020
1 mile NW
The $250 New Year’s Eve pARTy includes appetizers & dessert, two drink tickets, live music and dancing, a tour of the exhibits, and a champagne toast with a view of the Space Needle’s fireworks through the Glasshouse ceiling at Chihuly Garden and Glass at Seattle Center for age 21+.

New Year’s Eve science party

December 31, 2020
1 mile NW
Spectra: New Year’s Eve Under the Arches has laser shows, science exhibits and live demos, games, dancing to DJ music, a champagne toast, a cash bar, food for sale, and a view of the Space Needle fireworks at midnight at Pacific Science Center for age 21+.

Early New Year’s dance party

December 31, 2020
1.5 miles south
Wear white and gold to Resolution, a massive concert with 13 DJs playing dance music on two stages at WaMu Theater for age 18+ (bars will serve age 21+).

New Year’s Eve movie

December 31, 2020
1.6 miles NW
Watch the glamorous film with Ewan McGregor and Nicole Kidman at Moulin Rouge! New Year’s Eve Party Sing Along, including a sing along and a free beverage at SIFF Cinema Uptown.

New Year’s Eve Bollywood style

December 31, 2020
4.8 miles south
Bollywood NYE promises “two DJs playing Seattle’s best Bollywood all night long” with a cash bar and Indian food for sale at Seattle Design Center.

Eastside Roaring ‘20s party

December 31, 2020
25.6 miles NE
A ticket to New Year’s Eve Roaring ‘20s includes “sumptuous appetizers inspired by the 1920s,” a no-host bar, dancing to an electro swing band, and a champagne toast plus a fireworks show at midnight in the hippodrome at Carnation Farms.

New Year’s Eve at Emerald Downs

December 31, 2020
26 miles south
The New Year’s Eve Party in the Clubhouse Casino features the Sonic Funk Orchestra playing 1970s disco-dance party music at 9 p.m., a casino, a free champagne toast at midnight, and free parking for age 21+.

Tour artists’ studios

December 2020
(undated)
Seattle locations
Shop from 22 artists at 6 studios who make clothing, jewelry, glass, ceramics, prints, and more on Seattle Sampling Artists’ Studio Tour. Free.

Gingerbread houses

December 2020
(undated)
0.2 miles SE
See five elaborate houses made mostly of food at the Gingerbread Village at Sheraton Seattle Hotel. Lines can be long at times. Open until 9 p.m., except 11 p.m. on Fridays & Saturdays. Free.

Modern Nutcracker

December 2020
(undated)
0.3 miles NE
Witty and irreverent, The Hard Nut is a retro-modern take on the beloved Nutcracker, with gender-bending snowflakes, twinkle-toed G.I. Joe’s, and a Soul Train-style dance line at The Paramount Theatre.

Technology party

December 2020
(undated)
0.3 miles SW
Wear anything from a T-shirt to a tuxedo to GeekWire Gala and “see familiar faces, make new friends, and enjoy an evening of conversation, tasty treats, and festive cocktails with great music” at The Showbox for age 21+.

Ugly sweater happy hour

December 2020
(undated)
0.4 miles south
Don your ugliest holiday wear and head to Trace Seattle (the bar at W Seattle) for Eat, Drink & Be Ugly. The DJ arrives at 4 p.m. and the happy hour menu is valid until 8 p.m. Free

Holiday concert

December 2020
(undated)
0.5 miles south
Holiday Pops features the Seattle Symphony, vocalists, and University of Washington Chorale, at Benaroya Hall.

Ugly sweater bar crawl

December 2020
(undated)
0.6 miles SW
Wear your tackiest holiday duds to Ugly Sweater Pub Crawl, and follow the posted route to visit 10 bars and photo opportunities between Pike Place Market and Pioneer Square with the wristband and age 21 ID.

Dog holidays

December 2020
(undated)
1 mile south
Bring your four-legged friend in costume to Pioneer Square Howlidays for dog treats, a pop-up dog park, carolers, cocoa, and a costume contest at noon at Occidental Park.

Winter at Seattle Center

December 2020
(undated)
1 mile NW
Enjoy holiday lights, skating at Fisher Pavilion (cost), folk dancers, carolers, dancers, ice sculptors, model trains, and professional entertainment during Winterfest at the Seattle Center. See schedule. No events on Dec. 25. Free.

Contemporary dance

December 2020
(undated)
1.2 miles east
Next Fest NW Performances is an experimental new works festival at Velocity Dance Center.

Rock concert

December 2020
(undated)
1.4 miles south
Deck the Hall Ball is an annual marathon concert that features popular bands at WAMU Theater, run by Seattle radio station KNDD 107.7 FM or “The End.”

Winter solstice celebration

December 2020
(undated)
2.9 miles north
Seattle Secular Solstice promises “food, light, song, and camaraderie” to bring Seattleites together and brighten the darkest days of winter at St. Patrick Catholic Church. Donation.

Holiday concert

December 2020
(undated)
4.9 miles SE
Snow Globe features performances by Kristin Chambers, The Mack Grout Trio, Tekla Waterfield, and Debbie Miller at The Royal Room for all ages to benefit Northwest Harvest. Optional dinner. Doors at 6 p.m.

Holiday exchange

December 2020
(undated)
6.5 miles NW
No money changes hands at the Barter Fair & Holiday Party. Instead, bring things you cooked, made, or do as a service to trade. There will be food, drinks and music at Sunset Hill Community Club in Ballard. Free.

Native craft fair

December 2020
(undated)
6.6 miles NW
Shop for art prints, clothing, jewelry, woodworking, drums, and lunch at Native Art Mart at Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center in Discovery Park. Free.

Beer festival

December 2020
(undated)
7 miles NE
A ticket to Winter Beer Fest includes eight five-ounce samples from 50 Washington breweries, a ballot to vote for your favorites, and food truck cuisine for sale at Hangar 30 in Magnuson Park for age 21+.

Ugly sweater cruise

December 2020
(undated)
9.8 miles NE
Wear a tacky Christmas sweater aboard Ugly Sweater Holiday Party Cruise, which includes a drink ticket, appetizers, city views, DJ music, and an ugly sweater contest, departing from north Lake Union for age 21+.

Pet friendly run/walk

December 2020
(undated)
16.2 miles SE
Join the K9 Candy Cane 5K Fun Run and Walk from Renton Community Center along the beautiful Cedar River Trail, either with or without a leashed dog.

Wine tasting in Woodinville

December 2020
(undated)
18.4 miles NE
A $60 ticket to St. Nick’s Holiday Wine Weekend includes a glass and tastings at 25 wineries plus 2 breweries connected by shuttle bus in Woodinville.

Ice Racing

December 2020
(undated)
28.3 miles north
Watch motorcycles go from zero to 60 mph in three seconds over a slippery ice surface at Xtreme International Ice Racing as drivers compete to earn points at Angel of the Winds Arena in Everett.

Model Train Festival

December 2020
(undated)
33 miles south
Watch model trains run through detailed scenes of the Pacific Northwest, and see railroad-history exhibits at the Model Train Festival at the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma. See Santa some days. Closed December 24 & 25.

Family concert in Tacoma

December 2020
(undated)
34.4 miles south
Angels in the Architetecture: A Holiday Celebration features the Tacoma Concert Band playing “some of the most beautiful classic melodies of the season, plus transcriptions of rarely performed works with a holiday theme” at Pantages Theater.

Wine tasting at Lake Chelan

December 2020
(undated)
177 miles east
Taste new wine directly from the barrel at 20 wineries in Eastern Washington during the Fall Barrel Tasting.

Celtic Christmas

December 2020
(undated)
multiple cities
Celtic Yuletide is Irish music, dance, storytelling, juggling, and songs performed by Magical Strings, with shows in Kingston, Kent, Leavenworth, Tacoma, Seattle, Mt. Vernon, and Bellevue.

Christmas ship parade

December 2020
(undated)
Lake Washington & Puget Sound
Ride on the main ship with the choir, or on a “follow boat” for adults, or listen from shore (unless the schedule says the shore event is private) during the Christmas Ship Festival with many departure points.

Short Nutcracker

December 2020
(undated)
Auburn, Bellevue, Renton
Evergreen City Ballet offers one-hour and two-hour versions of the holiday classic ballet The Nutcracker in Auburn, Bellevue, and Renton. After the performance, dancers meet the audience in the lobby.

Christmas play

December 2020
(undated)
0.3 miles east
A Christmas Carol is Charles Dickens’ holiday classic about the amazing transformation of miserly Scrooge at ACT Theatre.

Santa bar crawl

December 2020
(undated)
0.3 miles SE
Wear a Santa suit or a holiday costume to SantaCon, which begins at Westlake Park and then heads to 15 city bars until closing time. Bring cash for faster lines. Drinking on streets and sidewalks is illegal.

Christmas improv

December 2020
(undated)
0.4 miles SW
Audience suggestions add funny twists to the story of Ebenezer Scrooge and Tiny Tim at An Improvised Christmas Carol by Unexpected Productions at Pike Place Market.

Live radio show

December 2020
(undated)
0.4 miles SE
Performed live onstage as a radio production, Goodbye, Christmas is an original holiday drama about two baseball broadcasters, featuring local radio hosts, live music, and sound effects at Town Hall Seattle for all ages.

Christmas concert

December 2020
(undated)
0.5 mile south
A PLU Christmas features the choir, chorale, and orchestra of Pacific Lutheran University, performed at Benaroya Hall.

Christmas movie

December 2020
(undated)
1.3 miles NW
A ticket to the classic movie White Christmas (featuring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, and Rosemary Clooney) includes free jingle bells and a pre-film music-video sing along with Christmas songs at SIFF Film Center.

Seattle jazz

December 2020
(undated)
1.5 miles NW
Hear the entire score of the holiday classic A Charlie Brown Christmas at Cornish Playhouse at the Seattle Center. The evening performance has cocktails for sale beginning at 6 p.m.

Christmas event in stadium

December 2020
(undated)
1.7 miles south
Enchant Christmas features a maze where you look for Santa’s reindeer, an ice-skating rink, Christmas shops, food vendors, music, and lots of photos opportunities at T-Mobile Park. You choose an entrance time when buying a ticket. Children age 3 and younger are free.

Indoor Christmas lights

December 2020
(undated)
3.2 miles NW
Lumaze has half a million lights, interactive features, illuminated sculptures, an artisan marketplace, food trucks, breweries, and wineries at Smith Cove Cruise Terminal on Pier 91. Closed Dec. 25.

Boat parade

December 2020
(undated)
3.6 miles north
The 65 lit and decorated boats in the Christmas Ship Parade of Boats Night begin passing through the Fremont Cut about 8:30 p.m. Free to watch onshore.

Christmas concert in Bellevue

December 2020
(undated)
10.8 miles west
Sammamish Symphony performs a “traditional blend of seasonal favorites and other beloved gems from the symphonic repertoire” with a choir and soprano during Christmas in Bellevue at Meydenbauer Convention Center.

Nutcracker ballet - Renton

December 2020
(undated)
14 miles south
Ensemble Ballet Theatre performs The Nutcracker at Renton IKEA Performing Arts Center.

Nutcracker Ballet - north end

December 2020
(undated)
Edmonds & Everett
Olympic Ballet Theatre performs The Nutcracker, including shorter children’s versions on two days.
  • Edmonds Center for the Arts
  • Everett Performing Arts Center

Christmas play in Tacoma

December 2020
(undated)
33.8 miles south
A Christmas Carol is Charles Dickens’ holiday classic about the amazing transformation of miserly Scrooge when he’s visited by ghosts at Pantages Theater.

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