Festivities bring holiday spirit

By Kelsey Par - Staff Reporter

South King County residents have a plethora of festive activities to look forward to this holiday season.

Des Moines

Destination Des Moines hosts its annual Holiday Tree Lighting and Pajama Party at the Big Catch Plaza on Dec. 4. Activities will include caroling, live music, face painting and free photos with Santa.

Hot chocolate and cookies will be provided. The Des Moines Area Food Bank will be collecting non-perishable food items and new pajama sets for families in need.

The event runs from 6-8 p.m. and is at the corner of 216th and Marine View Drive. For more information, visit destinationdesmoines.org.

The Des Moines Parks and Recreation and Argosy Cruises will host their annual Christmas Ships and Bon Fires events on Dec. 7, and Dec. 15.

On Dec. 7, the ship will sail out of the marina and pause in front of Beach Park for a bonfire and choral performances for the community.

The bonfire is presented by Des Moines Parks and Recreation. On Dec. 15, the Christmas Ship returns for a voyage to Browns Point and a bonfire before returning to Redondo for a bonfire sponsored by the Redondo community.

Highline's MaST Center will also host an open house that night in conjunction with the Christmas Ship event. Guests can enjoy the event from land for free, or book passage on the Christmas ships.

Ticket prices range from $21-$35 and additional information can be found at argosycruises.com.

The Mount Rainier Pool hosts its second annual Winter Waterland event from Dec. 19 to Jan 2. The pool will have special themes each day and will offer treats and toys for guests.

The events run from noon to 2 p.m. through Jan. 2. Mount Rainier Pool is at 22722 19th Ave. S. For more information regarding scheduling and prices, visit MtRainierPool.com

Federal Way

The Federal Way Arts Commission will host its annual Holiday Tree Lighting event led by Mayor Jim Ferrell at Town Square Park. The event will include musical performances from Silver Lake Elementary Choir, Brigadoon Elementary Honor and Choir, Thomas Jefferson High School Drumline.

Santa Claus and his live Reindeer will arrive by fire truck to greet the public. The event is on Dec. 3, from 4-6 p.m. and is at 31620 Pete Von Reichbauer Way S.

For more information, visit itallhappenshere.org.

The 2016 Federal Way Winter Market runs from Dec. 19 to Dec. 14 at the Commons Mall. The event will feature handcrafted items, crafts, gifts, jewelry, oils, scarves, gloves, Christmas decorations and more.

Hours are 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 1928 S. Commons. For more information, visit fairsandfestivals.net.

Wild Waves Theme Park hosts its annual Holiday with Lights Christmas-themed event through Dec. 31. The park features more than 25 rides and attractions to be illuminated in lights for the event.

Children can visit Toyland where they can play in a falling snow tent, write a letter to Santa and make holiday crafts. Frosty the Snowman and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer will join guests in a holiday sing-a-long each night at 6 and 8 p.m.

Admission ranges from $8-15 and tickets can be purchase online or on site. The park is at 36201 Enchanted Pkwy S., Federal Way. For more information, visit wildwaves.com.


Discover Burien hosts its annual Winterfest in downtown Burien on Dec. 3. Activities will include free Santa photos, horse and carriage rides and in-store specials.

The event is free and runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. along Southwest 152nd Street. For more information, visit burienwa.gov.

The Moshier Community Art Center hosts its annual Holiday Pottery Sale on Dec. 3. Twice a year potters from the art center come together to sell their handmade works.

Items include mugs, bowls, serving dishes, casseroles, garden art, soap, dishes, jewelry and more. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 430 S. 156th. For more information, visit burienwa.gov.


The City of Auburn hosts a free holiday-themed Santa Parade and Tree Lighting event in Downtown Auburn on Dec. 3. The parade line-up begins at 4 p.m. on E Street Northeast. The parade is followed by community caroling and lighting of a Christmas tree by Santa at City Hall. All ages are welcome and registration is required. One can register online or by mail. For more information, visit auburnwa.gov.

Washington Elementary hosts a Holiday Snack and Craft event on Dec. 3, followed by the parade in downtown Auburn. Activities include gingerbread house building, cookie decorating, ornament making and more.

Hot beverages and snacks will be provided for all guests. The event runs from 2-4 p.m. at 20 E. St. N.E. For more information, visit auburnwa.gov.

The Auburn Senior Activity Center hosts its annual Holiday Lunch on Dec. 22. Lunch items will include ham, au gratin potatoes, mixed vegetables, rolls, pie and more.

The first seating is at 11 a.m. and the final seating is at 1 p.m. The suggested contribution is $3 and $6 for those younger than 60. The feast is at 809 9th St. S.E. For more information, visit auburnwa.gov.


This year's Kent Winterfest features an array of holiday-themed family events. Activities include cookie decorating, storytime reading, live chorale performances, and a tree lighting ceremony hosted by Santa.

The event runs from 3:30-7:30 p.m. at Town Square Plaza (Second avenue North) and Kent Station (301 Railroad Ave. N.).

The event is free and will offer popcorn, hot cider and hot chocolate. For more information, visit visitkent.com.


The Renton Community Center hosts the K9 Candy Cane 5K Fun Run and Walk on Dec. 4. The route follows the Cedar River Trail and loops back to the Community Center.

The event welcomes all ages and those with or without dogs. It will feature refreshments, photos with Santa, prizes giveaways and a pet food drive.

Registration is $33 through Dec. 3 and $40 on Dec. 4. One can register online at signmeup.com The event begins at 9 a.m. at 1715 S.E. Maple Valley Highway. For more information, call 425-430-6711.

Ivar's 2016 Annual Clam Lights event begins on Dec. 2 at Renton's Gene Coulon Memorial Beach Park. The event will feature live entertainment, photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, an Argosy Christmas Ship visitation, chorale by the Dickens Carolers and more.

The event runs nightly from 5-9 p.m. through Jan. 1. Ivar's Clam Lights is free and welcomes all ages. It is at 1201 Lake Washington Blvd N. For more information, visit rentonwa.gov or call 425-430-6700.

Normandy Park

The Normandy Park Economic Development Committee hosts its fourth annual Tree Lighting Ceremony at Normandy Park Market on Dec. 3. The Manhattan Village will host cookie decorating at QFC, Santa and Carolers from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Then the Normandy Park Towne Center will offer its Tree Lighting Ceremony, choirs, arts and crafts, games and prizes, and hot beverages and treats from 5-6:30 p.m.

The Normandy Park Towne Center is at 19900 1st Ave. S. For more information, call 206-818-6945.


Tyee High School in SeaTac will host a winter Holiday Bazaar on Dec. 3. Vendors will offer arts and crafts, food, music and more. The event will also feature pictures with Santa, a used clothing drive, children's activity center, auctions and a raffle and more than 100 booths on handmade items.

Proceeds will go towards Tyee student activities. The event runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 4424 S. 188th St. For more information, call 206-631-6460.

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