Must List: The Polar Express Train Ride, Bainbridge Island Studio Tour, Miracle on 2nd

Your weekly guide to Seattle's hottest events
| Updated: December 5, 2019

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The Polar Express™ Train Ride
(Through 12/31)
Step into the pages of The Polar Express, Chris Van Allsburg’s beloved Christmas tale (and inspiration for the 2004 film) on this 90-minute train ride. Listen to a reading of The Polar Express, enjoy entertainment, hot chocolate and cookies from the train’s chefs, and look out for a special visit from Santa himself. Experience the wonder of Christmas all while staying cozy—pajamas are encouraged. Times and prices vary. Mt. Rainier Railroad and Logging Museum, Elbe WA;


Bainbridge Island Studio Tour
Surround yourself with water and beautiful scenery while exploring new works by local artists during this biannual self-guided art show, now in its 35th year. A 30-minute ferry ride from Seattle lands you within reach of unique pieces, both finished and in progress, along with artists ready to talk about vision and process. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. Bainbridge Island, locations vary;


Gage Academy Drawing Jam
Providing much more than just models, Seattle’s main center for traditional instruction in representational art is sponsoring this open-mic night – whoops, open-pencil night – also offering art supplies, instruction, drawing demos, live music, food and a holiday bazaar. Plus drag queens for you to sketch! 9 a.m.-6 p.m. $15, free for children 12 and under. Gage Academy of Art, Capitol Hill;


Story Party Seattle: True Dating Stories
Our universal language is no longer music, it seems; it’s romantic humiliation. In this comedy show that’s toured the world, pro storytellers recount painful dating disasters for your amusement; you can submit your own stories (anonymously) at the show or online anytime at 4 p.m. $20. Market Theater, downtown;


Miracle on 2nd
(Through 12/25)
The beloved holiday transformation of Seattle bar Rob Roy has a new counterpart this year. Newly-opened Vinnie’s Raw Bar is getting a holiday makeover in this annual festive pop-up transformation of bars nationwide. Vinnie’s will be tiki-bar themed, fashioning drinks such as
Christmas Eve of Destruction and Papa Noel, while Rob Roy will remain true to its holiday roots, serving up old favorites such as the Snowball Old Fashioned and the Christmapolitan. Try these special holiday elixirs before they go away—it’ll be another year until this miracle transformation happens again. Times, prices and locations vary; Facebook: ‘Miracle on 2nd’


2019 Jingle Bell Run
Gather a fundraising team or just sign up to run and join in on the 12K/5K/1-mile madness benefitting the Arthritis Foundation. For the 21 and over runners, be sure to check out the Holiday Cheer Garden after the race, serving beer and cider to participants—the first drink is on the house. There’s plenty to do for younger participants, including a visit from Santa’s reindeer and an interactive Elf Village Kids Area. Times and prices vary. Westlake Park, downtown;


Hello Kitty Friends Around the World Tour  
Celebrating 45 years of spreading friendship and kindness across the globe, Hello Kitty returns to Seattle on a pop-up tour around the United States. The 10,000 square foot pop-up will include five interactive rooms representing different parts of the world, including Paris, Tokyo, Honolulu, London and New York. The Seattle leg also includes the Hello Kitty Lodge, a PNW-themed relax area complete with treats and beverages after the tour. Times and prices vary. Bellevue;

Coming up:
These events are weeks away but are bound to sell out—get your tickets now.


New Year’s Eve Party at Chihuly Garden and Glass
Enjoy a midnight champagne toast and an overhead view of the Space Needle fireworks through the museum’s glass ceiling after an evening of dining and dancing to the Michael Benson Band. This is a 21-and-older event. $250. Chihuly Garden and Glass, Seattle Center;


 A self-described inclusive, diversity-focused, games convention, OrcaCon is a packed weekend of all types of tabletop games. This year’s theme focuses on LGBTQIA+ creators, designers and artists of tabletop games, with panels for gamers to ask questions to the creators themselves. From its opening on Friday morning to its closing on Sunday evening, the convention will have gaming opportunities 24 hours, truly giving you the chance to stay and play. Times and prices vary. Hilton Bellevue, Bellevue;


SILVA- The Story of Washington – Seafood Menu
Round out the year with a 12-course tasting menu comprised of entirely Washington grown and caught ingredients. Local chef Eric Rivera will use methods from fire to modern techniques to bring an array of food highlighting the best of our state. Items will include clams, mussels, Dungeness crab and oysters, while other ingredients will be chosen closer to the date of the event. 6 p.m. $125. addo:incubator, Ballard;

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