Holiday events with a pandemic twist

Not everything is canceled. Consider these celebrations.

By Nat Rubio-Licht

Seattle, USA- December 3, 2013: The Westlake Center shopping mall in downtown with the illuminated Christmas tree at twilight.

November 25, 2020

The holidays are a bit different this year, but there are still plenty of activities to choose from. Some holiday events and organizations in Seattle have switched to digital or socially distanced programming. From the annual performances of “The Nutcracker” to a stroll down Snowflake Lane, here are a few options to bring some holiday cheer while remaining safe. 

Build a candy-covered gingerbread house

If your family has a sweet tooth, consider the KidsQuest Children’s Museum’s Gingerbread Candy Shoppe. Hosted in Bellevue Square, choose all your favorite sweets in its classic candy shop and take home a gingerbread house building kit.

Candy shop visits and gingerbread kits cost $45 for KidsQuest members and $50 for non-members. Families can book a visit time from Dec. 16 to Dec. 19. 

Pacific Northwest Ballet’s virtual showing of “The Nutcracker”

The Pacific Northwest Ballet is bringing the iconic performance of George Balanchine’s “The Nutcracker” to your screens at home. Starting Dec. 18 for regular ticket holders and Dec. 11 for Digital Performance Plus buyers, viewers can dive into a “candy-filled dreamland.” 

Regular tickets cost $39$ and Plus tickets cost $55. The Plus tickets include Olivia’s reading list, a gallery of costume sketches by designer Ian Falconer and videos of the dancers discussing their roles. Streaming ends Dec. 26. 

Watch the Westlake Center tree lighting from home

Watch the Westlake Center tree lighting from your home. Due to state regulations on public gatherings, the Downtown Seattle Association has canceled the public event. However, KIRO-7 will broadcast the lighting of the tree and Westlake Park light sculptures live. 

Virtual festivities begin at 5 p.m. Nov. 27.

Take a virtual photo with Santa

Picture Me Santa is partnering with The Landing in Renton to provide families with photos with Santa from home. Upload an uncropped photo of you or your child to Picture Me Santa’s website to get a photoshopped picture. The photo submitted must have a white backdrop. 

Pictures with Santa start at $29.99 for one person in the photo and an additional $6 for each other person. Prints come in the mail in three to seven days. The Landing in Renton is offering a $5 discount, using the code “SANTATL” at checkout. 

Check out the lights on Snowflake Lane

Though Snowflake Lane will not have a parade or performers this year, the lights will still be bright for all to see. Starting Nov. 27, every night between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m., lights and music will bring holiday cheer to Bellevue Way, presented by The Bellevue Collection. 

The drive or stroll is free for all, but The Bellevue Collection asks that viewers wear a mask and observe social distancing for safety. The display will be available until Dec. 24. 

Take an Instagram-able winter selfie

To get into the winter spirit, downtown Seattle shopping center Pacific Place is offering 20 selfie spots throughout the shopping center. You can take family selfies with winter animals, modern wreaths, holiday marquees and lit up trees, with photo spots for your pets as well. 

You can enter photos in Pacific Place’s holiday photo contest. Tag your photos on Instagram with @pacific_place throughout the month of December to be entered for a chance to win a $100 gift card from the store or restaurant in the shopping center. Four winners will be randomly chosen and notified by Jan. 7 via Instagram direct message.

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