By Lesley Van Winkle, News of Mill Creek.
During this dark and often dreary time of year it’s always fun to pile the kids in the car, bring along some hot cocoa to sip on, play Christmas music, and take a drive around local neighborhoods looking at Christmas light displays.
There are also several organized light displays throughout the area, some are free and others charge a small fee or ask for donations of canned goods.
Here are some suggestions; click on the links for more information, bundle up and enjoy the lights!
More than one million Christmas lights will be displayed during 19 days in December, a spectacle spread over 15 acres at Warm Beach Camp in Stanwood, Washington.
The Lights of Christmas is the largest holiday light display in the Pacific Northwest that combines live entertainment, children's activities, food, holiday shopping and more.
- Where: 20800 Marine Drive, Stanwood, WA 98292.
- When: November 30-December 3, 7-10, 14-17, 19-23, 26-30, 2017; 5-10pm.
- Cost: $12 to $16, (0-3 Free). Group rates available.
Enjoy amazing light displays, music, a train, hot cocoa and cookies.
- Where: 3429 240th St SE, Bothell, WA 98021.
- When: 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm, November 24th through December 24th - Christmas lights continue after December 24th through January 1st, but the train display, hot cocoa, and free cookies end on December 24th at 9:00 pm.
- Cost: Free.
Garden d’Lights features over half a million lights, which transform the Bellevue Botanical Garden into a blossoming winter wonderland.
- Where: Bellevue Botanical Garden, 12001 Main Street, Bellevue, WA 98005.
- When: November 25 through December 31, 2017.
- Hours: 4:30 pm to 9:00 pm (the lights go out at 9:30 pm), every evening, including holidays.
- Cost: $5 per person; children 10 and under are free and do not need a ticket.
- Event Free Nights: Remaining Free nights: December 4, 5, 6, 7.
Snowflake Lane is a magical evening performance for the entire family. It’s a holiday spectacle of live toy soldier drummers, exhilarating music, animated snow characters, glittering lights all surrounded by snow falling every night along Bellevue Way.
- Where: Between NE 6th to NE 8th on Bellevue Way. On the street between Bellevue Square, Lincoln Square and Bellevue Place in Bellevue, Washington.
- When: Every evening through December 24, at 7:00 pm.
- Cost: Free.
Woodinville Wonderland is a family oriented celebration of the Christmas Season, It is held at a private residence in a wonderful rural setting. Thousands visit each year. It is an artful blend of tradition and technology that is best experienced live. It is an outdoor adventure, so ensure you bundle up accordingly.
- Where: 23620 NE 183rd St Woodinville, WA.
- When: Current Display Hours: Sun - Thurs 5 pm to 9 pm; Fri - Sat 5 pm to 10 pm.
- Cost: Free / Donations are accepted for Special Olympics of Washington and the local NorthShore Wrangles.
Experience a winter wonderland at Woodland Park Zoo’s annual WildLights!
More than 600,000 sparkling LED lights will recreate wild animals and wild places along the zoo’s pathways, along with many family activities including; snowball fights and visits with Santa and his reindeer.
- Where: There are two zoo entrances: 5500 Phinney Ave. N., Seattle WA 98103 and 750 N. 50th Street, Seattle WA 98103.
- When: November 24, 2017 - January 1, 2018. Open 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm nightly. Closed December 24 and 25.
- Cost: $7.95 to $9.95.
The neighborhood of Fir Grove in South Everett is popular for its annual tradition of many decorated homes and an amazing light display. Fir Grove is located close to the Silver Lake Costco at the intersection of 21st Avenue SE and 104th Street SE. Donations are taken for the Salvation Army.
Several Mill Creek neighborhoods go all out with Christmas lights, let us know if your neighborhood is one of them and we’ll include it in this article.
The Mill Creek Community Association, Mill Creek’s largest homeowners association, has been conducting an annual Christmas lighting and decoration contest called the Elf Award Contest for decades.
The Association recognizes those neighbors who decorate in style for the holidays.
Stay tuned and we’ll be posting the results of the 2017 Elf Award Contest when they become available.