New and Familiar Holiday Traditions in Tacoma and Pierce County Washington

Point Defiance Zoo | I-5 Exit Guide
The lighted tunnel is longer than ever at this year's Zoolights event at Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium in Tacoma, Washington

2020 has certainly challenged the continuity of celebrations and traditions, but the holidays can offer the chance to retain or regain a sense of magic, wonder and community. Keep to holiday traditions when it is safe and responsible, and create new ones when the opportunity presents itself, in Tacoma and Pierce County.

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Zoolights at Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium
Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium, Tacoma
November 27, 2020 – January 3, 2021; 5 – 9 p.m.
The spectacular holiday tradition is still going strong, with 700,000+ lights, 3-D animal displays and a longer light tunnel than ever before for the perfect festive photos.

Fantasy Lights in Spanaway
Spanaway Park, Spanaway
November 21, 2020 – January 3, 2021; 5:30 – 9 p.m.
A 2-mile drive along Spanaway Lake, lit by more than 300 displays, makes Fantasy Lights the largest drive-thru holiday lights experience in the Pacific Northwest.

Holiday Magic at the Fair
Washington State Fairgrounds, Puyallup
December 4, 2020 – January 3, 2021; 5 – 10 p.m.
The traditional holiday festivities at the Washington State Fairgrounds have transformed into a drive-thru experience with festive light displays, tons of fair food favorites and holiday music to round out the joy.

Gig Harbor Lighted Boat Parade
Gig Harbor Waterfront, Gig Harbor
Saturday, Dec. 12, 2020; 5 p.m.
All along the Gig Harbor waterfront, lighted boats will float past, playing festive music, usually with a couple Santas thrown into the mix.

Reverse Parade of Lights
Lakewood Towne Center, Lakewood
Saturday, Dec. 12, 2020; 6– 8 p.m.
Instead of lining the streets for the big Lakewood annual parade, the “floats” will line the streets, and you and your family can stay in your car and drive by, keeping a safe, respectful distance.

Snowshoeing at Mount Rainier
Longmire and Paradise, Mount Rainier National Park
All winter
Rent snowshoes at Longmire for a full day of hiking around Longmire (the Trail of the Shadows is a great short hike), or road-conditions permitting, head up to Paradise for wide-open snowfields and views that will stop you in your tracks.

A Weekend Cabin Getaway for the Family
Ashford, Elbe, Eatonville
All winter
When you’re looking for some true social distance while staying close to the ones you love, think about booking a night or a weekend away at a cabin or lodge at Mount Rainier.

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