Guide to Christmas in Spokane: Festivals, Events, Things to Do

Ice Skating at the Ice Ribbon

 Wikimedia Commons

The Christmas season brings extra opportunity to spend quality time with friends and family, and in Spokane, Washington, there are many places that visitors can enjoy the holiday spirit together. From special holiday displays and light shows to festive plays, performances, and gift bazaars, Spokane is a wonderful place to celebrate the season.

If you're planning on traveling to western Washington State this holiday season, Spokane is the ideal destination for your winter vacation. No matter what time of year you visit, you can check out the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture, the Tudor-style Campbell House, and the sculpture walk at the expansive Riverfront Park, but if you happen to be in town for the Christmas holiday, you'll get a chance to see all these features lit up with dazzling lights and handmade decorations.

01 of 06

The Spokane Civic Theatre's Holiday Shows

1020 N Howard St, Spokane, WA 99201, USA
+1 509-325-2507

Every year, the Spokane Civic Theatre presents a lineup of fantastic holiday-themed performances, and in 2018, they're bringing a new show to the stage: "Elf, The Musical." Based on the 2003 movie, this musical is centered around Buddy an orphaned elf-human who travels from Santa's house on the North Pole to New York City to find his birth father. This seasonal hit is fun for the whole family.

Be sure to check the official website and book your tickets in advance as performances are likely to sell out by the time you get there.

02 of 06

The Martin Woldson Theater at the FOX's Holiday Shows

The Nutcracker at FOX's Theatre

 David Bazemore

1001 W Sprague Ave, Spokane, WA 99201-4016, USA
+1 509-624-1200

One of Spokane's great treasures, the Martin Woldson Theater at the FOX, is a special place to visit any time of year, but during the holiday season, this landmark establishment brings holiday fun for the whole family with a limited run of holiday shows and Christmas-themed performances.

This year's performances include the Whitworth University's Christmas Festival Concert (December 8-9, 2018) and Spokane Symphony: The Nutcracker (November 29 to December 2, 2018), although more special events may be announced, so check the website for more details.

The Christmas Festival Concert is recommended if you're traveling with kids because the chorus will perform Christmas and winter holiday favorites that you and your children can sing along with!

03 of 06

The Bing Crosby Theater's Holiday Shows

Affiniti - A Celtic Christmas

 The Bing Crosby Theater

901 W Sprague Ave, Spokane, WA 99201-4014, USA
+1 509-227-7638

The historic Bing Crosby Theater in downtown Spokane offers a full calendar of concerts, plays, and events throughout the year, but the Christmas season brings special performances from local and touring musicians, as well as film and theater.

In 2018 you can check out the "Open Wide the Doors for Christ" Christmas Concert (December 7, 2018) the 13th annual Bing Crosby Holiday Film Festival (December 8, 2018), "Affinity—A Celtic Christmas" (December 9, 2018), or catch a Christmas with C.S. Lewis (December 13, 2018). More special holiday performances may be announced in the coming weeks, so be sure to check out the official website for ticket information and to view details about upcoming shows.

04 of 06

Horse-drawn Carriage Rides in Downtown Spokane

 Downtown Spokane

222 N Wall St #308, Spokane, WA 99201-0813, USA
+1 509-458-2265

Kids of all ages will enjoy the thrill of riding in an old-fashioned horse-drawn carriage, snuggled side by side in the crisp holiday air with a cup of hot chocolate. The downtown carriage rides are available on Fridays from 3-8 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 12-5 p.m. between November 23 and December 23, 2018.

This year, the Wheatland Bank is sponsoring the program to make the carriage rides completely free for all visitors, but if you're planning your day around one, be sure to leave time for a few hours wait on the busiest days of the tourist season. The carriages rides can be picked up at 221 N Wall Street across from Wheatland Bank.

Continue to 5 of 6 below.
05 of 06

Ice Skating at the Ice Ribbon

 Spokane Riverfront Park

720 W Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99201, USA
+1 509-625-6600

The Riverfront Park will be returning with the Ice Ribbon, an outdoor skating adventure area that's part of the Parks and Recreation's first completed redevelopment project as part of a city bond initiative to improve this waterfront public park.

Experience three fire pits, free skating lessons, live music, themed costume events, happy hours, and a variety of other free programming provided by local sponsors. Ice Ribbon will be open from late November to February. Admission for one hour costs $6.95 for adults and $4.95 for children (ages 3-12). Skate rentals are priced at $4.50.

06 of 06

Holiday Light Cruises "Journey to the North Pole"

 Cally King

The Coeur d’Alene Resort Holiday Light Show’s Journey to the North Pole Cruise is one of Spokane's premier Christmas events. The 40-minute lake cruise floats by more than 1.5 million light displays with seasonal symbols like Santa, Rudolph, and a large animated Christmas tree. If you get tickets to the special Holiday Lighting Ceremony Cruise the night after Thanksgiving, you'll also get front row spots to a massive fireworks show over Lake Coeur d’Alene.

The cruise is available November 23, 2018 through January 1, 2019. Daily times include 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m., and 7:30 p.m. with extra slots available on the weekends. It costs $22.25 for adults, $21.55 for seniors (55+), and $7.50 for children ages 6-12. Children 5 years and under can go for free.

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5 Fun Ways to Celebrate the Holiday Season in Spokane