If you're traveling to Seattle and Tacoma this Easter, you'll find plenty of things to do to celebrate the holiday: It's a day of religious reverence, a day to welcome and appreciate the spring, and a day to enjoy Seattle's outdoors, too. Whether you hunt for Easter eggs in city parks, embark on a brunch cruise on lakes Union or Washington, or attend the annual Snohomish Easter Parade, you're sure to get in the holiday spirit on your trip to northern Washington this Easter.
Enjoy Easter Brunch With Your Family
Perhaps the most popular way to spend Easter morning in the region is by going out to brunch and enjoying fresh smoked local salmon, cheese, fruit, pastries, and other tasty breakfast treats. Easter brunch options range from casual restaurants and fine dining establishments to several cruise companies that offer special brunch tours that day. Additionally, Easter buffet services are plentiful in Seattle and Tacoma and are available at just about every price point, from moderate to upscale.
For moderately priced buffets and brunches, look to Anthony’s, which has restaurants in Tacoma, Seattle, Gig Harbor, Kirkland, and other Puget Sound cities that offer a fixed-price Easter dinner. Other chains that commonly have an Easter brunch or dinner include Salty’s and The Melting Pot, which both have several locations in the area.
In Tacoma, fine dining restaurants located in downtown often offer brunches or dinners for the holiday as well. These include Pacific Grill, Stanley, and Seafort’s in McKinley Hill. Additionally, many Tacoma restaurants have regular Sunday brunches that are also available for Easter.
When it comes to unique ways for enjoying Easter brunch, there's no way quite like embarking on a brunch or dinner cruise on Elliot Bay or one of Seattle's many lakes. While a few local cruise companies offer such services, the best deal around can be found through Argosy Cruises, which offers an Easter brunch cruise to Blake Island.
Argosy Cruises' annual Easter Brunch on Blake Island event invites guests to take a round-trip cruise from Pier 55 in Seattle to Blake Island, where they are treated to a delicious brunch buffet complete with traditional salmon, french toast, bacon, and other breakfast staples in Tillicum Village. Kids are also invited to take part in two age-appropriate Easter egg hunts accompanied by appearances by the Easter Bunny. Afterward, stick around for more cultural experiences in the Tillicum Village, including authentic Native American performances and cultural activities celebrating the Easter holiday.
Another local cruise company, Waterways Cruises, also serves up brunch for the Easter holiday each year during a two-hour cruise on Lake Union and Lake Washington. Cruises depart from either from ports on Lake Union or from the Kirkland City Dock in Marina Park. While you sail across the waters, fill your plate from the brunch buffet, raise your glass for a champagne toast, and listen to live music and the captain’s narration of sights along the way. There's usually an appearance of the SeaBunny—Waterways Cruises' version of the Easter Bunny—for kids, although his presence varies year to year.
Attend Easter Mass
Whether you're a practicing Catholic or you just enjoy the religious aspect of Easter and want to spend your morning remembering the reason for the holiday celebration, Easter Mass is a great way to start your Easter adventures around Seattle. Fortunately, there are a number of great churches, cathedrals, and chapels around the region that offer beautiful Easter Sunday Mass.
Perhaps the most beautiful and ornate place to attend Easter Mass is at St. James Cathedral on Ninth Avenue in Seattle's First Hill neighborhood. Featuring high, cavernous ceilings and extensive collections of stained glass artwork that was installed in the late 1910s by Charles Connick, St. James Cathedral is the mother church of the Archdiocese of Seattle and the seat of its archbishop, who delivers the Easter Mass.
Other great locations to attend Easter Mass include Seattle University's Chapel of St. Ignatius, the Good Shepherd Lutheran Church on 56th Street in Tacoma, and St. Leo's Cathedral on South 13th Street in Tacoma.
If you have kids and don’t want to hide Easter eggs all around your yard—or the hotel room where you're staying—there are several Easter egg hunts in Seattle as well as to the south and north.
One of the biggest egg hunts in town takes place at the Woodland Park Zoo, where kids can hunt Easter eggs while the animals enjoy their own holiday treats. However, several other city parks and smaller venues in Seattle also hold annual egg hunts—including a few for older kids and teens.
For a special treat, head to Redmond, Washington, for the annual Scrambled Egg 5K, which features a five-kilometer fun run with a holiday twist: eggs are hidden all along the course, and participants are encouraged to fill their Easter baskets with as many as they can carry while they run, walk, and/or skip to the finish line.
Each year, the Homeward Pet Adoption Center of Woodinville, Washington, hosts a special Easter event at Camp Charlie's private off-leash dog park in Duvall to raise money for its animal services. Known as the Easter B'egg Hunt, this remarkably adorable holiday event invites guests to bring their four-legged friends to hunt eggs filled with puppy treats. Meanwhile, human guests are treated to refreshments, workshops, and the annual pet adoption drive while they watch their pets play with over 600 other pups.
On Easter Sunday starting at 11 a.m., the Snohomish Easter Parade serves up lots of Easter fun and small-town charm. The parade starts and centers around First Street in downtown Snohomish, and there's a bonnet contest directly after the parade at First Avenue and Avenue A. Pre-registration is required to march in the parade, and participants are expected to line up between 9:30 and 10 a.m. at First Street and Lincoln Avenue. On the other hand, no registration is required to take part in the Easter Bonnet Contest—just show up wearing you fanciest holiday attire for a chance to win fun prizes and the honor of being crowned the best of the parade.
Each year, Easter Swing takes over the Hyatt Regency Bellevue for a full weekend of workshops, vending, dance competitions, and other swing dance demonstrations. Passes are available to either participate in the festivities or to simply enjoy watching others show off their swing dancing skills. Prizes are awarded to the best dancers in each of the competitions, and all attendees are entered into a special holiday raffle that includes prizes like tickets to next year's event or free swing lessons at local dance studios in the Seattle/Bellevue region.
Although the Easter One-Day Tournament is geared more toward local soccer teams, all kids in fourth through 12th grades are welcome to register to participate in this annual event. Showcasing the best boys' and girls' teams in the region, this time-honored tradition takes place on Easter Sunday each year. Offered through Starfire Sports, the Easter One-Day Tournament requires a rather large entry fee and advanced registration to participate, but it's free to watch for spectators.