Fourteen years ago, we visited the Pacific Northwest in December to see if we wanted to relocate to the area. One of the things I remember from the trip is my husband explaining that the two hours he spent looking for where he had parked his car after his job interview were filled with trees being lit up with twinkle lights and happening upon carolers. After the deep breath and retelling of the saga when he got back to the hotel, he used these as some of the reasons why he loved the city.
The term we use now for the feeling is “Christmas Magic.” It’s basically a catch-all for when we’re answering the illusion-breaking questions, we’ll call them, from the kids or when something happens like coming out of the Christmas Eve play we saw last year (our tradition is to see a show at the Bathhouse Theater at Greenlake), and having everything covered in snow despite not having any snow on the ground when we went in.
It’s kind of hokey, or really hokey, but there are some things that are very fun to do related to the holidays that just don’t have the same effect.
If you’re on board with the twinkle lights and carol singing, or you’re just looking for a distraction from your newsfeed, there are some local events leading up to Christmas that fit the bill.
The Kruckerberg Botanical Garden invites you to join them in ”bringing light to some of the darkest nights of the year” at their Solstice Stroll. The garden is just over 10 minutes from downtown Edmonds, according to the app I use for directions. You can see the garden aglow with light at this “rain or shine” event on Dec. 20, 21 and 22 from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. The garden is closed during regular operating hours on these days, as is the parking lot.
If you are interested in the Solstice Stroll, there is reserved parking at the Richmond Beach Congregational Church, 1512 N.W. 195th St., Shoreline, where you can catch a free shuttle to and from the garden. Admission to the Solstice Stroll is free, though a suggested donation of $10 is encouraged. For more information on this event, you can visit Kruckerberg.org.
Following the success of last year’s inaugural event, the City of Edmonds and members of Ed!– the Edmonds Downtown Alliance – are excited to announce the return of the Edmonds Holiday Caroling Contest: Jingle Those Bells! While the deadline to enter the “fun, light hearted caroling contest” has passed, on Dec. 19 from 6 to 7 p.m., you can enjoy as a spectator on the Red Twig Patio, 5th and Dayton in downtown Edmonds. Cast your vote for your favorite of the five groups, who are encouraged to use “catchy holiday-themed names.”
For more information on this event, visit EdmondsHolidays.com. While on the website, you can find information about the Holiday Market and Holiday Trolley, which will both run one more time on Saturday, Dec. 22.
Art Walk Edmonds will be on Thursday, Dec. 20 from 5 to 8 p.m.. While this is a fun event year-round, ARTspot is having an Art Walk Holiday Activity Night. You are invited to “come make an ornament at ARTspot!” Stencils and paint markers will be available for you to make a mini canvas.
The Edmonds Bookshop will also have a simple craft project ready to make and take home. Plus, an Instagram post of the sign outside the shop says they will “Help choose. Wrap. Ship. Boom – All Done!” So that’s hard to pass up.
For more information on these events and the other Art Walk Edmonds participants, you can visit ArtWalkEdmonds.com.
Jen Marx, an Edmonds mom of two boys, is always looking for a fun place to take the kids that makes them tired enough to go to bed on time.