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Holidays at the Center Features a Festive Mix of In-Person and Virtual Events, Experiences and Activities

During this spirited and festive time at Seattle Center, venues across the grounds welcome visitors with holiday cheer, programming and decoration. Twinkling tree lights, provided by Climate Pledge Arena, line campus pathways to accompany colorful lighting on buildings and grounds, and many parts of the campus are resuming in-person events, with a delightful variety of live entertainment, live music, comedy and seasonal, family-friendly fare and more. Here is our list of things to do virtually (V) and in person (IP) this month. An “F” denotes free:  

Seattle Center Virtual Festál—(VF) While Virtual Festal 2021 has wrapped up for the year. This series of 24 ethnic cultural festivals has amassed an outstanding collection of digital content featuring cultural performances, presentations, panels discussions, streaming videos, cooking demonstrations and more. Festival information and digital links are available HERE

Seattle Center Sculpture Walk (IPF) features four art installations on the grounds now through the end of 2021. Developed through the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture Art Interruptions program, the outdoor works include Los Trabajadores, Sus Apoyos, Y La Comunidad (The Workers, Their Advocators, And The Community) by Jovita Mercado, International Fountain covered walkway; Might be Going to Have Imagined This Place by Jac Oliver Trautman, Fisher Pavilion ADA elevator and Artists at Play Plaza; Inverted Pyramid by Nate Clark, South Founders Court; and Resilience by Fumi Amano, Fisher Pavilion Rooftop.  

Make Anchor Up at the Armory Presented by WaFd Bank (IPF) your pre-game destination for Seattle Kraken home games. If you aren’t going to the game, stick around to watch the Kraken on the big screen and try some of the tasty food from the Armory Food & Event Hall vendors:  Kraken vs Penguins, Dec. 6; Kraken vs Jets, Dec. 9; Kraken vs Blue Jackets, Dec. 11; Kraken vs Oilers, Dec. 18; Kraken vs Maple Leafs, Dec. 19; Kraken vs Coyotes, Dec. 21; Kraken vs Flyers. Dec. 29 and Kraken vs Flames. Dec. 30.  

Artists at the Center (IPF) features free pop-up performances of emerging artists on the Seattle Center grounds to commemorate Climate Pledge Arena’s inaugural year. The program host Puget Sound-based music, dance, theatre, and multi-disciplinary performances through September 2022. The series launches with Positively Positive Education, 5 p.m., Nov. 30 at Seattle Center Monorail; Khu’éex’, 12:30 p.m., Dec. 5, Seattle Center Armory; Red Eagle Soaring, 5 p.m., Dec. 18, Theater Commons and Northwest Tap Connection, 12:30 p.m., Dec. 19, Armory.  

Awesome Exhibition (IP) features 38 large-scale LEGO® creations incorporating nearly 1 million LEGO® bricks, through Jan. 16, 2022, in Fisher Pavilion. This exclusive exhibit includes an 8-foot-tall, 660-pound Orca, the world’s first life-sized LEGO® brick Harley-Davidson and a NASA SLS rocket almost 25 feet high.  

Seattle History Worth Preserving: Buffalo Soldiers Exhibit (IPF) invites visitors to learn why Fort Lawton is essential to the historical narrative of Seattle and how hundreds of Buffalo Soldiers were stationed there. Many of the Black soldiers were accomplished musicians and took part in an Army band during WWI and WWII and served their county with integrity and pride yet were not allowed to eat or sleep with their fellow soldiers. The exhibit presents Michael Powers Jazz Concert, Dec 12, 4–6 p.m., in the Armory.  

Marion Oliver McCaw Hall presents Patton Oswalt Live–Who’s Ready to Laugh? (IP) 7:30 p.m., Dec 31. Ring in this New Year with comedian, actor and writer, whose work will inspire and entertain. 

Seattle Center Winterfest (V/IPF) creates a world of sparkling lights, festive amusements and family-friendly entertainment, through Dec. 31, online and at Seattle Center. You’ll find Winter Train & Village and live weekend entertainment in Seattle Center Armory, decked for the holidays. Catch the ice sculpting, 12 p.m.–2 p.m., Saturdays through Dec. 18 on Fisher Apron and check HERE for more on virtual Student Showcases, contests and more.  

December Mainstage events include (IPF): Guzo Band, 12:30 p.m., Dec 4; Dancer & Prancer, 12:30 p.m., Dec 11; Bailadores de Bronce, 12:30 p.m., Dec 12; Xmas Maximus, 2 p.m., Dec 12; D’Vonne Lewis Trio, 12:30 p.m., Dec 18; and Sierra’s Latin Jazz Project, 12:30 p.m., Dec 26. PLEASE NOTE: No in-person public events will take place at Seattle Center on New Year’s Eve, so be sure and check out T-Mobile New Year’s at the Needle, Dec 31, on KING 5 for North America’s largest structurally-launched fireworks and light spectacular to kick-off the New Year in high style. 

Academy of Interactive Entertainment (IPF) invites students in grades 10, 11 and 12 to learn about local and international game development, game programming, 3D animation and visual effects for film industries at AEI’s December Interactive Experience Day, 10 a.m.–1 p.m., Dec 11.  

A/NT Gallery (IPF) hosts A Youth Holiday Arts and Crafts Show presented by NW Folklife and A/NT Gallery, Dec. 1–Dec. 26. Opening Reception (IPF) is 6 p.m.–9 p.m., Dec. 4.  

Book-It Repertory Theatre (V) is taking the 2021–2022 season to slowly return to in-person productions. For now, the theater offers two audio dramas, perfect for at-home holiday viewing, Zen and the Art of an Android Beatdown and The Three Musketeer, streaming through June 30, 2022.  

Chihuly l Garden & Glass (IP) celebrates our region’s creative energy and inspiration through the artistic lens of glass artist Dale Chihuly. Exhibit hours are 10 a.m.–5 p.m., Sunday–Thursday and 10 a.m.–6 p.m., Friday–Sunday, Nov. 28–Dec. 17; 9:30 a.m.–6:30 p.m., Sunday–Saturday, Dec. 18–30 and 9:30 a.m.–6 p.m., Dec. 31. Warm up this season with live glassblowing demonstrations at the Community Hot Shop and stone-fired pizza in the outdoor Art Plaza, Nov. 24–Dec. 24. Elevate Clean protocols are in effect.  

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center, to mark the 40th anniversary of the AIDS pandemic, joins forces with UCLA Art & Global Health Center and a dozen Seattle-based people living with HIV for a moving, truth telling, photo-storytelling jam and discussion, 5 p.m., Dec. 1. Rock the Season–Virtual Concert, 7 p.m., Dec 9, features musicians from Totem Star to celebrate the season of giving and share stories about some favorite organizations that inspire action. Through Positive Eyes: Live ‘Artivist’ Storytelling, 12:30 p.m., Dec. 15, confronts the stigma and seeks to build empathy for the resilient spirit of those facing the challenges of HIV/AIDS.  

KEXP hosts on–air, in–studio performances this month (broadcast only) including: Crumb, 12 p.m., Dec 2; Roosevelt, 12 p.m., Dec. 8; Courtney Barnett ,12 p.m., Dec. 14; and Bartees Strange, 3 p.m., Dec. 16. Also, join KEXP forthe 10th annual SMooCH (Seattle Musicians for Children’s Hospital) Benefit Concert featuring Shaina Shepherd and Modest Mouse, 7:30 p.m., Dec. 11, Showbox Market.  

Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP) (IP) is open 10 a.m.–5 p.m., Thursday–Tuesday, closed on Wednesdays. Advance ticket purchasing is encouraged. Current exhibits include Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop, Heroes and Villains: The Art of the Disney Costume, Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses, Infinite Worlds of Science Fiction; Indie Game Revolution, Pearl Jam: Home and Away, Fantasy: Worlds of Myth and Magic, Scared to Death: The Thrill of Horror Film, Hendrix: Wild Blue Angel, Science Fiction + Fantasy Hall of Fame and Guitar Gallery. MoPOP’s Film Series The Comeback features Cool Runnings. 6 p.m., Dec. 11 and Kiki’s Delivery Service, 6 p.m., Dec. 18. 

Pacific Northwest Ballet presents a beloved holiday tradition, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® (IP) returning to the McCaw Hall stage, Nov. 26–Dec. 28, with its classic score, thrilling dance, resplendent costumes and scenery–and a magical story that fills the heart with cheer.  

Pacific Science Center sparks curiosity and inspires scientific learning for all ages. General public tickets are available for HOCKEY: Faster Than Ever (IP), a highly interactive exhibition exploring the science, history and culture of hockey, makes its world premiere this month at Pacific Science Center. The exhibit goes to Feb. 27, 2022.

Seattle Children’s Theatre tickets to live (IP) experiences in 2022 are now on sale, just in time for holiday gifting.Offerings include Red Riding Hood, Feb. 2–March 6, 2022; Seedfolks, March 4–20; The Best Summer Ever, March 22–April 17; Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus: the Musical, May 5–22; Watsons Go to Birmingham1963, May 3–22; and Air Play, June 1–12. Registration is also open for Holiday Break Camps.  

Seattle Opera welcomes back the Drunken Tenor to retell Charles Dickens’ time-honored holiday classic, 7:30 p.m., Dec. 10 and 4 p.m., Dec. 12 at Tagney Jones Hall, Opera Center. In true Drunken Tenor comedy opera fashion, however, things get turned upside down. Along the way, he is joined by duet partners of the past, present and future for a mix of opera, holiday favorites and much more!  

Seattle Rep’s The Winter’s Tale (V&IPF)offers hybrid film and live theatrical options. The in-person experience takes place Dec. 16–19 at Cornish Playhouse. Free tickets are available now (while supplies last). The Rep’s Public Works family of community and professional actors join together for a dazzling journey of reunion and redemption in this musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s delightful and thought–provoking tale.   

SIFF Cinema Uptown celebrates the season with beloved films that the whole family will enjoy, including masterful musicals and a Christmas Day tradition that will leave you shouting “To Life!” Check out The Muppet Christmas Carol, Dec. 8; White Christmas, Dec. 18–19; Fiddler on the Roof, Dec. 25; and Moulin Rouge! New Year’s Eve Sing-along on Dec. 31. 

Space Needle (IP) opens at 10 a.m. (closing at various times) through Dec. 17. Santa returns to the Space Needle, through Dec. 24! Sit with him in his all-new all-glass sleigh.  

The Vera Project, an all-ages nonprofit space dedicated to fostering personal and community transformation through collaborative, youth-driven engagement in music and art, resumes full activities in November including the following live shows (IP):  Seeyouspacecowboy, Dec. 7; One Step Closer,Dec. 10; Movements, Dec. 11; Craig Owens, Dec. 12; Cory Wells, Dec. 14; Comeback Kid. Dec. 16; and Koleżanka, Reverse Death, Luke Hogfoss and Don Piano, Dec. 17.  

In-person events at Seattle Center require attendee health measures such as masking, currently a state mandate, and proof of vaccination or recent negative COVID test, a King County mandate. So, be sure to check the presenter’s website or call before you go for current health and safety requirements. To learn more about virtual and in-person activities at Seattle Center this month and beyond, visit or call 206 684-7200.  

About Seattle Center  

Connect to the extraordinary at Seattle Center, an active civic, arts and family gathering place in the core of our region. More than 30 cultural, educational, sports and entertainment organizations that reside on the grounds, together with a broad range of public and community programs, create thousands of events on the 74-acre campus and attract over 12 million visitors each year. At Seattle Center, part of Uptown Arts & Cultural District and home to Climate Pledge Arena, our purpose is to create exceptional events, experiences and environments that delight and inspire the human spirit to build stronger communities. Activities at the Center generate $1.864 billion in business activity and $631 million in labor income.