Local Treasures with Pia: Downtown Spokane Holiday Fun

The holiday season looks a little different because of COVID restrictions, but here is the good news: Santa IS coming to River Park Square like he always does. Here’s the not so good news: you can’t sit in his lap and you have to make an online appointment with the jolly old fella before you put on your holiday best and head down to get your picture taken.

There are lots of fun and safe things to do in Downtown Spokane, which kicked off the holiday season by lighting the city Christmas tree on November 27. That was also the official opening of the Numerica Lights Up the Night Christmas tree walk, which features 40 lit and decorated trees from local community organizations set up along a walk in Riverfront Park. The free tree walk remains up through January 3.

Wheatland Bank free Horse and Carriage Rides run Friday, Saturday and Sunday through December 24 – all you have to do is sign up in advance. Pickup is at Visit Spokane’s Visitors Center next to the Rotary Fountain in Riverfront Park, and the rides go into the park this year.

As something new, a Winter Farmer’s Market will be held every Wednesday from 3-7 p.m. in the U.S. Pavilion. Organized in partnership with the Fairwood Farmer’s Market the opening day is December 2, and the market will continue weekly through January 27. Expect approximately 20 vendors and two food trucks set up on the Pavilion Central Plaza and lobby. Farmer’s market COVID safety protocols apply, so please wear a face mask.

Another downtown outdoor experience that’s been a big hit since its unveiling in 2018, is the Crescent Windows, which are installed in the big windows on the south side of the Davenport Grand Hotel. Each window features vintage animatronic figures that first graced the windows of the legendary, yet long gone, Crescent department store. The Downtown Spokane Partnership was behind the revival, repair and reinstallation of the window displays which feature dancing ballerinas and scenes from Santa’s workshop.

Please don’t forget that most of the businesses remain open for shopping – please follow directions to wear a face mask and sanitize your hands - and your favorite coffee place is more than happy to make you a latte. If you plan your day just right you can leave downtown with a hot takeout meal from one of your favorite restaurants – just call ahead and place your order, so it’s ready for pickup when you need it.

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