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Celebrate the Season: Six Free Holiday Activities Along Gig Harbor's Waterfront

You won’t have to travel far this year to find holiday cheer! This December there are so many fun and festive activities you and your family can do, and the best part is, they are all completely free.


In this article we are breaking down SIX free family-friendly holiday activities happening in the waterfront district in Gig Harbor.


Holiday Lights & Photo Ops:

Kick off the holiday season with a stroll along the waterfront as it transforms into a winter wonderland of magical photo light displays and picture opportunities, both day and night. Various parks and areas along the harbor (including the largest display at Donkey Creek Park) will be adorned with festive decorations, providing the perfect backdrop for memorable holiday photos. Gather your loved ones and capture the magic of the season while enjoying the beautiful views of the harbor. For locations and details, click here. Photos displays are open to the public and will be available through Jan 1st.


Gnome Hunt:

Embark on a fun-filled, free gnome hunt adventure with family and friends. You can find 38 Gnomes hidden among 19 participating businesses. Download the FREE gnome hunt

passport and map here or pick up a copy at any participating business and set off on a quest to find these charming little guys. It's a delightful way to explore the town, and

who knows, you might even uncover some hidden gems along the way. Once you find at least 15 Gnomes, don’t forget to upload your Gnome Hunt Passport here because one lucky person will win a Gnome Hunt Basket, valued at $300! The Gnome Hunt runs Dec 1-31st 2023.


Holiday Coloring Contest:

Calling all coloring enthusiasts (under the age of 16)! Engage your creativity and participate in the holiday coloring contest. You can either download a copy of the coloring sheet here or pick one up at local downtown restaurants and some retail locations. A huge thank you to local artist Linda Foster who created our very special Maritime themed holiday coloring sheet this year. It's a fantastic way for kids to showcase their artistic talents and spread holiday cheer. Upload your finished coloring sheet here for a chance to win a Java & Clay gift card! The coloring contest runs Dec 1-31st 2023.


Free Photos with Santa at Donkey Creek Park on Dec 9th, 10th, 16th and 17th:

Capture the joy and excitement of the season with free photos with Santa at Holiday Village at Donkey Creek Park. Bring the whole family for a magical encounter with the man in red.


Don't forget to share your holiday wish list and receive a small token of festive cheer. It's a heartwarming experience that will leave you with cherished memories and a sprinkle of holiday magic. Santa will be headed to town on Dec 9th, 10th, 16th and 17th from 12-3pm. Click here to learn more.


Don’t forget to wear your rain boots and bring a rain jacket! While you’re waiting in line for Santa you can take advantage of the family photo and light displays at Donkey Creek Park! A huge thank you to The Rotary Club of Gig Harbor, The Greater Gig Harbor Foundation, Food Backpacks 4 Kids and the Harbor History Museum for hosting Santa and friends!


Lighted Boat Parade:

Experience a Gig Harbor holiday tradition and the enchantment of the season as boats with beautiful holiday lights parade through the harbor on Dec 9th. The annual Lighted Boat Parade is a must-not-miss activity that captivates both young and old. Find a cozy spot along the waterfront, either at one of the public viewing areas or cozy up inside restaurants or shops along the waterfront to view the parade. More details can be found by clicking here.


Lighted Car Parade:

Keep the festive momentum going with the Lighted Car Parade on Dec 16th. Decked out in holiday lights and decorations, a procession of cars will wind its way from uptown through the waterfront district in Gig Harbor, spreading joy and merriment. Grab a curbside seat, bundle up in warm blankets, and delight in the creativity and holiday spirit showcased by the festive car parade. More details can be found by clicking here.



Gig Harbor's waterfront is the perfect setting for a month-long celebration of the holiday season. From twinkling lights and gnome hunts to festive parades and free photos with Santa, these six FREE activities offer a mix of fun and magic for everyone. We invite you to gather your loved ones, explore the waterfront, and make lasting memories in Gig Harbor this December. To view all the activities click here.

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