It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Lights are twinkling and garland is strung in every window. While many adults are mesmerized by the beauty of the holiday season, kids look past all of that. You see, many children are on a mission to encounter jolly old St. Nick. They have a list and, in order to be heard, they are on the lookout for Santa Claus. If your child is looking for some face time with the man in red, I have a list of places all over Thurston County, all season long to do just that!
Let’s start with the obvious, Capital Mall. Santa is set up for photos in the Forever 21 court through December 24. This is a great option if you are okay with spending a few bucks for nice photos and want to get some much-needed shopping done. This year, Capital Mall is offering a Santa Fast Pass that lets you set up a day, time, and photo package before leaving your house. It’s a great way to skip the long lines and know the pricing upfront.
If you are looking to spend a little less, be sure to check out the Providence Christmas Forest. On Saturday, December 3, the annual fundraiser will be hosting Kids’ Day. Santa will be available for a visit, and the Hands On Children’s Museum will host holiday activities. Local musicians will also be on hand to enhance this community tradition with the sounds of the season. Admission includes entry to the tinsel topped trees at the low price of $6 for adults and $1 for children.
If you’d rather go shopping for the great outdoors, look no further than the super store known as Cabela’s. Along with the always entertaining, enormous aquarium, kids will go crazy for the Santa photos. Beginning at 10:00 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays on December 3, 4, 10 and 11, children and their families can line up for free photos.
Looking for a chance to have your furry family members meet with Santa? The annual Adopt-a-Pet Photos with Santa fundraiser takes place December 3 from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. A professional photographer and refreshments will be available for a donation of five to fifteen dollars. Reservations are encouraged to guarantee a photo time, but walk-ins are welcome.
On December 10 from 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m., head over to Tumwater City Hall and Fire Station for the annual Tumwater Christmas Tree Lighting Festival. Along with St. Nick, local choirs, bands, vendors and even Miss Thurston County will be on hand. This is a completely free, fun activity for the whole family to enjoy.
As the days count down to single digits before Christmas Eve, Santa does become harder to find, but the Lacey Fire Department is helping parents out with a real time Santa tracker. The Lacey Fire Department will be at the City of Lacey Parade of Lights on December 5 beginning at 5:30 p.m. Santa shows up at 6:45 p.m. For the complete Lacey Fire Department Santamobile, click here.
So, head out across Thurston County to spot Santa before he takes flight on Christmas Eve!