Your How-To Guide to a Happy Mother’s Day

Need ideas for a special Mother’s Day outing? Seattle Parks and Recreation has you covered. We have a mix of free and low-cost activities, indoor and outdoor, active restive. Check out a sampling of events and activities throughout the city where you can show mom just how much you appreciate her.

Active moms

Mother and daughter paddle boarding on Green Lake.


Bring mom to Green Lake and get your paddle on
Take a few laps around the lake or rent a kayak or paddle boat and float across. We’ve heard the park is in full-fledged duckling season, so whether you’re walking or boating, prepare for cuteness overload. When you’re finished at the park, grab a meal at one of the many restaurants surrounding the loop like Green Lake Bar and Grill, Duke’s Chowder House, Spud Fish and Chips or Blue Water Bistro.

Bring mom for a run in Magnuson Park and support homeless women and children
At 9 a.m. on Sunday, May 11, Magnuson Park is hosting the Run Like a Mother 5K race (Kids 1-mile race at 8:30 a.m.). The course is flat and offers views of Mt. Rainier and Lake Washington. There will be a post-race party complete with food and activities for the entire family. Registration for the 5K is $45, but participants have the option to register as a Mary’s Place Charity Entry for $100 and have 100 percent of their fees benefit Mary’s Place, a nonprofit that supports homeless mothers and their children.

Moms who love gardens and gardening

A picnic in Parsons Gardens in Queen Anne.


Bring mom to Queen Anne for a leisurely stroll (and ice cream!)
Queen Anne boasts some of the city’s most beautiful viewpoints and gardens. Take mom on a self-guided tour along 7th Ave. W and W Highland Drive and make stops in Kerry Park, Parsons Gardens and Marshall Park. When you’re finished, refuel at Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream Shop or Top Pot Doughnuts, both conveniently located on W Galer St.

Bring mom to a free weekend walk at the Washington Park Arboretum
The arboretum is offering a free tour of flowering plants from 1-2:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 11. The guide will teach visitors about plants through fun flower dissections and pollination discussions.

Bring mom to a spring plant sale at Volunteer Park Conservatory
Volunteer Park Conservatory is hosting its biggest annual plant sale from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. on Saturday, May 10. The sale will feature a wide variety of exotic orchids, rare cacti and tropical house plants.  If mom isn’t into gardening, visit the Bromeliad House from noon-3p.m. on Sunday, May 11, and make a small personalized bouquet to thank her for all she does. The suggested donation for the bouquet event is $8.

Nature loving moms

Camp Long in West Seattle


Bring mom to a little cabin in the woods (sort of)
West Seattle’s Camp Long is one of the city’s best kept secrets. Escape the hustle and bustle of urban living without having to travel outside of Seattle. Camp Long features hiking trails, log cabins for rent and most importantly, peace and quiet.

Bring mom to a Bird Tour in Discovery Park
This year Mother’s Day coincides with International Migratory Bird Day. Celebrate both occasions with a guided tour in Discovery Park from 7-9 a.m. on Saturday, May 10. You and mom can join experienced guides who will lead you through the park’s varied habitats to welcome home migrants.  The event is $3 per person and wraps up just in time for brunch in Magnolia!

Bring mom to Jefferson Park for a picnic
Jefferson Park is our sixth largest park and offers incredible views of the Duwamish River, city skyline and the Olympic Mountains. Pack a picnic and spend the afternoon kicking back in the grass or head to the tennis courts after lunch for a friendly match.

The community-minded mom

Yesler Community Center’s Mother’s Day Pancake Breakfast.


Bring mom to a Mother’s Day Pancake Breakfast at Yesler Community Center
Seattle Parks and Recreation would like to serve mom up some pancakes and give her a pat on the back. From 10 a.m.-noon on Saturday, May 10, bring the family to Yesler Community Center for a free pancake breakfast and door prizes.

Bring mom to an Annual Mother’s Day Event at Garfield Community Center
Visit Garfield Community Center 1-3 p.m. on Saturday, May 10, for food, live entertainment, a raffle and Mother’s Day affirmations.

A few parting words…

Momma always said, “Leave the park cleaner than you found it”
If you’re planning to celebrate mom this weekend in a park, we want to make sure she is able to enjoy a clean, safe environment. This year, Mother’s Day falls before our seasonal crews are hired for the summer. With so many families in the parks this weekend, waste and recycling bins can fill and overflow quickly. Please help prevent bin overflow by packing out your trash and recyclables.

Thank you for your support of Seattle Parks!