Each year, Seattle Center welcomes the winter season with five-weeks of spirited entertainment and inspired, child-friendly diversions. Visitors to Seattle Center Winterfest, Nov. 28 – Dec. 31, will behold a Seattle Center Armory filled with festive decoration, a main stage awash in live music, comedy and dance, and an enchanting, otherworld Winter Train & Village. The Winterfest Ice Rink returns, along with Saturday ice sculpting, trees drenched in sparkling lights, and over 150 Student Showcases.
Following is a full list of Winterfest activities:
Winterfest Ice Rink: Sunday-Thursday, 11 am-8 pm; Friday and Saturday 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Nov. 28 – Jan. 4, 2015, Fisher Pavilion. Closed at 4 p.m., Dec. 24; closed, Dec. 25; open until 11:30 pm, Dec. 31. Glide into the season with the greatest of ease. For novice or Olympiad, the Winterfest Ice Rink offers fun for all. $7 for adults, $5 for children ages 6-12, $2 children ages 5 and under, includes skate rental. Cash only. Seattle Center Winterfest.
Winter Train & Village: 10 am-6 pm daily, Nov. 28 – Dec. 31, Seattle Center Armory. A Winterfest crowd favorite, a sprawling display exploring an enchanting turn-of-the-century village and train. Take a turn “conducting” the model train between 10:30am-12pm, 1pm-2:30pm, and 3:30pm-5:30pm daily. $2 suggested donation. Seattle Center Winterfest.
Winterfest Art Installations: Nov. 28 – Jan. 4, 2015, Seattle Center Grounds, free. The installations, by artists Celeste Cooning, Elizabeth Gahan, Robb Kunz, Erin Shafkind, and Will Gundy, evoke attention through moments of surprise, contemplation, beauty, and humor, enlivening the visitor experience by introducing an element of the unexpected into the Seattle Center environment. These small-scale temporary artworks deal with illumination and light that complement our Winterfest activities. www.artbeat.seattle.gov/2014/10/27/temporary-art-at-winterfest-2014.
Filipino Youth Activities Drill Team: 11 am-12 pm, Friday, Nov. 28, Seattle Center Armory, free. The Mandayan Marchers, Princessa Drill Team, and the Cumbanchero Percussioners comprise the Drill Team. Created in 1959, the team currently sports 60 kids, ages six to 19, whose movements and formations, performed to music strongly inspired by Latin, Muslim, and modern beats, are filled with precision and timing. www.facebook.com/pages/FYA-Drill-Team/134245983264202?sk=info.
Keith Highlanders Pipe Band: 2 pm-3 pm, Friday, Nov. 28, Seattle Center Armory, free. Dedicated to heightening the awareness of traditional Scottish piping, drumming, and dancing in the Pacific Northwest, the Keith Highlanders Pipe Band has a long history of delighting the Seattle community with its resonant and enduring sounds. Formed in 1952, it is the official pipe band of the Clan Keith (a rare designation outside Scotland), performing internationally and throughout the Northwest. www.khpb.org.
Winterfest Student Showcases: Nov. 29 – 30, varied times, Seattle Center Armory, free. Seattle Center Student Showcases fill the Seattle Center Armory Atrium with the sounds and sights of the season as they offer public and private schools and youth groups the opportunity to share their artistic accomplishments with family, friends, and the public. Over 150 performances and 5,864 student performers). Check online at: Seattle Center Winterfest for a full schedule of performances.
Hot Dog USA: 11 am-12 pm, Saturday, Nov. 29, Seattle Center Armory, free. The Hot Dog USA Jump Rope Team inspires, motivates, and educates people of all ages, while fostering local, regional, national, and international jump rope competitions, workshops, and performances. Hot Dog USA.
Ice Sculpting: 12 pm-2 pm, Saturdays, Nov. 29 and Dec. 6, 13, 20, and 27, Fisher Apron, free. Artistry and ice unite in a glorious and temporal expression of the season. Watch internationally acclaimed, award-winning artists at work as they create seasonal sculptures — or stop by later to see the glistening result. Each Saturday an ice master will carve a different design. Seattle Center Winterfest.
The Dickens Carolers: 12:30 pm-1:30 pm, Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 29 and 30, Seattle Center Armory, free. The famed quartet of Victorian costumed carolers sings your favorite seasonal music in perfect four-part harmony. You’re sure to feel the holiday spirit as you listen to their highly entertaining renderings of traditional and contemporary holiday favorites. Dickens Carolers.
The Cabiri and Radost Present Carpathian Dawn: 2 pm-3 pm, Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 29 – 30, Seattle Center Armory, free. The Cabiri preserves the mythologies of cultures that have passed into antiquity through physical theater, dance, aerial arts, stilts, puppetry, and just a bit of fairy dust. The performers will transport you into worlds outside of time. Join as they travel into misty nights beneath the waxing crescent moon to mysterious places where anything is possible. The Cabiri.
Zaniac Comedy Show: 11 am-12 pm, Sunday, Nov. 30, Seattle Center Armory, free. This two-time Guinness World Record holder, voted Seattle’s Funniest Prop Comic, has appeared on prime-time TV in hit shows like NBC’s “America’s Got Talent!” and “Last Comic Standing.” Audiences everywhere freak out — in a good way — when they see Alex perform. Alex Zerbe.
Northwest Boychoir Apprentices: 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 6, Seattle Center Armory, free. These young apprentice singers, ages 7 – 11, maintain a busy performance schedule, regularly singing for the Northwest Film Forum’s Holiday High Notes, the Christmas Ships, and numerous other events. They’ve performed in holiday concerts and benefits for Seattle Symphony, Seattle Children’s Hospital, and the Snowman Foundation at Benaroya Hall. www.nwchoirs.org.
Bailadores de Bronce: 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 7, Seattle Center Armory, free. Introducing the most positive aspects of the Mexican culture to the broader community, the Bailadores break down cultural barriers and build bridges as they teach and perform Mexican folkloric dances. The high energy and enthusiasm of the dancers transcends the stage, while their beautiful costumes convey the richness of their culture. www.bailadoresdebronce.org.
SANCA: 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 13, Seattle Center Armory, free. SANCA’s Cirrus Circus Company creates and performs original acts in aerial arts, juggling, tightwire, clowning, unicycle and acrobatics. Come see these talented kids as they delight their audience on the Seattle Center Armory stage. SANCA Seattle.
Garfield Jazz Band: 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 14, Seattle Center Armory, free. Under the brilliant leadership of Clarence Acox, Garfield High School brings to young people the jazz traditions of nation’s great big bands. A frequent participant in the highly competitive Essentially Ellington National Jazz Band Competition and Festival at Lincoln Center in New York City, the Garfield Jazz program has nurtured instrumentalists who have gone on to study at leading music schools throughout the country. Garfield Jazz Band.
Seattle’s Best Damn Happy Hour: 5 p.m.-8 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 18, Seattle Center Armory, free entry. Outstanding food and drink at highly desirable prices, music, games and prizes attract a broad happy hour following to Seattle Center Armory the third Thursday of every month. Join them for giant Jenga, board games, giant Scrabble, darts and more! 21+. www.seattlecenter.com/happyhour.
The Mood Swings: 12:30 pm-1:30 pm, Saturday, Dec. 20, Seattle Center Armory, free. Aiming to inspire a love of jazz in the community and a culture of camaraderie and empowerment among its female musicians of all ages, the six female founding members have grown the talented group into a true big band, with hundreds of tunes to its repertoire, regularly presenting high-energy, fun-filled performances throughout the Northwest. The Mood Swings.
Captain Smartypants and Sensible Shoes: 12:30 pm-1:30 pm, Sunday, Dec. 21, Seattle Center Armory, free. Captain Smartypants tours the Pacific Northwest as the ambassadors of Seattle Men’s Chorus. Gaiety abounds as this homosexual vocal comedy group thrills, delights and, at times, alarms audiences from Washington D.C. to San Francisco. Sensible Shoes, a pop and vocal jazz group and outreach ensemble of Seattle Women’s Chorus, balances great vocal delivery with fun, innovative staging. www.flyinghouse.org.
Menorah Lighting Ceremony: 6 p.m.-7 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 21, Seattle Center Armory, free. Chabad of Seattle celebrates Chanukah with a Menorah Lighting ceremony, music, service and the spirit of the season. www.chabadofseattle.org.
Vela Luka Croatian Dance Ensemble: 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 27, Seattle Center Armory, free. Experience the delight and exhilaration of a live performance of Vela Luka and Ruže Dalmatinke, adorned in vibrant costumes, as they share Slavic holiday traditions through exuberant dance, joyous melodies and ancient songs. Vela Luka.
Klez Kidz: 12:30 pm-1:30 pm, Sunday, Dec. 28, Seattle Center Armory, free. This 40-piece ensemble brings to life a multiplicty of Jewish music and mirth from around the world. Listen and you’ll hear the wail of the clarinet in rousing song, see bottles being balanced on the heads of dancers, and maybe even learn some new dance steps yourself! Klez Kids.
New Year’s Eve Celebration with THE NINES: 8 pm-11:45 pm, Wednesday, Dec. 31, Seattle Center Armory, free. This super fun, five-piece band takes you through the sounds of the 1970‘s to today’s greatest hits including Studio 54 funk, synth pop, and party rock. With world class male and female lead vocals, THE NINES will have you dancing the night away as you await the spectacular midnight fireworks just outside the Armory doors! Love The NINES.
Seattle Center Winterfest, produced by Seattle Center, presents spirited programming for children, families and friends in search of entertaining and enriching activities during this festive time of year. For more information, visit Seattle Center or call 206 684-7200.