By Stefanie Donahue
Blaine’s annual Holiday Harbor Lights festival is just around the corner and this year organizers are planning a slew of events and activities that are sure to get locals in the holiday spirit.
The fun begins on Friday, December 1 with a homemade arts and crafts Christmas bazaar at 674 Peace Portal Drive next to the Peace Arch City Cafe; doors will be open from 5 to 7 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, December 2. Also starting on Friday is a book sale at the Blaine Public Library, 610 3rd Street, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
It wouldn’t be the Holiday Harbor Lights Festival without the “land of sweets” Christmas village display at the G Street plaza; during the event, passersby are encouraged to snap a photo of the artful scene. On Friday and Saturday, musical performers will set the stage at the H Street Plaza and at the arts and crafts Christmas bazaar to fill the air with holiday cheer.
On Saturday, the following bands are slated to play at the arts and crafts Christmas bazaar: Allie Ryser from 11 a.m. to noon, Blaine Ukulele from noon to 1 p.m., Senior Center Jam Band from 1 to 2 p.m., Matt Audette with country Christmas music from 2 to 3 p.m., Mike Bonson with holiday jazz music from 3 to 4 p.m. and Lord Knapp from 5 to 6 p.m. The Blaine school choir and band will play at the H Street Plaza from 4 to 5 p.m. on Saturday.
Starting at 3 p.m. on Saturday, all are invited to participate in the sixth annual Holiday Lights Dash, a 1.5-mile obstacle course, which begins in H Street Plaza and winds through H Street and Peace Portal Drive. Event sponsors include the Blaine Chamber of Commerce, Blaine-Birch Bay Park and Recreation District 2 and Let’s Move Blaine.
Registration for the Holiday Lights Dash opens the day of the event and is open to all ages; it costs $10 for adults, $5 for individuals under age 18 and $30 for families with up to five-members. All participants receive a souvenir, healthy refreshments and the first 100 finishers take home a medal. All types of holiday attire – including Santa hats, sleigh bells – are encouraged.
Saturday evening, guests are encouraged to stop by the community tree lighting at 4:30 p.m. at the H Street Plaza – Santa and Mrs. Claus will arrive by horse and trolley at 5 p.m. Later, the pair will head to the Blaine Pizza Factory, 738 Peace Portal Drive, offering free candy canes, hot cocoa and a chance for
families to take photos.
From 5 to 7 p.m. on Saturday, the Blaine Chamber of Commerce will sponsor a free horse-drawn trolley ride through downtown. Between 6 and 7 p.m., a dazzling display of boats decorated in lights will appear along the Blaine harbor visitor dock.
To learn more about Blaine’s annual Holiday Harbor Lights Festival, visit blaineholidayharborlights.com or call 360/332-4544.