With travel, parties, feasting, and gift-giving, the holidays take a toll on our budgets. Save some money and check out these five great events in Spokane, all family friendly and all free or cheap.
Take a Carriage Ride: Climb aboard a horse-drawn carriage and cruise through festive downtown Spokane or Coeur d’Alene. Sponsored by Spokane Teachers Credit Union, Downtown Spokane, and the Coeur d’Alene Downtown Association, these rides are free. In Spokane, meet at the corner of Wall and Main, 3:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Fridays, noon to 5:00 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through December 22, and noon to 3:00 p.m. December 24. In Coeur d’Alene, catch a carriage at First and Sherman 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturdays through December 21.
Walk through a Winter Wonderland: Take a hay ride, see Santa Claus, stroll across the river on an illuminated swinging bridge, and drink hot chocolate around camp fires at Riverside State Park’s Winter Wonderland. The Bowl and Pitcher area will be decorated with festive lights to get everyone into the holiday spirit, and cocoa and cookies will be for sale. This is a fundraiser for the Riverside State Park Foundation. Admission is $5; kids 3 and under are free. No Discover Pass is required for parking for this event. Times are 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., December 12–14 at the Bowl and Pitcher Area, 4427 N. Aubrey L White Parkway.
The Animals’ Santa Reading at the Bing: Best-selling author Jan Brett will read her book The Animal’s Santa, an original tale about an adorable group of forest animals (including
rabbits, a porcupine, ravens, squirrels, and an arctic fox) that try to discover the mystery behind treasures left for them each and every Christmas. Free autographed posters are available for the first 100 families attending. Bring your camera as there will be plenty of photo opportunities with Hedgie the hedgehog and Brett’s decorated tour bus. There is a $5 requested donation for adults, which goes to the Friends of the Bing. Kids are free. This event is December 14, 5:00 p.m., at the Bing Crosby Theater at 901 W. Sprague.
Spokane Winter Glow Spectacular: Riverfront Park is decked out for the holidays, with over 25 lighted displays, including a lighted animal zoo. The lights go on at 5:00 p.m. nightly. Bring a thermos of hot cocoa and stroll through the beautiful park on the Spokane River. This event is free.
Christmas Tree Elegance: Every year, local businesses create elaborate, beautiful Christmas trees surrounded by generous gifts valued at $5,000 to support the Spokane Symphony. You can view twelve of the trees in the historic Davenport Hotel at 10 S. Post Street, which is in its full holiday splendor. Six trees are on display in the second floor corridor at River Park Square at 808 W. Main Ave. Trees will be on display through December 14. Viewing the trees is free; raffle tickets are available for $1 for a chance to win your favorite tree and present package.