Coastal Christmas Celebrations & Shopping

The holiday magic is in the air and the coastal community of Anacortes is a winter escape without the stress of overcrowded terminals.

As the chill winds blow in from the west taking away the last bundles of the crisp fall leaves, the anticipation of the 2021 holiday season begins to grow across the Puget Sound. After a long year plugging away in the at-home office and keeping up with the kids’ ever-growing schedules, break away from the everyday hustle and bustle to truly encapsulate the holiday spirit. The coastal community of Anacortes is a holiday escape without the stress of overcrowded terminals. As simple as catching the ferry or making the 90-minute drive up north, this travel time gives the entire family a moment to listen to some classic carols or draft out letters to Santa together. The holiday magic is in the air, visit Anacortes this winter to truly experience it.

Kick off the joyous season by attending the Anacortes Coastal Christmas tree lighting on December 3rd at 6p. Decked out from trunk to treetop in amusing nautical figurines like crab pots, buoys, boats and so much more, this 26-foot tall tree can easily bring a smile to any Grinch’s face. The event includes live merry music, hot cocoa to warm the soul, and even a visit from Santa Claus himself. This is the perfect opportunity for the kids to get their Christmas wishes into Santa before the holiday rush. Unable to make the lighting? No need to worry, the coastal Christmas tree will stay lit all season in the city while you’re shopping along the local stores as you tick each name off your gift list.

Extend your family trip through the weekend and attend the jolly Walk with Santa parade on the 4th at 11a. With performances and appearances of local Anacortes groups, this community march is a must-see as it treks all throughout the historic downtown. The local festivities and pride of the community are a sight to be seen.

Anacortes has many local shops to offer. These businesses are great to keep in mind when looking to shop local, especially with the holidays right around the corner.

One business, in particular, is the Watermark Book Company. Watermark Book Company opened its doors in November of 1989. Brandy Bowen purchased Watermark from its original owners just four years ago but has kept its local feel. “We always have felt strongly about doing our best to give back to the Anacortes community,” Brandy said. Watermark has two-anniversary celebrations each year, one in November and the other in April. Black Friday and Small Business Saturday (the day after Black Friday) are two additional times throughout the year they celebrate and give back to the community. The Black Friday and Small Business Saturday events are simple, yet offer huge savings – earn 20% off when you pay with cash or check. One other way they give back to the community, complimentary gift wrapping! So, make sure to check out Watermark Book Company during your next trip to Anacortes and keep up to date with Watermark by signing up for their newsletter.

Another local Anacortes business to check out when holiday shopping is Lil Tugs Children’s Boutique. In business for about 5 and a half years, Lil Tugs has just the right items to offer for the little ones in your life. They carry children’s clothing, infant thru size 10, with “fun, new styles arriving every day” owner Michele DeCarlo says. They even feature holiday attire for kids. But Lil Tugs doesn’t stop at just clothing. They also carry toys, games, teething accessories, bibs, blankets, and more – everything you need to shop for your family, children, friends, and grandchildren. Bunnies by the Bay is a popular stuffed animal brand Lil Tugs carries, a brand local to Anacortes. Lil Tugs does all they can to create a sense of community. “Babies are born 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I’ve had people run in from the hospital” Michele says. To that end, we strive to stay open seven days a week as well. Check out their website to see all they have to offer! With gift wrapping offered, Lil Tugs is a great place to shop for the holiday season.

The up-and-coming festivities this season to Anacortes will keep the entire family’s holiday cheer magical. Stay up-to-date on all holiday occasions happening around Anacortes by following their events calendar on their new site here. You can check on ferry times, business hours of local shops, and even look for a place to stay during your weekend getaway on Anacortes is a world away, yet just a quick trip from Seattle. Great to visit as a family this season!