Snowflake Lane: A PNW Holiday Tradition

Addie Mount, Staff Writer

If you grew up in the greater Seattle area, you’ve probably been to or heard of Snowflake Lane. Located on 227 Bellevue Way NE, (the street in between Bell Square and Lincoln Square) this holiday experience has been a large part of many people’s childhoods and family traditions. Freshman Bleu Carroz said, “I’ve gone there with my extended family almost every year as a tradition.” While Snowflake Lane seems catered to a younger audience, many older attendees still enjoy going with close friends and family. Although the experience may have seemed more magical to a young age group, the surrounding activities such as going out for a meal or doing holiday shopping make it enjoyable for the whole family. The experience typically lasts about 20 minutes and runs every night at 7:00 from Nov. 26 to Dec. 24. The event gets increasingly busier as we approach Christmas and the holiday season.

Certain adjustments have been made considering COVID-19 and the ongoing pandemic. According to The Seattle Times, “Now in its 17th year, Snowflake Lane returns from last year’s hiatus and has adapted for COVID-19. With half as many performers this year compared with a non-pandemic year, performers will be wearing masks and will not participate with audience members like in years past.” Although adjustments had to be made, According to The Seattle Times, “the same holiday cheer is expected to fill the streets each night. Visitors can also schedule photos with Santa at the Snowflake Lane Factory through Dec. 24.” In the stressful environment we live in today, a lighthearted event like this can ease some stress and remind us of better times. Sophomore Cooper Ward commented, “I like how ‘fun’ it was. It was happy and kind of goofy.” Snowflake lane is able to take many back to their childhoods and a less stressful time.

Sophomore Hayleigh Talton thinks the experience would be improved if they would add “more than just lights, if it was kind of themed. Make it more like you’re walking through the North Pole.”  The experience can feel almost repetitive sometimes, and while that can be comforting, having a different theme each year would add more excitement and variety. Carroz commented that “sanitizing stations, or food and drink, possibly to the actual parade. I think it would be a nice break from all the activity to have an occasional safe space.” With the noise and the usual crowd, Snowflake Lane can feel overwhelming at times.

In addition to the nightly parade, The Bellevue Collection recorded their annual tree lighting which was virtual this year on the Snowflake Lane website so you can watch it any time from the comfort of your home.