Tacoma Events in January: The Top 48 Things To Do This Month

The Peking Acrobats, Night Markets, a Neil Diamond Tribute Band, and More Ways to Enjoy January
by Kevin Yeoman
January 7, 2020
Neil Diamond tribute band, Super Diamond, comes to Tacoma in January 2020. (SARA ALIZE CROSS)

Got the January blahs now that the holidays are over? We're here to help. This month, there are plenty of events to keep you busy in Tacoma, wherever your interests lie. We've collected the biggest and best options below, ranging from Tacoma's Vision 2020 MLK Day celebration to the Peking Acrobats to Excision: The Thunderdome. You can also find a full list of Tacoma events this month on our comprehensive Tacoma events calendar.


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JANUARY 7

READINGS & TALKS

McMenamins Elks Temple History Pub: Whiskey, Mixologists and the Pacific Northwest
Cocktail historian Renee Cebula will regale attendees with tales of how and what people drank as pre-20th century American drinking traditions evolved and moved west. 

JANUARY 9

COMMUNITY

January Green Drinks
The City of Tacoma’s Office of Environmental Policy and Sustainability hosts an evening event intended to get residents engaged and excited about making the city a more sustainable and vibrant place to live. 

JANUARY 9 & 23

PERFORMANCE

Murder Mystery Dinner in Tacoma
Put your detective skills to the test in a captivating mystery with more twists than an M. Night Shyamalan movie (that's a lot). Participants will have an opportunity to scrutinize clues and interact with suspects over a three-course meal, all to bring the playacting wrongdoer to justice. 

JANUARY 10, 18, 24 & 31

SPORTS & RECREATION

Tacoma Stars 2019-2020 Home Games
The Tacoma Stars will face off against the likes of the California Express, Ontario Fury, Monterrey Flash, and the Harrisburg Heat. Get your soccer fix while you stay out of the rain at these indoor sporting events.

JANUARY 10

SPORTS & RECREATION

Monster Jam
The action-packed motorsports show Monster Jam will return to Tacoma. Ooh and ahh as trucks fly and flip through the air.

JANUARY 11

COMMUNITY

Psychic Fair
Psychic energy will abound as Meeker Mansion plays host to everything from healers to fortune-tellers. Entry fees help fund efforts to continue the mansion's restorations. 

FOOD & DRINK

Porterpalooza 2020
Help pass the dark days of the Pacific Northwest winter with some equally dark beers at this event celebrating the porter. Soak up the beer with some quality eats from Boss Mama's Kitchen and go home with a commemorative beer glass. 

GEEK

Magical Unicorn Tea Party
Come celebrate mythical horned ponies and sip traditional tea at this catered event for all ages. Don your best fantasy costume or come as you are (horns will be provided for those without fancy threads).

PARTIES & NIGHTLIFE

Sip, Eat, Skate, & Play!
Come relive your childhood or experience the joys of an eight-wheeled bygone era in this adults-only skate jam, featuring tunes spun by DJ Selectah Slam, an enormous arcade, and all the buffalo wings, pizza, and (adult) beverages you crave. 

JANUARY 12

MUSIC

Mini Maestros — Fiddler On the Hoof
This informal, kid-friendly concert will feature a variety of orchestral pieces including Rossini’s William Tell Overture (the Lone Ranger theme), Home on the Range, and more. Parents and kids are encouraged to come dressed in western gear. 

JANUARY 13

MUSIC

Champagne Sunday
Husband-and-wife duo Jared and Jessi Fredeen have been entertaining audiences nationwide with seven albums of original material to their credit. Their unique sound will be joined by Sue Quigley and Sheryl Wiser in this raucous early 2020 show. 

JANUARY 14

COMMUNITY

Grit City Think & Drink
Enjoy a round of drinks as the discussion centers on advocacy for clean water and a healthy habitat in the Puget Sound and the various communities that rely on it. 

JANUARY 15 & 19

VISUAL ART

Visiting Artist James Carpenter
The renowned artist and architect, whose work includes the Museum at the Gateway Arch in St. Louis and the new 7 World Trade Center building in New York City, will share his insights on the use of experiential light in urban architecture and landscapes. 

JANUARY 16

READINGS & TALKS

Scholarly Selections: Skansie Shipbuilding Company
University of Washington Tacoma alum Nathan Patrick will present his research on the Skansie Shipbuilding Company. The talk traces the family's history from when they first settled in Gig Harbor to when their company was producing over 200 wooden sailing vessels. 

JANUARY 16-17

COMEDY

Christopher Titus
The stand-up comedian and actor brings his "hard funny" routine to the stage where he takes aim at everything from current events to his own family. 

JANUARY 16-19

OUTDOORS

Tacoma RV Show
Whether you call them land yachts, motorhomes, or RVs, you'll find something to suit your needs and built to make life on the road—or just a weekend in the woods—a bit more comfortable. 

JANUARY 18

FOOD & DRINK

Heritage Skills Workshops — Butchering & Curing
It may not be an Arby's, but this butchering and curing workshop still has the meats. Learn to reduce waste through traditional butchering methods focused on making bacon, prosciutto, and guanciale (jowl bacon). It's a celebration of meat candy, basically. 

SPORTS & RECREATION

Dockyard Derby Dames: Home Team Championships
The Trampires take on the Grunge City Rollers, while the Marauding Mollys do battle with the Femme Fianna to see who goes home with the championship trophy. 

COMMUNITY

Night Tour of the Armory
Amateur ghost hunters and history buffs will gather for a spooky mid-winter evening for an hour-long tour of Tacoma's armory building. Visitors will explore the balcony to the basement, and all the winding hallways in between, in search of supernatural guests and a glimpse of Tacoma's history. 

EXPOS

Great Train Show
Train enthusiasts, modelers, hobbyists, and those who just want to appreciate some miniature craftsmanship can attend this coast-to-coast model train show. There'll be tons of vendors on hand offering trains and other model accessories for sale.

The Pacific NW Reptile & Exotic Animal Show
Hundreds of scaly, cold-blooded creatures will be on display and for sale at the largest show of its kind in the Pacific Northwest. The show will also have educational displays and events geared toward teaching novice reptile owners how to care for their new friends. 

FILM

The Princess Bride - Quote Friendly
Quote along with Rob Reiner's 1987 fantasy-romance classic at this participation-friendly event. Cosplay is encouraged and there'll even be inflatable swords available (until they run out) for in-aisle duels. 

JANUARY 19

COMMUNITY

Civil Rights Legacy Tour
This live performance of Get on the Bus encourages attendees to think critically about civic engagement and American identity while considering the lessons of the Civil Rights Movement. 

MUSIC

22nd Annual Sounds of Brass Concert
John Falskow conducts the 2020 edition of this annual brass concert, featuring many talented musicians who actively perform throughout the Pacific Northwest. 

JANUARY 20

MLK DAY

Community March for MLK
This community march begins at Bates Downtown campus and will work its way to the Greater Tacoma Convention Center for the city's Martin Luther King Jr. event. 

Vision 2020
Celebrate the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King with this free event that includes a community outreach fair and will be televised on TV Tacoma. 

JANUARY 22-26

EXPOS

Washington Sportsman Show
Now in its 33rd year, the show has grown to support the Pacific Northwest outdoors and recreation enthusiasts with more than 500 companies on hand to participate, including Danner, Garmin, Gerber, and more. 

JANUARY 23

EXPOS

Tacoma Home + Garden Show
Make your home and garden the envy of the neighborhood with help from top landscape professionals from Father Nature Landscapes of Tacoma, Inc., Olympic Landscape, and Nature Perfect Landscape and Design. Garden experts Ciscoe Morris, Marianne Binetti, and Sue Goetz will also be on hand to offer advice on improving your home's garden. 

FOOD & DRINK

Whiskey of the World Dinner
Enjoy a four-course meal (with dessert) while sampling whiskeys from around the world. Each dish on the menu is crafted by McMenamins's executive chef, and designed to be perfectly paired with these unique distilled drinks. 

MUSIC

Seventeen
South Korean superstar crew Seventeen (who, despite their name, only have 13 members) will arrive in Washington for a stop on the North American leg of their Ode To You World Tour.

JANUARY 24

COMMUNITY

Night at the Museum: Knot Tonight
Tacoma's historic Balfour Dock building is the site for a new series of 21+ after-hours engagements. Sip beer from Diamond Knot Brewing, nosh on snacks, and enjoy access to all the Maritime Museum's activities and exhibits. 

COMMUNITY

Tet Celebration 2020
Celebrate the Lunar New Year and the year of the mouse at the University of Washington Tacoma. Experience Vietnamese culture at this free event that's open to students and non-students alike. 

MUSIC

Prom Date Mix Tape
Stranger Things isn't the only way to get your '80s music fix. The so-called "Greatest '80s tribute band in the Pacific Northwest" (according to KOMO TV) will be on hand to play the decade's most memorable new wave hits.

JANUARY 24–FEBRUARY 16

PERFORMANCE

Beehive The '60s Musical
Celebrate female empowerment '60s style and listen to classic tunes like "My Boyfriend's Back," "Be My Baby," and "Son of a Preacher Man." The show is a nostalgic story of six young women coming of age in a remarkable decade.

JANUARY 25

COMMUNITY

2020 Right to Play Gala
Get RAD at this '80s-themed event to benefit the Children's Museum of Tacoma. In addition to the bar service and a locally-sourced dinner, attendees can take part in a silent auction, raffle, and other games for a good cause. 

MUSIC

The Accused AD
Coffin Break, Dust Mob, and Dadbod accompany the night's headlining band for an evening of hard rock at Tacoma's live music lounge. 

Billy Idol & Duran Duran Tribute Night
Pay tribute to two iconic '80s rockers as Whiplash Smile and Tiger Tiger take the stage for one night to play the hits and relive the glory days of a bygone era of rock 'n' roll. 

Ozomatli
The Los Angeles-based band and multi-Grammy Award-winning outfit delivers a modern Latinx sound that encompasses hip-hop, funk, reggae and more. These "cultural ambassadors" are characterized by their creativity and festive spirit. 

PERFORMANCE

Horrific: A Night of Horror Themed Belly Dance
Bloody horror and the art of belly dance are an unlikely combo that somehow works at this campy show that features imaginative retellings of popular horror films like The Ring, IT, Arachnophobia, and more. 

VISUAL ART

Tacoma Night Market at The Museum of Glass
Join local artists and vendors, witness a live glassblowing demonstration in the Hot Shop, and enjoy live music, food, and beer in this all-ages event at the Museum of Glass. 

JANUARY 25-26 

MUSIC

Mozart & Mendelssohn & More
Pianist Jessica Choe will deliver an evening of live classical music, featuring Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor.

JANUARY 26

PERFORMANCE

'80s Drag Brunch
Is there a better way to spend a Sunday than with a brunch buffet, pitchers of mimosas, and drag queens? Hosted by Tacoma's Anita Spritzer, this show welcomes Cannoli, Dutchess Drew Nightshade, Karmen Korbel, and Strawberry Shartcake.  

The Peking Acrobats
These acrobats are a special effect unto themselves. Trick cycling, tumbling, and gymnastics are just part of the show as the performers defy gravity and demonstrate an astonishing mastery of agility and grace. 

VISUAL ART

Glazer's Photowalk: Tacoma
Capture images from around Tacoma at this unique photo walk. Participants will begin at the Museum of Glass and travel along the waterfront, before eventually heading downtown and through the University of Washington Tacoma campus.

JANUARY 30

MUSIC

Super Diamond
Come celebrate one of America's greatest singer/songwriters in this energetic, tribute show that even Neil Diamond himself has endorsed. 

PERFORMANCE

The Choir of Man
The show covers a variety of classic rock tunes and more contemporary "sing-a-long" favorites, all performed by nine "handsome blokes" from across the pond. 

JANUARY 31

VISUAL ART

January Winter Warmer
Let Hilltop Artists help you pass the winter nights with a series of impressive demonstrations in the Jason Lee Hot Shop. There'll be plenty of warm soups, bread, and beverages to enjoy, too.

MUSIC

Excision: The Thunderdome
This electronic music extravaganza boasts two days of artists from all over the place performing back-to-back sets, from 12th Planet, Tramp, and Champagne Drip (Fri) to Liquid Stranger, Sprag Heddy, and Lucii (Sat).