Weekend Guides

33 Major Events to Know About in the Seattle Area This Weekend: Jan 17-20, 2020

The Bavarian IceFest, Fiddler on the Roof, the MLK Day March, and More
January 16, 2020
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If you're digging the snow in Seattle, you'll be even more delighted by wintry activities like live ice carving and fireworks at this weekend's Bavarian IceFest in Leavenworth.
There may be snow on the ground and the Womxn's March Add to a List may be postponed, but the first three-day weekend of 2020 (thanks, Martin Luther King, Jr. Add to a List !) is still brimming with things to do. All week long, we've been posting lists of Seattle events to keep you busy (including the best arts & culture events, quirky things to do, and the best music shows to see), but we realize there's a lot to sort through. So, if you only have time to read one list, make it this one: We've plucked the biggest events you need to know about in every genre, from Fiddler on the Roof Add to a List to the annual Seattle MLK Day March and Celebration Add to a List , and from the Seattle Chamber Music Society Winter Festival Add to a List to Táşżt in Seattle Add to a List . See them all below, and find even more things to do this weekend on our complete EverOut Things To Do calendar.

Note: Events may be canceled or rescheduled due to snow. Double-check to be sure.


Jump to: MLK Day Events | Out-of-Town Wintry Festivals | Lunar New Year Events | Comedy & Performances | Major Concerts & Music Shows | Geeky & Special Interest Events | Film | Other Noteworthy Happenings

MLK DAY EVENTS

MLK Day of Service 2020 Add to a List
Whether it's cleaning up a public space, potting trees, or helping feed the hungry, there are dozens of opportunities to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by volunteering at local organizations as part of a group, as an individual, or as a group leader.
Monday, Various locations

MLK Weekend Run Add to a List
Take the long weekend as an opportunity to run in this annual 5, 10, or 15K race.
Saturday, Magnuson Park (Sand Point)

MLK Youth Kick-Off! Add to a List
Young people will get the spotlight during this all-day celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr.—take in African drumming, dance performances, spoken word, and more.
Sunday, Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute (Central District)

2020 Seattle MLK Day March and Celebration Add to a List
Garfield High School's 38th annual day of events celebrates the life and legacy of civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. with an opportunity fair, workshops, and pre- and post-march rallies Add to a List . This year's theme is "2020 Vision," which the organizers say "reflects the clarity of Dr. King's dream."
Monday, Garfield High School (Central District)

See also: The biggest MLK Day events this weekend.

OUT-OF-TOWN WINTRY FESTIVALS

Bavarian IceFest Add to a List
Each year over MLK weekend, Washington's Bavarian-style village, Leavenworth, celebrates winter's bounties with twinkling lights and frosty activities like frisbee sweeping, ice cube scrambling, and "smooshing." You can also look forward to live ice carving, ice fishing, a fireworks show, and more.
Saturday-Sunday, Downtown Leavenworth

Lake Chelan Winterfest Add to a List
Lake Chelan hosts two weekends of wintery fun for the whole family, including ice sculptures, live music, wine and beer tastings, a polar bear splash, snow yoga, a massive beach bonfire, and a fireworks show.
Friday-Sunday, Lake Chelan Valley

Winterhop Brewfest Add to a List
At this annual festival, join hundreds of other beer lovers to try Pacific Northwest brews from over 30 breweries and take in local music in various downtown Ellensburg businesses and venues.
Saturday, Historic Downtown Ellensburg

See also: The best winter festivals this year.

LUNAR NEW YEAR EVENTS

Chinese New Year Celebration Add to a List
Cofounders Raymond Kwan and Barry Chan named their Ballard craft brewery Lucky Envelope for the colorful red envelopes traditionally stuffed with money and given out on Chinese New Year to bring good fortune. So it only makes sense that it's the perfect place to usher in the Year of the Rat. On January 20, they'll unveil a bevy of brews inspired by Chinese tea. JULIANNE BELL
Monday, Lucky Envelope Brewing (Ballard)

Táşżt in Seattle Add to a List
Celebrate the Year of the Rat at this annual festival in anticipation of the Vietnamese Lunar New Year in early February. As always, there will be hands-on cultural activities, traditional food, crafts, martial arts performances, a market, and more.
Saturday-Sunday, Seattle Center

See also: The biggest Lunar New Year events this year.

COMEDY & PERFORMANCES

14/48: The World's Quickest Theater Festival Add to a List
True to its name, the 14/48 festival turns around 14 brand-new, theme-based, 10-minute plays in two days. The high-pressure nature of the event produces an evening of surprising theater for the audience, who arrive in their seats charged with expectation and anxiety for the performers. Though there are always a few experiments that don't quite come together, it's endlessly fascinating to see the way one theme filters through the minds of several very different theater artists. Expect shit to get weird. RICH SMITH
Friday-Saturday, ACT Theatre (Downtown)

Bohemia Add to a List
This "macabre and mystical" cabaret-style musical from Mark Siano and Opal Peachey, set in 1890s Prague, features the music of Dvořák and Chopin and art nouveau by Alphonse Mucha—plus "beautiful green fairies, aerial numbers, dance, burlesque, classical piano battles, comedy, and original songs." This will be the last edition of Bohemia before the whole crew heads over to Berlin.
Friday-Sunday, Triple Door (Downtown)

Dance Nation Add to a List
Washington Ensemble Theatre's press materials promise "intense feminine energy" from Dance Nation, a Pulitzer Prize–nominated play by Clare Barron about a preteen dance troupe gunning for nationals under the guidance of their frazzled coach. In an interview, Barron, a Yale grad who hails from Wenatchee (!), says the show was inspired by the complex portrait of ambition presented in Lifetime's reality television series Dance Moms, which means there's no way this isn't going to be good. Extra insurance for this prediction comes from the fact that Bobbin Ramsey, who has a gift for organizing chaos onstage, is codirecting the performance with Alyza DelPan-Monley. RICH SMITH
Friday-Sunday, 12th Avenue Arts (Capitol Hill)

Eugene Onegin Add to a List
This Seattle Opera production brings together the genius of two great Russians: Alexander Pushkin, who wrote the novel in verse, and Pyotr Tchaikovsky (The Nutcracker), who penned the score. It's a simple but moving and melancholy story of a young woman who falls in love with a cold-hearted nobleman, an encounter that tragically changes the course of their lives.
Saturday-Sunday, McCaw Hall (Seattle Center)

Fiddler on the Roof Add to a List
Fiddler on the Roof is a musical about… oh, you know what Fiddler on the Roof is. The important detail here is that this version is directed by Bartlett Sher, a former Seattle theater director who has gone on to fanciness and fame and Tony Awards with unbelievably brilliant restagings of musical classics, including South Pacific and The King and I. A Sher production of an old musical is always a good bet. CHRISTOPHER FRIZZELLE
Friday-Sunday, Paramount Theatre (Downtown)

The Guilty Feminist with Deborah Frances-White Add to a List
Join Deborah Frances-White if you've "ever felt like you should be better at feminism" for a live and lively recording of her hit podcast, which Phoebe Waller-Bridge (of Fleabag) has hailed as "genius."
Monday, Neptune Theatre (University District)

Hershey Felder as 'Monsieur Chopin' Add to a List
After his stint as Beethoven, the protean musician and actor Felder embodies the composer/pianist Fryderyk Chopin in a one-man show set just after the 1848 Revolution in France.
Saturday-Sunday, Seattle Repertory Theatre (Seattle Center)

Mystery Science Theater 3000 Live Add to a List
Those irrepressible connoisseurs of godawful movies, Joel, Crow T. Robot, Servo, and Gypsy, will head out on Joel's last tour promising live riffs on a cinematic stinker.
Saturday, Moore Theatre (Belltown)

Peacock
An ambitious young man in 1920s Paris works his way up in a ritzy nightclub in Can Can's latest kitschy-glam, flesh-baring, plot-driven revue.
Friday-Sunday, Can Can (Downtown)

Reparations Add to a List
Sound Theatre Company kicks off its 2020 season with the world premiere of Darren Canady's Reparations, a speculative drama about healing inherited traumas using a device that transforms your blood into a time machine. The cast features Allyson Lee Brown, whose turn as Serena Williams in Citizen: An American Lyric drew effusive praise from Stranger editor Christopher Frizzelle: "[Brown is] such a captivating presence onstage, it's hard to look away from her." Jay O'Leary, who did such a great job pulling the good acting out of the players in Washington Ensemble Theatre's B, will direct. This production is stacked with so much talent—it is certainly one of the most highly anticipated shows of the season. RICH SMITH
Monday, Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute (Central District)

The Rivals Add to a List
George Mount will direct Richard Brinsley Sheridan's 18th-century comedy of manners, full of false identities and well-meaning deceptions, and, as the producers say, "duels, dandies, deceptions, and dudes with daddy issues." It's the play from which the term malapropism is derived, thanks to Mrs. Malaprop, a comic character who uses the wrong words that sound like the right ones. The more you know!
Friday-Sunday, Center Theatre (Seattle Center)

She Loves Me Add to a List
Joe Masteroff, Jerry Bock, and Sheldon Harnick, progenitors of the deathless Fiddler on the Roof Add to a List , also wrote this sweet musical about two perfume store clerks who butt heads constantly—not realizing that they're also in a romantic letter-writing relationship thanks to a classified. Yes, it's the plot of You've Got Mail.
Friday-Sunday, Village Theatre (Issaquah)

True West Add to a List
America’s favorite masc4masc playwright Sam Shepard is dead. He passed away in 2017, but the swaggering cowboy, called the “greatest American playwright of his generation” by New York magazine, is continuing to get a retrospective on stages across the country. Now the celebration comes to the Seattle Rep, with the theater putting on True West, a gritty and funny play about two brothers and some identity theft. Expect brawls and belly laughs. CHASE BURNS
Friday-Sunday, Seattle Repertory Theatre (Seattle Center)

See also: Our arts & culture critics' picks for this week.

MAJOR CONCERTS & MUSIC SHOWS

King Princess Add to a List
Take in Brooklyn multi-instrumentalist King Princess' smooth vocals and pop beats as she performs tracks that explore queer independence and the complexities of youth.
Saturday, Showbox Sodo

Rick Steves' Europe: A Symphonic Journey Add to a List
Rick Steves is my favorite travel-writer-turned-TV-host. He’s just so damn cheerful and enthusiastic on his show, Rick Steves' Europe, without coming off as cheesy. Okay, maybe he does come off as cheesy, but in the most endearing way possible, as he encourages us to bypass tourist hot spots in favor of lesser-known gems, and to become immersed in local culture. He’s kind of like a less crusty, less wry, less food-oriented Anthony Bourdain—and his show came first! This collab with Seattle Symphony finds him playing musical tour guide, dipping into his far-reaching knowledge of European history and culture to set the context for selections in a program of 19th-century patriotic anthems by Romantic-era composers—Grieg, Smetana, Strauss, Elgar, Wagner and Verdi, with a Beethoven "Ode to Joy" finale. All of it is accompanied by a montage of video images from each country. LEILANI POLK
Friday, Benaroya Hall (Downtown)

Riff Raff Add to a List
Horst Christian Simco, a Texan hip-hop artist and walking meme who goes by the considerably zippier moniker Riff Raff, will bring his absurd brand of trap rap to Seattle on his Cranberry Vampire tour.
Friday, Trinity (Pioneer Square)

Seattle Chamber Music Society Winter Festival Add to a List
Hear pieces from a variety of composers at the Seattle Chamber Music Society's annual six-day winter program. This year's theme is centered on a celebration of Beethoven’s 250th birthday. The first weekend of the festival will feature half of Beethoven’s string quartets, performed by the Ehnes Quartet, with each of the first three concerts featuring one work from the three eras of his life and career as a composer.
Friday-Sunday, Benaroya Hall (Downtown)

See also: Our music critics' picks for this week.

GEEKY & SPECIAL INTEREST EVENTS

46th Model Railroad Show Add to a List
Calling all train enthusiasts: This three-day exhibition will feature lots of railroad displays in all kinds of landscapes built by professional model-makers—many of whom will be there in person.
Saturday-Monday, Pacific Science Center (Seattle Center)

The Pacific NW Reptile & Exotic Animal Show Add to a List
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.
Saturday-Sunday, Washington State Fair Events Center (Puyallup)

See also: Quirky things to do this week.

FILM

'Bad Boys for Life' Opening
Will Smith and Martin Lawrence are back for a sequel, but—happily—without Michael Bay as director. In the reprise of this long-dormant franchise, the two cops take on one last case after an assassination attempt almost kills one of them.
Friday-Monday, Various locations

Seattle Wine & Film Festival Add to a List
Get gussied up for a black-tie gala and festival featuring short films, documentaries, and features; a performance from classical guitarist Matt Palmer; and tastings from Eastern Washington wineries you might not know about.
Saturday-Sunday, Old Rainier Brewery (Sodo)

'Weathering With You' Opening
Audiences seem to love director Makoto Shinkai (Your Name) and his approach of pairing an original plot with standard anime emotional blocking: boy meets girl, girl has weather powers, boy and girl reach for each another’s arms in climactic moments, a character runs until they are exhausted and then they keep running, and also someone must die. Even when Shinkai introduces some interesting ideas about an impending climate apocalypse (oh, like us!), it all feels familiar: The world isn’t saved, but the world doesn’t end. The world continues, changed. SUZETTE SMITH
Friday-Monday, Regal Meridian 16 (Downtown)

See also: Where to watch this year's Oscar-nominated movies in theaters.

OTHER NOTEWORTHY HAPPENINGS

L. A. Ring: On the Edge of the World Add to a List (Closing)
On the Edge of the World is the first exhibition of Danish artist L.A. Ring’s work in the United States. Ring worked within the Symbolist and Realist tradition in the early 20th century, documenting the change in lifestyle occurring during that period in Denmark. Though extremely important to both Danish and Nordic culture, his work is relatively unknown outside his native land. The exhibit will feature 25 key paintings that best represents the work Ring did as a whole. The Nordic Museum will also be offering a special aquavit cocktail in their café, Freya, in honor of this exhibition—you can’t miss it. JASMYNE KEIMIG
Friday-Sunday, National Nordic Museum (Ballard)

UFC 246 Matches Add to a List
The Seahawks lost the playoffs last weekend, but your sports-watching opportunities are about to pick up again: This Saturday, former two-division mixed martial arts champion Conor McGregor will return to face off against his rival Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone in the welterweight headliner of the Ultimate Fighting Championship 246 card, which also includes a match between women’s bantamweight champion Holly Holm and ex-title challenger Raquel Pennington. Watch the action at these local bars. 
Saturday, Various locations

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