Holiday events in the Mid-Columbia

By Dori O'Neal, Herald staff writerDecember 14, 2012 

Here's a list of lively concerts, eye-catching tree-lighting ceremonies, parades and festivals happening around the Northwest this holiday season.

-- Toy Train Christmas is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 15-16 in the Northern Pacific Railway Museum, 10 Asotin Ave., Toppenish. Admission is $6 for adults and $4 for kids 12 and under. Call 509-865-1911.

-- Take a walk in a winter wonderland at Riverside State Park in Spokane through Dec. 16 as the town celebrates its annual Winter Wonderland festival. Hours are from 6 to 8 p.m. Festivities include caroling, a visit from Santa, hay rides and a light show. Hot chocolate, coffee, cider and baked goods will be on hand. Admission is $5.

-- The Cathedral of Joy's Living Nativity is Dec. 14-15 and 19-23 at the church, 1153 Gage Blvd., Richland. Tickets must be purchased in advance with set times to attend. Cost is $10 for ages 13 and older, $5 for ages 5 to 12 and free for ages 4 and younger. For tickets, call the church at 627-1109 or go to

-- Decorate holiday ornaments with the Hanford Reach Interpretive Center from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 15 at the Richland Community Center, 500 Amon Park Drive. Cost is $5 per ornament kit. All ages are welcome.

-- The Filipino American Association of the Tri-Cities is holding a Christmas party starting at 5 p.m. Dec. 15 at St. Joseph's School, 901 W. Fourth Ave., Kennewick. There will be Filipino food and traditional entertainment. The cost for members is $20 for adults and $15 for kids 5 and older. The cost for nonmembers is $25.

-- The Nutcracker ballet, presented by the Walla Walla Symphony and the Eugene Ballet, is at 2 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 15 at Cordiner Hall, 46 S. Park St., Walla Walla. Cost is $25-$35 for adults and $15-$25 for students. Tickets are available at or by calling 509-529-8020.

-- The Pasco Luminaria starts at 6 p.m. Dec. 15 in the Desert Plateau neighborhood between Burden Boulevard and Argent Road in West Pasco. Featured are hundreds of homes spruced up with festive lights, caroling and a visit from Santa.

-- The Nativity Celebration open house is from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Dec. 15 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on Porto Lane in Pasco. Free. Call 591-5968. Hundreds of Nativity Scenes from around the world will be on display, along with artwork depicting the life and ministry of Jesus. There will also be music, video presentations and crafts for children.

-- Franklin County Museum's annual Holiday Open House is from 2 to 4 p.m. Dec. 15 at the Pasco museum, 305 N. Fourth Ave. Admission is free.

-- The Holiday Celebration on Ice, a Tri-Cities Figure Skating Club event, starts at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 21 at the Toyota Arena, next to the coliseum in Kennewick. Admission is $3.

-- Christmas Around the World is a cultural presentation by the Kennewick East Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and starts at 7:00 p.m. on Dec. 15 & 16. It will include vocal and instrumental music, dance and Nativity displays at the Union Building, 515 S. Union St., Kennewick. Free and family friendly.

-- A holiday pet drive continues through Dec. 31 at the Horn Rapids Landfill, 3120 Twin Bridge Road, Richland. Donations of pet food and supplies will be accepted and delivered to Pet Over Population Prevention in January. The landfill is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Sunday. It will be closed Dec. 24-25.

-- The Puttin' on the Ritz New Year's Eve Gala starts at 6 p.m. Dec. 31 at the Red Lion Hotel, next to Columbia Center mall in Kennewick. Cost is $70 for dancing and dinner. Reservations are encouraged. Call Beth Trost at 586-7609 or email

-- The Festival of Lights continues through Dec. 23 at the Umatilla County Fairgrounds in Hermiston. The light show starts each night at dusk. Admission is free.

-- CREHST Museum's Snow Village exhibit continues through Jan. 10 at the Richland museum, 96 Lee Blvd. The Department 56 collection includes six houses from 1976 era. The collection was donated to CREHST by Tri-City residents Gary and Brenda Schumacher. Museum hours are from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $5 for adults and $4 for seniors and students.

-- The Oregon Zoo will be decked out in holiday magic during the annual ZooLights festival, which continues through Dec. 31 at the Portland-area zoo. Hours are from 5 to 8 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and from 5 to 8:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. The zoo is closed Dec. 24-25. ZooLights tickets, which include admission and a train ride, cost $12.50 for ages 12-64, $11 for 65 and older, $9.50 for ages 3 to 11 and free for kids 2 and younger. Without the train ride, admission is $10, $8.50 and $7.

*Dori O'Neal: 582-1514;

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