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Tacoma’s Biggest Waterfront Activities and Events

Tacoma's Biggest Waterfront Activities

The Tacoma Waterfront is Alive With Activity

The waterfront of any city is often a hub of activity. Commencement Bay in Tacoma Washington is no different. Today, the Tacoma waterfront’s newest attraction is the nearly one mile long multi-surface trail system, known as the Waterwalk at Point Ruston. The Waterwalk has quickly become popular among walkers and joggers.

The activity on the Tacoma waterfront has grown even more since the master-planned waterfront shopping, dining, and entertainment destination, Point Ruston, began adding amenities to the waterfront offerings. With six restaurants and more than 300 luxury residences, Point Ruston is a highly desirable mixed use neighborhood with plans to develop a destination of more than 75 stores and businesses, a nine-theater Cineplex and ice skating rink, during the winter months.

The new residents, just like Commencement Bay visitors, will find events during every season to enrich their lives and create a truly vibrant wafterfront lifestyle.

Deflect Winter’s Chill With Activity and Light

Fend off the holiday pounds with Donner and Blitzen’s 21K Run. This annual event begins at the Murray House downtown, and follows Ruston Way to Point Ruston. The Waterwalk is the turnaround point, and runners have another chance to enjoy the Puget Sound before reaching the finish line at Dock Street. The race begins at 8:30 on December 12. Register or get more information at:

New Year’s enthusiasts can choose to celebrate New Year’s Day and Eve by attending Zoolights, Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium’s magnificent holiday light display. Zoolights runs from late November through early January, and is open from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. nightly so visitors can wander through exhibits that are illuminated by more than half a million lights and more than 100 3D lighted animal sculptures.  Learn more about Zoolights at:

Spring Brings More Than May Showers

Each spring, the residents at the Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium celebrate Earth Day with special enrichment activities. Visitors will be treated to witnessing the intelligent nature of wildlife. Check the Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium calendar, to join in the celebration.

Enjoy Spectacular Summertime Events

One of the Tacoma’s most popular run kicks off summer; the Sound to Narrows 12K run begins in Point Defiance Park, and the route also concludes in the park. Entrants run Point Defiance’s famed Five-Mile Drive and passes by historic Fort Nisqually. You can register or learn more online:

A food enthusiast’s delight —the Taste of Tacoma boasts more than 30 restaurants and has hosts more than 200,000 visitors during the three-day weekend. This annual food festival takes place in June in Point Defiance Park. If you’d like to know more about Taste of Tacoma, visit their Facebook page at:

One of the Northwest’s best July 4th fireworks display takes place right on Ruston Way. Freedom Fair is a free, daylong event that features live music, food and craft booths throughout the day, before ending with one of the largest fireworks celebrations in the Pacific Northwest. Learn more at:

Fall Activities Keep You Active and Engaged

Downtown to Defiance is an open street event that closes seven miles of streets to automobile traffic. The course runs from downtown and along Ruston Way so walkers, bikers and skaters can safely enjoy the route and special events along the way. Learn more at:

If you’re interested in sustainable gardening, then the Fall Garden Festival at Point Defiance Park is perfect for you. This free event takes place in late September near the Point Defiance Pagoda and features free educational sessions that offer new ways to garden in the city.

There’s always something happening in and around the Tacoma waterfront. You can keep an eye on the community’s activities by visiting Point Ruston’s Event Calendar at:

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