For May 2018, we inspected the Greater Seattle on the Cheap calendar and website for free events that might be especially worthy of your consideration. Since we publish hundreds of events every month, we like to highlight a few of the more unique events throughout the region.
May 5, 2018. iFEST Indie Game Festival at Seattle Center is devoted to indie games of all types, including video, board, and card games. Experience, play and have fun with cool, innovative, unique and imaginative games produced by indie game developers. Other activities include industry speakers and an opportunity to cast a vote for your favorite game via the “People’s Choice” award. FREE admission.
May 6, 2018. Japanese Children’s Day Festival (Kodomo no Hi) in Seattle is a fun and exciting introduction to the rich world of children’s culture in Japan. Families can take part in the festival as an opportunity to experience multiculturalism while celebrating the health and growth of all children. Enjoy activities like Japanese style dancing performances, Yukata dress up, taiko, martial arts, kids’ tea ceremony, games, and food for purchase. FREE admission.
May 11-12, 2018. Northwest Paddling Festival at Lake Sammamish is the largest event of its kind in the Pacific Northwest. Featuring more than 60 paddle sports businesses offering canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, paddling equipment, accessories and gear. Shop, compare and browse the best in paddle sports brands side-by-side, enjoy a tour down Issaquah Creek, or learn a new skill at a seminar. There is a nominal fee for on-water demonstrations and tours. FREE admission.
May 11-13 and May 19-20. Camano Island Studio Tour is one of the most established art studio tours in the Pacific Northwest. The free self-guided tour includes juried artists, galleries and studios representing diverse mediums and styles. Located about 60 miles north of Seattle, the unique appeal of Camano Island is that it offers visitors a real-life island experience — without the hype. Don’t expect trendy tourist traps. There are a few restaurants, a handful of country-style grocery stores, bed and breakfast facilities, and intriguing art galleries. FREE admission.
May 12, 2018. Penn Cove Water Festival on Whidbey Island has Native American canoe races, arts and crafts, food, dance, music, traditional storytelling, and children’s activities. FREE admission.
May 18 – 20, 2018. Viking Festival and Parade in Poulsbo celebrates Scandinavian heritage with a parade, music, street festival, contests, food, carnival, tours, and more. The day commemorates Norway’s Constitution Day, May 17 (in Norwegian, “Syttende mai”), when Norway’s parliament adopted their constitution, modeled on the constitution of the U.S. FREE admission.
May 19, 2018. Armed Forces Day at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. JBLM opens its gates to the public to celebrate service men and women with historical reenactments, military vehicles, music, entertainers, food vendors, a beer garden, and carnival rides. Be sure to read the requirements for entry onto the military base (valid ID, vehicle inspection, weapons, pets, etc.). Free admission.
May 19-20, 2018. The University District StreetFair is the kick-off event for the Seattle summer festival season. It’s a family-friendly event with a special Kids Area, featuring activities and entertainment. The longest running festival of its kind in the nation and an exciting celebration of arts and crafts, community information, music, and food. You’ll find a whirl of color and creativity. Free admission.
May 26 – May 27, 2018. Classic Workboat Show in Seattle. Come down to Lake Union Park to the Historic Ships Wharf and see a collection of visiting working vessels: tug boats, fishing boats, and emergency response vessels. Activities for the whole the family, sea storytelling, and a beer garden. Free admission; donations gratefully accepted.
May 25 – 28, 2018. Northwest Folklife Festival is the annual free Memorial Day weekend celebration of ethnic, folk, and traditional arts. Folklife is Seattle’s unofficial leap into summer, with four days of jam-packed excitement all day and into the night. Free admission; donations appreciated.
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