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Your Seattle Parks and Recreation Winter Bucket List

Our city may be a little wet in the winter, but with 26 community centers, eight indoor pools and ten indoor tennis courts, we have endless ways to help you stay active during the rainy months. And for those willing to brave the colder temperatures, our parks offer unique flora and fauna at this time of year, including excellent opportunities to explore the tides and the creatures we see on the beach during the colder months.

Workout indoors:
Don’t let the blustery weather dampen your fitness goals! We offer all sorts of indoor fitness classes—from hatha yoga to capoeira, and everything in between—to help you break a sweat without ever having to face the wind, rain or snow. We also have eight indoor pools maintained at 85 degrees, many of which feature water slides, spa/warming pools, diving boards, saunas and rope swings. And our community centers feature a wide array of drop-in activities, many of which will be FREE in 2017, to help keep you active and connected during the winter months.

  • Latin Dance: Come experience the rhythmic sounds of the Latin culture while learning the basic moves to dances such as Salsa, Merengue, and Bachata to name a few. Learn about the rhythm and timing of the music, as well as technique in leading and following. Learn basic footwork, dance positions and connections between partners. Click here for more information.
    Roller Derby: Adult Roller Derby is the fastest growing sport in the world, with over 60 leagues forming every week around the globe. Our program is athletic, instructional, non-violent, a great workout and has an amazing community. Seattle Parks and Recreation has teamed up with Seattle Citywide Derby to provide the first league of its kind. Click here for more information.
    Drop-in activities: Thanks to funding from the Seattle Park District as part of the Community Center Strategic Plan, starting on January 1, 2017, most drop-in activities at our community centers will now be free! For most community centers, this means the following activities are now free: Tot Gyms and Tot Rooms; Fitness Rooms; Basketball, Pickleball, Dodgeball, Volleyball; Pool Tables; Table games like Bridge or Mahjong; and most other activities that previously required $1, $2, or $3 drop-in fees. Click here to learn more.

Explore the winter scenery:


Fight off the winter blues by getting outdoors! Our parks and natural areas are teeming with life during these cold months—come check out the unique flora and fauna filling our parks with our guided nature walks, tidepool exploration activities, salamander searches and more.

  • Tidepools by Flashlight: Explore the tidepools at Discovery Park at night on Jan. 13 with our Environmental Learning Center staff. Bring your family and friends for a beach adventure—by flashlight! A unique late night nature experience right here in the city. Click here for more information on signing up.
    Wintergreen Walk: Fight seasonal affective disorder by going outside! Sign up for the Wintergreen Walk on Jan. 21 and discover why Washington is called the evergreen state while having a tree-mendous adventure with a Seattle Urban Nature Guide in the Camp Long Forest. Click here for more information.
    Search for spring walk: Travel with a Seattle Urban Nature Guide through Camp Long and Longfellow Creek area in search of signs of spring on March 4. During this nature walk we’ll listen for early migrating birds, look for the colors of plant growth, and sniff the air for the scent of the onset of new life. Click here for more information.

Tap into your artistic side:


It can be a challenge to think of ways to keep you and your family busy during the long winter months. But with dozens of arts and crafts, music and creative movement activities at your local community center, there’s no reason for you and your little ones to suffer from cabin fever or boredom!

  • Youth and adult piano lessons: Learn to play the piano from an experienced professional teacher in weekly 30-minute private lessons. Training includes sight-reading, technique, expression, theory and chords. Students must have access to an electric keyboard or piano for practice outside of lessons. Learn more: Click here for more information.
    Messy arts for toddlers: Hands on experience with arts and crafts you might now want to try at home. The joys of creative thinking and self-expression are brought to life using mixed media. Parents act as a child’s assistant. Click here for more information.
    Acrobatic and circus arts class: This beginning circus class will keep you moving! Instructors from the School of Acrobatic and New Circus Arts will teach tumbling, wire walking, juggling, trampoline, rolling globe and acrobatics. Click here for more information.

Connect with your community:


At Seattle Parks and Recreation, we help build strong communities by connecting residents with opportunities to interact with each other in a variety of active and passive ways. During the winter months, we are hosting a variety of events to help bring diverse groups of people together for recreation and healthy activities. Come connect with your community by participating in one of the following community events:

  • Polar Bear Plunge: Start off the New Year with a splash! Seattle Parks and Recreation and the Meadowbrook Community Center Advisory Council are co-sponsoring the 15th annual Polar Bear Plunge at noon on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017 at Matthews Beach. Click here for more information.
    Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: We invite the public to join a youth-organized march to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Saturday, Jan. 14 at Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Park. Teens from throughout the city will speak out against injustice via a peaceful demonstration. The goal of the march is to celebrate the contributions Seattle youth make in creating a better city and to honor the work that youth do to keep Dr. King’s dream alive every day. Click here to learn more.
    Neighborhood Appreciation Day: Celebrate Seattle’s annual Neighborhood Appreciation Day, a special day set aside to reach out to neighbors, create new friends and express thanks to those who help make your neighborhood a great place to live. Celebrate Neighborhood Appreciation Day at Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center on Feb. 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., or at Magnolia Community Center on Feb. 2 from 1 to 3 p.m.