A trip down Bellevue Square’s Snowflake Lane is a traditional Seattle institution – and a meaningful rite of passage for families during the holiday season.  Take your little ones on an unforgettable trip of dazzling displays along the sidewalks of Bellevue Way and NE 8th Street.  Together, you’ll experience the sounds of the season, glittering holiday lights, dramatic drumming from live toy soldiers and magical snow falling from the sky.

Guess what? This year, Bellevue Square’s Snowflake is bigger and better (and totally more awesome) than ever with new attractions that will warm your heart and delight your little ones. Here’s our picks for the newest attractions you just can’t miss:

Just for Your Little Princesses…
Meet and greet with the princesses of Snowflake Lane and take your own pictures with them on the drive between Cheesecake Factory and the parking garage just off Bellevue Way.

Get Your Boogie On…
Enjoy the dance routines of the Jingle Belles Dancers between the Westin and the Bellevue Arts Museum

A Snowstorm Where You Won’t Have to Shovel Snow…
Get down to the sound of the steel drums with the Snowstorm drummers. Bellevue Place and Fountain Court in front of Macy’s.

Ditch the Weekends…
Come mid-week for less lines and a more manageable crowd.  We recommend Mondays – Wednesdays.  Snowflake lane is open from November 23 – December 31.

The Best of the Best Views…
Stand right in front of Bellevue Place on the corner of Bellevue Way & NE 8th. From here you can see down the whole street of lights.

Say Cheese…
Check out the new Little Princess Court in the NE driveway between Cheesecake Factory and Blue C. Sushi and get your pics with the princesses.  But you can also find more characters near NE 8th St by Paddy Coyne’s (between Bellevue Arts Museum and Palomino) and the NE Drive, just south of Crate and Barrel.

Where to Ditch the Four Wheels:
Try the Bellevue Place parking garage enter off of NE 10th.

“Mom, I have to go”…
The easiest place to hit the bathrooms?  Try the Lodge Building by Starbucks and Lincoln Square, on the second level by Lucky Strike Lanes or inside Bellevue Square in multiple locations.

Need Some Extra Room?…
One of the easiest spots to get to for anyone with mobility concerns would be parking in Bellevue Place, using the Bellevue Place Garage to the Lobby level and watching from the corner of NE 8th and Bellevue Way on the Bellevue Place side.

Ho, ho, ho. Santa’s Arrival to Snowflake Lane…
While Snowflake Lane happens every night, Santa only arrives once and only once to Snowflake Lane on Friday, November 23 at 7:00 pm.  There’s a new parade route this year that starts on NE 8th at the Bellevue Place and Lincoln Square skybridge and winds down Bellevue Way past Macy’s then back to the Hyatt.

This year has a new surprise as Santa and some of this favorite characters from Snowflake Lane finish the Parade at the Bellevue Wintergardent for a meet and greet, plus photo ops. This happens right after the parade, so bring your cameras!  And need a great place to view the parade?  Try a spot on NE 8th!

The best time to arrive for the parade is between 6:00 – 6:30 pm on November 23.

The best spot to see Santa arrive?  
Check out the Bellevue Place fountain court and inside the Wintergarden for meet and greet and pictures with the Snowflake Lane characters.

Did we miss any tips or tricks to enjoying this Seattle tradition? Let us know below!

photo courtesy of Debs via Creative Commons