Visit Dayton For its Two-Day ‘Christmas Kickoff’

Your wish for an old-fashioned Christmas is your dream come true in Dayton, the “town that still believes”.

A mule-drawn carriage ride, carolers wishing you a Merry Christmas in front of the storefronts, and shops and businesses serving holiday cookies and cheer. A community brought together to share a warm smile with friends, family members and visitors. These are all part of Dayton’s “Christmas Kickoff” celebration.

Traditions become memories. The Festival of Trees will feature trees decorated by local businesses and organizations. Children’s eyes twinkle as they line up to visit Santa and his reindeer, while adults shop the town’s retail stores and a busy Christmas Market in the state’s oldest train depot. Izzy the camel is led up and down Main Street before settling into his role in a live Nativity scene. Diners turn toward the darkened windows to see a street lit up by a lighted Christmas parade. Residents and guests then gather as the town Christmas tree comes to life, and they celebrate as fireworks light up the sky over the state’s oldest working courthouse.

This is how Dayton, Wash., kicks off the Christmas season every year, beginning on the day after Thanksgiving.

Enjoy a hayride, wine-tasting, cookies and cocoa, music, live reindeer, the Festival of Trees, the Ugly Christmas Sweater 5k Dash and the Christmas Bazaar. For the children there are kids’ crafts and letters and visits with Santa.

Come for the fun but stay for the parade and the lighting of the Christmas tree, followed, of course, by a sky ablaze with fireworks. And be sure to take a bus ride around town to enjoy the lighted homes. These are just some of the activities this historic small town boasts for this event.

Visit Dayton on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 25 and 26, for this free two-day festival. For more information, please visit, call the Dayton Chamber of Commerce at (509) 382-4825, or send email to