The Seafair Torchlight Parade’s array of drill teams, floats, marching bands, Seafair Pirates and Clowns will head down Fourth Avenue past an expected 150,000 spectators Saturday evening.
Many fans will have spots staked out with chairs, blankets and coolers by 7:30 a.m. to make a day of it. If you’re a latecomer, there’s always standing room, and reserved bleacher seating is available along the route (though some sections are sold out).
Seattle Sounders FC players and U.S. Men’s National Team members Clint Dempsey and DeAndre Yedlin are co-grand marshals for this year’s parade, and Super Bowl champs the Seattle Seahawks will be well-represented by mascot Blitz, the Sea Gals and Blue Thunder Drumline. Giant helium balloons, Seafair royalty, dancing horses, military bands and hydroplanes will be part of the 65th annual Seattle summer tradition.
Before the parade, Seattle Center hosts the Torchlight FanFest preview with exhibits, float displays, Seafair Clowns and concerts, including military battle of the bands, all free.
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Metro is providing extra service from several park-and-ride locations to get to and from the parade without having to worry about downtown traffic and parking; Sound Transit Central Link light rail also provides easy access to downtown. If you’re staying home, the Torchlight Parade will be broadcast live on KIRO-TV.
On the Eastside, Bellevue hosts its own big summer celebration: The Arts Fair Weekend. The BAM Arts Fair is Bellevue Arts Museum’s display and sale of works by hundreds of artists with live music, artist demonstrations, community art projects, KidsFair activities and free museum admission Friday-Sunday. Two other art fairs, Bellevue Festival of the Arts and Sixth Street Fair, fill more of downtown Bellevue with art, music and festivities all weekend. Parking is free at the Bellevue Collection, with valet parking available at some locations. Information on public transportation, biking, parking and traffic in Bellevue: ChooseYourWayBellevue.com.
Madeline McKenzie: firstname.lastname@example.org