For a second year in a row, the popular Seafair festival will not take place in its traditional form this summer. Instead, smaller Seafair events will occur throughout July and August in both virtual and in-person formats.

“While encouraged by Governor (Jay) Inslee’s Phase 3 guidelines that support small and medium size events to return with limitations, Seafair leadership recognizes the guidelines will not support events the scale of a city-wide festival,” organizers said in a news release.

Seafair events that will take place virtually this summer are the Seafair Summer 4th, Milk Carton Derby, Seattle Fleet Week, The Boeing Air Show and The HomeStreet Bank Cup that features the popular hydroplane races.

The Seafair Triathlon, Torchlight Parade and Seafair Torchlight Run will offer both in-person and other options.

The Fourth of July event will broadcast on KING-5, and feature footage from past Seafair fireworks shows over Lake Union at 10 p.m. The show will also look ahead to what else Seafair has planned for the summer and what’s coming in 2022.

The Milk Carton Derby, which usually takes place at Green Lake, will not be happening in person this year, but people are encouraged to build milk carton boats at home and share their creations for a chance to win prizes.


Last year, Seafair modified the Torchlight Parade to run through Seattle-area neighborhoods every week for four weeks. This year, that same format returns each week in July and August. Neighborhoods will be nominated to win a Seafair caravan that includes clowns, pirates, parade marshals and more. There will also be parade-themed activities online for all ages.

The Seafair Triathlon (July 25) and Torchlight Run (July 31) will both be offered in a combination of live and virtual formats. Details about final routes, registration and more will be available on the Seafair website in May.

Seattle Fleet Week (Aug. 2-6) will be presented in an online format with over 100 Fleet Week and Boeing Maritime activities, including ship tours and interviews with Blue Angels pilots.

The Boeing Air Show will also be online, with activities including a fully simulated performance by the U.S. Blue Angels, coloring pages, a downloadable Zoom background and more.

Hydroplane racing featuring drivers competing on the Lake Washington course and a look back at the past 70 years of races broadcast on KING-5 and more will be a part of this year’s HomeStreet Bank Cup.

Additionally, Seafair is bringing back its “Summer of Service” showcase. Each week in July and August, Seafair’s social media platforms will feature a local nonprofit and ways to support them.

According to the news release, Seafair’s online activities will begin Friday, June 18, and ticket holders for Seafair’s 2021 events will be contacted regarding refunds and other options soon.

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