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Central Oregon Coast's Newport Lights Up with Holidays - and with Whales

Published 11/08/2017 at 4:17 AM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Central Oregon Coast's Newport Lights Up with Holidays - and with Whales

(Newport, Oregon) – The holidays in Newport, on the central Oregon coast, are celebrated with vibrancy and verve. Beyond the colored lights, tinsel and even the winter storms, the town becomes a holiday hotspot with a variety of shimmering events – often with a theme of true giving – which then lead to exceptional whale watching opportunities.

From a parade of lighted boats, an Oregon Coast Aquarium that's all aglow to heart-warming benefits with a Christmas theme, Newport then caps off the month with more whale watching spots for Whale Watch Week than anywhere else.

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The fun begins just after Thanksgiving.

November 25. Santa Comes to Newport. Santa will be arriving at the Embarcadero Resort Hotel & Marina (1000 SE Bay Blvd) by 9:30 am. He will board a Newport Fire Engine to take a trip through town arriving at the Newport Recreation Center by 10 a.m. Have your photo taken with Santa there from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Free. Newport Recreation Center. 225 SE Avery St. (541) 265-7783.

December 1 – 3. Holiday House Arts & Craft Show. Holiday House has items that are homemade and juried. Includes homemade jams, candies, cookies and breads all freshly baked. Quilted wall hangings, table runners, dried apples, wreaths, bath soaps, items with sea themes, jewelry, toys, aprons, tea towels and photography. Numerous ornaments such as Santas, angels, snowmen, more. This is a benefit that helps provide gifts for the children of local fishing families. They will also be hosting a raffle with a prize basket of homemade items. Tickets will be available at the sale. December 1 and 2: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. December 3: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Yaquina Bay Yacht Club. 750 SE Bay Blvd., Newport, Oregon. https://www.facebook.com/HolidayHouseNewport.

December 2. Newport's Lighted Boat Parade. Local boats that are decorated with festive lights parade along the historic bayfront. Gather at various vantage points along the wharf. Parade begins at dusk. Watching is free; some cruise boats offer rides during the parade (for a charge). 541-265-6200.

Every Friday and Saturday in December: Sea of Lights at Oregon Coast Aquarium. The 25th annual Sea of Lights kicks off Friday and Saturday, December 1, and 2, and continues on every Friday and Saturday in December. Sea of Lights is the largest holiday lights display on Oregon's central coast. Pictures with Santa are available every night of Sea of Lights through Christmas. SCUBA Santa will dive in the exhibits every night of Sea of Lights until Christmas.

The initial weekend is from 6 - 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. Admission to the kickoff weekend: Free for Aquarium members, donated food item encouraged. $2 + 2 donated nonperishable food items for Food Share of Lincoln County per person. People may also donate new, unwrapped children's toys for the Newport Fire Department’s Holiday Toy Drive in place of a food donation. Admission to the kick off weekend without donation is $10.

After kickoff weekend, every following Friday and Saturday in December the Sea of Lights will illuminate the Aquarium from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. $10. after 5 p.m. The Oregon Coast Aquarium is open every day, except December 25, this winter from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information visit aquarium.org or call (541) 867-3474.

December 8. UnMasque the Night! - A Masquerade Ball. An abundance of libations, nibbles, noshes and desserts will be sure to please the palate of discerning partygoers – and it's all for a good cause. It's a winter ball to kickoff the season, along with the built-in purpose of giving as the event is a benefit for The Olalla Center for Children and Families in Toledo. The event also features a masquerade ball with the sounds of the Bringetto Jazz Quartet and dazzling dance numbers from the Pacific Dance Ensemble. There's a live auction of “sought after experiences, trinkets and treasures” such as trips, foods and valuable items.

The event is held at the Newport Elks, 45 SE Moore Rd, Newport, Oregon. 7 p.m. Tickets: $55. 541-336-2254.

December 27 – 31. Whale Watch Week in the Newport Area. Volunteers will be at dozens of high vantage points along the Oregon coast from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m – but seven of them are right in the Newport area.

Just north of Newport, in the Depoe Bay area, there are Boiler Bay State Scenic Viewpoint, Whale Watching Center at the Depoe Bay Sea Wall and Rocky Creek State Scenic Viewpoint.

Just outside of Newport are Cape Foulweather and the Devil's Punchbowl State Natural Area. Within Newport are Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area and Don Davis City Park in Nye Beach. More on Whale Watch Week: 541-765-3407. www.whalespoken.org. Newport Hotels for these events - Where to eat - Map and Virtual Tour

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