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View of Walla Walla in Winter

Winter in Walla Walla

What’s happening during DECEMBER, JANUARY & FEBRUARY:

A quieter and slower pace greets those who visit Walla Walla during the winter, but the season offers plenty to do to and keep visitors busy (and fed)! The first weekend of December, holiday spirit abounds with area wineries hosting Holiday Barrel events throughout the Valley and downtown Walla Walla kicking off the season with the annual holiday parade of lights.

Holiday Barrel Event

For those interested in outdoor recreation, Washington state’s second highest base elevation ski hill is about an hour away, so skiers and snowboarders can enjoy short lines and deep powder at Bluewood…and in February, they can also enjoy the best post-apres ski beer experience at Walla Walla BrewFest (February 17, 2024) – a day-long celebration of local breweries in the area.

For those more interested in indoor entertainment, the Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival offers a special concert in December as well as its Winter Music Festival in January. 

But everyone can enjoy all the specials available during February. Known as Walla Walla Restaurant Month, visitors can enjoy special prix fixe menu offerings from local restaurants and lodging deals. 


While chamber music is known for its intimacy, the Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival takes it to a whole other level. Each January, the four-day festival that started in 2008 brings artists from all over the country — and sometimes beyond — into tasting rooms, production facilities and other nontraditional venues for interactive performances of classical music. It returns again in June with a different set of shows.

Founder and Artistic Director Timothy Christie has either performed, dined, drank or otherwise explored Walla Walla’s corners over the years to create his own wintertime traditions, many revolving around the expansive food scene:

The morning routine begins at Colville Street Patisserie, 40 S. Colville St., for coffee and quick bread or kouign amann. After morning rehearsals, negotiations over lunch stops typically are made among the performers for either Dora’s Deli, 1303 S. Third Ave., or La Cocina De La Abuela (Grandma’s Kitchen), 36 S. Colville St., both beacons of authentic Mexican fare.

In the midst of January’s often unpredictable weather, a tee time at Wine Valley Golf Club, 176 Wine Valley Road, is a wintertime treat. An equal favorite is a ski or snowboard trip to alpine ski area Bluewood, about 50 miles northeast of Walla Walla. If neither of those can be squeezed in, shopping in downtown’s boutiques, including Studio Opal, 61 E. Main St., keeps you close to the core of town.

After an afternoon’s exertion, he seeks a negroni at Passatempo Taverna, 215 W. Main St., and a slate of dishes depending on the mood at Walla Walla restaurants — brisket tacos at AK’s Mercado, 21 E. Main St.; steak frites at Brasserie Four, 4 E. Main St.; or kibbeh nayyeh at Saffron Mediterranean Kitchen, 330 W. Main St.

Winter is coming! Are you ready for the holiday spirit in Walla Walla?