Getting Into the Holiday Spirit


Jerrilyn Brower

Welcome to Skagit Acres.

As the weather changes and the holidays near, many folks begin to search out ways to feel festive. For me there is no better way than to take in the sights, sounds and scents of shops and tree farms in our area.

Here are a few of my favorite places that I love to go to season myself to the Holiday spirit. So stop by your favorite coffee place and follow me on my festive day trip!

Skagit Acres

Festive Santa Claus display at Skagit Acres.
Festive Santa Claus display at Skagit Acres. (Jerrilyn Brower)

Just over 25 miles to the north on the left side of I-5 before reaching Mount Vernon lies the hand-painted barn sign welcoming its visitors to Skagit Acres. A plant nursery by summer transforms into a holiday wonderland in winter. Two massive barns are filled to the brim with gifts and trimmings alike, along with a wonderful café to take a break for snack or lunch. The gourmet candy section is an exploration for the eyes and the waistband. This is a great place for friends and family to get their photo taken with Santa, as they offer a large festive backdrop for everyone to fit in; by appointment only.

Lervik’s Christmas Tree Farm

Lervik's Christmas Tree Farm
Lervik’s Christmas Tree Farm (Jerrilyn Brower)

A tree farm on a budget, just 13 miles northeast of the college at the junction of Getchell Road and SR 92 is a small family, locally owned tree farm offering you friendly service and the necessities for you to pick your own tree and cut it down. While you will not get any frills, such as wagon rides, the Lervik family offers a fresh u-cut tree experience on a budget. Open only one 3-day weekend following Thanksgiving day, first come first served and they sell out quickly; “$80 for Noble Fir . . . $40 for Douglas Fir, Grand Fir, Spruce, etc., Baling/Wrapping is available for $3 per tree.”

Wintergreen Tree Farm

Wintergreen Tree Farm
Wintergreen Tree Farm (Jerrilyn Brower)

Now in their fifth year, the Perkl family welcomes folks to Wintergreen. A quick 9 miles due east, jump on the US 2 Trestle and at the other end, keep going straight. As the city turns residential and then to the countryside, the farm sits on the east side of Machias Road. A true family affair, they do it all; Christmas trees, wreaths, a warm outdoor fire-pit complete with lap blankets. The owner, Brandy Perkl, even puts together a quaint gift shop every year, offering affordability with a selection of unique ornaments and décor. Brandy says, as a tree farm in its infancy, their u-cut sells out quickly, but they offer a great selection of pre-cut to accommodate everyone. “We are open the day after Thanksgiving until we sell out, which could be eight [days] or 18 days.” Perkl warned. If you want to be sure, as it gets later in the season, you might want to call ahead to see if they are still open.

Downtown Snohomish

The Cinnamon stick in downtown Snohomish
The Cin-a-mon Stik on 1st street in Snohomish. (Jerrilyn Brower)

Well-known to locals as a collector’s paradise, First Street in Snohomish offers a great selection of arts galleries, specialty boutiques and gift shops. 11 miles southeast of campus, this is a must do. My favorite place as autumn arrives and then again as Christmas nears, I must visit and get my fix from The Cin-a-mon Stik/The Country Cupboard. Literally packed to the ceiling with primitives and candles, the narrowed aisles fit perfectly in the little weathered brick corner shop. The minute you enter the door, you can scents the reason you came. I always think I’ve got plenty of candles, but I constantly find something new to take home or gift; gourmet dips, primitive country décor, antiques, local and hand-made items. Make it a day and check out all the quaint shops and restaurants on the strip.

Sky Nursery

Sky Nursery Christmas Tree display.
The many Christmas trees of Sky Nursery. (Jerrilyn Brower)

Last but not least, Sky Nursery, some 22 miles south on highway 99, offers trees, wreaths, swags, and my favorite, a unique selection of gifts and sizable Christmas display. Fifth generation, locally owned by the Landry family, Sky Nursery has grown to one of the largest full -service year-round indoor/outdoor retail plant nurseries in the area; a rarity in this day and age. As December looms, they begin their busy holiday push. In the heart of Shoreline, Sky isn’t the most budget-friendly, but it still remains at the top of my list for at least a visit to get me hyped about the holiday season.

I recommend checking store hours, calling ahead if you are looking for something in particular, and shop early for the best selection as I have missed out in the past when I’ve waited too long to visit. Include friends and family and make your trip a memorable one; that’s what it’s all about, making memories with the ones you love.

Happy Holidays!