Things to do in Tacoma

What to do in Tacoma Washington - Tacoma Skyline

When visiting our fair city of Tacoma you want to be sure to check out everything Tacoma has to offer. We have compiled a list of all the hot spots in and around the Tacoma area.

Having friends or family in from out of town? Of course you will want to bring them to the Waterfront Market at Ruston first, but what about after? What else is there to do in Tacoma? Well, here is a great local approved list. Let us know if you have some other Tacoma hot spots near the market we need to add!

What to do in Tacoma

Events at Waterfront Market at Ruston

Waterfront Market at Ruston

Of course, the Waterfront Market at Ruston is the first on our list. Locals and visitors love coming to the market to see what the Pacific Northwest has to offer.

Tours of Tacoma with Gritty City Tours

Pretty Gritty Tours

If you have someone in from out of town, or if you just want to get to know our city a bit more take a tour of Tacoma and the surrounding areas with Pretty Gritty Tours.

Chihuly Bridge of Glass

Within driving distance from our market, the Chihuly Bridge of Glass is a great place to find some of the worlds finest glass art projects. Bridge of Glass.

Point Defiance Park - Tacoma Washington

Point Defiance Park

Tacoma's Point Defiance park is a short 10 minute walk from the Waterfront Market at Ruston. This huge park has lots of seashore as well as forest to explore. Check out Point Defiance Park here.

Lemay America's Car Museum - Tacoma Washington

LeMay - America's Car Museum

A short drive away, this stunning 165,000-sq.-ft. facility has been recognized as one of MSN’s 10 Best Automotive Museums worldwide, USA Today’s 10 Best Museums in Seattle and KING5’s Best Museum in Western Washington. Learn more about the car museum here.

Washington State History Museum - Tacoma Washington

Washington State History Museum

Located on Pacific Avenue in Tacoma, the museum’s brick façade and vaulted arches create a distinctive landmark in keeping with neighboring Union Station... Check out the Washington State History Museum's website.

Museum of Glass - Tacoma Washington

Museum of Glass

Museum of Glass, in the heart of downtown Tacoma, offers live glassblowing demonstrations, dynamic exhibitions, and make your own glass experiences. Learn more about Tacoma's Museum of Art here.

Metro Parks Tacoma - Ruston's park department

Metro Parks

Metro Parks Tacoma creates and supports our great parks here in Tacoma. We have SO many beautiful places to meet and explore, the hardest part is figuring out which park to visit first! Check out some great parks today.

Tacoma Art Museum - Tacoma Washington

Tacoma Art Museum

The Tacoma Art Museum is a great place to spend the day. Lot's of great local art. Here is some more information on the TAM. Pretty Gritty Tours.

Foss Waterway Seaport -Tacoma Washington

Foss Waterway Seaport

Just a short drive from our Market you can explore our region’s extraordinary maritime heritage! Learn how the people, boats, and industries that built the heart of Tacoma have shaped our future and changed the way we view the treasures of Puget Sound. Check out our maritime history

Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium - Tacoma WA

Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium

A great place to bring the kids, the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium is the only combined zoo and aquarium in the Pacific Northwest, located in Tacoma, Washington. Start your zoorific adventure here!

Wright Park

Wright Park is ideal for a leisurely stroll or taking your kids to the playground or sprayground. This 27 acre arboretum is home to a rich collection of more than 600 trees. Start your zoorific adventure here!

Visit Vashon Island from Tacoma

Visit Vashon Island - Ferry Ride

Within walking distance, the Point Defiance ferry can take you to Vashon Island. Explore the island called The Heart of the Puget Sound. Explore Vashon Island here.

Dune Park Tacoma Washington

Dune Peninsula at Point Defiance Park

With space enough to accommodate public gatherings, Dune Peninsula at Point Defiance Park is 11 acres of newly landscaped park property on the breakwater peninsula surrounding the Tacoma Yacht Club boat basin. It is a unique location with an unparalleled perspective on both the bay and the sky above. Visit the Dune Peninsula.

Father’s Day Shopping Saturday

Father's Day Raffle 2022 at Waterfront Market at Ruston
Father's Day Raffle 2022 at Waterfront Market at Ruston

This Saturday, while shopping for dad (Father’s Day is Sunday!) every time you make a purchase at Waterfront Market at Ruston, you can enter to win a Dad Gift Basket! Lot’s of great products that any dad would enjoy. Great gifts from Owens Meats, Black Fleet Brewing, Eco Repurpose Boutique, Shugies, Purple Peacock, Tea Madame, West Coast Laser Design, Love Laura and Natures Needles! 

Raffle results will be on Saturday at 6pm, just in time for Father’s Day! 

Shop for dad this weekend while supporting local Tacoma businesses and artists! See you at the market!

Father's Day Raffle 2022 at Waterfront Market at Ruston

Point Ruston Area Monthly Parking Available

Covered parking at Waterfront Market in Ruston Washington
Covered parking at Waterfront Market in Ruston Washington

Covered and Gated Parking in the Point Ruston Area

MONTHLY PARKING: Demand was high and Waterfront Market at Ruston has only a few monthly parking spaces still available. These gated, covered and incredibly convenient monthly parking spaces are going fast and once they are gone, there will be a long waiting list. Waterfront Market at Ruston has one of the cleanest parking garages in the Tacoma area. To learn more about the spaces, contact our parking manager via the link below: 

Monthly Parking Form

Mother’s Day Shopping in Tacoma: We Have Your Back

Shopping for Mother's Day in Tacoma at Waterfront Market at Ruston
Shopping for Mother's Day in Tacoma at Waterfront Market at Ruston

Mother’s Day gift shopping can be tough. Finding that perfect gift for mom is something we all struggle with…until now. Waterfront Market at Ruston has lots of great unique, thoughtful and useful gifts for mom, so many in fact, we can’t list them all here. 

With over 30 vendors, all with different tastes, styles and backgrounds, that unique gift is sitting right here, waiting to be found. Most of the products you will find are locally sourced and when purchasing from our local vendors, you are supporting small business in the Tacoma area which is the backbone of our economy

Here is just a taste of the unique gift ideas for Mother’s Day here at Waterfront Market at Ruston:

Marcus Harper GlassWorks

Unique handmade works of art for mom.

West Coast Laser Design

Personalized products for mom.

Eco Repurpose Boutique

Dally Leather

Onsite Saturday and Sunday Offering 10% off for moms.

Dewdrop’s Perch

International Women’s Day 2022

International Women's Day at Waterfront Market at Ruston
International Women's Day Logo
Waterfront Market at Ruston

A market is only as good it’s vendors and many of our vendors here at the Waterfront Market are female owned and operated.

Today is International Women’s Day and the Waterfront Market at Ruston wanted to give a wholehearted shout out to all of our woman owned businesses. Without your strong leadership, incredible market insights, business savviness and incredible products, the Waterfront Market would not be what it is today.

International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. Significant activity is witnessed worldwide as groups come together to celebrate women’s achievements or rally for women’s equality. This year’s theme is about breaking the bias, working towards a world that is free of bias, stereotypes and discrimination. 

Below are just some of Waterfront Market’s women owned businesses and some stories, bios and offerings celebrating the International Women’s Day 2022:

Taco Street Owner - Elonka Perez

Elonka Perez – Taco Street

“Being a Woman in business has many challenges and obstacles. I find inspiration from all the talented & extremely devoted women around me. Success never comes easy, and these women never give up. With each challenge that lays in front of us I witness resolve and determination to achieve the goals we’ve set.  Balancing motherhood, personal life, and the desire to reach new heights in business has been the adventure of a lifetime and I hope that I’ve been able to show my daughter and all the other ladies along the way that there are no limits and only opportunities.

I would be nothing if it weren’t for the amazing team of women that I work with daily. Thank you all so much for all you’ve taught me along the way. “

Black Fleet Brewing

Laura Byce – Black Fleet Brewing

“This weekend Black Fleet Brewing will be featuring Thea legacy at the market place .  This American wheat ale originally brewed with Tammy Trinkle and Deidre Foss the great great great granddaughter of Thea Foss.  Thea’s Legacy is an American wheat ale brewed with cherry blossoms and rose petals.  It’s dedicated it to Thea Foss for her entrepreneurship well as her Contribution to the Tacoma community and women throughout our nation.  Tammy Trinkle was a pioneer in her own right as well as one of the few women who help build the Tacoma Dome, she contributed and broke barriers for women throughout our area.  Available in 32 ounce and 16 ounce cans this brew is so popular we bring it back every year in celebration of women everywhere.  Black Fleet Brewing is a woman owned business.  Today (Tuesday) Caitlyn Byce and Kyle Maxwell will be brewing a hibiscus brew which will be available for Mother’s Day.”

Pashmina Palace Owner

Annika Jones – Pashmina Palace

Annika Jones is the owner of Pashmina Palace, a clothing brand at the Waterfront Market at Ruston. Annika is local designer that “wanted to work with women and make them feel beautiful”.  She has been at the Waterfront Market since the very beginning. After viewing the location for the first time, she knew this is where she wanted her business and loves the community aspect of working at the market. Annika is not only an immigrant, but an orphan as well. Annika mentioned that one trait she feels is most important for female business owners is perseverance and never giving up.

 

LaDonna Olmstead – Tea Madame

LaDonna is one of our newest female business owners at the Waterfront Market. Her business, Tea Madame is a one stop shop for anything tea related and is HIGHLY rated by her customers. She is one of the local authorities on tea and is a certified tea educator and has a total of three stores. Driven: That’s a word I would use to describe LaDonna. Her vision required her to be 100% in charge, she needed to be in control. It’s her vision, focus and the ability to execute that is making Tea Madame a very sought-after brand name in the tea industry. She only does business here in Peirce County and love the local Tacoma community. She is launching some tea tasting classes here at the market. These educational classes are super popular amongst the tea community.  

Lilly - Sunflower Soul Apothecary

Lilly Laurore – Sunflower Soul Apothecary

“Hi My name is Lily I own and operate Sunflower Soul Apothecary formerly known as Sage Onyx Soapery. I am proud to be an International women of color and women veteran. My business creates natural and artisan style soaps, aromatherapy and provide spiritual wellness items.”

Eco Repurpose Boutique

Norma Irish – Eco Repurpose Boutique

Eco Repurpose Boutique is owned and operated by Norma Irish a U. S. Army Veteran and minority women. Our mission is to find unique products that are eco friendly, cruelty free, made by people that are treated with respect and paid a livable wage. Our motto, “Recycling in a fashionable way!””

If you are woman business owner and looking for a vendor location for your local business, please reach out to us, we would love to see what you have to offer the Waterfront Market at Ruston.

Bring Your Dog

Bring Your Dog

We love it when our visitors bring there little pups to the market! The Ruston waterfront is a great place to walk your dog. Swing by the market and make a day of it! We also have a number of pet vendors. Come find that perfect gift for your doggo!

You find water dishes around the market for when your pups get thirsty. While you are at the market with you pet, be sure to check out our pet-focused vendors and pick up a treat for the doggo!