Around You

The PLU campus is nestled in a quiet neighborhood located seven miles south of Downtown Tacoma. Although the campus is virtually self-contained there is also much to see and do nearby. The locally-famed business district on Garfield Street is immediately outside the doors of PLU, offering your guests an eclectic mix of everything form the basic everyday services to some of the most sought after restaurants in Pierce County. Or, if you are feeling more like venturing outside of our quaint neighborhood, you will find world renowned sights and activities within a short drive of the campus.

Karen Hille Philips Center for the Performing Arts
Karen Hille Philips Center for the Performing Arts
Garfield Street Fair - student holding water balloons
Garfield Street Fair

Garfield Street

The street leading into the center of the PLU campus is known as Garfield Street. It has long been a beloved, off-the-beaten path community favorite for dining and shopping. Its quaintness and eclectic, college-district feel have drawn many destination retail shops and restaurants over the years.

If you’re hungry for unique cuisine, Garfield street is the place to go. There are many different ethnic varieties available with choices from casual lunch spots to the five-star feature variety such as the Garfield Street anchor tenant Marzano Italian Restaurant.

The artistic and recently re-opened Northern Pacific Coffee Company is one of Garfield Street’s oldest hot spots to hang out and new real estate developments have attracted geographical favorites like Farrelli’s Wood Fired Pizza and PLU owned 208 Garfield.

In addition, the Garfield Street Business Association often hosts events on the street. Be sure to ask the conference staff for information about the current Garfield Street scene while you are visiting.

Out and About

The geographical region surrounding PLU is quite unique. For the outdoors enthusiast it offers everything from water to mountain treks, all close enough to reach within an hours drive or less. If you’re an urbanite who loves the feeling of community interaction, we are close to cultural entertainment mecca such as Tacoma and Olympia. Even a visit to downtown Seattle is only a 45 minute drive north.

Everything you could imagine wanting to do in your spare time is all a few short miles away from the PLU campus. From museums, theaters and galleries in downtown Tacoma to non-stop events at the Western Washington Fairgrounds in Puyallup, to open-air wildlife experiences at Northwest Trek or the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, or driving up to Mt. Rainier for a great nature visit, you’re sure to find something just for you.

Should you have more questions about local attractions or event going on during your conference, feel free to ask our conference staff for more detailed information or visit our local Visitor and Convention Bureau.

Downtown Tacoma with Mt. Rainier in the background
Tacoma with Mount Rainier in the background.