The Capitol Theatre

Venue and Guest Information

The Capitol Theatre is wheelchair accessible, and limited wheelchair seating is available on the orchestra level of the theatre. An elevator designed for handicapped patrons is available between the orchestra level and the lower level only. Restrooms are located on the lower level. 

Students are to request wheelchair seating on their Graduation Application to reserve limited seating on a first-come, first-serve basis. Additional seating is available in the 4th Street Theatre for viewing via live streaming if requests exceed orchestra level seating. 

Children are welcome at the ceremony, but out of respect for others in the theatre, PNWU is providing a children's area on the lower level. A family member must remain with the child at all times, as the children's play area is not supervised. The ceremony will be available for viewing in the children's area via live streaming.

If you are participating in commencement as a guest hooder, click here.

Travel and Driving Direction

Guests should allow ample time to find parking and avoid congestion in the downtown area on graduation day. The doors will open at 1:00 p.m. Please note that the southbound lane of 4th Street is closed for construction between Yakima Avenue and Chestnut Avenue.

  • By Plane: Yakima Air Terminal (YKM) is a commuter airport.  Connections are via Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and provided by Horizon/Alaska Air.
  • By Bus: Greyhound buses arrive into and depart from Yakima daily.  The Yakima Greyhound station is located at 202 S 5th Ave, Yakima WA 98902. 
  • By Car: Yakima is located along Interstate 82, approximately 143 miles southeast of Seattle, 204 miles southwest of Spokane, and 80 miles northwest of the Tri-Cities (Richland-Kennewick-Pasco).
    • From Seattle, take I-90 East to the I-82 off ramp, Exit 110 and travel approximately 25 miles. 
    • From Spokane, take I-90 West until exit 110, I-82 East, and travel for approximately 25 miles.
    • From Tri-Cities, take I-82 West until exit 33. Merge onto East Yakima Avenue.

A scenic alternative route from the Ellensburg region is the Old Canyon Highway, SR 821, a two-lane road that winds through the Yakima River gorge between Exits 3 and 26, bypassing the interstate over the mountain ridges. During the daytime, the views are lovely and there are several spots midway to stop, fish, and even camp. 

  • Directions to the Capitol Theatre: Coming from the north (Ellensburg) I-82 South: Take the Yakima Avenue Exit 33B. Turn right at the top of the exit and follow E. Yakima Avenue to South Third Street. Coming from the south (Sunnyside/Tri-Cities) I-82 North: Take the Yakima Avenue Exit 33 and stay left toward Yakima Avenue. Continue on E. Yakima Avenue to South Third Street.
  • Parking: Parking at the Capitol Theatre is in public lots located on Third Street between W. Yakima Avenue and E. Chestnut Avenue and on North 2nd Street between E. Yakima Avenue and East "A" Street.  There is also street parking available.