Recent local blog posts

Masterworks Choral Ensemble Presents: Mistletunes & Songflakes

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 9:42pm


Submitted by Masterworks Choral Ensemble

Masterworks Choral Ensemble continues its 35th Anniversary Season with yes, you read it right, Mistletunes and Songflakes.  A memorable title for a holiday concert confection including music about fruitcake and, of course, chestnuts roasting on an open fire.  Not to mention selections from “The Polar Express” and “Frozen” and, in keeping with the season, gospel harmonies and timeless messages of thankfulness, peace, joy and love for every day of the year.  Masterworks performs December 5 at 7:30pm at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts.

Musical selections promise a rollicking holiday party for the entire family, including the opening musical number from the Disney animated feature “Frozen”, a song inspired by indigenous Saami and Norwegian culture.  A fantastic arrangement of “Believe” from “The Polar Express” evokes images of children sleeping and snow softly falling, and a lovely song by the artist Enya, “Amid the Falling Snow”, sets the perfect mood for the holiday with layered harmonies and gentle chords.

The choir performs old classics as well as compositions destined to become classics.  “Feliz Navidad”, famous for generations and driving with Latin/pop energy, and “I Wish you Christmas”, an uplifting Christmas carol by the incomparable British composer and conductor, John Rutter, founder of The Cambridge Singers, are two examples.

And don’t forget the “Fruitcake”!  A choral favorite that has been around for 50 years, the lifespan of some gift fruitcakes, it’s a wacky musical recipe, adding the ingredients for a sumptuous fruitcake one by one.  Santa is coming for a visit – and there’s going to be snow! (Just outside the Center). Your Christmas stocking will overflow with fun, family Holiday classics and new Christmas treasures.

The concert includes a performance by Martha Nguyen on piano, a student at Garfield Elementary School.  Ms. Nguyen won MCE’s Youth Music Competition in the Elementary School Category.

And don’t forget to join us at 6:00 PM to participate in our annual Holiday Silent Auction, where you will be guaranteed to find special and unique items perfect for the season. New this year – a wreath raffle, a “Wine Pull” and a “Buy-It-Now” Board.

The concert begins at 7:30pm. Tickets for the December concert are $25 for adults, $21 for Seniors, and $14 for Students, and are on sale now. You may purchase tickets online at Masterworks secure website, as well as at the Washington Center Box Office, 512 Washington Street SE, Olympia, 360-753-8586, or online via the Washington Center’s website:

For more information contact: Sally Alhadeff; 360-349-3635;

Adopt-A-Pet Dog of the Week

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 9:29pm


Submitted by Adopt-A-Pet of Shelton

Millie is a 6-8 year old spayed, female Labrador Retriever mix. Millie is a super happy girl, her tail is always wagging and she squirms with joy when she sees you. Millie knows some of the basic obedience commands and looks for approval. This sweet girl is ready to find her very own home where she can become a loyal member of your family

We have many great dogs and always need volunteers.  To see all our current dogs, visit , our Facebook at “Adopt-A-Pet of Shelton Washington” or at the shelter on Jensen Road in Shelton.  Our contact information is or contact us at or (360) 432-3091.

2015-16 “Grand Slam” Book Drive a Record Breaker

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 5:42pm


Submitted by the South Sound Reading Foundation

South Sound students collected 13,686 children’s books during the South Sound Reading Foundation’s annual Grand Slam Book Drive. This breaks 2009’s previously held record of 12,793! Congratulations are in order for all participating schools, but as a reward for collecting the most new and gently used books, Chambers Prairie Elementary students will be visited by the Mariner Moose for a Grand Slam Literacy Assembly. For collecting the most books per student, Griffin Schools wins an Ice Cream Social for 100 students.

Donated books will be distributed to low-income children, youth and families in Thurston and Mason counties through the Foundation’s literacy programs and through partnerships they have with other programs, organizations and services serving low-income families.

“We’d like to thank all twenty schools that participated in this year’s Grand Slam Book Drive,” says new Books Coordinator, Ellen Jilek. “Kids, librarians, and teachers alike, we appreciate each and every one of your book donations! This will help us meet our community’s need for books and free literacy programming.”

The South Sound Reading Foundation is a nonprofit organization that promotes early childhood and community literacy in Thurston and Mason counties.  SSRF accepts gently used and new children’s books year-round.  Donations can be dropped off at 305 College St. NE in Lacey.  For more information about our organization, programs, and volunteer opportunities, please call (360) 412-4585, e-mail or visit our website at

Participating Schools:

  • Chambers Prairie       3145
  • Griffin School            2533
  • Michael T. Elem.        1380
  • Lincoln Elem.            1306
  • Seven Oaks Elem.     1096
  • Horizons Elem.           992
  • South Bay Elem.         933
  • Komachin MS             506
  • Ridgeline MS              383
  • Lakes Elem.               325
  • Tenino MS                 238
  • Pleasant Glade           229
  • River Ridge HS           209
  • North Thurston HS      161
  • Rainier School District   65
  • Mill Pond Elem.             64
  • Capital HS                    53
  • Bush MS                      47
  • Evergreen Elem.           21

Sister Marina Exchanges Benefit Business, Promote Friendship

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 5:32pm


Submitted by Port of Olympia

Swantown’s Bruce Marshall (far right) participated in the sake ceremony honoring  Shin-Nishinomiya’s 20th anniversary in early October.   Swantown’s Bruce Marshall (far right) participated in the sake ceremony honoring
Shin-Nishinomiya’s 20th anniversary in early October.

Port Harbor Director Bruce Marshall was working side by side with marina and boatyard staff at Shin-Nishinomiya Yacht Harbor, Hyogo Prefecture, in early October.

“I was struck by how similar our marinas are,” said Marshall, “We share common goals, concerns and challenges.”

Marshall was surprised and thrilled when his Japanese counterparts invited him to join state and local dignitaries in celebrating the Japanese yacht harbor’s 20th anniversary. Leading the celebration were the Governor of Hyogo Prefecture, Minister of Finance, Minister of Tourism, and the Mayor.

“The sake ceremony was an important part of the event,” said Marshall. “It even called for special attire.”

A few weeks later, Shin-Nishinomiya Yacht Harbor Moorage Coordinator Mariko Kobayashi toured the Swantown facilities by water and land and examined marina operations. Swantown staff will always remember hearing Kobayashi talk about her responsibility to ensure no moorage for Japanese mafia vessels.

Senator Karen Fraser escorted Kobayashi on a grand tour of the Capital City. Senator Fraser has worked tirelessly on developing the Washington’s Sister State relationship with Hyogo Prefecture. The creation of the Sister Marina Agreement is also largely a result of the Senator’s efforts.

Naoya Nakadete, the Port’s first guest in the Sister  Marina exchange, tours the Boatworks with Marine  Services Supervisor Nathan Saline in October 2014.Naoya Nakadete, the Port’s first guest in the Sister
Marina exchange, tours the Boatworks with Marine
Services Supervisor Nathan Saline in October 2014.

The first participant in the marina exchange program was Naoya Nakadete, Shin-Nishinomiya Yacht Harbor’s Assistant Manager. In October 2014, Nakadete and Swantown staff covered everything from on-dock operations to financial systems, Security Vessel to Travel-Lift, ending the day with fish stories and beer.

The Port Commission hosted a luncheon welcoming Nakadete and honoring Senator Fraser. Representing Hyogo Prefecture was Norihisa Mizuguchi, executive director of Hyogo Business & Cultural Center, Seattle.

The Sister Marina Agreement was established during the 50th Anniversary celebration of the Sister State relationship between Hyogo Prefecture, Japan, and Washington State in August 2013. The Port was proud to have Swantown Marina & Boatworks selected for the Sister Marina relationship, which is believed to be the first for both countries.

The goals of the Hyogo Prefecture and Port of Olympia Sister Marina Agreement include:

  • Technical exchange for the development of services, operations, and facilities;
  • Sharing of knowledge and activities that promote environmental stewardship to improve sustainability and innovation; and
  • Cultural exchange to promote mutual understanding and further relations between the citizens of Japan and the United States.

Give the Gift of Experience

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 5:08pm


Submitted by Harlequin Productions

Research indicates that experiences make us happier than things do. Gifts of experience, of adventure, of time spent together, encourage us to connect rather than get lost in a sea of packaged products. Year after year, we amass things on top of things, many of which keep us staring at one screen or another. Not only is giving something non-physical a thumbs up for Mother Earth, it’s a way to give each other something much more valuable than anything you could possibly wrap. It can mean having a blast with friends, a romantic escape, or invaluable quality time with family. And with cherished memories to share, gifts of experience keep on giving.

It can be hard to think of fun experience-based gifts, so below are a few great ideas right here in Thurston County to get your wheels turning.

 Shanna Paxton PhotographyPhoto credit: Shanna Paxton Photography

Take in a Film

Formed in 1980, the Olympia Film Society’s mission is “to enliven and enrich our community by presenting and fostering the development of independent and underrepresented film, music and allied arts.” Based out of the beautiful Capitol Theater in downtown Olympia, OFS presents a variety of events that would make terrific experience-based gifts for that arts-lover you know.

Visit them online to learn more at

hocmHands On Children’s Museum is truly an unforgettable hands-on experience for children.

Get Your Hands Dirty

Settled in their new, beautiful location in downtown Olympia, The Hands On Children’s Museum is the premier provider of hands-on science and art education in the South Sound. The museum has awesome activities happening in November and December, as well as a plethora of exciting exhibits and galleries year-round. This experience should bring a smile to the young or young at heart.

Check out the museum at or give them a call at 360-956-0818 for more information.

harlequin productionsThe Stardust cast is serving you memories from the late 1950s. Photo courtesy: Harlequin Productions.

Set the Stage for Fun

Harlequin Productions is currently celebrating its 25th anniversary season. Situated in the beautiful State Theater in downtown Olympia, the company provides a unique live theater experience you won’t forget. For fans of comedies, musicals, dramas, and even improv, the Harlequin gorgeous stage has it all. When was the last time you gave someone a gift that ended with them on their feet cheering?

Harlequin offers gift certificates in any amount you choose. Call 360-786-0151 or visit to get the theatrical adventure started.

Panel on Contemporary Native American Art featuring Wendy Red Star, John Feodorov, Sara Siestreem, and Corwin Clairmont: Wednesday, December 9th, 11:00-1:00 pm in the 2nd floor Recital Hall of the COM Building

Evergreen Artists Lecture Series - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 5:07pm


Wendy Red Star is an artist living and working in Portland, Oregon. Red Star received her B.F.A. from Montana State University-Bozeman and her M.F.A from UCLA in 2006. She has exhibited both nationally and internationally. Her exhibitions include shows at the Fondation Cartier pour l’Art Contemporain, Hallie Ford Museum, The Eiteljorg Contemporary Art Fellowship 2009, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Missoula Art Museum, St. Louis Art Museum, National Museum of the American Indian-New York, Portland Art Museum, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bockley Gallery, and Haw Contemporary gallery. She has been a visiting lecturer at a range of respected institutions, including The Banff Centre, CalArts, National Gallery of Victoria (Melbourne), Portland State University, Dartmouth Hood Museum, Figge Art Museum, Fairhaven College, Fine Artworks Center-Provincetown, and I.D.E.A. Space-Colorado College.


john feodorov with sharkflute150Born in Los Angeles of mixed Navajo (Diné) and Euro-American heritage, John Feodorov grew up in the suburbs of Southern California while making annual visits to his family’s land near Whitehorse, NM. The time he spent with his mother and grandparents on their homestead near the Anasazi ruins at Chaco Canyon continues to inform and impact his work.

John has been called a conceptual artist, a political artist, as well as a Native American artist, but he is still not sure how to define what he does. His work includes painting, drawing, assemblage, installation, video, music and songwriting. He also has engaged in experimental performance in the past, but not lately. Currently, he writes and performs with his art/pop band, The Almost Faithful.

John’s work as been widely exhibited and has been featured in several publications; most recently in Time and Time Again, by Lucy R. Lippard, and Manifestations, edited by Dr. Nancy Marie Mithlo.  He was also featured in the first season of the PBS  series, “Art 21: Art for the 21st Century”.

John has also worked with the Seattle-based afterschool arts program, Artscorps, and served as an Arts Commissioner for the City of Seattle. He is currently an Associate Professor of Art at Fairhaven College.



Sara Siestreem (Hanis Coos and American, 1976-) is from the Umpqua River Valley in South Western Oregon. She grew up in Portland, Oregon. She is a Master Artist and Educator. She comes from a family of professional artists and educators and her training in both fields began in the home. Siestreem graduated Phi Kappa Phi with a BS from PSU in 2005. She earned an MFA with distinction from Pratt Art Institute in 2007. Siestreem is the weaving student of Greg Archuleta, Greg Robinson, and Nan MacDonald. She is represented by Augen Gallery in Portland and her work has been shown in museums and figures in prestigious private and public collections nationally.

Her studio work is multi-disciplinary. Her primary language is painting, but she also works in photography, printmaking, drawing, sculpture, video, and traditional weaving.

She teaches Foundations in Studio Arts and Indigenous Studies at PSU and Traditional Weaving Practices for The Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians. She works as a consultant and free lance educator for museums and cultural groups regionally. Siestreem also serves various youth organizations and individuals in the role of mentor, workshop leader, promoter, public speaker and volunteer.

She lives and works exclusively in the arts in Portland, Oregon.


Corwin (Corky) Clairmont is a contemporary artist and enrolled member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.   Living in Los Angeles, Corky  pursued a contemporary exhibiting artist career as well as teaching and becoming department head of  printmaking at the Otis/Parsons Art Institute located in Los Angeles, Ca. Upon his return to Montana in 1984, Corky began administrative work at the newly credited Salish Kootenai College located in Pablo, Montana on the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Reservation.  This included the creation of the SKC  Fine Arts Department and art degree program. Through work as a printmaker, conceptual and installation artist, Corky’s images   discuss and explore situations or issues that effect tribal people such as sovereignty, colonization, giving a cultural and historical perspective.   Corky’s artwork has been exhibited through out the United States and in several Countries including Germany Norway, New Zealand, France, and most recently at the US Embassy located in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, Africa.  Awards have included Ford and National Endowment of the Arts, the Eiteljorg Fellowship Award, and the 2008 Montana Governors Award for Visual Arts.  He currently serves on the State Board of the Montana Arts Council.



Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Fiesta in December – Steamboat Island Coop Preschool’s Annual Fundraiser

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 3:37pm


Submitted by Bagel Brothers

“My favorite part of Steamboat Island Cooperative Preschool is that every parent is required to do a couple of days a month of in-class time,” says mom Abbie Rose. “On my volunteer days I get to see my daughter Paisley interact with her peers in a way that’s different than any other play I see her engage in. It gives me a better idea of who she is as a person when I see her play with a big group of kids her age, it’s pretty cool.”

Steamboat Coop Preschool 3Parents of kids at the preschool know this feeling well. Since 1972 the preschool has been nurturing children, parents, and caregiver relationships through an emphasis on nature and creative art, movement, and music. Kiddos ages 2-5 thrive in the community environment, with special support from South Puget Sound Community College.

This local involvement is perhaps one reason why a variety of businesses are donating time, services, products, funding, and more to Steamboat Island Coop Preschool’s yearly auction. Rose, who also owns Bagel Brothers, and who attended the preschool as a child, feels proud to support the next generation by donating, and helping put the auction on.

“I love using skills that I’ve learned in the business world to benefit a local nonprofit,” she said.

Steamboat Coop Preschool 2Dozens of business, local and beyond, are donating to the fiesta food-fun part of the event, including Steamboat Grill and Greens, Jalisco Tortillas, Chelsea’s Shellfish, Olympic Mountain Ice Cream, and more.

Event highlights also include arts and crafts for the kids, and a silent auction with many items donated from local businesses.

The event takes place Saturday, December 5, at Griffin Elementary. Festivities start at 6 p.m. Open to the public, tickets are $15 and include dinner and dessert. Tickets can be purchased ahead of time by calling 360.866.1819, or purchased at the door. All proceeds benefit Steamboat Island Coop Preschool.


Downtown Olympia Visitors Celebrate the Holiday Season

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 11:54am



The holiday season kicked off with visitors and residents shopping in downtown Olympia during Small Business Saturday.  The action then shifted to a parade, tree lighting and other festive activities during Downtown for the Holidays on Sunday, November 29. Find even more things to do this holiday season on our events calendar.

#td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item1 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item2 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item3 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item4 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item5 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item6 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item7 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item8 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item9 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item10 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item11 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item12 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item13 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item14 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item15 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item16 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item17 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item18 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item19 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item20 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item21 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item22 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item23 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item24 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item25 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item26 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item27 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item28 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item29 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item30 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item31 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item32 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item33 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item34 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item35 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item36 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item37 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item38 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item39 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item40 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item41 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item42 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item43 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item44 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item45 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item46 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item47 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item48 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item49 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item50 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item51 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } #td_uid_1_565d61a323fe4 .td-doubleSlider-2 .td-item52 { background: url( 0 0 no-repeat; } Downtown for the Holidays 1 of 52

Ring in the Holiday Season During Providence St. Peter Foundation’s Christmas Forest

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 10:40am


After a busy Thanksgiving week of turkey feasts and shopping small, families across Thurston County are just starting to think about how they will trim their Christmas trees this year.

However, as families head to local u-cut farms and begin hauling down dusty ornaments from the attic, one group of local designers has already put the finishing touches on their Christmas display.

Now in its 28th year, Christmas ForestProvidence St. Peter Foundation’s largest fundraising event — continues to be a favorite way for local families to ring in the start of the holiday season.

Christmas Forest 2016 Dashing Through the SnowChristmas Forest tree designers gathered the weekend after Thanksgiving (November 28 – 29) to bring their visions to life.

A dazzling display of lights, ornaments and clever accents, designers are already thinking about their trees for next year — that’s how much time and planning goes into an event like this.

Designer Ashley McBride says the process starts about a year in advance. “Designers will typically start planning for the following year right after Christmas, when all the decorations and ornaments go on sale.” Each designer is given a budget to work with, so a good sale can help stretch those dollars further.

In her fifth year designing trees for Christmas Forest, Ashley says that the event is very sentimental. Growing up, attending Christmas Forest with her family was an annual tradition for Ashley.

Christmas Forest 2016 Dashing Through the SnowEnjoy creative displays of festive whimsy and fun during this year’s Christmas Forest.

But Ashley has a unique perspective that not all other designers share. As a critical care nurse for Providence St. Peter Hospital, Ashley is also able to see firsthand the benefit Christmas Forest’s Fund-A-Need has on the community. “The foundation’s ability to identify the best need for the community each year is spot on,” Ashley says. “And the Fund-A-Need this year is very appropriate.”

This year, proceeds from Christmas Forest go toward building a community care center designed to help Thurston County’s most vulnerable residents.

Like Ashley, designer Darla Krug also recognizes the importance of the Fund-A-Need. Darla is a former labor and delivery nurse and her husband is a surgeon at Providence St. Peter Hospital.

This is why when Darla left her job to be a stay-at-home mom, she knew she had to find some way to give back to her community. Wanting to support the hospital and the local medical community, Darla volunteered to serve on the foundation’s Gala Auction Committee eight years ago.

Christmas Forest 2016 Dashing Through the SnowThis Misfit Christmas tree is celebrating the 50th anniversary of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”

The more time Darla spent volunteering, the more she wanted to contribute. Darla’s friend and fellow volunteer Cheryl Reeser felt the same and suggested that the two design a tree together.

“This year will be our fifth tree,” Darla says. In addition to getting to exercise her creativity and help spread some holiday cheer, Darla knows how much her tree benefits the community — and that’s why she keeps coming back, year after year.

This year, Christmas Forest takes place at Red Lion Hotel in Olympia from Wednesday, December 2 through Sunday, December 6, with four public viewing days, Ladies Night Out, and Friday’s signature Gala Dinner and Auction — Providence St. Peter Foundation’s premier fundraising event.

Christmas Forest 2016 Dashing Through the SnowKate Spade was the inspiration for this New Year’s Eve-themed tree, Pop! Fizz! Clink!

Public viewing times take place Wednesday, December 2 from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.; Thursday, December 3 from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.; Saturday, December 5 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and Sunday, December 6 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Admission is $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and $1 for children ages 12 and younger.

In addition to the dazzling display of trees, Christmas Forest visitors will also enjoy live entertainment daily from local musicians and bands, as well as a visit from Santa on Saturday, December 5. Although, if you it’s more entertainment you seek, this year’s Christmas Forest programming offers two ways to kick up your heels.

Grab your girlfriends — on Wednesday, December 2 from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., enjoy sipping, snacking and shopping your way through the forest during this ladies only event. (Registration is required.)

Christmas Forest 2016 Dashing Through the SnowTery Bodette (center) has been designing trees for Christmas Forest for 27 years.

Then on Friday, December 4, get your paddles ready to bid during the Gala Dinner and Auction. That evening, gala-goers are invited to eat, sip and bid on a variety of wreath, trees and specialty items, and support this year’s Fund-A-Need, which you can learn more about in this article published earlier last week on ThurstonTalk. Tickets for this formal event must be purchased in advance online.

Round-up the family and kick start the holidays all while supporting the health and vitality of your community during Christmas Forest, Wednesday December 2 through Sunday, December 6 at Red Lion Hotel, located at 2300 Evergreen Park Drive SW, Olympia.

For more information — including a full calendar of live entertainment —visit Christmas Forest online.

2015 Holiday Happenings and Events in Olympia, Tumwater and Lacey

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 6:00am


VCB logoThe Thanksgiving leftovers are safely tucked in the fridge (my favorite part of the holiday) and our focus now shifts from pumpkins and turkey to mistletoe and snow. And while we all celebrate this season in different ways, we can also find ways to celebrate together.

Our community offers a host of opportunities to gather, rejoice, sing, and be merry. While some occasions are quiet and serious, others invite the laughter and joy of children (and adults). Whether you are looking to play inside or out, engage in activities quiet or loud, snap selfies or let the pros handle the photos, our list will supply just the right recipe for holiday fun.

Menorah and Tree Lightings christmas treeThe Capitol Rotunda Christmas tree lighting is on December 4. Holiday Theater Performances The Stardust series is a local holiday favorite and the 2014 production saw record ticket sales and sell-out shows.The Stardust series is a local holiday favorite and the 2014 production saw record ticket sales and sell-out shows. Music and Concerts olympia choral societyThe Olympia Choral Society will perform a free holiday concert. Santa Sightings and Photos A visit to Santa is a highlight for any family.A visit to Santa is a highlight for any family. Community and Family Fun santa events olympiaSanta stands near his train in Elbe, Washington aboard the Mount Rainier Scenic Railroad. Photo courtesy Douglas Scott.

New STEM Program Ignites Learning at River Ridge High School

Thurston Talk - Mon, 11/30/2015 - 6:00am


Containing the excitement in his classroom is McCurdy Jones’s biggest challenge. “I don’t really have to motivate the students,” he says. “They’re engaged. Now it’s a matter of making sure that engagement doesn’t supersede the limits of what’s safe.”

river ridge stem classesRiver Ridge High School students get plenty of hands-on experience through STEM classes.

Jones teaches Robotics, Electronics, Construction Skills and Manufacturing Technology at River Ridge High School. His classes are a new addition this year, part of an overall emphasis on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) that also includes Sports Medicine, which is taught by Head Athletic Trainer and teacher Stephanie Hjortedal.

The classes are hands-on, applicable to students’ lives and highly engaging, based on the response they’re getting.  “The way it’s set up and the way Ms. Hjortedal teaches isn’t like any other class that I’ve ever taken in high school,” says River Ridge senior Alecktre Kirby.  “It’s very interactive and there is a lot of information.”

river ridge stemRiver Ridge High School teacher McCurdy Jones (left) has pioneered several STEM classes.

The program was conceived at the district level in February, when North Thurston Public Schools administrators began adding classrooms and equipment that could facilitate STEM-based education. “It was a new initiative this year,” says Brad Hooper, director of the district’s Career and Technical Education (CTE) program. “We added four classrooms and a fabrication robotics lab. We also upgraded the woodshop construction area and the auto shop.”

river ridge stemStephanie Hjortedal’s Sports Medicine class has opened up new career possibilities for some students.

In the meantime, NTPS hired River Ridge principal Monica Sweet who jumped on board what Hooper calls a “fast-moving train.”  By the time she arrived, Sweet says “concepts were well-defined. We knew what the programs were going to be and we knew what the coursework was going to be. We had kids registered already by the time I came on board.”

What River Ridge High School didn’t yet have were teachers.  Fortunately, the two people they needed were already close at hand. Jones had been teaching math and technology at Reeves Middle School in East Olympia for eight years and knew Hooper, and Hjortedal was already an athletic trainer for after school sports at River Ridge. Both leapt at the opportunity to create a program from the ground up, even knowing how much work would be involved.

“A lot of stuff isn’t there, so it’s been great to collaborate with teachers from other schools that have programs,” says Jones. “Timberline has electronics so they have a lot of material there that I can start working on. Now I’ve got to customize it to my style of doing things.”

river ridge stemCuriosity drives learning in River Ridge High School’s STEM classes like robotics, electronics and construction skills.

For Hjortedal, the challenge has been learning a new field – teaching. “I have a lot of knowledge on the subject but I don’t have as much experience teaching,” she says. “My background is in athletic training but a lot of these kids are going to go into all kinds of health care fields so I want to keep it broad.”

Hjortedal’s hands-on approach seems to be working. Students can take her class for P.E. credit, as a partial science credit, or as a CTE credit.  “A lot of them are really excited about the opportunity, especially those kids that might not be athletes,” she says. “They can get to be a part of a world that they might not normally get to experience.”

That also means exposing them to new possibilities for career paths and confirming choices they have already made. “I was originally taking (Sports Medicine) just for a P.E. credit but it ended up being a really useful class,” says Kirby. Every student did a research project at the beginning of the semester on a role within the medical field, she explains. “I did mine on being a Licensed Practitioner Nurse, and I decided that was what I was going to do.”

river ridge stemStudent appreciate the applicable hands-on learning offered in the STEM classes at River Ridge High School.

Sophomore Isaiah Brumer was already clear that he wanted to be a physical therapist before he enrolled. “This is a really good starter class for anybody who wants to go into the medical field,” he says.

Beyond practical skills, students are also gaining less tangible benefits like critical thinking, problem solving, and teamwork. Breanna Smith is a junior taking introductory robotics. “I’m learning how to better work with a team,” she says. “It’s easy to work by yourself, especially on robotics projects, but having to compromise with people is a big part of it.”

Electronics and robotics classes mirror the real world, says senior Noah Francom. “Where often in school you’re supposed to get one right answer, in these classes it’s about whatever you can come up with. If it works, awesome. It doesn’t matter if it’s correct. It just has to work.”

river ridge stemInstructors look forward to River Ridge High School’s STEM classes becoming a model for the district and region.

That level of relevance and applicability matters more than ever, says Sweet. “Students are walking into jobs, occupations and fields of study that are different from the world we grew up in as educators,” she says. “We want them to know that there are post-secondary opportunities for them, particularly in the STEM field, probably the fastest-growing field out there.”

Hooper credits everyone involved with bringing the program together so quickly. “To make an initiative successful, you have to have all parties working and playing together,” he says. “The district has been phenomenal to work with. The teachers have been phenomenal and willing to work the extra hours, days, and weekends to get stuff done. It’s been wonderful to have it be so successful so fast.”

Eventually Hooper wants to both expand the program and make it replicable for other educators. “My goal is to make River Ridge High School a beacon of STEM not just for North Thurston Public Schools, but for the region.”

New Full Length Climate Documentary

OlyBlog Home Page - Sat, 11/28/2015 - 6:57pm

From today's inbox (courtesy of the Rocky Mountain Institute):

Starting at 9:30 am local time on Monday, November 30—and lasting for just 48 hours—is the unique opportunity to view Time to Choose, a feature-length documentary about climate change. Entertainment Weekly has praised it as "a smart, solution-oriented climate-change doc" while Variety lauded its "impeccable research" and "straight-talk structure."

The film is directed by Charles Ferguson, the same director behind the Oscar Award-winning 2010 documentary Inside Job, and can be viewed at The Huffington Post. This will make history as the first time a feature-length film has streamed at HuffPost. It will be viewable in the United States, Canada, and numerous other countries around the globe.

There is a website - at - and it offers you a chance to sign up for more info, but so far I don’t think that’s needed to see the film. If you just want to see it, it looks to me as if you can just go to the Huffington Post site Monday or Tuesday. logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

read more

Movie Junkies: Horror for the Holidays at the Midnight Sun Performance Space

OlyBlog Home Page - Sat, 11/28/2015 - 6:31pm

Need an escape from the holiday cheer? We will be kicking off our twice monthly Movie Junkies nights at the Midnight Sun just in time for Scary Christmas! We have picked out some of our favorite horror films to share with you.

Also in the spirit of giving, these movie nights will include a short or two to round out the evening; just like in the old logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

read more

Movie Junkies: Horror for the Holidays at the Midnight Sun Performance Space

OlyBlog Home Page - Sat, 11/28/2015 - 6:04pm
Event:  Tue, 12/01/2015 - 7:30pm - 10:00pm

Need an escape from the holiday cheer? We will be kicking off our twice monthly Movie Junkies nights at the Midnight Sun just in time for Scary Christmas! We have picked out some of our favorite horror films to share with you.

Also in the spirit of giving, these movie nights will include a short or two to round out the evening; just like in the old logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

read more

Slow but Steady Wins the Race

Sherwood Press - Sat, 11/28/2015 - 12:16pm

We’re now in high gear producing perks for our Indiegogo campaign and will start shipping several this coming week. We are nearly at $16,000 of our stretch goal of $19,000!

Our window restoration guy Dave King has taken measurements of the window, probed the wall below for rot, and is getting ready to start the process. It’s hard to believe that we can already get this important work done with the money raised so far. The campaign success also means that The Nutcracker tree can be safely and hopefully creatively removed.

Now we’re really dreaming that we can also install the french drain, repair the siding, and then paint next summer. Help us keep our campaign buoyed-up by sharing with your friends!

Visit our Indiegogo Campaign! Ends on December 14th!

Almost at $16,000! thank_you Poster Perk! Bonus Perk for all contributions $25 and over. Seaside Alphabet Notebook perk! Every contributor gets their name on a copper tag. Wood Type Monogram Notebook perk!
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Staged Reading of WRECKS at Tacoma Little Theatre

South Sound Arts - Sat, 11/28/2015 - 7:14am
For one night only, Tacoma Little Theatre will present Neil LaBute's Wrecks as a staged reading.

Wrecks is the story of a man coming to terms with the death of his wife, and the dark secret that brought them together. The revelations in his internal monologue are woven into his more general disapproving commentary on a culture too prone to public confession and emotional display. (What we, the audience, are hearing is what’s happening inside his head.) As befits a character whose story has parallels with a certain Greek myth, he speaks occasionally of the role of “the happenstance of life” and “the way the universe likes to play it.”

Tickets for the December 3 performance at 7:30 p.m. are $10.00 for non TLT Members, and FREE for those who are members. Tickets may be purchased online at, or by calling our Box Office at (253) 272-2281.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment

How Anchor Bank’s Downtown Clean-up Promotes Community and Deters Crime

Thurston Talk - Sat, 11/28/2015 - 6:00am



By Heidi Smith

anchor bankIn the afternoon of United Way’s Day of Caring, volunteers from Anchor Bank painted the alleyway near Bratdorf & Bronson.

If you went downtown for Arts Walk this fall, you may not have noticed the entire blocks in the heart of Olympia that were cleaner than normal – sidewalks swept, trash removed, landscapes tidied. But if you did notice, thank Anchor Bank. Their volunteer crew spent the morning cleaning up in preparation for the annual event as part of Thurston County United Way’s Day of Caring. Their contribution has both short-term and long-term impact, says Krosbie Carter, Development Coordinator at United Way.

“It’s really nice to be able to drive downtown and see something that people took ownership of, even something as small as sweeping a sidewalk,” she says.  “If someone comes downtown with their kids for Arts Walk, they’ll feel safer because that sidewalk is clean and it feels safer and it feels like a community space. That means families are more now apt to come downtown.”

The Day of Caring is a national event, with the local branch focused specifically on Thurston County. “It’s the largest day of volunteerism in the county,” says Carter. “Last year there were about 650 volunteers in the streets.” Through a workplace campaign, United Way pairs local businesses with non-profit volunteer opportunities. “The non-profits can get jobs done that they don’t normally have the resources to accomplish, which is really great,” she says.

anchor bankAnchor Bank and United Way believe that efforts to beautify downtown will ultimately make it more appealing to visitors and families.

Anchor Bank has participated for years, says AVP Branch Sales Manager, Melissa Stone. Just in the past four years, they completed a large painting project, revitalizing interior and exterior wall space at the Boys & Girls Club of Rochester, built a retaining wall at Bread & Roses, and stuffed weekend bags down at the Thurston County Food Bank for their backpack meal program. This year, they worked with the Olympia Downtown Association to beautify downtown in anticipation of the huge crowds that Arts Walk habitually draws. In the afternoon they painted an alleyway near Bratdorf & Bronson where the city will be installing LED lighting. This year Anchor Bank also sponsored the event.

Stone grew up in Olympia, and is familiar with both arts walk and the sometimes unsavory reputation of some neighborhoods. “I know the crowds that it draws of families and young artists,” she says. “I also know that downtown Olympia can come with a stigma of being an unsafe place, especially after the sun goes down. There has historically been drug use and crime in the alleys. The alleyway project is about giving the community a sense of security. We really freshened up the walls with bright blue and green paint. With the paint and the LED lighting, people can feel safe about being downtown at night.”

Studies of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) have demonstrated that projects as simple as painting the alleyway can act as a deterrent. “When one side of an alley has a mural and one does not, people aren’t writing graffiti on the walls that are painted,” says Stone. “They take ownership of the alley and think, ‘I’m not going to mess with that.’”

anchor bankThe Anchor Bank team cleaned up blocks in downtown Olympia in preparation for Fall Arts Walk.

While financial donations to United Way are extremely important, Carter appreciates the Day of Caring as an opportunity to connect volunteers and donors, particularly businesses, with a tangible result of their efforts. “It’s really nice for us be able to say, ‘Here’s something where you can actually see what you’ve done, what giving your time has done, the impact that it makes,’” she says. “That’s what’s great about the Day of Caring. It’s not just a monetary gift. It’s really an outcome.”

Anchor Bank has a long connection with United Way, says Carter. “When we do our workplace campaign, their company has historically matched every single gift that an employee makes, dollar for dollar. It shows that they are really committed to making the biggest impact they can as a company. This year they tripled their campaign of giving and had a huge support for Day of Caring. It makes us very proud when we have businesses like Anchor Bank that get involved. They gave their time and they gave their money to invest in the community.”

Such investment is a natural result of two factors, says Stone. First, Anchor Bank was originally established in Grays Harbor County as Aberdeen Federal Savings and Loan in 1907. “It was a local bank in a very small coastal community,” she says.  “We’ve grown to eleven branches but we’ll never get away from that community-based banking feel.” Second, the bank’s leadership actively encourages their employees to be get involved. “I’ve been with Anchor Bank for ten and a half years and there’s been a constant support for that, “she explains. “They get excited with me.”

On a personal level, says Stone, “I like volunteering and giving my time and my money to United Way because many times people want to volunteer and want to donate, but they don’t know how and where. United Way is connected with so many of these non-profits so they’re a perfect resource to match the desire with the need.”

That’s exactly what Carter has in mind. “We’re trying to connect the pieces of the puzzle in our community,” she says.  “We want to keep making it easy for people to find what they need and make it easy for non-profits to give people what they need. That’s where Anchor Bank and all of the people who are giving back come in. It really makes it a united community.”

For more information about Anchor Bank, visit or call 800.562.9744.

Mining Holiday Treasures at the Olympia Farmers Market

Thurston Talk - Sat, 11/28/2015 - 6:00am



Budd Bay cafe logoThe holiday season whooshes in as November days evaporate into December. Time speeds up (quite the opposite of my childhood). Whether your gift list is as long as Santa’s or short as a reindeer’s nose, I love the Olympia Farmers Market for handmade treasures and food that makes my heart warm and my stomach smile. Heed the suggestion of Anne Wellings, owner of Sunrise Beach Pottery and “shop early.”

The food and crafts at the Olympia Farmers Market are like a kaleidoscope – ever shifting and never exactly the same. Sunrise Beach Pottery dishes are unique, and what you find today may not be there tomorrow. Wellings has been supplying market shoppers with her pottery since 1994. Her colorful pieces are useful as well as beautiful.

olympia farmers marketSoup is always on with Mel O’Soup!

In case you’re shopping for me (I can hope), my inclinations for a satisfying present lean towards food. But, not any food. Market products are fresh, local and made with thoughtful attention. It’s easy to be busy these days, which makes prepared food ever more attractive, but you don’t have to give up your nutritional concerns.

Consider Mel O’Soup. Engaging and talented owner Mel Bilodeau gets creative in her kitchen. Self-described Soup Goddess, Mel is rolling out a new recipe this December – Luscious Sesame Potato. She’s titrating the exact right combination of toasted sesame oil, tahini, and Yukon Gold potatoes with a touch of apple cider vinegar and hints of sage and nutmeg. Her soups can be eaten right out of their containers, but you might want to take just a moment to heat them up! If it’s too thick for your taste preferences, add liquid. Mel O’Soup’s philosophy is that “it’s all about soup for you.” We are already deep into soup season, and she has several on hand for you to take home, share, or give away. This gift will save someone the time and effort of shopping, chopping and cooking. For up to the minutes news, check out Mel O’Soup’s Facebook page.

olympia farmers marketSmiling Lynn Villella will show you Basilico’s pasta and sauces to eat the comfort of your own home.

Johnson Berry Farm’s seasonal offering is Concord grape jam with or without habaneros. It’s a kick. The peppered jam will turn your leftover turkey into fabulous sandwiches. You’ll also find chocolate raspberry jam or syrup – sweets for your sweet ones.

Lynn Villella plays music at Basilico Ristorante on the weekends, but you can meet her standing with the fresh pasta and sauces during the day. New this year to the Olympia Farmers Market, Basilico puts its taste of Italy into jars and bags for you to take home. How’s your Italian? Try Sugo di Cinghiale in Bianco (wild boar), sugo divedure (vegetable sauce), or salsa di funghi marsala (you can guess that one.) All sauces are gluten free. Read the chalkboard for the daily specials. When I was there, one choice was Chitarrine de Nero di Seppia or squid ink guitar string pasta. Yes, it was black and square. Basilico pasta maker, Primo, crafts various flavored ravioli (like beet). They are frozen for you to use later. As the ingredient list says, every sauce contains a lot of love. I appreciate getting professional help with my meals anytime, and especially during the busy holiday season.

olympia farmers market giftsInhale the lavender luxuries made by Barbara Miller.

Give the gift of relaxing your senses with a stop at Miller Lavender and chat with Barbara Miller. She takes her homegrown lavender, dries it and makes sachets, pincushions and pillow inserts. She retired from North Thurston Public Schools and has been working at the Olympia Farmers Market for 11 years. She’ll be spending January, February and March with her sewing machine in efforts build up her supplies. “I love it,” she smiles. Miller appreciates meeting so many friendly people and sharing her lavender with tourists. When her private supply of lavender is harvested, she supplements it with lavender grown in other Washington locations. You won’t be eating Miller’s lavender, but you can take it to bed and dream with it. She keeps lavender in her bed – it works for her!

Honey Bear Farm has honey as usual, and you can also choose various candles, lip balms, eggs and more. More stocking stuffers are to be had at Backacher’s Emu Ranch, which features emu oil and related products. Jim Glick can tell you all about his emus and how his products work.

olympia farmers marketKaren Rogers of Honey Bear Farm adds to the sweetness and atmosphere of your holidays.

Pieces to Peaces has soft, colorful headbands in sizes from babies to large-headed adults. Give the gift of fashion. Looking for a piece of hand blown glass or art?

Ginger Street Studio makes its year-round home at the market. Owner Joe Carruti is the artist and his wife Laura handles the business side of things. Each piece would be a glistening addition to a holiday table or tree. Yet, there’s more. Gaze at the art to appreciate it in the form of metal sculptures or fine woodworking. It’s like a trip to a museum, but everything is for sale.

olympia farmers marketJim Johnson with daughter Elise have made seasonal berry specials.

During the summer my visits to the Olympia Farmers Market are focused on the fruits and vegetables. I usually take a loop around the whole area to remind myself that there’s much more to enjoy. When you take a winter visit, you’ll still find some produce, but everything else has a chance to shine. The parking is free and easy. There’s food galore if you brought your appetite. There’s often music. And you’ll surely see someone you know. Celebrate the joys of homemade and handmade. Whether you’re looking for gifts for other or for yourself – bring a bag. You’ll be delighted with a trove of treasures.

The Olympia Farmers Market is open from 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays in November and December.  For directions and more information, click here.

Eat Well – Be Well


Heal Your Skin Instead of Covering It Up at Rainier’s Face It Salon

Thurston Talk - Sat, 11/28/2015 - 5:39am


Every season of the year presents different challenges for your skin. The winter holiday rush often leads to stress, imperfect diet, late nights, and chilly days. But instead of covering up the inevitable dark circles, puffy spots, and redness, let Master Esthetician Barb Phillips inspire you at Rainier’s Face It Salon.

Statistics show that “the U.S. beauty industry generated a total revenue of 56.2 billion dollars in 2015.” With so many available products for treating the skin, as well as a thriving cosmetics industry, the whole process can feel overwhelming. Even the welcoming sight of a salon becomes intimidating when they showcase ‘sugaring’ and ‘microneedling.’

This is where it helps to turn to a licensed Master Esthetician. In Washington, such certification is granted only after more than 1,200 hours of training, including study of biology and chemistry, and a state-mandated licensing process. Barb Phillips graduated, earned her license, and opened Face It Salon in the spring of 2015.

Face It Salon is located “in the quaint, budding little town of Rainier,” explains Phillips. “It’s a beautiful 15 minute drive from Lacey, and well worth the drive and the price.” After spending many years in the Seattle area working as—amongst other things—a master sommelier and for such companies as Nordstrom and Clarisonic, the Olympia native decided it was time to move home.

Face It Salon offers free skin analysis with every service because Phillips finds “skin care education is the key.” Having studied the intricate science of cosmetic chemistry, “I understand how skin works and what skin needs.”

face it salonAn Olympia native, Barbara Phillips specializes in skin analysis, education, care, and optimum outcomes.

Unlike many others in her field, however, at Face It Salon services are about healing, not covering up. Phillips strives to take care of problems, not mask them. She explains, “We have so many more tools, more capabilities, than ever before. It CAN be fixed now. I truly want women to fall in love with good skin care.”

The shop specializes in microdermabrasion, chemical peels, microneedling, dermaplaning, European Facials, and designing beautiful, healthy brows through sugaring, waxing, and sculpting. There is currently an introductory special going on which includes microdermabrasion and a chemical peel for only $100. Phillips laughs that even her beauty school’s student-run salon charged more for the pair.

Clients with sensitive skin shouldn’t feel left out. Face It Salon is more than able to deal with rosacea, acne, dehydrated skin, and any other sensitivity issues.

While the combo special only takes about 90 minutes to complete, Phillips reminds customers that “it’s a process. One visit will show great results but you’ll get ten times better results from a series of visits.” She suggests a series of six treatments, once every 6-8 weeks, for “optimum outcomes.”

face it salonLocated in beautiful Rainier, Face It Salon is an easy 15 minute drive from Lacey.

Though still a small shop, it’s best to make an appointment for services. Hours are traditionally from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday, but “if you want beautiful skin for that special occasion” call or drop by to chat with Barb about your needs.

Face It Salon is located at 109 Binghampton Street, Suite D in Rainier. She is also accepting clients through Irish Alana Salon in Tumwater. You can reach Barb by calling 360-481-5501 or through the shop’s Facebook page. Shop gift certificates make great stocking stuffers and nothing says “bring on the holidays!” like glowing, radiant face.

“A smile is the best makeup any girl can wear” decided Marilyn Monroe. For the rest of us, there are skilled teachers and highly trained estheticians like Barb Phillips at Face It Salon.

Oly Town Artesians Kick off New Season in Everett

Thurston Talk - Fri, 11/27/2015 - 4:49pm


Submitted by The Oly Town Artesians

The Oly Town Artesians celebrate the holiday weekend by kicking off their 2015-2016 season with a road game on Saturday night against Sporting Everett FC. After a playoff appearance in their inaugural season in the Western Indoor Soccer League, the Artesians feature a new head coach, Matt Stalnik, and return their two top scorers and a solid backline for their second season.

Willie Spurr and Greg Wolfe combined to score 19 goals last season and are back in the starting lineup. Spurr just wrapped up his senior season at The Evergreen State College and was named first team allconference for the fourth straight season, the only Geoduck in program history to earn first team honors all four years. Wolfe, a graduate of Evergreen, was named the Artesians’ All-Around Player of the Year last season and is the only player to have appeared in every game for Oly Town.

Tom Kemennu, the Artesians Defensive Player of the Year, and Brady Espinoza return to the backline and will be joined by local indoor veteran Brett Stallworth. A graduate of Elmhurt College, Stallworth spent the last few seasons with the South Sound Shock of the Premier Arena Soccer League. Stallworth is joined by another former Shock player in his first season with Oly Town. Shelton native Jake Sanford brings experience and intelligence to the midfield.

Other returners include midfielder Kyle Wiese, post Justin La Torre, a four goal scorer last season, and Brendan Rosgen, an assistant coach who missed last season while recovering from an injury. Rosgen scored two goals in the preseason tournament on Halloween in Bellingham.

Goalkeeping duties will be handled by a pair of newcomers, 19 year old Olympia High School graduate Evan Munn and Lacey’s Melvin Blacketer.
Sporting Everett enters the game at 1-0-0 after upsetting the Tacoma Stars Reserves 6-5 in week one. Lupe Rodriguez was named WISL Player of the Week for his hat trick for Everett last Saturday night.

Follow Saturday night’s game and the entire season by visiting, follow us on Twitter (@OlyTownFC), or like us on Facebook. The Artesians kick off their home slate on December 19th against the Tacoma Stars Reserves.

Syndicate content