Recent local blog posts

Saturday Night Disinfo

OlyBlog Home Page - Sun, 10/26/2014 - 8:37am
Event:  Sat, 11/01/2014 - 6:00pm - 8:00pm

Last Word Books and Press & Rogue Sociology present: 


Last Word Books and Press is paranoid to present Saturday Night Disinfo, a conspiracy theory / tinfoil hat discussion and lecture group, MC'ed by local sociologist October Surprise. 

Saturdays, starting November First, 11/1 from 6 - 8 PM.

Last Word Books @ 111 Cherry NE

Questions & comments: october |@| logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

Orca Books free event: Author Chris Dixon presents "Another Politics"

OlyBlog Home Page - Sat, 10/25/2014 - 8:46pm
Event:  Tue, 11/04/2014 - 7:00pm

A FREE talk at Orca Books, 509 4th Ave E in downtown Olympia. Chris Dixon will be talking about his new book, "Another Politics: Talking Across Today's Transformative Movements".

Amidst war, economic meltdown, and ecological crisis, a “new spirit of radicalism is blooming” from New York to Cairo, according to Chris Dixon. In Another Politics, he examines the trajectory of efforts that contributed to the radicalism of Occupy Wall Street and other recent movement upsurges. Drawing on voices of leading organizers across the United States and Canada, he delivers an engaging presentation of the histories and principles that shape many contemporary struggles.

Dixon outlines the work of activists aligned with anti-authoritarian, anti-capitalist, and anti-oppression politics and discusses the lessons they are learning in their efforts to create social transformation. The book explores solutions to the key challenge for today’s activists, organizers, fighters, and dreamers: building a substantive link between the work of “against,” which fights ruling institutions, and the work of “beyond,” which develops liberatory alternatives. logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

An Orca Books reading: Olympia poet Gail Tremblay

OlyBlog Home Page - Sat, 10/25/2014 - 8:41pm
Event:  Sat, 11/01/2014 - 3:00pm

Olympia poet Gail Tremblay will read from her new collection of poems, "Farther From and Too Close to Home". A long time resident of Olympia, Gail has been an artist, poet and teacher for over forty years. She shares her unique vision through her multi-media visual works, art installations, her writing on Native American art, and her poetry. She has been a member of the faculty at The Evergreen State College since 1980.

This is a FREE event at Orca Books, 509 4th Ave E in downtown Olympia. logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

BusChick likes us! :-0

Rebelling by bus BusChick is a Seattle-based public transit advocate.  Here is a post of hers from September 2014.  To read more of her posts, her blog is included in the Rebels by Bus links. Thanks, BusChick! Posted by BusChick at 12:06 pm

As I think I might have mentioned, we need a revolution in how we get around in this country, and we need it yesterday. Instead of doing something about it, our elected officials, including those who claim to understand the urgency, are doubling down on car infrastructure, ensuring that our children and grandchildren will continue to face limited, dangerous, unhealthy, and toxic transportation choices far into the future.

While we hold our collective breath waiting for the people in power to do the right thing (and also, because the air is polluted!), we ordinary, everyday folks have the ability and obligation to—ahem!—drive change. Allow me to introduce you to some folks in Thurston County who are doing just that.

Actually, come to think of it, you have probably already heard about Mary Williams and Gail Johnson, aka Rebels by Bus, two retired South Sound residents who been challenging car culture for years. I’m embarrassed to admit I just learned about them last spring. Of, course, it is also possible that I did hear about them back in 2010; parenting has destroyed my memory.

But I digress.

Here’s what my new favorite bus riders have to say about why they ride.

Global warming, world-wide financial downfall, volatile stock market, all-time high gas prices, increasing unemployment… enough to make anyone cringe and want to hibernate until things get better.

Read on… you don’t need to hibernate. Maybe you should just SLOW down?


Traveling on the bus is also a bit of a rebellion-as if by getting out of our cars, we are declaring our independence from oil and the culture that says we must rush, rush, rush around. The bus rides themselves are also a wonderful way to get a different perspective about life and the benefits of going more slowly. It is also a gentle reminder that people are helpful and friendly no matter where you go.

For some, traveling by bus is the way they get back and forth to work; they can get a lot of reading or knitting done. For others like us, traveling by bus is recreation and adventure. Like any adventure, there is the joy of figuring things out and making all the right connections. There is also a sense of resiliency when things do not go quite as planned and you have to come up with Plan B. It is a great opportunity to practice letting go of those things you cannot control.

Even in these tumultuous times, there are grand and wonderful adventures that await. Our posts are not meant to be a tour guide of the greater Puget Sound area but we do hope to provide ideas and stories that inspire you to get on that bus. Once you realize how easily you can travel to so many places without spending a lot of money, it will open up a whole new realm of fun!

I realize not everyone has the privilege to slow the pace of life, but I so appreciate these rebels, who are using their bus adventures to question the culture we have created and to develop a deeper connection to their community.

Yes, please.

This entry was posted in people, reasons to ride, transit culture and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.
Categories: Local Environment

Oly Freakdown Fest

Northern - Olympia All Ages Project - Sat, 10/25/2014 - 12:00pm

Friday and Saturday, October 24th & 25th

Evergreen Noise, FLY, Bones Cvlt, OPP and OCS presents..

Olympia’s own loud rock costume party!

Lo’ There Do I See My Brother
Redeem The Exile
Harvest States
MC Swamptiger
Sorrow’s Edge
A Friend

Buy tickets at:
PRESALE ONLY: $12 Two Day Pass
DAY OF EVENT: $8 Per Day

October 24th and 25th, 2014
Shows start each day at 3PM!

Facebook Invite


Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Science Café - Dam removal and restoration of the Elwha River -- An Update

OlyBlog Home Page - Sat, 10/25/2014 - 10:29am
Event:  Tue, 11/11/2014 - 7:00pm - 8:30pm

From today's inbox:

Dam removal and restoration of the Elwha River -- An Update
Jeffrey Duda, Research Ecologist, U.S. Geological Survey
7:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Orca Books - 509 East 4th Avenue, Olympia

With their simultaneous decommissioning, removal of the Elwha and Glines Canyon dams represents one of the largest projects of its kind. During the 3 years of dam removal, scientists actively monitored various aspects of the physical and biological changes to the river and coastal ecosystems downstream. A major facet of the dam removal project was the controlled release of a portion of the 21 million m3 of sediment that had accumulated in the reservoirs. The release of this material and the resulting changes downstream are the focus of this talk.

Anadromous fish that had persisted in degraded spawning and rearing habitat downstream of the lower Elwha dam have started to recolonize the watershed, including in two tributaries between the former dams sites that are serving as clear water refugia in the otherwise turbid waters. With the removal of the Glines Canyon Dam in September of 2014 salmon have access to over 150 river km of spawning and rearing habitat, the majority of which is protected as wilderness inside of Olympic National Park.

This presentation will provide an update of dam removal progress, detail measurements of suspended sediment concentrations, and discuss various monitoring and evaluation studies. logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

read more

What is a Family Readiness Group (aka FRG), and Why Should I Care?

Thurston Talk - Sat, 10/25/2014 - 7:15am



By Cara Bertozzi

hometown logoIf you have spent any time hanging around the Army, you know that Soldiers are infamous for their rampant use of inordinately long acronyms that stand for phrases nobody can seem to remember. For the uninitiated, it is easy to feel as though you have entered a foreign country when trying to interpret conversations involving an LES (leave and earnings statement), CYSS (child, youth and school services), MWR (morale, welfare and recreation), or LCSC (Lewis Community Spouses Club). In fact, family members can sign up for classes at Joint Base Lewis McChord (JBLM) to help them navigate military language, with a full session being devoted to acronyms and military terms.

jblm spouses

FRG volunteers attend a catered leadership development forum.

One acronym that definitively concerns non-military personnel is FRGs, the family resource Family Readiness Groups. An FRG is a Command-sponsored program that is primarily run by spouse volunteers with the help of a DOD employee, a Family Readiness Support Assistant (FRSA). FRSAs are vetted liaisons who provide continuity as volunteers switch in and out, and they interface with both the soldiers and their families. The volunteers are typically spouses who have a heart for helping fellow spouses thrive despite the demands of military life.

Good Commanders understand that a healthy FRG community is a unique and effective tool for maintaining the readiness of the unit’s soldiers. Its purpose is to establish a line of communication between the Command Team and the families of the soldiers in a unit, educate the families regarding available resources, and build the resiliency needed to successfully cope with the challenges of military life, especially during engagements such as deployments. Having a strong, prepared family allows the solider to maintain focus during missions.

Most FRGs seek to meet their objectives through a variety of strategies. Volunteers present newcomer briefs, town halls, topical information sessions, and pre-deployment and post-deployment briefs in conjunction with Command to disseminate important, sensitive information about the soldiers’ missions and life in the military. They host social events to build community and strengthen family networks. They conduct training seminars to educate and empower their volunteers. They purchase unit-specific merchandise and hold fundraisers to support their activities. And they spend hours and hours working on rosters to ensure that everyone has access to these valuable resources.

jblm spouses

FRG volunteers participate in a Lewis Community Spouses Club event, Mock Dining In.

Modern Army families often look quite different from those of the past. Gone are the days when soldiers were all male and spouses were all female, when every wife stayed at home and did not pursue her own career, and when everyone lived on or close to the base, prioritizing military life above all else. Military spouses today comprise a diverse group, many with careers and businesses of their own who have spread out in communities near and far from the base to pursue professional and educational opportunities for themselves and their children.

In the swirl of juggling careers, children, pets, homes, and hobbies in the face of regular transitions, it can be easy to remain disengaged from Army life, but to do so is to miss out on a valuable opportunity to enrich your own military experience and that of others.

When I first met volunteer Veronica Werhane, she told me that she loved the military spouse life. I had just completed my fifth move in three years, and I was not particularly pleased to be sending my husband off to train while I purchased our first home alone, working full-time. But Veronica’s enthusiasm was contagious, and I hoped that by befriending her, I too might be able to make such a claim one day. Veronica’s healthy appetite for adventure has given her common ground with many spouses, and in wanting to give her son opportunities for exploration, she runs a playgroup that provides a venue for young moms to gather and share their experiences and plans lots of fun activities around town to help people get to know the area.

jblm spouses

FRG volunteers with deployed spouses attend a military ball together.

Lauren Howard is another volunteer who started coming to Veronica’s events with her young kids and eventually took on the role of secretary in the FRG. It wasn’t long before the role of FRG leader opened up, and Lauren stepped in and took the bull by the horns. She has family in the area and could easily have stayed busy without the added responsibility. However, she is passionate about making sure spouses have opportunities for engagement and education following an experience at a previous duty station, where she felt isolated with no community and a small baby at home.

Another spouse who is onboard with Lauren’s passion for educating spouses is volunteer Cinda Doggett. Cinda’s experience as a trainer in the corporate world is a perfect match for Lauren’s agenda. Together, they are hoping to inspire more spouse involvement by touting the many benefits of FRG involvement and creating professional value-added seminars that directly prepare spouses for various aspects of military life and also give them experiences that help them hone career skills.

I have seen the spouses of the FRG pull together when one of their own is hospitalized, needs a ride, requests last-minute childcare, is looking for a pet sitter, or moves homes while their solider is away or when a new baby has joined the ranks. It is incredible to be a part of a group that not only celebrates together but also looks out for each other during life’s bumpy patches, especially when duty calls your significant other away at inconvenient times.


Divers New Album Excitement!

K Records - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 6:18pm
There is a new rock’n'roll sound from Philadelphia that is raking America over the coals. Divers are stompin’ at the Go-Go and everyone is rump shakin’ in time to their primitive beat. Divers are fronted by Ms. Emily Ana Zeitlyn, who participated in the Black Mountain Music Project, toured with the Microphones, Mirah, Calvin Johnson […]
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Oly Freakdown Fest

Northern - Olympia All Ages Project - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 12:00pm

Friday and Saturday, October 24th & 25th

Evergreen Noise, FLY, Bones Cvlt, OPP and OCS presents..

Olympia’s own loud rock costume party!
*Costume Contest on this day*

Like Vultures
For The Likes Of You
Countless The Dead
The Lion In Winter
From The Future
Ocean Breathes Salty
Twisted Heroes

Buy tickets at:
PRESALE ONLY: $12 Two Day Pass
DAY OF EVENT: $8 Per Day

October 24th and 25th, 2014
Shows start each day at 3PM!

Facebook Invite


Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Theo’s Chocolate factory

This week’s Rebels trip had an unusual occurrence:  it rained!  I recall it’s rained only on three Rebels trips in the past 2 1/2 years; we have good weather karma.

All news reports promised total gridlock on the notorious I-5.  We were lucky… not only did we leave the driving to the professionals, the traffic was not too bad.  Each of our “legs” getting to the Fremont district of Seattle were on time!

pcc marketVisiting the “center of the universe” (as Fremont likes to be known), is always a treat.  Fun small shops, quirky public art, and lots of choices for restaurants.  We were ready for a hot lunch by the time we arrived in Fremont at noon.  Most of us headed to the wonderful PCC market – which has an overwhelmingly HUGE deli.  Anything you could imagine is there!  It took awhile to browse the selections.  There is a large outdoor covered area (with heaters) where we gathered to eat. (Darrell reported that the Red Door Café, down the street on 34th was very good).

After lunch, several of us walked a few blocks to visit the infamous troll that lives under the Aurora bridge.  On the way, we spotted the three Billy Goat Gruffs, and I recited a paraphrased version of that fairy tale (as it relates to the troll and the bridge!)   Next on the public art stroll was the seven ton statute of Vladimir Lenin.  Yes, only in Fremont!  We caught a glimpse of The Rocket, a 1953 Cold War remnant.  Poised to the side of The Rocket is the planet Saturn.

theos doorNext up:  what we’ve all been waiting for:  Theo’s Chocolate Factory Tour.  Theo’s was the first fair trade-organic chocolate maker in the world.  The one-hour tour is very informative and includes LOTS of sampling.  From the observation room, all steps in the process (from bean to bar) can be viewed.

The confection room is special.  This is where all of Theo’s NON-bar products are produced.  We sampled the seasonal special:  apple cider caramel.  The pear-balsamic was excellent also.  At the end of the tour, each one of us received a bonus:  a special commemorative full size bar!  We had time to shop in the retail store before heading back to catch our bus.

rainbowBus connections on the way home were excellent.  Traffic was slow in spots, but not at a standstill.  This double rainbow at the Highway 512 Park and Ride greeted us as we waited for our last bus to take us home to Olympia.



Categories: Local Environment

Olympia Weekend Event Calendar

Thurston Talk - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 7:36am



Halloween is still a full week away but that isn’t stopping a host of Olympia area Halloween related festivities from filling our calendar this weekend.  Luckily, most of them are inside as blustery fall weather is looking like it will continue.  For the brave souls (and those of us who still don’t have pumpkins to carve with our kids) local pumpkin patches are open all weekend long.  And for the even braver, haunted houses abound.  For those seeking something non-candy corn related, a variety of options are throughout our calendar from live theater and craft brewing celebrations to razor clam digs and 5K runs.

Submit an event for our calendar here.

ThurstonTalk aims to be your source for positive information and events happening in Olympia.  If you have a suggestion for a post, send us a note at  For more events and to learn what’s happening in Olympia and the surrounding area, click here.



Where To Trick-or-Treat and Celebrate Halloween around Olympia

Thurston Talk - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 6:51am



By Alyssa Ramsfield

duncan sponsorAttention Thurston County ghost and ghouls – it’s time for the annual Halloween tradition of trick-or-treating. If going door-to-door through your neighborhood isn’t an option or the rain is pouring and you don’t want dampen your costume, here are some Halloween events that promise to be a treat for the whole family.

olympia trick or treat

Costumed children of all ages will be trick-or-treating across Thurston County on October 31.

Boo Bash

Start by kicking off Halloween early at Hands on Children’s Museum’s Boo Bash on October 25. The costume event has a science theme this year and will include laboratories across the HOCM campus. Arts, crafts, and experiments will be available for children of all ages.

Halloween in the Halls

Saint Martin’s University residents celebrate Halloween with local youth on October 25.  Starting at 11:00 a.m., enjoy complementary games, crafts and lunch.  Trick-or-treating and a tour of the residence halls is slated for 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.  Residence hall director, Heather Nicole Saladino says “it’s warm, it’s dry and it’s fun.”  Be one of the first 200 kids and you will earn a free, reusable Halloween bag.

Guardians of the Downtown Halloween 2014

Businesses across downtown Olympia are participating in this year’s Halloween fun. From 3:00 – 6:00 pm, treats will be available at nearly 50 storefronts for costumed kids. Your ghosts and goblins can also participate in a treasure hunt.  At each business, a superhero rubber ducky (aka “The Guardian”) will be hidden amongst the store’s stock. Once the ducky has been located, an entry will be given to win a grand prize drawing for a treasure chest full of items from local merchants. This spooktacular occasion is the perfect way to support local businesses and enjoy the holiday. For a list of participating businesses, click here.

Charlie’s Safari Harvest Festival

Charlie’s Safari, in Lacey, will be hosting their annual Harvest Festival on October 31 from 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. The safari will morph into a glow in the dark maze with crafts and games for kids of all ages. The festival will also be collecting donations for Citygates Ministries and Concern for Animals throughout the day. A donation of either three canned food items, three school supply items, or one small bag of cat/dog food admission, will earn you a free entry with a paid entry. 

Capital’s Spooktacular Bash

olympia trick or treat

Capital Mall hosts crafts, activities and a costume contest at their annual Halloween event.

The Capital Mall is well known for shopping, but on October 31, it is the place to be for candy and Halloween entertainment. Beginning at 5:00 p.m., children under 10 years of age are invited to collect candy, create crafts, and even participate in a costume contest. The contest will be divided by age group and the winners will receive a marvelous prize. This event is geared for young children, so no adults or teens with full face make-up or masks will be admitted.

Trunk or Treat

Local churches, including Capital Christian Center in Lacey, are participating in community-based Halloween celebrations, typically called Trunk or Treat. Instead of going door-to-door, kids can go trunk-to-trunk, visiting decorated, themed cars in the parking lot.  Candy will be passed out from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Sweet tooths will be satisfied at this safe, amusing, and free experience.

A Countdown to Candy

Mills & Mills Funeral Home will be hosting activities, treats, and games for community members across Thurston County. For the donation of one non-perishable food item, the entire family, including pets, are welcome to join in on the Halloween festivities.

Fall Harvest Festival

The Boys & Girls Club of Tumwater opens their doors from 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. to Thurston County on Halloween for their Fall Harvest Festival. Carnival games, face painting, and a bounce house are just a few highlights of the event. A non-perishable food donation is recommended for participation.

For even more Halloween activities, visit ThurstonTalk’s event calendar. No matter which event you choose to attend, Thurston County is the place to be on Halloween for safe, treat-filled fun.


Mason Transit Offers First Glimpse of Cutting-Edge Transit Community Center

Thurston Talk - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 6:47am



By Gale Hemmann

mason transit

Kathy Geist, manager of the new Transit- Community Center, enthusiastically guides a tour of the new building, which already has many confirmed tenants.

Something exciting is happening in Shelton. In early 2015, this small Mason County city will welcome its first-ever transit community center. The Mason Transit Authority Transit-Community Center will house not only full transit facilities, but social services, classrooms, event space, retail, and so much more.

Built by Forma Construction, the Mason Transit Authority is repurposing the 1950’s-era Washington National Guard Shelton Armory for the new center. This massive project began in 2006, when MTA purchased the armory building as surplus. They were able to get generous federal and state grants to build the center, as well as individual contributions (in fact, “paver” stones will bear the names of local donors).

Finally, after years of hard work, the vision is getting close to reality. I was lucky to participate in a tour of the construction site recently. On a chilly but clear October day, I joined a small group and donned hard hats as we began our tour through the facility. Situated on West Franklin Street in downtown Shelton, across from Safeway, the shell of the building is now largely complete. Attractive and modern, it’s easy to imagine the center bustling with activity and life.

Our tour was led by Kathy Geist, Transit-Community Center manager. Geist is incredibly enthusiastic about the new building. For the past several years, she’s been working tirelessly with groups and individuals around the community to incorporate as many uses into the public space as possible. As we toured the center, Geist took us through future classrooms, office spaces, and best of all, a large, glass atrium connecting the transit and community sections of the building.

From the outset, Geist shared, plans for the center have included community input and centered around the goal of serving Mason County residents. The new center is going to offer a truly impressive range of public services. Meeting and multi-purpose rooms will be available to the community, from non-profit events to weddings, at an affordable rate. Many different groups and organizations are excited about the center, and much of the rental space has already been leased. Tenants are confirmed for three of the four retail spaces (word has it that locals are excited to hear that Doos Donuts will be setting up shop there).

As construction on the center nears completion and word spreads, Geist says the community is getting eager to see it open. She has also been planning with the Shelton Parks and Recreation Department, who plan to hold athletic activities in the gym, and Olympic College Shelton, who will be leasing classroom space. The college’s Culinary Program will also be using the commercial-sized kitchen, which is also available for public and private event use. And programs are planned especially for seniors and youth. Once-cherished community events such as wheelchair basketball for disabled veterans will have a chance to be resurrected at the new facility.

mason transit center

Drew Phillips of Forma Construction has been overseeing construction of the project, to make sure the new building meets LEED environmental standards.

The space will also house a small area for the Shelton Police Department officers, near the atrium. This will both provide a resource for the community and enhance public safety with the officers’ presence.

Rather than a large, traditional parking lot, Geist said they are developing plans to meet parking needs with an eco-friendly “nature education” parking lot that will provide a pleasant alternative.

Another very unique feature of the Transit Center is that it is slated to house a childcare service. By providing affordable, licensed daycare near public transit, MTA hopes they can fill an important need for busy working parents.

Also onsite to greet us for the tour were Brad Patterson, Mason Transit Authority General Manager, and Drew Phillips, LEED AP  the project lead at Forma. They were both excited to see the project nearing completion. Phillips oversees LEED compliance on the project (the new part of the structure will be LEED-Certified – an environmentally-friendly designation – and the historic Armory, while difficult to make LEED-certified, is as eco-friendly as possible). He said it has been rewarding to work on this “integrated construction project.”

“We’ve been cost-effective and are pleased the new building will serve the needs of the community in so many ways,” Phillips said. He also noted that all the players involved have worked together incredibly well in the process of planning and building the center. “There’s been so much synergy behind this project,” he notes.

One wonderful aspect of the new Transit-Community Center is that it will be financially self-sustaining. Built without cost to local taxpayers, the center will bring in rental revenue from the groups and businesses who lease space, covering the operating and maintenance costs.

In the process of renovating the Armory and adding the new construction, Forma is making the center ADA-compliant and accessible to all. This is just one more way they are ensuring that the new center serves all residents of the community.

mason transit center

Kathy Geist talks with (from left to right) Washington State Representative Kathy Haigh, Forma’s Drew Phillips, and Shelton City Commissioner Tracy Moore on a recent tour of the new center.

The history of the Armory will be preserved in its new incarnation. The original, beautiful douglas fir floor of the gymnasium is being kept intact. And historical photos and information about the old Armory will be showcased. Geist sees the project as building on the community’s history, renovating the Armory into a usable, up-to-date building.

Forma has been managing construction and renovation projects in the Pacific Northwest for nearly 30 years. They are responsible for many historical renovations in the area, as well as new public and private construction projects. You might recognize their innovative work at the Hands On Children’s Museum, Joint Base Lewis McChord, and local schools and medical facilities.

When it opens, the MTA Transit-Community Center will be much more than a new building. It will be a safe, attractive downtown “hub” for commerce and visitors as well as locals. It will help revitalize Shelton’s historic downtown. The construction and operation of the center have created and will continue to create jobs. And perhaps most importantly of all, it will help enhance the quality of life for many Shelton-area residents.

You can learn more about the Forma’s Mason Transit Authority Transit-Community Center project and their other work in the community on their website. You can also “like” their page on Facebook.


Step Inside the T-Bird Nation at Tumwater High School

Thurston Talk - Fri, 10/24/2014 - 5:59am


By Taylor Tryon, Tumwater High School Intern to ThurstonTalk

tumwater auto spaAfter a dreary fall week, nothing brings Tumwater alive like Friday Night Football. The halls of Tumwater High School are always abuzz with talk of the night ahead. Signs splashed across every wall, cheerleaders in uniform, players in their jerseys, and the mascot roaming the halls all add to the electric atmosphere.

It all starts with mass texts and tweets announcing the theme of that night’s game. White Out, Black Out, Green Out, Pink Out for Breast Cancer Awareness, Super Fan – the list goes on.

Next up is the pregame. Fans show up decked out in spirit wear long before the game starts, whether for the tailgate in the student parking lot or just to get a primeTumwater Green Out Nest #1 spot in the nest, they are there and ready to support.

Soon the stadium is packed and the team is prepared. Beside the lively student section is the band, ready to aid in keeping the energy up for all four quarters.  Below sit the ever-supportive season ticket holders, made up of parents and alumni. Evergreen trees line the horizon and the bright lights shine, making a perfect setting for a night of excitement.

The real magic starts at kick off. Once the clock on the scoreboard starts, Tumwater becomes a force to be reckoned with. This is when T-Bird Nation comes alive. Just walking past the THS student section can be a bit intimidating, with the loud chatter, intense involvement, and staggering turn out.

However, the feeling of being on the inside is indescribable. “There’s really nothing like it,” said Tumwater High sophomore, Kaitlyn Barber. The Nest gives an immediate sense of community, of everyone coming together to support Tumwater “Winning” Football.

The key to fun in The Nest is participating in the cheers. Some are led by the THS Cheer Squad and others T-Bird initiated and include the classic ROTA and GATA chants, Keep Truckin’, I Believe that We Will Win, and of course, the Tumwater High School Fight Song when the team scores.

Fight the team across the field for THS is here. We’re gonna send the Earth reverberating with a mighty cheer: Rah! Rah! Rah! Hit them hard and see how they fall, never let that team get the ball, Hail Hail the gang’s all here so let’s beat those (opponents) now!”

Tumwater Green Out Nest #3The noise of the Nest may not be anywhere near that of the 12th man, but it is definitely enough to wake the neighbors. Periodically during the game, a message will spread through the section to ‘go crazy’ at a set time. Everyone waits patiently, watching the clock as the seconds tick down. The main goals are to be heard by the team, to send a message of encouragement, and to remind them of our presence. At Tumwater, there is a special relationship between the team and the fans – an understanding that no matter what, the support will be there, and T-Bird Nation faithfully displays that steady devotion.

With the recent social media boom concerning the popularization of loud and proud student sections, The Nest has adopted quite a few ideas from other schools. Most notably, last season’s black out game left The Nest covered in flour. On any average game day however, cans of silly string or rolls of streamers are far from rare. Videos of The Nest can be found all over Twitter and Vine and showcase the enthusiasm of Tumwater football fans. Many students from other schools have commented on the spirit Tumwater has, flocking to Twitter to voice their envy and support for the Thunderbirds.

It’s no secret that Tumwater High School’s Football program is something special. The coach, the team, and the titles all add up to the Thunderbirds as an unrelenting force in Thurston County.  It’s important, in all of the Friday night lights, not to lose focus of the real goal of T-Bird Nation: to give the players on the field a place to look up and feel the support, win or lose.


YWCA of Olympia Announces 2014 Business of Achievement

Thurston Talk - Thu, 10/23/2014 - 5:36pm


Submitted by YMCA of Olympia 

Three Girls Media CEO, Erika Taylor Montgomery.

Three Girls Media CEO, Erika Taylor Montgomery.

According to the Shriver Report, two out of three households depend on the wages of working moms. However, childcare is expensive and can be hard to find for some women. Many workers have limited or no sick or maternity leave.  Some women use restroom stalls to breastfeed their infants.  The facts are sobering, but some businesses are stepping in and stepping up to remove these barriers and create family-friendly workplaces that support and empower women and families.

Three Girls Media works hard to create an environment that supports working parents, which is why it was selected as the 2014 YWCA of Olympia Business of Achievement.  Three Girls Media is an award-winning boutique Public Relations & Social Media Management Agency located in Olympia, WA. The firm works with clients worldwide to help them raise their brand awareness and name recognition through both traditional and digital public relations tactics.

 “This business is very empowering for women! Noteworthy benefits include extremely flexible schedules, family leave, telecommuting, and even Costco memberships.”

“The business doesn’t just talk about families being first…they live it! Whether that means office dogs barking occasionally or kids at staff meetings, each member of the team is encouraged to make whatever scheduling allowances are needed to ensure the health and welfare of their families and themselves.”

While providing excellent service and dedication to their customers, Three Girls Media emphasizes a healthy work/life balance, allowing employees to make their own schedules. This enables employees to avoid prohibitive day care costs, obtain advanced education, and be involved in nonprofit and school-based volunteer opportunities.

“We are proud to honor Three Girls Media as our inaugural Business of Achievement.” says YWCA executive director Hillary Soens. “They exemplify the YWCA’s goal to support the economic and social advancement of women each and every day in their business practices.”

“I’m so humbled and honored by this award! When I started Three Girls Media nine years ago it was incredibly important to me to have a business model that honored putting families and my team’s personal lives first. To be recognized for something that is a core belief and practice of mine and my business is truly fantastic!” stated Erika Taylor Montgomery, Three Girls Media Founder & CEO.

A Business of Achievement biography is available on the YWCA of Olympia website.

The 20th Annual Women of Achievement Gala, presented by Titus Will, will take place on Thursday, November 6th from 5:30pm – 8:45pm at the Red Lion Hotel Forest Ballroom. The event is open to the public and tickets ($80) will be available by contacting the YWCA of Olympia at 352-0593 or online at under Events or Donate. Once again Titus-Will Cars will serve as the Women of Achievement Gala Presenting Sponsor, with WSECU and Lucky Eagle as the Gala Sustaining Sponsors.

For more information about the Women of Achievement Gala or for media inquiries, please contact Cherie Reeves Sperr, Special Events & Communications Director at 352-0593 or


Boys & Girls Clubs of Thurston County Board of Directors Receives Prestigious Award

Thurston Talk - Thu, 10/23/2014 - 5:28pm



Submitted by Boys & Girls Clubs of Thurston County

The Board of Directors of  Boys & Girls Clubs of Thurston County receives a prestigious  Silver Level of the National Boys & Girls Clubs of America League of EAGLES Award.

This new award is a key element of Boys and Girls Clubs of America’s Leading Edge 2020 Board Transformation Strategy which advances new tools, training, and technical assistance to local Boys & Girls Club Boards of Directors. The award recognizes organizations for achieving 90% or more of the Key Performance Indicators for Strong Boards as reported in the organization’s 2013 Annual Report.

This special Board awards program measures key elements of a strong board which include 90% of their board members achieving:

Engagement.   Engage and Attend board meetings

Ask.                    Ask others face-to-face for funding

Give.                  Give by making a personal financial gift

Lead.                 Lead the organization to achieving strategic initiatives

Evaluate.         Evaluate their individual board performance based on a personal plan

Serve.                Serving, actively on committees or task forces of the organization

Reaching this milestone is a significant achievement of which Boys & Girls Clubs of Thurston County is very proud.  It is a testimony of the dedication and commitment of the organization’s board and executive leadership to serving the youth of Thurston County at the highest level.

The League of EAGLES Awards was presented on Thursday, October 9, at 8:30 a.m. during the Pacific Leadership Conference General Session in Portland, OR.

Volunteer Meeting

Northern - Olympia All Ages Project - Thu, 10/23/2014 - 5:00pm

Come one, come all, come volunteer for your local all ages venue. NOTE: this is a Thursday, not our usual Monday!

Categories: Arts & Entertainment

NTPS College and Career Fair Scheduled for October 27

Thurston Talk - Thu, 10/23/2014 - 5:00pm



Submitted by North Thurston Public Schools 

north thurston public schoolsPlan to attend the 6th annual NTPS College and Career Fair held at Timberline High School on October 27.  This exciting event is open to the public and we encourage students and their parents to attend.  The fair offers a wide range of educational and career options.  This year we have over 100 colleges/universities represented including 4 year, 2 year, out-of -state colleges, technical and apprenticeship trades; numerous career opportunities; military including ROTC; scholarship information, and volunteer opportunities for teens. New this year – area organizations that offer scholarships will be on hand to tell you about their scholarships and what kind of applicant they are looking for.

  • 5:00 to 5:30 Workshop: Navigating the College Fair
  • 5:30  Doors Open to the College/Career Fair
  • 7:30 – 8:00 Workshop: Financing Your Education

Workshops this year.

How to Get the Most out of the College and Career Fair – Planning your Evening” Begin your evening at 5:00 in the theater.  Be ready with a game plan when the doors open at 5:30.

Financing Your Education: 7:30 – 8:00 Attend this workshop at the end of the College Fair.  Discover the different kinds of financial aid available to students including scholarships, financial need and federal aid, merit aid and deadlines and processes.

Transition panel presentation for students with IEP’s and their parents.  This panel is comprised of professionals from DD services, DVR, Parent to Parent, Thurston County Transition Services and Basic Education. This is a great opportunity to learn about transition services available as students transition from high school.

Timberline Concession Stand will be open and overflow parking available at Lakes Elementary.

Telling South Sound Stories

Squaxin Natural Resources Blog - Thu, 10/23/2014 - 4:02pm

The final presentation of the day is from Katie Campbell and Ashely Ahearn with Earthfix.  They work to get media coverage for all the wonderful work scientists are doing all over the Puget Sound area.   Stressing to remember that when giving an interview that it’s not live, no one is trying to make you sound stupid and everything can be edited.  If you can aim your content toward 6th graders and relate your science to real people it’ll be easier to draw their interest.  Some times the story requires a picture or a video in order for the issue to hit home for the average person who is not in the scientific community.  Remember that scientists have their thumbs on the pulse of what is happening in our ecosystems and weather the information is good or bad it is our duty to share it with the rest of the world.


Categories: Local Environment

Science-based strategies and unique partnerships to restore endangered species to South Sound Prairies

Squaxin Natural Resources Blog - Thu, 10/23/2014 - 3:27pm

This talk is being given by Sarah Hamman of the Center for Natural Lands Management.
I’m jumping in a little late to blog this talk, but here we go.
Prescribed fire is a very important tool to remove scotch broom and non-native grasses from South Sound prairies. They have over fifty trained fire fighters (fire setters) who work on prescribed burns. Over the past decade, they have learned how to use fire to its greatest benfits. From 50 acres in 2005 to over 2500 acres burned in the past year. A hot headfire removes scotch broom. A low intensity low severity burn increases bare ground and stimulates germination. Once they complete a fire, they put seed on the ground. They have been adapting farming and agricultural practices to try to get as many native species on the ground as possible. Each species takes a different strategy.

They have been able to greatly increase the poundage of native seed production over the past decade. Field germination rates of native species are typically less than 25%, many less than 10%. Very low germination rates, which one of the reasons why these species are struggling in the first place.

The checker spot butterfly is very picky about where it germinates. It needs golden paintbrush, Indian paintbrush, and plantain. That went by fast. I need to check the exact name of those three species.

Women from the Sustainable Prisons Project helped grow plants and tend to butterflies in studies of butterfly preference.

Understanding the most efficient effective strategies for each step of restoration will help restore prairies successfully in the Pacific Northwest.

Some important, unique partnerships have been key to forwarding prairie restoration here. Joint Base Lewis McCord, Department of Corrections, Universities… The list was so long, that I could not write it out.

Categories: Local Environment
Syndicate content