Recent local blog posts

Pine Hill Haints “Rattle Them Bones (excerpt)”

K Records - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 2:57pm
An excerpt of the Pine Hill Haints playing “Rattle Them Bones”, August 7, 2014, during a taping of the Pink Elephant’s Graveyard gravecast at Dub Narcotic Studio, Olympia, Washington. you can hear the entire gravecast HERE. “Rattle Them Bones” appears on the Pine Hill Haints album The Magik Sounds of The Pine Hill Haints [KLP254], […]
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Pink Elephant’s Gravecast 010

K Records - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 2:48pm
The Pink Elephant’s Gravecast is also available from Stitcher and iTunes. The Pine Hill Haints toured through Olympia in early August playing Northern with tour-mates Zealous Doxy. The next day they all stopped by Dub Narcotic Studio to chat with hosts Ian Vanek and Calvin Johnson (The Hive Dwellers) on the Pink Elephant’s Graveyard (where […]
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Zealous Doxy “Katie Cruel”

K Records - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 1:57pm
An excerpt of “Katie Cruel” by Zealous Doxy, who traveled from their home in England to tour the United States with Pine Hill Haints. The tour stopped in Olympia, Washington to play Northern and then visited Dub Narcotic Studio to tape an episode of the Pink Elephant’s Graveyard gravecast. You can hear the entire gravecast […]
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Theater Artists Olympia presents- An Improbable Peck of Plays 3D! Our Annual One-Act Play Festival!

OlyBlog Home Page - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 9:42am

We here at Theater Artists Olympia understand your need for fast-paced, eclectic, three dimensional theater. That’s why we’re rolling out our third annual one-act play festival, An Improbable Peck of Plays 3D! Armed with an arsenal of fantastic locally written plays from our friends at Northwest Playwrights Alliance, our group of directors stand ready to launch a series of tremendous, albeit short, one-acts in your general direction. Featuring the directing prowess of Mark Alford, pug Bujead, Christian Carvajal, Elizabeth Lord, Morgan Picton, and Vanessa Postil-combined with a stellar cast and crew-this year’s festival promises to be the best available in this dimension!

WHO: Theater Artists Olympia
WHAT: An Improbable Peck of Plays 3D
WHEN: August 21-September 7; all shows at 8pm except for one 2:30pm matinee on September 7
WHERE: The Midnight Sun performance space N. 113 Columbia ST. downtown Olympia
PRICE: $12 (no one turned away)
TICKETS: Available at the door the night of the performance and also in advance at Call 360.259.2743 for more info. logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

Panorama Residents’ New Careers as Volunteers

Thurston Talk - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 6:30am



By Eric Wilson-Edge

Some people never truly retire. These people occupy themselves with projects, hobbies or volunteer work. Panorama residents Jay Felzien and Ann Berry are part of this last category. The retirees spend a significant amount of their free time giving back. Their reasons are different but the results are the same.

panorama lacey

Jay Felzien, a resident at Panorama, has volunteered with hospices for seven years.

Jay Felzien Returns Help

Jay Felzien’s decision to volunteer is very personal. In 1983 Felzien’s partner was diagnosed with cancer and given six months to live. “I couldn’t take time off,” says Felzien. “There was an organization called Visiting Nurses and they’d go once a day to make sure he had something to eat and see that he was okay.”

Felzien’s partner died four months later. The experience taught him some valuable lessons that he still carries with him today. “I was really grateful for all the help I’d gotten,” says Felzien. “I remember how lost I was when my partner was dying and I didn’t like the idea of anyone having to go through that.”

Not too long ago Felzien got a call from one of his neighbors at Panorama. The woman knew about Felzien’s volunteer work at the hospice. She wondered if he could come over and talk with her husband.  “She told me that he was afraid of dying,” says Felzien.  Jay talked with the man, offered reassurance that everything would be okay. “The next day he was completely different.”

Comfort is a large part of what Felzien provides. Sometimes he reads books to clients, plays chess or goes on a walk. In the process he builds relationships with his clients and their families. “I meet a lot of very interesting people that I wouldn’t meet otherwise,” says Felzien. “Their defenses are down, they’re just a real person.”

Ann Berry’s Work at the Crisis Clinic

panorama lacey

Ann Berry’s last diplomatic posting was in South Africa. Now, she is an active volunteer at the Crisis Clinic.

Ann Berry listened to the recruiter’s talk. Afterwards she told her professor she was going to be a diplomat. “He looked at me and said ‘I didn’t pass and you won’t either.’” Needless to say Berry took the Foreign Service Exam, passed and spent most of her life as a diplomat.

Berry moved to Olympia in 1999. In preparation for her retirement Berry did some reading. She came across an article in the Olympian about a training program being offered by the Crisis Clinic of Thurston and Mason Counties. “I became addicted to the Crisis Clinic and have been there ever since.”

In 15 years Berry has done everything from answer phones to provide training to new volunteers. She and a small group of others helped keep the clinic afloat in the late 2000s following a split with Behavioral Health Resources. “There are a lot of organizations that make Olympia a jewel and we think the Crisis Clinic is one of those,” says Berry.

The work is challenging and rewarding. “It is intense,” says Berry. “We’ve had a number of calls with suicidal thoughts and that’s pretty tough stuff.” Berry’s training and her relationship with fellow volunteers make it possible for her to help others. “Your partner is there to talk with after a difficult call to hear what your feelings are.”

Berry says she continues to volunteer, partially because of what the work does for her. “I am amazed by what I have learned about myself. I never do a shift where I don’t come away saying ‘wow, that’s really amazing.’”

The spirit of volunteerism is big at Panorama. Some seniors help with programs within the retirement community while others, like Felzien and Berry, offer assistance elsewhere.  Either way the results are a better, more connected community.


JBLM Spouses Band Together to Form Business Networking Group

Thurston Talk - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 6:27am



By Cara Bertozzi

Olympia Auto Mall sponsorEvery Wednesday morning, a group of women can be found intently circled around foamy lattes and sweet treats, quietly engaging in demonstrably organized discussion at the DuPont Forza coffee shop. At first glance, it seems an eclectic group: some are young moms with kids seated nearby, some appear to have come straight from the gym, and others are well-heeled and perfectly coifed without an eyelash out of place.

jblm military spouse

Along with managing the stress of being a military spouse, these female entrepreneurs and small business owners gather at the DuPont Forza weekly to discuss their businesses.

These diverse women are bound by two common ties  - a military spouse sisterhood and small business ownership or novice entrepreneurs. Each week, they gather to work through a business-oriented strategy exercise, such as practicing a short elevator pitch, reviewing marketing strategies, setting short- and long-term goals, or testing minimum viable product ideas on each other.  This weekly meeting has appropriately been branded Power Hour, and the idea has already begun to spread to other bases, including Fort Bragg in North Carolina.

The group also ends each session with a simple recitation of Yes, Oops, and Help. In this way, the women intentionally share a positive moment from the last week, engage in reflection on missteps and learning points, and bring a challenge to the table for discussion. For these women, many of whom spend much of their time working alone or serving their customers without the benefit of a team with whom to brainstorm, this weekly meeting provides the structured training, discipline and collaboration that are key to the success of any business endeavor.

Alana Le is the mastermind behind this successful entrepreneurial support group. She started her own management consulting business after moving back to the Seattle-area following a multiple-year stint doing project management for international startups. Three weeks after marrying into the military last fall, her new husband deployed to Afghanistan. As a coping mechanism, she dove into volunteering and socializing with the other wives in the unit and was surprised at the preponderance of fellow military spouses who either owned or were contemplating starting their own business as a means to create a flexible, mobile career for themselves.

jblm military spouses

Pam Alvarado is building a sales team of distributors for Juice Plus. Photo credit: Pam Alvarado.

Military spouses have one of the highest unemployment rates in the country, despite the fact that many are highly skilled. The sometimes unpredictable, frequent moves are disruptive, and many bases are located at a prohibitive distance from urban centers. Further, it’s challenging to hold a traditional job while managing regular family transitions between single parenting.  Add in the stress of coping with having your spouse in a war zone and it’s clear to see why military spouses have a difficult time finding meaningful employment.

Alana identified the opportunity to use her business experience to not only encourage and equip other women to take calculated risks but also to establish her expertise and develop educational materials that she uses to empower other business owners to take charge of their content marketing in the digital age. She is results-oriented, and seeing her clients and friends successfully recruit customers is what drives her to run both the free Power Hour and her paid content marketing classes.

As impressive as Alana’s story is, she is quick to admit she keeps company with exceptional women. Pam Alvarado and Nicole Lee comprise the other original core Power Hour members. Pam started an online boutique for handmade dog collars after receiving an overwhelming response to a picture of her decked-out puppy that she shared on social media.

jblm military spouses

Nicole Lee recently launched her personal training business, Strong Moms Fitness. Photo credit: Nicole Lee.

Pam learned as she went, and when a franchise opportunity that more closely matched her strengths-based interests arose, she jumped on it. Pam is now building a Juice Plus sales team of distributors and loves the chance to mentor her team and promote healthy, whole-food lifestyles through her social media prowess.

Nicole is an ACE-certified personal trainer/gym owner who is just finishing her degree in Exercise Science and recently started a personal training business, Strong Moms Fitness, out of her garage. She loves helping people set and reach their fitness goals and finds satisfaction in helping military wives cope with stress through physical exertion.

Pam and Nicole both believe that diet and exercise are important foundations of healthy living and have teamed up to offer various free events to the military spouse community.

I left Power Hour with the desire to participate in Meghan Milliron’s Restoration Wellness class teaching couples Thai massage techniques, Richelle Futch’s Time Management class, and Mabani Hernandez’s Makeup Application class. Each of these women believe that with a committed approach, it is possible to pursue your professional dreams despite the challenges that military life presents. And who better to do that with than your girlfriends?

To learn more about Power Hour at JBLM, click here.


South Sound Solar Sheds Light on Solar’s Financial Incentives

Thurston Talk - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 6:00am



South Sound Solar-Interior ViewA decision to “go solar” lessens dependence on non-renewable energy sources while producing clean electricity gathered from the sun. Yet capturing this free, renewable source of energy requires set up costs. Solar will provide a financial return on investment and save you money on utility bills.  Right now is a wise time to invest in a solar energy system as tax credits and production incentives are offered. Several local lending institutions work directly with South Sound Solar to offer loans specifically for solar projects.

Federal Renewable Energy Tax Credit

This tax incentive allows up to 30% of the installation cost of a solar energy system to be credited to your federal income tax. This is a tax credit not a tax deduction. If you buy a $10,000 system you would shave $3,000 off of your taxes.

Washington State Cost Recovery Incentive Program 

Washington State, in partnership with local utilities such as Puget Sound Energy, offers an solar production incentive. For electricity produced by your solar panels, you can earn a minimum of $0.15/kWh for every kilowatt of electricity you produce. This steps up to $0.54/kWh if the solar products are manufactured in Washington for a maximum of $5,000 per year. You can apply for this credit every year until the current expiration date of 2020.

Net Metering

South Sound Solar-RoofYour home or business will use the electricity generated by your solar panels before it uses electricity generated by your power company. If you are producing more electricity through your solar system than you need, the electricity will go back to the utility and you will receive a credit at the retail rate.


Olympia Credit Union’s and Generation’s Credit Union loan programs require zero down, no home equity, and will finance 100% of the purchase and installation of the system. Olympia Federal Savings has a low interest home equity “green home” loan. As solar immediately raises the value of your home, OlyFed factors that future value into their equity calculations.

When South Sound Solar performs a Solar Site Survey your bid includes a custom calculated payback analysis. Keep in mind the sooner you buy solar the more incentives you earn before the incentives expire.

To learn more about solar incentives, credits and financing visit the South Sound Solar website by clicking here, calling 360-352-7869, or attending an upcoming informational workshop.


Easy Care for Your Synthetic Wig

Thurston Talk - Tue, 08/19/2014 - 6:00am



synthetic wig care

Learn how to properly care for your synthetic wig.

A synthetic wig, hairpiece or hair extension is an excellent investment in your appearance. Synthetic hair is easy to preserve when you follow a few easy care and cleaning steps.

First, when you remove your synthetic hair at night, turn it over and comb it. This simple step is an easy way to make sure your hair lasts a long time. Wigs, hair extensions and hairpieces pick up odors from the environment, just as clothes absorb odors, so airing and cleaning is essential.

How often you clean synthetic hair depends on a number of factors, such as how often the wig is worn, if the hair was exposed to smoke or cooking odors, how easy it is to style and if it feels smooth or coarse.

If it starts to feel coarse, or has a noticeable odor, it may be time to clean the hair.

Step One: Detangle the hair with a wide-tooth comb.

Step Two: Add the suggested amount of synthetic hair shampoo to a basin of cool water. Place your wig into the water and let it soak for about twenty minutes.

Step Three: Rinse the hair with cool water, swish it around, until all the soap bubbles are gone.

Step Four: Gently shake out excess water, and then carefully pat it dry with a soft towel.

Step Five:  Place the wig on a wire wig stand, so the air can circulate, and allow it to dry. Do not brush it while it is wet. Allow up to 24 hours for synthetic hair to dry. Avoid using a blow dryer as it will damage the hair.

You will discover that synthetic hair holds its style beautifully. Occasional cleaning simply preserves the look and feel of the hair.

For questions regarding the care of synthetic or human hair wigs, hairpieces and hair extensions, contact:

Merle Norman Cosmetics, Wigs and Day Spa

3925 – 8th Avenue SE, Suite F

Lacey, WA 98503



Lisa Sweet at Salon Refu

OlyBlog Home Page - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 11:37pm
Event:  Fri, 09/19/2014 - 6:00pm - 9:00pm

From today's inbox: logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

The Plant Place Nursery Has You Covered

Thurston Talk - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 5:48pm



Submitted by The Plant Place Nursery

Groundcovers are user-friendly and hardworking.  They make the perfect edging for sidewalks or walkways and some, like thyme, add fragrance as an added bonus.  Sweet Woodruff stays in well-mannered clumps.  Sedums are low maintenance and low growing.  Sea Thrift likes full sun and is low and grassy with clusters of hardy flowers.  Groundcovers earn their keep because they grow so well on both flat surfaces and slopes.  They are easy, carefree, and tolerate the shade from plants around them.  Many are also deer and rabbit resistant. They even provide erosion control that is eye-pleasing at the same time.  Maybe best of all, groundcovers will not break your budget.  They are inexpensive and perennial; a great investment for not a lot of money.  The Plant Place Nursery on 3333 South Bay Rd. NE in Olympia has you covered from the ground up!

the plant place ground cover 10 The plant place ground cover 7 Plant Place Ground cover 1 the plant place ground cover best Plant Place Ground cover 2 the plant place ground cover the plant place ground cover 11 the plant place ground cover 8 the plant place ground cover 12 The plant place ground cover 5 the plant place ground cover 9 The plant place ground cover 4 The plant place ground cover 3 the plant place ground cover 6

Olympic National Forest Announces Salal Permit Sale Dates

Thurston Talk - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 5:24pm


Submitted by Olympic National Forest

Olympic National Forest has announced four dates on which permits for commercial salal collection will be sold. A total of 100 permits will be available on each of the sale days, divided among different harvest areas.

Permits will be issued from the Forks, Quinault, and Quilcene district offices during business hours on the following dates:

  • September 10, 2014
  • November 5, 2014
  • January 7, 2015
  • March 18, 2015

On each sale day, 50 permits will be offered from the Quilcene office for harvest areas located within Mason County and the east side of Clallam and Jefferson counties; 25 permits will be offered from the Forks office for the west side of Clallam County; and 25 permits will be offered from the Lake Quinault office for harvest areas within Grays Harbor County and the west side of Jefferson County.

Harvest unit boundaries are defined by roads or recognizable land features. A map of the harvest areas will be distributed with the sale of each permit.  Permit holders will be limited to no more than 200 hands per day (1 hand = approx. 20 – 25 stems).  The Forest Service recommends that salal harvesters wear at least one piece of high-visibility clothing while in the woods.

A lottery system will be used if the demand for permits exceeds the supply.  Each permit will cost $150 and can be used for up to two months.  A valid United States picture identification will be required at the time of purchase and those buying the permits must be at least 18 years of age.  Cash or checks only will be accepted; credit and debit cards will not be accepted. Only one permit may be purchased per person per sale day.

Salal (Gaultheria shallon) is an understory shrub commonly used in the floral industry.  It grows in dense thickets throughout western Washington and Oregon. For additional information about salal permit sales, please contact Chris Dowling, Special Forest Products Program Manager, at 360-956-2272.  For general information about Olympic National Forest, visit

Sand in the City Inspires Art and Science Learning with 40+ Free Activities for Kids

Thurston Talk - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 5:21pm



Submitted by The Hands On Children’s Museum

 Aaron Barna

Photo Credit: Aaron Barna

The South Sound’s largest family festival, Sand in the City®,  is stimulating children’s love and appreciation of art and science through more than 40 free, educator-organized activities in this two-day event.

Families are invited to bring their children of all ages to Sand in the City on Aug. 23, and Sunday, Aug. 24, at the Hands On Children’s Museum on Olympia’s East Bay.

The heart of the festival is a Masters’ Sand Sculpting Exhibition, which will take place from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Sunday. Visitors can view the masterpieces and vote for their favorite sculptures. The winners will be announced at 4 p.m. Sunday.

The Masters’ Exhibition is part of the free Beach Party where children can play in giant sandboxes loaded with sand toys and sculpting tools, and participate in 40 interactive art and science activities in the museum spread around the East Bay Plaza and streets adjacent to the museum.

Activities include a rock climbing wall, giant bubbles, a Tot Spot Early Learning Center and museum-led art activities. Make-and-take Polynesian crafts include eruptible

 Aaron Barna

Photo Credit: Aaron Barna

mini volcanoes, Hawaiian leis, wax paper flowers and sand bands. Inside the museum, families can learn about the music of the Pacific Islands and make musical instruments and crafts. New this year is a life-sized, pin-hole camera you can walk inside.

All-day entertainment on the stage includes martial arts, country music, African drummers, young fiddlers, Zumba and Irish dancers. Favorite local food vendors and food trucks will be on site.

Sunday, Aug. 24, is Grandparents’ Day from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Families can enjoy all of the fun activities of Saturday’s Beach Party and participate in additional activities designed for children and grandparents to do together.

During Sand in the City, all event activities and entertainment on the streets surrounding the museum and the East Bay Public Plaza are free. Donations are appreciated and support the museum’s Free Access Program at the Hands On Children’s Museum.

  Aaron Barna

Photo Credit: Aaron Barna

Festival-goers can also explore museum exhibits Aug. 22-24 with a discounted admission rate to the museum of just $5 per person. Families can play and learn in nine themed galleries and 150 hands-on exhibits, including MakeSpace in the Arts & Parts Studio, where kids can tinker, design and build using real tools and materials.

For the price of admission, festival visitors can also explore the museum’s Outdoor Discovery Center, including new exhibits opening on Sand in the City weekend such as the giant trike loop, stage and Children’s Garden in the Outdoor Discovery Center.

For more information about Sand in the City®, visit


Artesian Brewfest Showcases Tumwater’s Brewing History

Thurston Talk - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 5:01pm



Submitted by The Port of Olympia

Tumwater artisan brewfestOver 30 Pacific Northwest breweries plus Tumwater’s original Olympia beer will be featured at the 2nd annual Tumwater Artesian Brewfest on August 23rd.

Festival-goers can:

  • Taste the beers
  • Sip wine from Thurston County wineries
  • Win big in the Beer Stein Holding and Hole in One contests
  • Play Super Sized Beer Pong, Cornhole, Volleyball and other games
  • Listen to local bands

As the partner in the Designated Driver program of the 21+ event, the Port of Olympia will have free water and soda available at the Port booth for designated drivers.

The Brewfest runs from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Tumwater Valley Driving Range. Those who join the free 3-mile fun run at noon receive a complimentary beer mug and early admission.

Save on pre-sale tickets until August 22 at noon. Ticket includes admission to the event, tasting mug and five tasting tokens. For more information and to purchase tickets:

Volunteer Meeting!

Northern - Olympia All Ages Project - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 5:00pm

We need you! We have tons of shows lined up in the next couple of months, and they all need door and sound staff. Come hear about how you can help sustain Northern, the only entirely all ages music and art venue in Olympia.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment

4th Annual Love Our Local Fest

OlyBlog Home Page - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 9:59am
Event:  Sun, 08/24/2014 - 1:00pm - 9:00pm

From today's inbox:

Website at logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

Statues, bees, food and punks (Olyblogosphere for August 18, 2014)

Olympia Time - Mon, 08/18/2014 - 5:43am
1. The Olympia's Plinth Project from OlySketcher.

2. Bees from that Amicus blog.

3. Our best local food blogger was out. Back in now? I dunno, she showed us a pi pie though. That was cute:
Besides, we’ve all dropped out of life at some point during the course of it, but no one likes to admit to that. I could brag about finishing my Master’s degree; I could tell you stories about the US healthcare systems and a crazy neurologist that would make you want to emigrate to a cold, dark Scandinavian country; I could say that I was running out of recipes, which would be entirely true; I could just pretend it didn’t happen like I do with some of the jobs I leave off my resume, but I think I’m just going to admit to it. I dropped out. I gave out. I burned out. 4. A small piece of Olympia music scene, RVIVR playing Party Queen at the Flophouse from Campfire Island.

Psycho Mama Art Opening with Emma Kohlmann and Sonya Sombreuil Cohen

Northern - Olympia All Ages Project - Sun, 08/17/2014 - 5:00pm

Sunday, August 17th, 8pm opening.

Emma Kohlmann
Sonya Sombreuil Cohen

With a conceptual DJ set by Alex Coxen.


Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Shelby Adams: Embracing Everyone via the Universal Language of Music

Thurston Talk - Sun, 08/17/2014 - 7:51am



By Tali Haller

dairy queenJust six months ago, Shelby Adams adamantly told her friends, “I am not going to college!” Now she is headed to one of America’s most prestigious music schools, the Berklee College of Music, which has a 19% acceptance rate according to data from U.S. News.

“I’ve always been inspired by music,” Shelby said. “I was that kid that was always singing,  listening to the radio, and just absorbing melodies and lyrics.” Although in her younger days Shelby dreamed of becoming a zookeeper (she loves animals), as she got older, she realized that singing was the one thing she loved to do and truly enjoyed. “I started thinking of my music as a career and now I’m pursuing it,” she explained.

shelby adams

In the fall of 2014, Shelby will attend Berklee College of Music in Boston as an incoming freshman. She hopes to double major in songwriting and vocal performance.

Surprisingly enough, the first song Shelby ever played for her parents wasn’t until sophomore year (age 15)  when she sang Justin Bieber’s “Mistletoe.” She taught herself the guitar part all on her own. “To me, Shelby is a true musician. She doesn’t look as much towards what others have done and are doing, as much as she looks inside herself to see how she feels and what she wants to create – this goes both for her music and other areas of her life, such as her trendsetting fashion ways,” commented a close friend. In fact, Shelby was voted “Best Dressed” in the Olympia High School Senior Superlatives for her creative, unique outfits.

When her parents heard her sing, they saw real potential and had her start taking formal guitar lessons from local music teacher Dylan Cochran. (Cochran also teaches other young musicians, such as singer and guitarist Emma Jaques.)

However, it was when Shelby first performed in a recital, playing “Payphone” by Maroon 5 and “Fix You” by Coldplay, that the idea of being a musician really started to take shape. Then, in the following summer at camp, Shelby played for a crowd of more than 400 people at the camp talent show. “I started getting a reputation as a musician. People would see me and tell me how good at singing I was,” she remembers. At this point, it began to dawn on her that she actually did have true talent.

Following her passion, Shelby began writing some of her own songs. “I’m very, very selective about the songs I write, so I currently only have three originals: ‘There’s Something About the Rain,’ ‘We,’ and ‘Almost,’” Shelby mentions.

shelby adams

Shelby Adams has been playing the guitar for less than 4 years and already has a 6-song Demo CD.

She does have many songs that are unfinished. “My songs are extremely personal. I want to use my own experiences to make relatable music so that others will know they’re not alone in their feelings,” she emphasizes. “Music is a universal language and I want to speak to people through it.”

During her junior year, Shelby began recording a 6-track Demo CD (two originals and four covers) with Jason Suko at South Sound Sound. Through that, she made connections that would land her future gigs, such as a gig playing outside the Washington Center for the Performing Arts during the 2014 Spring Arts Walk Celebration. “I left my guitar case out for tips and that was the first time I had ever made money from performing,” recalls Shelby.

Over the years, Shelby has played for many local venues, including Cortney Kelley’s downtown studio and many performances for her high school. Shelby’s early performances were all about gaining experience and the crowd’s response was always encouraging. “People would come up and ask where they could buy my music, which always came as a surprise to me. It was crazy knowing people liked my sound enough to pay for it,” laughs Shelby.

shelby adams

Traveling to Tanzania during the summer after junior year, Shelby learned a lot about both connecting with others in diverse cultures.

Somewhat true to the musician stereotype of “go with the flow,” Shelby doesn’t know where the future will take her. “I know I want to try different things and travel,” Shelby said, her love for traveling coming from past visits to Europe and Tanzania. Her goal is to bring diversity to her music. “I love upbeat stuff. I love beats. But I also love the acoustic sound, drums, and other instruments,” Shelby explains.

“I want versatility. I want songs that will make people cry (in a good way) and then songs that will make people dance. I want music that a huge range of people can enjoy – kids, teens, and adults.” Aside from having an idea of what she wants, Shelby hasn’t been planning her future very far in advance. In the music industry, this may be a good thing – you never know what plot twists will arise and change your whole trajectory.

Shelby was never set on going to college until she received her acceptance letter from Berklee. “At first, I had my mind set on not going to college. When my mom encouraged me to apply to Berklee College of Music, I thought, ‘What do I have to lose?’” she explained.

shelby adams

Shelby’s dad, Marshall Adams, supports her as she performs outside of The Washington Center during Spring Arts Walk.

After looking into the college, Shelby found that Berklee’s modern approach to music and its prime city location really resonated with her. “I signed up for an audition on the very last day. I went in for an interview and then I had my audition, which I thought I completely failed. I came out in tears,” she recollects.

And yet, two months later, on March 31st, she received her acceptance email. “I started screaming, and crying, and I was just hugging my mom,” she says laughing. “If you don’t get in, it doesn’t say you’re not a good musician. But if you do get in, it definitely speaks of your talent.”

At college, she hopes to double major in vocal performance and songwriting. She also wants to take production classes. “A school like Berklee is so exciting because they have a never ending list of classes, most of which are music-based,” says Shelby, practically glowing.

“My success isn’t going to be measured by how many people know my name or how much money I have. I’m fine with doing small venues and seeing the world, sharing my life with others,” Shelby states confidently.


Coach Derrick Pringle’s Focus Is Being A Winner On And Off The Court

Thurston Talk - Sun, 08/17/2014 - 7:48am



By Gail Wood

little caesars logoFor Derrick Pringle, it’s never just been about the final score or the hurrah for pulling out a win.

It’s never just been about the won/loss record. Although throughout his 17 years of coaching basketball – from YMCA youth basketball to head women’s coach at Grays Harbor College and now the new head boys’ basketball coach at Shelton High School – he’s always been driven to win.

That’s just not the primary reason he got into coaching in 1998 after serving 20 years in the Army. For Pringle, a high school All-American linebacker and an all-state performer in track growing up in Washington D.C., coaching is about mentoring. It’s about shaping and influencing lives.

“It’s about the all-around student athlete,” Pringle says. “What we want to do is prepare them for life.”

Coach Derrick Pringle works with area youth to develop skills on and off the court.

Coach Derrick Pringle works with area youth to develop skills on and off the court.

Basketball is a tool and a lure to accomplish that. Besides teaching the basics and talking about shooting techniques and defensive positions, Pringle also talks about accountability.

“What we want to do is prepare them for life,” Pringle shares. “We want these kids to go out into the community and give back and be a part of something.”

To accomplish that, Pringle attaches life lessons to basketball. For example, part of the entry fee for a one-day basketball tournament this summer was a pair of used, but in good-shape, sneakers from each player plus a packet of new socks. It was a sneaker shoe-drive for homeless kids. Randy Hedin-Baughn, a policeman in Tumwater, helped Pringle organize the tournament which drew four teams.

“Randy came up with the idea,” explains Pringle, who works full time for the Department of Social and Health Services. “It’s a way of helping these kids on the street. Give them hope by giving them some socks and a decent pair of shoes.”

On August 23 and 24, Pringle will again host Hoopin’ For Life, a two-day basketball tournament that mixes hoops and hope. Since 2000, Pringle has used the tournament to raise the awareness for bone marrow donor registration. Last year a representative from the American Bone Marrow Donor Registry attended, signing up local donors. The tournament’s mission is to raise awareness of leukemia and other blood cancers and the need for bone marrow donors. The tournament raised $2,800 last year.  The event will be held at the South Sound Sports Center in Tumwater.  Call  360-556-4342 to register your team.

Pringle runs the DAP Hoops program, combining a love or basketball and his Christian values.

Pringle runs the DAP Hoops program, combining a love or basketball and his Christian values.

Pringle feels if one person’s life can be saved because of this tournament then it will be worth it.

Over the years, Pringle, in addition to coaching school teams, has been the director for DAP Hoops, a youth basketball program in Tumwater. DAP is an acronym for Discipline, Attitude, Positive Performance. It’s a Christian based program that shares the gospel through mentoring and basketball. The goal of the program is to help bring players and families closer together and assist them in becoming better student-athletes, having a positive influence on their community.

Pringle, who works with Fellowship of Christian Athletes, shares his Christian faith at Bible studies with his teams. “I tell people that when they open the door, we’re going to give them the Good News,” Pringle says. “Last year, we did a big family prayer. Prayed for all the kids to have a good year.”  With seven teams last year, he worked with over 70 kids.

“It’s cool to see what happens,” Pringle smiles. “Some kids come back and say to me ‘Coach, I want to know more about God.’”

As a non-profit, Pringle, who coached the Grays Harbor College women’s basketball team for four years, said he barely makes enough money with the entry fees to pay for the building rental next to the driving range in Tumwater where he trains players ages 4-years-old up to college. “God has blessed us to be in this building for two years,” Pringle says.

As someone who’s coached everything from YMCA youth basketball to Evergreen State College to  Grays Harbor Community College and now, in the coming school year to Shelton High School, Pringle is living his dream. Pringle’s path began as an assistant coach for the youth basketball teams his two children played on and has grown into a passion and career.

Pringle will start the 2014-2015 school year as the new head boys basketball coach at Shelton High School.

Pringle will start the 2014-2015 school year as the new head boys basketball coach at Shelton High School.

“God has blessed me,” Pringle states. “I can say that I really enjoyed the opportunity that coaching college gave me.”

His time in the military – he retired in 1998 as a sergeant – taught him about the importance of teamwork. He believes it taught him that you can’t always take things on alone. But a unified team can “conquer all.”

“It’s a matter of playing together,” Pringle explains.

And now, as the boys’ basketball coach at Shelton High School, he hopes to return that program back to success with winners on and off the court. As always, he’s looking forward to the challenge.


2014 Olympia Pet Parade Photos

Thurston Talk - Sun, 08/17/2014 - 7:00am



dairy queenPhotos by Morgan Willie

Olympia played host to the 85th Annual Pet Parade on Saturday, August 16.  The annual tradition celebrates our dearest four-legged, winged, and furry creatures.

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