Recent local blog posts

BARE: A Boudoir Exhibition” at B2

South Sound Arts - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 1:05pm

Published in the Weekly Volcano, Feb. 12, 2015
"Winged Asana" mixed media sculpture by Marsha Glazière
"White Face Dancer" drawing by Guy AndersonMaybe I shouldn’t review this latest show at B2 Fine Art because I am in the show, but not reviewing it would not be fair to the gallery or the other participating artists. So I won’t mention my own work other than to say it is an honor to be included in a show with artists of such stature.
“BARE: A Boudoir Exhibition” is a show of nudes in drawing, sculpture, painting and photography. The gallery warns that children under 18 should be accompanied by an adult. When taking notes for this review I was struck with how often I noted similarities to works by famous artists. Maryanne Hanson’s sketches reminded me of drawings by Giacometti — thin figures (but not so emaciated as Giacometti’s) drawn with energetic lines. I was particularly struck with a set of three figures hung in the windows. Paul Dahlquist’s photos of male nude dancers and his photo montages reminded me of Robert Mapplethorpe’s gay erotica. Although not quite as blatantly sexual as some of Mapplethorpe’s photos, they come pretty close. Nina Mikhailenko’s small, classical female nudes have a lot in common with paintings by George Luks, but with more expressive and sparse paint application. Francisco Zunigo’s three charcoal drawings are like Picasso’s heavy figures from his classical period. These are among the most impressive works in the show with their smooth modeling and lyrical contour lines.Others were too uniquely themselves to call other artists to mind.
Guy Anderson, the most famous artist in the show and also the most impressive, is represented by five life-size drawings of standing male nudes on brown paper and one smaller sketch in ink on paper. Each of his works is an isolated figure drawn with a strength and directness that leaps off the page. The contrasting unmodulated color areas and the harsh contour lines reverberate against one another in such a way as to enliven these stoic looking male figures. At the opening and again a week later I kept returning to these fine works.
Marsha Glazière is showing a single piece, and it’s a knockout. Called “Winged Asana,” it is a mixed-media metal sculpture of a woman posed in a dynamic dance move. Perhaps you’ve seen some of her paintings. In this sculpture she has done with various mesh screens and metal plates what she does with paint, which is to create a densely textured clash of complementary forms and surface marks that are nevertheless nicely unified, that speak simultaneously of the subject and the materials. It is outstanding.
Rounding out this selection of art are seven pastels by the incomparable team of Ric Hall and Ron Schmidt. These works combine elements of surrealism and German expressionism with male and female figures in groups and in various environments with dark fauvist colors and strange juxtapositions. Often Hall and Schmidt’s figures meld together to form single figures with multiple parts. They can be unnerving, but I enjoy them. Whenever I see their work I feel like I’m in a cabaret in Berlin circa 1930, or in the midst of a nightmare. They are scary, funny, and beautifully crafted.
Also showing are fine works by Chuck Smart and Georgianna Malloff.
B2 Fine Art Gallery, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, till 9 p.m. Third Thursdays, through March 14, 711 St. Helens Avenue, Tacoma, 253.238.5065]
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

MK Guth: Wednesday, February 18th, 11:30-1:00 pm in Lecture Hall 1

Evergreen Artists Lecture Series - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 11:02am

BedSmall shifts in what is familiar amplify human presence and speak to the intricacies of social relations in MK Guth’s work. Her videos depart from everyday scenarios into the site of fiction as an entry point to more complicated issues of identity and self and her sculptural installations often act as visual containers for audience interaction.

M.K. Guth is a visual artist working in video, photography, sculpture, performance, and interactive based exchange projects. In 2012, Marylhurst University released the first Monograph on Guth’s work. The NY Times, Flash Art, ArtForum on line 500 words, Art News, Art in America, and Sculpture magazine are just a few of the periodicals where Guth’s work has been discussed. She is a recipient of a Bonnie Bronson Award, a Betty Bowen Special Recognition Award through the Seattle Art Museum and an Award of Merit from the Bellevue Art Museum.

She has exhibited with numerous galleries and institutions including, The Whitney Museum of American Art, NYC, Boise Art Museum, The Melbourne International Arts Festival, Australia, Nottdance Festival, Nottingham, England, Swiss Institute, NYC, Gallery-Pfeister, Copenhagen, Franklin Parrasch Gallery NYC, Betty Moody Houston TX, White Columns, NYC, The Art Production Fund (NYC / Las Vegas), Yerba Buena, in San Francisco and the Henry Art Museum.  Guth is a member and the originator of RED SHOE DELIVERY SERVICE, a collaborative interactive video/performance project.  (with Molly Dilworth and Cris Moss)  MK Guth is represented by the Elizabeth Leach Gallery in Portland Oregon and is an Associate Professor at the Pacific Northwest College of Art.


Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Joining Sound Transit

OlyBlog Home Page - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 8:49am

There's been some recent discussion about getting the Sounder train from Seattle to Olympia by joining Sound Transit's service area.  (To be precise, there have been posts at Olympia WA, and the Seattle Transit Blog, and Olympia Time.)

Well, who knows what the future will bring... but we commute to Seattle and back by bus to grandparent once a week, and last night we rode the 592 back to Olympia from Seattle. This is the closest thing we now have to direct commuter service (except for van pools) - a two year pilot, morning and evening service, Olympia to Seattle in the morning and Seattle to Olympia in the evening, with no transfers and three very brief stops on the way. It's not that different an experience from real bus rapid transit, and I doubt that it's much slower than the train would be after it toddled into town from the main line. Anyway, we left Seattle on the 5:37, and we were the only people going to Olympia. (In fact, at the Hawks Prairie Park and Ride, when the other three remaining passengers got off, the driver looked back at us dubiously and asked, "Are you going all the way to the end?") I haven't looked at the ridership statistics for this trial project, but that made me suspect ridership is definitely not high...

If people really want train service, starting to use the commuter transit options that we have and generating some statistics to show there's an unmet demand might be a good first step... logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

Roses, Potted Plants from Bayview and Ralph’s Thriftway Say “I Love You” on Valentine’s Day

Thurston Talk - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 6:56am



olympia valentines flowersLike so many holidays, Valentine’s Day can be spotted a mile away. Christmas? Look for anything red and green. Halloween? Orange and black. July Fourth? Red, white, and blue. Valentine’s Day? Gorgeous shades of pink and red.

But this year, why not go green? Olympia’s Ralph’s and Bayview Thriftway offer gorgeous floral tributes that are greener for the planet and save some green in your wallet.

Holiday flowers for your loved one are a long-standing Valentine’s Day tradition but often a bit of a splurge. This season let the staff at Thriftway’s Finishing Touch Florist and Gifts help provide an amazing gift for any recipient at both reasonable prices and a greener environmental impact.

Potted plants are one easy, beautiful way to say”‘I love you.” Spring bulbs like tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths come in a variety of colors and can be replanted in your garden or window-box once they’ve finished flowering indoors.

Finishing Touch Florist operates within Ralph’s Thriftway and provides both store locations with a dazzling array of both potted and cut floral options. With the majority of Valentine’s Day flowers under $15, buyers can choose from a selection of garden perennials like lavender, budding spring bulbs, scented miniature roses, and gorgeous houseplants like peace lilies, kalanchoe, and an array of succulents or herbs.

If your loved one is of a more subtle—or pollen-sensitive—variety, Finishing Touch has gorgeous air plant terrariums, pink-hued polka-dot plants, and brightly potted edible herbs. Holiday offerings of all types can be found in gorgeously wrapped, brightly bowed plastic pots or reusable heart-themed planters in ceramic, resin, or stone.

olympia valentines flowersBut let’s admit it, there’s nothing quite like a lavish bouquet of cut long-stemmed roses to set the mood. Finishing Touch has them in abundance, with colors across the spectrum. They also offer a variety of lilies, tulips, daisies, and mixed bouquets for every taste, size, style, and budget.

Both Thriftway locations will be stocking their floral displays constantly throughout the big holiday weekend. While there, pair your flowers with in-house made, freshly-dipped chocolate strawberries. Thriftway staff will be on-site creating these limited luxuries February 13 and 14 only so don’t miss out.

Need the perfect Valentine’s Day trifecta? Chocolate, flowers, and wine can not only be found at either Thriftway location, but the store’s knowledgeable staff will make sure you choose exactly the right pairing for your budget and meal.

You can call Finishing Touch at 360-943-9921 but trust me when I say it’s so much better to stop by. Wander the sights and scents of springtime’s finest offerings; you never know just what will catch your eye. Better yet, chat with the on-site floral team about the perfect addition to your weekend’s festivities.

Ralph’s Thriftway and Finishing Touch Florist and Gifts are at 1908 East 4th and Bayview Thriftway can be found at 516 West 4th.

Thrifty Thurston Mixes Culture and Fun at the Olympia Old Time Music Festival

Thurston Talk - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 6:43am



By Holly Smith Peterson

capital heating and coolingIt was Olympia resident Emily Teachout’s 40th birthday party that inspired the original Old Time Music Festival in the South Sound.

“We gathered a bunch of friends to play Old Time music, which is a great time to get everyone together and was so much fun in the middle of winter,” Teachout remembers. “We promised to get everyone together every year to do it again. The impetus was that it was simply a way to connect people to have fun around music in the wintertime.”

Those comments sparked the original Olympia Old Time Music Festival, back in 2008. That event drew roughly 200 attendees, all by word of mouth.

olympia old time music festival

The Olympia Old Time Music Festival isn’t just for pros. Amateur musicians are invited to bring instruments and join in on jams.

Now that you know how old Teachout is, what she emphasizes as more important is that the festival has been successful from the get-go, and has grown by leaps and bounds since that first year.

“The Old Time Music community is pretty tight-knit.  That first year we just organized and told friends, who told their friends,” says Teachout, who, along with her husband, was one of the event’s founders. “We were also inspired by the Portland Old Time Music Gathering that took place a little earlier in the year. We spread the word down there, and in Seattle, and that brought a lot of people from both cities. That was then; this is now, and this year we expect more than 500.”

Teachout herself wasn’t a professional musician by trade, but when her husband bought her a fiddle out of the blue 14 years ago she connected with a woman who taught her the basics of the instrument. That progressed into a jaunt to Port Townsend for the Festival of American Fiddle Tunes, which “blew me away,” Teachout says.

“It was so danceable and fun, and I said, ‘That’s what I want to do,’” she remembers. “Then my husband started playing banjo, and my daughter started playing the fiddle … and now we have a family band Fiddlie-I-Ay, while I’m also in the trio Yodelady.”

Both of these have been feature acts in the Olympia Old Time Music Festival over the past seven seasons, which will be held this year from February 12 – 14 in downtown Olympia.

This year, the festival has vastly expanded their lineup of performers and participants. You can listen to authentic Old Time music from across the country and bring your instrument and play along at your inspiration.

“The old time music that we play is pretty participatory,” says Teachout. “It’s really more created towards people playing music just for the fun of it than for the performance.”

olympia old time music festival

Nashville native T-Claw will be calling dances and teaching workshops about Old Time music.

What’s changed in seven years? Says Teachout, whose husband and daughters also play in the venue, the basic format is the same. The main Old Time instruments include the banjo, claw hammer and fiddle, as well as the ukelele and cello, with many unique touches ranging from finger picking to resounds and slides. The upshot is that it’s mostly string, and all acoustic.

Equally interesting is the diversity of performers that sign on for the festival each year.

“We try to get musicians from across the country, and every year it’s very a diversified community of those who are historic and tradition bearers, ” Teachout explains. “At every event debriefing meeting we ask, ‘What were the magic moments?’ And we try to repeat them.”

Since the bulk of Old Time music is passed down by song rather than the written word, from community to community, the organizers and founders focus on finding musicians who appreciate and honor those very traditions. The Appalachian region is key to performance highlights, such as in 2013 when “mountain music” experts Elizabeth Laprelle & Anna Roberts-Gevalt from Cedar Springs, VA brought out their “Crank Music” shadow storytelling behind a hand-cranked story screen.

olympia old time music festival

At the Olympia Old Time Music Festival the costumes and instruments are as unique as the music.

“It’s a really compelling way to engage people in music, because it’s a scroll that tells the stories of music in a ballad,” says Teachout. “Elizabeth has an amazing, haunting voice and is a compelling storyteller and an old soul even though she’s only in her 20s, and Anna is an amazing instrumentalist. People were totally blown away.”

Another hit from past years was Erin Marshall, from Dallas, VA, the first woman to win the Appalachian String Band Festival.

“She’s an amazing accompaniment fiddler, originally from British Columbia, who then completed her studies in Virginia,” Teachout says. “She had to fight to get her weight in the performing lineup.”

It’s acts like these that are attracting visitors by the hundreds to the Olympia Old Time Music Festival in 2015. The event is even more compelling because of its cost-conscious and kid-friendly policies. (Check out the schedule that includes many kid-oriented, free workshops.)

Says Teachout, “We try to keep it really affordable because we want this music to be accessible to everyone. And if you’re a musician, you can come in as a beginning player and catch on with the rest of us pretty quickly.”

olympia old time music festival

The Olympia Old Time Music Festival is held in downtown Olympia from February 12 – 14, 2015.

A weekend pass is just $30 or buy day tickets for $15. (Tickets can be purchased here.) Scholarships are available. And there’s also free admission for kids.

“As founders, we made the decision to make this a tradition,” says Teachout. “We’re most well-known for being very family-friendly. And there’s a great group of kids who come that are great musicians, and that’s been encouraging to see.”

How are the last days of preparation prior to the festival? The team forms small groups for overall event review, website wrap-up and promotional finalization. They also use the time to tweak duties for their kids, who have fun making buttons, providing performance run-throughs, training greeters, and participating in other key duties.

“It’s a labor of love, and every year around this time I find myself anxious that things are going to come apart, or won’t come together,” Teachout confesses. “But this time I’m not stressing about it, because it always does.”

Teachout also places an emphasis on the sponsors, as the event depends on donations and trades from area companies such as Compass Rose and the Olympia Food Co-Op. For an event that was originally run on crowd funding donations to one that’s now in the black – the main expenses being the performers, workshop leaders and venue booking itself – Teachout is pleased at how community support has grown the event. But to expand more throughout the South Sound, it needs even more financial backing.

“The Kickstarter campaign carried us through for the last couple of years, but really we’re still on a shoestring budget,” she says. “We’re only just learning to ask potential sponsors to see the value in what we do, and to give back to the community in a way that’s unique and beneficial.”

olympia old time music festival

Kids and adults both gather ‘round for fun-filled improvisation music sessions during a workshop at the Olympia Old Time Music Festival.

In the end, though, Teachout and her family, and all of the event founders, organizers, volunteers and sponsors encourage you to visit for one event or the whole weekend.

“If you don’t know Old Time music, or if you ever had any inkling of wanting to play a stringed instrument, just bring yours down and you can take it out of the case and you’ll probably learn thing or two,” she says. “Put your iPad, laptop and phone screens away and just look people in the eye and dance to the music and enjoy a good time.”

The Olympia Old Time Music Festival begins on Thursday, February 12 with most activities happening on Saturday, February 14.  The event is held at the Olympia Ballroom and lasts all weekend.  Find a complete schedule of performers and workshops here.

All photos courtesy Olympia Old Time Music Festival.

Thrifty Thurston highlights inexpensive family fun in Thurston County. The weekly series focuses on family-friendly activities throughout our community. 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.

Shayla Smothers Helps Black Hills Win Basketball Games with Her New Role as a Scorer

Thurston Talk - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 6:27am



By Gail Wood

rivers edgeAs the only returning starter, Shayla Smothers knew she’d have to become her team’s go-to shooter.

Standing in at 6-foot, Smothers, a senior and a three-year starter for Black Hills High School’s girls basketball team, had the size and the shot to fill that role. She hasn’t disappointed.

black hills basketball

The four seniors on Black Hills girls basketball team were honored during the team’s last home game. They are (from left to right) Lauren Furu, Shayla Smothers, coach Tanya Greenfield, Lexi Tarrow, and Caitlin Grimm.

After averaging about seven points last year on a team filled with shooters and that reached the regional playoffs, Smothers boosted her average to 16 points a game this season.

“I felt I had to do a real big step up in scoring,” Smothers said.

It was a mental adjustment for Smothers. Before she’d become a scorer, she’d first have to become a shooter.

“The big thing for me is I like to pass and I try not to be a selfish player,” Smothers said. “This year I felt I had to be a little more selfish. Because we had less people who were scorers, I felt I had to take on more responsibility and be a little more selfish at times.”

It’s been a winning formula. Black Hills, with a freshman at point guard, is 14-7 heading into the district playoffs, even surprised their coach. With a young and talented Lindsey Nurmi, a freshman, at point guard, the Wolves have been the surprise of their league, finishing in second place.

“She’s exceeded more than I expected, actually,” said Tanya Greenfield, who is in her third season as Black Hill’s head coach.

black hills basketball

Shayla Smothers wins the tip for Black Hills to start the game against Chehalis.

But like Smothers’ adjustment to be the go-to scorer, Nurmi had to adjust to high school basketball.

“She’s had to get used to the pace of the game,” Greenfield said. “High school ball is faster. They’re stronger. They’re bigger. And she’s had to adjust. But she did well.”

As result, so have the Wolves. But before Nurmi could be that effective passer, she had to gain in confidence. And the team had to gain confidence in her.

“We went through some growing pains,” Greenfield said.

Nurmi had a secret edge to helping her make that leap from middle school basketball to high school varsity. It was her sister, Nicole, who started for Greenfield last year as a senior.

“She, in a way, had been in the program because of her sister,” Greenfield said. “The girls knew her. They had played with her a little bit. So she had some credibility coming into that.”

To help Nurmi, Greenfield has rotated Emma Duff and Nurmi at point guard. But Duff is only a sophomore and also had some growing up to do. Game time has helped solve that.

black hills basketball

The Wolves play some tight defense against Chehalis.

“What I learned halfway through the season is Lindsey needs to share that responsibility at point guard,” Greenfield said. “Emma has the good ball handling skills. She’s harder to guard. Once we put Emma at the point guard role on and off throughout the game, it helped Lindsey.”

Besides Smothers, the Wolves have also been getting points out of Duff and Meeri Gummerus, a foreign exchange student from Finland who is 6-foot and plays forward. They’re both averaging about 10 points each.

Lauren Furu, a 5’9″ senior guard, has been another important cog to the Wolves’ success. Her contribution isn’t so much points scored, although she is averaging six points. As a team captain, it’s more of an emotional lift. She’s the designated encourager.

“I feel like my role is a leadership role and to maintain the team,” Furu said. “To bring energy on the court.”

Despite her team’s inexperience with just one starter returning, Furu came into the season optimistic. She liked what she saw during the summer league.

“I had a feeling it was going to be a good year,” Furu said. “So far, it has been. It was a wait and see type of thing when we started.”

black hills basketball

Senior forward Shayla Smothers puts up an inside shot against Chehalis.

From the start of the season, Smothers has been the steady scorer her team needed her to be. She scored a season-high 23 in a 66-59 win against Puyallup. Then she had 21 in a 67-57 win against Kelso and 20 in a loss against Timberline.

“Shayla has stepped it up this year,” Greenfield said. “We always know consistently what we’re going to get from her. She can score inside. She can score outside. She has a great shot. She runs the floor well. It’s nice to have that kind of player.”

Basketball is in Smothers DNA. Her father, Steve Smothers, played basketball at Saint Martin’s University in the late 1980s. She’s played basketball since she was in grade school, showing talent from the start. She hopes to play in college next year.

“She took to the game from the start,” Steve Smothers said before Black Hills’ game with Chehalis. “She’s always wanted to play. It wasn’t something I had to force on her.”

All along, Shayla hasn’t just focused on playing basketball. With her 3.5 GPA, she’s a true definition of student-athlete.

black hills basketball

On the Wolves’ final home game of the season, their four seniors and their parents were honored.

“She’s always been a good student,” Steve said. “It’s been a good mix. She’s big on being a student-athlete.”

Greenfield has watched her team grow up this season. She saw the good and the bad when she watched her team jump out to an impressive 12-4 lead after the first quarter against league-leading Chehalis. But the Bearcats recovered and pulled out a 55-29 victory, outscoring Black Hills 51-17 over the last three quarters.

“I talk a lot about peaking in the playoffs a lot,” Greenfield said. “We want to be playing our best basketball in the playoffs.”

The 2A district playoffs begin February 11 at Saint Martin’s University.


The other side of the Sound Transit to Olympia coin: Olympia is an Island, leave us alone

Olympia Time - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 5:37am
The brainstorming about getting passenger rail into Olympia is alive!

Olympia's best blog took their crack earlier and the Seattle Transit blog did their's yesterday.  All smart people all say, sure it could happen. But, there are obstacles. Sure, that makes sense. It hasn't happened, so obviously there are reasons why it hasn't.

I was going to reserve this post for a exploration into the past of the old Lacey to Olympia line that was ripped up and turned into a sidewalk. Alright, a glorified sidewalk.

But, after all this discussion, I think we need to bring up another topic. Should Olympia be connected by rail to Seattle?

You're going to say: Of Course! State Capitol Right??

And, I'm going to respond with a selfish rejoinder. Well, its not like anyone is going to steal the state capitol from us anytime soon. So, why make it easier for people to get here?

Right now Olympia's economy is supported by a steady flow of tax money into our community to support fairly well paying and stable state jobs. That's not going anywhere. Jobs come and go, but overall, state work is pretty stable.

We're also on the far southern edge of Pugetopolis. So, if overgrowth is going to happen, it'll come from the north. But, in a way, we're buffered from that because back 100 years ago Pierce County stole more than half of the Nisqually Reservation and gave it to the Army. Joint Base Lewis McCord sits out there like a massive empty breakwater against King/Pierce County growth.

Eventually Sparkland will reach around through Roy and Yelm and connect with Lacey. But, for the time being, we're safe.

Connecting us to Seattle via convenient rail is just one more way to make Olympia a bedroom community living in the shadow of Seattle and King County.

And, in at least one part of my brain, more people living in Olympia and commuting up to Seattle for work is not a good thing.

Now, using that old Lacey to Olympia rail line that we turned into a glorified sidewalk for light-rail, a way to just get around town? Thats a great idea?

Maybe just using the old spur of that lost rail line as a Sound Transit alternative to Centennial Station. I don't know, maybe? Better than downtown Olympia, I suppose.

Washingtonian of the Day: Fred Beckey

Janine's Little Hollywood - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 12:17am

Above: Washington State Governor Jay Inslee waits to speak as an enthusiastic crowd gives legendary climber Fred Beckey,92, a standing ovation on Wednesday night at The Evergreen State College. Beckey gave a detailed, lively narration of his 100 Favorite North American Climbs, met with admirers and signed books until 10:00 p.m.
By Janine

Legendary Northwest climber Fred Beckey, 92, commanded the attention of an appreciative crowd who gave him a standing ovation on Wednesday night at The Evergreen State College in Olympia. Governor Jay Inslee took time to not only award Beckey a certificate declaring Beckey “Washingtonian of the Day,” but stayed to listen to Beckey’s lively narration of a multi-media presentation based on his book, 100 Favorite North American Climbs. Inslee said he could not stay away when he heard Beckey would be speaking in Olympia.“Washington State is a pretty special place – we’ve got Mt. Rainier, we’ve got Mt. Baker, the Space Needle, Boeing, and Fred Beckey….He opens people’s ambitions and vision about the heights of our State,” said Inslee.For his part, Beckey said that his program was more than just about his favorite climbs, “…but to show the pageantry of Western America and that these mountains are not just for recreation, but for wild resources and all our environmental needs….We need to protect them….”Beckey recently returned from the American Alpine Club’s (AAC) annual meeting in New York City, where he received the AAC’s President’s Gold Medal, in recognition of his outstanding achievements in conservation, climbing, and service to the climbing community. Beckey is only the fourth person in 113 years to receive this honor.“Fred Beckey is being recognized this year for a lifelong devotion to climbing and first ascents that is unmatched over generations. Fred has put climbing in front of virtually everything else in his life. We honor both his dedication to the craft and the thousands of routes he has left for us all to enjoy,” said AAC President Mark Kroese. Ever active, Beckey also attended a Seattle event with Reinhold Messner in Seattle last week.In Olympia, Steve Jones, a friend of Beckey’s, introduced Beckey by telling stories, and received laughs by saying Beckey invented the climber’s lifestyle before there was a climbing lifestyle.

Beckey did not disappoint as he told many stories during a slide show sprinkled with brief movie clips of his climbs.

Beckey tirelessly stayed until 10:00 p.m. to sign books and speak with admirers, including the coordinators of Evergreen’s Outdoor Program, which sponsored the event. The Outdoor Program (TOP) educates students in climbing basics, kayaking, backpacking and other outdoor activities. The Olympia Mountaineers, the Warehouse Rock Gym and Mountaineers Meetup groups were also instrumental in spreading word of the event as far as Seattle and Portland.Above: Fred Beckey, in red, chats with Washington State Governor Jay Inslee before giving a presentation on Wednesday night at The Evergreen State College. 

Halo Benders “Love Travels Faster”

K Records - Thu, 02/12/2015 - 12:09am
Someone knit that hat so there must be something back there…   K Song of the Day: Halo Benders “Love Faster Faster”, from  The Rebels not in [KLP081]. The Halo Benders album The Rebels not in [KLP081] is available now from the K Mail Order Dept.  
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

An Olympia Valentine’s Day off the Beaten Path

Thurston Talk - Wed, 02/11/2015 - 9:34pm



Photos by Laurie Wetherford, Pope John Paul II Intern to ThurstonTalk

Valentine’s Day can just be about chocolate and flowers, but it can also be so much more.  Think outside the box and visit someplace off the beaten path for a more unique Valentine’s Day experience.  Stroll through the park hand in hand, catch an independent film at Capitol Theater and actually talk about it afterward, grab hand-crafted appetizers with a view at Swing, or try the ultimate trust activity and belay for each other at Warehouse Rock Gym.  Whatever you choose to do this Valentine’s Day, don’t choose boring.  Take your romance to from the ordinary to the extra-ordinary in a town that offers plenty of options to love.


Laurie Valentines Day warehouse rock gym Laurie Valentines Day capitol theater Laurie Valentines Day Priest Point Park Laurie Valentines Day priest point park Laurie Valentines Day warehouse rock gym Laurie Valentines Day Capitol Theater Bench Laurie Valentines Day Capitol Theater Concessions Laurie Valentines Day Swing Laurie Valentines Day (15)

7th Annual Olympia Old Time Festival ~ Kickoff Event and More to Follow

OlyBlog Home Page - Wed, 02/11/2015 - 4:51pm
Event:  Thu, 02/12/2015 - 7:00pm - 9:00pm

7th Annual Olympia Old Time Festival starts Thursday and runs through Sunday, February 15, presented by The Arubuts Folk School. Concerts and dances in The Olympia Ballroom (the historic Hotel Olympian), 116 Legion Way S.E., downtown Oly. Most workshops are free and take place at First Christian Church, 7th Ave. at Franklin St. and the Arbutus Folk School, 610 Fourth Ave.

The Olympia Old-Time Music Festival is dedicated to teaching, learning and participating in the sharing of traditional American old-time fiddle music.

Thursday evening it's the all-ages square dance; music by the Grizzle Grazzle Tune Snugglers (Olympia); calling by Evie Ladin (recording artist, Oakland), $5; $30 weekend pass and other pricing for individual events, available at the door or on the web site.

See the event web site and facebook page for tix, dance and concert schedule, headlining artists and workshop schedule.

Festy Web Site     Festy Facebook     Arbutus Folk School

Photo courtesy Raincrow Productions

A quick look at the rest of the Festy

Friday, Feb. 13 The Olympia Ballroom and Urban Onion Lounge
7:00 p.m. The Oly Mountain Boys warm-up show, free, Urban Onion Lounge, downstairs
8:00 p.m. Main concert with The Foghorn Stringband (Portland), Evie Ladin and Keith Terry (Bay Area), Old Time Crankie Show by Sue Truman; $15 or weekend pass
10:00 p.m. Honky Tonk late-night dance with The Tall Boys (Seattle) until ? , $15 logo Twitter logo Google Plus One Facebook Like

read more

Portland author Alice Hardesty presents her new book, " An Uncommon Cancer Journey: The Cosmic Kick That Healed Our Lives"

OlyBlog Home Page - Wed, 02/11/2015 - 11:15am
Event:  Sat, 02/21/2015 - 3:00pm

Portland author Alice Hardesty will present her new book, " An Uncommon Cancer Journey: The Cosmic Kick That Healed Our Lives". The book tells the story of Hardesty's husband Jack's extraordinary healing from esophageal cancer in the 1980s, despite two "terminal" diagnoses. After conventional medicine failed to provide a cure, Jack tried every alternative and complementary treatment he could, including nutrition, acupressure and other kinds of bodywork, vitamins and enzymes, spiritual healing, and intensive psychotherapy. Alice accompanied and supported him throughout this journey, and found that, along with the physical healing, came the healing of their marriage.

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

Dub Narcotic Remix Contest Details Spring 2015

K Records - Wed, 02/11/2015 - 10:10am
We recently wrapped up the 2nd ever Dub Narcotic Studio video contest. In the end, Secondhand Sam took the crown with the video for “I use my mike for breaking wall“, and was justly rewarded with sweet sweet studio time. We can’t wait til the next video contest in the fall. In case you’re wondering, […]
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Saint Martin’s Athletics Hall of Fame/Hall of Honor Celebrates Its 25th Anniversary

Thurston Talk - Wed, 02/11/2015 - 9:40am



By Gail Wood

saint martins hall of fame

The 1966 Saint Martin’s men’s basketball team included Vince Strojan who was inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Friday, February 13 marks the 25th anniversary of the introduction of Saint Martin’s University’s annual Athletics Hall of Fame/Hall of Honor celebration.

The event is part of the Saint Martin’s Homecoming 2015 festivities scheduled throughout the weekend for alumni.

Inductees of the Hall of Fame/Hall of Honor are invited to a get-together on Friday that begins with a social hour at 6:00 p.m. at Marcus Pavilion. At 7:00 p.m., the celebration continues with four speakers reflecting on their experiences at Saint Martin’s.

The speakers – Vince Strojan ’68, George Parker ’71, Emily Shipman Thomas ’02 and Adolfo Capestany – are previous inductees into the University’s Hall of Fame/Hall of Honor. All inductees in attendance will receive a Saint Martin’s one-quarter jacket with the Hall of Fame/Hall of Honor logo. Family members of deceased inductees who attend the event will be recognized with certificates.

For Strojan, an NAIA All-American in the 1960s as a 6’3” guard, his induction into his school’s Hall of Fame has had a lasting impact.

“It’s always been kind of awkward for me to accept an individual award while playing a team sport,” Strojan said. “I think the one thing that makes it somewhat easier is that during my era, there were four or five others from my team who were inducted.”

saint martins hall of fame

Hall of Fame and Hall of Honor inductees are presented awards by Saint Martin’s University President Roy Heynderickx and Athletics Director Bob Grisham.

When Strojan arrived at Saint Martin’s, the school was all male and enrollment was approximately 500 students. After earning NAIA All-American honors his senior year, Strojan was drafted by the Dallas Chaparrals of the American Basketball Association.

In a tryout with the Seattle SuperSonics, Strojan made it to the last cut. It came down to Strojan and Al Hairston.

“I played in their rookie camp. I thought I had made it, but they kept another guy over me,” said Strojan, who recently retired after selling Evergreen Paper Company, which he owned for 30 years.

Strojan and his former teammates still frequently get together with Jerry Vermillion, their former coach who has been inducted into Saint Martin’s Hall of Fame and lives on Hood Canal.

“Jerry had a way of getting the best out of you,” Strojan said. “There’s a sense of accomplishment, especially when you’re around your peers that you played with on the team.”

Thomas, a 2002 Saint Martin’s grad, was the first Saint Martin’s athlete to win a conference title in track. She still holds the school record in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and has the third-fastest conference time in the 2,000-meter steeplechase. She also set school records in the 10K, 5K and 3K.

Parker was an NAIA all-district selection in men’s basketball. He finished with 1,182 points, which ranked seventh in career scoring at Saint Martin’s all-time. Parker, who was inducted into the Saints’ Hall of Fame in 1997, led his team in points and rebounds.

saint martins hall of fame

Adolfo Capestany, a previous inductee into Saint Martin’s Hall of Honor, plans to be part of the 25th anniversary events on Friday.

Capestany has been the PA announcer for home basketball games for the Saints’ men’s and women’s teams since 1985, earning him the title of being the “Voice of the Pavilion.” He has also volunteered as the school’s sports information director for a decade and has been involved in many fundraising events over the years.

Capestany, who was inducted into Saint Martin’s Hall of Honor in 2014, has a long-time connection with the University. His uncle and aunt taught at Saint Martin’s University. In the 1970s, he started attending Saints basketball games as a young boy. Being inducted has been a special honor.

“For me, especially as a non-alumni, it’s very humbling,” said Capestany, who attended Western Washington University. “I do it because it’s a labor of love. I enjoy doing it.”

Capestany’s announcing career began in the early 1970s when he covered junior varsity basketball games at Olympia High School as a student. When a need opened at Saint Martin’s, he volunteered and has stuck with it ever since. Over the years, Capestany said, he’s watched some special moments in Marcus Pavilion.

“It’s very touching and humbling that they thought enough of what I do, which I feel is very small, to give me this honor,” Capestany said.

To learn more about the Hall of Fame/Hall of Honor and 25th anniversary events, click here.

Native Plant Sales and Seed Exchanges: Affordable and Beneficial Options for Spring Planting

Thurston Talk - Wed, 02/11/2015 - 6:36am



By Melanie Kallas Ricklefs

washington orthopaedic centerSpring is fast approaching, and with it comes longer days, warmer temperatures, and the opportunity to create a garden oasis in your backyard. There are so many types of trees, shrubs, and flowering plants to choose from when designing your landscape, but not all have the same benefits. If you have plans for spring planting this year, you may want to consider incorporating native plants.

Jen Thurman-Williams, native plant sale coordinator for the Mason Conservation District (MCD), says that because native plants are adapted to our climate, they can survive without the use of fertilizers and pesticides. They are also able to thrive on their own without watering after the first two years. Some native plants have attractive flowers with inviting scents to enhance your landscape, and many benefit wildlife.

native plant sales

The Washington Native Plant Society provides a wide variety of potted plants at their spring sale with informational labels to help you find the right plants for your project. Photo courtesy Bill Brookreson.

Each year, our local conservation districts hold native plant sales. They provide the opportunity to order bare-root plants, shrubs, and trees through their websites from November through January. Bare-root plants are sold in bunches and are an affordable way to plant your landscape. They are also the best option for any restoration or conservation projects you may have in mind. Jen says that while the MCD sale is technically over, they will accept online orders while supplies last.

The MCD plant sale website includes site-specific recommendations to help you determine which plants would be best suited for your landscape. Recommendations include tree species, shrubs, flowering plants, and ground cover that would grow optimally given the environmental conditions. If you are looking to attract hummingbirds and butterflies, while also incorporating beautiful blossoms into your landscape, Jen recommends red flowering currant and mock orange. The MCD inventory not only includes plants that provide food for wildlife, it also includes edibles such as thimbleberry and salmonberry.

The Thurston Conservation District (TCD) is holding a native plant sale in their parking lot on March 7 from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. The TCD is located at 2918 Ferguson Street SW, Building 1 Suite A in Tumwater.   According to Stephanie Bishop, the South Sound GREEN Coordinator for TCD, the conservation district will be selling individual plant species as well as combinations of species that meet a common objective. They will offer a “Pollinator Package” which includes plants with long blooming periods that overlap with one another to provide a constant food source for pollinators. They will also offer a “Landscape Package” which includes drought resistant plants with showy flowers and pleasant aromas.

native plant sales

Thurston Conservation District employees are on hand to discuss and distribute native plants at their annual native plant sale. Photo courtesy Thurston Conservation District.

During the parking lot sale, TCD staff will be available to answer questions about the native plants available, and which species may be suitable for your landscape. The conservation district will also provide workshops throughout the day on topics including composting, mushroom log inoculation, plant selection and placement for water efficiency, prairie importance, pollination, and rain garden establishment. The Henderson Inlet Community Shellfish Farm and Taylor Shellfish Farms will be on site to provide shellfish and talk about keeping Puget Sound clean.

The Washington Native Plant Society (WNPS) offers a native plant sale each year at the Capital Museum Coach House in Olympia at 211 21st Avenue SW in Olympia. This year’s plant sale will take place on April 18, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. WNPS provides reasonably-priced potted plants that consist of primarily shrubs and herbaceous plants. Their stock differs from year to year, but they consistently offer native evergreen shrubs, ferns, and huckleberry bushes.

According to Bill Brookreson, Chair of the South Sound Chapter of the WNPS, the proceeds from their plant sales fund free public education programs offered by WNPS, and grants for community projects. WNPS has used previous plant sale funds to create brochures and plant labels for the Nisqually Reach Nature Center. They have also provided support to students in our community by funding educational field trips, and helping to establish native plant and prairie gardens at local schools as part of their science curriculum.

native plant sales

Shelves at the Olympia Seed Exchange are well-stocked and ready for spring. Photo courtesy Caitlin Moore.

If spring planting makes you think more of growing food than native plants, you may want to check out the Olympia Seed Exchange. All of the seeds at the Olympia Seed Exchange are free, but they encourage people to take only what they need, so that there will be enough for all who want to participate. The Olympia Seed Exchange is stocked by donations, so please donate seeds in exchange for those you take.

The Olympia Seed Exchange is currently housed on the second floor of the Eastside Urban Farm and Garden Center located at 2325 4th Avenue East in Olympia, and is open during store hours. The Olympia Seed Exchange also offers a seed saving certification program to educate people on proper seed saving techniques. More information about this program can be found at


Classic Decadence from Bayview and Ralph’s Thriftway for Your Valentine Sweetie

Thurston Talk - Wed, 02/11/2015 - 6:00am



By Kathryn Millhorn

valentines chocolate strawberries

The delicious sights and scents of fresh, flowing chocolate are hard to miss with these hand-crafted treats.

Brace yourselves; Valentine’s Day is rapidly approaching. If you’re more Jon Stewart (“I have complete faith in the continued absurdity of whatever’s going on.”) than Martha Stewart (“I think baking cookies is equal to Queen Victoria running an empire. There’s no difference in how seriously you take the job, how seriously you approach your whole life.”) you probably need a little help.

As usual, look to the skilled staff at Ralph’s and Bayview Thriftway to save the day. Produce Supervisor Nate Conat is one of a team of dedicated Thriftway employees set on making your romantic night one to remember.

Conat has worked for the Thriftway family for more than 15 years. He was employed locally for eight years before moving north to the Stadium location in Tacoma. After six years there, he was wooed back to Olympia where he has happily spent the last three years.

One of the ideas he brought with him on his return south was the in-house crafted chocolate dipped strawberry promotion for Valentine’s and Mother’s Day. He is proud to see them “fly off the shelves” and warns that they almost always sell out.

This year the event takes place on Friday, February 13 and Saturday, February 14. Conat says the treats are hard to miss because display tables and a flowing chocolate fountain are set up prominently in both locations. There, staffers dip and decorate fresh berries on the spot which “really makes the event since they’re that fresh.”

No special orders will be taken to insure the peak of freshness and berries are available on a first come, first served basis while supplies last. Hours for pick-up are from 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. on Friday and 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. on Saturday.

valentines chocolate strawberries

Produce Supervisor Nate Conat crafts berries which “fly off the shelves!”

Berries sell for $3.99 for 2, $6.99 for 4, or $12.99 for 10. Go for the big pack, it’s got to tide you over until Mother’s Day.

Need a great bottle of wine to seal the deal? Thriftway is an amazing source of variety, varietals, and the knowledgeable palate of Rob Backman, their Direct Store Delivery Manager by day and Beer, Wine, and Liquor Manager by night. He and the teams at either location are able to match the perfect wine or beer to your specific meal, dessert, and budget.

Last year’s ‘Best Grocery Store’ in the South Sound, the Thriftway family of stores is a one-stop shop for amazing food, community spirit, and a variety of events and classes for all ages. Want to make next year’s Valentine’s even more personal? Sign up for a hands-on class at the Bayview School of Cooking. Previous romantic offerings have included ‘Squeeze Me’ Lemon Raspberry Fizz, ‘Apple of my Eye’ soup, pomegranate-glazed salmon, and chocolate turtle cake.

Visit Bayview Thriftway at 516 West 4th or Ralph’s Thriftway at 1908 East 4th. You never know just what you’ll find when you do.

Mirah “Gold Rush”

K Records - Wed, 02/11/2015 - 12:36am
Cascading guitar and strings! Mirah does it again.  K Song of the Day: Mirah, “Gold Rush” from her Changing Light [KLP253] album.   The Mirah album Changing Light [KLP253] is available now from the K mail Order Dept.  
Categories: Arts & Entertainment


K Records - Tue, 02/10/2015 - 4:15pm
D.C’s Priests staged a full-fledged invasion of Olympia and the K office. Luckily, the band came bearing gifts: a large box of vegan donuts and 5 copies of their brand new 12″ E.P., Bodies and Control and Money and Power. See BACAMAP with Katie (vocals, also of Chain & The Gang fame) and Giddeon (guitar), […]
Categories: Arts & Entertainment

Give your Water Heater a Little Love this Valentine’s Day

Thurston Talk - Tue, 02/10/2015 - 3:06pm



Submitted by Springer Plumbing

Springer Plumbing reminds you to give your plumbing a little "love" this Valentine's Day.

Springer Plumbing reminds you to give your plumbing a little “love” this Valentine’s Day.

Why not give your plumbing a little love this Valentine’s Day? Your water heater is the hardest working appliance in your home, it constantly provides you and your family with warm water while asking little in return. We think it is time you returned the favor and gave your water heater some affection. A little love goes a long way!

The good news is taking care of your water heater is pretty simple. All water heaters accumulate sediment and lime deposits as they age, some of which is just a by-product of the water being heated. All these deposits of sand, rust, rocks, etc. can have a large impact on the efficiency and lifespan of your water heater. We recommend performing an annual flush to clear out the sediment. Having this quick job done will allow your water heater to produce more hot water with less energy. We would love to help you with this if you do not know how to do it yourself.

Why Should You Flush Your Water Heater?

-Remove all sediment that builds up (sand, salt, tiny rocks & even rust)

-Prolong the life of your water heater (average lifespan is 13 years)

-Increase the efficiency of your heater

-Save on energy costs

-Prevent corrosion of the tank

-Allow for your tank to hold its full water capacity

-Protect the drain valve from clogging

-Provide your family with cleaner water

-Have peace of mind knowing you are performing preventative maintenance

Our friendly plumbing technicians are water heater experts and can perform any maintenance, repairs or answer any questions you may have. Happy Valentine’s Day from the Springer Plumbing crew!

Springer Plumbing

3517 Sapp Road SW, Olympia WA 98512

Phone: (360) 754-9670 | Fax: (360) 754-1223



WDFW Approves Razor Clam Dig Starting February 15

Thurston Talk - Tue, 02/10/2015 - 2:35pm



Submitted by Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife 

Razor Clamming Moclips (3)Razor clam diggers can count on an eight-day opener beginning Feb. 15 and start planning trips to Washington’s beaches in March, state shellfish managers said today. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) approved the upcoming dig, which runs Feb. 15-22, after marine toxin tests showed the clams are safe to eat.

Dan Ayres, WDFW coastal shellfish manager, said the best digging typically occurs one to two hours before low tide. No digging is allowed at any beach before noon.“We’re expecting a good turnout this upcoming Presidents’ Day weekend,” Ayres said. “Tides will be early enough the first few days that diggers can enjoy some daylight on the beach.”

Under state law, diggers are required to keep the first 15 clams they dig. Each digger’s clams must be kept in a separate container.

  • Feb. 15, Sunday, 3:47 p.m.; 0.2 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • Feb. 16, Monday, 4:37 p.m.; -0.5 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • Feb. 17, Tuesday, 5:24 p.m.; -0.9 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • Feb. 18, Wednesday, 6:08 p.m.; -1.1 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • Feb. 19, Thursday, 6:51 p.m.; -1.1 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • Feb. 20, Friday, 7:33 p.m.; -0.7 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks
  • Feb. 21, Saturday, 8:16 p.m.; -0.1 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks, Copalis
  • Feb. 22, Sunday, 9:00 p.m.; 0.6 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Mocrocks

Shellfish managers also announced a new schedule of proposed digs through March, which includes an opening tentatively set for March 5. “We’re announcing these dates so people can make plans for digging in March,” Ayres said. “The proposed digs include an opening for the Ocean Shores razor clam festival.”

Below is the list of proposed razor clam digs, along with low tides and beaches:

  • March 2, Monday, 4:46 p.m.; 0.5 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 3, Tuesday, 5:26 p.m.; 0.4 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 4, Wednesday, 5:59 p.m.; 0.4 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 5, Thursday; 6:30 p.m., 0.5 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 16, Monday, 4:15 p.m.; 0.3 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 17, Tuesday, 5:08 p.m.; -0.2 feet; Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 18, Wednesday, 5:57 p.m.; -0.5 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 19, Thursday; 6:42 p.m., -0.5 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 20, Friday, 7:26 p.m.; -0.4 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors, Copalis, Mocrocks

Seasonal switch to morning tides

  • March 21, Saturday, 7:55 a.m.; -0.5 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors Copalis, Mocrocks
  • March 22, Sunday, 8:42 a.m.; -0.7 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors Copalis, Mocrocks
  • March 23, Thursday, 9:31 a.m.; -0.6 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors
  • March 24, Thursday, 10:21 a.m.; -0.3 feet, Long Beach, Twin Harbors

All diggers age 15 or older must have an applicable 2015-16 fishing license to harvest razor clams on any beach. Licenses, ranging from a three-day razor clam license to an annual combination fishing license, are available on WDFW’s website at and from license vendors around the state.

WDFW has razor clam recipes as well as advice on digging and cleaning clams on its webpage at

Syndicate content