Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: December, 2011 (129) Currently Viewing: 21 - 30 of 129

December 6, 2011 at 6:19am

True Tacoman: Score free food by knowing your Babe Ruth trivia


Foodcaching is a new smart phone app alerting customers of awesome food deals at 16 restaurants in the greater Tacoma area. You may download the app for free on your iPhone and Android here.

The Weekly Volcano has teamed up with Foodcaching for the True Tacoman game. Every Tuesday and Friday right here on Spew, we post a Tacoma history trivia provided by the Washington State History Museum. If you know the answer, run to one of the 16 participating restaurants, come clean with answer and you'll receive points on your Foodcaching app, which you downloaded free here. We'll be running the True Tacoman trivia game through the end of the year.

The person will the most points on Dec. 31 will be crowned the True Tacoman and be flooded with various food prizes.

Friday's True Tacoman trivia answer

Friday we asked if you knew the tie between William F. Tolmie and Edward Huggins, who were Hudson's Bay Company officials during the early days of American settlement on Puget Sound. You spent the last four days telling the restaurants listed below that they were brothers-in-law and, thereby, scoring points on the Foodcaching app. It was an easy task – a lot easier than dealing with your own brother-in-law.

Today is Tuesday, which means we post another trivia question as part of the True Tacoman contest.

Today's True Tacoman trivia question

Babe Ruth came to Tacoma in October 1924 to play exhibition baseball. The other major event that occurred during his stay was:

  • A) the Tacoma Hotel burned to the ground;
  • B) the airship Shenandoah made a visit to Camp Lewis;
  • C) the train that followed ruth's train from Spokane was caught in a freak snowstorm and many passengers died.

Answer the question correctly at one of the 16 participating restaurants below and score points - besides scoring awesome food deals from the restaurants. The correct answer will be revealed Friday, Dec. 9 on Spew. Also keep an eye on this blog for bonus game points and a special invite to the True Tacoman Game Party in early 2012.

Oh, you can download the free app here.

Participating restaurants

  • 1022 South, 1022 South J St., Tacoma, 253.627.8588, Facebook
  • Capers Cafe & Take Home, 2602 N. Proctor St., Tacoma, 253.761.4444, Facebook
  • Dirty Oscar's Annex, 2309 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.572.0588, Facebook
  • Dorky's Arcade, 754 Pacfic Ave., Tacoma, 253.627.4156, Facebook
  • Harmon Brewery & Eatery, 1938 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, 253.383.2739, Facebook
  • Harmon Tap Room, 204 Saint Helens Ave., Tacoma, 253.212.2725, Facebook
  • The Hub, 203 Tacoma Ave. S., Tacoma, 253.683.4606, Facebook
  • Jake's Bar & Bistro, 215 Wilkes St., Steilacoom, 253.581.3300, Website
  • Massimo Italian Bar & Grill, 4020 Bridgeport Way W., University Place, 253.503.1902, Facebook
  • Marrow Kitchen & Bar, 2717 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.267.5299, Facebook
  • Over The Moon Cafe, 709 Court C/Opera Alley, Tacoma, 253.284.3722, Facebook
  • Pacific Grill, 1502 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, 253.627.3535, Facebook
  • The Social Bar & Grill, 1715 Dock St., Tacoma, 253.301.3835, Facebook
  • STINK Cheese & Meat, 628 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma, 253.426.1347, Facebook
  • Top of Tacoma Bar & Cafe, 3529 McKinley Ave., Tacoma, 253.272.1502, Facebook
  • TWOKOI Japanese Restaurant, 1552 Commerce St., Tacoma, 253.274.8999, Facebook

December 6, 2011 at 6:20am

5 Things To Do Today: "Polar Express," Banff Film Fest, parking chat, Mikal Cronin and more ...

Believe in Tuesday.

TUESDAY, DEC. 6, 2011 >>>

1. The theme of Robert Zemeckis's The Polar Express, like that of this year's NBA season, is "Believe," though you might not believe the groundbreaking animation that hits you like childhood wonderment on Xmas morning. Zemeckis engaged a team of 500 special effect specialists to blend live-action renderings and snowy, CGI backdrops that look like something out of the Pixar factory. Based on Chris Van Allsburg's best-selling book, what unfolds is an adventure that follows a doubting young boy, who takes an extraordinary train ride to the North Pole; during this ride, he embarks on a journey of self-discovery that shows him that the wonder of life never fades for those who believe. Today as part of its Tuesday Film Series, The Grand Cinema will screen the awesome film at 2:05 and 6:30 p.m.

2. A group of Tacoma City Council members, ecologists, the public, business leaders, asphalt pourers, UW Tacoma officials, parking stall line painters, bloggers and other folks who have made parking their life blood will gather at 2:30 p.m. inside the William Philip Hall on the UW Tacoma campus to talk about parking issues in downtown Tacoma. At this drop-in public session participants will work with large interactive maps to identify parking challenges and opportunities in the areas around the UWT campus and in the Dome District. Several participants will return to parking tickets on their vehicles.

3. Adventure. For some, it is an irrepressible welling in the chest that will never go away no matter how many lakes canoed, rock faces climbed, horizons paddled after, peaks scaled, or miles of trail hiked. For others, adventure is something to marvel at - a celebration of man's achievements. Most folks tend to admire the adventurers of the world, whether they are adventurers of the mind, the spirit or of the physical world. The touring Banff Mountain Film Festival lands in Tacoma at the Rialto Theater at 7 p.m. Climbing, biking, skiing, snowboarding - it's all up on the big screen, looming high and making you feel bad for sitting on your duff almost all year long.

4. Between 8 and 9 p.m. the community will Skansie Brothers Park in Gig Harbor and sing to the more fortunate. That's right holiday lovers, the Argosy Christmas Ship - full of folks jingling their jewelry and tossing back fancy cocktails - will drift by the park while you shiver in the cold, singing carols with the St. Martins University Chorale to the partiers. It's a beautiful thing.\

5, Hey kids! Do you like the rock and roll? Mikal Cronin, The Bermudas and Si Si Si will rock The New Frontier Lounge beginning at 9 p.m. Rev. Adam McKinney has the details here.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

LINK: This week's freebies

December 6, 2011 at 7:41am

MORNING SPEW: Layoffs, slot machines, music videos of the year ...

Hello? Hello!?


City of Tacoma Budget Woes: Department heads notified 166 city workers yesterday that their jobs are officially at risk. (News Tribune)

Republicans Answer To The $2 Billion State Budget Shortfall: cherry-cherry-cherry (News Tribune)

Afghanistan Blast: A suicide bomber killed 54 people at a Shiite shrine in Kabul. (CNN)

Cain Train: Accuser says candidate's exit "bittersweet." (CNN)

Another Year-End List: Best music videos of 2011 (Paste Magazine)

The Best Architecture Of 2011: Jonathan Glancey's choice. (The Guardian)

Today's Helpful Tip: when getting a lap dance, don't sit in a plastic chair. (Dumb As A Blog)

Discovery: Beer can actually save lives. (The Daily What)

Wood Ear: Wooden smartphone with app blocks (Super Punch)

Cat Ruffian

December 6, 2011 at 10:49am

Sharon Styer wins local photography contest

Sharon Styer's winning photograph of Tacoma's Ruston Way


This fall The Tacoma Regional Convention + Visitor Bureau, otherwise known as the catchy TRCVB, held a photography contest seeking the most awesome photo of Tacoma and Pierce County.

The judges have made their decision.

Congratulations to Sharon Styler for her shot of Ruston Way (see above).

For more details on the contest, read the TRCVB press release after the jump:


December 6, 2011 at 11:00am

MOVIE BIZ BUZZ: Lost "Weekend"

A scene for Pete Anderson's film "Break."


This year I've decided to watch safely from the sidelines as the gift-giving game heats up. Everyone seems to want a piece of the action - while Aunt Darlene knits the pinky on your new pair of gloves, filmmakers like Pete Anderson check twice their own handmade works of art before shipping out copies to festivals everywhere.

And in return, Anderson has just one item on his wish list: an acceptance letter.

With Anderson's feature ensemble Break completed this past fall, he has his fingers crossed on getting the thumbs up from two major fests in 2012, Cinequest in Silicon Valley and the Seattle International Film Festival. The former possesses some nostalgic value, as Anderson grew up in San Jose. And Break bursts with enough local spots to hopefully please the folks at SIFF.

"It's kind of (the film's) hometown," Anderson says. "We made a lot of the movie right around where the film would be screening ...(near) Seattle Center."

When he and I last spoke in September, Anderson was just rolling into production on a new feature called We Have the Weekend. For several weeks the project soared: "We had half the movie shot. Awesome locations, awesome footage," Anderson recalls.

Then difficulties with a main actor surfaced, and he had no other option but to shelve Weekend. On a hard drive it remains, Anderson's efforts never to see the light of day. But don't feel too bad; he for one refuses to cry over spilt movies.

"You have to look at the alternative: Am I going to waste more energy on it?" he asks.

If only we could all move on from our passion projects with the same resolve. (The tree can't take any more ornaments, Dad! Just walk away!)

While he waits on word from the festivals regarding Break, Anderson forges ahead with pre-production for the aptly-named The Wait. This Rashomon-type tale (which Anderson wrote) deals with a dead woman as seen from three very different perspectives: the parents, brother and boyfriend she left behind. Shooting begins in February. Like the Break Facebook page here.

LINK: We wrote about Anderson's film Break

Filed under: Arts, Screens,

December 6, 2011 at 4:29pm

BLOGGING: Tacoma's Lynn Di Nino hits Miami Beach

The Art Miami Venue during Vernissage / Photo credit: Lynn Di Nino


EDITOR'S NOTE: Tacoma's own Lynn Di Nino is in Miami, Florida for the annual Art Basel Miami Beach art trade show. She was kind enough to agree to blog about it for the Weekly Volcano.

Next year set yourself on fire by buying a $40 ticket to Art Basel Miami Beach (ABMB), the world-class fine art trade show. Whether you're an artist, a student or an art patron - you will be intoxicated with exposure to the high level of quality and variety of work from all over the world. Much of the work this year was inventive, outrageous, clever and thought provoking. The 10th annual mega event drew an additional 21 satellite art fairs - in warehouses, hotels and public spaces all around Miami and South Beach. This year there were more than 50,000 fair attendees, breaking last year's record.

Art Basel Miami Beach scene

If you go to the Vernissage, the invitation-only party preview, you will see a lot of rich-looking clean and very well dressed couples - most definitely the art patrons, the life blood of these heady exhibitions.

Because it's warm, you might see men wearing white leather shoes with no socks.

In addition to flamboyant fashions, and trays of special appetizers with free cocktails, you will experience miles of paintings, fine line drawings, sculpture, and photographs. The sculpture will be cast and fabricated resin, bronze imitating cardboard, Carrera marble imitating a Styrofoam carving of Mona Lisa, and an abundance of highly labor-intensive, expertly crafted wall pieces made with X-Acto knife paper cut-outs, knotted very fine plastic line, and hand-sewn sequins covering surfaces larger than your couch. You will see sexually explicit work, political pieces showing banks burning, and glorifications of everyday objects.

A memorable piece in the labor-intensive category was a full-scale gramophone on a grid of hanging buttons like a 3-D pointillistic sculpture in space. This piece sold. Another work used light blue wire mesh panels that were sewn into the transparent shapes of a bathroom sink, a faucet and an electrical panel. Each was framed in Plexiglas.

Every early December Miami Beach hosts Art Basel Miami Beach (originating in Basel, Switzerland), "the most prestigious art show in the Americas. More than 260 leading galleries from North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia and Africa take part, showcasing works by more than 2,000 artists of the 20th and 21st centuries." This is just ABMB - when you multiply the other 21 venues by the number of galleries represented within each, and the number of artworks they present, that totals approximately 5000 artworks. Looking at these quantities of curated work hones the art appreciation skills.

The shows

AQUA, a charming small scale art deco hotel, serving as a satellite venue, held a very pleasant surprise: Tacoma's own Nicholas Nyland was showing his artworks with the well-established Seattle cooperative gallery, SOIL. The spirit here was bustling yet relaxed with live music and free drinks in the courtyard. Except for AQUA's focus on West Coast galleries, there seemed generally to be no venue concentrations of art styles, locales or price ranges.

The galleries exhibiting in the biggest show pay $30,000 for 540 square feet for five days, and at PULSE - a less formal yet popular venue - the price was $20,000 for their 28-hour event. Modigliani, a framed Banksy, Henry Moore, Picasso, Chuck Close, Warhol, Lichtenstein and Keith Haring originals were for sale. A Henry Darger watercolor was for sale at $145,000, and a Diane Arbus photograph for $36,000. A Joseph Cornell piece sold during this show for $580,000, and there were many red dots.

New York gallerist Lucy Mitchell-Innes, director of Mitchell-Innes & Nash, attributed strong results to emerging collectors. "We saw a whole new generation of thirty-something collectors, seriously interested in looking and learning - and now buying as well, with many more women collectors making their own independent collecting decisions,'' Mitchell-Innes said via in a release. Even in a recession the people with money have to find safe places to put it, and right now Wall Street is not considered as safe as investments in high-end art.

The one

Out of some 5000 artworks I personally viewed, many stood out, but one in particular was compelling to me. Investigate for yourself the artists Glaser/Kunz and the gallery that represents them here. These sculptures have video-projected faces that are animated very realistically (also eerily) and they speak a poetry formulated from interviews with homeless people. To learn more about their work, click here.

The piece sells for $121,000.

How do we rate?

Is there good work like this here in the South Sound? You bet there is. Tacoma is a parallel universe to Miami in that their art patrons buy elsewhere - outside their own city (unless Art Basel is in town). World-class museums like the ones we have, and schools of higher learning contribute to the nurturing of a local art patron culture.

We've the quality art, now we need our patrons.

LINK: Lynn Di Nino's Art Basel Miami Beach Slideshow

Filed under: Arts, Tacoma, Travel,

December 7, 2011 at 12:06am

5 Things To Do Today: Rock and Roll Bingo, "A Midsummer Night's Dream," Knowledge Night, reggae ...


WEDNESDAY DEC. 7, 2011 >>>

1. Play bingo with those not just killing time before the Grim Reaper calls their number. Every Wednesday at The New Frontier Lounge, players are treated to a rather boisterous evening of number-calling. The music rocks, the prizes are craptastic and there's something very satisfying about yelling "It's not a tumor!" when B-9 is pulled from the hopper (Schwarzenegger anyone?). Sessions are free with $2 margaritas and $4 Cuervo Gold shots during bingo. Every Wednesday night is also Taco Night with $1 beef, $1 black bean and $2 chicken in soft or crunchy shells.

2. When it comes to coverage of climate change, energy, and environmental issues, the meltdown in mainstream news reporting couldn't come at a worse time. That shrinking category of news is as critical as ever. But the ranks of reporters best equipped to cover these major environmental and climate change stories at most news outlets, particularly in local markets, are being decimated. Ellen Moore, lecturer for Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences at UW Tacoma, will discuss how mainstream media cover environmental issues at 12:30 p.m. in Room 117 of the Joy Building on the University of Washington Tacoma campus.

3. A Midsummer Night's Dream is filled with more plot twists, love triangles and relationship misadventures than your average Hollywood chick flick. Some might even say that it's like an episode of Jerry Springer filmed on location in an enchanted Athenian forest. Under the lead of student director Jordan Beck, 12 Pacific Lutheran University students will stage the Shakespeare classic - with contemporary costuming and an expressionistic, whimsical set - at 7:30 p.m. on the Eastvold Mainstage.

4. Doyle's Public House will add a little holiday spirit to its 8 p.m. Wednesday Knowledge Night contest. The Stadium District watering hole will be collecting canned food and toys during the game. In return for your generous donation you'll receive a free appetizer and a chance to win bonus points and prizes.

5. Hawaiian reggae band Island Bound will perform at 8 p.m. inside Jazzbones.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

LINK: Happy hours

December 7, 2011 at 7:51am

MORNING SPEW: Tacoma budget cuts chopping block, student walkout, steampunk ruined ...



Tacoma Budget Cut Victims: Interim City Manager Rey Arellano cut two fire stations, four neighborhood engine companies, the gang unit, the school resources officers program, most community liaison cops, building inspectors, municipal court clerks, office assistants, accountants and others. (News Tribune)

State Budget Cut Vicitms: Nearly a third of Washington's year-round state parks staffers are being notified this week that they likely will be laid off. (News Tribune)

What You Might Want After The First Two News Items: Pine Street Landing Restaurant's happy hour is one right now. (Weekly Volcano)

Stadium Tully's Was Busy: Nearly 100 Stadium High School students walked off campus Tuesday to protest state cuts to education. (News Tribune)

Putin On The Fritz: Mikhail Gorbachev, the last Soviet leader, today called for new parliamentary elections over concerns about vote fraud. (CNN)

The End Of Steampunk: Thanks a lot Justin Bieber. (Gawker)

Who Knew?: Austrian-born movie actress Hedy Lamarr invented a device that would eventually lead to the development of GPS, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technology. (Techland)

Scott Baio And Pamela Anderson ...: 25 celebrity couples you never knew existed. (Buzz Feed)

Enough Is Enough: Let's get to work.

December 7, 2011 at 10:29am

Can you "hook up" at The Grand Cinema?

House of love?


It's been part of the dating dogma for many a year that the perfect place to meet someone is in a non-threatening, low-pressure environment. The usual examples are grocery stores (weird) and museums (weirder).

Why not get to know new people in a place that's both fun and rewarding, like The Grand Cinema in downtown Tacoma?

Alright, I may be laying the theater's match-making ability on a little thick, but only by a little bit. In my time as a volunteer (and, later, as a projectionist), not only did I see a number of friendships and romances form in the lobby, but I eventually met the people who would later introduce me to everyone I would become friends with in Tacoma. I understand that - if you're new to Tacoma, or any city - it can be hard to make friends. While I was born and raised in Tacoma, in 2004 I knew hardly anyone. On a whim, I began volunteering at The Grand Cinema, and it turned into one of the richest and most enjoyable periods in my life.

Here's how it works: Volunteer shifts range from two to four hours. For each shift you work, you receive a free pass to come see a movie. Tasks include making popcorn, serving concessions, running cash registers, taking tickets and cleaning up the theaters after movies finish. Typically, rushes last about an hour; you have the rest of your shift to hang out and talk with your fellow volunteers. If you ever want to get away, you can duck into one of the movies for a little bit, but it's fun to get to know the people you work with.

Now, I know calling The Grand an "arthouse" may conjure up images in your mind of snooty people with upturned noses, but the volunteers that make the Grand Cinema tick run the gamut, from high school students to senior citizens, liberal to conservative, serious to silly, and everything in between. Their unifying quality is the desire to keep a worthy entity like The Grand Cinema up and running, and to have fun in an environment that encourages creativity.

It's a happy coincidence that the Grand Cinema consistently plays the best movies in town. Perhaps you can take advantage of the free passes you receive as a volunteer and take a new friend out for dinner and a movie.

[The Grand Cinema, 606 Fawcett Ave., Tacoma, 253.593.4474]

Filed under: Screens, Volunteer, Tacoma,

December 7, 2011 at 12:57pm


Dockside Donuts: A colorful place to eat pastries. Photo credit: Steph Derosa


Open: 24 hours
With: A drive-thru
Located next to: Red's Valley Pub
Which is next week's: Three Drink Minimum
Can you believe: I'm back off the wagon?
That was: A dumb question, I know
My point is: There's a donut place
Located next to: A BAR!
My two fantasy worlds: Have finally collided
My overall sin: Gluttony

Let me first get out of the way the fact that, yes, Dockside Donuts is located in the shitiest part of Tacoma. This is not my opinion. This is a fact. I detest this fact.

In some other random diatribe, in some parallel universe where people actually give a crap about my opinion, I will passionately state my strong belief that the Tacoma Dome area is a history rich, extremely underutilized Mecca of business potential. I humbly honor those who have stood ground and set up shop around the Tacoma Dome. I shall patronize your businesses regardless, with hopes that Tacoma will follow.

Upon my first visit to Dockside Donuts, my point was proven when a man approached asking for money before I could even shut my car door. "I don't have any cash, but I'll buy you some donuts," Mr. DeRosa told the traveler. The unknown stranger declined this pastry offering.

To read Steph DeRosa's full review of Dockside Donuts, click here.

Filed under: Food & Drink, Tacoma,

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