Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

December 29, 2011 at 3:29pm

WEEKEND HUSTLE: POSSCA New Year's Eve Masquerade Benefit, First Night, Perry Acker, Polar Bear Plunge, Plus the Boring Lives of Some of the Volcano's Staff ...

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THE LOWDOWN ON WHAT'S UP THIS WEEKEND >>>

WEATHER REPORT

Friday: Rain, hi 46, lo 34

Saturday: Chance of sun, hi 41, lo 36

Sunday: Cloudy, hi 46, lo 41

>>> FRIDAY, DEC. 30:JAMES HILBORNE & THE PAINKILLERS

The music of James Hilborne and the Painkillers would be odd in any number of places, but, in Tacoma, it's more or less an anomaly. Ostensibly, the Painkillers play Americana: streaks of country twang and blues rock run through the band's songs, but these elements are accompanied by errant spells of psychedelia and druggy macabre. On record, the Painkillers' music is tremulous and strange, smothered as it is in the kind of haze that one might think would envelop country rock was born under Tacoma's unforgiving gloomy skies. James Hilborne and the Painkillers are the perfect band to send you drifting dreamily along into New Year's Eve, and from there the uncertain future.

  • The New Frontier Lounge, with Humble Cub, special guests, 9 p.m., cover TBA, 301 E. 25th St., Tacoma, 253.572.4020

>>> SATURDAY, DEC. 31: THE BROHO'S NEW YEAR'S EVE PARTY

The Brotherhood Lounge in Olympia tops the dichotomy list. At the heart of this red-walled haven of booze, dancing and debauchery are community and solidarity. You see, while you kiss the closest beautiful face at midnight - colorful balloons dropping all around and your head dizzy with drinks - you can take solace in the fact that if you were to drop dead at this point, at least you know half of your door money is going to Safeplace, a local non-profit that supports victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. DJ Dead-Air, from Portland, will be spinning all night, and has been said to induce spiritual journeys through his picks of ‘80s, rawk, punk, disco and more. Awesome.

  • The Brotherhood Lounge, 119 Capitol Way N., Olympia, 360.352.4153

>>> SATURDAY, DEC.31: FIRST NIGHT TACOMA

First Night Tacoma - an annual, all-ages, family-friendly, alcohol-free New Year's Eve celebration - follows the Chinese lunar calendar, and this year is the year of the dragon.  In this spirit there will be two large dragons making an appearance at the festival - a 35-foot creation by Metro Parks Tacoma, and a 14-foot fire-breathing metal beast. "We're really stepping up the fire aspect to mitigate the cold," says co-event director Lance Kagey. First Night buttons - available at many businesses in the Stadium and Theater Districts - will get you into all of the stages and events for the evening (not to mention free admission to Tacoma's museums during the day). At 6:30 p.m. First Night Tacoma officially kicks off in the Theater District with a parade. Throughout the evening, attendees can enjoy music on 12 stages. Bands and performers will include regional acts such as Roman Holiday, Rumbeggae and Vamola.

  • Downtown Tacoma- Theater District, 6:30 p.m.-Midnight, Buttons $10 before Saturday, Dec. 31, $14 day of, Kids 10 and younger free, firstnighttacoma.org

>>> SATURDAY, DEC. 31: POSSCA NEW YEAR'S EVE MASQUERADE BENEFIT

Billed as, "a high-octane shake-your-booty event," Saturday's Patrons of South Sound Cultural Arts New Year's Eve Masquerade benefit is sure to be an awesome way to bring in 2012, promising 2011's Best of Olympia "Best Band" The Brown Edition, in addition to party favors, hors d' oeuvres and enough funk to make your trunk jump. Best of all: It's all ages. Even better: There's a beer garden for those over 21. You can't go wrong.

  • The Eagles Grand Ballroom, 805 Fourth Ave., Olympia, possca.org

>>> SATURDAY, DEC.31: NEW YEAR'S EVE WITH ROCK-BOT AND BURGERS

Chances are you'll celebrate New Year's Eve one way or another. Either you have magnificent plans, or maybe you don't. But when the time comes you'll be looking for something ... anything ... to do on the big night. Sitting at home in your depressing apartment on New Year's Eve is the very definition of sad and lonely. This being the case, consider Varsity Grill's New Year's Eve celebration, offering an all-ages chance to karaoke your ass off with the live "Rock-Bot" backing band, not to mention bring in the New Year in style. Oh, and did we mention Varsity Grill is giving away a very meaty prize - a burger a day for all of 2012? Only a silly vegan could pass up such an awesome opportunity.

  • The Varsity Grill, 1114 Broadway, Tacoma, 253.627.1229

>>> SATURDAY, DEC. 31: NEW YEAR'S EVE WITH PERRY ACKER

Local band Perry Acker has had a big year. They took home top honors at the Ford-sponsored "Give Me The Gig" national battle of the bands contest, they releaed a new record, Path To Freedom, and on Saturday they'll bring in the New Year with a much-anticipated show at Jazzbones. Ben Union is also on the bill, as is an unplugged performance from local favorites Doxology. 

  • Jazzbones, 9 p.m., $15-$30, 2803 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.396.9169

>>> SUNDAY,JAN. 1: POLAR BEAR PLUNGE

Here at the Weekly Volcano we take our showers warm. We're kind of wimps. But there are plenty of tough, adventurous, rosy-cheeked folks out there who live on the edge, no doubt partaking in activities like Sunday's Polar Bear Plunge at Point Defiance Marina. According to hype, Sunday's New Year's Day cold-water fiasco presents a chance to get 2012 off on the right foot. As the press release says, "The New Year offers opportunities to set new goals and try new things, so get your bucket list out and come take the Plunge with other jubilant merrymakers at the Point Defiance Marina." The all-ages Polar Bear plunge will go down rain or shine, starting at 11:30 a.m.

  • Point Defiance Marina, Polar Bear Plunge, Sunday, Jan. 1, 11:30 a.m., free, 5912 N. Waterfront Dr., Point Defiance Park, Tacoma, 253.591.5325

>>> WHAT SOME OF OUR STAFF MEMBERS ARE UP TO

STEVE DUNKELBERGER Meat Market Photographer
Watching season three of Sons of Anarchy that I missed, so it is sort of like watching Resevior  Dogs since all the episodes now seem like flash backs.

CHRISTIAN CARVAJAL Theater Critic
It's New Year's Eve, my favorite holiday of the year! We'll be at Swing Wine Bar to catch the musical stylings of Skuff and Al. Then, if other celebrants ask us to make out with them, well...let's just say we haven't resolved not to do that.

JENNIFER JOHNSON Food & Lifestyles Writer
Making 30 batches of cookies with family in Utah. Recipe swap with six aunties. Gathering on New Year's Day with five generations of family to honor our matriarch.

JOANN VARNELL Theater Critic
For the last two weeks I've worked REALLY hard to build up my ability to stay up past 10 pm (aka watching Mad Men season 1 and 2). On New Year's Eve I will put my training to the test at First Night where I will watch the fire breathing dragon, and Drew Grow and the Pastors Wives while trying to keep my toddler asleep. Sunday I will nap when my son does. First, though, I will clean my house for the last time this year!

ALEC CLAYTON Visual Arts Critic/Writer
Water volleyball with the over the hill gang and the SAGE Olympia brunch at the Urban Onion Sunday.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

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