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March 9, 2012 at 9:20am

5 Things To Do Today: South Sound Tech Conference, Weekly Volcano Street Team Pub Crawl, Amocat Live and more ...

Angry Birds will not be discussed at this year's South Sound Tech Conference.

FRIDAY, MARCH 9, 2012 >>>

1. The Weekly Volcano has a Street Team of 20-somethings who attend events in the South Sound, takes photos, blogs and distributes flyers and posters for future events. They also host events, such at the Street Team Pub Crawl. How do you get in on the first Street Team Pub Crawl? Show up at Charlie's Sports Bar & Grill in Olympia at 6 p.m. tonight. If you miss the mark, you can join up with the Volcano Street Team along the route. A free door prize raffle will be held at each location so don't dilly-dally. Here's the schedule.

2. Today brings the South Sound Technology Conference to the University of Washington Tacoma, a one-day event designed to bring together, "leaders from industry, education and government to discuss and demonstrate innovations and their applications," according to pre-event hype. The day-long event features a morning keynote by VP Product Development Expedia Steve Jarvis, a panel discussion on the mobile app development "explosion," and a lunch keynote by White House Cybersecurity Coordinator Howard Schmidt. Find more info about the South Sound Technology Conference and more in the Volcano's Weekend Hustle.

3. Time flies when you're having fun. Or so the saying goes - and fun is definitely one of the many great, hyper-local bits of awesomeness being served every day at Tacoma's Amocat Café, celebrating one year this Friday with the aptly titled, "Amocat Live." Expect an evening full of live music for all ages including John Dolge, Jon Parker, Micaela Cooley, Sam Bogle, Russ Dahler, Gen Obata, and The Collaborators. Best of all, it's free. It good times start at 7 p.m.

4. Comedian Slade Ham performs twice at the Tacoma Comedy Club tonight, taking the stage at 8 and 10:30 p.m. Meanwhile, the Comedy Underground Presents at Tacoma's Big Whisky Saloon presents Kortney Shane Williams and Joe Fontenot will keep things funny at Grit City Comedy Club.

5.In Olympia at Traditions Café and World Folk Art,  drop in on what's sure to be an enchanting event for all ages, "The Heartsparkle Players Present Stories From Outside Your Comfort Zone." It starts at 7:30 p.m.

MORE THINGS TO DO: The Weekend Hustle

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

LINK: Live music tonight

March 8, 2012 at 10:44am

WEEKEND HUSTLE: Amocat Live, South Sound Tech Conference, Leo Kottke, Hip-Hop 4 the Homeless, Harmony Sweepstakes, The Bad Plus, Poetry Out Loud State Finals, Olympia Symphony Orchestra and more ...

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

WEATHER REPORT

Friday: Rain showers, hi 48, lo 39

Saturday: More showers, hi 45, lo 39

Sunday: Chance of even more showers, hi 43, lo 36

>>> FRIDAY, MARCH 9: AMOCAT LIVE

Time flies when you're having fun. Or so the saying goes - and fun is definitely one of the many great, hyper-local bits of awesomeness being served every day at Tacoma's Amocat Café, celebrating one year this Friday with the aptly titled, "Amocat Live." Expect an evening full of live music for all ages including John Dolge, Jon Parker, Micaela Cooley, Sam Bogle, Russ Dahler, Gen Obata, and The Collaborators. Best of all, it's free. Plus, the ambiance at Amocat can't be beat. This event is a win for all involved. Stop bye and thank proprietor Morgan Alexander for a year of service to his community.

  • Amocat Live, 7 p.m., NC, 625 Saint Helens Ave., Tacoma, 253.242.3370

>>> FRIDAY, MARCH 9: SOUTH SOUND TECH CONFERENCE

Technology is a pretty freakin' big deal these days. Seems like the legions of tech geeks are ever growing, with a new techie born every time the wind blows or someone purchases a new iPhone. Friday brings the South Sound Technology Conference to the University of Washington Tacoma, a one-day event designed to bring together, "leaders from industry, education and government to discuss and demonstrate innovations and their applications," according to pre-event hype. The day-long event features a morning keynote by VP Product Development Expedia Steve Jarvis, a panel discussion on the mobile app development "explosion," and a lunch keynote by White House Cybersecurity Coordinator Howard Schmidt.

  • UWT - William W. Philip Hall, 8 a.m. - 4 p.m., $20, registration required, 1551 Broadway, Tacoma, sstconference.org

>>> FRIDAY, MARCH 9: LEO KOTTKE

There are few, if any, guitarists like Leo Kottke. An acoustic fret master, tickling both the six and 12 string varieties, Kottke's blazing licks have inspired guitarists worldwide for nearly the entire length of his legendary four-decade career. With a wry, almost comical approach to life and songwriting, mixed with unfathomable skill, Kottke is one for the ages. Friday, Kottke returns to the South Sound for a show at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts in Olympia. Come out and be amazed.

  • Washington Center for the Performing Arts, 8 p.m., $30-$50, 512 Washington St. SE, Olympia, 360.753.8585

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 10: HIP-HOP 4 THE HOMELESS

Founded in 2002 by Olympia DJ and hip-hop activist Luvva J- real name Jose Gutierrez Jr. -- in Vancouver, B.C., the non-profit organization Hip-Hop 4 the Homeless has now been spreading awareness of homelessness for a decade. Once a year, Luvva J and friends host the two-day event that includes one day of live performances by various hip-hop artists and offers free admission with donations of clothes, blankets, tents, food or anything that could be useful to the homeless. Day two of the annual event offers open doors to the homeless community, providing those in need the opportunity to take whatever necessities are available from the previous night's donations. A warm meal is also provided, along with a haircut and professional massage. In 2006 Luvva J decided he wanted to move the organization to the states and since then Olympia has happily become its home. "The purpose of this event is to not only spread awareness of the issue but to encourage folks to get involved and develop a deeper understanding surrounding poverty in America" says Gutierrez, who has written for the Volcano in the past. This year's Hip-Hop 4 the Homeless music showcase promises some of Olympia, Seattle and Portland's best, including DJs, spoken word and live performances by Khingz & OTOW Gang, Alex Duncan, Afrok & The Movement, Speaker Minds and many more.

  • Olympia Ballroom, live music showcase Saturday, March 10, 5 p.m. - midnight, $5 or donation for the homeless, all-ages, 116 Legion Way SW, Olympia

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 10: HARMONY SWEEPSTAKES

The Harmony Sweepstakes may sound like a new dating service, but it's actually an annual event in Olympia featuring some of the region's best a cappella talent. No kidding. A night of music and awards, Saturday's festivities will include hosts and guest artists The Baudboys, the 2011 first-place champions, along with event emcee Smilin' Jay of Olympia's KGY AM/FM radio. Event hype available on the Washington Center's website promises, "an evening of impeccable harmonies and scintillation arrangements." Hard to go wrong there.

  • Washington Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 p.m., $15-$25, 512 Washington St. SE, Olympia, 360.753.8585

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 10: THE BAD PLUS

Everything is jazz. Or damn near everything. As The Bad Plus proves, bald heads and fu Manchu mustaches are pretty freakin' jazzy, too. But let us not trivialize this world-renowned jazz band, hitting Tacoma's Pantages Theater Saturday, as anything but remarkable. There's good reason why Billboard, and subsequently the Broadway Center's website, hypes the band as, "America's most "audacious, rule-breaking jazz trio." It's because all those aforementioned adjectives apply. Plus there's the facial hair. Catch The Bad Plus in Tacoma Saturday taking on Stravinsky's Rite of Spring - a pairing that should make for quite an evening of entertainment.

  • Pantages Theater, 7:30 p.m., $24-$56, 901 Broadway, Tacoma, 253.591.5890

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 10: POETRY OUT LOUD STATE FINALS

In high school, you went to State in pizza eating and acne. It could have been cooler. Saturday, you'll have a chance to see a dozen Washington high school students get a better jump on their lives than the Little Caesar's slogan, "Pizza! Pizza!" ever afforded you, competing in the Poetry Out Loud State Finals. Presented by the Washington State Arts Commission, with support from the National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation, Saturday's Poetry Out Loud State Finals will pit winners from seven regional finals held across Washington state in an ultimate throwdown of poetry recital. Along with ultimate statewide bragging rights, competitors will be vying for an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. to participate in the Poetry Out Loud national finals.

  • Rialto Theater, 1 p.m., free, 901 Broadway, Tacoma, 253.591.5890

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 10: AUGUST WILSON'S JITNEY

Playwright August Wilson is best known for his Pittsburgh Cycle - a series of 10 plays each set in a different decade recalling the struggles and comedies of the African American experience in the 20th Century. That's what happens when you win two Pulitzer Prizes for Drama. At 3 p.m., the Broadway Center, Northwest Playwrights Alliance and hosting venue Washington State History Museum bring us a staged reading of Jitney, part of Wilson's Pittsburgh Cycle that centers on a cab driver's station in the late 1970s. Hype on the Broadway Center website describes the play, saying "his character driven performance features sharp-witted, hustling co-workers who gossip, argue and dream in between jobs."

  • Washington State History Museum, 3 p.m., $14, 1911 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, 253.272.3500

>>> SUNDAY, MARCH 11: FREE ELECTRONICS RECYCLING

Speaking of how everyone is becoming a major techie, collecting newfangled and ever-fancier gadgets at warp speed, our desk drawers here at Weekly Volcano World Headquarters sure are full of a lot of obsolete pieces unwanted tech - from flip phones to classic Fisher Price Viewmasters. While we're not about to give away the Viewmasters, everything else can go - which is why we'll likely head to Sunday's free electronics recycling event in the parking lot of Tacoma's Champion Centre (1819 E 72nd St., Tacoma). Organized by the Seattle-based organization Friendly Earth, the goal of Sunday's event is to take as much unwanted tech off the streets as possible, and recycle it instead of letting it rot in the ground or in your desk drawer. Tax write offs will be given to any donated tech, and the list of accepted electronics is substantial, including appliances, metals, computer equipment and components, home and business electronics, batteries and machinery. Sadly, speakers, light bulbs, paints, wood based products and small miscellaneous plastics will not be accepted - making disposing of that pimped out yet unused lizard tank in your closet still difficult.

  • Champion Centre - Parking Lot, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m., 1819 E 72nd St., Tacoma

>>> SUNDAY, MARCH 11: OLYMPIA SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA

The close of the week offers a chance to join the Olympia Symphony Orchestra and guest pianist Wolfgang Wortberg for "By Audience Request," a performance promising Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 15, Verdi's Overture to NabuccoI, Grainger's Irish Tune from County Derry and Stravinsky's Suite from The Firebird. While the Olympia Symphony Orchestra rarely-if-ever disappoints, much of the pre-show hype for this events centers on Wortberg's piano skills, and rightly so. As the Symphony's website notes, "Known for his musical insight, beautiful tone, and technical command, pianist Wolfgang Wortberg has performed in venues across the United States and Europe.  Audiences and critics alike acclaim his unique concerts: portraits of a single composer, interweaving music with insightful reflections on the life and work of the composers themselves and their contemporaries." Catching Wortberg and the Olympia Symphony Orchestra as a Sunday nightcap seems like a sure bet for good times and ageless music. But you're advised to test that statement for yourself.

  • The Washington Center for the Performing Arts, 7 p.m., $20-$50, 512 Washington St. SE, Olympia, 360.753.8585

WHAT SOME OF OUR STAFF MEMBERS ARE UP TO

CHRISTIAN CARVAJAL Theater Critic
Don't imply I have no plans for this weekend, pal. This ain't some total dweeb you're talking to. I preordered the Game of Thrones Blurays, so...wait, that doesn't help my point.

JOANN VARNELL Theater Critic
Depending on how naptime goes, we may be attending a birthday party for a one year old on Saturday. Sunday I will be reviewing Tacoma Little Theatre's Someone to Watch Over Me. The rest of the time I intend to hang out with my now 19-month-old son and spend some time writing for my blog.

JOSH RIZEBERG Tacoma Hip-Hop Writer
Friday I'll be teaching my Spoken-Word/Poetry class at the D.A.S.H. Center. Class is all-ages and is open for enrollment and drop-ins are welcome! After that I'll be performing with Abom the Kid and Awall A.K.A. 2-Piece at Krickets in Spanaway for Abom's "Rookie of the Year" show. Saturday I'll be going to Olympia to support the annual Hip-Hop 4 the Homeless benefit. It's packed with great talent from Olympia, Tacoma and Seattle. This might be Olympia's best yearly hip-hop event. Looks like Sunday I'll just be chilling with The Family!

NIC LEONARD Olympia Hip-Hop Writer
Friday night Free Whiskey is playing an all-ages show at the Don't Stop Printing Shop for the Fresh Heads EP release party, so I will be partaking in that. Saturday I will be at Hip Hop 4 The Homeless.

ALEC CLAYTON Arts Critic
Our big plans include going to see "The Color Purple" (the musical) at Tacoma Musical Playhouse Saturday night and a PFLAG meeting in Olympia Sunday.

MOLLY GILMORE Arts Writer
Friday is Leo Kottke at the Washington Center. Saturday is my daughter's birthday party (at Alley Oop Gymnastics) and then a kirtan with Shantala at Waves Studio.

JENNI PRANGE BORAN Arts and Feature Writer
There's nothing to write home about scheduled for Saturday, hoping to catch up on re-writing a script that's been crying out for attention, but on Sunday I'll be enjoying a Living Social adventure I purchased called "Shootin' and Drinkin'" which involves a trip to a shooting range and a brewery--hopefully in that order.

NIKKI TALOTTA Music Writer
This weekend brings a much needed shopping date with my hubby. We get to pick out a laptop without the continued interruption of our children's needs! We may even go to lunch - can't remember the last time we did that... Ah, the joys of parenting.

REV. ADAM MCKINNEY Music Writer
I will be heading out to the New Frontier for the Sound Icons show -- a spectacle that I cannot pass up. However, I recently found out about a show at Dorky's Arcade on the same night (too late to include it in the paper, unfortunately) featuring the Cutwinkles, the Fabulous Downey Bros., a great band called the Hoot Hoots (whose record I am now obsessed with), and the untouchably ludicrous air-band, Airpocalypse. It's going to be a profoundly nerdy evening of indie rock.

JOSEPH IZENMAN Theater Critic
Aside from the general awesomeness that is taking Friday off from work to do nothing but music, I'll pretty much be sitting in one theater or another most of the weekend. Thursday night is preview night for "The Color Purple" at Tacoma Musical Playhouse, Friday night we're off to PLU for "Rabbit Hole," and Saturday is capped off by seeing jazz trio The Bad Plus rock through Stravinsky's "Rite of Spring" at the Broadway Center.

STEVE DUNKELBERGER Photographer
I am doing nothing but working at home with my nose in books and spreadsheets. But I might his Amocat's music bash on Friday.

LINK: Even more local events that we recommend

LINK: Comprehensive South Sound Arts & Entertainment Calendar

March 8, 2012 at 9:39am

5 Things To Do Today: "Rabbit Hole," Sandy Harvey, Hacienda Real, Musicians Night at Rock the Dock Pub and more ...

Capitol Steps return to Olympia and the Washington Center tonight.

THURSDAY, MARCH 8, 2012 >>>

1. Almost exactly a year ago the Washington D.C. comedy troupe Capitol Steps descended on Olympia and the Washington Center for the Performing Arts, bringing with it a full bag of political humor and clever song parodies about things that rhyme with Scalia. Major laughs ensued. Tonight the Steps return to our state capital, no doubt full of new material thanks to a whole year of new inspirations - from the seemingly endless Republican presidential candidate debates to the many sweater vests of Rick Santorum.

2. PLU debuts David Lindsey-Abaire's Rabbit Hole tonight at the school's Studio Theater. The production starts at 7:30 p.m. According to hype, "Ultimately, as Rabbit Hole so beautifully demonstrates, compassion for ourselves and for each other makes us stronger as individuals and wiser as a community."

3. Slide in and catch Sandy Harvey in the Piano Lounge at El Gaucho in Tacoma tonight. The swank gets heavy around 6 p.m.

4. Thursday is the new start of the weekend, and what better way to kick things off than the open mic and "Musicians Night" at Tacoma's Rock the Dock Pub & Grill and hosted by Big D of 9 Pound Hammer? There's really not. The fun starts at 9 p.m. and there's absolutely no cover.

5. Weekly Volcano hip-hop columnist Josh Rizeberg gave us the lowdown this week on Hacienda Real. Tonight, check out the club for yourself during "Thursday Night South Sound with Skrilla and DJ J City." Expect a Top 40 party kicking off at 9 p.m.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

LINK: Live music tonight

March 1, 2012 at 12:40pm

WEEKEND HUSTLE: Oly Startup Weekend, South Sound Sustainability Expo, Snake Lake Science Fair, Young Ladies and Gentlemen, 100 Voices, "Carnival," and more ...

There's got to be at least 100 voices in this photo ...

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

WEATHER REPORT

Friday: Rain showers, hi 45, lo 43

Saturday: More rain, hi 50, lo 43

Sunday: Chance of sun, hi 55, lo 43

>>> MARCH 2-4: OLY STARTUP WEEKEND

Perhaps you have the next big idea floating around in your head, but you've so far been unable to see it to fruition because you're just one little person. The coming Olympia Startup Weekend, Friday through Sunday at Saint Martin's University in Lacey, could be the answer to your dilemma. Billed as an "intense 54 hour event," Olympia Startup Weekend aims to combine great ideas with talented people and watch the creativity and innovation ensue. According to hype, "The weekend brings together people with different skill sets - primarily software developers, graphics designers and business people - to build applications and develop a commercial case around them." Registration and an entry fee are required for the three-day event - go to olympia.startupweekend.org for more information.

  • Saint Martin's University - Harned Hall, times and ticket info at olympia.startupweekend.org, 5000 Abbey Way SE, Lacey, 360.491.4700

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 3: SOUTH SOUND SUSTAINABILITY EXPO

Fun fact: Before there were expos, people had no idea how to disseminate information about sustainability. It was a bleak time. Luckily, events like Saturday's South Sound Sustainability Expo at the Tacoma Convention and Trade Center have solved this problem, bringing "green" to the masses. According to hype, the South Sound Sustainability Expo is "intended to provide residents and business owners in the greater Tacoma metropolitan area a place to discover services, products, companies, and agencies in our region that address sustainability needs in our community." As part of that goal, instruction and information on everything from urban chicken cooping to waste minimization and recycling will be discussed. Transportation alternatives will also be covered, making the event's parking lot the likely target of the Tacoma Weekly editorial team. Be advised.

>>> THROUGH MARCH 3: METAMORPHOSES

Your transition from indie-scenester to minivan-dad has been nothing short of a metamorphoses. So there's a good chance you'll enjoy the University of Puget Sound's take on Mary Zimmerman's Metamorphoses, which according to pre-production hype is "based on a series of tragic and joyous ancient Roman myths," in which characters "fall in love, lust for riches, and reach for power. Zimmerman's piece weaves a series of stories based on the classical poem Metamorphoses, written by the Roman poet Ovid (43 B.C.-A.D. 18). Directed by John Rindo, Metamorphoses runs at UPS through two weekends. Bring your minivan.

  • University of Puget Sound - Norton Clapp Theatre, 7:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday, matinees at 4 p.m., Thursday, March 1 and 2 p.m., Saturday, March 3, $11 for general public, $7 for seniors (55+), students, military, and UPS students, faculty and staff, 1500 N. Warner St., Tacoma, 253.879.3419

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 3: SNAKE LAKE SCIENCE FAIR

Kids these days are no damn good. You hear about it all the time. But Saturday at the Tacoma Nature Center anyone interested can get a look at some of the positive things kids are capable of - like baking soda volcanoes and paper towel strength test. It's called the Snake Lake Science Fair, and kids from throughout Tacoma - many of them homeschooled - will participate with gusto this weekend, making for an event that's sure to be both enjoyable and enlightening. And it's also free to drop in on. The kids have been working for a long time on these projects (deadline for application was in late February, and there was a $10 application fee), so we expect a topnotch science fair.

  • Tacoma Nature Center, 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. public viewing, free admission, 1919 S. Tyler, Tacoma, 253.591.6439

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 3: YOUNG LADIES AND GENTLEMEN

It often seems like good manners went out of style a long time ago (especially when hanging in Weekly Volcano World Headquarters). But the truth couldn't be more different. Making a good impression is as important today as it ever was - and the bottom line is today's kids just probably aren't as coached-up on it as they used to be. Enter Pierce County Parks and Recreation, and Final Touch Finishing School, which together on Saturday will offer a day-full of manners instructions for kids. The morning class, "Young Ladies & Gentleman 1," intended for ages 6 -11, will teach the basics, like table manners and introductions that don't involve fart jokes. The afternoon session, "Young Ladies & Gentleman 2,"  intended for ages 11-16, will delve a little deeper, breaking down the do's and don'ts of being a host and guest. If a need for bribery arises when signing up little Suzy and Johnny, apparently cake will be served during the afternoon class, and the morning class includes a goodie bag.

>>> SATURDAY, MARCH 3: 100 VOICES

How many voices does one concert need? One? Several? Maybe 50? Saturday in Olympia the sixth annual 100 Voices Concert will offer more amazing voices in one place than you could ever desire, combining the talents of the Saint Martin's University Chorale, the Opera Pacifica Chorus, the South Puget Sound Community College Choirs and the Olympia Chamber Orchestra for an evening sure to be highlighted by the planned in-English performance of A German Requiem by Johannes Brahms. That's so hot. The yearly and much-loved event will be held in conjunction with Olympia Chamber Orchestra's Concert Series. Weekly Volcano theater critic Christian Carvajal will be voice number 53. Read about his adventures in the 100 Voices Concert production on our blog, Spew.

  • Kenneth J. Minnaert Center for the Arts at SPSCC, 7:30 p.m., $2-$17, 2011 Mottman Road SW, Olympia, 360.753.8585, olytix.org

>>> SUNDAY, MARCH 4: CARNIVAL

The Tacoma Youth Symphony Association brings its 2011-2012 season to the Rialto Theater Sunday for a performance by the much-loved Tacoma Youth Symphony Orchestra. Titled Carnival, and thematically including Antonín Dvorák's "Carnival Overture," Robert Huchinson's violin-piece "Maria Sampen," and Witold Lutoslawski's "Concerto for Orchestra," Sunday's afternoon concert should deliver in all facets of awesomeness. Coolest of all: 100 free main-floor tickets for students of high school age or younger will be available at the door on the day of the performance.

  • Rialto Theater, 3 p.m., $6-$7, 100 free main-floor tickets for students high school age and younger will be available at the door, 310 S. Ninth, Tacoma, 253.591.5890

>>> SUNDAY, MARCH 4: OLYMPIA DANCE FESTIVAL

Jazz hands, everyone! Sunday brings the third-annual Olympia Dance Festival to the Washington Center for the Performing Arts. Combing the dance talents of several regional dance troupes - listed on the press release as Ballet Northwest, Debbi's Dance, Etc., Johansen Olympia Dance Center, Mas Uda Middle Eastern Dancers, Random Acts of Dance Collective (RADCO), Slieveloughane Irish Dancers, Southwest Washington Dance Ensemble and Studio West Dance Academy - this yearly event typically inspires smiles and rounds of applause. Southwest Washington is full of dance talent, and the Olympia Dance Festival routinely puts that fact on full display.

  • Washington Center for the Performing Arts, 2 p.m., $10, 512 Washington St. SE, Olympia, 360.753.8585

WHAT SOME OF OUR STAFF MEMBERS ARE UP TO

CHRISTIAN CARVAJAL Theater Critic
My wife and I are singing Brahms's Requiem at South Puget Sound Community College (along with 150 other voices). Also, we really need to get caught up on Justified.

JOANN VARNELL Theater Critic
This weekend I will be celebrating my 37th birthday. Saturday morning the little son and I will hit Corrina Bakery to pick up my lavender honey cake and vegan/gluten free cupcakes. We will possibly go to the zoo or something else fun. That evening my husband will make tamales and unveil his "low-key" surprise (not ponies or massages from my friends). Sunday we will go to church and rejoice that we are FINALLY getting over being sick.

JOSH RIZEBERG Tacoma Hip-Hop Writer
Friday I'm bringing in the multi-talented James Ray to guest lecture at my spoken-word/poetry class at the D.A.S.H. Center For the Arts at 6 p.m. drop-ins are encouraged! James Ray is an amazing poet, singer, and M.C. Saturday I'll be at the Red Room at The Breaklites SXSW send-off show with Chief Noo nd JaiXJerm. Sunday I'll be making a cameo in Awall A.K.A. 2-Piece's new video with Duranged Pitt and Duce 1 of Bo$$ Fam' new single, "Flawless." I'll be slapping bones, playing spades and having a good-time!

NIC LEONARD Olympia Hip-Hop Writer
I don't have anything big going on this weekend.  I plan on laying low, watching tv and writing music at my house.  I will only leave my home to re-stock on ciggerettes and food.

JENNIFER JOHNSON Food & Lifestyles Writer
Going to Vagabond Opera’s CD release party at the Triple Door in Seattle on Friday. Volunteering to cleanup park trails Saturday followed by attending the first annual “Shake, Rattle & Roll” Slider Cook-Off at the Museum of Glass. Sunday is a full day of church and much needed relaxation.

ALEC CLAYTON Arts Critic
We are going to the Seattle Rep to see two plays, "I Am My Own Wife" and "Red."

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MOLLY GILMORE Arts Writer
Friday, I'll be in downtown Olympia for First Friday; a friend has an art show opening at Capitol Florist. Saturday, I'm rehearsing for a puppetry and dance performance that will be happening at the Ocean Shores Razor Clam Festival March 24. And Sunday afternoon, I'll be listening to Seattle a cappella ensemble The Esoterics in concert at St. John's Episcopal Church in Olympia.

JOSHUA SWAINSTON Long Feature Writer
A four year old has held me and my wife captive. We are only to be released after chaperoning said four year old to the movie The Lorax.

NIKKI TALOTTA Music Writer
This girl is not doing much. Maybe some gardening and a trip to the redbox. Haven't seen Moneyball yet, should go good with some popcorn and PBRs. Exciting stuff.

STEVE DUNKELBERGER Photographer
It's movie time with the chillens this weekend and maybe a trip to Northwest Trek or Gibson's for some frozen yogurt, because that's how I roll.

LINK: Even more local events that we recommend

LINK: Comprehensive South Sound Arts & Entertainment Calendar

February 25, 2012 at 9:26am

5 Things To Do Today: DJ Eric at Club Silverstone, music galore, Paper Airplane Flight School and more ...

SATURDAY, FEB. 25, 2012 >>>

1. It's another big night for music in the South Sound. In Tacoma catch EvergreenOne's solo album release party with The BreakLites and more, see Coolio at Hell's Kitchen, or head to the New Frontier for a beach part of epic proportion. For a full rundown of what's happening musically in the South Sound, find the Volcano's comprehensive live local music listings here.

2. Sure, you've tried the pizza and rum at Stonegate Pizza on South Tacoma Way - but have you dropped in on the club's comedy night yet? Tonight's your chance! Other comedy options include Tommy Savitt and Jeremy Greenberg at the Comedy Underground at Big Whisky Saloon, comedian Owen Straw at the Grit City Comedy Club, and comedian Mike MacRae at Tacoma Comedy Club.

3. At Tacoma's Club Silverstone, DJ Eric spins queer-friendly dance hits all night long!

4. Off the beaten musical path, Source Yoga in Tacoma's North End presents Music Without Borders: An Evening With Gary Stroutsos. It's all ages and starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets run $15-$20.

5.In Olympia, round up the kids and head to the Olympic Flight Museum for Paper Airplane Flight School. Good times are guaranteed. Find more info here.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

LINK: Live music and DJs tonight

LINK: The Weekend Hustle

February 24, 2012 at 9:54am

5 Things To Do Today: Kim Archer, Get Lucky Friday in Puyallup, Brotherhood of the Black Squirrel and more

Kim Archer performs tonight at the Tempest Lounge.

FRIDAY, FEB. 24, 2012 >>>

1. It's a huge night for music in the South Sound. In Olympia, Free Whiskey will unleash on the Capitol Theater. In Tacoma catch Brotherhood of the Black Squirrel at the New Frontier. For a full rundown of what's happening musically in the South Sound, find the Volcano's comprehensive live local music listings here.

2. If it's comedy you're looking for, the Comedy Underground at Tacoma's Big Whisky Saloon presents comedians Tommy Savitt and Jeremy Greenberg. At the Grit City Comedy Club comedian Owen Straw will get the crowd laughing, while at the Tacoma Comedy Club Mike MacRae continues his weekend stand in T-Town.

3. It's another "Get Lucky Friday" at O'Henry's Sports Bar in Puyallup. You've really never "gotten lucky" until you've gotten luck at O'Henry's in P-Town.

4. One of Tacoma's favorite performers, Kim Archer, will do her thing tonight at the Tempest Lounge on Hilltop. The good times are all ages and start at 7:30 p.m.

5.If you enjoy art, and enjoy kids, check out the youth art show today at King's Books in Tacoma. You can find details here.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

LINK: Live music and DJs tonight

LINK: The Weekend Hustle

February 23, 2012 at 9:58am

5 Things To Do Today: OlyBlues Dance Night, Word 3rd Thursday, Tahoma Tea and Co. open mic and more ...

Volcano hip-hop columnist Josh Rizeberg hosts Word 3rd Thursday tonight at Hell's Kitchen. It's a record release show for Fatal Lucciauno.

THURSDAY, FEB. 23, 2012 >>>

1. It's OlyBlues Dance Night at the Eagles Hall in Olympia. The fun is all-ages, starts at 9 p.m., goes down on the third floor and cost $5. And loners needn't worry - there's no partner necessary.

2. Celebrate Word 3rd Thursday tonight at Hell's Kitchen (produced, in part, by Volcano hip-hop scribe Josh Rizeberg). Hosted by Mr. Von and Rizeberg, tonight's event is an album release show for Fatal Lucciauno of SportnLife Records. The bill also includes Shao Sosa, Greg Double, Todd Sykes, Handle-Bar Raw and DJ Iceman.

3. The Tahoma Tea and Co. used to be The Den. It's still awesome. Tonight, leading into a weekend of "grand opening" shows, Tahoma Tea and Co. hosts an all-ages open mic from 8 - 10 p.m.

4. Get in on the Ram Restaurant and Brewery's version of the Geeks Who Drink pub quiz tonight by heading to the Ram on Ruston Way. Starting at 8:30 p.m. there'll be questions and drinking and more questions and plenty of fun.

5. Comedian Mike MacRae drops into the Tacoma Comedy Club tonight for a laugh-filled stay that runs through Saturday.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

LINK: Live music and DJs tonight

February 16, 2012 at 12:36pm

WEEKEND HUSTLE: The Finisterra Piano Trio, Pancakes at St. Martin's, Occupy talk with David Korten, "Neddie Learns the Blues," "Don't Fence Me In," Pie Fest 2012 and more ...

The Finisterra Piano Trio will perform Saturday at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma.

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

WEATHER REPORT

Friday: Rain showers, hi 52, lo 39

Saturday: More rain, hi 45, lo 39

Sunday: Even more rain, hi 46, lo 34

>>> FRIDAY, FEB. 17: THE FINISTERRA PIANO TRIO

Right alongside all the LMFAO in our iPods there's a shit-ton of jams from The Finisterra Piano Trio, a Seattle-based outfit formed in 2003 and glowingly referred to as, "one of the most recognized chamber ensembles in the Northwest." What can we say? There's just not much that gets the party started like when the Finisterra Piano Trio busts into a piano number form Russia or the Czech Republic. Don't believe us? Well, see for yourself Friday at the University of Puget Sound when the Finisterra Piano Trio does just that - giving audiences an entire evening of music from Russia and the Czech Republic in a performance fittingly titled, "Finisterra Piano Trio Plays Music From Russia and the Czech Republic." Part of the Jacobsen Series of concerts, the UPS website says to expect works by Czech composers Antonin Dvorák and Josef Suk, and Russian composers Anton Arensky and Rodion Shchedrin.

  • The University of Puget Sound - Schneebeck Concert Hall, 7:30 p.m., $12.50 general admission, $8.50 seniors, free for current UPS students, 1500 N. Warner, Tacoma, 253.879.3419, pugetsound.edu

>>> SATURDAY, FEB. 18: ST. MARTIN'S PANCAKE FEED BREAKFAST

You're damn right we love pancakes. Like, we Ron-Swanson love pancakes. It's an almost unsettling level of obsession. But whatever. We'd eat pancakes for almost any reason or cause, making Saturday's pancake breakfast at Saint Martin's University benefiting the Campus Ministry's annual mission service a total no-brainer. According to the press release, this year 15 students will travel to Cincinnati, Ohio to work with the Franciscans for the Poor organization. Eat pancakes AND make Cincinnati a better place! It's a win-win! The $5 ticket, which can be purchased prior to the event at the Campus Ministry office, includes pancakes, sausage, fresh fruit and beverages.

  • Saint Martin's - Norman Worthington Conference Center, 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., $5, 5300 Pacific Ave. SE, Lacey, stmartin.edu

>>> SATURDAY, FEB. 18: OCCUPY WALL STREET - MARCHING FORWARD

This Saturday at the Temple Beth Hatfiloh in Olympia, author and editor of Yes! Magazine, David Korten, and a panel of guests will discuss the Occupy movement and how to foster an economy "in which life is valued more than money and powers resides with ordinary people who care about one another, their community and their natural environment." Sounds nice, right? Saturday's talk is sponsored by the Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation, Occupy Olympia, South Puget Sound BRICK and the Alliance for Global Justice.

  • Temple Beth Hatfiloh, 7-8:30 p.m., free, but donations gratefully accepted, 201 Eighth Ave. SE, Olympia, 360.701.5980

>>> SATURDAY, FEB. 18: NEDDIE LEARNS THE BLUES

King's Books is undeniably the literary epicenter of Tacoma these days. So it's not surprising to see local poet and author David Fewster has a book release party and signing lined up Saturday at King's for his latest effort, Neddie Learns The Blues. A picture book illustrated by Tim Bernsau and described as comparable to "a children's book by Tom Lehrer and Charles Schulz as edited by Lenny Bruce," Neddie Learns the Blues is also not for kids ... literally. Apparently they wont sell it to you unless you're 18. All the more reason to celebrate it! Saturday's book signing will be accompanied by a short musical performance by the group Folksingers in Hell.

  • King's Books, 4-6 p.m., free, 218 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma, 253.272.8801, kingsbookstore.com

>>> SATURDAY, FEB. 18: OLY FOOD BANK BENEFIT SCREENINGS

We always endorse seeing a good movie - or two. And, as far as old-school flicks go, Dr. Strangelove and Young Frankenstein are two of the best. Saturday, as part of a celebration of Olympia Film Society's Projectionist Alan King's 50th anniversary, a benefit for the more-than-worthy Olympia Food Bank will offer you an opportunity to see both - with admission to each film only one can of food or a cash donation. Talk about a cheap date opportunity! Throw a little extra green in the can and show your date how caring you are.

  • Capitol Theater, Young Frankenstein 6 p.m., Dr. Strangelove 9 p.m., can of food or cash donation, 206 Fifth Ave. SE, Olympia, 360.754.6670

>>> SATURDAY, FEB. 18: DON'T FENCE ME IN

Americana isn't always associated with artistic feats, but the "Wild West," and American frontier produced its fair share of creativity, from music and poetry to high plains yodeling and western swing fiddle. Saturday in Olympia the National Council for the Traditional Arts presents Don't Fence Me In, a national touring production dedicated to the "celebrated musical and oral storytelling culture" of the American West. The production includes the musical contributions of Wylie and the Wild West, The Quebe Sisters Band, Los Texmaniacs, North Bear and Paul Zarzyski.

  • The Washington Center for the Performing Arts, 7:30 p.m., $7.50-$35, 512 Washington St. SE, Olympia. 360.753.8585

>>> SATURDAY, FEB. 18: THE CYPRESS STRING QUARTET 

According to lore (or, more accurately, the band's - available online), San Francisco's Cypress String Quartet was formed in 1996, and "during its initial rehearsals the group created a signature sound through intense readings of J.S. Bach's Chorales. Built up from the bottom register of the quartet and layered like a pyramid, the resulting sound is clear and transparent, allowing the texture of the music to be discerned immediately." By all accounts it seems to have worked, as the Cypress String Quartet comes to Tacoma under the billing "voice of the new generation of American culture," via the Broadway Center's website. Saturday, the quartet will be joined by jaw-dropping and much celebrated pianist Jon Nakamatsu at the Rialto Theater in Tacoma, joining forces for an evening of Haydn, Beethoven and Brahms.

  • Rialto Theater, 7:30 p.m., $39-$52, 901 Broadway, Tacoma, 253.591.5890, broadwaycenter.org

>>> SATURDAY, FEB. 18: TOWN HALL MEETING

Citizens of the 27th Legislative District in Tacoma are invited to a town hall meeting Saturday, Feb. 18 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Evergreen State College's Tacoma Campus. Sen. Debbie Regala, Rep. Jeannie Darneille and Rep. Laurie Jinkins will all be on hand to offer their views and perspectives on the many challenges our state currently faces. According to an official mailing announcing the town hall meeting, all three lawmakers are "eager to hear your questions and suggestions so that we can continue our recovery and emerge a better and stronger state." Those interested in speaking are encouraged to arrive early and sign in.

  • Evergreen State College - Tacoma Campus, 10 a.m. - noon, free, 1210 Sixth Ave., Tacoma

>>> SATURDAY, FEB. 18: OLYMPIA BAKERS GUILD PIE FEST 2012

There's a lot of bickering and disagreement in this world, but a couple things anyone with a soul can agree on includes the value of helping the less fortunate put food on the table and the value of pie. Amazingly, an event that incorporates both is planned for Saturday at The Olympia Center. Simply known as Olympia Pie Fest 2012, this is an amateur pie-making competition of epic proportion, mixing, well, pie with live music, raffle prizes and "cheerful chitchat," according to the Olympia Bakers Guild website. The best part is all money raised goes to the Thurston County Food Bank and the Senior Nutrition Program. Those interested in entering the Pie Fest 2012 contest can find guidelines (no dairy in the pie fillings!) online at olybakers.com, with pie drop off between 10 - 11:30 a.m. Organizers say each donated pie brings in $50 by the time it's said and done. The pie eating, award bestowing, and general merriment is scheduled from 1 - 3:30 p.m.

  • The Olympia Center, pie drop off 10 - 11:30 a.m., Pie Fest 2012 1 - 3:30 p.m., $5 per entry of five quality cans of food, 222 Columbia St. NW, Olympia, olybakers@gmail.com, 360.628.4480, olybakers.com]

>>> THROUGH FEB. 19: THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH

The Phantom Tollbooth, a children's adventure novel by Norton Juster published in 1961, is loved to this day by children and adults alike. While it's easy to see why children connect to young Milo's tale, it also doesn't take much pondering to see why many adults still harbor a soft spot for the book. Luckily for all parties involved, Olympia Family Theater opened a three-week run of the stage version of The Phantom Tollbooth last week at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts - Black Box. Read Christian Carvajal's Weekly Volcano review of The Phantom Tollbooth.

  • Washington Center for the Performing Arts - Black Box, Friday - Saturday 7 p.m., Sunday 1 p.m., $16 adults, $13 senior/military/student, 512 Washington St. SE, Olympia, 360.753.8586

WHAT SOME OF OUR STAFF MEMBERS ARE UP TO

CHRISTIAN CARVAJAL Theater Critic
With the Best of Oly issue and party safely behind us, my wife and I will bid a fond farewell to our buddy Linza on Friday. (He's moving to Forks--and believe me, if you can think of a Twilight joke, we've already made it.) On Saturday, we're getting drenched with A Bucket of Blood from Theater Artists Olympia.

JOANN VARNELL Theater Critic
Saturday I will be reviewing Willy Wonka at Tacoma Musical Playhouse and hoping it is as good as TMP's version of Peter Pan. Sunday the family and I will go to church and then I'll try to get my review written well before my deadline. Monday, I will thank the presidents for my extra day and try to post on my personal blog (some not so personal things).

ALEC CLAYTON Visual Arts Critic
I'm going to be awash in A Bucket of Blood, the Theater Artists Olympia show at the Eagles Ballroom Friday night. And, by the way, it will be my 69th birthday.

JOE IZENMAN Theater Critic
Everybody who's anybody in Tacoma is going to be at The New Frontier  Friday night to see Shotgun Kitchen (a band I used to be in), Big Wheel Stunt Show (a band I jammed with once), and acoustic opener Joe Izenman (a guy I am). After that, who the hell knows? Rumors abound of bowling parties, and possibly a tour of Tacoma to show off my fancy new bike tights. Only time will tell.

JENNI PRANGE BORAN Arts and Features Writer
I'll be living it up, writer-style, this weekend.  On Saturday I'm chauffeuring film producer Ed Saxon for TheFilmSchool's Substance and Sale seminar. Sunday I'm taking an online screenplay rewrite course.

JOSH RIZEBERG Tacoma Hip-Hop Writer
Friday I'll be teaching my class with special guest instructor Mr. Von. Then I'll be performing at the 8th Anniversary of the Seattle Zulu-Nation with Kept See and Afrika Bambataa in Seattle at Washington Hall. Right after that I'm shooting over to Kent and the Central Saloon to perform at Nuvo The 1's album-release show with Gonzo Family. Saturday I'll be performing at Stonegate Pizza on South Tacoma Way with Blue Nose Music. Busy weekend for me. Three shows in two days.

NIC LEONARD Olympia Hip-Hop Writer
Friday night Free Whiskey has a show in Portland at the Mt Tabor Theatre so I will be doing that.  Saturday night I will probably stay at home and watch this new movie called Shelter that I got from Netflix.

JENNIFER JOHNSON Food & Lifestyles Writer
Friday I will be basking in an all-day spa experience where strong hands work my muscles, rub me soothing oils and masculine voices tell me what an amazing cook I am. Saturday I will receive a much sought after award for doing more knuckle push-ups than my 3rd grade nephew. Sunday I will save a sinking a sinking ship from, well, sinking. And by all of this, I mean that Friday I will go to an Aussie-food themed dinner party, work out till I want to puke Saturday followed by homework and a wedding reception, and Sunday go to church, have dinner with Bilori and watch a movie while melting into my couch.

STEVE DUNKELBERGER Photographer
I will be going to Northwest Trek with the kids since they get in free. Also, we might see a movie or play Wii.

LINK: Even more local events that we recommend

LINK: Comprehensive South Sound Arts & Entertainment Calendar

February 14, 2012 at 1:32pm

MOVIE BUZZ: Sing along with "Annie" at Capitol Theater to benefit POWER

Clear your throat, rehearse those pipes and get ready to belt out song after song from this feel-good musical to raise money for Parents Organizing for Welfare and Economic Rights.

A FUNDRAISER FOR POWER >>>

In time for a swell 30th anniversary appearance, Annie returns to the silver screen this Saturday, Feb. 18, at Olympia's Capitol Theater. But don't come looking for a 3-D reboot like some of these supposed "classics" Hollywood plans to dig up this year. (The Phantom Menace? Wow.) Instead, clear your throat, rehearse those pipes and get ready to belt out song after song from this feel-good musical, and all for a good cause to boot. Every suggested $10 donation collected at the door benefits Parents Organizing for Welfare and Economic Rights.

But please, call the organization POWER. Save that golden voice of yours for the singing.

With offices in Olympia and Seattle, POWER serves the oftentimes powerless (children, seniors, the disabled), working to ensure sufficient social programs exist for these groups. Interestingly, low-income parents comprise over 80-percent of the organization's membership, imbuing the public cry for action with a personal perspective.

"We work hard to get our voice heard," says Monica Peabody, Director of POWER (wish I had a job title like that). "We don't have money to hire lobbyists, but we do have our stories, and we do have our experiences, and we think that our stories and our experiences can challenge misconceptions and stereotypes."

Peabody's fundraising team has decided to tackle serious issues in a distinctive way - with a lighthearted, bubbly piece of movie magic involving one spunky redhead. "I love the character of Annie because she's ... fearless and fierce," says Sfirah Madrone, POWER's office manager and volunteer coordinator.

Tasked with injecting some fun into this fundraiser, committee member Jennifer Kenny recognizes in this hard knock life of ours the power of optimism, creativity and community - three necessary ingredients for any sing-along.

"There's a lot of gloom and doom in the news out there, and we're fighting a pretty big effort here for economic rights," says Kenny, "but it doesn't mean we can't come together and celebrate our own strengths."

With a theater full of voices shouting the lyrics to "Tomorrow" this weekend, gloom is definitely on notice. The show starts 2:30 p.m.. Discover more about POWER by visiting the organization's website at www.mamapower.org

[The Capitol Theater, POWER Presents Annie Sing-along Benefit, Saturday, Feb. 18, 2 p.m. doors, 2:30 p.m. screening, $10 suggested donation (pay what you can), 206 Fifth Ave. SE, Olympia, 360.754.6670, olympiafilsociety.org]

Filed under: All ages, Screens, Olympia, Benefits,

February 12, 2012 at 8:56am

5 Things To Do Today: Kareem Kandi Band, Rich Wetzel, Galumpha, JazzLive at Marine View Presbyterian Church and more ...

The Kareem Kandi Band will play an early all ages show today at the Mandolin Cafe from 2-5 p.m.

SUNDAY, FEB. 12, 2012 >>>

1. The Kareem Kandi Band will play the Mandolin Café in Tacoma today, an early all-ages show that runs from 2 - 5 p.m. Then, at 6 p.m., Denny Foreman and Friends take to the Mandolin stage.

2. Big band leader Rich Wetzel, no stranger to snappy sports coats and even snappier jazz numbers, isn't afraid to make a big promise. So, when he proclaims today's performance at Stonegate Pizza as "the Super Bowl of live entertainment," we shouldn't be surprised. Does this mean we should expect four-plus hours of pomp and Madonna at halftime? Probably not. But what we can expect is a damn entertaining show from Wetzel and his 15-piece jazz rock orchestra.

3.Galumpha hits the Broadway Center in Tacoma and the Pantages Theater today. According to hype, Galumpha offers "(s)tunning acrobatics, striking visual effects, physical comedy and inventive choreography bring to life a world of imagination." Today's show starts at 3 p.m. with tickets running $15 - $29.

4.Sunday means it's time for another Sunday open mic with Jeanlizabeth at the Steilacoom Pub and Grill. There's no cover and the tunes start at 8 p.m.

5. Tonight's JazzLive at Marine View Presbyterian Church in Northeast Tacoma features the Janette West Group. It's all ages and starts at 5 p.m. with no cover.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

LINK: Live music and DJs tonight

LINK: Still time to seize the weekend with the Volcano's WEEKEND HUSTLE

About this blog

News and entertainment from Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s most awesome weekly newspapers - The Ranger, Northwest Airlifter and Weekly Volcano.

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