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September 13, 2014 at 6:21am

5 Things To Do Today: Hilltop Artists 20th Anniversary, Pint Defiance party, Moveable Feast, Golden Drugs ...

Hilltop Artists students from the last 20 years show their creations at the Museum of Glass. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

SATURDAY, SEPT. 13 2014 >>>

1. Museum of Glass and Hilltop Artists present "Hilltop Artists 20th Anniversary," an exhibition highlighting the impact of glass art on the lives of youth, the Hilltop neighborhood, and beyond, opening at 10 a.m. in the Museum of Glass. The exhibition will consist of glass objects, images, and videos, telling a story that spans the past 20 years of Hilltop Artists and the community it serves. The exhibit runs through Feb. 1.

2. The South Sound is quickly becoming a major craft beer destination. Pint Defiance Specialty Beer Store and Taproom is quickly becoming one of the centers of the local craft beer scene. Read Pappi Swarner's love letter to Pint Defiance, then head to the Fircrest beer haven to help them celebrate their second anniversary beginning at 11 a.m.

3. The third annual Moveable Feast - Tacoma’s largest mobile food truck festival - is returning to Cheney Stadium with more than 20 trucks infiltrating Cheney’s infield, and eight bands including Seattle Rock Orchestra, the Rusty Cleavers, Michelle from the Club and Stephanie Anne Johnson. A wide-range of craft beers will be available for guests 21 and older as well. This year’s event will have two sessions from 12-4 p.m. and 6-10 p.m.

4. During the last incarnation of the Tacoma music festival Squeak and Squawk, we were lucky enough to see a band from Oakland, California, called Twin Steps. Led by Drew Pearson, their maniacal frontman, Twin Steps are a stubbornly undefinable group of weirdos who mix warped vocal samples with visceral percussion and interchangeably nightmarish and sweet vocals. Pearson is returning to the Northwest with his new project, Golden Drugs, which streamlines the mayhem of Twin Steps in exchange for a more concentrated dose of dread. Read Rev. Adam McKinney's full feature on Golden Drugs in the Music & Culture section, then catch the band with Chung Antique, Clayface and Derek M. Johnson at 8 p.m. in Northern.

5. Toucan Sam and the Fruitloops seems like a perverse exercise in buckshot blasts of gimmickry. Made up of a Polyphonic Spree-level assemblage of musicians, the Fruitloops specialize in orchestrated punk rock explosions of popular songs done in ukulele. Still, one can only scoff so much in the face of 15 people armed with ukes and dressed in rainbows and sparkles. It's enough to forgive any sense of calculation on Toucan Sam's part, and they're actually quite impressive musicianship allows everyone to relax and enjoy the novelty of this absurd band. Think of them as the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain, but for misfits. Once they pack themselves into the cozy concrete confines of Le Voyeur at 10 p.m., one will be hard-pressed not to join in with the goofy spirit of the whole thing.

LINK: Saturday, Sept. 13 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 12, 2014 at 7:15am

5 Things To Do Today: "And Then There Were None," Park(ing) Day chat, "The School for Lies," Girl Trouble on film ...

"And Then There Were None" opens tonight at the Lakewood Playhouse. Artwork by James Stowe

FRIDAY, SEPT. 12 2014 >>>

1 Whodunit? Criminal mastermind Agatha Christie's 1943 And Then There Were None (Ten Little Indians) - based on her best-selling novel of the same name - is a mind-bending murder mystery that asks that very question. And the Lakewood Playhouse production will keep you guessing, beginning at 8 p.m. Ten strangers are trapped on an island resort and one of them is eliminating them one by one until there are none. If there's a dude wearing a striped shirt and metal claw in the show, our money is on him.

2. Spaceworks Tacoma is excited to announce the latest Spaceworks Creative Enterprise to open its doors, The Blue Octopus on Pearl. Grand opening festivities are set for from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., plus a reception from 6-8 p.m., at 5013 N. Pearl Street in Ruston. Nationally recognized artist Kerry Cole, owner of The Blue Octopus, offers painting parties, an art gallery, and a painting studio at her new location.

3. Holy Leslie Knope! Can you imagine Tacoma without Optimist Park? Without Ursich Park? Without anywhere to take your dog off the leash and let her run? Even in dense, urban areas, open space is a calming force, giving us a place to sit, lie, tag zombies or walk amidst the birds and the trees. National Park(ing) Day - the annual global event where citizens, artists and activists collaborate to temporarily transform metered parking spaces into "PARK(ing)" spaces: temporary public places - invades Tacoma Sept. 19. First, we need to discuss it. Three speakers will present concepts in Pecha Kucha format (20 slides, 20 seconds each) followed by a discussion on the topic of public space and "parklets" (or mini parks) from noon to 1 p.m. at UW Tacoma (Joy Building 215).

4. In its first full production, Tacoma nonprofit theater Working Class Theater Northwest presents contemporary playwright David Ives’s farce The School for Lies at 8 p.m. in the former Deltan Club space at 733 Commerce. Directed by South Sound theater alum Tom Sanders, with a local cast of six men and three women, the farcical, fast-paced and scintillating comedy runs modern variations on Molière's The Misanthrope.

5. Isaac Olsen, the acclaimed Tacoma filmmaker who gave us Quiet Shoes (2010) and Ich Hunger (2013), is related to the Tacoma band Girl Trouble by blood. He's also the guy our readers named Best Filmmaker in 2014. His new documentary, Strictly Sacred, delves into Girl Trouble's archive of historical treasures. "Girl Trouble is a vastly creative band," Olsen explains, "who have brought all their artistic talents to the fore in the pursuit of pure entertainment experience. They were early pioneers of DIY. ... The other unique aspect of Girl Trouble is that they were avid chroniclers of their own story. ... It's almost as if Girl Trouble has been generating biographical material for the express purposes of a comprehensive film." Strictly Sacred opens Friday at 9 p.m. in The Grand Cinema (voted Best Movie House every year) for a week's run. Olsen will lead a discussion after the film.

LINK: Friday, Sept. 12 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 11, 2014 at 7:19am

5 Things To Do Today: Le Diner en Blanc, The Art of Girl Trouble, wine and beer tastings, Golden Hour ...

A scene from last year's Le Diner en Blanc at Wright Park. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

THURSDAY, SEPT. 11 2014 >>>

1. The summer is winding down and clothing retailers are rolling out fall's thick knits and denims, so why on earth are people across the city hitting stores in a mad scramble to find crisp, white duds? It's because Le Diner en Blanc Tacoma outdoor dinner party is from 6-8 p.m. at Wright Park. And if you go and want to help create Instagram pictures as pretty as a postcard, you need to show up in style - all-white style, that is. Yes, looking wicked in white is going to take a little effort, people. But it'll be worth it for what's becoming, along with perhaps the Pride Festival, the fashion spectacle of the summer. Plus, it's a fundraiser for First Night Tacoma. Guests are encouraged to bring a picnic. Tables, tablecloths and chairs will be provided.

The kids are back in school, so it's time for you to take care of yourself. Pour at Four wine bar hosts a wine tasting of "Back-to-School" wines, meaning six delicious wines that will help you relax and you will surely enjoy from 5:30-8 p.m. The Copper Door beer store and taproom hosts a launch party for San Diego's Green Flash Brewing's season triple IPA Green Bullet from 7-11 p.m. New Zealand grown Pacific Gem and Green Bullet hops were used to create this bold IPA with notes of spicy pine, mango and pineapple. Also on tap will be Flash's Saison Diego, East Village Pilsner and Road Warrior Imperial Rye IPA.

3. Filmmaker Isaac Olsen and band Girl Trouble collaborated on a gallery exhibition to accompany the Olsen's film about Girl Trouble, Strictly Sacred. Fulcrum Gallery hosts the exhibit, with an opening-night gala from 6 to 10. It highlights T-shirt art by guitarist "Kahuna" Henderson, paintings by drummer Bon Von Wheelie, a dress worn by octogenarian dancer and Girl Trouble superfan Granny Go-Go, and a massive store of art and arcana from a band that's still happily banging away. Read Christian Carvajal's full story on the show and film run at The Grand Cinema here.

3. Will Eno, a playwright (and Pulitzer finalist) born in 1965, was cocky enough to write his own, 21st-century take on Our Town. The resulting script, Middletown, is less than four years old, so it truly is about the meaning of life in our time. Its ad copy emphasizes the arc of life from birth to death, and that's a fair summation of the play. An anti-Seinfeld, it's a show about everything. It's loaded with jokes, but none are delivered as jokes. We laugh a few seconds later, having solved a mental puzzle. Read Christian Carvajal's full review of Middletown in the Music & Culture section., then catch it at 8 p.m. at Harlequin Productions.

As a band name, Golden Hour sounds like it would give you a pretty clear idea of what to expect - when using the term for photography, golden hour (or magic hour or lavender hour) denotes the period just before sunset when everything is slightly aglow with a reddish hue, lending a softness and clarity to image, so you might naturally picture a twee gentleness to any band that would adopt the name. While there's a certain delicate air to Portland's Golden Hour, there's a lurking feistiness that lends a twitchy energy to their music. Jangly guitars and cooing vocals will suddenly give way to jubilant yelps. Catch the band with Oh, Rose, Camp Wisdom and Sister Palace at 8 p.m. in Northern.

LINK: Thursday, Sept. 11 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 8, 2014 at 5:02pm

Girl Trouble: A "Strictly Sacred" fiercely Tacoma gallery and movie house crusade

Bill Henderson's watercolor sketch will be on display at Fulcrum Gallery Sept. 11-14.

"I live in Tacoma, and I'm proud to say it's my hometown!" Quick, can you name the band who sang that? Chances are, the answer is no; and that, my friends, is a crying shame. Would your angsty curiosity be aroused further if we told you that song, "My Hometown," includes the lyric, "Don't get off the bus, 'cause there ain't nothin' for ya here?" No, it ain't Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, it's the Gritty City foursome known (to the unfairly narrow extent they are known, that is) as Girl Trouble.

If that moniker doesn't match the mental real estate you've allotted to such artists as Neko Case or the Sonics, it may be because Girl Trouble resisted the advances of major labels. They've recorded with K Records, PopLllama and Sub Pop but stubbornly avoided dissolution into the mainstream. That's no mere pose. The band's resolutely independent, crafting all their own album covers and promotional materials, even their own zine, since their inception three decades ago. Their sound, a dance-friendly variant of surf punk, evokes beach-blanket bacchanalias while retaining its own insistent pulse. If any local outfit is years overdue for a wave of adoration, this be them. It appears their day of glory has arrived at long last.

Isaac Olsen, the acclaimed Tacoma filmmaker who gave us Quiet Shoes (2010) and Ich Hunger (2013), is related to the quartet by blood. He's also the guy our readers named Best Filmmaker in 2014. His new documentary, Strictly Sacred, delves into Girl Trouble's archive of historical treasures. "Girl Trouble is a vastly creative band," Olsen explains, "who have brought all their artistic talents to the fore in the pursuit of pure entertainment experience. They were early pioneers of DIY. ... The other unique aspect of Girl Trouble is that they were avid chroniclers of their own story. ... It's almost as if Girl Trouble has been generating biographical material for the express purposes of a comprehensive film." Strictly Sacred opens Friday at The Grand Cinema (voted Best Movie House every year) for a week's run.

>>> Colored pencil drawing by Bon Henderson, on display at Fulcrum Gallery Sept. 11-14.

Oh, but that's not all; Olsen and Girl Trouble also collaborated on a gallery exhibition to accompany the film. Continuing a theme, your pick for Best Gallery, Fulcrum, hosts the exhibit, with an opening-night gala Thursday from 6 to 10. It highlights T-shirt art by guitarist "Kahuna" Henderson, paintings by drummer Bon Von Wheelie, a dress worn by octogenarian dancer and Girl Trouble superfan Granny Go-Go, and a massive store of art and arcana from a band that's still happily banging away.

The movie's soundtrack album packs 39 tracks into 79 minutes of booty-shaking mayhem. "My Hometown" made the cut, along with "Neko Loves Rock and Roll" (Ms. Case, a former Girl Trouble go-go dancer, identified the band as one of her three greatest influences), "A Brand New Tacoma" and "Viva Tacoma." So start that attraction! For more deets, check out Girl Trouble's DIY website, Wig-Out.com.

"STRICTLY SACRED: THE ART OF GIRL TROUBLE," Sept. 11-14, opening night reception 6-10 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 11 ($5), Fulcrum Gallery, 1308 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way, Tacoma, 253.250.0520

STRICTLY SACRED, 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12-Saturday, Sept. 13; 7 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 14-Monday Sept. 15; 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 16; 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 17; 9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 18; The Grand Cinema, 606 S. Fawcett Ave., Tacoma, $5-$9.50, 253.593.4474

Filed under: Music, Arts, Screens, Tacoma,

September 5, 2014 at 7:38am

5 Things To Do Today: China Davis, Puyallup Fair, "ETHNOBOTANY," Smart People ...

China Davis celebrates its just released "Arctic Days" CD at The Swiss tonight.

FRIDAY, SEPT. 5 2014 >>>

1. China Davis is a band that is firmly rooted in the foundation of Americana and singer/songwriter tropes with the ability to take in a larger conversation of rock and alternative elements. Along with singer and principal songwriter Ben Fuller, China Davis features the guitar work of Fuller's younger brother Ted Fuller and long time friend and bassist Eric Balcom. Drummer Andy Stockton, also of Clearly Beloved, rounds out the group on drums. Now, with their latest album, Arctic Days, the band is set to build on a foundation of good songs and seasoned workmanship. Read Timothy Grisham's full feature on China Davis in the Music & Culture section., then celebrate with the band at 9 p.m. in The Swiss Restaurant and Pub.

2. It's that time of year again ... school is back in swing, the weather is cooling down and the Washington State Fair at the Puyallup fairgrounds opens today. From Fisher Scones, which have been around for a century, to the appropriately named Totally Fried, which even offers lemonade in a fried state, there's always another bite to grab at the Fair. Of course there's also burgers, pizza, barbecue and international cuisines, as well as a number of wine gardens, cantinas and bars for the older than 21 set. Click here for what's new. Click here for special activity days.

3. Plants were here before us, and they will survive us. Silent partners in our evolutionary endeavors, they may also make fruitful creative companions. Moss + Mineral gallery and store knows this, and will spread the green word through October 12 at the W.W. Seymour Conservatory in Wright Park. ETHNOBOTANY: An Artists' Study of Plants shines sunlight on 12 regional and national artists who venture into the world of ethnobotany through art installations made from a variety of organic and non-organic media. According to pre-show hype, "The scientific field of ethnobotany aims to ‘describe and explain complex relationships between cultures and (uses of) plants, focusing primarily on how plants are used, managed and perceived across human societies.' These uses include as food, clothing, currency, medicine, hallucinogenics, and shelter. The works in Ethnobotany: An Artists' Study of Plants make often surprising connections between botanical life, art, contemporary circumstances, and science." Two green thumbs up. An opening reception from 6-8 p.m. features the wonderful indie music of Alex Tapia.

4. Casey Neill and the Norway Rats are steeped in Portland's eclectic music scene. From dusty rockers to seafaring folk expeditions, the band comes across like the sort of people who gleefully dig through crates of forgotten troubadours from the '60s and '70s. Featuring the essential keys and accordion of Jenny Conlee (of the Decemberists and Black Prairie), the Norway Rats create incredibly textural indie rock that sounds like an elevated bar band playing as the terrible rays of morning light seep in through the windows and past the crowd of swaying insomniacs. Catch the band with Trees and Timber and June Madrona at 8 p.m. in Northern.

5. Tonight's "Smart People" DJ dance party, organized by Tacoma's Mr. Melanin, celebrates the birthdays of several "regulars." Hosted by Gallery of Ambition's Neon Dion, this monthly dance night features Mr. Melanin, theMAYOR from The Breaklites and special guests spinning R&B, electronica, indie rock, house and disco in an improved setting of coolness. Dancing is awesome, but you'll catch yourself gazing at the turntable skills. It's OK. It really begins at 9:55 p.m. at The New Frontier Lounge.

LINK: Friday, Sept. 5 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

September 4, 2014 at 7:45am

5 Things To Do Today: Storm Large, 13 Miles of Bikeway, skate film, DJ Fir$t Lady ...

She’s tattooed; she doesn’t take any shit; and she’s, you know, Storm Large!

THURSDAY, SEPT. 4 2014 >>>

1. Storm Large is all about the performance. After 15 years of performing in clubs and theaters, Storm Large has developed a keen sense for the dynamics of the live setting. Her brand of music - nominally jazz, theatrical rock, cabaret and sultry folk-pop - is uniquely suited to captivating a live audience. Her voice is able to nimbly navigate the belting solos and the plaintive refrains. As a collaborator with Pink Martini, she further honed her already impressive stage presence. She engages with the crowds in a way that harkens back to entertainers of old, filling in breaks with bawdy banter and stories. In the weeks leading up to her new solo album, Le Bonheur, she's stopping in from Portland to do a show at 7:30 p.m. in Theatre on the Square. Don't miss it.

2. Get us a 40-ounce of Powerade, homie! The city of Tacoma will commemorate the completion of Tacoma's 13 Miles of Bikeway and Pedestrian Improvements Project with a gathering at Wright Park. Mayor Marilyn Strickland and former U.S. Rep. Norm Dicks will start the celebration with a ribbon cutting at 5 p.m. at the Division and Yakima entrance near the statues. Then, what better way to celebrate the project than by seeing the improvements in person: Take a 1.5 mile walk with Mayor Strickland and Downtown on the Go; take a southern 3.5-mile bike ride along the project with City Councilmembers Lauren Walker and Marty Campbell to the Lincoln District; or go for a northeast 3-mile bike ride along the project with City Councilmembers David Boe and Robert Thoms through the Proctor District. Afterward, Green Drinks Tacoma will toast the new trails and the 3-mile accomplishments over beers and drinkies at the Harmon Hub beginning at 6 p.m.

3. Since 1972, the Brandywine Workshop has inspired artists of diverse backgrounds to produce innovative collaborations in printmaking. The University of Puget Sound Art Department, with the organization help of Tacoma artist Janet Marcavage, hosts six artists associated with the Workshop - Curlee Raven Holton, Letitia Huckaby, Samella Lewis, Allan Edmunds, Richard Whitman and Tomie Arai - for an exhibit at Collins Memorial Library through Nov. 13. From 5-7 p.m., the Library hosts an opening reception for the artists.

4. Northwest Snowboards presents latest skate film by Thomas Campbell, Cuatro Sueños Pequeños, andthe gorgeously hypnotic gods of surf, sun and neon-punk-jazz of our modern universe The Mattson 2 at 7 p.m. at the Capitol Theater.

5. The Brotherhood Lounge hosts an end of the summer dance party with DJ Fir$t Lady spinning your favorite old school hip-hop, plus other eclectic and funky dance tunes, beginning ta 9 p.m. Twenty-five percent of the sales will go straight to the Thurston County Food Bank.

LINK: Thursday, Sept. 4 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

August 28, 2014 at 7:13am

5 Things To Do Today: Endless Summer Party, Searching for Sugar Man, Middletown, Kareem Kandi ...

Eliot Lipp wants to see your tan tonight at The New Frontier Lounge.

THURSDAY, AUG. 28 2014 >>>

1. If you're one of these mixed up people who enjoy summer, it stands to reason that you wouldn't want summer to end so soon. So, why not attend a totally rad party at The New Frontier Lounge that promises Eternal Summer. No word on whether refunds will be offered in the event that summer should end. In addition to the always welcome beats of Eliot Lipp, there will be cool synths brought by the lovely Lobsana and the incredibly new band Crater. If you can stand dancing in this dumb weather, that is encouraged, as is beach attire, beginning at 9 p.m.

2. The public is invited to celebrate the reinstallation of "Children's Bell" by Larry Anderson from 2-3 p.m., in the park at 3825 Ruston Way, in Tacoma. Anderson will be present at this event, along with Tacoma City Councilmember David Boe, representatives from Washington Partnerships for Action Voices for Empowerment (PAVE), and members of the Tacoma Arts Commission. The sculpture was commissioned as a gift to the citizens of Tacoma from PAVE and other private donors to celebrate the life, spirit and accomplishments of PAVE founder and director Marty Gentili (May 26, 1942-Feb. 28, 1993).

3. Will Eno, a playwright (and Pulitzer finalist) born in 1965, was cocky enough to write his own, 21st-century take on Our Town. The resulting script, Middletown, is less than four years old, so it truly is about the meaning of life in our time. Its ad copy emphasizes the arc of life from birth to death, and that's a fair summation of the play. An anti-Seinfeld, it's a show about everything. It's loaded with jokes, but none are delivered as jokes. We laugh a few seconds later, having solved a mental puzzle. Read Christian Carvajal's full review of Middletown in the Music & Culture section., then catch it at 8 p.m. at Harlequin Productions.

4. You should really stop reading this right now. Seriously. It isn't that Searching for Sugar Man's plot developments are gotcha!-like, but this documentary does boast some bowl-you-over reveals best experienced blind. Swedish filmmaker Malik Bendjelloul treks his camera to South Africa to investigate the legend of Rodriguez, a '70s-era singer-songwriter long rumored dead. Hidden behind long, flowing hair and dark glasses, he sang in folk music bars with his back turned to the audience. His first album got a rare four-star review from Billboard. Neither it nor the second one sold well, and the story seemed to end there. Bendjelloul traces him to South Africa where the singer's music became anthemic for the anti-apartheid Voëlvry movement of the Afrikaans counterculture, and the musician, with his hazy origins and questionable demise, became an icon. OK, that's enough. Grab your lawn chair, maybe a longhaired wig and dark sunglasses, and head to Olympia's Sylvester Park at 8 p.m. for an outdoor screening of Searching for Sugar Man.

5. Readers voted the Kareem Kandi Band Best Jazz Band in our 2014 Best of Tacoma issue. Catch this amazing jazz band for free at 8:30 p.m. in the Hotel Murano's lobby.

LINK: Thursday, Aug. 28 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

August 27, 2014 at 7:47am

5 Things To Do Today: English Beat, photography exhibit, organic food chat, Kittredge Gallery reception ...

English Beat perform at Jazzbones tonight.

WEDNESDAY, AUG. 27 2014 >>>

1. Thanks to the English Beats' "Mirror in the Bathroom," countless kids of the Reagan era perused restaurants for glass tables, hoping to mimic the paranoid - yet chic - stars of the flick Less Than Zero. Led by vocalist Dave Wakeling and punk-toaster/rapper Ranking Roger, the Birmingham, England-based sextet English Beat secured success by merging reggae with mainstream pop. Thanks to VH1's Bands Reunited crew, Wakeling and company remerged 10 years ago. Tonight, at 8 p.m., the English Beat perform at Jazzbones. The Georgetown Orbits and DJ Dubmatix are in the house, too.

2. Experience the work of Washington's talented high school photographers in the Community Art Space at Tacoma Art Museum. The 2014 Washington State High School Photography Competition received more than 4,100 entries, submitted by 1,524 students from 70 Washington schools. Finalists from each of the 12 competition categories are included in the exhibition, which opens today at 10 a.m.

3. Kittredge Gallery on the University of Puget Sound campus hosts an artist reception for two new exhibits from 5-7 p.m. Marita Dingus' "They Still Hold Us" featuring mixed media sculptures from her "Fence" series and Sarah Gilbert's "3000 Miles from Home" new work about the concept of home and a sense of place will be on display through Sept. 27. Gallery talks with both artists will be scheduled during the run of the exhibition.

4. Puyallup River Alehouse hosts the Harmon Brewing Co. crew for a night Harmon beers, giveaways and prizes beginning at 6 p.m.

5. The Tacoma Food Justice Book Club will discuss the story of organic food from its humble beginnings to its industrialization by a number of large producers, and what's good and bad about the industry today as they flip through the pages of Organic Inc.: Natural Foods and How They Grew, by Samuel Fromartz. Fromartz loved cooking and food and its presentation and ecology, so he soon fell in love with Whole Foods; he also loves knowing from whence his ingredients come. Some of the best parts of Organic, Inc. serve as an extension of the farmers market ideal: to put a human face on the otherwise anonymous food-supply line. How do you create a health food Americans actually want to eat? Discuss at 7 p.m. in King's Books.

LINK: Wednesday, Aug. 27 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

August 24, 2014 at 8:25am

5 Things To Do Today: Norwegian modern artists, Love Our Local Fest, Dayclub, best jazz band ...

"Copenhagen, August 1807," part of the Red White and Blue modern-art exhibition debuting at PLU, opening Aug. 24.

SUNDAY, AUG. 24 2014 >>>

1. During the Napoleonic war in 1814, Denmark lost control over Norway, a territory it had held for more than 300 years. Unable to cope, Danes hit the Copenhagen bars, a force that still has a hold on them, often times until 5 a.m. Sunday morning. Norwegian leaders quickly came together to craft a constitution that would establish their land as an independent country. Inspired by the still-relatively new Constitution of the United States (and by older French philosophy), Norway's constitution, signed in the mountain retreat of Eidsvoll May 17, 1814, created a democratic government with a balanced federal authority. With only a few amendments, it has been in continuous force ever since, making it the oldest such constitution in Europe. An exhibition celebrating this remarkable document opened on May 17, 2014 (the constitution's 200th anniversary), at the Eidsvoll Center in Norway - and now that same exhibition opens at 1 p.m. today in the Scandinavian Cultural Center at Pacific Lutheran University Aug. 24. The exhibition, "1814-2014: Red White and Blue-Norwegian Constitution, American Inspiration," is made up of works by 10 renowned Norwegian modern artists - together it's a visual exploration of themes ranging from freedom and stability to the struggles facing democracy and globalization. Each of the 10 chosen artists submitted several works: bold, colorful graphics; subtle ink drawings and photographs; and oil paintings, sculptures and mixed media.

2. Love Our Local Fest, in its fourth year, takes place from 1-9 p.m. at the corner of San Francisco Avenue and Bethel Street in Olympia. The eight-hour festival, which is free to the public, will include a couple new highlights this year. "Synergy Space," hosted by Imaginal Arts, is a 30-foot geodesic dome that will house workshops, community conversations and some musical experiences. There will be Evolutionary Astrology with Ari Moshe Wolf. The festival will include a talk given by West Central Park folks. Founder of Imaginal Arts Leon Janssen will host an "Imaginal Salon." A yoga class accompanied by the Bhava Tree Band is also new. Read Nikki McCoy's full feature on Love Our Local Fest.

3. The Social Bar and Grill's patio is a lovely spot to while away a weekend afternoon, sipping cocktails and old world red wine and watching condo residents walk their dogs. Come Sunday afternoon, resident DJ Mr. Melanin and guest DJs J-Justice, Futurewife, Radius (Chi) and TopSpin spin an eclectic and extremely tasteful selection of lounge, bossa nova and electro soul music 2-6 p.m. This triple threat of delicious happy hour specials, sun and hip tunes is known as Tacoma's only daytime summer party, "Dayclub."

4. Readers voted the Kareem Kandi Band Best Jazz Band in our 2014 Best of Tacoma issue, which is on the street today. Catch this amazing jazz band for no cover at 6:30 p.m. in the Cliff House.

5. Ballet Northwest's Young Choreographers Showcase, now in its 3rd year, features 10 world premiere dances created by aspiring young choreographers at 7 p.m. in the Kenneth J. Minnaert Center. The dances range from ballet to modern to jazz and feature a wide array of music styles.

LINK: Sunday, Aug. 24 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

August 21, 2014 at 7:29am

5 Things To Do Today: Amy Ray, ART WALK, Dustin Lynch, Buddy Banter ...

Amy Ray has gone country.

THURSDAY, AUG. 21 2014 >>>

1. We love "Closer to Fine" as much as the next dirt-kicker, but only ridiculous amounts of cash would have persuaded us to label the Indigo Girls as hard rockers. Which is why Amy Ray's solo albums are such a mind-blower - they pit one half of the pleasant-harmony duo against her previous hold-hands template, opting for more aggressive guitars and cutthroat lyrics. Ray performs at the Capitol Theater at 8 p.m. Come get your folk punk on.

2. The Tacoma Post office Building ART WALK! unleashes marauding gangs of craftspeople, artisans and their multitudinous admirers on the genteel people of Tacoma and the surrounding city under one, very old but bitchin' roof. In June, 300 to 400 people walked through the halls, discussing art, sipping beer and wine and wiggling a little to DJ music. Expect the same vibe from 5-9 p.m., with DJ Schematik in the Office, artwork by Mod Curio, Just Two Guys Creative, Perry Porter, Kristin Giordano, Alex Schelhammer, Abby Kok and Katlyn Hubner, just to name a few. Isaac Olsen and Nick Bulter will screen their films. Willow Eskridge, Kate Monthy and Daniel Martin present the "Ballerina Project Tacoma." Run for your art!

3. The ParkWay Tavern hosts Get Rowdy For Rhinos fundraiser benefiting Drinking For Conservation and Point Defiance AAZK. All you have to do is show up between 6 and 10 p.m. and pour alcoholic beverages down your throat. Fifty cents from each drink will be donated to the cause. There'll also be a donation bucket available, and contributions can be made online.

4. Dustin Lynch grew up listening to neo-traditional country singers Alan Jackson and Clint Black. Although born in Nashville, Lynch was raised in the small town Tullahoma, 70 miles to the southeast. In 2003, he returned to the city of his birth to make it as a country singer. At 7 p.m. Lynch will perform songs off his new album, followed by a Q&A with the audience, at Steel Creek American Whiskey Company. The all-ages show is free.

5. The lo-fi indie rock of San Diego trio Buddy Banter is the kind of laidback pop that comes across as utterly effortless. Elastic guitars call to mind the slacker goof-off rock of Mac Demarco. Much like many other artists in this era of Nostalgia, Buddy Banter make music that could've easily dominated the college radio charts in the early '90s, even as songs like "Little Devil (Come Kick It)" and its bouncy guitars almost sound like the dusty rock of the '70s. What really makes Buddy Banter shine, though, is the purely sunny air that permeates their music. Catch the band with Hot Rush, Lures and Soccer Babes at 8 p.m. in Northern.

LINK: Thursday, Aug. 21 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

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Walkie Talkies said:

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