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February 28, 2015 at 7:32am

5 Things To Do Today: The Classical, vinyl sale, Total Experience Gospel Choir, The Oly Mountain Boys ...

The Classical performs tonight at Dead Olympia record store. Photo Credit: Bert Johnson at www.bertjohnsonphotography.com

SATURDAY, FEB. 28 2015 >>>

1. San Francisco duet the Classical make concise descriptions quite a task. The easiest way to sum them up is to call them baroque art-rock, though that doesn't quite cut it. "Shovel & Bevel" combines clinically mesmerizing drums with odd phrases repeated over and over with darkly expressive strings to create a creepily compelling product. Lead singer and songwriter Juliet E. Gordon pushes the lurching songs forward with her sighing vocals, leaving long stretches of meditative blank space before reappearing to offer more cryptic intonations. Though the songs tend to move slowly, there's a disjointed structure to most of them that manages to keep you on your toes. Check it out at 8 p.m. with Fruit Juice and Retrospecter in Deadbeat Olympia record store.

2.  KAOS 89.3 FM, located in deep West Olympia on the campus of The Evergreen State College, is hosting one of its rare and beautiful music dump or as the station calls it - a "CD & Vinyl Liquidation Sale." In years past, this event was a treasure chest of rare and lost gems of audio delight for collectors of music. It still has that aura, but the "pickins" are more and more slim as the years pass by - with vinyl becoming a scarce commodity you have to get there early and beat the DITC (Diggin' In The Crates) experts. The sale begins at noon in the KAOS lobby.

3. Seattle's acclaimed Total Experience Gospel Choir, led by the Rev. Pat Wright, has performed all over the world, has made numerous recordings, has included Sanjaya (American Idol) and Ray Dalton (Macklemore/Lewis), and has been the featured group in the annual Seattle production of Langston Hughes' Black Nativity. The Total Experience Gospel Choice, er, experience is like no other. They join their powerful voices to create a blend of lyrics, movement, and narrative that variously relate history, point the finger at injustice, encourage activism and sing the praises of love. The University of Puget Sound will host the choir at 8 p.m. in Schneeback Concert Hall, capping the university's Black History Month celebration. The concert will include commentary by the 75-year-old Wright, an ordained pastor whose southern roots and personal musical journey provide a spoken word accompaniment to the choir's ebullient music.

4. Award-winning guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Tommy Castro is famed for his signature brand of tough, rocking rhythm and blues. With his eyes and ears firmly on the future, Castro, along with The Painkillers - original Tommy Castro Band bassist Randy McDonald, Bowen Brown on drums and James Pace on keyboards - has stripped his music down to its raw essence as he rockets into the next phase of his storied career. Whatever. Nobody plays roadhouse like this anymore: the rock snarl and the soul heart. His songs don't make you want to sing along; they make you want to scream along. The band is back at 8 p.m. for a second night at Jazzbones.

5. The Olympia bluegrass quintet The Oly Mountain Boys produced the first bluegrass concept album - centering on the life and hard times of Charlie McCarver in Washington state during the early 20th century. White Horse gallops to traditional bluegrass influenced by the music of Bill Monroe, Ralph Stanley and Earl Scruggs. This is the best brand of bluegrass: energetic and thoroughly heartbroken. Catch the band voted "Best Bluegrass Band" in the 2015 Best of Olympia issue at 8 p.m. with The Student Loan and Mbrascatu in Rhythm & Rye.

Filed under: 5 Things To Do, Music, Olympia, Tacoma,

February 27, 2015 at 7:42am

5 Things To Do Today: International Guitar Night, A Streetcar Named Desire, Nasalrod, Tommy Castro ...

Brazilian jazz master Diego Figuierido performs at the Rialto Theater Feb. 27.

FRIDAY, FEB. 27 2015 >>>

1. If you think the height of guitar music is a stoner's curbside rendition of "Wish You Were," then prepare to have your mind blown. (Seriously - why does every guitarist learn "Wish You Were Here" fresh out of the gate? What's wrong with a little "Bourrée in E Minor?") The Broadway Center for the Performing Arts is serving up an evening of six-string wizardry, brought to you by some of the finest git-axe pickers from around the world - Brian Gore, Andrew York, Diego Figuierido and Maneli Jamal. True, there's no Eddie Van Halen or Tom Morello in the IGN lineup, but we can assure you its artists' lack of household name recognition is undeserved. Catch the 7:30 p.m. concert in the Pantages Theater.

2. When the curtain dropped on the 1947 debut production of Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire, the room - legend has it - was absolutely silent. After a long moment, the stunned audience regained their senses and burst into an ovation that continued for a solid half-hour. University of Puget Sound's production of Williams' classic of love, loss and madness runs through the next two weekends. In the right hands, the play's raw ending (no spoilers here, I promise) still retains the power to take the wind right out of an audience. The word is UPS does just that. The curtain rises at 7:30 p.m. in the Norton Clapp Theatre.

3. We have a hankering for rowdy bluegrass tonight. Maybe it's the rain, the flannel shirts and the switch from Winter Warmers to India Pale Ale. Whatever the case, it's nice. Tacoma's The Cottonwood Cutups are bringing that satisfying pluck and twang and bang to B Sharp Coffee House with McDougall and Nate Dybivek, beginning at 8 p.m.

4. Nasalrod is a lot of goddamn fun. The punk rock Portland foursome create impossibly energetic music that doesn't so much pummel as it grabs you by the shoulders and shakes you about. With stop-start dynamics and gleefully deranged vocals, Nasalrod recall the early days of New Wave and art-rock just as much as the glory days of punk. What makes Nasalrod incredibly exciting, though, is the presence of former Fear member Spit Stix on drums. Having a member of one of the godfathers of punk in your band-and having that person named Spit Stix - is a very Portland thing to have happen. Nasalrod will be joined by C Average and Bullets or Balloons at 8 p.m. in Deadbeat Olympia record store.

5. Award-winning guitarist/vocalist/songwriter Tommy Castro is famed for his signature brand of tough, rocking rhythm and blues. With his eyes and ears firmly on the future, Castro, along with The Painkillers - original Tommy Castro Band bassist Randy McDonald, Bowen Brown on drums and James Pace on keyboards - has stripped his music down to its raw essence as he rockets into the next phase of his storied career. Whatever. Nobody plays roadhouse like this anymore: the rock snarl and the soul heart. His songs don't make you want to sing along; they make you want to scream along. The band hits Jazzbones' stage at 8 p.m.

February 26, 2015 at 7:14am

5 Things To Do Today: JFK program, Olympia Ambassadors benefit, "Angels In America," Barleywine Revue ...

In this public domain photo, President John F. Kennedy rides alongside First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy moments before his death. Hear more about this fateful day tonight in Olympia.

THURSDAY, FEB. 26 2015 >>>

1. We've all seen the footage: President John F. Kennedy in the gleaming dark blue limousine, smiling and waving at the crowd, and then the shot rings out in Dealey Plaza, and everything in a relatively mundane presidential moment has become a piece of history. Author and journalist Dean R. Owen was 7 years old on the day JFK was assassinated. Owen says the tragedy prompted his 30-plus year career in journalism and communications. He will present a multi-media program entitled "John Kennedy: the Man, Myth and Legend," at 7:30 p.m. in the Olympia Timberland Library. The program is based on Owen's book, November 22, 1963: Reflections on the Life, Assassination and Legacy of John F. Kennedy. Owen interviewed nearly 100 people for the book, including White House staff, civil rights leaders, family members of Kennedy, and journalists who covered him. Veteran White House correspondent Helen Thomas, who died in 2013, wrote the foreword.

2. From sweeping alleys, to acting as extra eyes and being a familiar friendly face, downtown Olympia businesses have been benefitting from the Olympia Ambassadors. This of course, has been a pick-me-up for downtown retail. Downtown Olympia Ambassadors provide customer service, directions, and city information to all users of downtown. Our 2015 Best of Olympia issue praises the program multiple times. From 4-9 p.m. The Brotherhood Lounge will host a happy hour benefit for the Downtown Ambassadors, donating 50 percent of drink sales to the program.

3. Traveler Pat O'Connor will discuss his expedition to Antarctica and Argentina with pictures and stories of animals and ice at 7 p.m. in the Parkland/Spanaway Pierce County Library.

4. Volcano scribe Christian Carvajal spent last week in the skin of a monster. He's playing Roy Cohn, the very real attorney who guided the knife point of Sen. Joseph McCarthy's Red Scare, then adamantly denied his own homosexuality even as he was dying of AIDS. He's a character in Tony Kushner's landmark, two-part play Angels in America, directed by Nic Olson for Olympia Little Theatre. The show is challenging for both actors and audiences, and it inspires bizarre moments on stage. Read Christian Carvajal's first person account of Angels In America, Part 2: Perestroika on our Walkie Talkie blog, then catch the show at 7:55 p.m.

5. Barleywine Revue is just awesome. The band writes and performs contemporary, relevant bluegrass and Americana music while paying homage to the traditions that have come in generations before ... think Bill Monroe meets Bill Withers. Oh man, that's fresh! Catch the band with Squirrel Butter at 7 p.m. in The Swiss Restaurant & Pub.

February 25, 2015 at 7:59am

5 Things To Do Today: Hilltop Kitchen Novo Fodo Night, beer drinking, Vince Brown, Positive Rising ...

Novo Fogo on Hilltop, yo.

WEDNESDAY, FEB. 25 2015 >>>

1. If you were drinking a cocktail with the floral notes of a rainforest, the aroma of banana and lime flowers, the earthiness of sweet red peppers and the saltiness of oysters, you'd be drinking cachaca (pronounced ka-SHA-sa), a Brazilian spirit distilled from sugarcane juice. Suffice it to say that, if you enjoy rum, you'll enjoy cachaça. Until recently, the only cachaças available in the States were the industrial style, made in a column still and full of harsh, unrefined flavors. Today, with the upswing in premium-spirits appreciation, high-quality, artisanal cachaça (both aged and unaged) is now easily accessible outside of Brazil, including a new brand of cachaca: Novo Fogo, which translates to "New Fire" in Portuguese. Every week or so, Novo Fogo Cachaça Empresários take over a hot bar somewhere in this country for a few hours of "Brazilian Zen." From 6-9 p.m., Team Novo Fodo - Leroy Thomas and Jim Romdall - visit Hilltop Kitchen to deliver South American alegria in the form of delicious cachaça cocktails and happy times.

2. This week in "Humans and Other Animals," Dr. Erin Colbert-White of the University of Puget Sound will be giving a talk entitled, "Evidence for Language-Like Conversational Strategies by an African Grey Parrot," in which she'll discuss evidence that parrots can pay attention to social contexts and take turnsduring conversations. Check it out at 12:25 in Dougan 201 on the University of Washington Tacoma campus.

3. Several brewer's nights are doing down tonight. Check it.

4. Vince Brown is no stranger to string swing fans in the Northwest. He plays western swing style take-off guitar with Red Brown & the Tune Stranglers; strums guitar and tenor banjo with the gypsy swing band Hot Club Sandwich; he's half of Red and Ruby - a swing duo project with vocalist LaVon Hardison; performs mandolin and tenor banjoist with the old timey outfit Deaf Lester; and the guitarist with the modern jazz/lounge group The Greta Jane Quartet. Brown's nimble fingers have delighted audiences for more than 35 years. Catch his solo jazz guitarist downstairs at Swing Wing Bar & Cafe, the converted bungalow overlooking Capitol Lake in Olympia, from 6-8 p.m.

5. Positive Rising - a Seattle-based reggae band whose members have been rooted in the reggae community for over 10 years - strive to bring a positive message put to catchy hooks and danceable grooves. They have shared the stage with such acts as Natural Vibrations, Easy Star All Stars, Josh Heinrichs & Skillinjah, Kyle & C-Money of Slightly Stoopid, Tomorrows Bad Seeds and Josh Fischel as well as other local acts such as Valley Green, The Approach and Tribal Order just to name a few. Catch them as part of Jazzbones' One Love Wednesday music series at 9 p.m.

February 24, 2015 at 7:44am

5 Things To Do Today: Feast of Thrones, Washington volcano hazards, trivia night, Hungry Skinny ...

"Give our regards to the Night’s Watch. We're sure it will be thrilling. And if it’s not, it's only for life."

TUESDAY, FEB. 23 2015 >>>

1. Even though you don't live in one of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros, dining at King's Landing is a bucket list item for any die-hard Game of Thrones fan. While you won't exactly get the chance to "do what queens do," fans of the show will get the chance to dine on A Feast of Thrones and let their imaginations do the ruling. Bayview School of Cooking instructor Caroline Willard will prepare a feast worthy of the capital of the Seven Kingdoms at 6 p.m. From The Wall, to Highgarden, and across the Narrow Sea, taste dishes taken straight from the pages of George R.R. Martin's hugely popular book series. Spicy Dornish Stuffed Grape Leaves begins the culinary journey, followed by Highgarden Medieval Poached Pears with Cheese, both accompanied by a Honey Citrus Wine from across The Narrow Sea. The main course is Winterfell Beef and Bacon Pie served with a Salad at Castle Black. Sansa's beloved Lemon Cakes from King's Landing are the sweet finish to the menu. Complementary wine pairing, of course! Nothing goes better with Game of Thrones than many swigs of complementary wine - just ask the constantly imbibing characters. RSVP at 360.754.1448.

2. United States Geological Survey specialist Carolyn Driedger will present an eye-opening investigation of the history of volcano study in Washington state at noon inside the Washington State History Museum. Part of the Pacific "Ring of Fire," Washington's mountains are both beautiful and deadly, making the area a key location for early warning technology and observation. Be sure to check out the "Living in the Shadows: Volcanoes of Washington" exhibit before or after the lecture.

3. If you've resolved this year to get your brain, as well as your body, limber, the pub quiz is a great start. This athletics of the mind can be highly rewarding, both tangibly (winning nets you cash prizes, swag and gift certificates) and intangibly (finding an outlet for such mental detritus as the name of the group that sang "Walking on Sunshine" is surprisingly fulfilling). Treos in Old Town Tacoma offers a weekly Tuesday trivia game to up your cultural literacy. Expect three rounds with prizes beginning at 6:30 p.m.

4. Jerry Miller was named one of the top 100 guitarists of all time by Rolling Stone above Eddie Van Halen, Johnny Winter and Randy Rhoads. The Tacoma native has enjoyed a rich career sharing the stage with countless musicians including members of the Doobie Brothers and Carlos Santana. Miller hosts an open jam at 7 p.m. in Dave's of Milton.

5. Hungry Skinny perfect a kind of dirtbag glam befitting their Northern California roots. What initially sounds like the same sort of garage pop that comes from Ty Segall and Mikal Cronin eventually reveals itself to be impeccably assembled rock that draws from the sloppy blues-rock of '60s mods like the Rolling Stones and the Kinks. Filled to the brim with untold amounts of swagger and spit, Hungry Skinny effortlessly recreate the days when the musicians in bands were more totems than men: shorthand in human form for the carefree living and drinking rock 'n' roll supplies in spades. Catch the band with the Loud Potions and Phil Taylor at 7 p.m. in Le Voyeur.

February 23, 2015 at 7:50am

5 Things To Do Today: Author Holly Black, Intro to Urban Gardening, Makedonians, Audio Elixir ...

Author Holly Black / photo courtesy of Youtube

MONDAY, FEB. 23, 2015 >>>

1. Hazel lives with her brother, Ben, in the strange town of Fairfold where humans and fae exist side by side. The faeries' seemingly harmless magic attracts tourists, but Hazel knows how dangerous they can be, and she knows how to stop them. Or she did, once. At the center of it all, there is a glass coffin in the woods. It rests right on the ground and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives. Hazel and Ben were both in love with him as children. The boy has slept there for generations, never waking. Until one day, he does. ... This is how author Holly Black thinks. She discusses her new fantasy novel The Darkest Part of the Forest at 7 p.m. in the University Place Pierce County Library.

2. The Evergreen State College Tacoma will offer a four-session life enrichment course called "Intro to Urban Gardening," Monday evenings, Feb. 23-March 16, from 6 to 8 p.m.  The class costs $100, which includes materials and a home consultation with course instructor Dean Jackson, who is executive director of Hilltop Urban Gardens, a food sovereignty and social justice organization in Tacoma. Jackson has been growing food in urban settings for 10 years and is a master gardener in Pierce County. Course topics will include site selection, building a raised bed, starting a planting calendar and creating proper soil for plant health. During the first session, students will start seeds indoors that will be available as transplants at the end of the class. This non-credit course is geared toward the general public and beginning gardeners with an interest in growing their own food.

3. Get out your dancing shoes and join in the whimsy of a country western shuffle dance, hosted by the Evergreen Country Dancers. The shuffle is sometimes called double two-step or traveling swing, for it also uses components of two-step and the popular East Coast swing. The hoedown begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Olympia Elks Lodge.

4. Throughout the Makedonians' rollicking, energetic set of traditional Balkan music at 8 p.m. in Rhythm and Rye, you will be treated to lessons in Greek musical geography, five-tone scale harmony (most "western" music uses the seven) and how to count some of the more unusual time signatures, ranging from 5 to 25 beats in a measure.

5. Blues trio Audio Elixir performs at 8 p.m. in The Swiss Restaurant and Pub.

February 22, 2015 at 9:26am

5 Things To Do Today: Academy Awards parties, "The Miracle Worker," Bob Rivers, DJ Qualifi ...

In the immortal words of "Unforgiven" - “deserve’s got nothin’ to do with it.” Enjoy the ceremony as part of a lively conversation about contemporary movies.

SUNDAY, FEB. 22 2015 >>>

1. Thanks to The Grand Cinema in Tacoma and Olympia Film Society in Olympia, you can not only stroll the red carpet in your Sunday finest, you might also win one of several fabulous prizes. Show up to Theatre on the Square in a movie costume (Death to Smoochy, anyone?), and you could snag 250 bucks. That'd buy a crap ton of popcorn! Another prize up for grabs is a "Golden Ticket" good for movie admission any time till the next Oscar ceremony. Both events feature great food and drinks, and remember, your odds of winning an Academy Award of your own this year are exactly as good as Jennifer Aniston's or Daniel Oyelowo's! You'll be in beautiful company, in more towns than one. Megastar selfie! Read Christian Carvajal's full feature on the 87th Academy Awards parties in Tacoma and Olympia in the Music & Culture section, then arrive at the Theatre on the Square or Capitol Theater at 5 p.m.

2. Nena Curley was 14 years old when she performed the role of Sarah, one of the blind girls, in the Lakewood Playhouse 2003 production of The Miracle Worker. Twelve years later, Curley is the stage manager and production manager for the theater company's current production of The Miracle Worker, William Gibson's inspiring 1959 drama about blind, deaf and mute child Helen Keller and teacher Annie Sullivan's extraordinary efforts to communicate with her, which hits the stage at 2 p.m.

3. The Gig Harbor Film Festival folks are also hosting an Oscar Party at 4 p.m. in The Hub in Gig Harbor. Dinner will be served as well as red carpet pictures and a champagne toast. The Hub will have a big screen and all the other dialed into the red carpet and the Oscar ceremony. The Gig Harbor Film Festival will have film directors on hand and other local celebrities. Your $50 ticket helps finance this year's Gig Harbor Film Festival.

4. Seattle radio personality Bob Rivers will host a night of Northwest comedians at 8 p.m. in the Tacoma Comedy Club.

5. If you are looking for a crunk, trapped out, hustle-music haven then check out Champions every Sunday at 9 p.m. DJ Qualifi keeps the beats bangin' - deep bass, booty music, trap music, D-Boy/Girl music. ... All. Night. Long.  This is officially one of the spots to hit if you want to appear like you're in a 2015 rap video. Twerkin' will happen. Yeah, Champions is a hole in the wall type bar/club, but it is where Tacoma rocks on a Sunday.

February 21, 2015 at 6:42am

5 Things To Do Today: Specters, Mardi Gras Festival, Puget Sound Piano Trio, Ultra Violent Rays ...

Seattle quartet Specters will perform at The New Frontier Lounge tonight. Photo courtesy of Facebook

SATURDAY, FEB. 21 2015 >>>

1. Seattle quartet Specters are romanticizers of the '90s, as they say. Specifically, they bring the sort of slacker vibe to their music that bands like Pavement mastered. Unlike the weirdo energy that recent slacker rockers like Mac Demarco carry, there is a gentle power pop grandeur to the Specters that honors the guitar rock bands of the past. Melodies and hooks take their time establishing themselves, after which they nonchalantly burrow their way into your ears. at 9 p.m. in The New Frontier Lounge, they'll be sharing the stage with Tacoma favorites Wheelies and Wow, Laura, who will be bringing their brands of ragged rock and mathy pop, respectively. It'll be a night of appreciating the simple pleasures of indie rock, bent and stretched in various directions while respecting the fundamental power of a couple loud guitars.

2. The second annual Mardi Gras Festival is so loaded with authentic music, libations, food and costumes it will have you thinking the Key Peninsula Civic Center is in the middle of the French Quarter.  This year's festival will feature Richard Allen & The Louisiana Experience along with the always-exciting Kim Archer Band. Murph's BBQ will be dishing up ample à la carte New Orleans fare to include Louisiana hot sausage, dirty rice (chicken/pork/vegetarian) and seafood gumbo - topped off with a nice piece of King Cake.  Dinner and no host beverage service begins at 6 p.m., music starts at 7 p.m., and the party goes until 11 p.m.  This is a 21+ event.

3. The University of Puget Sound School of Music faculty members pianist Duane Hulbert, violinist Maria Sampen and cellistDavid Requiro will perform Mozart's Piano Trio in C major, K. 548, whichinterweaves lyrical melodies between the three instruments, while the finale is a romping allegro, with a darker middle section; Spanish composer Joaquin Turina's Circulo: Fantasy for Piano, Violin, and Violoncello, Opus 91, which has three movements, each depicting a different time of day: dawn, midday, and dusk; and Tchaikovsky's Piano Trio in A minor, Opus 50, one of the most dramatic of the piano trios from the Romantic era. The Puget Sound Piano Trio concert is at 7:30 p.m. in Schneebeck Concert Hall.

4. Imagine Philip K. Dick howling at a pale and dangerous moon while Siouxsie Sioux does a rain dance around him, but instead of rain, rainbow-colored fire falls from the sky consuming everything, leaving only a net of blue-gray regret. The Ultra Violent Rays are bassist/vocalist Cooper Gillespie and percussionist Greg Gordon, former Mad Planet members who hail from Silver Lake, California. (It's the arty suburb of Los Angeles that most resembles Tacoma.) UVR describe their style as shamanic goth pop, but there's also something very ‘80s collegiate gloom about them. They're joined at 9 p.m. in Bob's Java Jive by Beatrix Sky, Ishtmusia, masonsapron, and at least two dudes in black coats and guyliner.

5. Members of the Pacific Northwest reggae community have come together to form Stay Grounded -  a band rich in experience and new in concept. Join their good vibeat 9:30 p.m. in Doyle's Public House.

February 20, 2015 at 11:57am

Massing of the Colors in Tacoma

Begun in New York City on Armistice Day, Nov. 11, 1922 as a patriotic ceremony, the Massing of the Colors has become an annual event that salutes national pride and recognizes military service and sacrifice.

On Feb. 22, the Puget Sound Chapter of the Military Order of World Wars (MOWW) will sponsor the area's annual Massing of the Colors Ceremony. The event will begin at 3 p.m. at Stadium High School in Tacoma. Retired Maj. Gen. John Hemphill serves as the ceremony's grand marshal.

Active, Reserve and National Guard units, along with Senior and Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps cadets; armed services auxiliary organizations; state militias; veteran and civic groups; police, sheriff and fire departments; and Boy and Girl Scout organizations with a unit and American Flag are invited and urged to attend. The event is free and open to the public.

The ceremony typically begins with a march in of the various color guard units, followed by an invocation, the Pledge of Allegiance, singing of the national anthem and reading of the MOWW preamble. After remarks by the guest speaker and commander of the hosting MOWW chapter, the flags are blessed in honor of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, followed by the playing of "Taps." The colors are then retired.

Founded in 1919, MOWW is comprised of commissioned officers, warrant officers and flight officers from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard, along with officers of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration and the United States Public Health Service.

The New York chapter of the organization inherited the responsibility for conducting the Massing of the Colors in 1927 after the original organization - a group of military officers, veterans and civic leaders known as the Society of the Massing of the Colors - disbanded. Now, chapters around the country conduct the ceremony each year.

The Puget Sound Chapter, founded in 2001 with the merger of the Tacoma and Seattle chapters, is the only chapter in the Pacific Northwest and includes Alaska, Oregon and Idaho. Its missions include patriotic education, ROTC programs and, of course, the annual Massing of the Colors ceremony.

Each June, the chapter sponsors the Northwest Youth Leadership Conference at Pacific Lutheran University, and its flag program helps educate school children around the region about significance of the National flag and other flags. The chapter also sponsors 52 Junior and Senior ROTC programs in its region, including Alaska and American Samoa, and holds an annual banquet to honor cadets who have excelled in their programs.

Organizations wishing to take part in the processional should call Col. Carroll Dickson at 253.566.5870.

Filed under: Community, Military, Tacoma, Ceremony,

February 20, 2015 at 7:54am

5 Things To Do Today: Strangely Alright, Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, "The Miracle Worker," the Hoot Hoots ...

Strangely Alright performs at The Swiss tonight.

FRIDAY, FEB. 20 2015 >>>

1. Strangely Alright is more than all right - the band is awesome. Its music is fun, timeless and real. The band can laugh, cry and flip people off all in one album, backed up by talent and experience. Fronted by longtime Tacoma musician Regan Lane (Baby Knockors, Strypes, Groovy Times in Babylon, BrokenNess), take the Beatles and Super Furry Animals sprinkled it with some Bowie, Traveling Wilburys and Elvis Costello and add confessional lyrics ala John Lennon and Bob Dylan and you have the five-piece power pop band Strangely Alright. "We'll perform new material I have written Friday," says Lane, "plus a Weezer-style cover of ‘Imagine,' some New York Dolls and Ramones." Our new single, ‘Come on,' will be released in a few weeks. In fact, we'll be releasing a new single and video every two months this year." Well, all right! Catch the band with SleepyPilot at 9 p.m. in The Swiss Restaurant and Pub.

2. Broadway Center for the Performing Arts presents Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo at 7:30 p.m. in the Pantages Theater. Delicately stuffed into tutus and man-sized toe shoes, the gender bending all-male ballet company returns to deliver hilarious twists on classical ballet. A worldwide phenomenon, the comedy of "The Trocks" is only outmatched by their technical prowess. Performing en pointe, these "mallerinas" revel in buffoonery and antics with perfectly pointed toes and leap to the heavens with attuned choreographic precision.

3. Nena Curley was 14 years old when she performed the role of Sarah, one of the blind girls, in the Lakewood Playhouse 2003 production of The Miracle Worker. Twelve years later, Curley is the stage manager and production manager for the theater company's current production of The Miracle Worker, William Gibson's inspiring 1959 drama about blind, deaf and mute child Helen Keller and teacher Annie Sullivan's extraordinary efforts to communicate with her, which hits the stage at 8 p.m.

4. Weekly Volcano scribe Rev. Adam McKinney has long been in love with the fizzy, cartoonishly bright power pop of the Hoot Hoots. With their driving indie rock, dressed with colorful costumes and embellished with lyrics about robots and dinosaurs, the Hoot Hoots have embodied the height of blissful optimism for him in the Pacific Northwest. Seeing them live is a sweaty, exuberant joy. Read his full feature on The Hoot Hoots in the Music and Culture section., then catch the band with the Jesus Rehab, Fruit Juice and Trees and Timber at 8 p.m. in The New Frontier Lounge.

5. Obsidian in downtown Olympia hosts "Invokation," a night of gothic, industrial, darkwave and electro tunes spun by DJs. Dress to depress for a night of classic bats-and-bondage soundscapes, beginning at 9 p.m. Bela Lugosi's dead - long live Bela Lugosi!

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