Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: October, 2010 (121) Currently Viewing: 81 - 90 of 121

October 19, 2010 at 5:28pm

Tacoma medical marijuana update


Moments ago Weekly Volcano reporter Paul Schrag reported back from the regularly scheduled Tacoma City Council meeting, saying the council just announced it was withdrawing the cease and desist orders served to all Tacoma medical marijuana dispensaries late last week. Apparently, according to the council, they're deferring their decision until spring with the intention of allowing the state legislature to clarify current medical marijuana laws before taking action.

Schrag reports a massive cheer erupted from the crowd, which he estimates at about 300 people - most of whom he says where there to speak out against the shutdown of Tacoma's medical marijuana dispensaries. Originally, based on last week's cease and desist orders from Tacoma's tax and licensing division, Tacoma medical marijuana dispensaries were told they'd be forced to close by Oct. 24.

Stay tuned.

LINK: We broke the cease and desist orders news

LINK: Our medical marijuana feature story

Filed under: City Councils, Tacoma,

October 19, 2010 at 6:59pm

Scenes from the medical marijuana rally in Tacoma


The Tacoma City Council told medical marijuana proponents today that so-called dispensaries would be allowed to stay open as long as their owners filed an official appeal of the cease and desist orders distributed last Friday by the city's Tax and Licensing Department. A crowd numbering at least 200 people erupted into cheers as one dispensary operator stood on a planter outside City Hall and trumpeted the news.

"The Tacoma City Council is not opposed to safe and legal access to medical marijuana for patients with legitimate need," Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland told people gathered in Tacoma City Council Chambers.

City officials said they wouldn't set hearings on those appeals until March or April, presumably with hopes that lawmakers will clarify the state's confusing medical marijuana law during next year's legislative session.  

Activists from as far away as Olympia and Bellingham cheered the decision, and later called for continued diligence as this year's legislative session is sure to include discussions of how to clarify the state's convoluted medical marijuana law.  

October 20, 2010 at 7:09am

Showdown: Third Thursday ArtWalk

Maria Jost's "Street Botany Figure 8"


What's considered chic one week is trashed by the trend setters the next. It's in this blink-and-you-missed-it environment that Tacoma's Third Thursday ArtWalk has become something of an institution. Nothing more than an intermittent and amorphous congregation of people who enjoy original art, the monthly night has managed to snowball into a downtown Tacoma support system for the visual arts.  Or something like that. Here's a primer for tomorrow's ArtWalk, which officially takes place from 5-8 p.m.:

Tacoma Art Museum: We don't yet know what photographs will be in the show Mighty Tacoma: Photographic Portrait 2010, but the title tells us they will reference Tacoma and will be mighty. Billed as an "interactive celebration and creative exercise in commemoration of Tacoma Art Museum's 75th Anniversary," the show will feature digital portraits by Tacoma-based artists that will be projected in the gallery and posted on the museum website. The show will also include a photographic survey of the city's neighborhoods, families at the museum, community groups and businesses. And visitors can add their own pictures to the website using Flickr, Facebook and other Internet networks. A beer garden featuring Harmon's Mighty Tacoma Ale will be mighty fun. 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., 75 cents before 5 p.m., free from 5-8 p.m., 1701 Pacific Ave., 253.272.4258

ART BUS: Tacoma's Little Engine That Could continues to chugs along offering another tour of Third Thursday ArtWalk via a yellow school bus. Pay your $10, jump on the bus at 5 p.m. in front of the Speakeasy Arts Cooperative and tour Embellish Multispace Salon, Brick House, Brownie Morrison, Tacoma Art Supply, Handforth Gallery, 253 Collective, The Swiss Pub and B2 Gallery. Friendships are born. Flasks are passed. And an occasional singalong busts out. 5-9 p.m., $10, 746 Broadway St.

Fulcrum Gallery: The ability to truly see a plant or flower in its utmost detail and then express it visually with creative flair never ceases to amaze us. Tacoma scientist/artist Maria Jost excels at this talent. She's been planting her artistic botany prints around Tacoma for several years. Beginning today, her garden will be Fulcrum. 6-9 p.m., 1308 MLK Way, Tacoma, 253.250.0520

Mineral: Shelf your rough draft plea to Tim Burton begging Mr. Creepy to remake The Wizard of Oz and check out Justin Hillgrove's lighter-side-of-morbid works of art. Hillgrove's phantasmagorical cast of famous writers should satiate your need of all things odd. Yes, J.R.R. Tolkien! 6-9 p.m., 301 Puyallup Ave., Tacoma, 253.250.7745

Mavi Contemporary Art: William Turner shows 15 small scale oil paintings under the title, The Canyon Series. Climb in. 6-9 p.m., 502 Sixth Ave., 253.759.6233

BKB & Company: They have a stash of Halloween candy! Oh, and ceramics by Tom Hatton. And candy! 5-8 p.m., 1734 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, 253.272.6884

Handforth Gallery: The group show BIG: an exploration has been up for a while. It's the show that asks, Why does BIG sometimes seem so small?  Anyhoo, they're busting out an artist reception for the show the night of ArtWalk. 5:30-8 p.m., Tacoma Public Library Main Branch, 1102 Tacoma Ave. S., 253.591.5661

Spaceworks Tacoma: You know it. You love it.

Brick House Gallery: Painter Richard Turner and his son, neon artist Galen McCarty Turner, join up for The Father and Son Show at the Brick House. No word if Galen will jump his bike through the window. The Brick House always has the best food. 5-9 p.m., 1123 S. Fawcett, 253.627.0426

Not so much in downtown ...

Proctor Art Gallery: Last month you learned how to be a psychic. So you already know that the Proctor Art Gallery will teach you how to be an art critic Thursday night. Classical guitarist Jasper Tollefson (awesome name!) will mess with your thoughts. 4-8 p.m., 3811 N. 26th St., Tacoma, 253.759.4238

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

Filed under: Arts, Community, Tacoma,

October 20, 2010 at 7:10am

"THICK" will flow on Tollefson Plaza


Commissioned by Spaceworks Tacoma, choreographer Carla Barragan and BQdanza members will present THICK in Tollefson Plaza Thursday, which just happens to be Third Thursday ArtWalk. A site-specific dance, including poetry from Luke Smiraldo, THICK is a reaction of sorts to the BP oil spill and "mourns the loss of and also celebrates the beauty and grace of birds, sea creatures, micro-organisms and other non-human victims of the region," according to descriptions. Oh yeah! It's all part of Arts Crush! And it all helps TAM celebrate 75 years! And the Mighty Tacoma exhibit opens the same day!


Thursday, Oct. 21, 6 p.m., free
Tollefson Plaza, South 17th and Pacific Avenue, Tacoma

Filed under: Arts, Tacoma,

October 20, 2010 at 7:54am

5 Things To Do Today: Tacoma Holiday Food & Gift Show, juried art show opens, parasite paintings, author Cherie Priest and more ...

WEDNESDAY, OCT. 20, 2010 >>>

1. The Tacoma Dome opens its doors at 11 a.m. so you can buy It's Beginning to Smell a Lot Like Christmas Tree fragrance at the Tacoma Holiday Food & Gift Festival.

2. The Peninsula Art League's eighth annual open juried art show opens today. Drop by the Gig Harbor Civic Center and check out the more than 85 paintings by local and regional artists from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

3. A reception for Keely Willoughby's whimsical parasite paintings will be held from 5-8 p.m. inside the Metropolitan Veterinary Hospital in Tacoma.

4. Author Cherie Priest will discuss her new zombie-ridden alternate history book, Dreadnought, at 7 p.m. inside the Garfield Book Company. This third book of hers follows a Virginia nurse who travels to Seattle when she receives a telegram bringing bad news, and it promises to expand the thrilling Clockwork Century universe into entirely new territory.

5. Your Girlfriend's Favorite DJ spins at Masa's College Night beginning at 10 p.m.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

October 21, 2010 at 12:05am

Farmer in the Fusion

Billy Farmer


Coffeehouse audiences aren't known for their exuberance. At best, the dimly lit textbook folkie with a guitar earns a smattering of applause over the din of cappuccino steam and chatter.

However, at Billy Farmer's famous open mics, chatter isn't allowed.

"I always strive to create the best possible performance atmosphere at the open mics I host. Besides a green room for the artists, I instigate a "quite please" rule while the artists perform.

It's a rule the local guitarist held firm during his year run as host of the Mandolin Café's Sunday night open mic, which he had to recently abandon due to irreconcilable differences.

This Sunday, Farmer is back with a one-time open mic tester at Java Fusion on Sixth Avenue. He invites everyone from open-mike virgins to established artists testing out new material to drop by between 4-8 p.m.

I tossed Farmer a couple questions concerning his open mics.

WEEKLY VOLCANO: What were some of your favorite performances you witnessed during your time at the Mandolin?

BILLY FARMER: Many truly remarkable performances remain in my mind - moments that left the audience in a hush before their roared applause.

Zoe, a freshman at Wilson High School, sang a classical German number with scarce sincerity.  Caleb and Zach, college bound seniors from Lakes High, performed riveting, woven guitar/vocal duets. Doug McCoy, cut cleanly from Gene Autry cloth, timbering a pre-war ballad. Heidi and David, "The Folk Singers In Hell," performed cerebral-satirical originals. James Coates, Mary Farr, Joel Lively, Esera, Cassie, Sky Davenport, Flemming Behrend, Thomas Thornberry Smith, Dave Randall, Val Deveraux - oh, the list goes on and on. ...

VOLCANO: Will you miss your time at the Mandolin?

FARMER: Very much so. There were groups and passers-through, regulars and first timers. ... We had at least two new performers every week for 40 weeks straight. Get this - we had 1309 participants over 40 weeks and over 300 individuals in all. It was an amazingly successful event.

VOLCANO: Besides quiet policy and green room, what other aspects of the Mandolin open mics will you bring to Java Fusion?

FARMER: I will archive the performances for use on my Open Mic Radio show on KUPS. And, of course, it will be all ages.

VOLCANO: The Mandolin rocks the dessert world. What will Java Fusion serve?

FARMER: The specials for the day will be beef stew and mac & cheese plus fresh desserts.

VOLCANO: How are the acoustics inside the Fusion?

FARMER: Sweet!

VOLCANO: This will be a one-time event. If the turn out is good it might lead to more open mics at Java Fusion. The coffee shop is an alcohol-free venue (I said alcohol-free, not free alcohol, so calm down).

Sunday Open Mic

Sunday, Oct. 24, 4-8 p.m., no cover
Java Fusion
6820 Sixth Ave., Tacoma

October 21, 2010 at 7:42am

5 Things To Do Today: Unplugged show, dance films, Dia de los Muertos ...

These people play an unplugged show tonight at the Speakeasy Arts Cooperative.

THURSDAY, OCT. 21, 2010 >>>

1. John Purkey, Heather Lum, Patrick Casson, Pat Watson, Gavin Guss – members of The Spins and Good Gravy – play an unplugged show from 6:30-8:30 p.m. inside the Speakeasy Arts Cooperative.

2. The BareFoot Collective will walk inside the Museum of Glass and screen a bunch of films about dance on the MOG big screen from 5-8 p.m. Expect new dance films from Washington, California, Oregon, New York, New Mexico, France and elsewhere.

3. The 253 Collective gallery will host a Dia de los Muertos celebration from 5-8 p.m. featuring works by artist Lynne Farren and the members of 253 Collective.

4. Community Cinema Tacoma presents the film Reel Injun by Neil Diamond, an entertaining trip through the evolution of North American Native people as portrayed in famous Hollywood Movies - from the silent era to today - at 6 p.m. inside the Washington State History Museum. After the film professors from the University of Puget Sound will dive into your brain.

5. Ten Miles Of Bad Road, Sordid Sentinels, J Mac Cadillac and Menace mosey on in to Hell's Kitchen around 9 p.m.

LINK: It's Tacoma Third Thursday ArtWalk tonight!

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

Filed under: 5 Things To Do, Arts, Screens, Music, Tacoma,

October 21, 2010 at 12:38pm

Buy The View From Here

Jim Oliver's 2010 Calendar cover image "Buick Pair-O-Dice"


Tacoman Jim Oliver is a kick ass photographer. He has captured some amazing scenes of the greater Tacoma area. Check them out here.

Oliver also looks forward to next year.

He has combined his two loves into a cool 2011 calendar - available for purchase at Frame Makers on Sixth Avenue, at the 253 Collective, at The Gallery at Tacoma Community College, and by contacting him here.

To view the calendar, click here.

Enjoy next year.

Filed under: Arts, Business, Tacoma,

October 21, 2010 at 2:44pm

The Weekend Hustle: Rain, rain, go away ...

Run with a bunch of kooks Saturday night at Point Defiance Park.



Friday: Rain and drizzle, hi 60, lo 43

Saturday: Cloudy with a little rain, hi 59, lo 49

Sunday: Strong front moves in and all hell will break loose, hi 54, lo 46


Your Halloween costume (Yang Liwei, China's first astronaut) is ready to go. The pumpkin is carved. The candy is, er, well, you ate it, but you're definitely going to pick up another bag of tiny Snickers bars in the next couple of days. The problem is you're so excited by the prospect of the witchy day that you cannot wait until next week. Lucky for you, Northwest Trek Wildlife Park hosts its HOOT ‘N' HOWL this weekend. There'll be games, tram rides, crafts, spooky stories and the usual animals.  Best of all, you can load up on more candy. 

  • Northwest Trek, 6-10 p.m., $4.50-$12.50, 11610 Trek Dr. E., Eatonville, 360.832.6117


For some, running can be an excruciating experience. To many others, it's what they live for. But however you feel about running, there's no doubt the experience can be improved by the donning of a ghoulish costume or vampire teeth and a cape. Enter the Black Cat Five-Mile Fun Run, a family-friendly jaunt through Point Defiance Park set to go down at dusk this Saturday. Organized by Metro Parks Tacoma, the event caters to runners and walkers of all levels, and the registration fee gets you free glow sticks, black fleece running gloves and hot cocoa, tea or coffee at the finish line ... or water if you're, like, a really hardcore runner and stuff.

  • Point Defiance Park Five Mile Drive, 5:30 p.m., check in 4:30 p.m., $25 until midnight tonight, $35 day of race, 5400 N. Pearl, Tacoma


Used books reign supreme over new books because there's something to be said for encountering a chocolate stain, a teardrop or a snot smear on random pages, reminding you that you're holding something someone enjoyed before you. Used books are things with histories. At the Lakewood Library's Freinds' Book Sale you can unleash your fetish for used books with wild abandon. Tens of thousands of books will be on sale, not to mention CDs, cassettes and DVDs. Knowledge has become ridiculously cheap and accessible. Take advantage.

  • Lakewood Library, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 6300 Wildaire Road SW, Lakewood, 253.582.6040


This Anglo never could get his hips to salsa. I tried. My college girlfriend - Angela de Sosa - was from El Salvador. She wore size-3 Jordache jeans when we hit the disco scene (the early ‘80s thing to do). The music would play, and de Sosa's hips would sway. She tried to show me how.  De Sosa left me for a better dancer. I took up writing. Every Saturday night at the Abbey Ballroom in downtown Tacoma there's a Latin dance featuring salsa, bachata, cha cha, merengue, and the occasional rumba. I will not be there.

  • The Abby Ballroom, 9 p.m., all ages, $5, 1901 Fawcett Ave., Tacoma, 253.572.5424


MATT DRISCOLL Editor and String Cheese Addict (not the band!)
Again, the South Sound has quite a weekend in store. There's a whole crapload (maybe two) of things to choose from, and making decisions wont be easy. The best thing to do is simply be decisive, and turn whatever choice you make into the right one by going all-out and not looking back.

While I have yet to follow that advice, and my weekend is still up in the air, I would really like to make it to The Grand for part of the Race & Pedagogy Film Series, which is a precursor to next week's Race & Pedagogy National Conference at the University of Puget Sound.

That, and I've really been craving a BBC from MSM Deli the last couple days, so I'll probably have one of those this weekend too.

So, to summarize my weekend will include: race, pedagogy, beef, cheese and bacon.

PAUL SCHRAG Senior Contributor
I'll be tearing around Olympia with Eprhyme, who will release his second album on K Records sometime next year, shooting photos to accompany a video celebrating Olympia's unique culture. I'll probably end up in a garage with E and Smoke of Oldominion, and hopefully get a chance to molest fellow Volcano scribe Owen Taylor. 

This weekend is all leading up to Saturday, when I will be attending a show at my friend's venue, Hilltop Hollows. Until then, I will be helping with doing some renovating of the venue to get it goo and ready. Boy, I hope the cops don't show up.

NIKKI TALOTTA Features Writer
After my usual two days of mix mastering at the bar, I'm going on a date with my husband. We have some fun things on the menu, but due to discretionary promises, I am not allowed to disclose to readers exactly what we are up to. But, go ahead, use your imagination.

JOE IZENMAN Music/Theater Critic
Either having a poker night, playing a show at Cork! Wine Bar, getting engagement photos at Wright Park, catching It's Kind Of A Funny Story at The Grand, and learning to cook Indian food; or continuing to be ill and staying inside feeling gross all weekend. Both are viable options.

KRIS BLONDIN Food/Wine Writer
I'm boring. We WERE going to Westport, but husband has to work. At
least I have a new furnace, heat and really big bottle of vodka. Call

JENNIFER JOHNSON: Lifestyle/Leisure Writer
Friday I will be going to 1022 Fall and Winter Menu Debut Party at 6 p.m. Saturday I will be running 5 miles and then catching a session at Hot Yoga Tacoma. That night I will bid farewell to the Robert Daniel Gallery at "Out With A Bang" at 9 pm. Sunday hopefully will bring a relaxing day and a walk through gorgeous fall leaves (no rain!). 

JOANN VARNELL Theater Critic
I'll be heading to the Tacoma Little Theatre to review eleemosynary, lamenting the absence of dairy from my diet and preparing for a week in Mexico with the infant, husband and in-laws.

After a full day at Olympia High School for an upcoming feature, I'll be free to enjoy Harvey at OLT and The Art of Dining at my new alma mater.  Better and boobier yet, I'll be venturing Through the Looking Glass, aka Burlesque Alice in Wonderland, at the Capitol Theater.

STEVE DUNKELBERGER Meat Market Correspondent
I’m going to be all about music this weekend when Tacoma Youth Chorus hosts a free parent appreciation concert at Charles Wright Academy at 4 p.m. on Saturday. Later that night brings Tacoma Symphony Orchestra’s season opener, Gershwin and Guitar, featuring Ana Vidovic. She is featured in "Rodrigo's Concierto de Aranjuez." The show also will include Aaron Copland's "Billy the Kid" and George Gershwin's "An American in Paris."

ALEC CLAYTON: Visual Arts Critic
 The play's the thing. Going to see Harvey at Olympia Little Theater and eleemosynary at Tacoma Little Theatre.

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

October 22, 2010 at 7:58am

5 Things To Do Today: Race and Pedagogy Film Series, YWCA shelter party, spooky dancers ...

"Bilal's Stand" screens twice today at The Grand Cinema.

FRIDAY, OCT. 22, 2010 >>>

1. At the end of the month, the University of Puget Sound welcomes the Race and Pedagogy National Conference, which be centered on the theme "Teaching and Learning for Justice: Danger and Opportunity in Our Critical Moment." In conjunction with the conference, The Grand Cinema will kick off their Race and Pedagogy Film Series today running through Oct. 28, a week of films investigating questions of race and education - with facilitated public discussions after most screenings. At 4 and 6 p.m. catch the film Bilal's Stand, the story of a high school senior in Detroit who wins a scholarship to college and must decide whether he will continue in his family's long-owned taxi stand, or take a chance at social mobility.

2. Celebrate the YWCA Pierce County's "Room to Dream" Shelter Showcase from 2-7 p.m. at The Wilsonian, 401 St. Helens. More than 30 interior designers helped outfit the apartments for this new domestic violence shelter.

3. The Tacoma City Ballet hosts its annual production of The Haunted Theatre - a show featuring a spooky backstage tour of the historic Merlino Arts Building and themed Eerie Dances by the TCB company - at 7 p.m. in said building at 508 Sixth Ave. There'll be treats!

4. The Kim Archer Band and the Stacy Jones Band will fill Jazzbones with R&B and blues beginning at 9 p.m.

5. The Dirty Change Up and The Dignitaries rock The New Frontier Lounge beginning at 9:30 p.m.

LINK: More events in our Weekend Hustle

LINK: New movies open today

LINK: More arts and entertainment events in the South Sound

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