Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: January, 2013 (148) Currently Viewing: 41 - 50 of 148

January 9, 2013 at 1:33pm

Tacoma is “gayest city in America,” says Advocate

A scene from Pride Day 2011 in Tacoma.


Using a highly scientific formula that considers factors including gay rugby, "fabulous shopping" and roller derby teams (uh, no, really), the Advocate magazine released its annual list of the "Gayest Cities in America."

Tacoma was named as America's gayest city for 2013.

Yes, Tacoma has been named the "gayest city in America" by the Advocate, which knows from gay. Here's writer Matthew Breen's rationale in calling us out:

Book a charming B&B, dine at the gay-owned Pacific Grill (PacificGrillTacoma.com), and dance the night away at The Mix (TheMixTacoma.com), and you've got a great recipe for a Northwest honeymoon. The center of LGBT life in Tacoma is the St. Helens District, where the nightlife is plentiful, with some venues rivaling nearby Seattle's. When the indoor fun is done, the environs offer stunning forests and oceans in fairy-tale settings. Consider visiting in July, when the weather is great and Tacoma celebrates pride at Out in the Park (OutInTacoma.com).

As a side story, Gordon Nacarrato, the "out executive chef of one of Tacoma's best restaurants," aka Pacific Grill, receives an extra spotlight with an interview titled What Makes Tacoma Rock. Nacarrato gives a shout out to the city's arts organizations.

So, Tacoma, roll down the windows in your Prius, blast Lady Gaga and flock to The Mix to celebrate the city's victory!

Filed under: News To Us, Gay Rights, Tacoma,

January 9, 2013 at 2:48pm

Sound Sandwiches: The Swiss Dip

SWISS DIP: Dip it!


It seems almost a "cheat" to review a French dip sandwich when discussing the best sandwiches in the South Sound. After all, isn't the sandwich simply meat and bread dipped in drippings?

This is my column. I can do whatever I please (ha Pappi Swarner!). Besides, The Swiss serves an excellent version.

Nearly every pub adds its own spin on the traditional French dip, which usually means changing the word "French" to the name of the bar. The Swiss follows suit. 

The Swiss stacks thick roast beef, grilled green peppers and onions, Swiss cheese (duh) between herbed roll halves.  And, naturally, it's called the Swiss Dip. 

That's tasty alone.

Here's where the Swiss Dip reaches dip dominance: the sandwich is served with the best au jus I've ever tasted. This is not your watered-down version made with powdered flavoring. The Swiss' au jus — rich and dark — bursts with flavor. I soaked the hell out of the sandwich. I searched for a syringe to suck up its awesomeness for a midnight treat.


Partner this with fries, salad or tots, add a beer and you cannot go wrong.

By the way, The Swiss has done nearly the same transformation with its Rueben.


LINK: Kareem Kandi hosts a jazz jam tonight at The Swiss

LINK: MSM Deli's Mike's Deluxe

LINK: Antique Sandwich Company's turkey sandwich

LINK: Meconi's Hot Italian Sub



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January 9, 2013 at 7:55pm

CONTEST: Artwork needed for Tacoma agritourism event

CHERYL THE PIG LADY: She's in. Photo credit: cherylthepiglady.com


Dirty Oscar's Annex, Primo Grill and Hotel Murano have teamed up with Pierce County farms Zestful Gardens, Terry's Berries and Cheryl the Pig Lady in an agritourism partnership that will produce events beginning in 2013. The partnership intends to take the "far" out of farms, producing farm to table events celebrating regional cuisine - from the land and in the kitchen - with an educational focus on issues of sustainability in food production and distribution.

The partnership is looking for help with branding. The partnership asks artists to submit a logo design for its vision, including naming the union. The chosen design will be featured on promotional materials such as event posters and T-shirts. The chosen artwork will be featured in many various forms of media for the event. Please note that, although the partnership will strive to preserve the integrity of the submitted design, the artwork may be slightly altered to suit different media. The winning designer should be able to provide an Adobe Illustrator EPS file (with fonts converted to objects or outlines). An Adobe Photoshop PSD (don't flatten layers) is also acceptable, but EPS is preferred.

The partnership, which you will name, will judge the artwork. The winning artist will be showered with gifts from the restaurants and farms.

Deadline for submission is 5 p.m. Friday, Feb. 1, 2013. Submit information to Agritourism Partnership, c/o, Weekly Volcano, PO Box 98801, Lakewood, WA 98496 or via email at feedback@weeklyvolcano.com. Chosen artist will be notified via email.

January 10, 2013 at 6:20am

5 Things To Do Today: Poet Casey Rocheteau, OlyBlues, Tacoma Public Schools and more ...

CASEY ROCHETEAU: She'll tell you how it is.

THURSDAY, JAN. 10 2013 >>>

1. Poet Casey Rocheteau was one of the leaders of the Hampshire Slam Collective from 2004-2007, during which she was a member of the first Hampshire/Five College teams at the College Union Poetry Slam Invitational. Theatrical and totally "in the moment," her performance poetry shakes up the whole infrastructure of the dowdy old poetry world. Rocheteau is a fierce, lyrical acrobat. Catch her at 7 p.m. inside Orca Books in Olympia.

2. Currently at Pacific Lutheran University's Mortvedt Library is "Pressing On," an exhibition to celebrate 30 years of the existence of the Elliott Press. The exhibition consists of broadsides (hand-printed posters), hand-made books and other printed pieces by students who learn and work at the Elliott Press. Pieces include work by Oregon writer Kim Stafford and Copper Canyon Press founder Tree Swenson - both alumni of the Press, along with many other illustrious local artists, writers and editors. Check it out from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

3. Parents and Friends for Tacoma Public Schools - a community group dedicated to strengthening the public education system - will host a representative from Tacoma Public Schools Finance Department at 6:30 p.m. inside King's Books. One topic to be covered will be the benefits of passing the school bond next month.

4. The Oly Mountain Boys are stomping their way into the Yew Year. With nine shows booked in the South Sound over the next two months, the bluegrass masters hit The Spar Cafe in downtown Olympia around 8 p.m. The five piece uses all the bluegrass faves - harmonious vocals, mandolin, guitar, banjo, fiddle and bass - to hone a sound that's their own. Plus, they know how to dress. Have you seen the hats they wear?

5. Swing dancing's Africanist cousin, blues dancing, hits the Olympia Eagles Ballroom in the form of OlyBlues every Thursday at 9 p.m. Blues dancing derives from the so-called "Black vernacular" of Southern dance styles and includes such moves as the Lindy and the irresistibly named "Funky Butt." Worst-case scenario: you have two left feet but get to listen to Nina Simone.

LINK: Thursday, Jan. 10 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

January 10, 2013 at 7:16am

Dim sum coming to Lacey

OMG! >>>

Pattaya Thai Cuisine and Sushi Bar is a tasty Thai hotspot in Lacey, headed up by Chef Ron B. In mid-February Chef Ron will deliver a new dose of deliciousness to the area, in the form of authentic, Hong Kong-style dim sum at a brand new restaurant called YumCha.

Dim sum is a Chinese dish of small, often bite-sized steamed dumplings and foods served in cylindrical steamer baskets. In Cantonese, Yum Cha translates to "drink tea," since many Chinese people snack on dim sum as they drink their afternoon tea.

"There's no dim sum restaurant from Portland to Seattle, so we have people who are asking for it," says Chef Ron. "So now people don't have to travel so far to have great dim sum."

Chef Ron B. is bringing in two chefs straight from Hong Kong to head up the menu at YumCha, meaning Oly residents and visitors can expect authentic cuisine. He says the restaurant will be toward the upscale end of the spectrum with a modern atmosphere. He expects the restaurant will open around Feb. 11 - just in time for you to take your sweetie out for some steamed delicacies.


Filed under: Food & Drink, Lacey,

January 10, 2013 at 9:00am

SOTA grad artist Kaitlyn Lloyd works on cars

LLOYD AND WILSON AUTO SERVICE: Enjoy Kaitlyn Lloyd's mural while your oil is changed.


Tacoma loves its murals. It's mural crazy. Sometimes mural show up where you wouldn't expect them - an auto shop, for example. Lloyd & Wilson Auto Service at 631 S. Baker St. has a new mural in its lobby courtesy of up-and-coming Tacoma artist Kaitlyn Lloyd.

Lloyd's family has serviced its cars at the auto shop for years. So when the shop called, Kaitlyn assumed something was wrong with her car. Instead, the auto shop wanted her to paint a mural - her first mural.

"They let me have pretty much free range on this mural and were very receptive to any ideas I had," she says. "I used acrylic paints, since it is an inside painting I thought this would be the best medium to use. It is also fast drying which is great. Nothing like sitting and watching paint dry."

From a young age, Lloyd realized her passion for the arts, which she honed at School of the Arts from 2006 until graduation in 2009. SOTA is a unique branch of the Tacoma Public School system. Located right downtown, the school integrates young artists with the community, from local art shows to requiring students to physically venture out by walking between buildings.

"I learned how to look at art in a different way which helped me develop an appreciation for the process of art through others' hands," says Lloyd. "The School of The Arts shaped me into the artist I am today. I'm forever grateful for those teachers who were always there for me who never gave up because they saw my potential."

Someday, Lloyd hopes to be an art teacher for children, or perhaps an art therapist. Currently, she works at Uncorked Canvas teaching 6- to 80-year-olds how to paint.

Lloyd would love to do more murals and is open to commissioned pieces. She can be reached at klloyd.internship09@gmail.com.

Filed under: Arts, Tacoma,

January 10, 2013 at 11:10am

ISSUE NO. 583: Comedian Kyle Kinane, Unwound is back, Tacoma beer taste test, Fresh Blends returns and more ...

THE WEEK OF JAN. 10-16, 2013 >>>

In this week's issue of the Weekly Volcano ...

"When you eat pancakes out of a bag in a semi-public place, there are rules," says comedian Kyle Kinane midway through an eight-minute story about watching a man on an airplane eat pancakes out of a grocery bag. You or I might see such a sight and, upon reporting it to our friends later, the extent of our story might be just, "Pretty weird, right?" But that's not how Kyle Kinane operates. Rev. Adam McKinney interviews Kinane before his three-day run at the Tacoma Comedy Club.

Imagine it's the early '90s. You are young, have an ear for music and love going to and recording shows. You hang on the scene long enough to make friends, start selling merch and next thing you know, you're at roadie status. Fast forward to 2001, after working with the Melvins - and on the road with Kill Rock Stars band xbxrx - tours collide with a group that asks you to come along on its next tour. Little do you know that you'll be driving a tour that will take you through the East Coast as the Pentagon is still smoldering from 9/11, that you will be accompanying a band that has been strong for the last 10 years, on its final tour, and that the music you record along the way will be compiled and released 10 years later in limited edition vinyl and unlimited digital downloads. If this scenario happened to you, you'd be Mike Ziegler.

Approaching its 125th year is an exciting time for all involved with the University of Puget Sound. Its web page boasts memories in pictures and words, including sporting events, kayaking trips and even tent camping in the library, where one student was highly dedicated to study for finals. For UPS president Ronald R. Thomas, 2013 also marks his 10-year anniversary of overseeing the university. Like students and staff, Thomas also has fond memories of time spent on campus.

Now that the holiday season has passed, many winter brews are exiting through a secret side door not to be seen again until next year when pinecone wreaths adorn our doors and Christmas lights dazzle from every window pane. It's not too late to get your lips around a pint or two of dark, delicious, roasted brews.Jackie Fender and two local beer experts taste several winter beers brewed in the area.

The original Fresh Blends was at Hell's Kitchen on Sixth Avenue. The night lasted one year and it brought down some of the best Seattle hip-hop to perform in Tacoma. The Fresh Blends stage housed the SportinLife roster and artists such as Xperience. Weekly Volcano columnist Josh Rizeberg says Fresh Blends has returned to Tacoma.

The "Greek and Roman Mythology" exhibition at Tacoma Community College is outstanding. The operative word is strength - depicted strength of character, purpose and ideology; beauty and strength in the human body, and strong drawing and composition. There is also a lot of humor and wisdom in the way these contemporary South Sound artists react to ancient myths. Read Alec Clayton's review of the show here.

LINK: The Broadway Center staff tell Neil Berg his business

LINK: Music critics' picks of the week

January 11, 2013 at 6:36am

5 Things To Do Today: "100 Years of Broadway," Oly Rocks Sandy, Amocat Live, "Greek and Roman Mythology" reception and more ...

"SATURN DEVOURING HIS SON": Grab a glass of wine and discuss Ric Hall and Ron Schmidt's interpretation of Francisco Goya from 4-7 p.m. at TCC. Courtesy photo

FRIDAY, JAN. 11 2013 >>>

1. Weekly Volcano art critic Alec Clayton says the "Greek and Roman Mythology" exhibition at Tacoma Community College is outstanding. The operative word is strength - depicted strength of character, purpose and ideology; beauty and strength in the human body, and strong drawing and composition. There is also a lot of humor and wisdom in the way these contemporary South Sound artists react to ancient myths. The artists reception will be from 4-7 p.m.

2. Jeannine Hall Gailey, poet laureate of Redmond, will anchor at 7 p.m. Distinguished Writer Series night at King's Books. Besides penning Becoming the Villainess (Steel Toe Books, 2006) and She Returns to the Floating World (Kistune Books, 2011) Gailey has appeared in American Poetry Review, The Iowa Review and Prairie Schooner. After Gailey's reading, there will be an open mic for local, courageous poets. Sign up is at 6:45 p.m. and all are welcome.

3. Another Amocat Live singer-songwriter concert consumes the Amocat Cafe at 7 p.m., this version featuring the musical talents of John Saunders, Bjorn Parker, Jeremy Bush, Mitchell James, Dave Hannon and house band, the Collaborators. Those in the know will arrive at 5 p.m. for Tacoma Brewing Company brews.

4. The Oly Rocks Sandy! Benefit concertfeaturing The Dave BenSam Trio, The Oly Mountain Boys and The Tune Stranglers will be held at 7 p.m. inside The Royal Lounge. Proceeds will go to New Jersey Strong, a charity helping Hurricane Sandy victims rebuild.

5. Broadway nerds are in for a treat Friday. Neil Berg's 100 Years of Broadway Song & Dance will consume the Pantages Theater's stage at 7:30 p.m. with songs from hit musicals through the past century. Four veteran Broadway stars and an equally all-star New York band will perform some of the most well-known tunes and choreography from heavy hitters like The Phantom of the Opera, Les Misérables, CATS and Chicago. Read Kristin Kendle's preview of the show here.

LINK: Friday, Jan. 11 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

January 11, 2013 at 10:01am

WEEKEND HUSTLE: Writing on Writing, "Children's Hour" opens, Demon Dogs, Pamela Reed and more ...

JERRY ZIEGLER Voted Best Olympian in 20011 and one helluva drummer. Photo credit: Devon True



Friday: Foggy morning followed by party sunny, hi 37, lo 26

Saturday: Cloudy and cold, hi 37, lo 25

Sunday: Partly sunny and cold, hi 35, lo 22


Have you almost completed that novel? Or has it been done for a while, tucked in a file, waiting the next step? Or maybe you just want to learn more about writing and publishing. Take advantage of Olympia Timberland Library's Writers on Writing event Friday. Geared toward adults and teens, the presentation will highlight local authors of young adult novels, Megan Bostic, Helen Landalf, Kim Derting,and Jennifer Shaw Wolf. In a panel presentation the authors will talk about their novels, the writing process and their path to publication. - Nikki McCoy

  • Timberland Regional Libraryn, 6:30 p.m., free, 313 Eighth Ave. SE, Olympia, 360.352.0595


In Kindergarten Cop, Hollywood's Lord of the Abs Ah-nold Schwarzenegger played a typical '80s movie super cop turned dedicated educator of precocious scamps - including a tumor-forewarning death-obsessive and a genitalia expert. Between the opening and closing credits, detective John Kimble saved a school and a family from a ponytailed drug dealer, and ffell in love with a woman and a new profession. But what happened to Kimble's partner Phoebe O'Hara? She got food poisoning, groaned through most of the movie, saved the day then delivered the best one-liner of the flick, "You're not so tough without your car, are you?" Did O'Hara remain a detective? Did she ever marry the guy in the girly robe? You can ask her Friday, or rather the actress that played her, Pamela Reed. The Tacoma native will host a screening of Kindergarten Cop to raise funds for a full acoustic upgrade to the Blue Mouse Theatre's auditorium.

  • Blue Mouse Theatre, 7 p.m.,2611 N. Proctor, Tacoma, 253.752.9500


Wrist Magazine provides an outlet for the literary minds of Tacoma, for self-expression and for writers to seek true connection to the masses. Friday night, the magazine will host its first ever literary event, which will take place at Metronome Coffee. Readers will include Nick Stokes, Melissa Thayer, Vince Genna, Darryl Small - local actor in the film Rockabye Deadman that premiered late last year at Washington State History Museum - Titus Burley and Weekly Volcano's own Joshua Swainston. — Kristin Kendle

Metronome Coffee, 7 p.m., no cover, 3518 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.301.2375


In an age of increased physical, mental and now cyber bullying, sometimes leading to extreme consequences, Lakewood Playhouse's presentation of The Children's Hour comes at an apropos time in society. When a malicious youngster starts a rumor about two women teachers who run a school for girls, things get beyond the realm of control as the girl sticks by her story, causing tragedy for everyone involved. This four-weekend run opens Friday night. PARENTAL ADVISORY: This production contains mature themes including: discussion of bullying, homosexuality and suicide. Parental discretion is strongly suggested. — NM

  • Lakewood Playhouse, through Feb. 3, 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday, $18-$24, 5729 Lakewood Towne Center Blvd. SW,  Lakewood, 253.588.0042


The back bar at McCoy's will surely be busy this Saturday as every leather clad, gravelly-voiced, long-haired or bald-headed hesher in Olympia will be scrunched near the stage - spilling bears and throwing horns - to witness thrash metal legends Coven and old school metal lords Demon Dogs rage the night away. John Boyce, bartender, booker and sound guy at McCoy's, talks about the last time Demon Dogs played, "It was awesome, just crazy energy - they're ferocious." And about Demon Dog's infamous drummer Jerry Ziegler Boyce states, "It's the most demanding thing I've seen him do." If you've ever seen Ziegler in action, then you know Boyce's words hold weight, and you'll be there Saturday night. - NM

  • McCoy's, 9 p.m., $4, 418 Fourth Ave, Olympia, 360.352.0696


I'm seeing The Children's Hour at Lakewood Playhouse and helping out with a directors' Q&A. I'd also like to catch Zero Dark Thirty to complete my Oscar movie assault.

With any luck, I'll make it out to the Tacoma Comedy Club to see Kyle Kinane. No joke, guys. He's super funny.

I'm going to see The Children's Hour at Lakewood Playhouse. Sunday, I'll be watching the Seahawks game before going to a PFLAG meeting.

NIKKI MCCOY Feature Writer
Making happy hour even happier is my goal today, by garnishing every drink with a sprinkle of magical love dust (just my way of putting forth good vibes, it's not roofies). Saturday is Full Moon Radio, The Hard Way and Glass Elevator at the 4th Ave Tav. where they will garnish every song with a sprinkle of magical love dust. I'm just feeling the love this weekend. Sunday, every 12th man in town is going to spread the love, too. Go Hawks!

I am losing my mind. Also playing in Porland, Olympia and Seattle all in
three days over the weekend.

I'll b seeing The Children's Hour at Lakewood Plyahouse. Sometime this weekend I'll catch the flick Lincoln. In between, I'll be working on my book, Legendary Locals of Lakewood.

ROCKFORD ROWLEY All-Ages Music Columnist
Saturday night I'm following Tacoma band THE FAME RIOT up to Seattle, as they have a show at The Crocodile opening for Ben Union. If you read my article about THE FAME RIOT, you know this will be a worthwhile show. And though the venue is outside our beloved Tacoma music community, the performers are Tacoma bands through and through.

LINK: Even more local events that we recommend

LINK: Comprehensive South Sound Arts & Entertainment Calendar

January 11, 2013 at 1:25pm

WEEKEND HIP-HOP: A.K.A. and Seahawks vs. Graffiti Garages

A.K.A.: he's worth the drive to Seattle.


This looks like one of those weekends where there are not that many hip-hop shows in Tacoma. That said, Tacoma artists are plenty busy performing in the surrounding areas. So, gas-up yo ride, fill-it-up with yo best-friends and party-favors, and hit the road!

Friday, ya can catch A.K.A. (A King Also) at the White Rabbit in Seattle's Freemont neighborhood. Get there early, it is only $5 before 11 p.m., then it is $6 after. Still, not too expensive.  A King Also is fresh off his newest release on Itchy Records. The album seems to be getting him some props, which he has worked hard to get. His newest video on YouTube, "Dream Big" is a good example of his work. He has an everyday man's flow and vibe that a lot of people can relate too. However, he knows how to throw in just enough confidence in his rhymes to make it interesting.

Here's a heads-up about the Graffiti Garages on Sunday, which usually goes down at 1 p.m. As long as there is a Seahawks game on, then this event probably will get canceled. I have heard rumors that DJ Iceman invites people over to his home to watch the game and/or freestyle and battle. So, check the Graffiti Garage Cipher event page on Facebook to find out if Iceman's house is going on.

Have a fun weekend, PEACE!

LINK: Fresh Blends is back in Tacoma!

Filed under: Music, Tacoma,

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