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McMenamins reopens The Spar

It isn’t often that the newest brewpub in the South Sound is also one of its oldest, but that’s the case these days. Months after Alan McWain sold the landmark Spar Cafe, a 71-year-old Olympia hangout and meeting mainstay to the Portland-based McMenamins, the place is set to hold a grand

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JD's Wild West Saloon

From my college-days experiments and a tour through JD’s Wild West Saloon MySpace page I knew that many people at this place, especially the women, espouse a morally casual attitude worthy of further research. In the former Silver Dollar Casino location, JD’s houses DJ Omar spinning Top 40, hip-hop and

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Original Roadhouse Grill opens

The latest location for the Original Roadhouse Grill is a killer. It's in the Federal Way retail bottleneck, at the back of some plaza that sits like a box canyon; shoppers, diners, and moviegoers alike all funnel into this zone off 320th and Highway 99, half blind from wholesale excess,

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Myshkin's Ruby Warble

Anyone who pushes the boundaries while successfully creating her own distinctive sound is all right in my book — and the weirder the better. Self-described as dark jazz roots music, Myshkin is one artist who gets a high recommendation from me.  With a moody timbre, the New Orleans native draws

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My own private T-town

You know it’s a good start to the week when you get to kick it into gear with an exclusive event. Last Monday was the Doyle’s holiday employee appreciation party, and everyone’s favorite Doyle’s ambassador, Russ, was kind enough to take me as his date. However, I do realize that he’s

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Emotional Attachments

Evan Purcell’s new CD, Attachments, was scheduled to be released last month at Shakabrah Java, but alas, it was not meant to be. Tacoma’s longtime favorite acoustic music venue decided to be a little less shaka and a little more java and cancelled all of its music performances. But Sixth

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Cassettes in the house

Usually, when I write about house parties, I’m not talking about music and there’s a member of Top Heavy Crush involved. Usually, when I write about house parties, it’s something about who diddled who in the hot tub, who showed up with herbal jazz cigarettes, and who drank so much

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Blackberry Bushes, Ian Jones and the Jones Family Fortune and Cassandra Robertson

blackberry bushes In Olympia, girls like to do things their way. Since the early ’90s punk rock girls and Washington’s state capital have walked hand in hand down the independent music highway. But the self-reliant female energy from punk music radiated into other things. In 2004, three friends noted that in

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Hip-hop from the heart

His mother was supposedly rushed out of a James Brown concert to give birth to him. That could be why, in one of his poems, Saul Williams says, “At that concert he sang, ‘Say it loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud,’ and that shit came out in my bloodstream.” On

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Hot Dog!

If the lines at the mall, heightened traffic, and irritating jingles aren’t driving you up a wall, well then, with patience like yours, you should consider teaching in a public school. But if, like the rest of the world, you’re starting to feel the holiday season taking its toll, treat

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King and you

Ahhh, books. So calming. Even when there are thousands of them. So get mellow today during King’s Books Holiday Book Party & Fund Raiser. Actually, don’t be mellow.  Party! With eats, holiday games, some kind of drinkies, reading, and holiday catalog books slashed 20 percent off (catalogs, ya dig?), the

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Korean made easy

ANNOUNCER: For most of us, Korean cuisine can be difficult to like. First of all, it is the cuisine that gave the world kimchi — the notoriously stinky, fermented cabbage that is an essential part of any Korean meal and an acquired taste at best. Then there is the fact

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Brickyard's Mai Tai

In our post-Ziggy Stardust age, when chicks sport racing stripes and dudes don kilts, when even real men know from microdermabrasion and real women from drill bits, cocktails are one of the last clear markers of gender in America. Guys still balk at the coy fruit gals still gravitate toward

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Mazatlan Restaurant

One recent blustery night, suffering from my second cold of the season but feeling like I was coughing up bird feathers and had become the first North American victim of the bird flu pandemic, I grabbed GQ Tony and Head For Numbers to test out this new proverb: “Drink a

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Noshing and sipping

Masa first peek After Monday night’s grand opening, I can say one thing for sure: Masa es mi casa. This traditional Mexican restaurant, the second venture for the proprietors of Asado, served up muy especial mojitos and margaritas. The nachordinary starter came with a delectable bean puree. The potato and chorizo tacos

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Food news

Pasta Mania Has Harmon Brewery lost its noodle?  Who cares?  Every Tuesday the Harmon offers all you can eat pasta all day.  Pop in for lunch, drop $9.95 for the pasta dish, come back for dinner and eat pasta for free.  The pasta dish changes every Thursday. [Harmon Brewery & Restaurant, 1938

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Wednesday

ACOUSTIC/FOLK/CELTIC Caffe Adamo Puyallup. Open Mic Night, AA, 7 pm. Dawson’s Tavern Tacoma. Open mic 9 pm. Farrelli’s Pizza Parkland. Open mic, with Aaron Bigler 9 pm. Hannah’s Olympia. Open mic 9 pm. NC. Malarkey’s

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Tuesday

ACOUSTIC/FOLK/CELTIC Antique Sandwich Co. Ruston. Open mic 7 pm. Farrelli’s Pizza Parkland. Open mic, with Aaron Bigler 9 pm. NC. Mandolin Café Tacoma. Dave Randal, AA, 7 pm. Pierce College Puyallup. Centrevol, AA, 12 pm. NC.

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