THIS WEEK'S BEST FREEBIES OCT. 3-9 >>>
Rent is due on Monday, which means unless you're some type of money-saving wizard, you're probably a little short on cash this week. Don't worry, though: There is a ton of stuff to do this coming week for free, including Broadway Center's Fall Free For All community arts festival, which all on its own can take up your entire weekend. But if you're not into giant puppets and Vaud Rats, there's plenty to choose from this coming week.
MONDAY 10-3: Saxophonist Steve Munger and his quartet fill Olympia's Royal Lounge with soulful jazz every Monday from 7-9 p.m. without a cover charge.
TUESDAY 10-4 It's honestly not every day that an award-winning writer the likes of Sherman Alexie comes to Puyallup. It's not even every-other day. But Tuesday, as part of Banned Books Week, Alexie will appear at the Pioneer Park Pavilion in P-town, delivering a free talk focused on issues of censorship and intellectual freedom. Alexie's acclaimed novel, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, has been widely censored for it content - just one of many truths that makes Alexie's inclusion in this event so fitting. The event seats only 400, so those interested in attending are advised to arrive early.
WEDNESDAY 10-5: J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings is an indisputable classic of English literature. It's also freakin' 1,240 pages long, depending on the edition. Who the hell has time to read that many pages? Dr. John West had time. He'll be speaking and leading a discussion of the spiritual meaning of this book at 7 p.m. as part of a free Wednesday series on "Great Truths from the Great Books" in the South Chapel of First Presbyterian Church of Tacoma. Dr. West is editor of Celebrating Middle-Earth: The Lord of the Rings as a Defense of Western Civilization. He has some idea what he's discussing. Plan to be awake when he utters this line: "I will serve the master of the Precious. Good master, good Sméagol, gollum, gollum!' Suddenly he began to weep and bite at his ankle again." Just remember: Frodo lives!
THURSDAY 10-6: While environmental groups often get stereotyped as elitist, Prius driving, granola munching, tree hugging, sandal wearing wackos, it's a misconception that could use debunking. Especially these days, environmentalists are everywhere and are everyone - and thank goodness for it. Somebody has to look out for Mother Earth. If you need proof that environmentalists are just like you and me, consider this: Environmentalists like to drink. It's true. Not only do they like to drink, but also in Tacoma they get together and do it regularly. It's called Tacoma Green Drinks, and the group meets Thursday at 5:30 p.m. inside the Harmon Brewery and Eatery to hear the latest from the Puget Creek Restoration Society. Admission is free. You're totally invited - unless you insist on driving that 1974 Plymouth Duster. Tacoma Green Drinks suggest you take the bus or ride a bike.
FRIDAY 10-7: Beginning at noon, Downtown On the Go hosts it second free Tacoma fall walking tour of the season, this time flooding your eyes and noggin with all that is the Brewery District. Tacoma City Councilman and architect David Boe will discuss the rich architectural history of this area. This hour-long walk starts in front of the Swiss Building. No RSVP is necessary.
SATURDAY 10-8: Holy shit! Tacoma's Broadway Center will stages 75 performances and musical acts over two days for free under the umbrella title "Fall Free for All." And the acts are solid, quality performance, and not some grandma performing hand shadow puppetry while grandpa bangs on a coffee can. Nope. We're talking Professor Humbug's Flea Circus, Fab-5 break dancing, folkie Laura Gibson, Portland Cello project, YES YOU MAY show, Drew Grow & The Pastors' Wives, Tacoma Round featuring Noah Gunderson, Kris Doty and Nick Principe, Concours d'Elegance and many more musical acts, theater performance, lectures and films. Check out the schedule here. And reserve your free wristband here.
SUNDAY 10-9: Tain't nothing like a gallon or so of fresh cider to clear the constitution. The folks at Lattin's Country Cider Mill and Farm host their annual Apple Harvest Festival Sunday offering apples in every way and fashion, plus tractor rides, a corn maze and pick you own pumpkins. The free festival runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.