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How to avoid the Open

Staying away from the hoopla

Motorcycle races and soccer at Marymount might be a nice diversion, and at the very least, out of the way of the Open. File photo

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If your plan is to stay as far away from the U.S. Open in University Place as you can, but staying home isn't what you want to do either, allow us to suggest a few alternatives:


There are a few car-related diversions to grab your fancy between June 15 and June 21, including the LeMay - America's Car Museum 19th Hole promotion with their special golf cart display, complimentary beverage, and the U.S. Open Championship on the big screen.  Details are at: One of the world's largest car collections is here in Tacoma.

Another LeMay car collection is in Spanaway at the Marymount location, and during the Open, they are celebrating Motorcycle Week with an indoor display of more than 200 vintage motorcycles, including an AHRMA-sanctioned vintage motorcycle race on June 20, and Sunday see a motorcycle soccer game. Visit for more information.

If parked vehicles aren't your thing, then head to Pacific Raceways for live drag racing. This gets you out of Pierce County entirely, but is less than a 30-minute drive to see professional, loud, racing at its best. During the Open, Pacific Raceways hosts the National Dragster Challenge and the Junior Drag Racing League Challenge, June 20.  Go here for more information:

Live Acts

The greater Puget Sound receives its shares of touring acts, and during the Open, that is as true as any other time.  Check for the following: June 17, Dana Carvey, Dennis Miller, and Kevin Nealon are live at the Tacoma Dome; Toad the Wet Sproket and Smash Mouth are in Woodinville at the winery, June 19; Chicago is also at the winery, June 20; and Nickelback is at the Gorge, June 20.

On the local stage, you can see Defending the Caveman at the Broadway Center, June 18-21; and the Mystery of Edwin Drood, June 19-21 at the Lakewood Playhouse.


Love crowds, just not golf?  There are plenty of other places to go where traffic is a bear and lots of people congregate over a particular theme. Here are a few worthy of investigation, including the popular Fremont Fair: Leavenworth International Accordian Celebration, (; Burlington Berry Dairy Days (; Auburn Kidsdays (; the Fremont Fair (; Edmonds Arts Festival (;  Meeker Days in Puyallup (; Festival Sundiata in Seattle (; the Northwest Garlic Festival on the coast (; Burien Wild Strawberry Festival (; and the Alls Faire fantasy festival in Bonney Lake (

Other diversions

The following doesn't fit neatly into a single theme, but are worthy of consideration, and at least out of the drive paths to the Open.

American Soldier opens June 20th at the Washington State History Museum in downtown Tacoma and includes 116 enlarged photographs documenting America at war. It begins with the Civil War and includes photographs from the Spanish American War; Boxer Rebellion; World War I; World War II; Korea; Vietnam; Gulf War; Iraq and Afghanistan. As described by the museum, the exhibition, "captures the courage, camaraderie, humor, family and sacrifice" of American soldiers. For more information, visit

The 2015 Tacky Tie Two-Mile Race is a twist on the ugly sweater craze, encouraging runners to race with a really bad tie or bow tie, leaving Jefferson Park in Tacoma June 20 at noon for a short jaunt. The cost is $20. For more information, visit

What's Cooking is a re-enactment live cooking show to see how they prepared food in the 19th Century in present day DuPont. Only, the event is in Tacoma at Point Defiance Park where a replica of Fort Nisqually, once situated in DuPont, is now in the park for tours and information about early life in the Pacific Northwest. Watch succulent roasts and stews from 11-5 p.m. Chefs will also compete for prizes. For more information, visit

Putt Putt in downtown Tacoma arrives for Open Week with a special twist. Produced by the Tacoma Art Museum, these 10 holes are each designed by artists and stretch from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation Plaza, Tollefson Plaza, and along the Prairie Line Trail. It's also free to the public. Nice! It opens June 18 with various hours to Sunday. The info is at

Finally, there are a bevy of farmers markets stretching across the South Sound area and north towards Seattle and south to Portland. You may want to avoid Puyallup's and University Place's markets until the tournament is over, but the big daddy in Olympia, Proctor's and Tacoma's markets, and even Pike Place Market in Seattle, are perfect ways to escape the golf mania. To find a complete list of dates, times and locations, visit

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