New Neighbors Guide – Pierce County Summer/Fall 2022

Letter from the Publisher

Welcome to the New Neighbors Guide!

On behalf of the local community, we welcome you to Pierce County. Whether you’re here temporarily or for the long haul, we know you’re going to love our region. With our natural beauty, lakes, streams and forested trails, this is the perfect location for outdoor fun. With some of the best coffee in the world and a vibrant food and entertainment scene, Pierce County has something for everyone.

Let’s face it, moving to a new city can be expensive and time-consuming—but it’s also exciting! This guide is written by a mix of perspectives from native Pierce Countians to people who moved here from out of the area. We created this guide with the things we wish we had known when we moved here.

This resource guide offers tips and reminders to get you settled and to get the nuts and bolts of your new home well underway. This guide will also help you get connected to your local community, schools and health care, and help you put down “roots” in your daily life here. From great ideas for your home and events to engage in the community, we have you covered.

As we put together this issue, we look forward to providing you with information and education about all the “best things” in Pierce County and we hope to give you a sense of place where you belong and can engage and feel connected. We welcome you, our “new neighbor,” to Pierce County.

Kindest regards,
Robin Lucas, Publisher

This Issue’s Content

Welcome to Pierce County!

You’re a new resident of beautiful Pierce County — congratulations! But now there are some important tasks to take care of. Updating personal information is essential in order to become […]

Dancing Goats Coffee in Tacoma’s Brewery District

When Dancing Goats Coffee Bar opened in the Brewery Blocks, Tacoma residents and UW students were treated to a great coffeehouse with a modern look not seen in their other […]

Life in Pierce County

Vibrant and diverse, Pierce County is made up of over 20 cities, including urban Tacoma, charming Gig Harbor and home of the Washington State Fair, Puyallup. The County is composed […]

The Harbor History Museum

Nestled on the Gig Harbor waterfront where Donkey Creek meets the bay, the Harbor History Museum is celebrating its 12th year of operation. Yet the Museum’s campus has a much […]

Free Summer Ballet Immersion Week

After a two-year COVID hiatus, Tacoma City Ballet School will once again offer its Annual Free Summer Ballet Immersion Week. Students 11 years of age and up are invited to […]

Enrolling in School in Pierce County

Choosing the best academic environment for your child can seem daunting when you move to a new area. There are numerous traditional options to consider—your neighborhood public school, a charter […]

Giving Back in the 253

In any community, a sense of “community” is built on the connections made through unique groups of people that support one another. When I moved to Tacoma five years ago, […]

Making Your House a Home

Tips to transform a house into a home with décor and furniture from the heart ~Design tips provided by Sage Interiors in Tacoma Your entry is the initial introduction to […]

Getting Settled into a New Home

After the last box is moved into your new home, you might think the hardest part of moving is over. And you’re right, but there are still things to take […]

Olympic Landscape – Heart for Community

Olympic Landscape has been designing, building and servicing outdoor residential and commercial spaces in the South Sound for more than 40 years. As an expert landscape contractor, the company creates […]

The Negro Motorist Green Book

What comes to mind when you hear “road trip”? Joyfully cruising down a highway flanked by incredible scenery, stopping to eat or check into a hotel whenever and wherever you […]

Crumbl Cookie Brings Decadence to Pierce County with New Tacoma Location

When you combine the perfect recipe of location, marketing, and timing — you get one tasty cookie. You may have heard of or had the pleasure of tasting Crumbl Cookies […]

Farmers Markets in the South Sound

Farmers Markets provide access to fresh, local, sustainable food and food products. At most of our local markets, you will find not only fresh fruits and vegetables, but also fresh-cut […]

Pediatrics Northwest: 6 Tips for Winning Over Picky Eaters

Getting young children to eat a balanced, healthy diet can be a definite challenge. But it’s important to remember that as you help your child learn healthy eating habits for […]

Service and Convenience at the Heart of Light Dental Studios

We can all agree on the qualities for the ideal dental provider: round-the-clock service, free consultations, same-day appointments, entire-family bookings, empathetic service and affordable care. It’s nearly impossible to find […]

Physical Therapy with Fun & Family

Owners Kim Bisson and Susan Jankelson wanted to create a clinic that felt like home. Their goal was for each person who walked through the doors, whether patient or employee, […]

Warm-Weather Wellness Tips for Seniors

Warmer weather often awakens a desire to get outside and be active. But seniors who have a higher sensitivity to heat need to use caution when making plans in the […]

Farmers Markets in the South Sound

Farmers Markets provide access to fresh, local, sustainable food and food products. At most of our local markets, you will find not only fresh fruits and vegetables, but also fresh-cut flower bouquets, garden and landscaping plants, artisan breads, farm fresh eggs and meats, and handcrafted items for gift giving, plus many markets have regular entertainment and dining out options.

Lakewood Farmers Market

Following two successful years at the Fort Steilacoom Park, the City of Lakewood plans to continue using the large park for their Farmers Market on Tuesdays. The 2022 season will begin on Tuesday, June 7 and end on Tuesday, August 30, open from 2 to 7pm.

According to the organizer of the Lakewood market, Sally Martinez, “Farmers markets are a way for the community to gather. It is a family affair where we can get more done as we shop, socialize, play, and eat in a beautiful setting.”
cityoflakewood.us/lakewood-farmers-market

City of Tacoma Farmers Markets

The City of Tacoma hosts three weekly Farmers Markets. Tuesday’s market can be found at 3500 McKinley Avenue from 3 to 7pm beginning June 1 and concluding on August 31. A second market then follows on Thursdays at 9th and Broadway from 10am to 3pm May 6 through August 26. From September 2 to October 28, the hours will be 10am to 2pm. The third market takes place on Sunday at 5105 Point Ruston Loop from 10am to 3pm June 6 through August 31.
tacomafarmersmarket.com

Gig Harbor Waterfront Farmers Market

This market operates on Thursdays at the scenic Skansie Brothers Park. From June 2 to August 25, the market is open from 1 to 7pm. The first two weeks in September, the 1st and the 8th, the market will be open from 1 to 6pm. waterfrontfarmersmarket.org

The Puyallup Farmers Market

One of the largest markets in the Puget Sound, Puyallup is open every Saturday, April through October, from 9am to 2pm at 330 South Meridian. Opportunities to become a vendor or a volunteer can be found on their website. puyallupmainstreet.com

BY LYNN CASTLE

Crumbl Cookie Brings Decadence to Pierce County with New Tacoma Location

When you combine the perfect recipe of location, marketing, and timing — you get one tasty cookie. You may have heard of or had the pleasure of tasting Crumbl Cookies — a Utah-originated establishment that has swept the nation off its tastebuds. And if you are a Crumbl Cookie fan living in Pierce County, it’s likely you’ve had the chance to stop into Crumbl’s Puyallup or Bonney Lake stores.

In December of 2020, Crumbl Cookie store owner Doug Clark made a giant leap of faith by leaving his career in home improvement reality TV to open a Crumbl store in Puyallup. Just like with any new endeavor during the pandemic, Clark expected his new business to be met with some obstacles, but what came his way was more than he could have dreamed.

Within a short 13 months, the Puyallup store was Crumbl Cookie’s #1 location in the nation. For six months straight, the location was the top-grossing store every day, broke several records, and later won an award for Best Business of 2021 in all categories.

“The store was on fire,” said Clark. “People would drive from all over, even hours away for our cookies. We had a parking lot full of people waiting to order and we needed 24-hour crews at the ready to keep up with the demand. We’ve [Crumbl Cookies] never seen curbside pick-up like that before.”

Clark attributes the unsurmountable success to the “delicious recipe” of a revolving weekly menu, a unique and enchanting store design, and Crumbl’s social media presence. Many customers come back daily to get their favorite treat while it’s still available and with a larger store interior, they get to watch the cookie-making process — something not every Crumbl location offers. The Crumbl Cookie brand also has a huge TikTok following, at a whopping 3.5 million fans. TikTok helps many brands go “viral” and Crumbl Cookies is no exception. And as Clark describes it, the Puyallup location’s beautiful build, tiles, and colors give it a social media-friendly element.

“It’s the perfect symphony of a brand,” said Clark. “In fact, the Puyallup store is now the standard and case study for all Crumbl stores.”

Following such an outstanding business year, Clark’s Crumbl enterprise has expanded into Tacoma. Tacoma Central now has the world’s largest Crumbl Cookie store that is double the size and with the first ever three-oven, three-mixer setup. Opening day was February 10, 2022, and although the layout differs from its Puyallup sibling, the Tacoma location provides the same incredibly sweet experience.

Crumbl Cookie
crumblcookie.com

BY NATALIE BENSON

Free Summer Ballet Immersion Week

After a two-year COVID hiatus, Tacoma City Ballet School will once again offer its Annual Free Summer Ballet Immersion Week. Students 11 years of age and up are invited to attend the weeklong program August 15-19. Admission is free and open to all dancers in the region.

According to Miss Erin Ceragioli, Director of the Tacoma City Ballet School, “Free Immersion Week was started to make the study of classical ballet accessible to dancers in the South Sound.”

The entire week will be filled with daily classes from 10am to 5pm. During the two previous Immersion Weeks, more than 80 students of all ages attended the daily classes, some traveling in carpools from around the region. The classes will include Ballet Technique, Pointe, Pas De Deux, Classical Variations, Contemporary Technique, Modern Technique, Choreography and Theater Stage Craft.

“Exposing more people to the art of classical ballet helps to propagate it. Free Immersion Week allows students to enjoy classes taught by master teachers, accompaniment by professional musicians, and a huge, beautiful ballroom in which to dance. Unlike many other summer programs, this exposure is all free,” said Ceragioli who also serves as the Executive and Artistic Director of Tacoma City Ballet.

Enrollment for the Free Summer Ballet Immersion Week is a simple process that includes submitting your name, address, email, phone, dance experience and current school attendance information to tacomacityballet@gmail.com

Celebrating their 67th anniversary this year, Tacoma City Ballet is a non-profit organization that hosts both a ballet school and a performing company. The Ballet School offers classes for students ages 4 years to adulthood, while the Ballet Company produces and presents performance seasons at the Pantages Theater accompanied by the Tacoma City Orchestra.

Since 1983, Tacoma City Ballet has resided in the historic Merlino Art Center where dancers study, rehearse, and perform the art of classical ballet. The Merlino Art Center is also home to The Jan Collum Ballroom Theater, a fully equipped black box theater that doubles as studio space for the school and the company.

Tacoma City Ballet
tacomacityballet.com

BY LYNN CASTLE

Dancing Goats Coffee in Tacoma’s Brewery District

When Dancing Goats Coffee Bar opened in the Brewery Blocks, Tacoma residents and UW students were treated to a great coffeehouse with a modern look not seen in their other Washington locations. The chic and cool-looking store features their fresh roasted coffee blends as well as the highest level of service.

The development at Brewery Blocks revitalized dining and retail space in the historic area of downtown Tacoma. Visitors enjoy outdoor café seating, ample parking and pedestrian-friendly streets with widened sidewalks featuring native landscaping. Located off the Thea Foss Waterway Bridge, Brewery Blocks also includes office space and residential lofts making their motto “Live. Work. Play.” a reality.

This district was highly attractive to the Dancing Goats team because of its accessibility to students, museums and the downtown workforce that visits Tacoma every day. According to Becci Ryder, Dancing Goats’ director of business strategy, “We wanted to be a part of the hustle and bustle of a downtown that is the hub of the community and bring our “Right Way” approach to the area.

“Our coffee sets us apart. We roast it fresh and it never sits on our shelves,” said Ryder. Batdorf & Bronson, parent company to Dancing Goats, visits coffee farms around the world to secure the best product. Each Dancing Goats store orders what they need for the week and only then is it roasted and shipped to their 10 locations in Washington and Atlanta, Georgia.

Located at Commerce and South 21st Street, the 2,000+ square foot Dancing Goat Coffee Bar offers indoor and patio seating and is open 8am to 6pm. The location features the Dancing Goats blend which brews well as espresso or as a drip.

Dancing Goats Coffee
253.292.1530
dancinggoat.com

BY ANDREA LERUM

Service and Convenience at the Heart of Light Dental Studios

We can all agree on the qualities for the ideal dental provider: round-the-clock service, free consultations, same-day appointments, entire-family bookings, empathetic service and affordable care. It’s nearly impossible to find a full combination of such attributes. But then there’s Light Dental Studios.

Based in Puyallup, the dentist-owned company—with 19 locations in the South Puget Sound—has customer service at the core of its mission.

“We try to treat people the way we would want to be treated,” says owner and CEO Dr. Steven Broughton, who bought his first office from a former dentist in 1997. “People say our practice feels like we’re all neighbors, like they’re just going down the street for friendly dental care.”

With hours from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. including Saturdays, doctors available 24/7, free consultations, same-day appointments, and entire-family same-day care, Light Dental Studios has solutions patients need.

“We’re trying to make dentistry effortless by making it about our patients, not the dentists,” says Broughton. “Our schedule accommodates their schedule, not the other way around. Our doctors are always available, and almost all procedures are done in-house.”

Besides standard dental checkups, treatments and other services, Light Dental Studios offers on-site orthodontics, implants, surgeries and dentures. Children’s dental care is also offered. In fact, the offices frequently schedule care for entire families side-by-side on the same day to save time.

Light Dental Studios also gives back to the community at the annual South Sound Free Dental Day. That’s when the staff donates its time and skills to give away more than $90,000 worth of dental work—including fillings and extractions—on a first come, first-served basis.

“We want patients to feel comfortable,” Broughton says. “Our first goal is to provide same-day treatment.”

Broughton notes that Light Dental Studios will continue to add offices over the upcoming years in growing family locations.

Light Dental Studios
lightdentalstudios.com

BY LEAH GROUT

Getting Settled into a New Home

After the last box is moved into your new home, you might think the hardest part of moving is over. And you’re right, but there are still things to take care of before you can relax completely.

Get Your Utilities Set Up

You don’t want to arrive at your new place late at night and find that the lights don’t work. Before you move, arrange for the utilities to be set up there. Make sure all of your services are up and running so you can check your electronics and appliances.

Check Major Appliances

If you moved major appliances, such as a range, dishwasher, washer or dryer, check to make sure nothing was damaged during the move. This is particularly important if the mover prepared your appliances for the move. Your insurance policy may have a limited time in which to make a claim. Since these are big-ticket items, you want to make sure they’re all working.

Check all Boxes and Furniture

Make sure all boxes and furniture arrived and that nothing is damaged. If you’re missing something or you find damage, contact the mover and your insurance company to submit a claim. It’s important to do this immediately after moving in or the insurance company may not reimburse you.

Save Receipts

Keep all receipts and documentation related to your move in one file and store the file in a safe, secure place. Make sure you have your bill of lading and payment receipt. You may be able to claim your move on your next tax return, and you’ll need all the necessary receipts to make your claim.

Make Sure You’re Getting Your Mail

Check with the post office about mail forwarding. Update all important files and documents with your new address and notify everyone who needs to know about your move.

BY KELLY LENIHAN

Pediatrics Northwest: 6 Tips for Winning Over Picky Eaters

Getting young children to eat a balanced, healthy diet can be a definite challenge. But it’s important to remember that as you help your child learn healthy eating habits for life, the foundation of healthy eating outweighs the challenges by far. Nonetheless, it can still be a difficult phase, so here are some ways to ease you through this trying season.

1. Minimize mealtime distractions.

Turn off the television, clear toys from the dining table, and implement a “no phone at the table” rule to help everyone focus on the family conversation and their food.

2. Set a good example.

Eat together as a family as often as possible and eat a variety of healthy foods yourself. You are your child’s best role model; let them see you enjoying healthy foods and they will follow.

3. Don’t force your child to clean their plate.

Instead, avoid the power struggle by encouraging them to try at least two bites of everything on their plate.

4. Think about how you brand it.

Food becomes more approachable with a fun name attached to it. Think “pinwheel sandwiches” rather than turkey and cheese rolled up in a tortilla, “pink fish” rather than salmon, or “miniature trees” rather than broccoli.

5. Get your child involved.

Encourage them to help you shop for healthy food at the grocery store, then let them help wash and prepare the fruits and vegetables. Being a part of the process makes kids more interested in the end result on their plate.

6. Let your child have a say by giving them choices with limited options.

Ask questions like: Milk or water with dinner? Purple cup or green cup? Superhero plate or Mickey Mouse plate? This keeps your child feeling like their input matters while also keeping the conversation focused.

Pediatrics Northwest
pedsnw.net

BY JOHN APOSTOL, MD, FAAP

The Harbor History Museum

Nestled on the Gig Harbor waterfront where Donkey Creek meets the bay, the Harbor History Museum is celebrating its 12th year of operation. Yet the Museum’s campus has a much deeper history, first as a village site of the sxw babš, or Swift Water People, a band of the Puyallup Tribe. In the early 1900s it bexame the site of C.O. Austin’s log mill and original site of the Peninsula Light Company, formed in 1926. The Museum campus includes the 1893 Midway Schoolhouse and 65-foot fishing boat, Shenandoah. Step through the Museum’s front doors, surrounded by massive logs reminiscent of the trees that were once milled here, and a whole world of culture and tradition welcomes you.

The Museum’s 7,000 square-foot permanent gallery takes you on a journey from the twisted remnants of “Galloping Gertie” (the first Tacoma Narrows Bridge) to the immigrant stories of boat builders, fishermen, farmers, and ferry operators. Look closely and find the first winners of Gig Harbor’s fabled Round Rock Contest and hear the clamor of the crowd as C.E. Shaw’s famous racing roosters take to the track. These roosters were so popular they were featured on New York’s radio show Hobby Lobby 1938, running a demonstration race at Madison Square Garden.

Fans of local boat building will delight in the Willits canoe, the giant wheel from the ferry Defiance, and a purse seiner’s power block—the 1950s invention that changed commercial fishing forever. Loved by many are the Norwegian and Croatian costumes on display from the days of Scandia Gaard, a 1970s local attraction where Nordic heritage was celebrated through music, dance, and folklore.

Visitors may step inside the one-room Midway schoolhouse, the last of its kind in the Gig Harbor area. Restored and set in 1915, the schoolhouse is home to the popular Pioneer School Experience field trip program.

The Shenandoah is 65 feet of wonder. Recently named an American Treasure by the National Park Service, she is being preserved for future generations as the centerpiece of the Museum’s new Maritime Gallery, due to open in 2025. Visitors can see her restoration in action.

Harbor History Museum
4121 Harborview Dr, Gig Harbor
235.858.6722
harborhistorymuseum.org

BY STEPHANIE LILE

Life in Pierce County

Vibrant and diverse, Pierce County is made up of over 20 cities, including urban Tacoma, charming Gig Harbor and home of the Washington State Fair, Puyallup. The County is composed of historic structures and buildings, breathtaking waterfront views, lush rural land, quaint and welcoming suburbs, an ever-industrious energy, and is the neighbor to magnificent Mount Rainier. There is so much to explore and safely engage in, even during this time of social distancing.

Health & Wellness

Nonprofits MultiCare and Virginia Mason Franciscan Health offer pristine services, top-rated physicians, and have several locations in order to be easily accessible to patients. Try local yoga studios, gym facilities, therapy offices and more. Everything you need to keep happy and healthy is nearby. Be sure to check business hours and number of participants that are allowed in the facility.

Get Some Fresh Air

There are many opportunities to get outside and play in Pierce County’s varied terrain. There are over 5,271 acres of available recreation – trails, golf courses, beaches, skateboard pavilions, parks and more. Remember, Mount Rainier National Park is close by. Be sure to check restrictions and regulations before venturing out and stay home if you are feeling under the weather.

Arts & Culture

Our County is alive with creativity and innovation. Immerse yourself at art museums such as the Tacoma Art Museum, the Museum of Glass, and Asia Pacific Cultural Center during their new business hours. Support local artisans and makers by visiting small-town art galleries, downtown boutiques, and local breweries. Dine happily at renowned restaurants and cafes, being sure to follow Pierce County safety regulations.

History

The County celebrates so much of its past by maintaining historic buildings and sites and by offering numerous museums relative to each area. Many historic museums have now re-opened to the public. The Fort Nisqually Living History Museum, operated by Metro Parks Tacoma, provides visitors with a look at one of the original settlements on Puget Sound.

BY NATALIE BENSON