Imagine Van Gogh: Coming to the Tacoma Armory

In 2008, Annabelle Mauger crafted her very first immersive Van Gogh exhibition and, in the last few years, the finalized project has become an incredible hit. Imagine Van Gogh, the Original Exhibition in Image Totale© sold over 500,000 tickets across Canada in 2020 alone. The exhibit will be presenting stunning renditions of Van Gogh’s classic artwork in over 200 of his paintings brought to life in a breathtaking immersive experience. Mauger and Julien Baron, renowned for their work at Cathédrale d’Images in Les Baux-de-Provence, France, are no strangers to the immersive art world — in fact, they are pioneers of the medium. Since 2016, the duo have developed and expanded Image Totale© to create a truly emotionally cathartic experience for visitors.

In order to create such a unique exhibition, Mauger and Baron used warping techniques to adapt the surface to the projected image, releasing the art being trapped inside of the canvas. “The choice of images, the way they are positioned, their rhythm and their association with the music all compose this original creation conceived by Annabelle Mauger and developed with Julien Baron.”

Online reservations for Imagine Van Gogh are encouraged, as admission is based on timed-entry and tickets are sure to sell out quickly! Each ticket is valid for one person, with no re-entry permitted and they are nonrefundable. The exhibition is open at the Tacoma Armory until January 30, 2022, with shortened hours on Christmas Eve and Christmas.

For Additional Information and Tickets


Danny Vernon – Elvis Illusionist

Call them what you will … Illusionist, Impersonator or Tribute Performer … many of us love hearing a great Elvis song that brings the King of Rock ‘n Roll to life. If you are one of us, your chance to see an award-winning local Elvis performer is coming up Wednesday, December 22nd and Thursday, December 23rd at the Muckelshoot Casino in Auburn.

For more than three decades, Danny Vernon has been performing his Elvis show honed by listening and singing along to records purchased by his Dad.  “Dad would buy the sound track soon after seeing the movies in the 60’s,” said Vernon. “I do those songs really well, so I enjoy performing them,” he added.

Vernon is known for his high energy Elvis Tribute shows that focus on connecting with his audience while performing three distinct areas of Elvis’ career. From Hillbilly cat of the 50’s, to the sleek 60’s movie years and then of course onto the sexy 70’s jumpsuit era, each show highlights the voice, look and passion of the musical icon known as Elvis.

Vernon strives to celebrate Elvis not to pretend to be him. “I know people like the show to be as authentic as possible, so I try not to lose my own personality in it,” he said recently.

Tickets for the 8 o’clock shows at the Muckelshoot can be secured by contacting the Muckelshoot via phone at (800) 804-4944 or on-line at

Don’t miss your chance to celebrate the holidays in true Elvis style with Danny Vernon’s Elvis Tribute shows.

For more general information about Danny Vernon and his performances around the Puget Sound, visit his website at

Harlequin Presents Dickens’ A Christmas Carol

Harlequin Productions presents Producing Artistic Director Aaron Lamb’s new adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, November 26 – December 31 at the State Theater in downtown Olympia..

Hailed as the greatest ghost story ever told, we begin a new Holiday tradition at Harlequin with a fresh adaptation of Charles Dickens’ classic story of transformation, absolution, and grace. Join us for a Holiday classic that’s sure to please, with a healthy dose of cheer and the kind of ghostly special effects that only Harlequin can deliver.

Delayed by the COVID pandemic shutdown, this production marks the beginning of a new tradition of Holiday shows at Harlequin. Beginning in 1994, almost every Harlequin season began with a new addition to the Stardust canon, a series of original musicals featuring classic tunes from the 1940s to 1950s. They were a unique and beloved part of the South Sound Holiday season. In 2019, Harlequin began the transition to A Christmas Carol with Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Christmas Carol, which was well received by the community. With the premiere of Mr. Lamb’s adaptation, the new tradition has finally begun!

What can audiences expect from this new adaptation? Says Lamb, “The great majority of the text is directly from the page. We’re as close to the Dickens original as we can be…with a couple of major changes. My adaptation is a collage of all my favorite parts of other productions and versions of A Christmas Carol that I’m familiar with, with some of my own choices.”

Why A Christmas Carol, a play done by so many theaters during the Holidays? To answer, Mr. Lamb speaks to his acting career: “As a professional actor, I did a Holiday show every year for 12 years, and most of those (the best ones) were some version of A Christmas Carol. Some of my own best theater experiences are with this show. One year, I did a bus and truck tour of A Christmas Carol through the Midwest. It was a snowy, stormy year. We’d sleep on the bus, get off, do a show, get on the bus again…it was horrible. I should have been miserable. But I was having a great time, because I was playing Fred, the most positive character in A Christmas Carol, and every day the play ended at Fred’s level of positivity and good cheer.”Mr. Lamb continues, “A Christmas Carol has all the best elements of live theatre. The different things we can do with the same story are limitless. The ghost story lets us as a theater company flex our technical muscles and pull out the stops where we excel. The redemption story gives the actors the purest character arc in all of theater. So you may have seen it before, but I promise you’ve never seen this one. We will surprise you!”

Six Ways to Boost Your Immune System During the Holiday Season

“Have fun with flavor and color to boost your immune system this holiday season,” says Professor and Department Chair Anne VanBeber, R.D. With the ongoing outbreak of COVID-19 and the holidays around the corner, VanBeber provides easy tips and recommendations of food and drink to consider when planning weeknight and holiday meals.


Experts have strongly suggested adding vitamin C to our daily diet to boost immunity during the global pandemic. Lemon is high in vitamin C and, as an antioxidant, this helps our bodies prevent disease and reduce inflammation. VanBeber suggests adding lemon to your water each day.

This advice goes for warm or cold drinks. VanBeber recommends drinking more teas, which tend to contain phytochemicals – biologically active compounds found in plants. “Phyto is the root word for plant, and chemical means compounds, and phytochemicals help fight disease, keep our cells healthy, and boost immunity,” she says.

Red and Purple Foods

Dark red and purple fruits and vegetables such as blueberries, eggplant, raspberries, strawberries and cranberries each contain phytochemicals that boost the immune system. For the holiday season, try preparing fruit salads with these darkcolored berries – you can even squeeze some lemon juice and raw honey on top for added nutrients or cut up fresh mint or add some dried mint from your pantry and add it to the dressing.

Spices and Herbs

Spices and herbs come from different parts of the plant, but they have disease-fighting benefits and nutrients that are equivalent to whole foods. VanBeber suggests incorporating fresh or dried herbs into dishes whenever possible. For example, if you are making mashed potatoes, add garlic or onion powder. If you are making roasted carrots – add some dill.

Beans and Greens

Greens, high in chlorophyll — a powerful antioxidant — are popular during the holidays, and they provide a good source of vitamin A in plant form. Greens are also a significant aspect of the Mediterranean diet. Spinach, broccoli, arugula, kale, turnip greens, romaine and Bibb lettuce need to be emphasized because in the U.S., we often don’t eat enough servings of fruits and vegetables on a daily basis. Legumes, such as lentils, kidney beans, pinto beans, or chickpeas are high in fiber, inexpensive and shelf-stable foods. Fiber also protects our gut, which is the first line of defense in our immune system.

Nuts, Seeds and Supplements

Nuts and seeds are foundational to the Mediterranean diet. People who eat nuts are known to have reduced chances of heart disease and other chronic diseases. Nuts such as almonds, walnuts, pistachios, or pecans can easily be added to other vegetable dishes such as green beans or broccoli.

Zinc is known for boosting immunity and wound healing because it helps us build proteins. This is widely found in animal foods such as beef, fish, and oysters as well as tofu and seeds such as pumpkin seeds. Vitamin C and D have been commonly referenced by leading experts during the global pandemic.

Probiotics and Prebiotics

Prebiotic foods such as legumes, onions, garlic, apple skins and bananas help to protect your gut. Probiotics include fermented and cultured foods such as kombucha, yogurt, kefir, miso, tempeh, kimchi and fresh sauerkraut (not canned). All of these foods promote a healthy gut and good bacteria to help us fight off illness. “Overall, we need to focus on eating real foods like fruits, vegetables and good lean meats (if you eat meat), and avoiding prepackaged, high-sodium foods that are devoid of nutritional value,” says VanBeber.

Don’t be afraid to make your holiday dishes fun and be sure to add colorful foods from a variety of food groups.

Out and About This Holiday Season

Don’t let the winter weather stop you from getting out and about this holiday season. Fill your thermos with hot cocoa, bundle up with hats and coats, and head out to enjoy one or more of these wonderful ways to spread holiday cheer.

Winter Markets at Point Ruston

Saturdays on December 5, 12, and 19
Enjoy live music and explore the offerings of over 40 vendors, all with products grown or made in Washington State. Shoppers will be able to find seasonal vegetables, treats to take home, gifts for the holidays, and more.

Olympia Holiday Farmers Market

Saturdays and Sundays, November 6 – December 19

As the nights get longer, enjoy the season of lights with one or more of these illuminating experiences.

Gig Harbor Lighted Boat Parade

Watch the boats circling the harbor all along the Gig Harbor waterfront.
December 11

Winter Solstice Lights

Lakewold Gardens
November 19-28


Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium
November 26, 2021 – January 2, 2022

Winter Wonderland

Northwest Trek
December 26, 2021 – January 2, 2022

Fantasy Lights

Spanaway Park
November 26, 2021 – January 2, 2022

If you are seeking an indoor festive experience in venues with plenty of physical distancing, consider one of these options.

Wander through the decorated trees at Christmas in the Forest held at the Olympia Hotel at Capitol Lake (formerly Hotel RL Olympia), this year celebrating “Hope and Joy” and raising funds for the Providence Southwest Washington Foundation.

Immerse yourself in the world of Vincent Van Gogh with the unique exhibition, Imagine Van Gogh, presented by Tacoma Arts Live at the Tacoma Armory.

Plan a special gathering to make gingerbread houses. This year Greentrike will present its annual Gingerbread Jamboree as individual private parties where families are provided with kits that include everything needed to build their own sweet constructions.

Please check websites for details regarding health precautions related to any of these events.


Beautiful Cabinets by Trivonna

When you meet Amber and Rick Bevacqua, owners of Cabinets by Trivonna, you feel their passion for customer service immediately. From their showroom in Lacey, the Bevacquas pride themselves on getting to know their clients.

According to Amber, “We are hands-on and spend a lot of time with our clients to help them make smarter, more informed choices.” “Fifteen years from now, we want people to still love their choices,” added Rick.

As a licensed real estate agent with experience in house flipping, Rick has an eye for how to improve a home. “Rick can walk through a space and redesign it in his head, which allows him to do more for our clients,” said Amber.

During a recent new home build, Rick was able to collaborate with the owners to create their vision, while saving them money. The use of a unique white laminate out of Italy (Fenix from DeWils Fine Cabinetry) instead of paint in the bathrooms, laundry and mud rooms means the cabinetry will last much longer in moist environments.

Suggesting the use of a colored stain on their cherry kitchen cabinets versus glaze saved more than 30%.

Helping these clients meet their design goals included selecting cabinets that allowed for open spaces, stacked doors with glass accents, drawers and cabinets that were set in and set out to add linear variety, and inset cabinetry that was more like furniture than cabinets.

“We are different than other cabinet places . . . we are onsite with clients and are available as much as we need to be during installation to ensure we get to the client’s ultimate goal,” said Rick.

A few tips from Rick when picking your new cabinetry: Look for manufacturers that offer limited lifetime warranties. Watch for quality hardware. Notice not only the product the cabinets are made from, but, more importantly, how they are constructed. “Warranties really show you how well they are truly made because it means they believe in their product enough to stand behind it,” said Rick.

For Additional Information


Enjoy the Sounds of the Season

Holidays can feel like days of busyness. From gift shopping to party planning to decorating, it can feel like the season rushes by and is over before you know it. Taking time to enjoy the sounds of the season with a live performance can provide the pause you need to rest and reflect on the importance of the holidays. Throughout the South Sound, there are plenty of special concerts to attend this year.

Symphony Tacoma will present two performances for the holiday season. Holiday Favorites will be an evening of music from your favorite holiday shows, a lighting of the menorah, a Christmas sing-along, and beautiful music by Symphony Tacoma and Symphony Tacoma Voices that will capture the themes, spirit, and sounds of the season. They will also present an annual performance of Handel’s sacred oratorio Messiah.

Another option for vocal music is the annual Christmas concert, Hope, performed by the PLU Choir of the West, University Chorale, and University Symphony Orchestra. Works by Howard Darke, Brian Galante, Richard Nance, and others will mix with traditional carols and seasonal favorites to celebrate hope and renewal in this joyful season.

Celebrate the winter solstice and its warm traditions with a concert of original and traditional acoustic music featuring Windham Hill artists at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts. Also check the schedules for planned holiday concerts by Tacoma Concert Band, Auburn Symphony Orchestra, Federal Way Symphony, and Olympia Symphony. If you are seeking some nontraditional music to celebrate the season, Tacoma Arts Live has you covered with the swinging tunes at Big Bad Voodoo Daddy’s Wild and Swingin’ Holiday Party and the ukulele master and jolly ambassador of aloha, Jake Shimabukuro in Christmas in Hawaii.

Whatever the season brings you, make music a part of your holiday celebrations.

Please check websites for details regarding health precautions related to any of these performances.

For Additional Information and Tickets


Lakewold Garden’s Susan Warner

Bringing art, music, and nature together, Susan Warner, executive director of Lakewold Gardens, is continuing a lifelong journey creating programs and building experiences based on collections that create conversations about important social and environmental issues. She has pioneered and presented many new programs and initiatives which have transformed the cultural landscape of South Puget Sound while also providing spaces for diverse voices and perspectives.

Warner, who is a founding staff member of the Museum of Glass, also continues to advise the Museum on a variety of education initiatives including the recently launched Junior Curator Academy. In-person or virtually, middle school students from the local area learn from subject matter experts as they explore the creative process, influences, and materials used in individual works of art.

This program, like Warner’s many other exhibitions and programs, builds on the art history philosophy called deconstruction. First used by the French philosopher Jacques Derrida in the 1970s, deconstruction is a form of criticism that asserts that there is not one single intrinsic meaning to be found in an artwork, but rather many, and often these can be conflicting. She sees this as an essential part of the power that collections have to stimulate conversations.

While not a collection of artwork, Lakewold Gardens has an extensive collection of plants which includes over 800 species of rhododendrons and 30 Japanese maples. Warner’s leadership at Lakewold Gardens combines her wealth of professional education and curatorial experience with her personal passion for gardening. She wants South Sound residents to consider Lakewold Gardens as “a garden for all” because many people in our community do not have access to a private garden as well as the healing power that can be found through a connection with nature.

The Gardens took on even more significance over the past year during the pandemic. “Having a place where you can go and be safe while enjoying nature has been scientifically proven to help people,” noted Warner. “We’ve been intentional in reaching out to invite the community to the gardens through virtual events like Black Splendor, which showcased local Black musical artists, and partnerships with local organizations like MusicWorks4Veterans and Write 253.”

One upcoming event that she is excited about is the installation celebrating the winter solstice. Multimedia artist Sam Stubblefield will fill the garden with sound and light in a preview of Winter Solstice Lights from November 19-28. Visitors will have the opportunity to experience the Gardens in a whole new way as art, music and nature intertwine in this unique and creative event.

For Additional Information


Fall 2021


TAM spring luncheon

From musicals to backcountry bayou, live performance is back!

Alfa Romeo exhibit at lemay – america’s car museum

Volunteers were the backbone of vaccination clinics

New Orleans cajun & zydeco shake down the house in olympia

The evergreen state college enters 50th year with new leadership

Imagine van gogh coming to the tacoma armory

Symphony tacoma turns 75!

APCC celebrates 25th anniversary


Local elise landry wins chopped next gen

Fall charcuterie board

Home & Garden

Defining space in an open floor plan

Myth busting: the truth about construction loans


Fashion trends for Fall 2021

Nathalie Bajinya’s future is as bright as her fashions


Escape to walla walla

Air adventure park heads to auburn


New technology helps identify macular degeneration

Yoga classes offer big health and wellness benefits to seniors

WA529 Plans Have Added Perks

Studies show that students who know they have the college savings available to them are nearly seven times more likely to attend higher education than those who don’t.  Starting a WA529 GET or DreamAhead account can put students on the path to a brighter future through higher education. 

What are WA529 plans?  In the simplest description, the Washington College Savings Plans, or WA529, are a collection of 529 college savings plans offered by the State of Washington.

The first program, created in 1998, is Guaranteed Education Tuition, or GET, which entails paying tuition in advance at a set price. The value of GET units is guaranteed to keep pace with in-state college tuition and fees at the state’s highest-priced university (currently UW Tacoma).

Even after more than 23 years, the GET program continues to evolve and improve to ensure that it equitably meets the needs of those enrolled.  For example, recent adjustments have been made to limit the annual increases to the unit purchase price and those limits were retroactive.  This means that GET account owners who bought units during the last two enrollment periods (July 2019 to June 2021) have either had additional units deposited into their accounts, or soon will, to make up for the adjustment. 

For the first time in the program’s history, the 2021-22 GET unit price has been set at $114.01, which matches the 2021-22 GET Unit Payout Value.  “In addition to creating an unprecedented opportunity for GET savers this coming enrollment year to literally ‘purchase tomorrow’s tuition at today’s price,’ the cost of units in future enrollment years should be more affordable,” said Rodger O’Connor, Associate Director for Marketing and Communications for WA529.

The second WA529 plan is the DreamAhead College Investment Plan, a Bronze Award winner by Morningstar, Inc.  In this college investment plan, for which enrollment is open year-round, returns are tied to the performance of the financial market. Account owners select one of two saving options: year of enrollment portfolios, which gradually grow more conservative the closer the student gets to attending college, or static portfolios, that always let the account owner set the strategy.

DreamAhead savings and GET units can be used nearly everywhere—including out-of-state institutions, private schools, community colleges, trade and technical schools, and even to cover the cost of an apprenticeship.  Since 1998, more than 55,000 students have used GET in all 50 states and 15 countries worldwide.  The benefits of the two WA529 plans are vast.

For more detailed information on these programs or to get started visit