New Neighbor Guide – Thurston Summer 2022

Letter from the Publisher

Welcome to the New Neighbors Guide! On behalf of the local community, we welcome you to Thurston County. Whether you’re here temporarily or plan to make this a permanent home, 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, Thurston County has something for everyone.

Let’s face it, moving to a new city can be costly and time-consuming—but it’s also exciting! This guide is written by a mix of perspectives from native Thurston Countians to people who moved here from out of the area. Our group reminisced about what we wish people had told us when we first 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 resource 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 Thurston 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 Thurston County.

Kindest regards,


Robin Lucas, Publisher

This Issue’s Content

Wa Center Announces Scholarship for the Arts

The winner of the 2022 Washington Center Anacker Scholarship for the Arts is Camille McLean. Camille is graduating from Olympia High School where she has served as concertmaster of the […]

New to Thurston County?

Here’s What You Need to Know There is always so much to do when you move. This checklist will help you to quickly navigate a few important tasks related to […]

Living in Thurston County

Thurston County is centrally located to some of the best the Pacific Northwest has to offer. Any day of the week, you can embark on a new adventure. Visit spectacular […]

Josh Deck New President and CEO at OlyFed

After more than 38 years with OlyFed, Lori Drummond will retire as the bank’s President and CEO on June 30. Promoted from within, like most of the team at OlyFed, […]

Enrolling in School in Thurston County

Parents have more options than ever before in choosing an academic environment that best fits the needs of their student. In Thurston County, there are 60 public primary schools, 17 […]

Giving Back in Thurston County

A great way to quickly learn about your new community and meet new friends is to get involved with a nonprofit organization. Every community offers numerous opportunities to support these […]

Community Spotlight: South Sound Success Story

Heidi Duncan of Duncan Insurance, Olympia It could be that some superheroes come into being from a toxic spider bite, but other superheroes are just born into their roles as […]

Team RED: Resourceful • Experienced • Dedicated

Results of a recent survey found that nearly one in four seniors felt they could not move, either because they couldn’t afford moving costs or because they didn’t believe they […]

How To Incorporate Biophilic Design into Your Home

Biophilic design is not just about bringing the outdoors in; the focus is on indoor air quality, natural light, and color schemes grounded in nature. Indoor Air Quality Be mindful […]

Designed to Maximize Sweeping Views

The Elliott Bay House is located in Seattle on a narrow site facing Puget Sound. The house has a south-facing courtyard containing a reflecting pool with two “floating” basalt boulders. […]

Making Your House a Home

Tips to transform a house into a home with decor and furniture from the heart Your entry is the initial introduction to your home and sets the stage for you […]

The HeART of the Home Cabinets by Trivonna

Cabinets by Trivonna of Lacey pride themselves on a design experience that is uniquely customized to their individual client’s dreams and wishes. Trivonna brings to life an artful design plan […]

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 […]

Holy Lamb Organics−Natural Bedding Made Locally

Holy Lamb Organics has been making natural bedding products locally by hand in the small town of Oakville, Washington for 18 years. The South Sound community can access a “touch […]

Celebrating More Than 70 Years—Panowicz Jewelers

Even after seven decades, Panowicz Jewelers still holds true to its founding: a legacy of quality, integrity and value. Founded in 1948 by Anton Panowicz Sr., the local-family-owned jewelry store […]

Capitol City Honda: Reputation – A Family Tradition

Kelly Levesque, owner of Capitol City Honda, understands better than most what it means to do business in your hometown. According to Kelly, “It means your neighbors are buying from […]

Health & Wellness Close to Home

Moving to a new community means finding new healthcare providers for you and your family. Thurston County offers a wide variety of independent health practitioners and large healthcare systems to […]

SPSCC Health & Wellness Center Now Open!

Back in 2015, a group of student leaders began a journey to explore financing, planning and construction of a student-funded wellness and health space at South Puget Sound Community College. […]

Shop Fresh and Local at Olympia Farmers Market

Shopping at the Olympia Farmers Market can be a great way to get to know your community while supporting your local economy. Open year-round with three distinct operating seasons, it’s […]

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 […]

Tumwater Eye Center: State-of-the-art digital and infra-red retinal imagining

Taking care of your eyes may not be at the top of your priority list. However, foresight will do you much better than hindsight. “Be preventative,” recommends Dr. Finch of […]

Saving One Life at a Time at Feline Friends

Welcoming a cat into your home can change your heart forever. Feline Friends, a non-profit rescue and adoption agency, carefully matches cats with their forever homes. Jo MacGugan and countless […]

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 […]