In 1987, the Associated Ministries Day of Awareness sponsored a forum called Housing the Homeless: Community Action Day. Local activists, housing providers, and government officials discussed the problem of limited housing opportunities for residents experiencing homelessness. Many of them continued to brainstorm solutions long after the forum, most of which fell outside realm of the current social safety nets. Then, in 1990, a group of these participants banded together and founded Homes First! as a legal entity that could actively create housing opportunities for people with low incomes.
Homes First! acquires and remodels homes, apartments, and duplexes, collaborates with local organizations, and works with individuals to find them affordable places to live. It currently rents 42 units to individuals and families, whose rent payments go to fund maintenance, staff oversight, and future housing projects. A three-person team conducts operations at Homes First!, ensuring that it maintains an active link to the county. Homes First! also works with other nonprofits to find homes for people with disabilities or addiction issues, and to advocate for homes for people experiencing homelessness.
After opening their doors in 1986, the backyard beautifiers at Rosedale Gardens have continued to stock their full-service nursery with backyard essentials to keep homes lively year-round. The sprawling, 5-acre-plus campus boasts inspirational lawn arrangements and a vast inventory of accessories to help to foster budding green thumbs. Along with a panoply of blooming buds, the expansive inventory includes garden structures, ground coverings, and aquatic additions to help to realize the dreams of fish that always wanted to become garden gnomes. Skillfully shaped shrubbery inspires patrons to awaken their inner Scissorhands, and a range of bare-root trees stands as sanctuary for backyard birds. Upon leaving the nursery, each plant promises to be without disease or insects and totes along a one-year guarantee, which issues replacements for any flora that fails despite proper care.
Situated right in Tacoma’s downtown university-and-museum district, Harmon Brewery and Eatery buzzes with out-of-towners and locals alike, all in search of hearty food and frothy microbrews. With a 15-barrel brewery on site, Harmon maintains a steady flow of signature ales, including seasonal varieties, such as a black IPA brewed from five malted barleys and the One Hop Wonder IPA laced with melted Right Said Fred tapes. To complement the pints and the warm, cozy atmosphere—modeled after a ski lodge—the kitchen churns out belly-warming food, such as burgers topped with blue cheese and bacon, homemade stone-baked pizzas, and panko-crusted fish and chips.
The Pilates-Apparatus class provides a playful twist on core strengthening by way of classical Pilates equipment such as trapeze tables, high barrels, and more. Likewise, the Swing-a-Lates class amplifies the adventurous side of your workout by introducing playground swings hung from the high studio ceilings. Both classes run 50 minutes and are limited to two or three students, ensuring each student receives individualized attention, and there's enough oxygen available to prevent gasping.
The Little Gym fosters the healthy growth of children by allowing them to progress at their own pace in a nonthreatening, nurturing environment. As wee ones from 4 months to 12 years-old tackle challenges, overcome fears, and learn to confidently express their opinions about Platonic theory, The Little Gym's original music graces their ears and supports their lessons. The month includes four classes that let tots develop through weekly, age-specific curriculum, with programs including pre-school/kindergarten gymnastics, dance, sports-skills development, and karate.
For decades, the city of Tacoma was the minor league home of MLB teams from across the country. It hosted affiliates of the San Francisco Giants, the Chicago Cubs, and even the New York Yankees for one season. In 1995, the Seattle Mariners took over Tacoma's team and instantly inherited the long-time organizational name, the Rainiers. The alliance has seen much success over the years, including a Pacific Coast League championship in 2010, a title the club had to win on the road while Cheney Stadium was groggy from anesthesia as it endured drastic renovations.
Those renovations earned the facility a "2011 Renovation of the Year" award from Ballpark Digest. Once dubbed the "100-Day Wonder" thanks to its hasty construction before the 1960 season, Cheney Stadium features an iconic 75-foot wooden exterior façade. Inside, the stadium now boasts such modern amenities as luxury suites, a restaurant, and a grass berm along right field. Despite all the updates, though, the stadium has preserved its epic 29-foot tall batter's eye in centerfield, which sits a distant 425 feet—or, the equivalent of 5,437 sunflower seeds—from home plate.