Inlander 01/19/2022

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our age of fires
37 SNOWLANDER Schweitzer ski patrol and 40 years of freestyling PAGE 22
Jundt showcases
The Inland Northwest has its own version of the Doomsday Vault, storing and protecting millions of seeds in case of catastrophe


The entrance to the Doomsday Vault looks like something out of a science fiction movie. A triangular slab juts out of the snowy tundra of this Norwegian island, glowing at its top by some sort of abstract, lighted mosaic. Outside the vault, not far from the North Pole, polar bears roam and the sun doesn’t shine for half the year. Inside, there’s essentially a giant safety deposit box holding 13,000 years of agricultural history. More than 1.1 million seed samples are currently held there, and the vault has the capacity for a total of 4.5 million. You can’t go inside the vault, but you can take a tour and see the door. Considering the flight to Scandinavia and the tour-led cruise to the frigid north, it won’t be cheap.

Or, you can head south to Pullman to check out the Inland Northwest’s own seed bank. That’s what staffer Samantha Wohlfeil did for this week’s cover story — DEFENDING DIVERSITY. It’s one of those surprising stories, where you learn just what goes into safeguarding our world’s food supply against the dangers of industrialized farming and climate change. So when you think of what Washington State University scientists have done for our food supply, think beyond heirloom wheat varieties and the Cosmic Crisp apple. Instead, think about the Palouse gene bank and its 100,000 different seed samples, and how it could one day save the world.

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I’m definitely bringing corn and wheat. I’ll probably bring another food. Do they need to be food?

They do not. Feel free to name any plant. Then aloe — I’m bringing aloe. It’ll be useful.

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I’d have to say beans, like any bean. I’d bring apples, and I’d have to bring a pepper with me because I can’t have food without spice.

What level of spicy?

I think Serrano-level spicy. But I might also pick habanero.


I’ll go with tomatoes, potatoes and maybe garlic. I feel like you gotta have garlic!

What kind of tomatoes?

Definitely heirloom tomatoes. They’re the best.


Pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger.

Why those three?

Because if my apocalypse doesn’t include my pumpkin spice latte it doesn’t include me.


I would bring chia seeds because I heard they’re good with water. Potatoes for sure. I’m not sure for the last one.

How about a type of tree?

A cherry tree. I love the blossoms.


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An Open Palm for Peace

A carved hand left by an ancient artist can still remind us that every effort makes a difference

Iam sitting, my back against a sandstone wall; winter sun warms my face as it makes its last journey across the sky for 2022. Around me are the leavings of families who lived on this ledge thousands of years ago. Above me, one of their hands has been pecked carefully, meticulously, into the stone.

I want to press my hand against the one in the stone. I feel that by doing so I would gain wisdom and support from my ancestors. But I don’t. I know the damage these modern hands can do, have done. So I hold the art with a stare and imprint the hand into my mind so that when I close my eyes, I’ll see it.

I have come to make prayers for the year

ahead. To rewind 2022 and to seek strength. Tomorrow, I turn 51, so the eve of a new year and a birthday have come to mean a lot to me. Have become a time for reflection, renewal. Guidance.

Iam tired. Though filled with wonderful moments, 2022 also had its share of hard times. I play back conversations. Confrontations. I see the faces of students as they told me about being in an incident in a bar

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where, celebrating this new time in their lives, they were reduced by pejoratives spoken as threats. I recall the tears of a big-hearted colleague who was injured by the words of a small-minded person whose skin gave them a sense of rightness when speaking hurtful words and pressing stereotypes. I sigh recalling conversations I had with non-Native friends and colleagues whose careless speech called for “powwows” or referred to themselves as the “low man on the totem pole,” both inaccurate and inappropriate.

I open my eyes and to a beautiful landscape, a landscape and land I am terribly in love with, and then comes the guilt. I’m not doing enough to take care of the planet. I’ll give up plastic for good this time. I’ll travel less. I’ll start eating more sustainably. Reduce my footprint. And I recall the poster I saw for the missing Navajo woman and resolve to do more for #MMIWG. I need to raise more money for Native scholarships. I should volunteer more at the local shelter. I have to participate more fully in the nonprofit boards I sit on. I should visit my mother more often. Write more letters. Drink more water. Stretch, publish, write, give, more, more, more. I have to do more.

I turn away from the landscape and lie down in the soft dirt. There, still, the hand. Over the years, I have studied what the art on these rocks might mean. I have tried to put modern thought in ancient minds and make sense. But I have given up on that. I no longer try to understand what it meant to the artist, but what it means to me. The interpretation, like the creation, becomes personal rather than universal. With that change in understanding, came a change in seeing. Now, instead of the art being placed on the rock, I see it as coming out of the rock. As if the artist’s spirit is inside the rock, pressing the hand outward.

Afew weeks ago, an elder said to me, “Everything matters or none of it does.” What could this mean about the single hand on the rock? I allow myself to see the levity I need, and the hand becomes not only the single hand raised to say, I am here, but the hand that is held up for a high-five slap. I am one. I am here. These two hands cannot do everything, but what they can do matters, and what they don’t do is even more important.

American culture presses us to believe we are not enough. We do not have enough, we do not give enough, and we do not want enough — especially from ourselves. We tend toward all or nothing thinking, go big or go home. Feel guilt when we give $5 instead of $10, feel remorse when we speak up only once for ourselves or our beliefs, get shut down when our attempts to make positive changes fail. And so often we just stop doing, stop trying, because we believe it is never enough. But all of it matters or none of it does. For me, that single hand was a message from the spirit of the stone, from my ancestors, that acknowledged me, reminded me that every effort, like every peck to make that outline, matters. As we move into this new year, in the spirit of community, I want to give you a hand. I see you. Sure, there will be challenges ahead, but thinking back to the hand, I also see it as an ancestor reaching out, saying, “I’m here for you.” And they are. And I am. And together, we embrace these hands, and walk through this year together, in beauty. n

CMarie Fuhrman is the associate director of the graduate program in creative writing at Western Colorado University, where she also directs the poetry program and teaches nature writing. She is the current Idaho Writer in Residence and author of the collection of poems, Camped Beneath the Dam, and co-editor of Cascadia Field Guide: Art, Ecology and Poetry She resides in the mountains of West Central Idaho. Visit

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I no longer try to understand what it meant to the artist, but what it means to me. The interpretation, like the creation, becomes personal rather than universal.



A string of attacks on Pacific Northwest power stations reignites concerns about grid security

America’s power stations had a rough year.

Across the country, those humming, fenced-in tangles of circuits and transformers faced bullets, fires, metal chains and a host of other destructive forces from people trying to disrupt the flow of electricity.

That type of vandalism happens every year, but in 2022, the number of attacks on power stations were higher than they’ve been in a decade. There were 108 attacks in the first eight months of the year — more than any year since 2011, which saw 123. Four of the incidents in 2022 are classified as a “cyber event,” but the rest appear to be physical attacks.

And a dozen of those attacks were in Washington.

The Department of Energy data only goes through August, so it doesn’t include recent incidents — like the Christmas Day attacks in Pierce County, which led to thousands of residents being plunged into darkness after two men attacked four substations in the early morning hours. Just a few weeks earlier, gunfire at two substations in North Carolina left 45,000 homes and businesses without power.

Even before the recent string of attacks, authorities were on the alert.

In January 2022, a Department of Homeland Security report warned that domestic terrorists had developed “credible, specific plans” to attack the nation’s electricity infrastructure.

In early December, cable TV network NewsNation obtained a memo from federal officials that described six previously unreported attacks on power stations in Oregon and Washington in November, “possibly in response to an online call for attacks on critical infrastructure.”

Two men were quickly arrested for the Christmas Day attacks in Pierce County, but according to court documents, they claimed they wanted to disrupt power in the area so they could commit a burglary. The men have been charged with “conspiracy to damage energy facilities,” a federal crime punishable by up to 20 years in prison. But there’s no mention of political ideology. And in North Carolina, authorities have yet to publicly identify any suspects or a motive.

While the reasons remain murky, the recent string of attacks has raised alarm and reignited concern about vulnerabilities in the nation’s interconnected energy grid.

“We have seen attacks such as these increase in Western Washington and throughout the country and must treat each incident seriously,” said Nicholas Brown, the U.S attorney for the Western District of Washington, in a statement earlier this month.

A review of Energy Department data didn’t show any recent attacks in Spokane or adjacent counties, though in some cases, the data doesn’t list the county where the attack occurred. And with hundreds of thousands of customers and a vast network of power infrastructure, energy providers in the Inland Northwest say they aren’t letting their guard down.

“It’s something that we certainly are aware of and watching,” says Andy Barth, a spokesperson for Inland Power and Light, which serves 13 counties in Eastern Washington and North Idaho.

Avista Utilities, the largest energy provider in the area, declined to make anyone available for an interview, citing security concerns and the sensitive nature of the subject. In an emailed statement, a spokesperson said grid security is a top priority for Avista, and that the utility company follows industry-recognized best practices for physical and cyber security.

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Attacks on power stations — popular targets for vandals and extremists — increased last year. YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

“We are aware of and following the regional and national events and working with our government partners at all levels to understand the threats and continue to align our security protections,” the statement read.


Substations are basically middlemen. They take highvoltage power from generators like dams and natural gas plants, and convert it into a lower voltage so it can be sent to homes and businesses. There are more than 55,000 substations across America. For security reasons, local utility providers declined to say how many substations they operate in the Inland Northwest.

The design varies quite a bit. While many substations have security cameras and chain link fences, they also tend to be unmanned and in remote locations.

“The big picture issue is that very large parts of the grid are out in the open and out in our forests,” says Anjan Bose, a professor with Washington State University’s School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. “There’s no people around, and they can be easily attacked.”

One manual, written and distributed by White supremacists in online chat rooms, described substations as “sitting ducks” and “worthy prey.”

Domestic extremists have long been fascinated with America’s power grid, says Devin Burghart, executive director of the Seattle-based Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights, which monitors far-right extremism.

Since at least the 1970s, neo-Nazi extremists have fantasized about widespread blackouts causing chaos and societal collapse — a breakdown of American society that

ushers in a new era of White dominance, Burghart says.

In religious terms, it’s comparable to a period of Great Tribulations or a second coming. It’s a common trope not just limited to neo-Nazis, Burghart says. Farright Boogaloo Boys, eco-terrorists and other militias have also fantasized about power grid failure. And adherents of the QAnon conspiracy will frequently reference “the Storm” — a prophesied “10 days of darkness” set off by nationwide blackouts that culminates in arrests, military tribunals and the possible execution of various liberal politicians and media figures.

Extremists will also talk about taking out the food supply, banking system or water facilities in an effort to ignite societal collapse, Burghart says. But those are difficult targets. Power stations, however, are isolated and lightly guarded. Anyone with a shotgun can cause chaos.

“It’s the maximum bang for the lowest amount of risk,” Burghart says.

In August 2021, four men connected to the neo-Nazi “Atomwaffen Division” were charged with conspiracy for planning to attack an unspecified power station. In February 2022, three men pleaded guilty to conspiring to provide material support to terrorists as part of a plot to attack American power grids. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the men had conversations about how a long-term power outage could cause war, a race war and even the next Great Depression.

Much of the discussion about power grid attacks takes place in private chat rooms on the Telegram messaging app, Burghart says, adding that the volume of chatter about the subject seems to have risen over the past year.

“We certainly are at a much higher level than I remember seeing in a long time,” Burghart says.

Not every power station attack is motivated by ideology. In many cases, the vandalism appears to be simply the result of a bored person in the forest doing target practice with a gun.

“A lot of these attacks tend to be done by vandals,” says Daniel Kirschen, a professor in the University of Washington’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. “But if you start having attacks that are more coordinated with people who want to do terrorism, that could really be a major, major issue.”

It’s happened before. Most notably in 2013, when a team of multiple gunmen opened fire on a substation in Metcalf, California, severely damaging 17 transformers and causing more than $15 million in damage. The attack, which remains unsolved, was unusually sophisticated. The former chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission described it as the “most significant incident of domestic terrorism involving the grid that has ever occurred.”

“That was really a wake-up call,” Kirschen says.


The idea of extremists destroying America’s electric infrastructure is scary for obvious reasons, but it’s important to note that power stations get damaged all the time. The culprit is rarely a neo-Nazi trying to ignite a race war — it’s often the weather, a mechanical issue or a squirrel on an ill-fated adventure.

When a substation goes down, Inland Power’s Barth says his company is generally able to avoid lengthy blackouts by diverting power from a separate substation while engineers work to repair the damage or replace equipment.

“That substation has to work a little bit harder for a

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very brief time while that affected substation is repaired,” Barth says. “We have safeguards like that in place.”

The recent attacks have been annoying and expensive, WSU’s Bose says. But the attackers don’t seem very sophisticated. He notes that the power outages caused by hurricanes far outweigh what a vandal could hope to cause by shooting up a substation.

After the string of attacks this year, regulators with FERC ordered a review of power station security standards. There’s always room for improvement, Bose says, but enhancements like concrete walls and additional backup equipment cost money. It’s a question of willingness, not feasibility.

Cybersecurity is also a growing area of concern and investment for power companies, but Bose notes that most hacks involve office computers or customer data — not the computers that control the grid itself.

While it’s not foolproof, Bose believes America’s system of reliability standards and power grid safeguards is generally pretty robust.

But it’s not invincible.

“If another country attacks, that’s a different ballgame,” Bose says.

For months, Russian forces have waged a relentless assault on Ukraine’s energy grid — firing missiles at dams, substations and power plants. In November, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky said Russian attacks had “seriously damaged” about 40 percent of the country’s electric infrastructure. It’s led to widespread rolling blackouts and millions of citizens without power. The U.S. has pledged $53 million to help Ukraine replace its damaged electric equipment.

An assault like the one in Ukraine could hypothetically cause prolonged blackouts across America, Bose says. But he notes that Russians have technical knowledge, missiles, planes and heavy duty bombs.

Thankfully, White supremacists don’t. n

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Trip Regulation

Mineful Mediation

A company plans to reopen a historic mine, but conservationists warn it will harm wildlife, and the Nez Perce Tribe says it violates treaty rights

Unpack your bags, Washingtonians may soon be taking trips much closer to home. A bill being considered this legislative session would legalize the consumption of psilocybin, the magic ingredient in “magic mushrooms.” If it passes, Washington would join Oregon and Colorado in legalizing and decriminalizing the psychedelic drug produced naturally in psilocybin mushrooms.

The 81-page Senate Bill 5263 — the Washington Psilocybin Services Wellness and Opportunity Act — would allow people over the age of 21 to experience psilocybin in authorized facilities under the supervision of licensed therapeutic professionals. Psilocybin has been used successfully to treat depression, trauma and end-of-life anxiety. Personal cultivation and consumption will still be illegal.

The bill was introduced by state Sen. Jesse Salomon, a Democrat representing Shoreline, and has 22 sponsors, including Senate Majority Leader Andy Billig, a Spokane Democrat. The Psychedelic Medicine Alliance of Washington said it believes this support is a direct result of its lobbying efforts over the summer and fall of last year.

“As for the future of this bill, we are cautiously optimistic that it will pass this year,” Tatiana Luz Quintana, the advocacy group’s co-director, said in an email.

If passed, the law would put Washington in league with Oregon and Colorado, the only other states to decriminalize the hallucinogenic compound. However, other states are considering similar psychedelic legislation, including Virginia, Missouri, Minnesota and Montana. And many cities have decriminalized its use, including Seattle; Oakland, California; and Ann Arbor, Michigan.

The bill calls for the creation of the Washington Psilocybin Advisory Board, which would consist of physicians, mental and public health professionals, representatives from local indigenous tribes, addiction specialists, researchers, mycologists, and more.

During a two-year advisory period the board would create rules, grant licenses, conduct research and generally manage the creation of a new industry. Oregon’s psilocybin bill, the Oregon Psilocybin Services Act, created a similar board, which ended its advisory period at the start of the new year and began accepting applications for service and manufacturing licenses Jan. 2.

“We’re truly standing on the shoulders of giants,” says Pat Donahue, a lawyer with Terrapin Legal, a Spokane law firm that works in psychedelic advocacy. “We’re on a lucky perch where we can not only learn from [Oregon Senate Bill] 109, but also learn from their robust regulatory framework they’ve rolled out.”

The Washington bill was introduced and assigned to the Senate Labor & Commerce Committee last week, but it still has a way to go before becoming law. Barring any major changes to the bill, psilocybin could be legal for use in September 2025. n

Alongside its plans to reopen an abandoned 80-year-old mine containing gold, silver and antimony in central Idaho’s Payette National Forest, Boise-based Perpetua Resources says it will also clean up and restore land and water at the heavily polluted Stibnite Gold Project.

The company’s project would relocate part of the East Fork of the South Fork Salmon River, which for decades has been flowing through an abandoned mining pit.

But conservation groups warn that the company would divert the river through a concrete pipe so it can access the pit and mine it several hundred feet deeper. Tons of mine waste would ultimately be stored in a headwater streambed.

“Our vision from the start has been that if we were going to redevelop this abandoned mine site for gold and the critical mineral antimony, we would have to bring solutions for the environmental legacy features that were left behind by previous operators,” says Mckinsey Lyon, a Perpetua spokesperson, by email.

In addition to rerouting the river, Lyon says, the company would repair “water quality that is degraded by millions of tons of legacy waste and tailings that were left on site. We fix these problems in the very first year of operations and continue to clean up legacy problems throughout the life of the mine.”

If approved, the site east of McCall would become the only mined source of antimony in the U.S. Antimony is used to make bullets, batteries and flame retardants, and Perpetua received a $24.8 million critical minerals award from the Department of Defense in December to help with planning and permitting.

But some say the environmental risks outweigh the potential benefits of mining those resources.

“While the mining company is presenting this as a restoration project, with a great vision for what the landscape could look like when they’re done,

our review of the actual documents raises serious concerns of whether their activities are really going to ever restore the site,” says John Robison, public lands director with the Idaho Conservation League. “It looks like mining is just going to make things worse.”

The Salmon River ultimately becomes the Snake River, which flows into Washington and joins the Columbia River. Multiple threatened species of migratory fish live in those waterways.

“What makes the project so complex is the size and scope of it, and the sensitive nature of the habitat and what lies downstream,” says Nick Kunath, conservation program manager for Idaho Rivers United. “I don’t think a mine on this site will ever make sense.”

The proposal has undergone several changes since it first filed for federal approval in 2016. On Jan. 10, the U.S. Forest Service closed a public comment period on the most recent study of environmental impacts that could result from the company’s plan.

The Forest Service received more than 15,000 comments in support of Perpetua’s efforts, with some applauding job creation and the potential to reduce reliance on other countries.

More than 3,000 comments were submitted against the proposal.

The Environmental Protection Agency identified several deficiencies in the study and called on the Forest Service to further consider air, water and land impacts.

In a Jan. 5 letter, the Nez Perce Tribe said they are “outraged” that the Forest Service picked Perpetua’s modified mine plan as the preferred alternative, despite the Tribe’s treaty rights that require protection of fishing, hunting and cultural resources.

“The Forest [Service] remains stubbornly resistant to embracing its legal duty to the Tribe because it will require denying Perpetua authorization to proceed with its project,” Nez Perce Chairman Samuel Penney says in the letter. “The Forest [Service] lacks authority to violate the Tribe’s treaty rights and must deny the project.”

The Forest Service will spend several months considering the comments and working on a final environmental impact statement before making its final decision. n

A Washington state bill would legalize psilocybin, the key ingredient in “magic mushrooms”
The Stibnite Gold Project would reopen a mine in central Idaho. IDAHO RIVERS UNITED PHOTO
Psilocybin could soon be used to treat depression and trauma.

Enshrining Access

Washington legislators seek to protect abortion rights. Plus, Spokane may get better places to park your bike, and the state’s news outlets remain (mostly) shielded

Democrats in the Washington state Senate are working on several measures to protect abortion and contraception access this legislative session. If approved, one resolution would ask voters at the next general election to amend the state’s constitution to protect the right to an abortion and the right to access contraception. Other bills proposed so far would do things like remove out-of-pocket insurance costs for abortion, block websites and apps from collecting private health data, and enhance protections for reproductive health care providers who may face legal challenges from other states. “We are working to ensure that everyone can make the choices that are best and right for them,” said state Sen. Annette Cleveland, a Democrat who represents Vancouver, in a statement about the reproductive health bills. (SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL)

What affects my energy bill in winter?


Anyone who’s tried to lock up a bike in downtown Spokane knows: It’s difficult. There aren’t a lot of options, leading to the inevitable lashing of the frame to a parking meter. This week, Spokane’s bicycle advisory board considered an update to city rules regulating two-wheel parking. Currently, the number of bike spots that must be provided is related to the number of car parking spots, the law doesn’t differentiate between short- and longterm parking, and has no design guidance. With the new rules, U-racks are preferred, and interior, long-term parking must be provided for tenants and employees in new multifamily residential, office, retail and medical buildings. Multifamily residential and industrial facilities would be exempt from providing short-term parking. Other buildings, such as airports and detention facilities, wouldn’t have to provide any bicycle parking. (NICHOLAS DESHAIS)


Washington has what’s known as a “shield law” that protects reporters from being forced to reveal confidential sources in court. Last week, an appellate court found that those journalistic protections mostly apply to a 2019 agreement between former Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich and Spokesman-Review Editor Rob Curley. Former Deputy Jeff Thurman — who was fired in 2019 after an internal investigation alleged that he made racist remarks — was trying to subpoena Curley as part of a defamation lawsuit Thurman filed against the sheriff’s office after being fired. (Thurman denies making the racist comment.) According to court documents, Knezovich reached out to Curley in 2019 and asked him to hold off on publishing anything about the investigation until it finished. The appellate court found that Washington’s law does protect Curley from disclosing documents or information relating to the agreement, but does not protect the dates and times when the discussion occurred. The decision comes a few weeks after a Superior Court jury ruled that Knezovich did defame Thurman when he announced the results of an internal investigation, and awarded Thurman $19.5 million in damages. Casey Bruner, the attorney representing the Spokesman, says the newspaper is pleased with the decision, and views it as a “step in the right direction for protecting the freedom of the press.” (NATE SANFORD)

During the winter, your energy bill can differ from one month to the next for a lot of reasons.

A sudden cold snap may occur which requires your heating system to run more frequently. Fewer daylight hours mean your lights are on for longer periods. Having kids at home for school vacations and guests stay over the holidays can affect the amount of energy you use each month, as well.

Learn what else impacts your winter bill and better manage your costs using our helpful online tools. Go to

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Lisa Taylor manages a seed bank in Pullman that holds thousands of samples of peas, beans, lentils and other important crops.

Tucked inside a nondescript building on Washington State University’s Pullman campus is a bank holding an abundance of the world’s wealth, where row after row of temperature-controlled filing cabinets store something far more precious than savings bonds or artwork: seeds.

Unlike the gold or jewels you might find tucked away in safety deposit boxes, precious heirlooms of a different type are secured here, part of a living gene bank of diverse plant material that can help safeguard the world’s food supplies against disaster.

As the only bank of its kind in Washington, and one of only 19 around the country, this facility is an integral part of an international strategy to maintain a diverse pool of plant genetics across hundreds of locations worldwide.

A better-known global version of this seed bank dubbed the “Doomsday Vault” is tunneled into the permafrost in Svalbard — a Norwegian archipelago not far from the North Pole. Opened in 2008, the Doomsday Vault holds more than a million varieties of seeds in natural cold storage, away from the looming dangers of war, climate change, energy crises and pests.

Think of that icy Nordic vault as the backup to the backup to the seed bank on the Palouse, which also has a layer of redundancy with copies of about 70 percent of its seeds stored at another gene bank in Fort Collins, Colorado. About 30 percent of the seed varieties kept in Pullman are backed up in Svalbard.

With well over 100,000 containers holding different kinds of peas, lentils, beans, lettuces, grasses, flowers and more, Pullman’s bank has one of the most diverse collections in the national system, and requires a staff of more than two dozen people to operate. In addition to shipping different seeds out to researchers and plant breeders around the world, the team also works in greenhouses and fields to constantly regenerate different crops to ensure the seeds in the fridge remain viable and genetic diversity isn’t lost to history.

Unlike the Doomsday Vault, which only stores dry seeds, Pullman’s program also maintains what are known as “clonal samples” for species that produce few true seeds, such as garlic or rhubarb.

“It is a living collection,” says Marilyn Warburton, research leader for Pullman’s program, which is part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s seed bank network. “It has to be regenerated. Things like the garlic collection, for example, are not maintained by seeds, they’re maintained by little garlic bulbs that do not store more than a year, so the entire collection has to go out into the field and come back every single year.”

With only a couple dozen crops dominating food supplies — like corn, wheat and rice — farms are becoming more vulnerable to pests and other disasters, but the bank’s heirloom crops can help researchers identify resilient alternatives. In addition to food crops, WSU’s seed bank also houses valuable forage crops for livestock, turf crops, medicinal plants and oilseeds that can be used for things like jet fuel, Warburton says.

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Seed banks around the world guard against the perils of industrialized farming and disasters. One of the most diverse banks in the U.S. can be found on the Palouse
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“This is a fantastic investment in agriculture and industry, not just food,” Warburton says. “Our seed bank can save the world every single day.”

The Pullman bank’s biodiversity work is as relevant as ever. At the United Nations Biodiversity Conference in December, governments from around the world agreed to conserve 30 percent of the world’s land and water by 2030, and incentivize biodiversity to restore species and ecosystems that are in decline by 2050. Species from bugs to birds are currently going extinct hundreds of times faster than the average rate over the past 10 million years, according to the U.N., a fact that spells disaster for the human species if things don’t change soon.

“Nature and biodiversity is dying the death of a billion cuts, and humanity is paying the price for betraying its closest friend,” U.N. Under-Secretary-General Inger Andersen told conference attendees. “Nature provides the very essence of life. Technology cannot replace the trees, the soil, the water, and the species that teem in them. We have no other world to flee to. When the web of life falls, we fall with it.”


Inside a narrow workspace on the main floor of Pullman’s seed bank, it’s easily about 75 degrees Fahrenheit on a Friday morning in early January.

The giant fridge on the other side of the wall stays cold on the inside by pumping out lots of heat, so it’s more than a little toasty as staff sit at their computer stations and use razor blades to sort and clean different batches of seeds. In the last year they shipped tens of thousands of seed packets to researchers in more than 35 countries including China, Canada, Morocco, Kazakhstan, Malaysia and more.

With her hair up in a ponytail, Lisa Taylor, the seed bank’s manager, ignores the heat and excitedly throws on a blue winter coat with the USDA Agricultural Research Service logo on it as she prepares to step into the walk-in cold storage that takes up most of the building.

Ideally, the temperature inside the seed bank is kept at about 4 degrees Celsius (about 39.2 F) with fairly low humidity, about 15 to 20 percent, to keep the seeds viable for years to decades, Taylor says.

Inside the massive refrigerator, Taylor walks down narrow aisles of cabinets, opening drawer after drawer of labeled manila envelopes and plastic containers, each containing specific seeds. One drawer holds a collection of several different lima beans from Turkey. Another holds a variety of safflower seeds.

“One of my favorite things is to show people all the different chickpeas, because in different countries they prioritize different things,” Taylor says, opening a drawer with colorful varieties. “This collection trip was obviously really cool because they got a lot of different colors — there’s green, there’s pink, there’s white-ish.”

She opens one container and dumps dozens of shriveled jet black chickpeas into her hand, and Julia Zaring, who manages the seed bank’s farm, quips that she’d be interested to see how they’d look as hummus.

While the USDA team on campus maintains the bank and fulfills research requests, Zaring

and her team are employed by WSU with federal pass-through money to do the in-field work of planting, harvesting and cleaning the seeds to replenish the stores.

“Have you ever seen lettuce seeds before?” Taylor asks with a smile, walking to a corner of the refrigerated room. She opens an envelope with seeds from the 1980s and pours hundreds of the tiny gray flecks into her hand. Sometimes the lettuce seeds are black or brown or white, and Taylor says it’s amazing to see how the teeny seeds grow into massive heads of edible greens.

Zaring’s relationship with the lettuce is a bit more complicated, as her team on the farm near the Moscow-Pullman highway has to touch every seed (each smaller than a grain of rice) to remove any traces of natural latex before they’re ready for storage.

“That white milky stuff when you break a piece off of the normal plant will harden into these orange blobs, and we have to pick all of that out,” Zaring says.

Cutting-edge equipment on the farm helps the team do some of the initial processing, but Zaring’s staff does the final cleaning and picking by hand.

Downstairs from the main cold storage is an even colder fridge kept at about minus 18 C (minus 0.4 F) where some seeds are stored for even longer periods of time.

“We put it in here especially if we know we can’t regenerate it any time soon because we want to maintain that viability until we get a chance to grow it,” Taylor says. “Or, if it’s a really sensitive one like the lettuce, every time we get a good harvest we split it up so one inventory stays here and one inventory goes into the cold room upstairs.”

Each group of one species of seeds, gathered at a specific time and place, is called an accession, and there are 101,195 different accessions at the Pullman bank.

“An accession is collected all at once, either at a market, in the wild, at a farm, or wherever it is found, and it’s all representative of one species,” Taylor says. “It might be from multiple plants, it might be one plant, or it might be considered an accession because of the uniqueness of the area and time it’s collected.”

The seed bank’s collection is divided into five categories, each with its own curator: forage legumes, such as clover and alfalfa; grasses, such as turf, rangeland, and wild species; beans (there are about 18,000 samples in this category alone); pulse crops, such as lentils and peas; and horticultural crops, which includes pretty much everything else, research lead Warburton says.

Some of the varieties in the bank are more than 50 years old and still germinate fairly successfully when tested, which often looks like placing seeds on a moist paper towel until they sprout. The curators are in charge of testing items in their part of the collection on a regular basis to figure out which crops need to be planted and harvested for a new batch of seeds next, Warburton explains.

With the industrialization of farming leading to monocropping (growing a single type of seed over a large amount of land) and a changing climate awakening new pests and increasing instances of drought or flooding, the diverse options available in the bank are critical, Taylor says.

ABOVE: Bad seeds, like some of these lentils, are separated from good seeds by hand at the farm. RIGHT: Farm Manager Julia Zaring looks through one of the thousands of envelopes kept in cold storage. BELOW: Lisa Taylor shows some of the chickpea collection. BOTTOM: Many plants are dried before their seeds are collected.

“I wish that more people understood and appreciated how important this is,” Taylor says. “Early breeders and agronomists understood how important this was and tried to sound the alarm when they would see bottlenecks and problems cropping up. But I think a lot of breeders are singularly focused and don’t really think about the broader picture of our whole food system and our environment and how this is going to affect it.”


The U.S. started collecting seeds from around the world in 1898 for diverse crop introduction, and by 1946 (after a delay caused by WWII) multiple gene banks like the one in Pullman were started to help store the country’s growing collection of plants waiting to be introduced into agriculture. The campus, at the time known as Washington State College, was chosen due to its favorable climate for storage, as the program started in a root cellar, Warburton says.

Now, seed banks like the one in Pullman provide seeds to researchers for free so that humanity as a whole can benefit and learn more about specific genes and plant traits.

For instance, research into protein-heavy varieties at the Pullman program was helpful in developing plant-based meat alternative Beyond Meat, which is largely made up of pea and fava bean protein, Warburton says.

“Farmers will face problems in the future. Consumers will want new things in the future,” Warburton says. “We don’t know what they are yet, but the solution’s in the gene bank.”

A pressing concern among food growers is that diseases and insects continue evolving, with climate change enabling some pests to migrate farther north or overwinter where they never used to, Warburton says.

“They’re expanding their range, and becoming a problem for farmers,” she says. “But there are different varieties of all the different plants that farmers grow that resist specific diseases or insects, and the genes for those can be identified and moved into new varieties, new cultivars for farmers.”

The bank and its cousins around the world aren’t just helping with research, either. The theoretical worst has already happened in places like Syria, which had to draw upon backups in the Svalbard vault to regrow many varieties once stored in Aleppo. Dedicated scientists also rushed suitcases of seeds out of the country during wartime to save their collection, Warburton says, something she learned from scientists who worked for that bank’s parent program, the International Center for Agricultural Resources in the Dry Areas, or ICARDA.

More recently, some buildings and regeneration fields that are part of a valuable seed bank in Ukraine were destroyed early last year by Russian bombing, emphasizing the need for seed backups around the world.

“Backups are really important,” says War-

burton, who co-authored a piece for CSA News, an agriculture professional magazine, last fall asking everybody to respect the world treasure in Ukraine. “As public scientists we can’t dictate policy, we can’t tell people what to do, but we can ask people to remember what’s important.”

While most of the research enabled by Pullman’s seed bank is conducted elsewhere, there is some work being done on campus.

For Alex Cornwall, a seed bank technician who is getting a doctorate in horticulture, that hands-on research has focused on checking that the various lettuce seeds in the bank match their labels.

Inside a greenhouse on the east side of campus, Cornwall — whose work boots, jeans and pullover hoodie matches the de facto uniform of team members who work in the dirt daily — walks through room after room where he is growing dozens of plants from all over the world.

Unlike the big round heads of lettuce you see in stores, many of the lettuces here have grown to the point where long stalks shoot up several feet in the air with leaves spread inches apart. One long stalk featuring dark red leaves is an African variety, Cornwall says.

While many plants turned out just as expected, others he tested turned out to be prickly thistles that are common weeds in this area.

As part of his project, Cornwall is looking for small differences in specific sections of DNA for plants of the same species, so that the identification process can be even easier and more cost effective in the future.

“It also provides more accurate descriptors and identifications for breeders who are requesting it and researchers who need it,” Cornwall says. “So when they ask for it, it’s not something completely different.”

Getting the wrong type of plant could possibly ruin a project, so the work is important.

Cornwall works under horticultural curator Barbara Hellier, who oversees the seeds for a huge variety of crops such as beets, chard, leeks,

chives, medicinal and culinary herbs, and garlic.

The garlic bulbs are kept at 14 C in a basement room near the greenhouses, because the 4 C cold storage would actually stimulate some of the varieties to start sprouting early, as that temperature mimics the winter that those species expect, Hellier says.

There are 87 varieties of allium — garlics — native to the U.S. and many of those are native to the West because they like to grow in dryland areas with rainy springs and dry summers, Hellier says.

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Farmers will face problems in the future. Consumers will want new things in the future. We don’t know what they are yet, but the solution’s in the gene bank.

Every year each of the garlic varieties get harvested, dried, cleaned and prepped for planting in the fall so they can grow until the next summer.

“It’s one of our most labor intensive collections,” Hellier says.


While all of the garlic for next year has already been planted at the seed bank’s farm on the north side of the Moscow-Pullman highway, most of the other plants won’t go in the ground until later this spring, says Zaring, the farm manager.

Some rows of soil on the farm get lined with metal cages so the team can cover certain plots with a fine mesh cloth to prevent cross-pollination, she says.

“We try very diligently to make sure that our genetics are going to stay as pure as possible,” Zaring says. “We’re trying to prevent them from crossing with wild relatives.”

Meanwhile, some crops need to be grown on other USDA farms maintained in Central Ferry (where state Route 127 crosses the Snake River south of Dusty) and Prosser, depending on the conditions they thrive in and how far apart they need to be planted to prevent crosspollination, she says.

Multiple buildings on the Pullman farm are filled with equipment that’s key to the harvest, storage and cleaning of the seeds. A decades-old thresher sits in the shop outside Zaring’s office. A room in the next building holds dozens of paper and mesh bags of drying plants waiting to be harvested for seed.

As Zaring walks into the seed-cleaning room, two workers meticulously pick through lentils on rubber platters, using a piece of metal to push aside any twigs

or broken, cracked or shriveled pieces to be tossed out, while keeping the healthy mature seed.

A ’70s-era blower in the room can do part of that work, pushing just enough air through a tube containing the seeds to remove many of the smallest broken pieces and lighter twigs, while the better lentils float in the air closer to the bottom before settling into a container.

A tool by the window nicknamed the “gravity deck,” meanwhile, enables the staff to swap out differenttextured plates to sort bad seeds from the good. Vibration moves seeds up or down each plate depending on the texture — the plates range from fuzzy felt to mirror smooth metal — and the pieces fall into channels for further picking, Zaring says.

For each plot that’s planted on the farm, Zaring’s team plants about 100 seeds. There may be multiple plots for each type of crop.

“Beyond that you’re not going to get much more

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genetic diversity,” she says.

In recent years, the program has started replanting old varieties of seeds that her team has never dealt with before, so they also have to figure out how best to grow, process and clean them.

“This has been an ongoing process for the last 70plus years,” Zaring says. “Sometimes we’re making up the rules.”

As someone whose dad used to farm wheat in the area that went to Anheuser-Busch for beer production, Zaring says it’s great to see the connection with her current work at the bank and know that many related crops are now grown around the world.

“A lot of the cultivars come from the genetics in our seed bank and have been bred from our seed bank. It’s really cool to know that things my dad used to grow were started here,” Zaring says. “We do really cool work.” n

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Many seeds are planted on the banks’ farm near campus, which boasts views of Moscow Mountain.
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The Schweitzer Ski Patrol is bucking trends with a dozen women keeping the slopes safe for everyone

Things were different around Schweitzer when Arlene Cook was hired as a liftie in 1980. The mountain had recently changed its name from Schweitzer Basin to simply Schweitzer. There were only fixed-grip double chairs servicing the uncrowded slopes. Where there now sits a village, there was only a day lodge. When Arlene moved over to ski patrol from ski school in 1981, she was the only female in their midst.

In those days, ski patrol was a strictly maledominated affair, and the fact that she had even cracked into their ranks was a minor miracle. What really helped Cook get through the door was the fact that she was a born and bred local, Sandpoint through and through. The head of ski patrol at the time was the now legendary John Pucci, who was also from the area and very much a local.

Cook had her work cut out for her to survive in a male-dominated industry, but survive she did. And now, some 42 years later, she’s 11 years into leading that same patrol at Schweitzer, but the numbers have certainly changed. These days, the once “boys club” is teeming with hard-working women.


Several years ago, when I was out in the early and dark hours of the morning following patrollers around the mountain as they were doing explosives work in the interest of public safety, it dawned on me that the entire team I was shadowing was composed of women. That got me to wondering about the history of females in ski patrol and how that may have changed over the years.

As a younger man, I seemed to recall that ski patrol was a bit of a fraternity full of macho dudes sporting big mustaches and even bigger egos. Was that really true? Was it really a boys’ club? If so, how did we get from there to here where the ski patrol director of the biggest mountain in the area is a woman — and not only that, but she’s also leading a patrol that is nearly half women. Nationally the percentage of female ski patrollers is around 28 percent, so Schweitzer is ahead of the curve.

The average ratio of male to female patrollers isn’t really that surprising when one considers the lopsided number of males to females actively involved in snow sports. The statistics vary a bit depending where you look, but snow sport par-

ticipants generally seem to be about 60/40 male to female. So while the national average of female ski patrollers is significantly under this average, Schweitzer’s ratio comes in around 39 percent, which falls right in line with the average snow sports enthusiast ratio.

Is this higher-than-average ratio somehow due to the fact that they have a female patrol director? Cook assured me this is not the case, stating clearly, “I simply hire the best person for the job.”

The number of women on the Schweitzer Ski Patrol began to grow slowly at first through the ’80s and ’90s, and when Sarah Yancey joined around 2000 she recalls being the fourth woman in the fold. While this was certainly an increase in the ratio, she also recalls thinking that she was hired as part of a package deal along with her husband, Mark, when they moved to the area after having been on patrol at Crystal Mountain.

Even though Yancey came on as part of that package deal, she felt welcomed from the beginning and expressed that the men on ski patrol “were extremely supportive and especially compassionate” when she later became pregnant. Perhaps that early support helped pave the way for what would become a more evenly mixed group in the future.

Not one to shy away from a challenge, Sarah and Mark have operated a backcountry ski operation in Canada, Boulder Adventures, for more than two decades all while she has maintained her job as a patroller — and a mom. When I asked Yancey why she thinks the number of women in ski patrol has increased, she answers simply: “Everyone loves having more women involved.”


For the women on ski patrol, one thing isn’t any different from the men, and that is the need to have a different job in the off-season. Strangely enough, both Cook and Yancey spent time over the years as landscapers as well as working for the Forest Service. With the growth of Schweitzer into a year-round operation, Cook now considers herself lucky to be able to hold the position of patrol director all year, as she oversees the summertime patrol staff in their work keeping mountain biking, hiking and sightseeing safe and fun on the mountain. Among the other women on their patrol, there are doctors, farmers, nurses, firefighters, raft guides, bartenders and much more.

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One of the younger generation of female patrollers to now call Schweitzer home is Leigh Bercaw, who followed her heart to move to Sandpoint from Colorado in 2015. Bercaw considers herself a Midwesterner at her core, going so far as to say she never would have left Minnesota if it just had mountains.

Perhaps it’s those roots that enable her to not only be successful as a patroller but to have created a full-time job for herself farming. In her role as owner/operator of Blue Fingers Farm, Bercaw now grows and sells gourmet salad greens to local restaurants. In addition, she and two partners, one who is also a female patroller at Schweitzer, sell sourdough breads and ferments at local farmers markets and specialty stores.

Despite her fairly obvious work ethic and drive, Bercaw still feels a bit of resistance as a female patroller, noting that when she arrives on an accident scene some patients seem occasionally confused or surprised at the idea of being “saved” by a woman. As part of the growing number of women on the Schweitzer patrol, Bercaw is grateful for those who paved the way before her and also excited to be a part of creating a future environment in which people will no longer be confused or surprised when a female patroller shows up simply to do her job.


While gains have been made for women on patrol, all the women I spoke with seemed to convey a sense that people often still look at them with a bit of surprise for doing the same job as a man. That attitude is a bit sad in light of the fact that, when I asked Cook who works harder between the men and the women, she says,

perhaps a bit tongue in cheek, “the women, because they have to prove themselves.” It seems almost certain that these hard-working women of ski patrol will eventually be looked at just the same as the men.

These days, the slopes at Schweitzer are almost entirely serviced by high-speed three-, four- and even six-person chairlifts. Where the day lodge was once the only building, there are now hotels, condominiums, restaurants and stores, creating a mountaintop village. Back in the day, almost every skier would be from Sandpoint, Coeur d’Alene or Spokane; today, one might share the chairlift with riders from Seattle, Colorado, Texas, or even Europe or Asia.

While not everyone is excited about all of the changes on the hill through the years, I think we can certainly all agree that 12 female patrollers on the staff instead of one is a big improvement. We should just be thankful they’re working their hardest to keep us all safe. n

John Grollmus is a lifetime resident of the Inland Northwest, local restaurateur and backcountry ski guide. He loves all things outdoors, food of every kind and, more than almost anything, skiing. John can currently be found living with his wife and favorite human, Kim, near Hope, Idaho.

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A legendary bunch of freestylers reconvene 40 years after their high-flying, globetrotting youth

Last February, a tight-knit group of some of my freestyle skiing family got together for a reunion at Schweitzer. These were the guys I spent years with, competing against and performing side by side of them in aerial acrobatic freestyle skiing shows. Our hair may be a little… OK, a lot grayer, and our bodies ache and our ski skills may have slowed down a bit, but our bond is inseparable.

“As we get older, it’s the times with longtime friends is what I cherish,” said Chuck Heidenreich, a former member of the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team, who came out from Pittsburgh to join the reunion. “Every time we get together, it’s like we were never apart. They’re family.”

This was a solid crew of talent from the freestyle skiing world, starting with Bob Howard, Lane and Yale Spina, all from Reno, then Chuck, and Dan Herby and myself from Coeur d’Alene.

“This is a pretty stacked crew,” said Heidenrich. “You have world champions, national champions and a two-time medaling Olympian.”

In our younger years, our mentor was Bob Howard who’s five years older than most of us. Howard started his freestyle career in the mid-1970s, the early days of what was once called hot dog skiing. Howard progressed the sport of ballet skiing to have a more gymnastic type of flair, with flips and double and triple spins. His stunt and grunt attitude earned him three consecutive world championship titles in 1980, ’81 and ’82. He walked away and retired from World Cup competition in 1982.

“The mantra in the early ’70s was, he who has the most fun wins,” says Howard. “I understood that concept, but I resisted. Then I discovered freestyle ski shows, and it was fun again.”

Howard coached all of us on snow and on a revolving ski deck, and then he started weaving us into the fold of indoor ski shows in 1983. If you could do ballet on the revolving ski deck, jump on a trampoline or go off the artificial ski jump into an airbag, the ski show life was good, especially since it paid decently for a ski bum.

By 1984, several of us spent about eight months traveling,

The man who started it all, Bob Howard.

competing and performing freestyle skiing at shows. Our season would typically start off in September, where we’d perform ramp and tramp shows most every weekend at consumer trade ski shows, fairs and even a few NFL halftimes. That schedule kept us busy all the way to early December when we’d return home for just a few weeks to get our affairs in order. And then we were off to Europe right after Christmas for the World Cup competition.

By the mid-’80s, most of us retired from competition and started traveling with Howard, performing in the Volvo Ski Shows. Howard was instrumental in producing these shows, which consisted of freestyle jumps and ballet at ski resorts across Europe, North America and Japan. We’d typically return home in mid-April to enjoy a few months of summer. By midsummer, we’d hit the road again for a few weeks here and there, doing shows in South America, Australia and New Zealand. We were traveling, working and living together almost year-round.

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Still looking good at Schweitzer last February. BOB LEGASA PHOTO


Lane Spina was the only one who opted out of the ski show route and continued competing on the World Cup level all the way into the early ’90s. His perseverance and drive earned him two Olympic medals, one in 1988 at the Calgary Winter Olympics, and the other in the 1992 Olympics in Albertville, France. Finally, after 10 years on the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team, Lane retired and focused on his future, earning his engineering degree.

Freestyle skiing consumed our lives throughout the ’80s, and by the mid-’90s we had all moved on, focusing on the next chapters of our lives. Over the next 20 years, we’d stay in touch though we only got together a few times.

When I turned the big Six-O, I realized that we have more road behind us than in front of us. This made me take a hard look at the things that are important in my life: my family and my friends. These guys are my brothers, and we’ve been through a lot together. With time being the enemy, we needed to get the band back together again. After a few emails and some phone calls, airline tickets were booked for a Freestyle Reunion Weekend at Schweitzer.

The stoke was intensifying as we got closer to the weekend. I told the boys: We’re going to do a skiing photo shoot when you’re here, just like the old days, so bring some bright-colored clothing.

The first day we were blessed with bluebird skies. I made the executive decision to shoot photos that day, because when you get blue skies, you take full advantage. It was pretty funny listening to the chatter as these 60-year-old guys were suiting up for the photo shoot, like they were in the minor leagues and they just got called up to the Bigs. Lane even busted out his Olympic Team outfit from the ’88 Olympics.

When I pointed the camera at this group of has-beens, they were right back and on track, focused on getting the shot just

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FROM LEFT: Yale Spina, Bob Legasa, Lane Spina, Dan Herby, Chuck Heidenreich and Bob Howard.

like the old glory days. Their skiing skills and ski stamina were still spot on. You can thank modern technology for some of that, as a few of the guys had some after-market parts installed a few years back.

For the next three days we skied hard from bell to bell, wrapping up the day at Taps with a few cold ones. Après was filled with lots of laughs, the same old stories, and a bond that grew even tighter.

Bob Howard summed up the weekend the best: “Back in the ’80s, we were all sporting the mullet, business in the front and party in rear. I saw that same mullet attitude this weekend, when we’re all together. Ski your best for the camera, but once we leave the hill, it’s time to let the good times roll and relive those glory days.”

The tight-knit friendship with this group, I hope it will never change. The only change I foresee will be in the stories, because… The older I get, the better I was. n

Bob Legasa has been a Snowlander contributor to the Inlander since 1994. He’s also a Hayden-based independent videographer, TV producer and snowsports event promoter with his Freeride Media company.

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Lane Spina (left) on the Olympic podium in Calgary for Freestyle.



Hike through the forested trails of Mount Spokane with a headlamp to light your way. Fee includes: snowshoes, poles, headlamps, instruction, guides and transportation. Meet at Yoke’s in Mead.

Jan. 27, 12-9:30 pm and Feb. 24, 12-9:30 pm. $31. Mt. Spokane State Park, 26107 N. Mt. Spokane Park Dr. (509755-2489)


Bring your dogs to the mountain and let them run around on the lower trail system. All dogs must be accompanied by their human who has a pass or lift ticket. Jan. 28, 9 am-3:30 pm, Feb. 17, 9 am3:30 pm and March 25, 9 am-3:30 pm. $5-$82. 49 Degrees North, 3311 Flowery Trail Rd. (509-935-6649)



Teams of two, one adult and one child (12 and under), can participate in human snow bowling. The child sits on a saucer and is pushed toward 10 inflatable bowling pins. Top three bowlers get a prize and adults can treat themselves to a brew on the back deck. Jan. 29, 1 pm. $5-$73. Lookout Pass Ski & Recreation Area, I-90 Exit 0. (208-744-1301)


A safe and supportive environment for all ability levels of skiers and snowboarders to develop new skills lift ticket or pass required to participate in lesson. Jan. 29, 1-3 pm and Feb. 12, 1-3 pm. $69. 49 Degrees North, 3311 Flowery Trail Rd. (509-935-6649)



49 Degrees North Mountain Resort hosts this rail jam in the streets of Chewelah. Competition classes include: men’s ski, women’s ski, men’s snowboard and women’s snowboard. Feb. 4, 3 pm. $20. Chewelah,


This fourth annual event takes place in downtown Chewelah and includes activities such as a skijor demo, a rail jam and a chili cookoff. Feb. 4, 10 am-6 pm. Prices vary. Chewelah,

Mt. Spokane Is open for fun

Day & night

9am–4pm, SundaYS–Tuesdays 9am–9pm, Wednesdays–Saturdays All day tickets include nights. night ski, 3pm–9pm, only $36
Holiday hours vary. Visit us online for full operating calendar and to purchase tickets. JANUARY 19, 2023 INLANDER 31
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Take a guided cross-country skiing trip through the woods at Mount Spokane and enjoy a made-fromscratch meal of lasagna, salad, breadsticks and more afterward. Fee includes skis, boots, poles and dinner. Feb. 4, 6-9 pm and March 4, 6-9 pm. $51. Selkirk Lodge, N. Mt. Spokane Park Dr. (509-755-2489)


Take a guided snowshoeing trip through the woods at Mount Spokane and enjoy a made-fromscratch meal of lasagna, salad, breadsticks and more afterward. Fee includes snowshoes, headlamps, poles and dinner. Feb. 4, 6-9 pm and March 4, 6-9 pm. $51. Selkirk Lodge, N. Mt. Spokane Park Dr. (509-755-2489)


lower trail systems with singletrack downhill sections, conditions permitting. Registration starts at 9:30 am, race starts at 11 am. Feb. 19, 9:30 am. $20. 49 Degrees North, 3311 Flowery Trail Rd. (509-935-6649)


Take a tour of Mount Spokane while snowshoeing 2-3 miles through forested trails. After, head to Hierophant Meadery on Green Bluff for an educational tasting of some of Washington’s finest meads. Fee includes: snowshoes, poles, trail fees, instruction, guides and transportation. Meet at Yoke’s in Mead. Jan. 8, Feb. 19 and March 19 from 9 am-2:30 pm. Feb. 19, 9 am-2:30 pm and March 19, 9 am-2:30 pm. $47. Mt. Spokane State Park, 26107 N. Mt. Spokane Park Dr. spokanerec. org (509-755-2489)


Tour the trails of 49 Degrees North with a guide who gives tips leading to better control and more fun on your snowshoes. Fee includes: snowshoes, poles, trail pass, instruction, guides and lunch! Meet at 49 Degrees North Nordic Area Yurt 3311 Flowery Trail Rd. Feb. 5, 10 am-2 pm, Feb. 25, 10 am-2 pm and March 11, 10 am-2 pm. $45. 49 Degrees North, 3311 Flowery Trail Rd. (509-755-2489)


A clinic led by the best instructors on the mountain. The day begins with coffee and stretching followed by ski instruction, lunch and a social hour. Feb. 10, 8:30 am-2:30 pm and March 10, 8:30 am-2:30 pm. $129. Mt. Spokane Ski & Snowboard Park, 29500 N. Mt. Spokane Park Dr. mtspokane. com/ladiesday (509-238-2220)


A 2-3 mile snowshoe tour through the woods of Mount Spokane State Park. Afterward, head to Big Barn Brewery on Green Bluff to learn about their locally crafted beer and enjoy beverages to end the day. Fee includes: snowshoes, poles, trail fees, instruction, guides and transportation. (Beverages not included) Jan. 15, Feb. 18 and March 5 from 9 am-2:30 pm. Feb. 18, 9 am-2:30 pm and March 5, 9 am-2:30 pm. $47. Big Barn Brewing Co., 16004 N. Applewood Ln. (509-755-2489)


A seven-kilometer race on the


Ski or snowboard surrounded by University of Idaho alumni. Wear Vandals logos, colors or your favorite Vandals jersey. Feb. 24, 9 am-4 pm and Feb. 25, 9 am-4 pm. $55$73. Lookout Pass Ski & Recreation Area, I-90 Exit 0. (208-744-1301)


Carry your spouse across snowy terrain and win their weight in cash. Must have a lift ticket or season pass to participate. Feb. 25, 2 pm. Lookout Pass Ski & Recreation Area, I-90 Exit 0. (208-744-1301)


The slopes become an immersive 3-D storytelling visual experience projected directly onto the mountain while pro skiers and riders throw down. After the main event, enjoy music, fireworks and an after party to close out the day. Feb. 25, 9 am-3:30 pm. Free. Schweitzer, 10,000 Schweitzer Mountain Rd. (208-263-9555)


This moderate ramble leads snowshoers around the shoulder of Antoine Peak past slopes of coniferous forests and a historic fire pond. Fee includes snowshoes, poles, instruction, guides and transportation. Schedule subject to change due to snow conditions. Meet at Safeway parking lot at 8851 E. Trent. Feb. 25, 10 am-3 pm. $35. Antoine Peak Conservation Area, (509-7552489)

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Knowing Me, Knowing You

Celebrity conductor Leonard Slatkin hopes to become fast friends with the Spokane Symphony and its audience

To what do we owe the honor of having internationally acclaimed conductor Leonard Slatkin lead the Spokane Symphony in two performances at the orchestra’s home venue?

Or maybe the question should be to whom “I was at a dinner one night after an opera with my friend Tom Hampson,” Slatkin recalls, “and he just happened to ask me, ‘Would you go to Spokane and conduct?’”

Having spent his formative years in Spokane, Hampson clearly maintains a soft spot for the city where he cultivated the vocal talents that would propel him to the upper echelons of the classical and operatic world. And Slatkin, who’s as renowned for his musical advocacy as his professional accomplishments with first-class outfits like the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, admits to harboring a “curiosity of going to places like [Spokane]” to survey the musical landscape outside of the major metropolitan powerhouses.

So he readily agreed.

“These days, now that I’m not a music director anywhere, I’m enjoying going and conducting orchestras that I haven’t seen before and to get a better picture of what musical life is like in the United States right now,” Slatkin says.

Renowned maestro Leonard Slatkin next waves his baton in Spokane. LEWEL LI PHOTO

“What’s the relationship of the boards to the members of the orchestra and to the public? Is the public turning out to hear music like they used to? All those are things I’m interested to find out.”

There’s also a not-so-secret ulterior motive to that line of inquiry. Slatkin’s fact-finding forays to cities like ours might very well inform a sequel to his 2012 book Conducting Business: Unveiling the Mystery Behind the Maestro

“I do a lot of writing now,” he chuckles, adding that two books of his are in the publication pipeline at this very moment. There’s also his website’s online journal, where Slatkin has been providing regular updates, musings and extensive biographical insights for the better part of 15 years.

The relatively frequent guest spots with a variety of orchestras have likewise honed his technique for planning a program. For the Spokane Symphony’s Masterworks 5 concert — titled, simply and definitively, “Slatkin” — on Jan. 21 and 22, he has three pieces lined up: Cindy McTee’s Double Play, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Francesca da Rimini, Op. 32 and Johannes Brahms’ Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68.

“In a way, the first consideration is, what kind of a program can I do with an orchestra that I don’t know? I have several works that I kind of do when I see an orchestra for the first time. These three fall into that category. Do they really fit together? Actually, it works, but not thematically. Just musically,” he says.

McTee’s compositions, in particular her 1990 work Circuits, have been a staple of Slatkin’s guest program with a number of orchestras. In Spokane, there’s an arguable geographic link for her Double Play, given that the composer originally hails from the SeaTac area. But it doesn’t hurt that she’s also married to the maestro.

“Not only do we have the Washington connection, but I keep the royalty stream moving,” Slatkin says wryly. “But I wouldn’t do it unless she was not anything less than a fantastic composer. And she is. She writes so many works that are perfect for opening concerts. One of her signatures is presenting jazzlike rhythms and harmonies but using classical music as the basis for it.”

Tchaikovsky’s Francesca da Rimini, by contrast, was inspired by literature — Dante’s Inferno, to be exact — in which a character of the same name finds herself in hell as a result of the passions that compelled her to commit adultery. Her tale was based on a real-life noblewoman.

“It’s a work that used to be played quite frequently, and you don’t hear it very often anymore. It’s a great showpiece for an orchestra, and with all the notes that are in it, a challenge as well. But, that being said, it’s a really good piece for me to get to know an orchestra,” he says.

“It was a common work in the 1930s and ’40s to find in motion picture serials. This was one of those pieces that would pop up in Flash Gordon and Captain Marvel when they didn’t have original music. And to me it represents one of [Tchaikovsky’s] finest works for orchestra.”

The Brahms symphony that closes the concert is better known than the works in the first half, an intentional choice on Slatkin’s part.

“Because the majority [of musicians] will know it, even though some will not have played it before perhaps, there is a degree of familiarity. That gives me an opportunity to get a better handle on the orchestra itself. I’ll know where they are very quickly when we play it through. And this is a perfect program for that purpose,” he says.

Aside from getting to know the orchestra in record time during his Spokane visit, Slatkin also has several opportunities to become better acquainted with its audiences — and vice versa. A registration-only educational lecture and soundcheck is scheduled for the evening of Thursday, Jan. 19. At noon on Friday, the maestro reads from his print works at the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture. And Masterworks & Mimosas on Saturday morning offers a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the final stages of his rehearsal process with the Spokane Symphony. And on top of that, Slatkin hosts pre-concert lectures prior to each Masterworks performance. n

Spokane Symphony Masterworks 5: Slatkin • Sat, Jan. 21 at 7:30 pm; Sun, Jan. 22 at 3 pm • $19-$68 • The Fox Theater • 1001 W. Sprague Ave. •

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One of the most anticipated manga-to-anime adaptations just wrapped its first season, so go binge CHAINSAW MAN in its entirety! In true action anime fashion, the premise is a bit bizarre (but totally worth checking out). Denji, a teen boy living on the streets with his demon dog pal, Pochita, finds himself reborn with new superpowers passed on by said dog — he can now transform into a merciless killing machine with chainsaws for arms and a huge, lethal blade coming out of his head. As part of an elite squad of government-sanctioned devil hunters, Denji and crew are tasked with stopping evil incarnate in the form of the elusive Gun Devil. The quirky team tempers the grimness of their profession with lots of crassness, cigarettes and an all-too-fitting devil-maycare attitude. It’s all backed by gorgeous cinematic animation from one of anime’s greatest studios, MAPPA. (CHEY SCOTT)

Drew Timme has a chance to cement his legacy as the best player in Gonzaga history this year. He’s closing in on the program’s all-time scoring record, and without him the Zags — who seem determined to squeak out every win — might not even have a winning record.

But man… Timme’s free throw shooting this season has been rough

After shooting nearly 70 percent two seasons ago, his percentage at the line has dipped to a cringe-inducing 61.5 percent. This is an issue, because his inside game means he’s among the leaders in the country in getting to the line. And while it’s been tough to watch for Zags fans, it’s also very evident that stepping to the line makes Timme miserable — he wears it on his bearded/mustachioed face as he takes deep, closed-eyes sighs before each attempt.

You can still be a star hooper while having woes from the charity stripe — just look at Shaquille O’Neal and Giannis Antetokounmpo — but my suggestion is that Timme should take the radical step that no star player has dared to take.

It’s time to shoot underhanded free throws, Drew. The conversation around shooting underhanded free throws begins with former NBA MVP Rick Barry. Using an underhand free throw motion, the Hall of Fame forward ranks fourth in NBA history with a career 89.9 free throw percentage. In retirement, Barry has often offered to teach the style to star bigs who struggle at the line. The mechanics of the shoot and one fluid motion are easier to repeat on a consistent basis — and consistency is crucial to the mentally taxing job of shooting free throws.

One would think that these hyper-competitive athletes would jump at the offer as they typically take every advantage to maximize their scoring totals and win games. One would be wrong

Here’s the thing: Underhanded free throws are “uncool.” Because in the early days of basketball young girls tended to shoot underhanded due to lack of arm strength, the toxic masculinity of the sports world solidified around the idea that the shot style was weak and feminine (they’re also often called “granny style” shots).

NBA icon Wilt Chamberlain — a career 51.1 percent free-throw shooter shot underhanded for one season in 1961-62. It was his greatest statistical season, averaging a still NBA record 50.4 points per game while shooting a career-best 61.3 percent from the stripe, including famously notching the league’s only 100 point game (which only happened because he was 28-32 from the foul line that night). And then… he went back to shooting overhand the next season. In his autobiography he wrote: “I felt silly, like a sissy, shooting underhanded. I know I was wrong. … I just couldn’t do it.” Shaq was the same way, once saying, “I told Rick Barry I’d rather shoot 0 percent than shoot underhand. I’m too cool for that.” Both legends were literal giants trying to act tough, but, really, their fragile male egos couldn’t handle it.

Drew Timme would be the perfect player to take on Rick Barry’s underhanded free throw legacy. He’s notably not living on social media, and always seems to be ready to crack a joke on court even during tense contests. He fits the vibe.

Even as much as it could improve his game on the court, it could even be a bigger boon off the court. Timme’s already a darling of the NIL advertising rule (for more read last week’s cover feature, presumably written by a really cool dude), but can you imagine how much extra ad money he could bring in by further standing out from the pack by swishing granny-style free throws? Heck, he might want to come back to GU for a sixth year just to cash those checks. n


On Netflix’s new cooking competition show PRESSURE COOKER, chefs from around the country compete over eight episodes for the chance at a $100,000 prize. With chefs within the show’s communal house judging each other’s cooking, the drama builds as some choose strategic ways to befriend or betray their fellow chefs to avoid getting voted out. One of the notable competitors is Jeana Pecha, who previously cooked at multiple Spokane restaurants including Vieux Carré, where she was executive chef before leaving for California to start her own restaurant. The show has been listed in Netflix’s top 10 streaming choices, and is sure to keep you guessing who will ultimately take home the prize. (SAMANTHA



Noteworthy new music arriving in stores and online on Jan. 20.

JOHN CALE, MERCY. The avantgarde multi-instrumentalist legend of the Velvet Underground puts out his first original collection of tunes in a decade with the help of Animal Collective, Weyes Blood, Dev Hynes and other eclectic modern standouts.

WE ARE SCIENTISTS, LOBES. It’s still unclear why the American indie rock band is so much bigger in the UK than stateside, but don’t let dwelling on that divert from shaking your hips to the danceable new tunes like “Operator Error.”

GUIDED BY VOICES, LA LA LAND. Releasing an album in January makes sense for the overly prolific indie rockers, because it means the group still has time to put out four or five more before 2023 ends (this one is GBV’s 37th). (SETH SOMMERFELD)

half-joking plea for Drew Timme to use... underhanded tactics... at the free throw line
Lower, Drew! Lower! ERICK DOXEY PHOTO

From the Ashes

“Facing Fire” exhibit at Gonzaga’s Jundt Art Museum explores humanity’s growing familiarity with wildfires

Norma I. Quintana is no stranger to fire. She and her family lost their home five years ago as wildfires ravaged Northern California.

“I remember the exact date,” says Quintana, a Puerto Rican-American photographer based out of Napa, California. “Oct. 8, 2017.”

Symbolically, fire can represent passion, ambition and unpredictability. But for many, like Quintana, its dancing flames mean unprecedented loss, unbridled fear or even death.

Fire is reflected in such myriad perspectives in the Jundt Art Museum’s new exhibition, “Facing Fire: Art, Wildfire, and the End of Nature in the New West,” on loan from the California Museum of Photography. From depicting flames as an omen to a destructive force, each of the show’s 14 artists, including Quintana, reflect how fire has personally impacted their life.

The fires that began burning across California in fall 2017 became one of the deadliest wildfire events of the past century in the U.S. The natural disaster took the lives of 44 people and hospitalized about 192 others — and destroyed countless homes and buildings spread across 210,000 acres.

When Quintana and her family initially evacuated, she firmly believed she’d return to a home that was still standing strong.

“It was such a crushing feeling,” she recalls. “It felt like war. Like we had come back and a missile had landed on our home.”

Sharing exhibition space with Quintana, and the other artists featured in “Facing Fire,” is Samantha Fields whose interest in depicting disaster started when her grandfather’s house was destroyed by a tornado during childhood.

“I was haunted by that,” Fields says. “Terrified. But, seeing images of them was so fascinating to me.”

After a chance encounter with a wildfire while on a road trip, Fields added fires to her list of fascinations.

At first glance, Fields’ pieces in the exhibition appear to be stunning photographs of wildfires. Move in a bit closer and it becomes apparent that her canvases are stacked with layer upon layer of airbrushed acrylic paint. So smooth, it’s hard to differentiate her work from the photography presented in the exhibition.

Each of the 48 painted canvases, arranged in a grid formation, features a depiction of a dif-

ferent wildfire that Fields has captured over the past 15 years.

“Fire is such a normal part of our lives now,” Fields says. “I’ve lived long enough to see it get worse. Raising awareness about climate change is why I choose to depict these ideas of survival and destruction.”

Quintana’s canvases are also presented in a grid, but the ways in which the artists have chosen to express their interactions with fire are vastly different. Fields’ work shows the devastation of burning hillsides in progress while Quintana’s shows the devastation that comes after the flames and out of the ashes.

“I didn’t want to take photos of the burned site of my home,” Quintana recalls. “I never wanted to do that. I wanted to capture an image that spoke to the memory of the event.”

Once the smoke cleared, Quintana’s documentarian instincts kicked in. The Atlas Peak fire that took her home also incinerated her photography studio and all of the cameras within it. All she had left was her cell phone.

“The first responders gave us gloves and sieves,” she says. “We started going through our scorched belongings.”

After literally sifting through the contents of her house, Quintana collected the recovered remnants of her life and did what she has always done: captured memories.

Being a film-only photographer, she deviated from her norm in order to create the digital photos displayed in “Facing Fire.”

Quintana took the salvaged items, placed them on top of a used, ashen glove, and began taking top-down photos with her iPhone.

Each photo of Quintana’s is framed the same way, but the objects featured range from the husks of camera bodies once used to capture circus performers, remnants of jewelry that hung around the photographer’s neck, and even the charred pages of Quintana’s passport. She describes the process as birthing past memories, like an archaeologist on an excavation site far, far away.

Quintana and her family were displaced for three months while they picked up the pieces of what remained, dealt with the loss and processed the trauma of the events that had occurred.

“After the fire, people would tell me ‘Well, at least you have your life,’” Quintana recalls. “But these objects once collectively made up what I called home. Fire took that from me.” n

“Facing Fire: Art, Wildfire, and the End of Nature in the New West” • Jan. 21-May 13, open Mon-Sat from 10 am-4 pm • Free • Jundt Art Museum • 200 E. Desmet Ave. •

Norma I. Quintana’s images of the Atlas Peak fire’s aftermath.



Remembering the legacy of the late chef Rod Jessick, who helped transform the Coeur d’Alene Resort into a top dining destination

If you’ve ever enjoyed a Gooey dessert at Dockside, the melt-in-your-mouth orange rolls at Beverly’s, or one of the extravagant events put on year-round at the Coeur d’Alene Resort, you’ve experienced the legacy of longtime chef Rodney Walter Jessick.

Although Chef Rod, as he was known, retired in 2021 as executive chef from Hagadone Hospitality, which also owns the resort convention center, world-class golf course, numerous North Idaho restaurants and additional hotels, his impact has outlasted his 37 years in that capacity. In fact, his position has yet to be filled.

That loss was compounded by the recent announcement of Jessick’s death at Spokane’s Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center on Nov. 23, 2022, from complications of early onset Alzheimer’s and heart failure. He was 68.

Like many chefs before him, Jessick’s interest in cooking can be traced to family, and his origins in the industry traced to the dishpit. In an interview for a 2019 Idaho Senior Independent article, Jessick explained how he’d broken his mother’s mixer, and got a job where she worked at the former Pagoda Café in Post Falls to pay her back.

“My mother could have been called a chef then,” said Jessick, who, within a few weeks, found himself cooking during the graveyard shift.

“I learned to work hard,” said Jessick, who was more interested in art than cooking as a young adult, and fondly remembers visiting the Crescent department store windows in Spokane as a youngster. Nonetheless, he

traded his dreams of art college for a career that would bring him to the pinnacle of the culinary arts, including representing Idaho at the prestigious James Beard Foundation in 1999.

“Sometimes your career picks you,” he said.

When Jessick learned through a friend in 1973 that the lounge at the North Shore Resort in Coeur d’Alene was hiring, he applied and got the job. He was all eyes during that year, watching and learning, but that wasn’t enough. He asked if he could come in on his own to learn more involved techniques, like making roux.

Jessick’s diligence paid off. When a banquet chef position opened, he got the job and worked his way up, literally and figuratively. Soon he was a chef at the former Cloud Nine, located on the seventh floor and which became famous for its broasted chicken dinner. One of his proudest moments, said Jessick, was having his mother and grandmother as guests there. Another significant moment was saving a choking restaurant guest’s life, Jessick recalled.

In 1986, the North Shore closed for remodel, and Jessick accompanied Hagadone Hospitality founder Duane Hagadone on travels to reimagine dining for what would become The Coeur d’Alene: A Resort on the Lake, when it reopened in May. Together, they conceived of signature dishes like the Dockside’s oversized desserts known as Gooey’s, and the orange rolls at Beverly’s, which would also offer a then-unprecedented four rotating menus.

Until he retired in 2021, Jessick’s office was right outside Beverly’s, where he sometimes slept on the floor if he needed to. The tiny space housed a massive collection of cookbooks, a round dining room table for his desk and mementos from his decades-long career, like the 2017 photo of Jessick in front of his staff when he was voted “North Idaho’s Best Chef” in the Inlander’s annual Best Of reader poll.

There was also framed acknowledgement of Jessick’s participation in the 1999 “Taste of Idaho” event at the prestigious James Beard Foundation where he helped prepare Idaho potatoes, roasted and stacked like a tower with stuffed morels, Teton Glacier vodka crème fraîche and chive oil.

Another plaque indicated his contributions to the American Culinary Federation, which awarded him two National President’s Medallions. Jessick was also a founding member of the federation’s Chefs de Cuisine Chapter of the Inland Northwest, which named him “Chef of the Year” in 2001.

He had piles of photos from his international travels to Japan, China, Mexico and Taiwan on behalf of the Idaho Potato Commission, plus other events for which he was asked to cook. Once he prepared seven courses on an electric stove aboard the Resort’s Mish-An-Nock cruise boat for guests from Japan, which prompted a return invitation for Jessick to travel to Japan to sample some local cuisine.

“I have been very fortunate to have eaten at some of the finest places in the world,” Jessick said.

Chef Rod Jessick led Hagadone Hospitality’s culinary team for 37 years. COEUR D’ALENE RESORT PHOTO

Jessick’s seventh floor office had a window that looked into its kitchen. Nodding toward the people working there, he said, “I call them the heart of the place.”

It wasn’t just lip service, according to many longtime and former employees; Jessick created a special work environment, especially at the resort.

“He knew everyone’s name,” says Bill Hill, the resort’s execu tive banquet chef, adding that Jessick had an open-door policy when it came to staff.

“And so he was like our kitchen psychologist, psychiatrist, you know, that anybody could go up there and talk to him at any time,” Hill says. “He would stop everything he was doing to help people, whether it’s work related for their career development, or personal stuff. He just had a personal touch with everyone.”

Hill was just 20 when he first started at the resort in 1987. Within six months, Jessick took him under his wing.

“When we opened a couple restaurants, I would go there with him to do that, and then he just kind of moved me through the ranks,” Hill says. “He taught me everything I know about food.”

Formerly the resort’s director of catering, Wendi Haught appreciated many things about working with Jessick, from how he mentored others to his insight into the whole culinary and hospitality process.

“He had an incredible attention to detail, not just what was going in the dish, but how it looked when it was being placed on the plate, and what’s the attitude and the presentation style of the service team while it’s being placed out,” Haught says. “His expectation of precision and value for the guests’ experience didn’t change because of the plate price, where dinner was located or who the dinner was for. His style just transcended that.”

Haught, who’s since gone on to run the annual From the Ashes event in North Idaho and was recently named senior event manager for Certified Angus Beef, also admired Jessick’s creativity and insight.

“His goal was always to take it to the next level, which sounds trite, after all these years of people saying that — but he just did,” Haught says.

“Everything he would do, it’d be like, over the top,” adds Hill, who’d respond to Jessick with, “‘I think we’re making this too difficult,’ and he’s like, ‘No, we’re making it better.’ Like, we’re making it different than everybody else.”

Beverly’s executive chef Jim Barrett recalls Jessick saying: “I want something, I don’t know what I want, but it’s just gotta have this wow factor.”

And he would push his employees to do their best, says Barrett, whom Jessick hired 29 years ago as executive pastry chef.

“He was hard on us in a good way,” says Barrett, who also remembers how Jessick would get 20 or so food magazines a month.

“And one of his favorite things is he would go through them and circle things and rip out pages and he would put them in our mailboxes. Just stacks of stuff that he would want us to see, want us to try, want us to put on the menu,” Barrett says.

But even though Jessick had high expectations, people trusted and respected him, including Curtis Smith, who worked at Beverly’s from 1988 to 1990, relocated to New York to attend the Culinary Institute of America, and returned to the region to open the resort’s Tito’s Italian Grill and Wine Shop in 1993.

“What I’ve always said, without question, is Rod was the greatest mentor in my career,” says Smith, who joined Spokane Community College’s Inland Northwest Culinary Academy in 2006, where he now mentors a new generation of aspiring chefs.

Being a chef is a very demanding job and if you have to worry about your boss, that adds to the stress, Smith says, adding that “although I worked for Hagadone Hospitality, I worked for Rod Jessick.”

“I trusted him,” Smith says. “He set the example in so many ways but rarely taking credit for anything.”

The Coeur d’Alene Resort is planning a celebration of life for Jessick on Saturday, March 25, at 1 pm. In the meantime, Jessick’s nephew, Brad Fuller, has created a GoFundMe page to raise money for aspiring chefs to continue their education at culinary schools in Coeur d’Alene and Spokane. n

In Support of: FINDYOURNEWFAVOR EXPLORE 100+ RESTAURANTS Three Course Menus $25 • $35 • $45 FEB 23 THROUGH MAR 4 Presented by RESTAURANT WEEK

Eye of the Storm

Movies about the internet have, to put it lightly, always been a mixed bag. Just as there can be incisive works like last year’s We’re All Going to the World’s Fair, that shined in its specificity and acute awareness of the social worlds built in the digital space, there are misfires like 2014’s Men, Women & Children which are doomed to be forgotten due to how broadly they approach the material.

That made the 2018 film Searching a surprising improvement. Using the narrative tenets of a thriller, it starred John Cho as a father whose daughter disappears and leaves him desperately searching for clues about where she could have gone in the online identity she kept secret from him. The hook was that this all took place via screens, meaning that all we were able to see was tied to technology. It served as a mirror that brought into focus small details we wouldn’t otherwise notice when observing someone in-person.

That film’s editors, Nicholas D. Johnson and Will Merrick, have now stepped in as co-directors/writers with Missing. It initially follows much of the same narrative beats, though in a manner that has flipped the script somewhat. Rather than seeing the online world through the eyes of a parent, it is the child — Storm Reid’s June — who guides the story. This is quite literal, as every single click

of a phone keyboard or hesitation when typing a message comes from her.

It all begins in exchanges with her mother, Grace (Nia Long), who is going on a trip to Colombia with her new boyfriend, Kevin (Ken Leung), and leaving June home alone. Each cares for the other, though they struggle to speak about a past loss (similar to Searching). After Grace departs for the airport, June throws a jubilant party at the house that we get glimpses of through social media posts that reveal that she still carries this weight on her shoulders. This is brought into further focus when her mother never comes home and stops answering any of her messages.

Missing then becomes a film that serves as an updating of Searching, using new gadgets and applications that have become more present since its predecessor, while still utilizing the same framing device. It never falls into the trap of being a gimmick and, for the most part, feels organic. The knowledge that June has of the internet means everything moves faster, and the film trusts us to go along with the solutions she creates to get the next clue. Reid, who has been solid in recent supporting performances (Euphoria), makes the most of this leading role even when acting largely within the confines of FaceTime calls. She also

finds an ally in the Columbian gig worker Javi (Joaquim de Almeida), who serves as her eyes and ears on the ground. While initially just a transaction, the two become a team.

The film also does a far better job than Searching of not telegraphing its revelations too much, which makes the payoffs more earned. It even takes a couple humorous shots at the often toxic world of true crime with a recurring joke about a fake streaming series and TikTok talking heads making appearances. Though not robust commentary by any means, this awareness of how people package and consume tragedy online still gives it a bit of a relevant edge. There is some tension in how the conclusion comes awfully close to feeling more like the parody series the film was poking fun at prior, but it is still restrained enough to work. It’s more dynamic than Searching, which kind of petered out with forced exposition tying everything up. When paired with Reid giving a multifaceted performance that provides an emotional grounding point, we’re able to go along with wherever the story takes us. While it might not be remembered as one of the best films about the internet, it also avoids the trappings that have doomed many before it. n

Directed by Nicholas D. Johnson and Will Merrick Starring Storm Reid, Nia Long, Joaquim de Almeida
Missing — the sequel of sorts to 2018’s Searching — takes a different perspective while defying expectations once more
June (Storm Reid, left) must piece together internet clues to find her mom in Missing.

Liked Father, Disliked Son

and Nicholas expresses himself in broad, generic terms that sound like something out of a psychology textbook. The characters regard depression as some strange, alien phenomenon, not a wellknown condition that elite New York City professionals would undoubtedly be familiar with.

In his 2020 directorial debut The Father, French playwright and novelist Florian Zeller created an elegant, cinematic adaptation of his stage play about a man suffering from dementia and the strain it puts on his family. Zeller used inventive shifting set design to immerse the audience in the lead character’s perspective, delivering a sensitive and often devastating portrayal of living with mental illness, for both patients and caregivers.

Starting with its title, The Son is clearly set up to be a thematic sequel to The Father, as another intense, intimate drama about the toll that mental illness takes on a family. Zeller once again collaborates with screenwriter Christopher Hampton to adapt his own play, and Oscar-winning The Father star Anthony Hopkins even puts in a one-scene appearance. But in nearly every way, The Son fails where The Father succeeded, and whatever insights and innovations that Zeller brought to The Father are entirely missing from this follow-up.

The subject this time is adolescent depression, which appears to come on rather suddenly for 17-year-old Nicholas Miller (Zen McGrath). Nicholas has been living with his mother, Kate (Laura Dern), who reaches out to her ex-husband, Nicholas’ father Peter (Hugh Jackman), for help when she can no longer deal with him. Nicholas, who’s been skipping school and engaging in self-harm, says that he’d feel better if he could live with his father. He moves in with Peter and Peter’s second wife, Beth (Vanessa Kirby), who’s just given birth to a baby boy.

Peter, a high-powered lawyer of some kind who’s in line to work on a major political campaign, doesn’t understand Nicholas’ feelings of despair and emptiness. The movie’s treatment of depression is similarly superficial and simplistic,

The dialogue is stiff and stagey, proving a challenge for even the experienced cast members, and McGrath seems totally defeated by it. Rather than holding the movie together, his performance drags every scene down with its unconvincing simulation of depression and suicidal ideation.

Nicholas blames all of his problems on his parents’ divorce, and he comes across as a manipulative jerk rather than a troubled teen crying out for help. Hopkins’ title character in The Father could also be inconsiderate and obnoxious, but that movie balanced frustration with sympathy, and the balance is completely off here.



Directed by Florian Zeller Starring Hugh Jackman, Zen McGrath, Laura Dern

Jackman and Dern fare only slightly better, stuck with characters whose obliviousness borders on stupidity. The movie’s title applies as much to Peter as it does to Nicholas, and the story is more about how Nicholas’ family members handle his depression than about Nicholas’ own experience of it. Peter has problems of his own, including an antagonistic relationship with his cruel, judgmental father (Hopkins), and Jackman plays him as haunted and weary. Those subtler emotions tend to get buried in the clumsy, overwrought scenes, in which characters loudly declare the obvious to each other.

Unlike the visually impressive The Father, The Son never quite transcends its stage origins, with scenes set in unremarkable apartments and offices, and major events occurring offscreen. The movie is slathered in Hans Zimmer’s oppressive score, and Zeller never misses an opportunity to underline and repeat his already belabored points. The result is a parade of monotonous misery, culminating in a drawn-out, heavily telegraphed climax followed by a cheap, contrived epilogue. Rather than cultivating empathy, it just inspires scorn. n

Filmmaker Florian Zeller follows the brilliant The Father with overwrought misfire The Son


Carmen Jane is moving to Los Angeles for pop career advancement… not because she wants to leave Spokane

There’s no one else like Carmen Jane in the Spokane music scene.

And by the end of the month, there will simply be no one.

While local music lovers might know singersongwriter Cami Bradley from her finalist run on America’s Got Talent in 2013 or the indie folk music she made as one half of The Sweeplings, her pop alter-ego is an entirely different beast. It’s pop music that’s closest to something like Billie Eilish: dark, melodic, moody, musically complex. It’s the sort of sound that very much sticks out from the rest of what’s going on around town.

But in a matter of days, Carmen Jane is packing up and moving to Los Angeles. It’s time for Bradley to leave Spokane… even if she doesn’t really want to.

Carmen Jane first emerged in 2019. After seven years with The Sweeplings, Bradley was wanting to branch out musically and see what she could do in a non-collaborative situation.

“I think there was always an itch to do something different in a space that stretched me more,” Bradley says. “I’m really thankful for the time that I was just, like, writing and exploring on my own, because I didn’t know that I had the voice for that or if I could push myself that far. Carmen Jane was the first time where these were my stories with no one else’s intertwined. I needed to have that freedom to explore myself, as an artist.”

Not that Carmen Jane would stay a purely solo endeavor for long. Local music manager/ scenemaker Ryker heard what Bradley was doing and suggested she link up with Benn Suede, a former lead guitarist for the nationally touring metalcore band Crown the Empire, who was running the Blare Sound-Suite recording studio in Spokane Valley. But Bradley, who was working with a German-based producer at the time, didn’t take the bait initially, holding off two years before meeting up with Suede.

“I wasn’t sure that I wanted to introduce a new person,” Bradley says. “I was like, I don’t know… if he’s in Spokane doing pop stuff and I haven’t heard of him, I don’t know if that’s the move… I was very wrong.”

Eventually in April 2021, the pair finally con-

Suede and Bradley are going Hollywood with Carmen Jane. LAURKEN KENDALL PHOTO

nected. And while their first attempt at collaboration didn’t quite click, they kept at it. Eventually using Israeli electro-pop rapper Noga Erez as a reference point for their second session (her music uses classical instruments in a very modern way) helped the duo unlock the Carmen Jane formula.

“Not a lot of music is that musical anymore,” says Suede. “It’s not, like, derived from classical music. And both of us have, to some degree, a classical or jazz background. And so hearing somebody do it — flip something so vintage into a modern space — was really inspiring for both of us.”

They both loved the song that came about from that creation session (“Mindtricks”) and started working on a regular basis. Eventually, Carmen Jane became more of a collaboration, with Suede as the co-frontman and executive producer, than a pure solo project. The dark pop soundscapes they create pair intriguingly with Bradley’s skills as an emotive, experience-driven storytelling songwriter.

“To me, it sounds like the classic and the modern are fighting. They’re having a battle,” says Suede of Carmen Jane’s sound, which blends elements of each musician’s background. “It’s very violent, and some songs are really aggressive. In some it’s musically aggressive, and some of it’s emotionally aggressive. It really has a broad range of how it sonically comes across.”

“From the creative perspective, I don’t know if music has ever been this easy and natural,” Bradley adds.

Validation for Carmen Jane came last summer when the duo went on a mini-tour, opening for popular electronic music violinist Lindsey Stirling. Still operating on a DIY level (traveling by car with Bradley’s mom and sister selling merch), the duo wasn’t sure how crowds of 2,000 to 5,000 would respond to their sound. They were blown away by the response.

“I think we were underprepared for the amount of love for us,” says Bradley. “We don’t really match Lindsey Stirling’s music, per se. And so we were like, [people] might show up and be like, ‘What is happening?’ But it was totally opposite. We came offstage after the first show, and I had like 10 missed calls for my mom saying, ‘You get down here to the merch table!’ So we walked down, and there were hundreds of people in line. We sold out of our merch for the entire run of the tour in like 10 minutes.”

The response had the duo scrambling to create new merch in each city — frantically calling up Tshirt printers and even getting some embroidered at a Walmart at one point. But the continued love night after night from newcomers of all ages continued to show they were on the right track.

And now, Carmen Jane is ready to take the next step. After releasing a few songs over the past couple years, Carmen Jane’s 13-song debut LP will arrive later this year (late summer/early fall). The rollout for the record begins Feb. 15 with the release of the first single, the group’s aforementioned first creative breakthrough, “Mindtricks.”

But in order to move ahead, it’s unfortunately time for Carmen Jane to move away.


don’t want to live in LA,” Bradley says with a laugh.

She genuinely adores living in

Spokane, but Carmen Jane’s move is about opportunities.

First and foremost, Carmen Jane’s distribution and optimization team resides in Los Angeles. As a result, the duo traveled to SoCal almost monthly last year for work, but still weren’t always physically available when opportunities popped up to make a networking connection, play a show or hop in for a studio session. There are simply more chances to work regularly down in the entertainment hub, including becoming support for more tours — a major goal for Carmen Jane this year. And while Spokane certainly has rock, folk and hip-hop scenes, there’s not a lot of genre representation in the pop realm here.

“It’s tough, because Spokane is awesome and our music scene is growing,” Bradley says. “It does make me sad, because there’s a little part of me that’s like, I want to be a part of the growth of that. But there isn’t a lot of expansion in this genre for us here.”

Spokane just isn’t a fit for what Carmen Jane is striving to do at the moment. Both members also point out that a gap in the area’s all-ages venues really hurts an act of their ilk. There are basically two all-ages options for more established acts in Spokane: The Big Dipper (110 capacity) and the Knitting Factory (1,500 capacity). There’s essentially no midsize option, which is problematic for a pop act like Carmen Jane.

“You need the all-ages,” says Bradley. “We don’t have it.”

“The younger kids get way more invested in music,” stresses Suede. “People over 25 don’t really invest in art, generally. There’s definitely some, but it’s mostly younger people who will grab on. That’s how you gain fans. And that’s a massive bummer here. Because there’s no way to play a show in front of 300 to 500 people, all-ages.”

To bid Spokane adieu, Carmen Jane is performing a farewell concert at the Washington Cracker Co. building on Saturday, Jan. 21. The pair chose the atypical spot because of the ability to run an all-ages show the way they want (at roughly 500 capacity), and because they have the resources to make the space work — Cami’s husband runs sound, they know lighting people, etc. — that other locals may lack.

Carmen Jane might not want to move to LA. But it’s time to swan dive into the unknown. The danger in the uncharted waters is kind of the point.

“Honestly, it’s a risk,” Bradley says. “And that’s part of why we’re doing it. We’ve done everything here safely. And we use all the resources that we can think of, and we’ve worked really hard. And it’s not that Spokane can’t house those things. But Spokane is not risky.”

“Our friends and family and community and city are behind us, and in LA, everything is against you [laughs]. So it’s a little bit like, back up against the wall, what are you going to do to succeed?” she continues. “And we want some of that pressure on us: to have the financial fear, and the connection fear, and the performance fear and all of those things kind of stacked up against us. So we can actually put our feet to the fire and go.” n

Carmen Jane: Farewell Concert • Sat, Jan. 21 at 7:30 pm • $15 • All ages • Washington Cracker Co. • 304 W. Pacific Ave. •

Coeur d’Alene Casino.


Join us
Reserve Your Tickets
JINGLE CONTEST NW musicians, songwriters and those with a creative musical bent of any music style are invited to create a new jingle for the
Jingle submissions must include and end with the familiar lyrics “Winning is just the beginning at the Coeur d’Alene Casino!” To enter, submit your 30 to 120 seconds MPG3 or MPG4 file by MARCH 16TH, 2023 at Winner(s) will be announced at the Coeur d’Alene Casino on MARCH 31ST, 2023 AT 5 PM See for compete entry instructions and contest rules. WINNING IS JUST THE BEGINNING! $5,000 in Cash Prizes!
Saturday, January 21, 2023
Weddings on Lake Coeur d’Alene are a unique, fun and beautiful way to say your vows and make memories. Join us on Saturday, January 21st from 12-4PM for our “Wedding Open House” and enjoy delicious hors d’oeuvres, a hosted bar, and VIP tours of three of our award-winning boats with gorgeous wedding set-ups.


Thursday, 1/19

J BOTTLE BAY BREWING CO., Lucas Brookbank Brown



J J KNITTING FACTORY, Niko Moon, Dylan Schneider THE MASON JAR, Keva


J QQ SUSHI & KITCHEN, Just Plain Darin ZOLA, Desperate8s

Friday, 1/20


J BABY BAR, Nothing New, Braden, Counting the Fallen, Fine Line

J THE BIG DIPPER, No Soap, Radio, Zoramena

BIGFOOT PUB, Heather King Band



CHAN’S RED DRAGON ON THIRD, Steve Livingston and Triple Shot



THE DRAFT ZONE, Jonathan Arthur, The Red Books






Saturday, 1/21

49 DEGREES NORTH, Quarter Monkey

BIGFOOT PUB, Heather King Band BOLO’S BAR & GRILL, The Shift




J LUCKY YOU LOUNGE, Helmer Noel (EP Release), Rosie Cerquone, Azariah LUCKY YOU LOUNGE, The Imagine Collective NIGHTHAWK LOUNGE (CDA CASINO), Bruiser




Sunday, 1/22


After moving to Spokane from Austin in September 2021, Helmer Noel is ready to make some waves in the local music scene. With the aid of songwriter/producer Logan McDonald, the singer has crafted his debut EP, City of Arrows. The record is a collection of soulful slow-burns, tunes held loosely together by delicately strummed chords and sparse instrumentation, allowing the deep resonance of Helmer’s voice do the heavy lifting. To properly mark the occasion, Helmer Noel heads to Lucky You to debut City of Arrows with support from local marimba pop standout Rosie Cerquone and R&B/pop singer-songwriter Azariah.

Helmer Noel (EP Release), Rosie Cerquone, Azariah • Sat, Jan. 21 at 8 pm • $12-$15 • 21+ • Lucky You Lounge • 1801 W. Sunset Blvd. •

Country music has been the realm of some of the most heart-wrenching songs of all time. Niko Moon sits on the polar opposite end of the spectrum. The pop country singer-songwriter’s music practically screams POSITIVE VIBES ONLY. Moon has written tunes for the likes of Zac Brown Band, Rascal Flatts, Dierks Bentley and Morgan Wallen, and his own bouncy tunes like “Good Time” and “No Sad Songs” frolic in the fun moments of partying, drinking and general revelry. Considering the general doldrum that is the concert calendar in the first couple months of the year, catching Moon live might be a much-needed energetic pick-me-up.

Niko Moon, Dylan Schneider • Thu, Jan. 19 at 8 pm • $15-$18 • All ages • Knitting Factory • 919 W. Sprague Ave. •





ZOLA, Runaway Lemonade

Coming Up ...

J LUCKY YOU LOUNGE, The Holy Broke, Jeremy James Meyer, Matt Mitchell Music Co., Jan. 28, 8 pm.

J LUCKY YOU LOUNGE, Damien Jurado, Shoecraft, Feb. 12, 8 pm.

J J SPOKANE ARENA, Ice Cube, Bone Thugs N Harmony, Xzibit, Tha Dogg Pound, March 5, 7 pm.

J J KNITTING FACTORY, Alvvays, March 13, 8 pm.

Vista HOGFISH, Open
Monday Night Blues Jam with John
Open Mic Night
Mic Monday, 1/23 J
Boot Juice LITZ’S
Shuffle Dawgs
Tuesday, 1/24 JOHN’S ALLEY,
Wednesday, 1/25 THE DRAFT ZONE, The Draft Zone Open Mic EICHARDT’S PUB, John Firshi
JANUARY 19, 2023 INLANDER 45 Don’t miss out! SPOKANEFILMFESTIVAL.ORG 6:00pm Best of the Northwest SATURDAY | February 4 The Magic Lantern Sam Now Posterize Exhibit + F IL MM AK E R Q&A Th e Bing FRIDAY | February 3 8:30pm STCU Members get 50% off passes and tickets SUNDAY | February 5 The Magic Lantern 11:00am
Opening Night! Sam Now: "What do two film-obsessed brothers do to solve a family mystery? Using every video format imaginable!" $99 All-Access Pass $69 In-Person Pass $49 Virtual Pass Passes on sale NOW: Pictured: Phi 1. 618 (Bulgaria/Canada), It’s Spring... (Armenia), Just Let Me Go! (Portugal), Mountainside, (USA) Check updated listing in our web site: Animation Showcase Just Let Me Go! (Já Nada Sei!) US and Canada Shorts It's Spring.... Phi
Superadapted, A Dreamer's Search
Shorts Circus of the Scars Mountainside See what the World is Watching
1:30pm 4:00pm 6:30pm 11:00am 1:30pm 4:00pm 6:30pm 9:00pm
1. 618
Better World: Kumari,


Are the tense games of the Zags’, Cougs’, and Eagles’ college basketball seasons a bit too much at times? Unwind with some no-stakes, stress-free hoops courtesy of the Harlem Globetrotters. The most entertaining basketball team on the planet for over 95 years, the Globetrotters’ family-friendly sports entertainment product still draws crowds thanks to their mix of eye-popping basketball skills (crazy dribbling! passing wizardry! sweet shooting! monster dunks!) and planned comedic hijinx. Spoiler alert: The Globetrotters are going to beat the hapless Washington Generals (their head-to-head record is legit something like 16,500-3). But if you come to the Globetrotters game and look at the scoreboard, you’re already missing the point.

The Harlem Globetrotters 2023 World Tour • Mon, Jan. 23 at 7 pm • $26-$112 • All ages • Spokane Arena • 720 W. Mallon Ave. •


When most of us picture an artwork, we probably visualize a painting or drawing on a wall, or maybe a monumental sculpture we pass by on our way to work. Recent Washington State University graduate Siri Stensberg makes that kind of art — abstract watercolor paintings, beautifully rendered drawings of the human figure, colorful teapots and other ceramic sculptures — but the work she’s showing at Spokane Falls Community College defies the usual description. Her artworks combine lighting, projection, and even sound with things on the wall, floor, or hanging from the ceiling to create an immersive experience that you can really get into, like literally.

Siri Stensberg: Scattered Storms • Through Feb. 10; open MonThu from 9 am-4 pm, Fri 9 am-1:30 pm • Free • SFCC Fine Arts Gallery, Bldg. 6 • 3410 W. Whistalks Way • gallery • 509-533-3746


Drums are essential to music. Drums keep the beat, bring life to songs, and have been around since Neolithic times. (That’s right, even cavepeople were getting their groove on.) At this event, kids in third through eighth grade can learn how to drum on a West African drum called a djembe, with the help of local musicians Matt Slater and Himes Alexander of the local rock duo The Smokes. The word “djembe” comes from the Bambara language saying “Anke djé anke bé,” meaning “everyone gather together in peace.” The phrase describes the meaning of this event and the purpose of drums throughout history well. Kids can learn how to use their hands to make different sounds on the djembe, and then work as a group to put the sounds together, forming a song of epic rhythmic proportions.

Drumming with Djembe • Sat, Jan. 21 at 9 am • Free • Spark Central • 1214 W. Summit Pkwy. • • 509-279-0299


Submit events online at or email relevant details to We need the details one week prior to our publication date.


Spokane is ripe with poetry slams and open mics, but Pivot Spokane shifts the focus toward storytelling. Four times a year, Pivot gathers six members of the community to stand on stage and present stories from their daily lives that follow a specific theme. The six storytellers at January’s event are telling the tales of treasures they’ve uncovered along life’s path. Every epic adventure or journey begins with the ambition to find what you’re looking for. By the end, you’ve left with much more than what you sought out. You’ve come away from the experience with new friends, relationships, discoveries — the list goes on. Walk away from this event feeling connected, proud of your community, and maybe even inspired to tell your own stories in the future.

Pivot Spokane: Treasure • Thu, Jan. 26 at 7 pm • $10 suggested donation • Washington Cracker Co. Building • 304 W. Pacific Ave. •


Classic British thrills from the Master of Suspense himself, Alfred Hitchcock, are the flavor of Spokane Civic Theatre’s next main stage production, but this staged version turns the comedy dial all the way up, with a twist. While the original 1935 film takes audiences on a wild chase as one man attempts to evade assassination by a shady spy network (the titular “39 Steps”), encountering a long list of good and bad actors in the process, this version boasts a lean cast of just four. The rapid-pace role changes — with actors occasionally playing multiple characters in the same scene — are complemented by oodles of Hitchcockian references. The Civic’s production of The 39 Steps is directed by Heather McHenry-Kroetch, and stars the compact cast of Dallan Starks, Dana Sammond, Dan Bisbee and Jaron Fuglie.

CHEY SCOTT The 39 Steps • Jan. 20-Feb. 12, Thu-Sat at 7:30 pm, Sun at 2 pm • $10-$35 • Spokane Civic Theatre • 1020 N. Howard St. • •

509-325-2507 GET LISTED!
VOTE NOW! VOTE: POLLS ARE OPEN Jan 18 - Feb14! BALLOT ON PAGE 20 The Inland Northwest READERS POLL BEST OF 30 TH ANNUAL 2023 Results Issue ON STANDS March 23


SUNDAY AFTERNOON AT PERRY STREET BREWING You, an attractive brunette, well attired, walk in and take a seat at the bar. You told the quick-handed beertendress there’d be two of you; halfway through your first beer you told her he was late, and while I wasn’t trying to eavesdrop I overheard enough to discern that there was a question as to whether he was coming at all. Did he ever show? If so, I hope you hit it off. If not, your next one’s on me, no strings, next time I’m at PSB I’ll pay for an extra beer and you can collect at your leisure. ;) No one deserves to be stood up.

DEAR BROKEN HEARTED I’ve been wondering why you called me, for two years, but now. I just wanted to let you know that I’m not ghosting ya. Just “circumstances.” Ho hum. I’ve been waiting. Can’t wait for that second kiss!!??!! The Wanderer

WANDERING THROUGH THE FLY SHOP To the gorgeous girl with the wavy ‘70s hair that came into the fly shop looking oh so stunning. You were there buying flies and leader for yourself. I immediately fell in love with you. Hope to see you again soon, maybe on the water.


cellphones. Insurance statistics prove this, sadly. Being over 60, I move slower than I used to do. However, I’m worried for every pedestrian out there. I have a grade school a few short blocks from my place and see driving all around it that chills me to the bone. Drivers, Please Slow Down! There’s never an excuse to forget that we all own the roads, and they should always be safe for pedestrians and drivers alike.

OH NO THE BIG 4-0!! BRITTANY Morgan H.R......Happy Birthday!! Sooo glad you made it this long — it’s been a long road at times, and it’s not over yet girl! There’s the future daughter/son-in-laws and grandkids (maybe), taking care of the old folks...again, mom and daughter trips to wherever. Hope you have a speedy recovery, and I’m there for you anytime you need me. I Love you, my only daughter!! Yer Momma

ROADSIDE ASSISTANCE Cheers to the officer who happened to be driving behind me when a pothole jostled my battery loose and my car stopped abruptly in the middle of the road, leaving me without even emergency indicator lights! Your calm demeanor and quick problem-solving got me back on the road and safely home that dark and rainy evening. I suppose you had no choice but to stop. I was in the middle of the lane! But thank you so much for your help.

RE: SPOKANE HAS A BAD REPUTATION... ...Because it’s earned.

THANK YOU TO DELIGHTFUL YOUNG COUPLE While we were waiting to be seated at the Onion on Riverside Ave., we met a young couple who paid for our dinner after learning it was my husband’s birthday. Thank you for your kindness — it meant so much to us. There are wonderful young people out there.

CITY OF SPOKANE UTILITIES A great big cheers to the City of Spokane Utilities Dept. and all the other entities at City Hall that used funds from the American Rescue Plan to pay down or completely pay off our citizens utility bills. I know our household really needed it. Government does work! Thanks

SPOKANE CHINESE LUNAR NEW YEAR CELEBRATION Thank you to the Spokane Chinese Association for the fantastic Chinese Lunar New Year Celebration held at the FoxMartin Woldson Theater this past Sunday. The evening show featured traditional Chinese folk dances, Chinese Choir, tai chi,

Peking Opera, Lion Dance, Chinese music and instruments, and more. Before the show there was a free cultural event with all sorts of activities and food sampling... I hope this becomes an annual event.


DIRTY SNOWFLAKES When the city starts ticketing folks for not maintaining their sidewalks and fire hydrants, maybe I’ll consider not tossing the nasty blackstained snow with God knows what chemicals, salts, oil and rubber that studded tires and snow plow blades churn up. Our tax dollars are being wasted on stupid murals and crosswalk art, maybe we should purge our city council members and spend on actual infrastructure such as potholes and the many, many unpaved little roads and alleys all around our city. Also maybe start plowing earlier so when the plow does come through the people aren’t overwhelmed and can manage it instead of coming out to a 3-foot berm of concretehard dirty glacier from hell.

JEERS TO “STYLIST” WHO CUT MY MOTHER’S HAIR Everyone’s had a bad haircut. I’m not talking about a “regretclipping while drunk” episode. No, this strikes me as Passive-Aggressive, a nasty sort of “here’s what I think of you-ism” akin to spitting in a patron’s drink or keying a stranger’s car. I’m telling you, this level of bad haircut takes some doing. Did you think it was funny? Did you think my mother deserved to be treated like that? ... My mother mentioned later that it was “shorter than she wanted” but insisted “it will grow out.” She couldn’t look me in the face when she said it.

LOCAL TERRORIST I am encouraging residents in the NorthTown area to please call in reports.The years of terrorism have only escalated, now they include Christmas Eve. No bottle rockets or firecrackers, just their favorite mini-bombs that are lit multiple times day and night for over a week around July 4th, New Year’s Eve, and

now Christmas Eve and other random days.

If you live close enough to know who this is and where they live, even if you don’t know, please make a report! Traumatized veterans, war survivors, children, animals,

six, sometimes up to 10. But what stands out are the two giant cranes majestically standing over and guarding the bridge. I wonder if there were Egyptians walking their dogs wondering when in Hades the

and wildlife have no other recourse. This is beyond noise pollution. An M-80 is 1/8th stick of dynamite and is federally illegal... If citizens would make reports about this domestic terrorist, it might at least result in confiscation and federal fines ... Your neighbors and my last surviving chicken who did not die yet from this continuing assault this past year would also be grateful.

SPOKANE ZIPLINE NO! Stop using our tax dollars for frivolous, unnecessary, wasteful projects! Fix our streets! Get us off the bottom of the list in the U.S. in housing! Have police write tickets to speeders, red light runners, road rage participants! ... Don’t we have a gondola over the river? Our city is more than Riverfront Park, way more! Realize it and act accordingly! No more statues, ridiculous art, colored sidewalks etc.! This is not Portland or Seattle, this is SPOKANE!

SICK OF THE CONSPIRACIES When did so many folks decide to believe in all the dumb-assed conspiracy theories? When did hate become so much more important than truth? ... Too many people hate anything that doesn’t go with their beliefs, and some of us are sick of it. Please keep your hate to yourselves, and let the rest of us move on to the future instead of looking to the past.

PRIUS You verbally abused me and my daughters. You have my car/I have the title. That car will only be moved when I deem you are sorry for that. Until then, you are a staunchly conservative country guy with a 2007 Prius. P.S. You are blocked on my phone. This is your challenge.


It’s not a major street but useful. I walk my dog by there almost every day. I’ve gotten to the point of counting the number of men working just for laughs. Sometimes

great Giza pyramid was ever going to be finished. Of course, it was bigger, but it had many more people working on it! The Egyptians didn’t have two cranes costing how many thousands of dollars a day just sitting there. ... Even the north-south freeway is moving faster given its size, and it’s about to be put on hold.

BROWN BROWNE’S Why, oh why sweet heavens above, do so many of the town folk let their dogs shit all over the sidewalks?!

Every day when I take my jolly jaunt round the neighborhood and into town, I have to stay light on my feet, keep a slight bend in the knees, core engaged, arms extended and eyes peeled like potatoes just so I can be prepared to dodge ALL THAT POOP. It’s not quite delightful to let your pooch poo on a strip of grass or in your neighbor’s front yard, but it is exponentially less choice to leave it on the cement, where it just sits there like a stanky sidewalk toupee that no one asked for.

INLANDER NOT MLK FRIENDLY? Bummed with staff at Inlander. You didn’t have any coverage on upcoming MLK events! You’re responsible for the journal and normally do a good job covering important events, etc. Shoot, I usually urge people in the region to read your material. To make change MLK wanted, leaders and citizens, like the Inlander, need to do better. n

RE: DRIVERS VS. CROSSWALKS As a longtime walker in different Spokane neighborhoods for over 50 years, I agree with you: Drivers using cellphones are scarier/more dangerous than ones before
H A L F T O Y S K L U M P A B E L R H E A E A T A T H A W A I I I S L A N D E R S V R B O S N I P E D B Y J O V E G A P E D R U E R S M O S T A N I A A P T S L A V I S H A N Y V P S W I I I T I S V I A E I K A L T R I A H E D Y R E I G N A A S H E L L A A N V I L H O R S E Y O D A M A E K O L N G I V E S Y O U W I I I N G S L O I R E B R A S A I R E E R A S E I N I T S P O T THIS WEEK'S ANSWERS SOUND OFF 1. Visit by 3 pm Monday. 2. Pick a category (I Saw You, You Saw Me, Cheers or Jeers). 3. Provide basic info: your name and email (so we know you’re real). 4. To connect via I Saw You, provide a non-identifying email to be included with your submission — like “,” not “” “ No more statues, ridiculous art, colored sidewalks etc.! This is not Portland or Seattle... ” Want to see LEGENDARY CD RATES?
I Saw You/Cheers & Jeers is for adults 18 or older. The Inlander reserves the right to edit or reject any posting at any time at its sole discretion and assumes no responsibility for the content.



ALIVE This program supports community-centered, nonprofits in fundraising efforts. Jan. 25, 4-8 pm. $12. Numerica Skate Ribbon, 720 W. Spokane Falls Blvd. (509-625-6600)

2023 PAIRING WITH PARASPORT Meet ParaSport Spokane athletes, hear stories of the organization’s impact, locally and globally, and connect with fellow ParaSport supporters. Jan. 28, 5:30-9:30 pm. $75. El Katif Shrine Center, 7217 W. Westbow Blvd.


CHAD KROEGER & JT PARR Using their digital platforms, Chad and JT take action to raise awareness and bring change for some of the most important causes in pop culture and beyond. Jan. 19, 7:30 pm, Jan. 20, 7:30 & 10:15 pm and Jan. 21, 7 & 9:45 pm. $25-$35. Spokane Comedy Club, 315 W. Sprague. (509-318-9998)

SPACE QUEERS: A COMEDY SHOW An LGBTQIA+ variety comedy show with stand up, characters, and drag featuring all local talent. Jan. 19, 8 pm. Free. Lucky You Lounge, 1801 W. Sunset Blvd. (509-474-0511)

CHOOSE TO LOSE An all-improvised game show comprised of audience members. In order to win, you must lose. Fri at 7:30 pm through Jan. 27. $9. Blue Door Theatre, 815 W. Garland Ave. (509-747-7045)

JOSIAH CARLSON, MICHAEL GLATZMAIER Live, local comedians. Jan. 21, 8 pm. $15. The Draft Zone, 4436 W. Riverbend Ave.

SAFARI Blue Door’s version of “Whose Line,” a fast-paced improv show with a few twists and turns added. Rated for mature audiences/ages 16+. Reservations recommended. Jan. 21 and Jan. 28, 7:30-9 pm. $9. Blue Door Theatre, 815 W. Garland Ave.

NEW TALENT TUESDAYS Watch comedians of all skill levels work out jokes together. Tuesdays at 7 pm (doors at 6 pm). Free. Spokane Comedy Club, 315 W. Sprague.




ment of Eastern Washington’s wheat industry. Tue-Sun from 10 am-5 pm, third Thursdays from 10 am-9 pm through Jan. 22. $15-$20. The MAC, 2316 W. First Ave. (509-456-3931)

LILAC CITY LIVE! A show in the style of late-night programs featuring Erin Peterson of Trending Northwest, The Hive Artists-in-Residence Mallory Battista and Lisa Soranaka and musical guest Truehoods. Cash bar available. Jan. 19, 8-9 pm. Free. Central Library, 906 W. Main Ave. (509-444-5300)

ROLE-PLAYING GAME DROP IN Improve your RPG skills by watching and participating in games. Fridays from 4-8 pm and Saturdays from 1-5 pm. Free. RPG Community Center, 101 N. Stone Street. (509-608-7630)

BRIDAL FAIR This annual bridal fair features wedding vendors, tours of the Jacklin Arts & Cultural Center and food. Jan. 21, 10 am-3 pm. Free. The Jacklin Arts & Cultural Center, 405 N. William St. (208-457-8950)

DROP IN & RPG Stop by and explore the world of role playing games. Build a shared narrative using cooperative problem solving, exploration, imagination and rich social interaction. First and Third Saturdays, 1-3:45 pm. Free. Spark Central, 1214 W. Summit Pkwy.

MARTIN LUTHER KING HUMAN RIGHTS COMMUNITY BREAKFAST This annual event features a breakfast of muffins, scones and beverages, entertainment, the presentation of the Rosa Parks Human Rights Achievement Awards and a apresentation by Dr. Scott Finnie. Registration is first come, first served. Jan. 21, 9:30 am. Free. Moscow Middle School, 1410 E. D St.

SINULOG FESTIVAL A festival in celebration of the Filipino holiday, Sinulog. The event features a potluck, cultural performances and a DJ. Jan. 21, 6-10 pm. By donation. St. Pius X Catholic Church, 625 E. Haycraft Ave.

MONTHLY POTLUCK & ASIAN GATHERING A potluck hosted by the FilipinoAmerican Northwest Associated. Bring a dish to share and connect with community. Jan. 22, 2-5 pm. By donation. Filipino American Community Hall, 205 N University Ave., Suite 1.

OPEN STUDIO AT THE HIVE Stop by to check out the Artist-in-Residence studios, tour The Hive and ask other questions. Wednesdays from 4-7 pm through Feb. 22. Free. The Hive, 2904 E. Sprague Ave.

PRO-CRAFT-INATORS ACCOUNTABILITY CLUB Are you a crafter who has unfinished projects around your home? Join your fellow pro-craft-inators and finish a project (or several) that you’ve started. Registration required. Wednesdays from 7-8 pm through Jan. 25. Free.

CRITTER CREATIONS Build, sew, glue, and otherwise assemble your own recycled critter. Various materials are available, from cardboard tubes to egg cartons to fabric and thread. Jan. 27, 3:30-5:30 pm. Spark Central, 1214 W. Summit Pkwy.

ESL CAFE: A CUP OF CONVERSATION This group meets weekly to practice English language speaking and listening skills. Jan. 27, 10-10:30 am. Free. Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front Ave. (208-769-2315)

EAST ASIAN TEA AND WELLBEING Dr. Gloria Chien introduces the principles of the Japanese tea culture and demonstrates Taiwanese kung-fu tea, then leads a contemplation tea-drinking activity combined with resiliency skills to promote wellness. Jan. 28, 3-4 pm. Free. Shadle Library, 2111 W. Wellesley Ave. (509-444-5390)

EVERGREEN STATE OF CONSCIOUSNESS FIVE YEAR ANNIVERSARY This celebration features various vendors, vegetarian appetizers, mocktails, raffles and an all-local music lineup including Snacks at Midnight, Aspen Kye, Tyler Alai and more. Jan. 28, 5 pm-1:45 am. $25$35. Washington Cracker Co. Building, 304 W. Pacific.


THIRD THURSDAY MATINEE: THE OTHER SIDE OF THE MIRROR This music documentary uses live footage from the 1963-65 Newport Folk Festivals with Bob Dylan as the focus. Jan. 19, 1 pm. $7. Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture, 2316 W. First Ave.

culture and the environment. Jan. 20-21, 7 pm. SOLD OUT. Bing Crosby Theater, 901 W. Sprague.

TOTALLY TUBULAR TUESDAY A weekly screening of a throwback film. Check the website for each week’s film. Every Tuesday at 7 pm. $2.50. Garland Theater, 924 W. Garland Ave.

PERFECT BLUE A pop singer gives up her career to become an actress, but slowly goes insane when she starts being stalked by an obsessed fan and what seems to be a ghost of her past. Jan. 26, 7-9 pm. $7. The Kenworthy, 508 S. Main St. (208-882-4127)

SPOKANE JEWISH CULTURAL FILM FESTIVAL This 19th annual event takes place online and in person for 2023. The film lineup includes Spokane’s Voices of the Holocaust, Where Life Begins, Tiger Within and more. For full schedule and details see website. Jan. 28-Feb. 5. $7$54. Gonzaga University Jepson Center, 502 E. Boone Ave.


FIRESIDE DINNER & MUSIC SERIES Enjoy selections from Arbor Crest’s seasonal menu along with wine and beer from Square Wheel Brewing. Music lineup varies, see website for more. Thu-Sat from 6-8 pm. Arbor Crest Wine Cellars, 4705 N. Fruit Hill Rd.

NORTH IDAHO WINE SOCIETY: LATTA WINES Hear directly from Andrew Latta about his journey and purchase discounted wines. Jan. 20, 7-9:30 pm. $25-$30. Lake City Center, 1916 N. Lakewood Dr.

HISTORICAL TOUR & SUPPER CLUB Bring a flashlight or lantern for a guided historical tour full of tales of the early days at the Commellini Estate. Supper features a menu served at one large communal table. Jan. 21, 4:30-9:30 pm. $85. Commellini Estate, 14715 N. Dartford Dr.

WINE WEDNESDAY All seven dinners in the series feature food from culinary regions south of the equator. Each meal comes with three wines paired by owner Josh Wade. Wednesdyas from 6-8 pm through Feb. 22. $27.50. Fête - A Nectar Co, 120 N. Stevens St. (509-951-2090)

TAPHOUSE UNCHAINED: UP NORTH DISTILLERY DINNER Featuring four chef-curated courses, craft cocktail pairings and conversation from distillery representatives. Jan. 26, 5:30-7:30 pm. $55. Coeur d’Alene Taphouse Unchained, 210 E. Sherman Ave.

THE WORLD OF WINE, FOOD & ART This dining experience offers a glimpse into local artist Claire Akenbrand’s personal collection paired with a pre-fixe, winepaired menu inspired by her work. Jan. 27, 6 pm. $100. Beverly’s, 115 S. Second St. (208-765-4000)


DRUMMING WITH DJEMBE Join local musicians Matt Slater and Himes Alexander of The Smokes on djembe drums and create playful, performance beats. Jan. 21, 9 am. Free. Spark Central, 1214 W. Summit Pkwy.


5: SLATKIN Maestro Leonard Slatkin collaborates with the Symphony for performances of Double Play by Cindy McTee, Francesca da Rimini by Tchaikovsky and Brahm’s first symphony. Jan. 21, 7:30 pm and Jan. 22, 3 pm. The Fox Theater, 1001 W. Sprague Ave.

THE MUSIC FROM AROUND THE WORLD KPBX KIDS’ CONCERT Tune into KPBX 91.1 FM to hear music and learn about instruments from all over the globe. Jan. 21, 1 pm. Free.


The MAC’s collection of cloth flour sacks offers a window into the early develop-

OPEN HOUSE Looking ahead to the 2023-24 school year, families are invited to take a tour of the First Presbyterian school. Jan. 25, 10-11:30 am & 4-5 pm. Free. First Presbyterian Church of Spokane, 318 S. Cedar St. fpchristianschool. org (509-747-9192)

THE WHALE A reclusive English teacher attempts to reconnect with his estranged teenage daughter. Screenplay by Moscow native Samuel D. Hunter. Jan. 19-20 at 7 pmand Jan. 22, 4 pm. $7. The Kenworthy, 508 S. Main St.

BANFF MOUNTAIN FILM FESTIVAL This two-day festival features screenings of films about outdoor adventure, mountain

DRAG BRUNCH The cast of Runway performs while enjoying a full breakfast menu and mimosas. Hosted by Savannah SoReal. Sundays from 10 am-2 pm. Globe Bar & Kitchen, 204 N. Division. (509-443-4014)

KITCHEN COOKING CLASS: GNOCCHI Commellini Estate’s executive chef teaches how to create gnocchi. The class culminates in a meal, served family style, inside the historic estate’s main venue. Jan. 25 and Jan. 26, 6:30-9:30 pm. $85. Commellini Estate, 14715 N. Dartford Dr.

SATURDAY WITH THE SYMPHONY Join members of the Coeur d’Alene Symphony for some music-filled fun. This program is geared towards children but parents are encouraged to join in the festivities. Jan. 21, 11 am. Free. Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front Ave. (208-769-2315)

WASHINGTON IDAHO SYMPHONY YOUNG ARTIST COMPETITION This recital features the 2022-23 finalists for the Young Artist competition. Two winners are chosen at the end of the recital. Jan. 22, 3 pm. Free. Gladish Community Center, 115 NW State St., Pullman. (509-332-8081)

• Text or Call: 509-535-PUCK Saturday 1/21 vs. Victoria
Enjoy discounted concession items at select concourse locations all game long, including $2 hot dogs, Coca-Cola products and more. Game Time: 7 PM Presented By: MILITARY APPRECIATION AND FAMILY FEAST NIGHT!


INLAND NORTHWEST RV SHOW The only multi-dealer RV show in the Inland Northwest. Compare makes and models and talk to factory reps. Jan. 19-22; Thu from 12-8 pm, Fri-Sat from 10 am-8 pm and Sun from 10 am-4 pm. $12. Spokane County Fair & Expo Center, 404 N. Havana St.

SNOWSHOE MOUNT SPOKANE Learn the basics of snowshoeing during a guided hike. Fee includes: snowshoes, poles, trail fees, instruction, guides and transportation. Meet at Yoke’s in Mead. Jan. 21-March 18, dates/times vary. $39.

SPOKANE CHIEFS VS. VICTORIA ROYALS Promos include Military Appreciation and Family Feast Nights. Jan. 21, 7:05 pm. $12-$30. Spokane Arena, 720 W. Mallon Ave.

WEST VALLEY OUTDOOR LEARNING CENTER OPEN HOUSE This monthly open house features crafts, activities and a chance to meet some classroom critters. Jan. 21, 10 am-1 pm. By donation. West Valley Outdoor Learning Center, 8706 E. Upriver Drive.

HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS Watch the Globetrotters’ basketball skills as they go head-to-head against the Washington Generals. Jan. 23, 7 pm. $26-$112. Spokane Arena, 720 W. Mallon Ave. (509-279-7000)

SPOKANE BOAT SHOW See the newest makes and models of boats, find discounts and shop from vendors. Jan. 26-

29; Thu-Sat from 10 am-7 pm, Sun from 10 am-4 pm. $5-$10. Spokane County Fair & Expo Center, 404 N. Havana St. (509-477-1766)


AIN’T TOO PROUD: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF THE TEMPTATIONS A new Broadway musical that follows The Temptations’ extraordinary journey from the streets of Detroit to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Jan. 17-22; Tue-Fri at 7:30 pm, Sat at 2 and 7:30 pm, Sun at 1 and 6:30 pm. $47.50-$95.50. First Interstate Center for the Arts, 334 W. Spokane Falls Blvd.

PHOTOGRAPH 51 A portrait of Rosalind Franklin and her fervid drive to map the contours of the DNA molecule. Thu-Sat at 7:30 pm, Sun at 2pm through Feb. 5.

$10-$25. Spokane Civic Theatre, 1020 N. Howard St.

THE 39 STEPS A man with a boring life meets a woman who says she’s a spy. When he takes her home, she is murdered. Soon, a mysterious organization called “The 39 Steps” is hot on the man’s trail in a nationwide manhunt. Jan. 20Feb. 12, Thu-Sat at 7:30 pm, Sun at 2 pm.

$10-$39. Spokane Civic Theatre, 1020 N. Howard St.

THE PRO-VOICE PROJECT A stage production of personal stories from local residents about reproductive choice. The show is followed by a moderated panel discussion with regional healthcare providers and advocates. Jan. 28, 3 & 7 pm.

$10. Heartwood Center, 615 S. Oak St. , Sandpoint.




This exhibit explores the intersection of material, color, space and sound via an immersive installation. Mon-Thu from 9 am-4 pm, Fri from 9 am-1:30 pm through Feb. 10. Free. SFCC Fine Arts Gallery, 3410 W. Whistalks Way, Bldg. 6. spokanefalls. edu/gallery (509-533-3746)

HOSTILE TERRAIN 94 A participatory art exhibition by the Undocumented Migration Project, directed by UCLA anthropologist Jason De León. Tue-Fri 1-4 pm, Sat 10 am-4 pm through March 11. Free. Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art WSU, 1535 NE Wilson Rd.

INTERTWINED A group show exploring how complex narratives and experiences tie us to one another and the natural world. Mon-Fri from 8 am-5 pm through Jan. 31. Free. Chase Gallery, 808 W. Spokane Falls Blvd.

LIVING MATTER This exhibition exemplifies the artists’ approach to living things through ceramic, wood, paper, drift wood and oil slick. Thu-Sun from 11 am-6 pm through Jan. 27. The Art Spirit Gallery, 415 Sherman.


This exhibition of prints and objects provides new ways of seeing the familiar through the play of color and form. ThuSat from 4-7 pm through Jan. 28. Free. Terrain Gallery, 728 N. Monroe St.

FACING FIRE The artists featured in this exhibition explore fire as an omen and elemental force, as metaphor and personal experience. Jan. 21-May 13, Mon-Sat from

10 am-4 pm. Free. Jundt Art Museum, 200 E. Desmet Ave.

PERMANENT COLLECTION: BEST OF PHOTOGRAPHS This small temporary exhibit features photos by Ansel Adams, Robert Doisneau, Dorothea Lange, Paul Strand and Andy Warhol among others. Jan. 21-May 13, Free. Jundt Art Museum, 200 E. Desmet Ave.

VINTAGE POSTCARD TUNNEL BOOK Mel Hewitt teaches participants how to create a 3D scene with vintage postcards. Jan. 21, 10 am-2 pm. $35-$40. Art Salvage Spokane, 1925 N. Ash St. (509-598-8983)

RIVER RIDGE ASSOCIATION OF FINE ARTS MEETING The group inducts new officers, recognizes contributions from 2022 and gets a new art challenge. Jan. 25, 10 am-noon. Free. Spokane Art Supply, 1303 N. Monroe.

RAFAEL SOLDI: MOTHER TONGUE Photographs in which the artist examines how queerness and masculinity intersect with immigration, memory and loss. Jan. 26-March 3, Mon-Fri from 9 am-6 pm. Free. EWU Gallery of Art, 140 Art Building. (509-359-2494)


WHAT REALLY HAPPENED TO SPOKANE GARRY? Dr. David Beine of Great Northern University speaks about the life of Chief Garry, who died in 1892. Jan. 19, 4:45 pm. $10 (free for SPA members). Liberty Park Library, 402 S. Pittsburgh St.


toric/archaeological background of the early medieval royal palace of Yeavering, its importance for the development of early medieval Britain and how new findings are reshaping its understanding. Jan. 19, 6:30-8 pm. Free. The MAC, 2316 W. First Ave.

EMERGE OPEN MIC NITE Share music, poetry, spoken word, etc. Third Thursdays from 7-9 pm. Free. Emerge, 119 N. Second St.

A YEAR OF WRITING WITH SHARMA SHIELDS: THE FAIRYTALE FOREST In this monthly series, local author Sharma Shields discusses fairytale writing and helps participants write their own imaginative stories. Jan. 21, 10:30 am-noon. Free. Liberty Park Library, 402 S. Pittsburgh St.

POETRY AFTER DARK EWU MFA students lead discussions about craft elements, style and form in poetry. Second and fourth Wedndays from 7-8 pm. Free. Spark Central, 1214 W. Summit Pkwy.

PIVOT SPOKANE: TREASURE Six local stories of hidden treasure, diamonds in the rough and new discoveries. $10 suggested donation. Jan. 26, 7 pm. Free. Washington Cracker Co. Building, 304 W. Pacific.

NABIL AYERS: THE INTERSECTION BETWEEN MUSIC, RACE & FAMILY Ayers is a musician, writer and record company executive. His book My Life in the Sunshine explores his search to connect with his father, vibraphonist and funk/soul/ jazz composer Roy Ayers. Jan. 27, 12:301:30 pm. Free. The Forge Theater, 404 Sweet Ave. n

JAN. 26TH -29TH 10AM-7PM THU-SAT | 10AM-4PM SUN TICKETS: $10 ADULTS $5 YOUTH (13-17) | KIDS UNDER 12 FREE! FREE PARKING! LIVE AND IN-PERSON at the Spokane Fair and Expo Center! 404 N HAVANA ST., SPOKANE VALLEY The Only Multi-Dealer Boat Show in the Inland Northwest!
JANUARY 19, 2023 INLANDER 51 T his little piggy pays. Go hog-wild: open a First5 Savings Account and earn 5.09% APY on your first $500.* *APY =annual percentage yield. APY is accurate as of last dividend declaration date. The 5.09% APY applies to first $500 saved; balances above $500, earn 0.25% APY. Rate subject to change, and may change after account is opened. No penalty for withdrawals. STCU membership is required to open account; fees may reduce earnings. One First5 account per person. Insured by NCUA. (509) 326-1954 |

An Elder Issue

New study shows big rise in emergency room visits for elderly cannabis users

Arecent study shows a dramatic increase in emergency room trips by older adults who use cannabis.

The study, from researchers at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine and published earlier this month in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, looked at all cannabis-related emergency room visits in California by adults age 65 and over from 2005 through 2019. It found such visits to the ER increased from 20.7 per 100,000 visits in 2005 to 395 per 100,000 visits in 2019, a 1,804 percent increase over that time. In raw numbers, there were just 366 such trips in 2005, compared with over 12,000 in 2019.

Reasons for these emergency room visits include but are not limited to injuries sustained while intoxicated, negative interaction with a prescription medication, preexisting condition and acute mental health issues.


Be aware of the differences in the law between Idaho and Washington. It is illegal to possess, sell or transport cannabis in the State of Idaho. Possessing up to an ounce is a misdemeanor and can get you a year in jail and up to a $1,000 fine; more than three ounces is a felony that can carry a fiveyear sentence and fine of up to $10,000. Transporting marijuana across state lines, like from Washington into Idaho, is a felony under federal law.

There are a number of factors contributing to the sharp increase in cannabis-related emergency room trips. Cannabis use among older adults has been on the rise for decades, and stigma around its use has been declining as legalization has expanded in recent years. Though, notably, the researchers did not find any correlation between the availability of recreational cannabis and the rise in emergency room visits — their findings saw the increase level off in the wake of California legalizing recreational cannabis.

For those elderly users who may have consumed cannabis when they were younger, the effects of today’s product can be unrecognizable. A 2020 study from the University of Bath in England found that THC concentrations in recreational cannabis had risen 14 percent from 1970 to 2017.

“I do see a lot of older adults who are overly confident, saying they know how to handle it — yet as they have gotten older, their bodies are more sensitive, and the concentrations are very different from what they may have tried when they were younger,” Benjamin Han, the study’s lead researcher, told UC San Diego Today

There has also been an increase in use of cannabis as an alternative medical treatment, and the authors note that many older adults view the risks of cannabis use as less serious than that of prescription drugs. The study notes that many traditional medical screenings lump cannabis use in with that of illicit drugs like cocaine, which can lead to dishonest responses about cannabis consumption. The authors call for more honest and frank discussions about cannabis use in traditional medical settings.

“Asking about cannabis use and providing education about its use should be a part of routine medical care for older adults,” the study concludes. n

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