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SEWER MONSTER THE MIX OF DIRTY WATER AND TAXES PAGE 8

VINTAGE FASHION WHERE TO FIND OLD AND NEW TRENDS PAGE 20

OSCAR PREDICTIONS WHO WILL — AND WHO SHOULD — WIN PAGE 29

APRIL 22-28, 2021 | THINK GLOBAL. LIVE INLAND.

G N I K C A T S E U S S I N E E THE G R

China stopped . taking our crap w o n m e l b o r p r u It’s o PAGE 16

PLUS!

How we waste water; also, climate lessons from the pandemic

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April 26 - May 9

Together we can make a difference. Washington Trust Bank is proud to sponsor the KREM Cares Diaper Drive, along with Rosauers Supermarkets, in an effort to support Vanessa Behan and the services they provide in our community.

How can you help?

• Make a monetary donation at Washington Trust branch locations in Spokane and North Idaho. • Buy a $10 Diaper Drive bag at any Rosauers store or while shopping online. • Learn more and donate at KREM.com.

Each $10 donation helps provide a one-week supply of diapers and wipes to a family in need.

2 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021


INSIDE

Here for family through every stage, at any age.

VOL. 28, NO. 28 | COVER ILLUSTRATION: DEREK HARRISON

COMMENT NEWS COVER STORY CULTURE

5 8 14 20

FOOD FILM MUSIC EVENTS

26 29 31 33

I SAW YOU GREEN ZONE ADVICE GODDESS BULLETIN BOARD

35 36 38 39

EDITOR’S NOTE

O

ne upside of COVID-19 stopping the world in its tracks: Carbon emissions plummeted last year by nearly 2 billion metric tons — apparently, “the largest absolute decline in history.” Which begs the question: Can a cataclysmic event in the form of a global pandemic provide clues to besting another existential crisis like climate change? Staff reporter Wilson Criscione investigates (page 19). Also in this week’s GREEN-themed coverage, staff reporter Daniel Walters dives into the region’s water-sucking lawns (page 14), and Samantha Wohlfeil explores what the Northwest is doing to revive recycling now that China doesn’t want our rotten leftovers (page 16). Plus, we have our favorite live albums (page 31), the latest news hitting our local restaurants (page 26) and how the grisly story of a murdered gay Newport teen has gone viral (page 12). — JACOB H. FRIES, editor

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COMMENT STAFF DIRECTORY PHONE: 509-325-0634 Ted S. McGregor Jr. (tedm@inlander.com) PUBLISHER

WHAT ARE YOUR BEST AND/OR WORST HABITS WHEN IT COMES TO ENVIRONMENTALLY CONSCIOUS PRACTICES? BRIANA MULLENDORE: Best habit is using reusable bags from grocery shopping. In 2019, I only used five plastic bags. Thankfully, I can and always recycle plastic bags. I use silicone reusable bags instead of plastic sandwich bags. Worst: Drive everywhere instead of using the bus. Sometimes I walk, but I need/want to walk more.

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CHARLOTTE ROGERS THACKER: I’m conscientious about many things. But I don’t use the bus, and that is truly to be ashamed of. However, the bad practice I’m continually reminded of is using paper towels. I rip off little 2x4 pieces and sometimes smaller if it will do the job, but I feel guilty each time anyway. If God had intended us to desecrate forests and pollute our waterways with paper towels, she would not have invented the dish rag. CARRIE CLARK HAWKINS: I try to recycle everything possible. I rinse, remove labels when possible, and separate, like the cardboard around some plastic containers. I wish that companies would make this easier. What I am not good at? Using reusable bags. I do try to reuse grocery bags, but not always the best at it. ANNA BEER: Best: Turning old stuff into new stuff, especially random trash into art projects. Worst: Using disposable diapers instead of cloth with our toddler. STEVE PECK: Best: Began using cloth shopping bags over 40 years ago. Worst: Buying anything in glass bottles knowing that very little glass gets recycled.

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BRANDON WARREN: Best: I recycle. I also plant a pollinator garden. Worst: I take long showers. I do all of my thinking in the shower. BRE HATCHER: Best: Always picking up extra trash when foraging, fishing or spending anytime in nature. Worst: Buying products with a bunch of packaging. TIFFANY BROWN: Not my bad habit... My husband makes me crazy when recycling. He refuses to take the lid off whatever bottle or jar is to be recycled!! So I guess my habit is following behind him to take it off. n

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Living in Mr. Poopy’s World

Have we all become confused little birds?

When the pandemic’s past, will we mend our real-life communities or keep up the social media brawling? BY TARA ROBERTS

A

robin has taken up residence on my family’s car this spring. We call him Mr. Poopy — or more colorful names if the kids aren’t around — because that is what he does: bops from the mirror to the roof, puffing out his feathers and pecking at the metal, pooping. After several exasperated car washes, I finally Googled the problem. Male robins tend to see themselves in vehicles’ side-view mirrors, think they’ve spotted a rival and release the goopy floodgates to scare that jerk away.

6 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

We tried covering the mirror with a bag. Soon, there was Mr. Poopy again, fighting with the “other robin” in the paint. No matter what we do, he keeps finding a new reflection: in the doors, in the windows, in the tiny shiny patches on the roof rack. In Mr. Poopy’s world, there are enemies everywhere.


I thought of Mr. Poopy a few days ago, when a friend asked, “How are we going to fix our town when everyone has to see each other in person again?” I knew exactly what she meant. Our small town has never been free of jolts of public disagreement, but the volume seemed to turn up in the past year, especially in virtual spaces. LETTERS As in so many towns, the Send comments to comments sections of local editor@inlander.com. news organizations turned into boxing rings. People used social media to air every grievance, shouting from the digital rooftops things they’d never say to someone’s face. I’m guilty of participating in it — feeling the rush of righteousness as I pop off at a commenter, knowing I likely won’t see them at the coffee shop anytime soon (and if I do, I’ll be hiding behind my mask and mop of pandemic hair). People have been sounding the alarm for years on how the internet can hurt communities and foster hate and extremism, but the concern has become more urgent during the pandemic. In a recent Atlantic article, two members of Johns Hopkins University’s SNF Agora Institute contend that social media as it exists today promotes conspiracy thinking and mob mentality “in a world defined not by friendship but by anomie and alienation.”

“How are we going to fix our town when everyone has to see each other in person again?” “Instead of entering a real-life public square, [Americans] drift anonymously into digital spaces where they rarely meet opponents; when they do, it is only to vilify them,” they write. In other words: On the internet, we’re like Mr. Poopy. All alone, seeing enemies everywhere. When my friend asked me how to fix our town, we agreed we didn’t really know. But we knew it had to be rooted in remembering that our neighbors are more than who they might appear to be in the comments section. This doesn’t mean shutting up and only saying nice things. Kindness, fairness and justice take work, and even the most strongly built consensus is still going to leave people unhappy. But we have to resist the internet’s focus on impersonal “debate” and posturing for faceless crowds. We have to push back against the ways social media make us feel like something is always wrong, like problems can’t possibly be solved, like all we can do is scream at each other (or, well, shit on each other). Breaking our terrible online habits while reinvigorating our in-person connections will be essential in the coming months. I’m starting with myself — spending less time on social media and focusing on connection when I’m there, stepping away when I feel angry, asking how I can address problems by taking constructive actions rooted in loving my neighbor. The Atlantic writers advocate for reenvisioning the structure of social media (and their insights are totally worth reading in full). I’ve also seen amazing ideas for building community, online and in person, right here in the Inlander, in “27 ways to make the Inland Northwest an even better place to live,” Edmundo M. Aguilar’s column about radical love and CMarie Fuhrman’s column about the power of stories to create empathy. As our communities contend with illness, violence and loss, we have a choice. We can engage each other in ways that honor our shared humanity, or keep pouring out our worst impulses like confused little birds, raging at the image of ourselves. n Tara Roberts is a writer and college journalism adviser who lives in Moscow with her husband, sons and poodle. Her work has appeared in Moss, Hippocampus and a variety of regional publications. Follow her on Twitter @tarabethidaho.

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APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 7


GOVERNMENT

A FORTUNE IN SEWER WATER An unenforced wastewater tax could make the city of Spokane richer — off the backs of neighboring towns BY DANIEL WALTERS

The Spokane County Regional Water Reclamation Facility, on Freya Street, has become a potential cash cow for the city of Spokane — and a source of conflict with other local governments. DANIEL WALTERS PHOTO

8 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

T

hink of it as the bureaucratic equivalent to stumbling across a winning lottery ticket stuck in a sewer grate, though Spokane City Councilwoman Candace Mumm doesn’t put it in quite those terms. “We found a piece of paper in a copier tray,” she says. But that piece of paper — an “unfinished business” memo from former City Administrator Theresa Sanders referencing an unenforced tax — could result in millions of dollars being added to Spokane’s coffers every year. On the other hand, it could also take millions from smalltown taxpayers and ignite a legal war between the city and Spokane County officials. It had been right under the council’s noses this entire time. Since 2005, Spokane city code has said that any utility business operating a “public wastewater collection and treatment system” inside the city would be charged 20 percent of gross income in taxes. The city of Spokane’s own wastewater treatment facility near Riverside State Park has been paying this kind of tax for decades. For city residents, that’s meant that beyond simply shelling out enough utility taxes to keep the plant running, they’ve been paying into the city’s general fund as well. But in 2011 — at the opposite end of town, but still within city limits — Spokane County had opened its own wastewater treatment facility. And despite the city’s law, the county hasn’t paid the city a dime of those wastewater taxes. ...continued on page 10


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NEWS | GOVERNMENT “A FORTUNE IN SEWER WATER,” CONTINUED... “The people outside the city limits have had a tax holiday for pretty much a decade,” says Mumm. “And that probably needs to be addressed.” From the way several members of the council see it, the city law doesn’t just allow the city to tax the county; it requires it. The city has to apply the law equally. “It sort of would be like if we didn’t collect taxes from the Subaru dealer in Spokane, but we collect it from the Lexus dealer,” says City Council President Breean Beggs. Start enforcing the tax, and Spokane’s general fund would have $6 million to $8 million extra to spend each year. But fortune for one city would mean misfortune for others. The costs would be passed onto other utility customers of the county wastewater treatment plant, like those in the cities of Spokane Valley, Liberty Lake and Millwood. “Close to 90 percent of the county’s wastewater reclamation facility is serving Spokane Valley citizens,” says Ben Wick, Spokane Valley’s mayor. Imagine how hard a suddenly imposed 20 percent tax on utilities would hit the Central Valley School District, he says. “The members of the Spokane City Council — they see dollar signs,” says Spokane County Commissioner Josh Kerns. He sees the proposal to enforce the tax as “textbook taxation without representation.” This month, Spokane Mayor Nadine Woodward convened leaders from Spokane, Spokane County and other impacted local towns to discuss the issue. But they quickly found they lacked clear answers to basic questions: Why did the county build their plant in a spot that exposed them to city taxes? And why had the city never enforced it? Answering these questions could be crucial in the fights ahead. “We’ll go do whatever we can to protect our taxpayers,” Kerns promises. “If that means legal action, then that means legal action.”

WHO KNEW?

Spokane County officials knew the politics of sewage could be messy. After all, this wasn’t the first time that the city of Spokane and Spokane County went to war over sewer pipes. Starting in 2003, a battle erupted between the two governments over the amount the city was charging the county to treat the sewage coming across city borders. The feuding parties finally reached a legal settlement in 2007, with an agreement that started with a big payment from the county to the city and then slowly whittled down the amount of utility taxes the county would pay over the next 15 years. Yet that deal only applied to the city’s Riverside plant. Back then, Spokane County Regional Water Reclamation Facility hadn’t been built yet. But with seemingly impossible new environmental standards looming and the city’s Riverside treatment plant unable to handle the sheer quantity of crap a growing population would soon be flushing their way, local governments were scrambling to bring another plant online. “As a region we were pressed up against the wall with regard to running out of capacity,” former County Commissioner Todd Mielke recalls. “Everybody was panicked by that.” Spokane County Environmental Services Director Kevin Cooke says that when choosing a location for their new plant, the county focused on factors like elevation and proximity to high-capacity sewer lines — all considerations that didn’t “have much to do with whether it’s in

10 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

the city of Spokane or not.” That’s how they landed on North Freya, at the site of a former cattle market, in East Spokane’s industrial core and just barely inside Spokane city borders. While Cooke wasn’t director back then, he says he doesn’t believe the department expected the choice of location could expose the county to a tax hike from the city. When the Inlander asks whether the county’s past conflict with the city — along with an eagerness to work together — may have caused the county to dismiss the possibility of a future confrontation, Cooke agrees. “I think we were weary of the battle,” Candace Mumm YOUNG KWAK PHOTO Cooke says. “I don’t think anybody anticipated that we would be arguing about it again.” Mielke, however, says the possibility of city officials applying the 20 percent tax to the county’s facility did come up briefly — almost as “a blip” — during discussions with former Spokane Mayor Mary Verner’s administration before the plant was built. “We had a very spirited dialogue about that. We felt that was just a financial grab,” Mielke recalls. “We did talk about how we felt it was not right for them to be taxing county residents.” But ultimately, Mielke says, Verner’s administration was more interested in working to improve the region’s environmental infrastructure than getting a bit more tax revenue. Mayor David Condon, who defeated Verner in 2011, could have tried to tax the county’s new treatment plant as a way to achieve his promise to keep utility taxes low. But instead, multiple former officials from the Condon administration tell the Inlander that his team put the county wastewater facility taxation question on the backburner rather than risk damaging the relationships with other local governments. “We spent a lot of my career trying to build cooperation and trying to build partnerships, and we got a heck of a lot of things done because of that,” says Rick Romero, the city’s former utilities director. “Given the fact that we were trying to build cooperative government projects, it didn’t seem like something I wanted to push.” It’s not something that the current mayor, Nadine LETTERS Woodward, wants to push Send comments to either. editor@inlander.com. “Her nature is to collaborate first,” city spokesman Brian Coddington says. But with the way the city’s law reads, she might not have much of a choice.

are a few exceptions built in. In 2009, for example, a City Council that included now-County Commissioner Al French cleared the runway for an annexation by excluding the Spokane International Airport’s businesses from utility taxes. But there’s no exemption for the county’s treatment plant. But if the problem is the city code, Commissioner Kerns argues, then the city can change the code. Why not carve out an exception for the county? The councilmembers haven’t exactly leaped at that opportunity, arguing that any change needs to be fair for everyone. “These kinds of things need to be equally assessed,” Councilwoman Mumm says. But other local leaders counter that it’s absurd to pretend like the city “taxing” itself — which they see as little more than sending funds to one city budget page instead of another — is anything close to equivalent to one city taking money from the citizens of another. After all, a similar tax is levied on the Avista power company, but in that case, only Spokane residents pay it. “You can collect on your taxpayers, but you shouldn’t collect on our taxpayers,” says Millwood Mayor Kevin Freeman. Yet Beggs, the council president, argues that Washington state Supreme Court rulings give the city the power to do just that and actually, if they don’t enforce it, they could be sued by their own taxpayers. Spokane City Councilwoman Lori Kinnear says the city’s legal department is saying that enforcing the tax is a necessity.

“You can collect on your taxpayers, but you shouldn’t collect on our taxpayers.”

THE CODE WAR

Despite the many years of detailed contracts or memos between the city and the county about the Spokane County Regional Water Reclamation Facility, Cooke says he isn’t aware of any written agreement with the city over how it will — or won’t — tax the facility. “I think if there was, this would be a much simpler matter,” Cooke says. By contrast, the city code appears to be clear. There

Instead of fighting it, Kinnear says, the region should come together to agree on the best way to spend the revenue. Last year, the council voted to levy a one-tenthof-1-percent sales tax to raise $5.8 million a year for affordable housing, but only if the city couldn’t find another source of revenue by April 1 — like, say, the new wastewater plant revenue. By now, that deadline has passed, and the new sales tax is taking effect, but the City Council is looking for opportunities to use the millions of wastewater tax revenue. “We could partner with the county or the city or the Valley on a mutually agreeable project. … We could reduce everybody’s utility tax,” Kinnear says. “Right now, we’re trying to get past the anger from those who don’t want this to happen.” In theory, Freeman says that he’s open to the idea of using a wastewater tax for regional projects as long as there’s a clear connection to the utility — like using it to reduce stormwater runoff or clean up the river. “[But] if you, as the city of Spokane, are saying, ‘We’re going to tax this plant because it’s there and we can,’ then I have heartburn,” Freeman says. But to county commissioners, it’s a lot worse than heartburn: It’s something that could unravel years of citycounty collaboration. “I worry about whether we are going to be able to maintain a cooperative relationship when one jurisdiction starts to talk about levying tax on another,” Commissioner French says. “That’s a problem. That very well could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.” Meaning? “Litigation,” French says. n danielw@inlander.com


NEWS | DIGEST

ON INLANDER.COM FIND EVEN MORE OPINION AND ANALYSIS

THE DOWNTOWN STADIUM YOU NEVER WANTED HENRY McNULTY weighs in on the debate about locating a stadium in the downtown area, next to the Spokane Civic Theatre, where McNulty served as music director before the pandemic. Among other things, he writes, “Several years ago, an advisory vote was put before the public regarding a new stadium downtown to replace the aging Joe Albi. The public said ‘no.’ “Apparently ‘no’ means something different now. The same essential proposal is back from the dead with special interests propping up the corpse à la Weekend at Bernie’s. It also enjoys the unquestioning support of many citizens, most of whom have yet to hear a cohesive counterargument. “That’s because there has been no meaningful discussion of the issue, at least not from both sides.”

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Now Open All Day 8am-8pm IT’S TIME TO CHANGE THE NORTH CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL ‘INDIANS’ MASCOT JENNY SLAGLE, a member of the Yakama Nation and the Spokane Public Schools Board (above), examines the use of Indians as North Central’s mascot. She writes, “We have tried before to change the Native imagery at NC with some success. They no longer cross the stage holding a ‘savage tomahawk’ like they did for many graduating classes and instead have access to a respectful eagle feather staff with four feathers representing the four classes of freshmen to seniors. Cheerleaders no longer lead cheers in ‘traditional’ buckskin dresses. This indicates that change is a process, not an event. The mascot/symbol change is another step in Truth and Reconciliation, but first we have to get the Native story right.”

WA N T T O R E AC H U S ? • Email comments and letters to the editor to editor@inlander.com. • Send story ideas and tips to tips@inlander.com. For more secure ways to share information, visit Inlander.com/tips. • To support the Inlander’s brand of independent, local journalism, consider becoming an Inlander Insider. Visit Inlander.com/insider.

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NEWS | CRIME

Using TikTok, Pepper Fox has brought more attention to the murder of her son, Jason.

Justice for Jason

WILSON CRISCIONE PHOTO

As the story of a murdered gay Newport teen goes viral on TikTok, authorities still haven’t figured out a motive BY WILSON CRISCIONE

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or months, Pepper Fox has been pleading for the world to pay attention to the murder of her son, Jason. While authorities have yet to determine a motive, Pepper is convinced that Jason, 19 at the time of his death, was killed in Newport, Washington, because he was gay. She’s spread that message both to the media and the internet. And last month, that message went viral. “This is my attempt to get ahold of Ellen Degeneres and Lady Gaga,” Pepper Fox says on a TikTok Jason Fox video. Josh Helfgott, LGBTQ+ advocate with more than 3.3 million Tik Tok fans, stitched that to his own post and gave a response. “I’m not Gaga, but you want your son’s story to go viral, and I think I can help,” Helfgott says, explaining what’s been reported about Jason’s murder. That TikTok post has garnered more than 1 million likes. The hashtag #justiceforjasonfox has nearly 13 million views overall, and Pepper’s own TikTok profile has taken off as well. “I couldn’t believe it,” Pepper tells the Inlander. “This really hit hard for a lot of people at home.” Pepper says she has evidence proving her son was killed because he’s gay, but law enforcement in Pend Oreille County remains hesitant to say

his sexuality was the reason he was killed. Four men have been charged with murder in connection with his death. While search warrants indicate Fox had previously had confrontations with those men, investigators have yet to put together a clear picture of what happened the night of Jason’s death. “I’m glad that people are interested and paying attention,” says Glenn Blakeslee, Pend Oreille County sheriff. “I hope people will reserve judgment until we get to court and facts can be presented in a thorough manner.”

T

he night Jason was killed, just past midnight on Sept. 14, 2020, he sent a relative the address of Timber River Ranch, a wedding venue where he planned to meet friends. Jason was uneasy about going because he didn’t want Riley Hillestad to be there, court records show. He asked the person encouraging him to come out, Claude Merritt, if Hillestad would be there before going. “Where’s ur place and is it fr not Riley?” Jason asked on social media, using “fr” as a shorthand for “for real,” court records say. “Like I fr wanna kick it, I just ain’t down for drama.” Jason was killed that night, and his body was found weeks later buried in a shallow grave at the ranch. In police interviews, the four men charged with murder — Hillestad, Merritt, Matthew Raddatz-Freeman and Kevin Belding — all indicated they were at the ranch that night, but none admitted personally to killing Jason. A witness indicated that Hillestad that night operated a skid steer, a type of excavator, around the area where Jason’s body was located. Investigators have access to social media


records that reveal how Jason had a recent history with the men accused of murdering him. A Google account Pepper provided to deputies contained nude photos of Merritt, along with photos of other unidentified men, according to a search warrant. There were also screenshots of text conversations with Jason involving threats back and forth, but investigators have evidently not been able to confirm the identity of the people in those texts. Investigators have screenshots of a text conversation between Raddatz-Freeman and Fox that took place on June 27, months before Jason’s death. Both appear to be threatening each other and referencing a previous altercation. At one point, according to the search warrant, Raddatz-Freeman says, “I wasn’t playing around that night if you hadn’t of backed up your car like you did you probably wouldn’t be here man.” This conversation LETTERS took place three days after Fox Send comments to made a harassment report to editor@inlander.com. the Pend Oreille County Sheriff’s Office saying that RaddatzFreeman swung a pipe at his car and then bullied Fox into giving up money. A month later, on July 31, Fox made a malicious mischief report to the sheriff’s office saying that both Hillestad and Raddatz-Freeman smashed the windshield of his car. Fox at the time said that Hillestad had an assault rifle and yelled “about how he wanted to shoot” Fox, a search warrant says. Afterward, Fox posted on Facebook calling the two “the biggest pieces of shit I’ve ever met in my whole life,” saying they destroyed his windshield after blaming Fox for someone taking their license plate, the warrant says.

“I think there’s a pretty good argument to be made that it is a hate crime.” Pepper says she has since been able to get into Jason’s iCloud account, where she’s learned more about Jason’s history with the people in jail for his murder. Investigators requested a warrant for that account. “Pepper Fox continues to claim on social media that she has information proving that the murder of Jason Fox was a hate crime and should be prosecuted as such,” the warrant says. “I believe that Jason’s iCloud accounts likely contain more information that is relevant to this investigation.” A judge granted a warrant for those records on April 6. Pepper believes it will prove that the murder of her son was a hate crime. “It’s so heartbreaking,” she says. “It’s so hard to look at some of this stuff.”

M

ichael Fox, Jason’s father, says he’s glad that people on TikTok are angry about the murder of his son. “It shouldn’t have happened regardless of the motive,” Michael Fox says. Previously, he was skeptical that the evidence in the case would rise to the level of a hate crime. But having seen more evidence since then, he’s a bit more confident that it is. “I think there’s a pretty good argument to be made that it is a hate crime,” he says. Still, he says things have been exaggerated on TikTok that he’s uncomfortable with. Specifically, he says he’s seen some people say Jason was tortured and dismembered. Authorities have said that is not true. “I don’t see how that’s going to help,” he says. But Pepper says the attention on social media has reminded people that it’s still difficult to grow up gay, especially in a rural town. She says because of that attention, she was able to help lead a Pride parade in Newport earlier this month in honor of her son. “It hit a heartstring with a lot of people. There’s a lot of gay men who either grew up in rural areas or their parents rejected them after they came out as gay,” Pepper says. “He could have been them.” n

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APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 13


THE

N E E R G E U ISS

14 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021


EARTH DAY

April 22 is Earth Day, first held in 1970 as a way to thrust the idea of protecting the planet into the national discussion. You’ll find a variety of local celebrations and forums marking the occasion this year; several are listed at Inlander.com/events.

WASTE WATER

The city of Spokane wants you to ditch your lawn — or maybe just water it a little less BY DANIEL WALTERS

S

pokane is synonymous with water, water everywhere. The city’s logo features a bridge over a waterfall. A raging river runs through downtown. The entire region is powered by hydroelectricity. During the summer, practically everyone knows someone who refers to going to a lake as going to their lake. We sit on top of a massive aquifer that gives us crystal clear drinking water. “That makes water very affordable for our region,” says Kristen Zimmer, the city’s conservation program manager. For the lowest tiers, Spokane water bills are 15 times less expensive than in Seattle. For the utility bill payer, cheap water is a blessing. But it’s one that makes it easy to squander the resource. The average amount of water used per person in the United States is 88 gallons. But in Spokane, we use over 200 gallons per day. “As far as conservation, we’re not very, uh, ‘on board with it’ at this point in time,” Zimmer says. “For some people it’s still a dirty word.” The problem isn’t long showers or an excess of dishwashing. “Wintertime, we do pretty good,” Zimmer says. But it’s the summer that’s the issue. “Our water use quadruples in the peak of the summer,” Zimmer says. “Every year, no matter how dry or how kind of wet, it might be. ... Unfortunately, we have to build our entire water system for those three or four months of the year.” Above all, blame lawn care. “Quite frankly a lot of us love green grass in the summer; because of that, water consumption is high and has traditionally been high,” says Spokane County Commissioner Al French. Grassy lawns are artificial constructs, relics of medieval days when ostentatious displays of wealth meant creating hedge mazes and close-trimmed green expanses. But over the centuries, that standard trickled down to the expectations of the suburbs. In Seattle, where rainfall is so common that it’s a part of their municipal brand, that’s not a problem. But Spokane is Ethan and Kirsten Angell replaced their lawn semi-arid, so the with water-efficient plants as part of the lush lawns take a SpokaneScape program. YOUNG KWAK PHOTO lot of water. At the end of last July, Zimmer says, Spokane water users pumped 198 million gallons of water, setting a local one-day record. It wasn’t even particularly hot that day, she says, and with the pandemic on, you couldn’t find those above ground kiddie pools to use. “I think it was just everyone staying at home trying to entertain their kids,” Zimmer says. “Thank goodness our summers are short, I guess.”

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here’s an obvious question, of course: If Spokane has so much quick and easy access to water, why should we care if we’re using a lot of water? First, local conservationists point out, the environmental damage starts happening a long time before the water runs out. Spokane’s water system and its river are two straws, to borrow a metaphor, drinking from the same milkshake. The more we pump to water our lawns, the lower the river will fall during the hot summer months. “Then that’s just less river environment for trout and other creatures to live in,” says Spokane Riverkeeper Jerry White. “It’d be like, if we said, ‘OK, everybody in Spokane, in the critical period of the summertime, we’re going to reduce your livable space to just a few acres in the middle of the city.’” For Spokane’s iconic redband trout, which depend on cold water flows from the aquifer to survive, White says, the overcrowding is particularly problematic. “That becomes an ecological bottleneck,” White says. “Only the strongest can make it in there, right?” To that recipe, add climate change. Spokane Public Works Director Marlene Feist says that the warming climate means more years with a poor mountain snowpack. “We potentially have drought conditions in the summertime,” says Feist, who replaced Scott Simmons as director earlier this month. In the meantime, the population is rapidly growing, especially in neighboring Kootenai County, which rests on the same aquifer. “It’s a deep concern when you have simply the number of accounts increasing. People coming from Texas, Colorado, California,” White says. “More stress on the river and more people watering their lawns.”

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here’s a simple economic solution, of course. If we overuse water because water is too cheap, make it a lot more expensive. But Commissioner French had a front-row seat to the political peril of doing that back in 2011 when he was on the Spokane City Council. “[Mayor] Mary Verner tried to address that issue when she was running for reelection. Remember the increase in water rates to try to change people’s habits?” French says. “That led to her getting unelected.” Her opponent, David Condon, campaigned on the promise that he could upgrade Spokane’s water systems to be more environmentally sound without a steep water bill increase. But the comparatively inexpensive bills still lead to a lot of water consumption. “Over time, what we’re looking for is people to

change their patterns and their habits,” Feist says. “That’s the long play.” Part of the problem, Feist says, is that water users don’t really know what is happening in real time. It’s not like using cellphone data, where your phone alerts you when you go over a certain threshold. “What we’re not really able to give citizens is realtime feedback on their water use,” Feist says. “They’re still paying their summer water bills in some cases in November.” By upgrading the city’s utility billing system and upgrading their smart meters, they can make it easier for homeowners to change their habits. To start with, having a green lawn doesn’t mean you have to drench it with water every day. “I have neighbors already watering their lawns, and it’s freezing at night,” Zimmer says. Instead, water your lawn a little longer three times a week, and make sure you don’t do it in the middle of the day, when the water gets burned away by the heat of the sun. The city is trying to lead by example with its parks system — say, by, watering one half of a park one day, then the other half the next day instead of watering the whole park every day. Sometimes that means upgrading their irrigation system. And then there’s a more radical move the city is promoting to reduce the water consumption of your lawn: Get rid of it. That’s what Kirsten Angell and her husband, Ethan, homeowners in the Audubon neighborhood, did with their front lawn as part of the city’s “SpokaneScaping” program. “We’ve wanted to do it for years,” Angell says. “With COVID, it gave us that extra bit of time at home.” First, they got rid of all the thirsty grass. “We brought in some soil, created some topography — we brought in some very large boulders we got for free on Craigslist,” Angell says. “My husband brought in a low-flow spray sprinkler system. He built a couple arbors. We put in some flagstones for a path.” And they talked to Diane Stutzman at Desert Jewels Nursery, who connected them with a slew of plants that didn’t use much water, like Oregon sunshine, sedum, heucheras, penstemons, buckwheat and primrose. Since Angell and her husband qualified for the city’s “Spokanescaping” program — two years in a row — the city is paying them a total of $1,100 for the upgrade. “The whole neighborhood has stopped by — some of them were doubtful: ‘Why did we get rid of the lawn?’” Angell says. “A) We don’t like the look of a boring lawn. And B) water conservation is important. It takes a fraction of the amount of water, and it’s way more beautiful and interesting.” n

APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 15


THE

GREEN ISSUE

ENDING WISHFUL

RECYCLING Washington looks to complete the recycling loop in the state and demand that companies do more

T

he dirty truth about recycling is that a lot of material still ends up buried or burned. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency reports that less than 9 percent of all plastic in the U.S. is recycled (closer to 29 percent for the easiest-to-recycle plastics). Yet more plastic is being created every year. In a March episode of Last Week Tonight, John Oliver pointed out that production is skyrocketing: “Half of all plastics ever made have been produced since 2005.” Not helping matters is that at the curbside collection level, people often muddy the system by throwing the things they assume or hope are recyclable into their bins, making it harder for sorting centers to separate the garbage from the valuable materials. That creates problems down the road if you want that soda bottle you put into the recycling bin to actually end up being recycled into a new product. Not long ago, bales of plastics contaminated with garbage and other materials were regularly sent from the U.S. overseas to be

About three years ago, China announced that it would no longer take America’s highly contaminated recycled waste.

16 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

BY SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL melted into pellets or reprocessed to make new products. But about three years ago, China announced that it would no longer take America’s highly contaminated recycled waste. The new policy dictated: Either get the contamination near zero — a feat not plausible with current issues in our recycling chain — or take it somewhere else. About 70 percent of the plastic leaving the U.S. to be recycled was going to China, and the hard truth exposed by the change in policy was that a lot of that was still going to waste. A consultant hired by Washington state in 2020 to propose solutions for plastic usage pointed out that a combination of cheap oil, low demand for recycled plastic resins, cheap ocean shipping to Asia and lax controls on plastic exports “all contributed to a ‘recycling’ system for plastic” that doesn’t actually “reliably deliver environmental benefit.” All of that may seem bleak when coupled with the news that some areas are also reducing how often they pick up recyclable materials (for Spokane, service drops

to every other week starting in May), but some in the recycling biz say that may actually reduce the temptation to throw extra garbage into recycling bins. More importantly, with the added pressure to fix the system lately, the Pacific Northwest is moving toward policies that will not only better ensure materials are actually recycled, but will also hold companies more accountable for their choices.

CREATING A MARKET

While a lot of plastic is highly recyclable, you need companies that will actually convert it into usable raw material again, and then other companies that need that material to make their products. Recognizing the issues highlighted when China tightened its policies, Washington state lawmakers in 2019 directed the departments of Ecology and Commerce to form the Recycling Development Center, which is tasked with creating markets for recycled materials. ...continued on page 18


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APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 17


THE

GREEN ISSUE “ENDING WISHFUL RECYCLING,” CONTINUED...

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As written at the time the Senate passed its version of the measure, Senate Bill 5022, on April 7, bottles would need to be made with at least 15 percent post-consumer recycled plastic by 2023, a rate that rises to 25 percent in 2026 and then 50 percent by 2031. While some plastic industry experts have said it could be difficult or impossible to meet those goals under current conditions, others agree that requirements like that can create demand for recycled resins that aren’t popular because it’s cheaper to make brand new plastic. Driving demand for recycled materials is just one of 10 recommendations to come out of Cascadia Consultant Group’s 2020 study on plastics in the state — work that was also requested in 2019 by the Legislature. Another significant recommendation from the group includes creation of an “extended producer responsibility” or EPR, also known as “product stewardship.” EPR policies put more of the onus for a product’s end life on the companies that create them, says Alli Kingfisher, plastics policy specialist for Ecology. “Washington already has a number of examples of product stewardship, such as electronics recycling, how you’re now able to take electronics to a number of locations across the state,” Kingfisher says. “Paint is another one just getting started here in Washington. You no longer have to let all your cans dry out so you can throw them in the trash. You can instead return them to retailers or other locations.” An EPR program would cover many more products, and while lawmakers introduced a bill that would have done that this session, it didn’t advance. However, two of the other 10 recommended policy changes are included in SB 5022. “The environmental community is very happy the bill includes a ban on Styrofoam or expanded polystyrene in food containers, recreational coolers and packing peanuts,” says Heather Trim, who helped draft 5022 and is the executive director of the nonprofit Zero Waste Washington. “When we do beach cleanups, we see a lot of Styrofoam.” Rounding out the trifecta of proposed solutions: The legislation includes a new rule mandating that people need to ask to receive single-use food service products such as plastic utensils, straws, and condiments at restaurants rather than automatically getting them. Also, looking ahead, Trim says environmental groups hope to work on a massive overhaul of the state’s recycling system with more legislation next year. “We want to be able to take the metal, the plastic, the glass and have that all be processed here in Washington, creating jobs here,” Trim says. n

“Why would we ship it across the ocean for someone to make it into something when we could do it at home and build that circular economy?”

FIXING THINGS THROUGH POLICY

PAGE 22

craft beer week

“It was causing an ecological problem. … The U.S. has to deal with its own stuff,” says Kara Steward, the state’s Recycling Development Center coordinator, of the old method of shipping bales to Asia. “What the center is trying to do is build up the domestic demand for those materials. Why would we ship it across the ocean for someone to make it into something when we could do it at home and build that circular economy?” For the center’s part, helping connect sources of recycled goods with private industry could look like helping a pulp and paper mill get more of the cardboard being tossed out in the state every day, she says. Or it could look like connecting a company that has excess plastic waste with another that needs that particular source in order to make their packaging or product. The center is overseen by a 14-member advisory board with membership ranging from the manufacturing end of things to people with scientific expertise on cutting-edge techniques for recycling and reuse. While the pandemic delayed some work the Legislature requested, the center will soon be looking at the baseline of what’s happening with materials in the state now, and seeking opportunities for growth. Steward says that while she won’t have money to help private companies, in some cases she’s been able to connect someone who calls her looking for resources with someone else who has that answer. “We don’t have a big bank account, but I think the best thing we offer is facilitating the connections,” she says. For instance, Steward says, maybe a company has a machine to rip apart jeans and old T-shirts into thread that can be used to make new fabrics, but they need to know how to contact donation centers or textile manufacturing sites to better learn how they can divert even more material from dumpsters and landfills. The center may also eventually help connect people who have innovative ideas with a list of possible funding sources like grants, loans or other outside funding, Steward says. Plus, as more is learned about new ways to reduce, reuse and recycle materials in the state, and as more of the specific problems with material collection come to light, the center will be able to propose more solutions to lawmakers.

One solution the Washington State Legislature voted on this session includes requiring plastic beverage containers (and possibly other household bottles) be made with increasing amounts of post-consumer recycled content over the next decade.


LESSON

LEARNED? How experts say we can apply lessons from the pandemic to the climate crisis BY WILSON CRISCIONE

F

rom her home, under the flight path to the Spokane International Airport, Amber Lenhart usually hears the recurring roar of airplanes overhead. But that stopped a year ago. When the pandemic hit, days would go by without her hearing that familiar roar. It wasn’t just that people weren’t flying anymore. They weren’t driving either. The streets were emptier. Parking lots were vacant. “We saw that people can work remote, that we can do our jobs from home,” says Lenhart, who at one time worked for Pew Charitable Trusts, a nonprofit that aims to improve public policy. “In that job I would travel all over the country to Wisconsin, Hawaii, California, and I’d drive across three or four states a few times a month. And now we see we can do that all from our living rooms.” Staying home had a noticeable impact on carbon emissions, which plummeted globally last year by nearly 2 billion metric tons in 2020, “the largest absolute decline in history,” according to the International Energy Agency. Most of this was due to reduced travel, the IEA says. In 2021, emissions are back up again. Still, it can leave some experts wondering: Are there lessons the pandemic can teach us about how to combat climate change? Lenhart, a former health policy specialist for the Spokane Regional Health District, says the climate crisis is also a public health crisis. While a huge pause in travel isn’t sustainable, she hopes the experience of the last year may help people realize that it takes a collective approach, not an individualistic one, to tackle these issues. Brian Henning, the director and founder of Gonzaga’s new Center for Climate, Society and the Environment, has a similar hope. “One can hope that as we learn the lesson — or, at least some people have — about the urgency of following the best advice of public health officials, we should be following the best advice of our climate scientists who’ve been warning us for decades of this growing problem and the need to bend the curve on climate change as well,” Henning says.

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he COVID-19 pandemic thrust a change to daily life that many hadn’t experienced before. Some of the changes were positive for the environment: More people got into gardening, and that often meant replacing a lawn with gardening beds, reducing water use. More people are also growing their own food, cooking at home and spending time outside hiking or biking, Henning says. Those are things that at least help people be more attentive to surroundings, appreciating the environment, he says. “It made us sort of pause and reflect on what’s pos-

Staying home had a noticeable impact on carbon emissions, which plummeted globally last year by nearly 2 billion metric tons in 2020. sible and what’s desirable,” he says. “It just forced us to be more contemplative, more intentional about our lives. And so by disrupting the routine of wake up, go to work, come home, now our sense of what’s possible and our collective imagination has shifted a bit.” In the short term, however, those things have far less of an impact on the environment than the reduction in travel. And either way, shutting down the transportation industry isn’t the answer. “The big pause in the pandemic is sort of causing us to realize what’s possible, but it’s not a solution,” he says. Instead, Henning says it’s more important to clean the electricity grid. Washington’s 2019 Clean Energy Transformation Act, which commits the state to an electricity supply without greenhouse gas emissions by 2045, is a good example, he says. More electric vehicles and buses would help, too. He says about 40 percent of climate pollution emissions are affected by personal action, and the other 60 percent are “structural systemic issues that need to be addressed at that level.” Henning adds that a Clean Fuels Act in the state Legislature, which aims for a 20 percent reduction in the state’s car and truck pollution by 2035, would be a good step. As would the Climate Commitment Act in the Legislature that, among other things, puts a cap on greenhouse gas emissions. He adds that it’s important that communities are created in a way that doesn’t require constant car transportation. While working from home may have helped reduce transportation for a time, if it drives people to move out

YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

of city centers into suburban neighborhoods, that may turn out to be a negative for carbon emissions. Ideally, Henning says, communities would be created in a way that people can work, live and play all in one area without driving. “But we instead keep building communities that are solely residential on the outskirts, away from business,” Henning says. “So you have no choice but to be in your car all the time.”

W

hen everything first shut down a year ago, Lenhart was encouraged. “I felt at first that people were coming together around the issue, that people will recognize the importance of public health and listening to public health experts like the health officer,” she says. But it didn’t take long before that trust in the experts eroded. It wasn’t just former Spokane Health officer Bob Lutz who was forced out; health officers across the state and the country were ousted or quit in the midst of the pandemic, often due to political pressure. Now, Lenhart has more doubt that people can come together and face the climate crisis collectively. “I would hope that people take a lesson from this that we do need to act quickly on an issue that might not be so visible — just like COVID, they’re both invisible — and that we do need to take critical action,” she says. “But seeing how people have responded to COVID, I have mixed feelings about whether people will actually take this to heart.” n

APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 19


FASHION

Something Borrowed, Something New? DIY and vintage fashion fans embrace the importance of shopping secondhand BY SPENCER BROWN

T

here is a box in Tamra Brannon’s studio at Outlaw Woman that is full of about 20,000 charms that she has picked up from many places. These charms are meant for people to sort through and find ones that resonate with them to inspire a “story necklace.” “The signature thing of my pieces is that they tell a story and I try to tell people the story of why I made the piece that I made,” Brannon said. Outlaw Woman is a Garland District studio in which Brannon and team make jewelry, bags and other goods from found and donated materials. One of the reasons she works with found or vintage materials is because of the stories they tell. “One gal had a little rose, a hat, this state of Oklahoma, and a wing,” Brannon says. “I asked what that meant to her and she said, ‘My grandmother and I used to have tea parties every Sunday in her rose garden, and we would wear fancy hats, and I miss her so much.’ It’s

20 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

just really cool, stuff like that. It’s neat that people can find little pieces that wouldn’t make sense to anyone else except the person wearing the necklace. It’s so cool to make these pieces for the beautiful souls who walk through my store.”

T

he old adage “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” is not often thought about in regard to fashion. But between a surge in popularity of secondhand fashion and the COVID-caused reinvigoration of DIY crafting, the cultural fascination with thrifted and vintage items has never been stronger. For those who want to learn how to make jewelry or goods with leather, Outlaw Woman has many resources, including classes where she teaches every technique she knows. “People are really surprised how easy some leatherworking is and even some entry-level metal stamping,” Brannon says. “It’s neat to see how people can come in

Outlaw Woman’s Tamra Brannon. YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

and take a word that speaks to them and be able to personalize metal and make a custom piece for themselves. Even if it doesn’t turn out as what society deems as perfect, everything is a little janky and rickety, and that’s what makes them unique and awesome.” While the artistic aspect of self-expression is an important part of buying thrifted and vintage clothes, it isn’t the only reason to shop at local vintage stores. Secondhand clothes might be trendy, but they always have been the more sustainable option, which is what Fay Ripley, owner of Red Leaf Vintage, tries to instill in her customers. “I’ve been really trying to slowly educate people. I don’t want to be in your face, but I’m just like ‘Hey, it takes a lot of resources to make clothing,’” Ripley says. “It’s really ugly, the garment industry, and how fastfashion is made. … We don’t see what happens in other countries with how they make our clothing, so therefore I think we just kind of buy our clothing, and we don’t have to think about it.” Accessibility has a lot to do with the problem. With new clothes at a very cheap price becoming more and more accessible, many would opt to buy new rather than fix their old. “Back in the day, like in the ’50s or ’60s, if you had a hole or a rip it was mended, and you wore it again,” Ripley says. “Now we don’t really do that anymore, we throw it away and buy new because it is just so easy. With my vintage clothing, I have a seamstress, and she is always sewing and mending and just trying to keep the pieces going.” ...continued on page 22


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APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 21


CULTURE | FASHION “SOMETHING BORROWED, SOMETHING NEW?,” CONTINUED...

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t may seem counterintuitive to what all the thrifting Instagram accounts are saying, but buying thrifted and vintage clothes is new to many consumers who rely heavily on fast fashion. “I feel like vintage clothing or thrifted clothing has become more acceptable in the last couple years,” Ripley says. “There were many many years where if you wore thrifted clothing or vintage clothing people would be like ‘eww, that’s gross.’ Now it’s cool to wear thrifted and vintage clothing, and that also comes from many other things like celebrities wearing vintage clothing, or there’s movies and TV shows that are era pieces.” LETTERS While Ripley Send comments to is passionate about editor@inlander.com. sustainability, she emphasizes the fact that your wardrobe doesn’t have to be exclusively vintage. Even if you thrift something from last year, you are still giving the material extra life, she says. “I do like vintage mixing,” Ripley says. “I always encourage people that you don’t have to do full vintage, which can be difficult. There are people who wear let’s say ’40s and ’50s clothing, and they are usually full headto-toe vintage. But you can still wear your new clothing but still put in vintage and thrifted pieces.” When starting your journey at thrift stores, there are potential pitfalls. “The one thing I think people get confused about is that sometimes with vintage clothing they have sizes on them and that’s just not,” Ripley says. “If you look at certain sizes on certain clothing, that’s not really the true size.”

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electing the right piece is important. However, a second step that has become widely popular is the DIY aspect of it. From painting to embroidering, many have been adding small creative accents to their clothes. Hut No. 8 in Spokane Valley is a great place to learn about these skills. According to Hut No. 8 manager Justina Dokken, the staff has been learning various techniques online to teach customers during a DIY class the store recently debuted. “We based it off the ideas of a lot of paint and drink classes where people can get together and have fun times with their friends,” Dokken says. “We are all about sustainability. [At a recent class] we were able to give them three pairs of jeans to paint, embroider and distress. The next class we are doing is a T-shirt embroidering class.

ADULTS $399 YOUTH $289 FAMILY $1279 2 ADULTS + UP TO 3 YOUTH

LOCATED IN KELLOGG, IDAHO JUST 1 HOUR EAST OF SPOKANE

22 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

Refurbished goods tell stories at the Garland District’s Outlaw Woman.

YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

We are going to walk through different stitches, and if they want to crop them, we are going to have materials for that as well.” Buying clothes secondhand is a great way to express individuality and unleash your artistic side. According to both Brannon and Ripley, there are some amazing places in Spokane to check out and start shopping sustainably and locally. “It’s just amazing, the tears from people who say they aren’t creative and never realized they do have a story, and there is a journey and a path they are walking,” Brannon says. “When people ask me what I do, I say ‘I have a jewelry and a leather goods company, and tell people’s stories.’ They give me the strangest looks, but it’s what I do. One scrap of metal at a time.” n


CULTURE | DIGEST

Not So Bad BE A BROADWAY BABY We’re still a ways off from seeing Broadway shows in Spokane, but a new program gives theater fans a chance to see the best of the best, right now, while supporting our local Best of Broadway series. A BroadwayHD subscription, ranging from three months ($27) to a year ($99), offers access to a range of recorded shows, from musicals to dramas, ballet performances to concerts from Lincoln Center. Viewable via app or online, the shows could fill that spot in your soul needing a little live entertainment. And if you order from the special link broadwayhd.com/p/ best-of-broadway, you’ll support local Broadway producers WestCoast Entertainment, too. (DAN NAILEN)

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BY DAN NAILEN

ournalists are widely considered a cynical lot. I don’t think there’s any arguing that a typical reporter, whether they’ve been working two years or 25, has seen and heard things that make them question humanity’s need to exist. Regularly encountering the dispiriting or horrific motivations of a shady politician, a violent criminal or an unethical businessman in your work — even through your peers’ stories — takes a toll on your psyche. Even so, I’d argue journalists are an impossibly optimistic bunch. They choose reporting as a career despite its low standing in the public’s esteem because they generally do believe that humanity is good. I got a vivid reminder of this when I recently volunteered at a vaccination clinic at Spokane Arena. I wish I could say my motivations were purely altruistic, a desire to pitch in to this monumental global effort to quash the pandemic.

THE BUZZ BIN

THIS WEEK’S PLAYLIST There’s noteworthy new music arriving in stores and online April 23. To wit: TODD SNIDER, First Agnostic Church of Hope and Wonder. The witty wordsmith is back in fine funky form. ART D’ECCO, In Standard Definition. If joyful retro glam is your jam, jump on this set by the analogobsessed Canadian. DINOSAUR JR., Swept It Into Space. The trio’s been on a hot streak with recent releases, and you can bet right now their Knitting Factory show next February will be the loudest of 2022. (DAN NAILEN)

There was a little of that, but a lot more of me wanting to get vaccinated as quickly as possible, since my official Washington state phase was still weeks or months away. Volunteering with the Medical Reserve Corps of Eastern Washington (as I did) or one of the other area organizations working with vaccine sites meant I could get a dose at the end of a shift if there were any “extra” that would otherwise go to waste. My job was to filter three lines of folks toward the tables where they would get jabbed. Over the course of a few hours I got to see several hundred people make their way to their first or second Moderna doses. And it was awesome. Some were excited. Some were nervous. Some were wondering why they couldn’t get the Johnson & Johnson single-dose vaccine instead. (This was pre-J&J pause.) But almost all of them were happy! One woman, probably 75 or so, dismissed me when I apologized for a delay in the line moving along, proclaiming the whole process a “miracle.” It really is, right? A year ago we entered this pandemic full of questions and fears. And while most of us tried to navigate the bumpy emotional and economic COVID roller coaster, scientists were finding a way to save our butts, and doing it fast. If the “customers” at the vax site were friendly, so too were my fellow volunteers, as were the National Guard soldiers on hand to make the operation run like clockwork. Considering I hadn’t been in a crowd bigger than like five people in a year, I couldn’t have asked for a sunnier reentry than standing in a Spokane Arena hallway sharing some joy at a brief glimpse of light at the end of the tunnel. n

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE Novelist Kazuo Ishiguro is a master of withholding, from the plot twist he reveals halfway through Never Let Me Go to the isolation he inflicts on the lonely butler at the heart of his masterpiece The Remains of the Day. The Nobel Prize winner is back with Klara and the Sun, and it’s another intriguing slow burner, set in a world populated by lifelike robots that follow their owners’ orders. Our narrator, Klara, is a so-called Artificial Friend, chosen by a sickly little girl and her overprotective mother, and we follow Klara as she acclimates to the world of human emotions and learns a secret about her adoptive family that’s as sinister as it is tragic. (NATHAN WEINBENDER)

A TRUE BONUS Waxahatchee’s Saint Cloud album was one of my favorites of 2020, and to celebrate its one-year anniversary, Katie Crutchfield recently added three killer covers that you can hear on Spotify (look for Saint Cloud +3) or your digital outlet of choice. Hearing Crutchfield lend her voice to Lucinda Williams’ “Fruits of My Labor,” Dolly Parton’s “Light of a Clear Blue Morning” and Bruce Springsteen’s “Streets of Philadelphia” is a real treat. (DAN NAILEN)

SO FRESH, SO PINK Brick West Brewing Co. recently debuted a new spring seasonal. The Pink Boots IPA, a collaboration with neighbors Whistle Punk Brewing, is brewed with a hop blend from the Pink Boots Society — a national organization that provides resources and education for women in the brewing industry. The 2021 blend features Cashmere, Ahtanum, Citra, Loral and Sabro hops from Yakima. Proceeds from the Brick West and Whistle Punk version of the beer will also be donated to the Jonah Project, a local nonprofit that advocates for survivors of human trafficking. (DEREK HARRISON)

APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 23


CULTURE | FASHION

Time Travelers New shop Teleport Vintage + Co. offers vintage clothing and wares to suit any taste or budget BY CHEY SCOTT

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ome of the region’s top vintage purveyors are pooling their collective treasure-hunting talents and tastes for bygone decades at the newly opened Teleport Vintage + Co. The shop, located just north of the downtown Spokane core in a historic building (many may remember it as the original home of Stella’s Cafe), opened in early March and has already seen an outpouring of community

24 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

Teleport Vintage + Co. goes beyond clothes in its retro treasures. support, says owner Paul Forster. “I’m not sure if that is the hype of a new store, or the community being really thirsty for a store like this,” Forster says, “but the reception has been completely and utterly humbling, and it feels good that people are enjoying and appreciating it. To me, it’s just a store that I would like to go shop in.” Forster has been a figure in the local vintage scene for many years and long knew that if he ever opened his own shop he wanted to ditch the typical vendor-mall-style model of leasing designated floor space to other sellers. At Teleport, each partner instead agrees to a set split of their sales (the vendor keeps 70 percent, Teleport gets 30 percent), and each sellers’ inventory is mixed together throughout the space, instead of in individual booths, to offer a more cohesive shopping experience. “All these people have their own strengths, and they all bring something a little different to the store,” Forster says. “The merchandise inside Teleport is highly curated by the team. All these people have a great eye and have a community outside Teleport that helps them find their stuff.” Teleport’s clothing vendors include Fay Ripley of Red Leaf Vintage, Tony Brown of Vagabond Soundtrack and Mike Kay of Time Machine Workshop. A good chunk of the inventory is also from Forster’s own vintage stock.

STEPHANIE GUERRA PHOTO

In addition to clothing, several sellers specialize in home goods like textiles, industrial fixtures and midcentury furniture, while others upcycle and customize vintage pieces. Teleport is also a storefront for the locally made natural skincare line Kani Botanicals and Spokane-based leather goods brand Westward Leather. Forster says one of the major benefits of the shop’s partnership model is that he can simply call up vendors when, say, inventory in cutoff denim shorts in certain sizes is low, or if vintage graphic tees are flying off the shelves. “[Vendors] don’t get that at other places they sell,” he explains. “The ownership there isn’t focused on people’s spaces; they don’t know how to go in and say, ‘You’re out of this, you need more of this.’”

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ortunately for both Teleport’s vendors and customers, vintage fashion is experiencing a major surge in interest. “I definitely know that vintage is the most popular it’s ever been at this point in time. In the past five to seven years, vintage has exploded; and a lot of that, I think, is people are more aware that fast fashion is not good,” Forster says. In the clothing industry, fast fashion describes inexpensively made, mass-produced, trend-driven pieces, often made by low-paid laborers in poor working condi-


tions. Yet with high demand for cool clothing from bygone days, there’s also scarcity of goods — vintage sourcing in the Inland Northwest has become increasingly competitive — and higher prices for popular decades or rare, one-of-a-kind pieces. Sourcing, Forster says, “is a never-ending process because it’s not like a normal retail thing where you buy brand-new products and you can always buy that to fill your shelves.” In vintage, “you never know when you’re going to get that next thing.” Forster has worn and collected vintage fashion since he was a kid, having adopted the lifestyle and an appreciation of older, high-quality goods from his parents and grandparents. “I grew up dumpster diving when I was a kid, and my mom and grandma dragged me to estate sales and thrift stores,” he says. “My grandfather also knew the value of a dollar, and I learned that really quickly, and how to reuse and recycle and not be so wasteful.” While Teleport stocks rare items like 1950s leather motorcycle jackets and hardto-find World War II-era workwear, there are also $15 T-shirts and denim below new retail prices. Thanks to its diverse mix of vendors, shoppers can find all kinds of clothing from most decades of the 20th century. Compounding a growing desire among vintage seekers to boycott fast fashion’s unsustainable practices and ethics, Forster says celebrity influence on younger generations has also helped spur vintage fashion’s latest resurgence. “Clothing — everyone needs clothing, and a lot of people now understand they can go out and find these pieces and almost turn your body into a canvas,” he says. “The clothing you put on your body is a statement, and there is a lot more nuance in vintage.” n Teleport Vintage + Co • 917 W. Broadway Ave. • Open Wed-Sun 12-6 pm (Mon/ Tue by appt.) • Instagram. com/teleportvintageandco

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DINING

Call It a

Comeback South Perry’s Southern-style eatery Casper Fry reopens after a yearlong hiatus with a new chef, menu BY CHEY SCOTT

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Taylor Rainwater is now running the Casper Fry kitchen. YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

26 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

t one point this past year, Casper Fry restaurant in South Perry almost became another pandemic business casualty. Its owners seriously debated closing for good while struggling to keep their other two restaurants, Durkin’s Liquor Bar and Madeleine’s Cafe, afloat amid ever-changing health regulations and decreased sales as COVID-19 cases peaked and slowed over the past year. In early March, though, after being shuttered for just shy of a full year, the Southern food spot finally reopened its dining room. There’s a new chef at the helm, too, and a revamped menu that leans more toward casual fare than previous iterations of the restaurant, which often edged into fine dining territory. “When we shut down in March, like everyone else, we didn’t know if we would reopen or not,” says Casper Fry co-owner Deb Green. She owns and runs the three restaurants alongside her son Ben Poffenroth and daughter Megan Van Stone. “When we started to open the other restaurants at the end of [last] May, we’d had all this time as a family to think about what the future of Casper Fry was going to be. And when we got the staff back together, we basically said ‘Look, we don’t know what the future is, and we don’t know if there is one,’” she continues. “That was the honest truth. We didn’t want to hold them; they needed the opportunity to go out and find other employment.” With many of Casper Fry’s former front- and back-of-house employees having moved on, the family brought on head chef Taylor Rainwater. He’s spent the last several months reworking the menu to better fit the restaurant’s new aim as a relaxed, neighborhood-friendly spot.


Rainwater’s updates maintain a core collection of Southern-style comfort food: fried chicken, shrimp and grits, jambalaya, po’ boy sandwiches and the like, each simplified and honed by the chef. He previously worked for the family, holding various kitchen positions at all three of their restaurants since moving to Spokane about five years ago. When the pandemic arrived, however, he moved back home to Arizona to support his dad. “I think it was May last year, I called Deb just out of the blue and was like, ‘Hey, we’re going to come back to Washington, and I need work. I know we’re in a pandemic, but is there anything you can give me?’” Rainwater recalls. Green immediately said yes, and he found himself back in a familiar kitchen at Durkin’s for the rest of the year as the downtown spot moved from takeout to limited seating capacity and back to takeout again.

borhood,” she continues. “It made it more of a destination spot than, ‘Let’s hop over to Casper Fry for a burger and a beer.’” The one-page menu starts with several shared plates: a pickle board ($10), chicken wings ($13), a biscuit trio — made at Madeleine’s and topped with house ham, jam and creole-style mustard — and rotating gumbo ($6/$9), plus mac and cheese ($8) with the option to upgrade to pimento cheese ($9.50). “The way I like to cook is with good ingredients, and very simply,” Rainwater says. “I think a lot of times in the past, some dishes went over the top where there was a lot going on, whereas I like to make food taste good with what is seasonal and simple.” Among three salad choices currently is a classic: red beans and rice ($12) with fresh and roasted veggies and buttermilk blue cheese, topped with tahini dressing. Among Casper Fry’s spring entree choices are a cold-smoked pork chop ($22), fried chicken ($18), shrimp and grits ($19) and jambalaya ($18). Dessert is beignets with caramel sauce or the cobbler/crisp of the day ($7 each). “Like Taylor said, the food isn’t complicated — it’s not 35 ingredients to put one good dish on the plate — and a lot of these ingredients are utilized to their full potential,” Green says. In the bar, co-owner Ben Poffenroth has crafted a new collection Casper Fry’s pork chop YOUNG KWAK PHOTO of seasonal cocktails. When it came time to start working toward Popular so far is the Strawberry Nights ($10), Casper Fry’s return, Green says she knew Raina concoction of vodka, aperitivo, lemon juice, water would be the one to lead its kitchen. strawberry honey, egg white and soda. All craft “Honestly he was the only choice,” she says. beers are $6/pint, or crack a domestic tall boy on “We watched him grow up in this industry. He the patio for $3. is what we needed here, a chef that understood Rainwater is also creating rotating, seasonal the branding and the concept and what the menu specials alongside a few cocktail specials from the should be.” bar. One of his April highlights is a Josper ovenseared salmon ($22) with andouille sausage, fava ince its debut in 2012, Casper Fry’s apbeans, a pepper hash, remoulade and poblano proach to traditional Southern comfort food preserves. has taken many forms. But in a still-toCasper Fry’s first weekend brunch pop-up of come post-pandemic world, Green says another the year is Sunday, April 25, and again for Mothbig shift was due. Takeout continues to be a er’s Day, May 9. Both are reservation-only with big driver of sales for many of her restaurants’ seatings from 9 am to 2 pm. Otherwise, Casper customers and not everything on Casper Fry’s Fry is open Tuesday through Thursday from 4-8 former menu traveled well. pm, and Friday and Saturday from 4-9 pm. One expanded category is handhelds. Among Even after almost leaving behind one of the options are two po’ boys, shrimp and mushtheir restaurants, Green, her family and team room ($15 each); a fried chicken sandwich ($15); are deeply grateful for the community’s support and two burgers ($15/$17.50). throughout the past year’s many trials. She now Green describes the new menu as more sees a light at the end, with vaccinations widely “guest friendly” and “neighborhood friendly.” available and summer on the way. Still, enforc“We set out to make it less complicated and ing mask policies, operating at 50 percent and a little more approachable and to lower the price continuing high-volume takeout orders remain point some,” she says. day-to-day challenges. “I think one thing that happened here is that “We’re working harder now than we ever have,” Green says. “It’s harder to do this than every chef kind of put their own signature on your busiest Friday, Saturday night of the year. It’s the restaurant, and so over the years the menu harder to be at half and manage it, and manage morphed from the simple and less complicated the guests and maximize what you’re doing.” n Southern food that we started out with, and then cheys@inlander.com it just honestly got a little too chichi for the neigh-

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APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 27


FOOD | TO-GO BOX

Another Switch Up

Tony Brown is turning his Eyvind spot into the new home of Stella’s Cafe.

YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

Stella’s Cafe is taking over the Eyvind kitchen; plus recent openings and reopenings

businesses and Zag families that carried us through nine years to serve you. What began as an idea to share some love of food became an extraordinary experience for many wonderful people of Spokane and travelers alike,” the couple shared. The announcement also mentions that Clover is for sale.

BY CHEY SCOTT

OPENINGS AND REOPENINGS

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pokane chef and restaurateur Tony Brown is switching things up again. Starting this week he’s moving Stella’s Cafe, his casual sandwich and burger spot inside the Saranac Commons, to the kitchen at Eyvind, which he’s discontinuing. The fine dining spot debuted in late 2019, mere months before the coronavirus pandemic’s onset. “When we opened Stella’s 10 years ago, we were so limited by the kitchen, but now we have a full kitchen, so I can do what I wanted to do 10 years ago,” Brown says. In place of Stella’s at the Commons, Brown is leaving the McRuins name and format. The fast-food inspired menu originally debuted at Ruins as a weekly special, offering burgers and other creative takes on popular chains’ signature items. “McRuins was probably the busiest night of the week at Ruins, so during COVID we moved that menu to the Saranac because we thought it would be fun, and it really took off,” he says. “But it was still kind of confusing because we had the banh mi from the old Stella’s, and it was a hodgepodge of stuff. So I just decided to make it basically fast food and offer burgers, chicken sandwiches, crunch wraps and some different fries.” Ruins will continue operating as usual, serving up monthly, rotating menus inspired by various world cuisine. Hunt, the basement bar connected to Eyvindturned-Stella’s, also isn’t changing. Brown cites what he expects to be a slow return to full-capacity fine dining, both due to statewide health restrictions and diners’ changing preferences, as one of the reasons to discontinue Eyvind.

28 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

“I’m not the greatest at forecasting trends, but I think fine dining is still a year out at least,” he says. “Making money on fine dining is obviously doable, but right now especially with the cap on dining, it’s really hard. For me, also, I’m just getting old, so I just went back to an old menu rather than going forward with a new menu.” He says that weekend-only or pop-up dinner service are a likely possibility at Stella’s new home, and that the space is retaining a full liquor license. Back at Ruins, Brown says the dining room will continue to serve as a pop-up vintage boutique and video rental counter this summer since it’s too small to reasonably seat diners until full indoor capacity returns. Ruins’ menu is available to go, and for service on its small back patio, which is being expanded. Brown plans to have themed movie nights on the patio through summer. For the latest news and updates, follow all of Brown’s restaurants on social media: facebook.com/ruins.spokane and on Instagram @_stellascafe, @_ruins and @huntspokane.

CLOVER RESTAURANT CLOSES

Owners of Clover restaurant in the Logan neighborhood took to social media over the weekend to announce that it won’t be reopening after shutting down last year due to the pandemic. Owners Scott and Liz McCandless cited their desire to retire and spend more time with family as the main reason for closing the restaurant, which had operated in a historic craftsman house since 2012. “We want to thank all our wonderful guests, supporters, cheerleaders, team members, news editors,

Chef Chad White’s coastal Mexican-inspired ceviche spot Zona Blanca reopened this week in its newly remodeled home inside the historic Holley Mason building downtown, at 157 S. Howard. The expanded menu includes ceviche, tacos, tamales, fresh oysters, tostadas and a full bar. Current hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 4 to 10 pm, with lunch service to come.

People’s Waffle is now open for in-house dining.

YOUNG KWAK PHOTO

Newcomer People’s Waffle, which began last summer as a food truck, also recently opened for dine-in and takeout service at its new permanent home in the former Observatory bar spot at 15 S. Howard. The cafe offers both sweet and savory topped waffles — banh mi sandwich in waffle form, anyone? — including gluten-free options, and is currently open Wednesday through Sunday from 8 am to 2 pm. Downtown live music venue and lounge Lucky You is planning to reopen for food and drinks soon, too, aiming for a return on April 27. Find updates on forthcoming menu specials and more — least of all its return to hosting live music — by following along on social media. n


FROM LEFT: Daniel Kaluuya, Youn Yuh-jung, Anthony Hopkins and Carey Mulligan

AWARDS

AND THE

OSCAR

GOES TO... We’re picking who will — and who should — win at this weekend’s Academy Awards BY NATHAN WEINBENDER

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sk any Oscar prognosticator, and they’ll tell you that surprises at the Academy Awards aren’t the norm. Because of all the bellwether awards ceremonies that happen pre-Oscar — the Golden Globes, the Screen Actors Guild Awards, the Critics Choice Awards, the BAFTAs — the frontrunners are usually foregone conclusions heading into the Big Night. In keeping with a year that has thrown one curveball after another, the 2021 Oscars aren’t so cut and dry, particularly in the acting categories. So it’s going to be more difficult to predict the big winners this year, but we’ll do our best. We’re running down some of the top categories, not only guessing who will be victorious but choosing who’s most deserving.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR Sacha Baron Cohen, The Trial of the Chicago 7 Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah Leslie Odom Jr., One Night in Miami Paul Raci, Sound of Metal Lakeith Stanfield, Judas and the Black Messiah

WHO SHOULD WIN: Uniformly great performances here (I love that Raci, the least known of the group, was recognized), but if I had a ballot, my vote would go to Daniel Kaluuya. He’s one of the most charismatic and versatile young actors we have — he should have been nominated in 2019 for his chilling work in Widows — and while he gets all the thunderous speeches as the so-called Black Messiah, his take on Fred Hampton is textured and complex. Whether it should even be considered a “supporting” role (he’s more of a co-lead with fellow nominee Stanfield) is another debate entirely. WHO WILL WIN: Kaluuya will probably take the Oscar, too, considering he’s been a favorite throughout awards season.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS Maria Bakalova, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm Glenn Close, Hillbilly Elegy Olivia Colman, The Father Amanda Seyfried, Mank Youn Yuh-jung, Minari

WHO SHOULD WIN: Of all the scene-stealing performances this year, was there one that was as surprising and enchanting as Youn Yuh-jung’s eccentric, foulmouthed grandmother in Minari? She enters a half hour into the movie and instantly announces herself as one of the most engaging characters in recent memory, and it’s a performance that will hopefully bring more attention to an actor who has been a mainstay in the Korean film industry since the early 1970s. WHO WILL WIN: At the beginning of awards season, Maria Bakalova, disappearing into the role of Borat’s daughter, seemed to be the front-runner in this category. She still has a shot, but Youn has since won the SAG award and the BAFTA, meaning she likely has the upper hand. It’ll be deserved.

BEST ACTOR

Riz Ahmed, Sound of Metal Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom Anthony Hopkins, The Father Gary Oldman, Mank Steven Yeun, Minari WHO SHOULD WIN: Of these performances, the only one that didn’t grab me was Oldman’s; I wish Delroy Lindo’s commanding turn in Da 5 Bloods had taken his slot. But of the remaining nominees, I’m torn between Ahmed and Hopkins, both playing men grappling with a loss of cognition — Ahmed as a drummer go-

ing deaf, Hopkins as an aging intellectual succumbing to dementia. I’m leaning toward Anthony Hopkins in The Father, though, because he’s completely transformative and unbelievably moving. He’s been great in so many movies, but this is arguably his best performance since his Oscar-nominated turn in 1993’s The Remains of the Day. WHO WILL WIN: Chadwick Boseman is the surest bet of the night, and he’ll become only the third actor (after Peter Finch in Network and Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight) to receive a posthumous Oscar. It’s a shame that we don’t have dozens of new Boseman performances ahead of us.

BEST ACTRESS

Andra Day, The United States vs. Billie Holiday Viola Davis, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom Vanessa Kirby, Pieces of a Woman Frances McDormand, Nomadland Carey Mulligan, Promising Young Woman WHO SHOULD WIN: All of these performances are stellar, but my vote would go to Carey Mulligan, not because her role in Promising Young Woman had the highest degree of technical difficulty, but because she’s required to lead us into shocking, unexpected situations and is convincing all the way. I’ve been a fan of Mulligan since her Oscar-nominated breakthrough in 2009’s An Education, and more than a decade later, she’s the emotional anchor of another film about predatory men and the definition of consent. It’s a controversial movie, and I have some issues with its plotting, but Mulligan never takes a wrong step. WHO WILL WIN: Looking at the normal preOscars predictors offers no help here. All of the major acting awards have gone to different performances: Day ...continued on next page

APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 29


FILM | SHORTS

FILM | AWARDS

OPENING FILMS

“AND THE OSCAR GOES TO...,” CONTINUED...

DEMON SLAYER THE MOVIE: MUGEN TRAIN

A feature-length follow-up to the popular anime series, which has already broken box-office records in its native Japan. (NW) Rated R

MORTAL KOMBAT

The popular video game returns to the big screen, in properly gory

fashion this time, with all your favorite characters delivering one fatality after another. Also streaming on HBO Max. (NW) Rated R

TOGETHER TOGETHER

A single man with baby fever develops an unusual friendship with the young woman who agrees to be his surrogate mother. Ed Helms

and Patti Harrison star. (NW) Rated R

WOLFWALKERS

This Oscar-nominated animated feature is a family-friendly Irish folktale about two girls — one a hunter, the other a lycanthropic forest dweller. At the Magic Lantern. (NW) Rated PG

NOW PLAYING CHAOS WALKING

Based on a series of YA sci-fi novels, two teenage misfits (Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley) find each other on a telepathic, mostly male planet on the brink of civil war. (NW) Rated PG-13

THE GIRL WHO BELIEVES IN MIRACLES

A drama for Christian audiences about a little girl who prays for and is rewarded with a healing touch, making her the subject of media scrutiny. At Hayden Cinemas. (NW) Rated PG

GODZILLA VS. KONG

Like Batman and Superman before them, cinema’s most famous giant ape and radioactive lizard duke it out while the world watches. Also streaming on HBO Max. (NW) Rated PG-13

IN THE EARTH

Amid a pandemic, two biologists trek into the woods hoping to find an organic cure. Instead they uncover an axe-wielding hermit and a violent spiritual entity. (NW) Rated R

JUDAS & THE BLACK MESSIAH

The true story of Black Panther visionary Fred Hampton (Daniel

won the Golden Globe, Mulligan won the Critics Choice Award, Davis won the Screen Actors Guild Award, and McDormand won the BAFTA. So what’s a guesser to do? Because the Academy has such a huge overlap with the Screen Actors Guild, I’ll tentatively predict Davis as the victor here. But this is truly anyone’s ballgame. Hell, Vanessa Kirby could easily surprise everyone and walk away with the statuette.

BEST PICTURE

Kaluuya) and the FBI informant (Lakeith Stanfield) who infiltrated the organization in the late 1960s. (NW) Rated R

infiltrate a Nazi-affiliated private school at the height of World War II. Eddie Izzard and Judi Dench star. (NW) Rated PG-13

MINARI

TOM & JERRY

Writer-director Lee Isaac Chung borrows from his own life in this delicate story of Korean immigrants who settle onto a rural Arkansas farm in the early ’80s. (NW) Rated PG-13

NOBODY

A new riff on the Death Wish formula, starring Bob Odenkirk as a meek suburban father who goes into full-on revenge mode after his family is attacked. (NW) Rated R

RAYA & THE LAST DRAGON

The latest Disney animated feature, a multicultural fable that follows a teenage warrior’s hunt for the titular creature. Also streaming on Disney+. (NW) Rated PG

SAS: RED NOTICE

A group of terrorists hijack a train as it’s deep inside the Chunnel, holding everyone hostage. Little do they know there’s a special ops officer on board, and he’s probably seen Die Hard. (NW) Rated R

SIX MINUTES TO MIDNIGHT

A British spy poses as a teacher to

The beloved cartoon cat and mouse get their first mostly liveaction feature, with the likes of Chloe Grace Moretz and Michael Pena as their human friends. Also streaming on HBO Max. (NW) Rated PG

THE UNHOLY

Another entry in the Sunday school horror genre, this one about deaf girl who is imbued with healing powers by the Virgin Mary. Other, more sinister events follow. (NW) Rated PG-13

VOYAGERS

In this chilly sci-fi thriller, a crew of young people are sent into space looking for a habitable planet. If you’ve seen Solaris or 2001, you know what’s going to happen next. (NW) Rated PG-13

WONDER WOMAN 1984

This divisive sequel to the 2017 blockbuster brings Diana Prince into the era of Reaganomics and Day-Glo, where an ancient, wishfulfilling artifact threatens humanity. (NW) Rated PG-13 n

Film listings reflect showtimes at AMC River Park Square 20 (808 W. Main), the Magic Lantern Theatre (25 W. Main), Village Centre Cinemas in Wandermere (12622 N. Division) and Hayden Cinema (300 Senta Dr). All Regal Cinema chains and the Garland Theater remain temporarily closed.

The Father Judas and the Black Messiah Mank Minari Nomadland Promising Young Woman Sound of Metal The Trial of the Chicago 7 WHAT SHOULD WIN: I really like most of these movies (I don’t think Mank or Trial of the Chicago 7 belong here), so in narrowing the list down to my personal favorites, I asked myself, Which of these would I most like to see again right now? Based on that rubric, I have to go with Darius Marder’s Sound of Metal, just barely edging out The Father and Nomadland. This is the sort of scrappy independent film that would, in a normal year, likely be overlooked by the Academy, and I’m so glad it got recognition. Yes, it concerns serious, heavy subject matter, but it exudes so much more warmth, humor and sweetness than movies about disabilities are typically afforded. It’s not all dour and downbeat. WHAT WILL WIN: Nomadland seems to be the favorite here, with Chloe Zhao likely becoming the second woman to win best director. It’s about time. n The 2021 Academy Awards air Sun, April 25, at 5 pm on ABC.

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REOPENING AT 50% CAPACITY! NOW PLAYING: THE FATHER; WOLFWALKERS; NOMADLAND; MINARI RENTALS STARTING AT $99! Check website magiclanternonmain.com for all showings and rental inquiries. WE MISSED YOU! 25 W Main Ave #125 • MagicLanternOnMain.com

30 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

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ALBUMS

KICK OUT THE JAMS With the return of big concerts on the horizon, we run down some of our favorite live albums BY DAN NAILEN AND NATHAN WEINBENDER

O

f the many pleasures ripped away from us in 2020, one of the most glaring was the inability to experience live music. It’s almost difficult to remember what it’s like to be shoulder to shoulder with a roiling crowd, belting along to a classic anthem. Over the past year, we’ve been revisiting our most beloved concert albums in an attempt to recapture those feelings, and we’re running down some of those LPs here. We’re trying to avoid the most obvious titles: No one needs to be reminded how great the performances are on Stop Making Sense or Johnny Cash’s At Folsom Prison or Nirvana’s Unplugged. Rather, we’re picking personal favorites that we replay again and again when we need a reminder of why we love a good show.

NEIL DIAMOND, HOT AUGUST NIGHT

When I was a little kid, my parents would disappear about once a year to a Neil Diamond concert, and my sisters and I would laugh and laugh at how uncool they were. Guess who’s laughing now? Naturally, the parents’ taste for overwrought, cheesy pop perfection sunk in, and I became an unabashed Neil fan around the time in college I stole a giant VHS box of this legendary live album/concert film and stuck it as the “star” on the top of my Christmas tree. Diamond has released several live albums, but this is the one worth visiting on repeat. It’s packed with the big hits (“Solitary Man,” “Sweet Caroline,” “Girl, You’ll Be a Woman Soon”), it sounds great, and the album cover is hilarious. Just look at it! When it comes to live-album comfort food, it’s hard to get much more sugary sweet than ol’ Neil. (DAN NAILEN) ...continued on next page

Neil Diamond’s Hot August Night




   

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MUSIC | ALBUMS “KICK OUT THE JAMS,” CONTINUED...

ANI DIFRANCO LIVING IN CLIP

Despite her big-and-growing following, I’d never really heard much Ani DiFranco until a friend dragged me to a show at the University of Montana in 1996. I was immediately gobsmacked by her energy, guitar playing and hilarious between-song banter. This live double-album arrived a year later, and I jumped on it. It serves as a fine reminder of the best songs from her first seven albums, and manages to capture the loose, fun vibe of her shows at the time, playing with a tight trio lineup. More importantly, songs like “Shameless,” “Gravel” and “Untouchable Face” just slay. Rolling Stone called Living in Clip one of the essential recordings of the ’90s, and they ain’t wrong. (DN)

FIREHOSE LIVE TOTEM POLE EP

When D. Boon died in 1985, his bandmates in the Minutemen could have quit playing music, so devastating was the loss of their childhood buddy. But when a fan from Ohio named Ed Crawford showed up in Southern Cali and convinced bassist Mike Watt and drummer George Hurley to continue, fIREHOSE was born. While the Minutemen made super-short punk songs rooted in jazz and lefty politics, fIREHOSE was more sonically sprawling, and became my favorite band as soon as I heard them. This live EP is a blast I return to often, a showcase of raw energy and the trio’s great taste in cover songs (five of the seven tunes here). It starts with a furious take on Blue Oyster Cult’s “The Red & the Black,” includes killer versions of old bands (Wire, Butthole Surfers), then-new crews (Superchunk) and a totally unexpected dive into rap thanks to Public Enemy’s “Sophisticated Bitch.” (DN)

THELONIOUS MONK QUARTET & JOHN COLTRANE AT CARNEGIE HALL

In the summer of 1957, two jazz greats — pianist and bandleader Thelonious Monk and saxophonist nonpareil John Coltrane — began playing together at defunct New York club the Five Spot, a residency that lasted through the end of the year. Of all their live gigs, only two made it to tape: One is a fan bootleg taken surreptitiously at the Five Spot, and the other is a professional recording of a one-night stint at Carnegie Hall. That latter performance happened on Thanksgiving weekend 1957 during a benefit concert for Harlem’s Morningside Community Center, with a lineup boasting Billie Holiday, Ray Charles, Chet Baker and more. The recordings of Monk and Coltrane’s set were locked away in a vault at the Library of Congress until Blue Note Records released them on CD in 2005, and listening to it now still feels like eavesdropping on two jazz greats at the peak of their form. (NATHAN WEINBENDER)

VARIOUS ARTISTS DAVE CHAPPELLE’S BLOCK PARTY 

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Itching for a summertime music festival? Check out the 2006 live album Dave Chappelle’s Block Party, which documents the comedian’s takeover of his Brooklyn neighborhood with a daylong concert featuring a bunch of musical heavy hitters. The lineup included then-rising stars like John Legend and Kanye West, alongside a bevy of R&B and hip-hop legends like Black Star, Common, Jill Scott and the Roots. But I’m burying the lede here, because the major get of the night was hip-hop trio the Fugees, who reunited for a one-off gig and stole the show. There’s one big drawback to the album: The Fugees’ set, as well as Chappelle’s stand-up interstitials, are nowhere to be found. Luckily, there’s an accompanying film, directed by Michel Gondry, that contains all of it. (NW)

THE VELVET UNDERGROUND LIVE AT MAX’S KANSAS CITY

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The long-shuttered New York hangout Max’s Kansas City was a haven for just about every outsider artist of the ’60s and ’70s, and among the cadre was the hugely influential art-rock band the Velvet Underground. They performed there so often they were practically mascots for the place, and Live at Max’s Kansas City captures frontman Lou Reed’s final gigs with the group, recorded before a tiny audience in the summer of 1970. The Velvets went famously unnoticed during their brief lifespan, and it’s crazy to hear a now-idolized band performing now-classic songs to scattered, mostly disinterested applause. The audio quality is, admittedly, not the best — you can even overhear the crowd’s idle chatter in between songs — but listening to it is like really being there, witnessing an important moment in rock ’n’ roll history with people who had no idea. (NW) n


WORDS TOUGH ACT TO FOLLOW

Author, producer, activist and speaker Angie Thomas (above) is virtually visiting Spokane Community College as a part of this spring’s Hagan Center Diversity Series. Thomas’s work includes the New York Times bestselling young adult novels The Hate U Give and On the Come Up, as well as the guided journal Find Your Voice and the novel Concrete Rose, a prequel to The Hate U Give. Her next YA novel Blackout is set to publish June 22. Blackout is an interlinked story of six couples shining a spotlight on Black teen love written by Thomas and five other writers: Dhonielle Clayton, Tiffany D. Jackson, Nic Stone, Ashley Woodfolk and Nicola Yoon. Thomas has also produced film adaptations of both The Hate U Give and On the Come Up. Her talk is being livestreamed on the Spokane Community College Facebook page and then will be available on YouTube that afternoon. — SPENCER BROWN SCC Hagan Center Diversity Series: Angie Thomas • Tue, April 27 at 5:30 pm • Free • Online; details at scc.spokane.edu/live

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MUSIC CHOPIN 2.0

Nancy Drew Virtual Escape Room • Sat, April 24 at 1 and 4 pm • Lecture: The Mystery of Nancy Drew • Wed, April 28 from 6:307:30 pm • Both free and online • scld.org

Northwest Bachfest: Chopin Re-Imagined and All Jazzed Up • Fri, April 23 • $20 • nwbachfest.com

Young readers across generations can relate to feelings of genuine excitement and suspense while page-turning through the timeless Nancy Drew series. In celebration of the sleuthing books’ 91st birthday, Spokane County Library District is hosting a special lecture with historian Leslie Goddard delving into the storied history of its super “girl detective.” Readers who tune in can learn more about series author Carolyn Keene, and its creation as a female version of the popular Hardy Boys series. While Nancy was introduced way back in 1930, she’s evolved and been modernized over the decades to stay relevant while continuing to captivate and inspire young readers. In conjunction with Goddard’s talk, the library is also hosting a virtual Nancy Drew-themed escape room for tweens and teens on Saturday April 24. — CHEY SCOTT

Although it’s not happening in person this year, Northwest Bachfest continues to deliver great music with another virtual concert this weekend, with more classical greatness being beamed directly into your living room. Artistic director Zuill Bailey and his fellow programmers have adroitly filled the void of live concerts, and the group’s latest showcase will feature pianist Matt Herskowitz (pictured), who has made a name for himself with playful jazz arrangements of great composers. In this instance, the works of Polish master Frédéric Chopin are taking the spotlight, and this program will dissect and deconstruct a beloved collection of Chopin etudes that were published throughout the 1830s. The concert will be available to view through April 26, and sent to ticket buyers via a private link on the Bachfest YouTube channel. — NATHAN WEINBENDER

APRIL 22, 2021 INLANDER 33


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Aries Spears has the kind of resume most comedians can only dream of, and it’s been that way ever since he was a New York City teenager doing standup in the city’s clubs. That early start eventually landed him national TV gigs like Showtime at the Apollo and Russell Simmons’ Def Comedy Jam, and later a spot in the cast of Mad TV for eight seasons. It was there his star really began to rise, playing famous faces like Jesse Jackson and Bill Cosby, and writing popular sketches like “Talkin’ American.” He’s worked in feature films and done sitcoms on network television, but standup was never far from his mind, and he’s been a hard-touring comic between all his TV and film gigs right from the beginning. You can bet a year forced off the road by COVID will give the gifted comedian plenty of new material when he hits Spokane for a series of shows. — DAN NAILEN Aries Spears • Thu, April 22-Sun, April 25 at 7 pm; also Fri, April 23 and Sat, April 24 at 9:30 pm • $25-$35 • 18+ • Spokane Comedy Club • 315 W. Sprague • spokanecomedyclub.com • 509-318-9998

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BENEFIT CREATIVITY CALLING

Grab your cellphones and turn off silent mode: Creativity is calling! Local learning center Spark Central is hosting its annual Spark Salon fundraiser this weekend to ensure youth programs and memberships remain cost-free. While past versions of Spark Salon have taken place in person, this year’s fundraiser is in the form of a virtual “telethon,” featuring bestselling local author and Spark Central co-founder Jess Walter (pictured) alongside Spark Executive Director Brooke Matson and Terrain Executive Director Ginger Ewing. The virtual event also includes additional surprise guest speakers connected to the arts, music, food, film and more. Participants can get a glimpse into how Spark Central has been navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, its future plans for breaking creativity barriers and how it will continue guiding community members. Spark Salon: The Telethon is being livestreamed and will be available on various online platforms. — NATALIE RIETH Spark Salon: The Telethon • Fri, April 23 at 7 pm • Online; details at sparktelethon.org

34 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021


not trying to flirt with you. If you’re interested in grabbing a drink with the girl wearing the tie-dye mask, with traces of pink in her hair, send me an email at postfallsmeetcute@gmail.com. NEWLY SINGLE MOM I see you running your kids from place to place, racing to your job and racing home daily to take care of your children while your husband is hanging out with his girlfriend at the bar of the week. I see your tears, I feel your stress, and I wanted to tell you that you are not alone! You have so much support! Shame on your loser husband for what he has done to your family, your kids deserve better than him. Chin up!

I SAW YOU SAD GIRL IN A GONZAGA LAW SWEATER Gonzaga law sweater, tiny gold hoops, pastel-colored rainbow nails, low bun, white high-top Converse and sweat pants.... probably a Scorpio... I saw you at Steele Barrel on a Wednesday night. You were by yourself and looked sad. I asked if you were OK. We talked and you opened up. You let it all out, and I could tell you needed to. I felt like I’ve known you for years; I was captivated. And it wasn’t because you’re the most beautiful creature I’ve ever seen, no. Not your looks, but because of how down to earth you are. You are so genuine and silly and quirky and just seem like a pretty god damn great human being... anyways. I hope you feel better, and I hope we cross paths again. And, I hope you like girls.

SAW YOU AT NORTH WINCO To the gorgeous guy at the north Winco around 11:30-midnight on April 2nd; we made eye contact once walking past each other in the seasonal/random home goods aisle. You were wearing a black zip-up hoodie, light jeans and dark shoes. I was the short guy with glasses and a Resurrection Records hoodie dressed in all black. I thought your eyes were stunning, and I wish I hadn’t been too shy to make eye contact with you again when we walked past each other in the frozen foods section. Hopefully you see this and I could take you on a date sometime? northspokanewincoman@yahoo.com

SMIZING IN THE POST-VACCINATION OBSERVATION ROOM On Friday, April 16th at 10:05 am in Post Falls, we had just received our second dose. You sat across from me: hairy arms, wire rim glasses, rolled jeans, the heels of your slip-on shoes folded down. We made eye contact several times and smiled at each other with our eyes — most notably when you proudly affixed your new button to your T-shirt. I deeply regret

THANKS FOR THE COMPLIMENT! Cheers to the young woman walking into Northtown last week who complimented me on my look and my hair. You made my day!

CHEERS

JEERS GOING ROUND & ROUND AGAIN Jeers to WADOT: how much crack are

you folks smoking?! You narrowed down Monroe St both ways same with Mission; now you’re putting in three more roundabouts?!! Seriously? We already have six that I know of; we are Not Europe or Canada!!! You’re telling me that we can’t get solar panel traffic lights? Yes, they exist & there’s the solution to traffic issues. It also helps

advises us all to do. But, for the love of humanity — and your parents, your kids, and grandkids, and the future — GET VACCINATED and use your masks!!! COVID will only be conquered if we all go forth together and do this! (Special note to our Idaho neighbors: quit bringing your COVID over here; we’re pretty tired of dealing with higher numbers

closer than you think, and the message you’re sending by such articles does not help your cause. INGRATITUDE “Lost dog and gratitude” certainly. Hit the nail on the head. Ingratitude is sweeping America like another COVID-19 plague. With Evolution teaching our children that we

Ingratitude is sweeping America like another COVID-19 plague.

with energy concerns; the sun is always there giving the panels energy even when the sun is not shining. Why can’t you team up with IDOT and solve the State line issue of desperately needed traffic lights. How about giving the public real solutions from right here in the good ‘ol USA? RED STATE AND E.WA ANTI-VAXXERS Dear Right-Wing, Ultra-Conservative Supporters of a Deposed Leader: Yeah. So we all are quite aware of your idiotic political stance on every subject ranging from immigration to weapons laws to abortion, as well as your undying support of insurrection against the U.S. Capitol. You claim to be Pro-Life and you uphold your “family values,” yet you *refuse* to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and/or you continue to populate public businesses and to form large gatherings with your failure to wear any sort of PPE whatsoever! I mean, HOW SELFISH and STUPID are you? Really... Yes, we understand you merrily drank that delicious Orange Kool-Aid for four years, and that you will fight to the death for your “god-granted” freedoms, and that you will flat-out refuse anything the sitting government

because of your stupidity and ignorant Trumptardisms.) Thank you. Signed, A Native (and militantly liberal) Eastern Washingtonian. YOU WANT ANOTHER TRUMP? Jeers to the Inlander and last week’s column entitled “Abolish the Police.” I fully support the laudable goals you set out in the second to last paragraph of your article. But the “Abolish the Police” headline and the “Defund the Police photograph will ensure another Trump or Trump-like candidate in presidential and local elections. Those headlines play right into the fear of many White voters who support the authoritarian right crowd. When Black Lives Matter goes on record saying that looting is OK in the wake of White on Black killing, it sends White voters to the right. Haven’t you seen the right-wing candidates already lining up for 2024? Pompeo, DeSantis, Cruz, Graham, Ernst, Haley, Hawley, Lee, Sasser, Scott. They’ll tell voters that the left wants to abolish the police and pull out articles and photographs like the one in the Inlander. If the progressive wing of the left doesn’t work on its message, the voters will move to the right. The 2022 election is

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are animals, is it any wonder that they act like animals? When gratitude goes out the window, so does reason. Hence the push for semiautomatic weapons. Jac Archer thinks we should throw out the baby with the bathwater. You don’t chop down a tree just because of one rotten apple. I know some very fine policemen of all colors. The last thing we need is a vigilante patrol. n

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EARTH DAY

Hemp Day Compared with some alternatives, hemp soaks up carbon and merely sips water BY WILL MAUPIN

C

Hemp takes very little water to thrive.

36 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

annabis is often advertised as a panacea. Advocates clamor about its worth in the fight against countless health issues — some of which are backed by science, and some of which aren’t. It’s not just as medicine that cannabis is advertised as being a cure-all, though. Hemp, the version of cannabis that won’t get you high, is being touted as a potential wonder crop.


There’s some legitimate research behind the push to bring hemp into the forefront, though. It’s no perfect crop, but there’s starting to be good reason, and research, behind the argument that hemp might help save the planet. On Earth Day, perhaps there’s no better plant to look to than this. Here are two ways cannabis can help you limit your negative footprint on our environment.

HEMP CLOTHING

Fashion and sustainability don’t often go hand in hand. Polyester, made from fossil fuel, and cotton, a water-intensive crop, are two of the biggest textiles on the market, and neither is particularly good for the planet. Hemp is, however, and in ways that helps offset the biggest negatives of those other textiles. As it is made of petroleum, polyester production contributes to global greenhouse gas emissions. Hemp, on the other hand, can help pull those greenhouse gases, specifically carbon dioxide, out of the air. According to the European Industrial Hemp Association, one hectare of cropland dedicated to hemp can sequester up to 15 tons of carbon dioxide. As for water usage, hemp production requires roughly half as much water as cotton to produce an equivalent amount of material, accord-

NOTE TO READERS 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.

ing to a study by the Stockholm Environment Institute.

HEMP MILK

Concerns over nutrition and sustainability have helped alternative milks like almond and soy elbow their way into grocery stores and coffee shops around the country in recent years. Hemp milk has exploded since the federal government legalized the crop in 2018. Like all alternative milks, there are pros and cons when comparing it to traditional cow’s milk. One clear pro in hemp’s favor is, once again, water consumption. The Almond Board of California claims that the Golden State produces nearly 80 percent of the world’s almonds. But doing so requires 3.2 gallons of water to grow just a single almond, according to a 2019 study from the journal Ecological Indicators. Like cotton, almonds are a thirsty plant. Hemp requires far less water and can easily be grown without the need for irrigation. n

BE AWARE: Marijuana is legal for adults 21 and older under Washington State law (e.g., RCW 69.50, RCW 69.51A, HB0001 Initiative 502 and Senate Bill 5052). State law does not preempt federal law; possessing, using, distributing and selling marijuana remains illegal under federal law. In Washington state, consuming marijuana in public, driving while under the influence of marijuana and transporting marijuana across state lines are all illegal. Marijuana has intoxicating effects; there may be health risks associated with its consumption, and it may be habit-forming. It can also impair concentration, coordination and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug. Keep out of reach of children. For more information, consult the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board at www.liq.wa.gov.

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I’m dating an awesome woman I see a future with. However, there’s a hurdle: She doesn’t want to have sex until we’re committed, but I don’t feel right about committing without knowing we have sexual chemistry. A previous relationship ended because the sex was subpar, and I don’t want to go through that again. —Conflicted Sexual chemistry is pretty important. You don’t want to get all emotionally attached and then find that sexually, you go together like peanut butter and a repeating saw. Men and women are alike in countless ways. (Both have two legs; men don’t randomly have six like an insect.) However, we differ psychologically per the physical differences we do have; namely, how sex can leave a woman “with child” and a man “with a teaspoon less sperm.” These differences drive men’s and women’s conflicting “sexual strategies,” explains evolutionary psychologist David Buss. For men, a casual sex-centric “shortterm sexual strategy” — hit and run...sex and shun — has the most “reproductive benefits,” increasing men’s chances of passing on their genes. Women benefit most from a commitment-centric “long-term sexual strategy” and look for signs a man is emotionally attached, making him more likely to stick around and provide for any, um, sex biscuits they might create. Where there are deep-seated desires, there’s often deception. Buss calls this “strategic interference,” describing sneaky tactics used to get the opposite sex to go against their evolutionary best interest. Men, for example, feign commitment to get sex, while women feign sexual interest to get commitment — either long-term or enough to enjoy an evening of free fine dining. However, we have a defense against this: “negative” emotions — like a woman’s fear of getting humptied and dumptied and a man’s fear that all a woman really wants to “ride like a pony” is his American Express black card. As for what you should do, Buss’ research might be helpful. Buss finds that men will shift to a “long-term sexual strategy” when that’s what it takes to land a woman of especially high “mate value.” If she doesn’t seem worth the risk of waiting for, it’s probably breakup o’clock. No, sex isn’t everything in a relationship. However, if you like to have sex twice a day and your partner’s up for twice every never, it’s a little hard to meet in the middle — though the less libidinous partner might come up with some, uh, helpful ideas, such as: “Do we really have to have sex when I’m conscious?”

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STARTTALKINGNOW.ORG 38 INLANDER APRIL 22, 2021

I’m dating a new guy. When we’re alone, he’s sweet and a complete gentleman. However, whenever we’re around his guy friends, he comments about how attractive he finds other women, rants about sports, and farts in front of me. I’ve hinted that this makes me unhappy, but nothing changes. —Upset Love can be transformative — turning men into emotional marshmallows — which can lead a 20-something lovestruck dudebro to want to make it known to his posse: “I will not be waking up on Tuesday all Harry Styles in a dress on the cover of Vogue.” Your boyfriend’s loutish behavior — talking about other girls and farting in front of you — sounds like a “costly signal,” a form of advertising used by both animals and humans. A costly signal is a trait or behavior that’s so wasteful, extravagant, and threatening to one’s evolutionary interests (mating and survival) that it’s likely to be a truthful indicator of an organism’s financial, social, or physical mojo. The peacock’s tail is an example. As evolutionary psychologist Steve StewartWilliams points out, it’s like “a giant billboard”: a huge electric blue and green yoohoo! to peacock-eating predators. This big bunch of buttfeathers also seriously slows the peacock’s escape. However, the larger and more lush a Mr. Peacock’s tail, the more the peahens (the lady peacocks) go for him. (The fact that he avoids becoming lunch while lugging around this massive feathery impediment suggests he must be a particularly buff and genetically superior example of peacockhood.) Chances are your boyfriend is rude-vertising to the guys: Sure, he has love in his life, but he hasn’t gone all bought, sold, and girlfriend-controlled. The costly signal in this? He’s so secure in his sexual magnetism (like, the hot chicks are lined up and begging) that he can afford to act like a turd to his girlfriend. Um, no. Or at least, that’s what you need to put out there. In words, not hints. Tell him it’s humiliating when he comments on other women when you’re right there, plus the farting thing is a sexual turnoff. In short, he’s transforming you into an unhappy girlfriend who won’t want to have sex. Assuming he cares about you, you should see an abrupt end to the show he’s been putting on for his dudebros: “No, I Haven’t Become A Love Muppet Colonized By The Enemy.” n ©2021, Amy Alkon, all rights reserved. • Got a problem? Write Amy Alkon, 171 Pier Ave, #280, Santa Monica, CA 90405 or email AdviceAmy@aol.com (www.advicegoddess.com)


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