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inally, come what may — a “blue shift,” a “red mirage,” the biggest turnout ever, in the most important election of our lifetimes — it’s time for you to VOTE. Inside this week’s cover section, you’ll find details on casting your ballot by mail and what to expect for election night and the many uncertain days that could follow. We also talk with experts on militant groups in America who are issuing warnings about extremism while also trying not to inadvertently suppress voting by sensationalizing the danger. Finally, staff reporter Daniel Walters analyzes the different attention-grabbing strategies of the two men vying for high office: one who craves the spotlight and the other who promises he’ll be boring enough to ignore. Find those stories and a lot more on page 12. Also this week: Staff reporter Wilson Criscione details how the Spokane Police Department continues to ticket homeless people — even when the city’s own records show there’s no place for them to go (page 8). — JACOB H. FRIES, Editor
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We who live and work here value West Central especially for the diversity of its people. We refuse to let anyone take away from our commitment to create a safe community where all are welcome.
You may join the West Central Inclusion and Anti-Racism Response Group In our fight against hate by doing one or more of the following: - Talk to young people about racism and bias and why it - Create opportunities for diverse affordable housing hurts all of us options by asking your elected officials to fund affordable housing - Reach out to your elected officials to support the SCAR - Contact the Spokane Human Rights Commission to Platform for Change (www.scarspokane.org/platform-for-change) learn about human rights and anti-discrimination protections in Spokane: - Ask your childrenâ€™s school district about adding my.spokanecity.org/bcc/commissions/spokane-humaninclusive and racially accurate history curricula rights-commission/ - Consider joining and becoming active in the Spokane NAACP or SCAR (Spokane Community Against Racism)
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Normally, we ask our question of the week of people we randomly encounter on the street. But with the coronavirus pandemic, we instead asked our followers on social media to share their thoughts.
PATRICK DOCKREY: Worrying about partisan filling of the SCOTUS is a ship that sailed five years ago. Republicans have destroyed any nonpartisanship in the appointment process. That leaves adding judges, or tossing out a couple and replacing them. DALE DAMRON: I hate the tit-for-tat warfare over court appointments. Let’s resolve the first issue, that of congressional precedent of allowing court vacancies to stack up whenever the Senate majority leader senses it is to his or her party’s advantage. DON LAMP: Assuming Democrats win the Senate, they must use their majority to “pack“ the court. First, the Senate must do away with the filibuster, because Democrats’ Senate majority will probably be very thin, perhaps 51 to 50 with Kamala Harris being the deciding vote. After years of Mitch McConnell’s refusing to hold hearings on Obama’s court nominations and then hypocritically pushing through Amy Coney Barrett while America is already voting on Trump’s replacement, Republicans have no standing to argue that altering the court’s makeup and abolishing the filibuster violates the sacred traditions of the “world’s greatest deliberative body.”
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PETER KNIGHT REMINGTON: More seats perhaps but I’m much more interested in seeing an end to lifetime appointments. JOHN KARI SLACK: Nope! This question would never be asked for a Republican candidate. KEITH HAMLIN: No, deal with the cards you have. BROCK JOHNSON: Yes, he should. It needs to be increased and maintained. Trusting Trump to do anything is a huge mistake and a recipe for disappointment. n
Now on Inlander.com: National and international stories from the New York Times to go with the fresh, local news we deliver every day OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 5
COMMENT | POLITICS
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The Middle Road If we ever want to fix anything, we’ll first need to find some common ground BY MICHAEL ALLEN
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consider myself the middle ground. I have been called “middle-of-the-road Mike” by colleagues on opposite ends of the political spectrum. Although I lean center-right and have been on the Spokane Republican Central Committee, I think solutions can be found on both sides of the aisle. U.S. politics have never been for the lighthearted — our freedom of speech assures that. It is a great gift that comes with its own set of challenges as our historically analog communication systems become digital, and speech can travel from a thought to the world in seconds, regardless of how true it is. Because of digital speed and access, our politics have moved to the extremes of each side of the spectrum. Each party views political outcomes as a zero-sum game. Someone must win and someone must lose, not what is best for most Americans. POLITICAL TRIBALISM: If you are not 100 percent onboard with the tribe’s thoughts, you must be canceled. No middle ground, even when collaboration makes sense. ANOTHER STIMULUS: As the last stimulus runs out, you can say it has done its job. Avoided
6 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
a massive economic collapse by getting money into the hands of individuals and businesses. It was a little too rich in some areas and may have slowed the recovery, but we need another right-sized one as we continue to work our way out of this pandemic. Those who point the finger at Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi need to know that the House passed its version back in May and Sen. Mitch McConnell has sat on it in the Senate all summer. Those who point the finger at Republicans need to understand that President Trump has agreed to much of what the House wants, but not everything. FEDERAL DEFICIT: While we need stimulus now, we have long-term fiscal issues. For the past 40 years, we have fallen into this trap of adding more benefits and lowering our taxes. That is the recipe that basically bankrupted Greece, Spain and others. We are on that same path as each U.S. taxpayer’s portion of our current debt is now $216,000. We need a real conversation about increasing taxes and decreasing expenses,
Your Life forLess!
Those who point the finger at Speaker Nancy Pelosi need to know that the House passed a stimulus bill in May, and Sen. Mitch McConnell has sat on it all summer. so our children do not inherit a country in financial ruins. POLICE REFORM: Defunding is not a solution. I have nothing but respect for our police and the service they provide our communities, but training reform is a must. So is accountability to the citizens. This on its surface would seem to be an easy lift, but from experience, it is anything but. AFFORDABLE CARE ACT: I think we can all agree that our U.S. health care system is financially broken. Not many industries can operate with the client having no idea what the service will cost. I think many of us would consider a universal health care system that is not tied to an employer, but not until some of the systemic billing and cost issues are resolved. Raising taxes to plow into a system with no cost controls will end in failure. FEDERAL TERM LIMITS: Our Founding Fathers did not envision professional politicians. Congress has not passed an actual budget since 1996. They are more worried about getting elected and this mentality puts the common good of the citizens second. I propose 12 years: two Senate terms or six House terms or a combination thereof. Twelve years in D.C. is enough. GUN CONTROL: I like my guns and support the right to keep and bear arms. But some commonsense gun controls such as enhanced background checks seem logical and needed. In this day and age, you can’t be a pro-choice Republican or a pro-gun Democrat and get elected. Until the moderates in each party start getting behind candidates who want to find solutions rather than pass litmus tests, we are going to be stuck living in our isolated tribes battling each other with very little to show for it. How far apart we are can be summarized in a mask. n Michael Allen, a business and entrepreneurship professor at Spokane Community College, is a former associate athletic director at Eastern Washington University. A longtime Republican, he previously served six years on the Spokane City Council.
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JoAnna Epperson, who has been homeless off and on for 20 years, pictured at camp earlier this week. YOUNG KWAK PHOTO
ROOM TO OPERATE
Despite a lack of shelter space, records show Spokane Police still enforce laws targeting homeless people BY WILSON CRISCIONE
ne morning last November, JoAnna Epperson, 38, saw a group of Spokane Police and city workers approach her camp, which was set up in an area between downtown and Browne’s Addition. She knew what was coming: For the third time this year, they would ask her to pick up her stuff and go somewhere else. They’d issue her a criminal citation for unlawful camping, a misdemeanor. She would then go to Spokane’s Community Court, which aims to connect people with services and lift them out of homelessness. But Epperson, who says she’s been homeless and battling drug addiction for 20 years, felt stuck. The city was
8 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
working with nonprofit Jewels Helping Hands to open a warming center, but it wasn’t open yet that day on Nov. 11. And there was no other shelter with a bed where she could feel safe, she says. “Where are we supposed to go?” Epperson remembers asking. “We were waiting for Jewels to open the warming center. We had no place else to go.” That question was at the heart of the Martin v. City of Boise case, the case that led the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to rule in 2018 that when there is no shelter space available, it amounts to cruel and unusual punishment for cities to enforce bans on camping in public
spaces. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear the case in December 2019, letting that ruling stand. And Spokane has not ignored it: The city’s own law against sitting or lying on public sidewalks, known as sit-lie, makes it explicit that there is an exception for people who are homeless “during a time frame when shelter space is unavailable.” But an Inlander investigation of court records reveals that since November 2019, Spokane Police have issued 30 citations for sit-lie or illegal camping on days the city’s own system reported no available low-barrier shelter space. ...continued on page 10
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NEWS | HOMELESSNESS “ROOM TO OPERATE,” CONTINUED... The police reports associated with some of those citations reveal a lack of clarity and consistency among police officers when determining whether there is open shelter space. Low-barrier shelter space, necessary to enforce these laws, do not include shelters that may impose religious requirements or require sobriety, like Spokane’s Union Gospel Mission. Yet in multiple instances since last year, officers counted those shelters as available bed space in their case reports. Other citations are inexplicable. One officer cited a man for sit-lie on Sept. 20 and wrote that “many different options and resources were available.” Updated nightly, the city’s shelter capacity report shows that both low-barrier shelters for single men, including House of Charity, should have been listed as full at the time the citation was written. Still, the officer not only listed House of Charity as an available resource, but also “the many other parks near to downtown such as Coeur d’Alene Park.” Spokane Police spokeswoman Julie Humphreys says the department stands by the decisions officers make in the field. Though she admits she’s unsure why one officer referenced Coeur d’Alene Park, she emphasizes that the goal of these citations is to get people the help they need in Community Court. “We all want to take care of our homeless situation and do it in the best possible way,” Humphreys says. “The reason for sit-lie and camping [laws] is that the community doesn’t want homeless people laying around downtown, or camps and all that come with it.” But City Council President Breann Beggs says he’s concerned that police may be issuing citations when there’s no shelter space. “That creates liability for the city to be sued,” Beggs says.
OUT OF SPACE
In early November 2019, the city of Spokane knew it didn’t have enough shelter space for the winter. City officials were still working out a deal with nonprofit Jewels Helping Hands to open a shelter on Cannon Street, but it wasn’t until the end of the month that the shelter finally opened. In the meantime, shelters for men, women and families all were regularly turning people seeking shelter away. That didn’t stop police from enforcing sit-lie and illegal camping laws. From Nov. 1 until Nov. 21 — before the 80 beds at the Cannon Shelter opened up — police issued a total of 68 citations for illegal camping or for sitting or lying on public sidewalks. A majority of those citations, including Epperson’s, were issued when there was shelter space available, in compliance with the Ninth Circuit ruling.
But 13 were issued on days when the city’s reporting system indicated that there wasn’t space for that person. Spokane Police don’t have a written procedure for how they determine shelter space. But they do follow a process, Humphreys says. Shelters report bed space to the city each night between 5 pm and 10 pm, and those numbers go into a spreadsheet maintained by the city. (The city provided the Inlander with a copy of this report dating back to November 2019.) That information is fed into a dashboard that police can use to check shelter space from the night before, Humphreys says. Police check that each time before issuing a citation, she says. Assuming that as the standard process, however, is how the Inlander found the 30 examples of citations issued when the city reported no shelter space. All the citations obtained by the Inlander were issued during the day, before shelters reported to the city again at night. That should rule out the possibility that police used shelter availability from the day of the citation instead of the day before. Asked for an explanation for these citations, Humphreys says while police do check the dashboard for shelter space, it’s more “fluid” than that because even if there are no bed spaces, there could be daytime services available at the shelters. Police often report available space if a shelter is simply open that morning, even if it was full the night before. There was no shelter space available the morning of Nov. 11, going by the reported data from the night before, for example. But four men were cited for unlawful camping that morning anyway, starting at 8:25 am, because police said the House of Charity was “open” from 7:30 am until 12 pm, Humphreys explains. She gave the same explanation for several other citations through the winter. (Truth Ministries, too, was under contract with the city to operate as a low-barrier shelter in November, but failed to report its space to the city many nights.) The pandemic changed all this. Mayor Nadine Woodward publicly said the city wouldn’t be enforcing sit-lie or camping laws in March, and indeed, records show there were no citations for sit-lie or illegal camping issued during a two-month period between late March and late May — except for one, on April 1. Again, in that instance, records show there was no space available for the cited man. Because of COVID-19, shelters like House of Charity stopped allowing guests for daytime services if they
“Could there be a mistake somewhere in all of this? It’s possible. It’s certainly nothing intentional.”
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weren’t staying there the previous night, and daytime shelter for the homeless became difficult to find. Police could no longer say House of Charity was open for anyone just because it was open at all. Still, they issued 48 more citations from July 25 through Sept. 30. Onequarter of them came on days that the police would have
looked at their dashboard and seen that shelter was full. The explanations justifying enforcement of those are often confounding: u One officer cited a man for sit-lie and said Truth Ministries was available — but Truth Ministries has not been under contract from the city since April and has not been a part of the “low-barrier” shelter system since then, the city confirms. u Four more men were cited together on Aug. 31. The Inlander could not immediately access this case report, but Humphreys explains that the officer wrote that there was space for the men at House of Charity. The shelter capacity report, however, says otherwise. u A different officer cited three more men between Sept. 8 and Sept. 10, writing that there was space available for men and women “at all times at several different shelters.” In fact, both shelters for adult men reported zero space every single day from Sept. 7-Sept.11. u An officer listed Coeur d’Alene Park as an available resource for a man on Sept. 30. It’s the same officer who did so 10 days earlier, only this time he listed addresses for three other shelters available to the man. Those shelters were either not part of the city’s low-barrier system or were not shelters for single men. Presented with each of these cases, Humphreys says SPD still backs its officers and their judgment. “They’re not writing reports and saying there’s space unless there was space,” she says. “Could there be a mistake somewhere in all of this? It’s possible. It’s certainly nothing intentional.”
ADDRESSING THE ISSUE
Spokane Police Chief Craig Meidl says his command staff recently brought up this issue of how officers report shelter space when enforcing sit-lie and camping laws.
Meidl floats one way to possibly address any confusion: Instruct officers to be clearer about where shelter space is available in their case reports. “Go down and have them actually write in their report, not that they checked and there is capacity, but have them write the specific capacity at that moment that the officer looked,” Meidl says. “Because I think that will help.” Beggs would go further. He argues that the nightly shelter capacity report should be available for the public to see at any time. He adds that once the numbers are reported at night, police should go by those numbers until the new report comes out, instead of the current system, which may count daytime services, and that Beggs calls a “moving target.” He says that would eliminate some current uncertainty for all involved. “People being arrested, under the Constitution, are entitled to that certainty. They shouldn’t have to guess, ‘alright, is there space or not?’” Beggs says. “Everyone wants certainty, whether you’re a business owner, a neighbor of Coeur d’Alene Park, or an advocate.” Others argue sit-lie and illegal camping laws shouldn’t be enforced at all when there’s no 24/7 emergency drop-in shelter. Julie Garcia, founder of Jewels Helping Hands, says she doesn’t understand how it’s legal to enforce them now, even if there might be a bed available later that night. “How do you issue a ticket for a bed that they might be able to get later, but that they technically aren’t able to go to at that point?” Garcia says. The constant citations can make people feel harrassed, Garcia says. To her point, of those 30 citations issued since November when records showed no shelter space, all but six of those people LETTERS had been cited at least one Send comments to other time for sit-lie or illegal firstname.lastname@example.org. camping. One man racked up 12 citations since 2018. Those repeat citations make Woodward question whether these citations are working as intended — though instead of less enforcement, she wonders if it’s a call for more accountability for those cited. “I know people who are cited and go through Community Court have many, many chances to try to right their lives and get the help they need,” Woodward says. “I think we need to take a look at that and just make sure there is accountability in that system and that we are seeing people moving out of homelessness.” For her part, Epperson says she graduated twice from Community Court. She calls it a good experience that helped her get drug addiction treatment and other services. But she’s still waiting to find a home. And for now, she’s camping outside, trying to avoid police until either shelter opens up, or she can find a home of her own. “I’ve been trying to change my ways,” she says. “I’m really hoping to be inside… and be able to relax, and call it my home.” n Staff reporter Daniel Walters contributed to this report.
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Mailing it in With much of America voting by mail, what might follow in the days after election night? By Samantha Wohlfeil
ith wall-to-wall TV and online coverage of the presidential election, many Americans will plan to stay up late on Nov. 3 to find out who’ll be the next leader of the richest nation on Earth. But with more votes coming in by mail due to COVID-19, it’s possible that the desire for instant gratification will instead demand patience into the following days or even weeks until a winner is officially declared. The act of voting by mail, also known as absentee voting in some states, is nothing new, explains Travis Ridout, director of Washington State University’s School of Politics, Philosophy and Public Affairs. But for some states, having large numbers of voters using that method is new this year. “There are several states, especially in the West, who have been perfecting this for the last decade or even longer,” Ridout says. “I think the concern comes in when states that were used to collecting 90 percent of the votes at polling places are now in a situation where over onehalf the people are voting by mail, so they’re making a quick transition.” With that shift, it could take more time to process and count those ballots in places that aren’t accustomed to having mail-in turnout at those levels, he says. “When you’re doing something at that scale for the first time there will inevitably be a few hiccups,” Ridout says. “Yet in the end, assuming we give election officials the time to do their job, I’m confident we’ll get the results.” Allowing sufficient time for vote tallies is something that election experts and nonpartisan polling groups alike have been hammering on for weeks now: Election night may not bring a crystal clear picture of who won the presidential vote, but that will become clear in the following days and weeks as all ballots are processed and vote tallies are finalized. Technically, waiting until early December to find out who the next president will be is nothing new, explains Michael Ritter, an assistant professor in the WSU School of Politics, Philosophy and Public Affairs. “Actually when a person casts a vote for president, they’re voting for the electors,” Ritter says. “By Dec. 8, all state recounts must be completed, and Dec. 14 is when we have the meeting of electors who will formally cast their ballot or Electoral College votes for the president.
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This is entirely normal.” But with increasing partisanship and political tension in the country, some worry that people won’t recognize that should the presidential race be close, it could take weeks to learn the real winner.
‘BLUE SHIFT’ OR ‘RED MIRAGE’
In the last several presidential elections, a blue shift has happened during election week, where votes have appeared to lean more Republican on election night, but then shift Democratic as more votes are tallied in the days after. Partly, that’s because some states continue counting mail-in ballots after Election Day. For example, Washington allows ballots to be postmarked by that day and received up to five days later by election officials. Meanwhile, other states like Idaho and Oregon require those ballots to be in hand on election night. Either way, processing those envelopes can take more time than other methods of in-person voting likely to be reported out that night. That can create a so-called “red mirage,” where Republican candidates in certain races may appear to be leading initially, before ultimately losing to their Democratic opponents. “You may see a report on election night that’s based on voting tallies from the polling place, which suggests a big Republican win, but then those mail-in ballots come in and all of a sudden, Democrats are doing much better,” Ridout says. “We often see this in Washington. King County, because it’s so large, is slower to release numbers and Democrats end up catching up when it looks like the Republican may have done well.” Polls show that nationally, more Democrats plan to vote by mail this year than Republicans, who plan to vote in person in larger numbers. It’s unclear yet if that “blue shift” might hold true or, with efforts emphasizing the early return of ballots and early voting, if more Democratic votes will already be included in the election night tallies. If a state is reporting a large percentage of its count and it appears to lean strongly one way or another, it’s unlikely those later counts would shift who is set to become the next president.
WASHINGTON LEGISLATURE......................18 GOVERNOR.........................19
Historically, the “blue shift” has been very small percentage-wise, even as mail-in voting increased from about 10 percent of voters in 2000 to 21 percent of voters using that method in 2016, according to a recent study by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Those researchers found that most times since 1948, the shift in state totals has gone no more than 0.5 percentage points one way or the other, though at times it has shifted 2 percent. Importantly, the authors of the study, “Explaining the Blue Shift in Election Canvassing,” note that, “Indeed, in 2016 no states saw the final canvassed vote count overturn the election-night results.” But they also write that had certain swing states flipped a tenth of a percentage point that night, Hillary Clinton could have won the electoral vote and presidency. Still, the blue shift is biggest in states that already tend to vote blue, the authors go on to say, and if there’s a swing of more than one-half a percentage point to one party or the other, the potential for late tallies to shift the vote significantly is “moot.” Regardless, some pundits and Democrats especially are warning about the potential effect ahead of Polls show that nationally, more election night. With an Democrats plan to vote by mail this eye on President Donald year than Republicans, who plan to Trump’s propensity to vote in person. DEREK HARRISON PHOTO post rapidly on Twitter while disregarding facts, their concern is that he could claim a victory before a real tally is complete to show whether he won or lost. Trump has repeatedly questioned the potential for fraud via vote-by-mail even as he plans to vote that way himself and his campaign has encouraged his followers to do so. Election officials insist that fraud is exceedingly rare in all types of voting, there are safeguards in place to catch it when it does happen, and that mail-in voting can actually expand access to elections for many.
ACCESSIBILITY AND WHAT HAPPENS IF IT’S UNCLEAR
Ritter, who teaches political science at WSU, released a book with a colleague earlier this year called Accessible Elections: How the States Can Help Americans Vote. ...continued on page 14
REFERENDUM 90.............. 20 5TH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT............................. 20
IDAHO RACES.................... 20 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION.............................22
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 13
“MAILING IT IN,” CONTINUED...
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His research found that voting by mail and early voting increased turnout for underrepresented groups such as the poor and racial minorities. However, other elements of election administration may contribute to those votes not being counted, from issues getting ballots to an official dropbox to ensuring those that did get turned in are included in final tallies. One potential issue with mail-in ballots is ensuring they are filled out correctly for counting machines to read, and ensuring that signatures on the outside privacy envelope match the signatures on file. Voters may track the status of their ballot in Washington and Idaho and check to see if their vote has been counted or if there is an issue they need to resolve at myvote. wa.gov and idahovotes.gov. While there’s some risk of those issues with your mail-in ballot, there’s an even greater risk that the weather could be bad, child care could fall through, or work responsibilities could get in the way of someone going to vote in person on Election Day, Ridout says. That’s why generally, members of both major parties encourage early voting and turning in votes early. Fraud with mail-in voting is also extremely rare, Ridout explains. “It’s usually something that’s not an organized effort, it’s grandpa died and grandma knew who he wanted to vote for so she filled in his ballot for him, that sort of thing,” Ridout says. “There’s just little evidence of that, and the fact we have any evidence at all of that is because we are very good at verifying those mail-in ballots.” Should there be questions about vote totals in the presidential election, lawsuits may be filed. The most infamous recent example was over “hanging chads” on punched paper ballots in Florida in the 2000 election. Should the race just be really close, and neither Trump nor former Vice President Joe Biden get at least 270 electoral college votes, the matter would go before the House of Representatives, which would vote by state, with an entire delegation needing to agree on their vote. In 1825, Congress elected John Quincy Adams over Andrew Jackson when neither candidate won a majority of electoral votes, even though Jackson had won the plurality of the popular vote. In a slightly different scenario in 1877, Congress wound up appointing a commission to deal with questions around electoral votes in three Southern states. The commission awarded the presidency to Rutherford B. Hayes over Samuel J. Tilden, who had actually won the popular vote and electoral count. “Eventually Rutherford B. Hayes was awarded the presidency even though he didn’t win the popular vote. This is in the era of Reconstruction, it was very intense, I might even argue it’s a more intense election than the 2020 election,” Ritter says. “If the country could endure that in the years after the Civil War, I have faith in our system today.” n
IDAHO VOTING Many more Idaho voters than usual will be voting by absentee ballot this election. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, voters who wanted to participate in the May presidential primary had to sign up for absentee voting, as inperson voting was not allowed. The Idaho absentee status applies for a year, so those voters should have received their ballots in the mail for the General Election. Absentee ballots may be returned by mail, in person at your county election office official dropbox, or on Election Day at your polling location. In-person early voting is open in most counties at election offices now through Oct. 30, and in-person voting will open again on Election Day, Nov. 3. Same-day voter registration is available. (SW)
14 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
A protest on May 31 put Spokane police on notice: These aren't normal times, says Police Chief Craig Meidl.
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Ballots and Bullets Extremist experts and law enforcement agencies brace for post-election violence — but don’t want you to freak out By Daniel Walters
o the experts who follow extremist violence, September’s presidential debate was alarming. It wasn’t just that President Donald Trump refused to commit to a peaceful transition and continued to whip up conspiracy theories. It was that, when his opponent and the moderator pushed him to explicitly condemn the Proud Boys — a far-right extremist organization that glorifies street fights — Trump decided to go in a different direction. “Proud Boys: Stand back and stand by. But I’ll tell you what, I’ll tell you what, somebody’s got to do something about antifa and the left, because this is not a right-wing problem.” To many Proud Boys, “stand by” didn’t sound like a condemnation. It sounded like military instruction from the commander in chief. “Proud Boys all over the place were like, ‘Yes, sir, we’re standing by!” says Jessica Reaves, editorial director with the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism. A few days later, Trump attempted to clean up his answer on Fox News. “I condemn the Proud Boys,” Trump said. “I don’t know much about the Proud Boys, almost nothing, but I condemn that.” But according to Reaves, the Proud Boys — like many extremist groups — found ways to explain away his condemnation. “They have convinced themselves that the president
is talking directly to them only when he says the things that they want to hear,” Reaves says. The Proud Boys are just one reason why both law enforcement and observers are bracing for the possibility of a spate of election-related violence. While Washington state’s entirely mail-in voting system largely protects the voters from intimidation at the polls, the question of what happens after the election continues to loom. (Idaho will have a mix of mail-in and in-person voting.) If Biden wins, will armed right-wing extremists follow the lead of a president poised to claim that unusual ballot counts — as is expected with a late surge of mail-in Democratic votes — are evidence of a stolen election? If Trump wins, will there be riots from those who believe four more years of Trump will destroy America? Experts like Reaves have tried to strike a crucial balance: warning about extremism, but trying not to inadvertently suppress votes by sensationalizing the fear. “We’re not concerned that there’s going to be a ‘civil war’ before the election,” says Reaves. “I usually follow that up with an addendum: Who knows what happens after the election?”
A LIT FUSE
The 2020 election result will be just one more ingredient in an already boiling stew of tensions around race, police, riots, a pandemic and conspiracy theories. “There’s this roiling anger just below the surface,” Reaves says. “We’ve seen it all too many times in the last
several weeks manifest as violence.” According to a recent Politico article, a September poll showed that 44 percent of Republicans and 41 percent of Democrats said that there would be at least a “little” justification for violence if the other party’s nominee wins the election. When Trump won the 2016 election, the city of Portland responded with six straight days of protests. But those protests, despite the pleas of organizers to avoid violence, sometimes descended into riots, with masked anarchists bashing out storefronts and car windows. A TV station’s cameraman was attacked by those in the crowd. A 14-year-old kid shot and wounded a protester. Ever since, Portland has become the battleground for frequent physical skirmishes between left-wing groups like antifa — militant, loosely organized activists who argue that violence, even “proactive” violence, is justified to combat the far-right — and far-right groups like the Proud Boys. And into these fights, the police have lobbed barrages of rubber bullets and tear-gas canisters. Maybe the direction Portland went in after 2016 was an exception. Or maybe it was foreshadowing. In Spokane, Police Chief Craig Meidl says they’re constantly looking west to Seattle and Portland, watching the recent spate of protests, the riots and the police responses, hoping to learn about the sort of challenges the Lilac City could face. ...continued on next page
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 15
“BALLOTS AND BULLETS,” CONTINUED... “We’ve never seen anything after a presidential election in Spokane,” Meidl says. “But we also never saw anything like May 31.” Meidl’s referring to the first major George Floyd protest against police brutality in Spokane, when a handful of protesters began throwing rocks at police officers, smashing out downtown windows and looting stores. For the first time in decade, his officers made the controversial decision to use tear gas on a crowd. “We definitely feel like we’re in a new season, not just nationwide, but even in Spokane, in terms of our awareness of what can happen,” Meidl says. It’s not just on the left. Caravans of Trump supporters have started flocking to major cities where the protests are being held, adding fuel to a fire. Kyle Rittenhouse, the 17-year-old self-proclaimed “patriot,” crossed state lines for a rally in Wisconsin and ended up killing two protesters with an AR-15-style rifle, authorities say. He argues it was self-defense. In Michigan, the FBI recently arrested militia members who allegedly plotted to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. In Washington state this year, a group of far-right activists in Thurston County sought the backing of the local sheriff to conduct a “citizen’s arrest” of Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson. (The sheriff did not give them the green light.) Meanwhile, figures like outgoing state Rep. Matt Shea (R-Spokane Valley) have continued fanning the flames. Last month on his radio show, he argued that COVID-19 is a globalist control scam, that the Black Lives Matter movement is “under the influence of evil” that is “attempting to overthrow the United States of America and eviscerate our Constitution,” and that wildfires might have been “a coordinated attack as part of a ramp-up through the election by these socialist and communist forces in America.” Reaves, of the Anti-Defamation League, says, “Political leadership needs to dial down the rhetoric. We just see this really elevate heightened language across the board, and I feel like that’s incredibly dangerous.” Reaves stresses that most of the deadly extremist political violence in America has traditionally come from the right. So while far-left radicals may throw rocks or bottles or break windows, firearms can be deadlier. “There’s less of an embrace of gun culture on the left,” Reaves says. “You’re less likely to see a full-on, militia-style arming of groups.” But both Meidl and Reaves are seeing evidence that more left-wing groups may be picking up firearms, claiming that it’s necessary to defend themselves from extremist right-wingers. On Aug. 29, Portland antifa activist Michael Reinoehl
Self-identifying militia members openly carried firearms in downtown Spokane this spring. shot and killed Aaron Danielson, a former Spokane resident who supported the far-right Patriot Prayer group. Before he was killed by a U.S. Marshals task force, Reinoehl told Vice News that his actions were in self-defense and that the “shot felt like a beginning of a war.”
DOUSING THE TINDERBOX
With the election as another potential flashpoint, law enforcement has had to consider ways to prevent violence between opposing sides. “You have to keep them away from each other,” Reaves says. “It’s the only way you can set up a peaceful protest.” But to do that effectively, she says, law enforcement has to be seen as a neutral party. And right now? There’s a lot of distrust and anger about law enforcement. The national protest footage doesn’t just show protester violence — it shows a lot of brutality from police officers. “The perception is that they favor one side,” Reaves says. “They are people who believe that they are acting in some sympathetic ways to right-wing protesters.” Meidl says that lack of trust from some in the community in this environment has been frustrating — even hurtful — and has made their job harder. “It does add a layer of complexity when you are now looked at as a political arm instead of a neutral peacekeeper,” Meidl says. Spokane hasn’t had any big outbreaks in protest violence — from the left or the right — since that first protest this year. Meidl says the Police Department shifted its strategies. Recognizing that the presence of the police themselves could antagonize the crowd in this environment, they reduced the number of visible officers. Instead
of a big show of force, they kept a lot of the officers in reserve, ready to respond if needed. But he also heaps most of the credit on the protesters themselves. They’ve policed each other, he says, with the crowd shutting down any agitators instead of cheering them on. The more activists that condemn violence, he argues, the better. And when it comes to right-wing counterprotesters — or any protesters — carrying guns to the event, Meidl offers an explicit plea: Don’t. “You have emotion. You have different ideologies. You have intolerance,” he says. “You have compressed, dense areas with all of these people rubbing shoulders against each other. There’s just no purpose in bringing the guns down there.” Meanwhile, Reaves has a counterintuitive message: Don’t try to whip up fear. Law enforcement should keep tracking threats, she says, but the general public shouldn’t panic. “People need to tone it down,” Reaves says. “That’s my takeaway from all this, is everybody take it down a notch.” Rittenhouse killed two men in Wisconsin, having traveled there, he claimed, to protect businesses from destruction by the left. Reinoehl killed a man in Portland, he claimed, because he believed he was defending a friend from violence on the right. Fearing the worst, Reaves warns, can sometimes bring it about. “People are waiting for some massive conflagration and fighting in the streets,” Reaves says. “The more the expectation is set that that’s going to happen, the greatest the chances are of that happening.” n
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SPOKANE COUNTY COMMISSION DISTRICT 1
Ted Cummings, a Democrat and chairman of the clerical and technical unit for United Steelworkers Local 338, hopes to unseat Republican Josh Kerns, who has been on the Board of County Commissioners for four years. The two disagree on many issues, but they most vehemently disagree over Kerns’ not speaking out against Rep. Matt Shea for, among other things, visiting armed militants at an eastern Oregon wildlife refuge. Cummings says it’s a moral obligation for elected officials to call out a wrong and “confront hate.” Kerns, meanwhile, says that while he doesn’t agree with
everything Shea has done, it’s not Kerns’ place. He argues voters should instead focus on his work in making Spokane a “welcoming community and the best place for everyone to live, work and raise a family.” (WILSON CRISCIONE)
Incumbent Mary Kuney and challenger David Green may both have backgrounds as Certified Public Accountants, but that doesn’t mean they agree on how to spend money for Spokane County. Green, a Democrat, says the Republican county commissioners in the past have
favored “business interests over people.” He disagrees with how the commissioners spent the $91 million from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, arguing more should have been put toward food and rental assistance. He also criticizes the commissioners for cutting funding to the Spokane Regional Health District in 2017. But Kuney says her decisions have focused on people, along with businesses and economic recovery, pointing out that the county did put millions in CARES money towards food and rental assistance. She argues she has the financial expertise to continue to lead the county in the years ahead. (WC)
have you received your ballot? If you haven’t, contact the Spokane County Elections Office for a replacement, visit:
spokanecounty.org/elections Or contact the Spokane County Elections Office at 509-47 7-2320 OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 17
LEGISLATIVE DISTRICT 3
Andy Billig, left, a Democrat and the state Senate majority leader, touts his successes in getting legislation passed that benefits Eastern Washington, including funding for the North Spokane Corridor and the Senate’s COVID-19 response bill. But challenger Dave Lucas, a Republican and a retired Marine lieutenant colonel, argues Billig hasn’t wielded his power appropriately. He says the Legislature, facing a budget shortfall, needs to have a special session to deal with the crisis. (WC)
Marcus Riccelli, left, project manager for CHAS Health and a Democrat who’s served as a state representative since 2012, helped create the Washington State University medical school, and he pushed a bill that gives nurses rest breaks. He got a “Breakfast after the Bell” bill passed that gives low-income students meals in the morning, and since the beginning of the pandemic, he launched an effort called Spokane Food Fighters to serve meals to those struggling with food insecurity. His challenger, Laura Carder, is a Republican and a Quality Assurance Specialist. She says she will make the state more business-friendly by shedding regulations. She’s against mask mandates, and she is against taxpayer money paying for abortions and gender-reassignment surgeries. (WC)
LEGISLATIVE DISTRICT 4
LEGISLATIVE DISTRICT 6
Mike Padden, left, has held this seat since 2011, and has focused much of his time on sponsoring bills related to public safety — strengthening DUI laws and, recently, helping parents of minor crime victims be compensated for their time in court hearings and counseling. He’s up against John Roskelley, well-known among locals as a famed mountaineer and a former Spokane County commissioner. Roskelley, a Democrat, wants to focus on protecting seniors, retirees and the disabled. He also thinks the state has a spending problem — he has said he wants to amend that, while also eliminating tax exemptions for corporations. (WC)
Republican Mike Volz, left, was elected to this position four years ago, and for the last 10 years he’s served as chief deputy Spokane County treasurer. Zack Zappone, a Democrat, is a former full-time teacher, and now a substitute teacher in Spokane. The two differ on how to handle the budget problems facing the state: Volz wants to reduce spending overall, and Zappone wants to lean on the federal government in order to avoid cuts to education and other services. (WC)
Rep. Bob McCaslin is not as much of a lightning rod as Rep. Matt Shea — the current holder of this seat. But McCaslin, who has represented this district in Position 2 before filing for Position 1 when Shea dropped out, is certainly a Shea ally: He supports Shea’s idea to make Eastern Washington its own state, and he’s defended Shea in response to bad press, including when news broke that Shea offered to do background checks on political enemies. Democrat Lori Feagan, meanwhile, says that while it’s important to get Shea and his allies out of office, it’s just as important to get someone like her in office. Feagan is a nurse practitioner with decades of experience in health care and has said she wants to “rectify” the state’s “upside-down tax structure.” (WC)
POSITION 2 POSITION 2 POSITION 2
Timm Ormsby, left, who has worked as a cement mason, has served in this position since 2003, the same year Bob Apple started on Spokane City Council. Today, Ormsby remains as a state representative, and he’s the current chairman of the House Appropriations Committee. Bob Apple, meanwhile, was on Spokane City Council until 2012. The two have a stark contrast in ideology: Ormsby is a Democrat who believes in a mask mandate, while Apple, a Trump supporter according to the Spokesman-Review, questions a mask mandate and has minimized the risks of COVID-19, saying “people die from a cold,” too. (WC)
18 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
Former Spokane County Treasurer Rob Chase, left, was recruited to run for this seat by Rep. Matt Shea, whom Chase considers a friend, but Chase’s views can be more unpredictable. He typically holds libertarian views, yet supports an idea touted by Democrats to create a state bank. And dangerously, Chase has repeatedly promoted QAnon, the baseless, bizarre, anti-semitic conspiracy theory that predicts a showdown between Donald Trump and a horde of child-sacrificing satanic leftists who control the world. Chase’s opponent Lance Gurel, meanwhile, positions himself as the reasonable candidate in this race. Gurel is a Democrat who says he believes “families and workers come first” and he supports taxes on high earners instead of having the burden on low-income families. (WC)
Jenny Graham’s sister was murdered by the Green River serial killer, and that tragedy has shaped her advocacy for victims of human trafficking and abuse. But Graham has, unwittingly, spread baseless conspiracy theories — including elements of QAnon — on Facebook, including, for example, a link to a website that claims that demons, or possibly reptilian-human hybrids, are putting hundreds of thousands of missing children into sex dungeons. When the Inlander wrote about Graham sharing these links, she called reporter Daniel Walters a vulgar name and left a furious voicemail accusing him of being a “lying piece of shit.” The story of the voicemail blew up into national news, yet Graham never pointed to a specific inaccuracy in the original article. With all that said, Democrat Tom McGarry, a lawyer, faces an uphill battle in defeating Graham. McGarry says these are serious times that call for “serious people,” and he says Graham doesn’t exhibit the leadership needed to continue to serve in this position. (WC)
Where gubernatorial candidates Jay Inslee and Loren Culp stand on three big issues By Wilson Criscione
his year, Washingtonians have been hit hard by three issues that, in any other year, could each swing a gubernatorial election on its own. There’s the pandemic that has killed more than 2,300 people and devastated the state’s economy. There are the protests against police brutality of people of color (and, in Seattle, an armed occupation of what activists proclaimed an autonomous zone). And then there are the wildfires that continue to ravage across the state. This may shock you, but Gov. Jay Inslee, a Democrat, and challenger Loren Culp, a Republican and the police chief in Republic, disagree on all of these issues. Here’s what they have to say on the pandemic, protests and wildfires.
In terms of preventing deaths due to COVID-19, Washington, and Inslee, have been widely credited for the response to the pandemic. Washington was the first state to identify the novel coronavirus and was relatively swift in shutdown orders of schools, restaurants and businesses. Combined with a mask mandate later on, those measures have been some of the most successful in the country in terms of avoiding deaths compared to other states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Because Washingtonians are not listening to Donald Trump, and frankly, Chief Culp, they are wearing masks, they are social distancing, and as a result of that we have lowered our infection rate dramatically,” Inslee says in a recent debate against Culp. “We have saved lives.” But seven months later, many of these restrictions on everyday life remain in place, and there’s no end in sight. Culp argues that many of these restrictions, most notably a mask mandate, shouldn’t be dictated by the governor. Wearing a mask, he says, should be a personal choice. “The problem is when we have one person sitting in the governor’s office telling everyone what they are going to wear,” Culp says.
In their debate, Inslee finally admitted that
he may have made a “misstatement” when he said he didn’t know about the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone in Seattle two days after it was occupied by activists. But he says he provided support “as appropriate,” referring to the National Guard and State Patrol. Culp, meanwhile, says that Inslee is “soft on crime” and that Inslee either had no clue what was going on or was lying. When it comes to racial inequality and police brutality, Culp prefers to scrutinize isolated incidents rather than the bigger picture. During the debate with Inslee, Culp said he didn’t agree with ending qualified immunity that protects officers from civil lawsuits. (Note: He is facing a civil lawsuit in Republic over a sex abuse investigation.) Culp was also asked about officers who are rehired after being fired for misuse of force, but he demanded a specific example, and when given one, declined to weigh in on another police department outside his own besides saying he’s “all for” officers being held accountable generally. Culp has also said he doesn’t believe there is systemic racism. And when presented the opportunity to explain how, if there is no systemic racism, there still exist racial disparities in education, income and health outcomes, Culp dodged the question by simply pointing out that there are laws that say everyone will be treated equally. Inslee, by contrast, says he’s open to discussions on ending qualified immunity, but he hopes action to address racial inequity is not limited to criminal justice. That would mean better preparing young students of color for school and providing their families health care, he says.
Inslee has called the fires that have decimated small towns in Washington “climate fires,” while Culp has questioned climate change. But on the wildfires specifically, Culp blames poor forest management in the state and, by extension, Inslee. But Inslee, who has referred to Culp as “mini Trump,” blames Trump for slashing the budget for thinning forests. He adds it takes time for forest management, but that the state’s investment in forest treatment has gone up significantly since he’s been in office. n
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Already required in Washington schools, sex education would become more comprehensive for all ages should Referendum 90 pass. The referendum would enact Senate Bill 5395, which the Legislature passed early this year. While parents opposed to the measure have expressed concerns about their ability to take their children out of the courses or control the local lessons, the referendum will still allow parents to opt their child out and districts will continue to select their own curricula. Students in kindergarten through third grade will be taught social-emotional lessons like how to recognize emotions and personal opinions, and to respect that other people have different emotions and opinions. Districts may also offer age-appropriate sex-education such as understanding that “boys and girls have some body parts that are the same and some that are different” and learning medically accurate names for those body parts. For older students, comprehensive sex education is already taught in many districts, but Referendum 90 would require that all districts at a minimum include lessons covering seven bullet points. Summarized even more succinctly than in the voter guide, those include lessons on: 1) The physiological, psychological and sociological developmental
process; 2) Developing the skills to communicate respectfully and effectively, and to choose healthy behaviors and relationships based on mutual respect and affection, free from violence, coercion and intimidation; 3) Health care and prevention resources; 4) Abstinence and other methods of preventing unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases; 5) Developing meaningful relationships and avoiding exploitative relationships; 6) Understanding the influences of family, peers, community and the media on healthy sexual relationships; 7) Affirmative consent and responding safely and effectively when violence or a risk of violence may be present, with strategies that include bystander training. (SW)
U.S. HOUSE, IDAHO DISTRICT 1
Russ Fulcher — a former Boise technology company executive and Raul Labrador’s conservative successor — came into office embodying the Tea Party, smallgovernment style. Yet when it came time to support a $2.2 million stimulus to save the economy this year, he passionately defended his vote for it. Fulcher remains a staunch Trump supporter, shrugging off concerns about Trump’s pressure on Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden. His Democratic opponent, Rudy Soto, a member of the Shoshone-Bannock tribes and a National Guard vet, is challenging Fulcher on a platform of improving health care. (DW)
Idaho Sen. Jim Risch has chaired the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations over the last two years amid investigations into whether Trump colluded with Russia and impeachment hearings over his dealing with Ukraine. But when Risch isn’t refusing to answer media questions about Trump, he’s remained an unabashed defender of the president. Risch is running against Paulette Jordan, the former gubernatorial candidate who, despite — or because of — the swarm of national media attention over her potentially becoming the first female Native American governor of Idaho lost the 2020 race by over 21 points. (DW)
KOOTENAI COUNTY SHERIFF
5TH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT Last round, when U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers faced former Washington state Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown, some observers thought a nationwide blue wave might make it a real race. It didn’t happen: McMorris Rodgers beat Brown by almost 10 percentage points. But at the same time, McMorris Rodgers’ political influence has waned significantly: She’s out of Republican leadership, and Republican leadership is no longer in control of the House.
20 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
Since then, McMorris Rodgers has shown a brief willingness to defy Trump — opposing Trump’s national emergency declaration to build his border wall and his decision to lift some Russian sanctions. But while going up against perennial moderate Democrat Dave Wilson this year, McMorris Rodgers still mostly touts the Trump line, passionately defending the president even as Wilson critiques his record on the pandemic and health care. (DW)
In a quintessentially North Idaho development, two of three Kootenai County sheriff’s candidates are law enforcement officers who relocated from Southern California — and none of them are Democrats. Bob Norris, the Republican candidate, retired as a lieutenant in the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in 2014, and is endorsed by the union representing Kootenai County deputies and by Janice McGeachin, far-right lieutenant governor. Mike Bauer, an independent, once investigated white supremacist groups for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and has the endorsement of Spokane Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich. The final candidate, Libertarian Justin Nagel, is a carpenter with no law enforcement experience, but accuses the Sheriff’s Office of corruption, particularly related to his 2016 drunk driving arrest. (The charges against him were dropped.) (DW)
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President Trump and challenger Joe Biden.
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Wild and crazy guy vs. Boring old man Trump craves your attention. Biden promises he’ll be boring enough to ignore By Daniel Walters
resident Donald J. Trump is a wild and crazy guy. That’s his superpower. That’s how he won the 2016 primary — his reality show villain’s instinct for spectacle sucked away screentime from his rivals. That’s how he won the presidency. He was the Animal House candidate, the R-rated prankster raising a defiant middle finger against the preppie politicians, the crusty deans of the establishment, the prudes who tut-tutted that it was improper to say this or that. Forget being the candidate you’d want to have a beer with: Trump implicitly promised to take the nation on a never-ending pub crawl of one bonkers incident after another. You’d either be entertained or terrified, but at least you’d never be bored. And he kept that promise. The last four years have been one long night where so much unforgettable happened that you can barely remember anything the next morning: the fights over “very fine people” and “losers and suckers” and “fake news” and a “perfect phone call” and “shithole countries”; the allies he insulted and the dictators he exalted; the resignations and recriminations and outrages and kids in cages; the cavalcade of exposés on his escapades; the explainers of emoluments and collusion and obstruction and tax evasion; all the names that mishmash into a mush of Mnuchin and the
22 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
Mooch and Mueller and Manafort and Papadopoulos and Stephanopoulos; the pornstar payoff; the Bible-and-tear-gas photo op; the drumbeat of school shootings and mass shootings and officer-involved shootings; the burning forests and burning cities; the hurricane that his Sharpie couldn’t alter, the sickness that his makeup couldn’t conceal; the tallies of 20,000 lies and 200,000 lives… Trump was every morning headline, every late-night punchline, the first-course argument on every Thanksgiving menu — Trump, Trump, Trump, all the way down. He is the man who blots out the sun — an eclipse who demands you stare at him and only him. There was no GOP platform at the convention this year: Only the call for four more years of Mr. Trump’s wild ride, the claim that only a man of such brazen chaos could bring about law and order. “WHAT THE HELL DO YOU HAVE TO LOSE!!!” Trump tweets. And that Joe Biden guy? He’s an old man, Trump argues. He’s senile! Trump tweets a photoshopped meme of Biden in a nursing home with the caption “BIDEN FOR RESIDENT”. Biden, 77, is an old man. And that’s his superpower. Yes, he’s stubborn and cranky. He misspeaks, he rambles down long tangents about his old buddies from back in the day. But that’s a reason why he won the
primary: While other Democrats chased the retweets of Twitter lefties, Biden ignored most of that newfangled “woke” stuff. No, he says, he’s not a socialist. He doesn’t want to abolish ICE or defund the police or ditch Obamacare for Medicare for All. So while Biden’s platform is more liberal than Obama’s — and he keeps dodging questions about if he’ll pack the Supreme Court — Biden is campaigning, dispositionally, as the conservative candidate. He’s the one making the pitch to go back to the good ol’ days, when life moved a little slower, when Republicans and Democrats drank together at the same soda fountain. He’s the one promising that he can make America great again. If Trump’s the party animal, Biden is campaigning as the sober designated driver. He’s honestly not a lot of fun. But once the nightclub closes — they closed back in March — and you’re hungover, exhausted and literally sick, he promises to be the one who will hold your hair back as you vomit the last four years out of your system. For Trump, there is perhaps no higher crime and misdemeanor than to be lowenergy, to be dull, to be boring. So how could he be losing, he asks his captivated crowds, to “Sleepy Joe Biden”? But to Biden, that’s his pitch: Our nation is sick. Our nation is tired. And Sleepy Joe is the soft, calming voice that will finally let you go to sleep. n
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THE SUNNYSIDE Yes, you’re in the right spot: Now sit back and enjoy the ride STORY AND PHOTOS BY JOHN GROLLMUS
t’s 8:30 am, Saturday, mid-February in the mid-’80s and I’m standing in exactly the right place, on the right day, at the right time to achieve one thing and one thing only: Ski the most untracked powder possible. It’s 28 degrees, there’s just a slight breeze blowing at around 5 miles per hour, the sun is shining and the Norse God of snow, Ullr, has blessed my ski-fiend soul with 12 inches of shimmering snow at about a 10 percent water content. I’m not the first person to arrive at this sacred spot on this morning; there’s a handful of like-minded individuals who were motivated enough to beat me here. There’s a couple of grizzled older guys right up front with beards that make it look like this probably isn’t their first trip. Behind them, there are a couple of guys sporting the latest and greatest in winter outdoor gear, looking like while they might not be here every day, they mean business on this particular day. Then it’s us, my ski partner and I, a couple of high school kids who became infected with the powder disease at a very young age. Of course, as is the case on any powder morning, at any mountain, in any state, to say we were in the right place at the right time is a matter of opinion. A clear majority of powder hounds on this particular morning had chosen to make the short uphill walk to chair one at Schweitzer Mountain and get direct access to the steep tree skiing offered in the area known as the South Bowl. That majority was wrong. ...continued on next page
MOUNT SPOK ANE SCHWEITZER 49° NORTH LOOKOUT PASS SILVER MOUNTAIN LAST RUN
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ON THE COVER: 49 DEGREES NORTH MOUNTAIN RESORT BOB LEGASA PHOTO
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ESSAYS “THE SUNNYSIDE,” CONTINUED... Standing as we were, our smaller group, at the base of chair four, known these days as Sunnyside, put us in the ultimate position to stay ahead of the crowds and slice up the virgin powder canvas leaving only our tracks as evidence that we’d already been there. Starting at chair four on a powder morning in those days was akin to being in the pole position at the start of a NASCAR race. You were simply in the best position to be the first person to get out — and stay out — ahead of the throngs that followed. The terrain serviced by this beloved old Riblet double chair is not only straight fall line skiing, but much of it has the distinct advantage of being within eyesight of the lift itself. Back in the day, this gave a skier the ability to carve up the early morning untracked while also keeping an eye out for when the snooze button crowd finally arrived on the scene.
Soaking in the Sunnyside.
Commitment to powder days. W HI T EF IS H M OUN TA IN RES O R T
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26 SNOWLANDER OCTOBER 2020
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In the mid-’80s, the only way to get to the glorious powder goods of Schweitzer’s North Bowl was to drop in from the top of chair four. So when the crowds did begin to appear, the alert powder hound could quickly drop onto the backside and once again maintain the always important powder pole position to arrive on the scene of the untouched goods one step ahead. There was a lot of discussion and reflection about what replacing an old slow sentimental double chair with a newer, bigger, faster and less soulful version means about the future of our sport when the iconic Snow Ghost double fell victim to progress two seasons ago. But what got lost in that shuffle is that the old-school Schweitzer faithful still have one dear friend to turn to in the Sunnyside chair. Of course, these days much of the former glory has worn off. The birth of the Great Escape quad chair meant there was now a much quicker and more efficient way to get to the backside. The ability to access much of the Sunnyside terrain from that same quad chair has reduced the operating schedule to a level that makes riding it an afterthought to most skiers. The top and bottom lift shacks show all the signs of age you would expect. The unload at the top is basically death-defying compared to the gentle release of the newer detachable chairs. The paint on the lift towers is chipped and peeling. In short, a thorough examination of the chairlift previously known simply as chair four reveals almost nothing of its former status. But for any skier who has a touch of nostalgia running through their wintery veins, a few rides on this old beauty each season are a must. When you slow down and make Sunnyside a part of your ski life, you can still ski unbroken fall lines with little to no runout, you can still see lovers put their arms around each other on the chair and you can still have time to share a beverage with a friend. In short, you can still sit back and enjoy the ride, because it’s important to recognize and acknowledge that as it is with chairlifts, as it is in life, our past is always what has delivered us to where we have now arrived. n
SEASON PREVIEW on putting together a user group to fine-tune the idea, an effort very much in keeping with the mountain’s familyfriendly, community-centric spirit.
BOB LEGASA PHOTO
MT. SPOKANE SKI & SNOWBOARD PARK
ising from the center of the sprawling Mt. Spokane State Park, Mt. Spokane has been a local hotspot for riders of all skill levels for more than 80 years. Six lifts offer access to 52 runs across 1,704 skiable acres, as well as numerous tree-sheltered powder
stashes. Freestylers can hone their tricks in the resort’s popular terrain park, which will boast a few fresh features this season, and maybe get involved in a grassroots effort to add a rope-tow for even faster park laps. General manager Jim van Löben Sels says Mt. Spokane is working
WHAT’S NEW: Skiers and snowboarders will be stoked to learn that lifts at Mt. Spokane will be turning seven days a week through this coming January and February, and that those lifts will load 10 minutes earlier than usual (at 8:50 a.m., to be precise). According to Löben Sels, the resort has also contracted with local chef Chad White to up their restaurant game and develop handy grab-and-go options to “really tell a different story about food and skiing.” Season pass holders are guaranteed all the riding they can handle this season. But in response to COVID-19, Mt. Spokane will be limiting capacity on peak weekends and holidays, and once the cap on day passes is reached for a particular date, online sales will close. Face coverings will be mandatory in all indoor settings and in lift lines, Löben Sels says, and non-family lesson groups will max out at six. Most importantly, extended time indoors is going to be a no-no. “This is not a spectator sport year,” Löben Sels says. “The lodges are not going to be a spot where people can camp out for the day.” MAKING THE MOST OF IT: Last season’s early closure definitely stung. But those who weren’t able to fully explore the terrain off the new Northwood lift have something to look forward to. Plus, Löben Sels adds, if you order your day pass a week early, the resort will mail it to you. That way you can boot up at your vehicle and head straight to the slopes, something Mt. Spokane is encouraging all riders to do to keep themselves and others safe in 2020-21. — ALEX SAKARIASSEN
OCTOBER 2020 SNOWLANDER 27
SCHWEITZER MOUNTAIN RESORT
kiing’s always been a bit of a mystical sport. That aura fits nicely against the backdrop of Schweitzer Mountain, so named, local Sandpoint lore has it, for a Swiss hermit who once called it home. Today, the resort’s 2,900 skiable acres attract more than those seeking forested tranquility. Shredders flock to the open bowls. Park rats stomp any and all of three terrain parks. Families revel in the something-for-everyone vibe, from the extensive Nordic trail system to twilight skiing. Yet there’s a sense that history still lurks somewhere on the mountain, flitting between Schweitzer’s snow ghosts. WHAT’S NEW: Staff at Schweitzer had a busy off-season, logging and brush-cutting some 200 acres between the Outback Bowl’s Stella lift and Phineas Forest. Marketing manager Dig Chrismer says the results are “amazing,” reminiscent of the glading work done along the backside’s newer lifts last season. Due to the pandemic, Chrismer characterizes this as “a locals’ winter.” Season pass holders will have guaranteed access, as will guests in on-mountain accommodations. But there will be no sales at the ticket window. Instead, day-pass sales
SCHWEITZER MOUNTAIN RESORT PHOTO
will open online for the whole season Nov. 9, and once sales for a particular date hit capacity, that’s it. Specific day-pass counts won’t be set until season pass sales close on Oct. 31. “We’re just trying to keep it as close to home as possible this year,” Chrismer says. “I just think it’s the prudent thing to do.” Also, masks will be mandatory in all facilities and wherever social distancing isn’t possible. MAKING THE MOST OF IT: Chrismer’s pro-tip for
the winter is to plan ahead. That could mean pulling the pin on a season pass, setting a few days in stone months in advance, or deciding here and now that this is your season to stick to cross-country or fat biking. Keep in mind, Chrismer adds, that the La Nina forecast makes for a potentially fantastic snow year. “We all had cabin fever from COVID in the spring and summer. Don’t carry it over into the winter.” — ALEX SAKARIASSEN
BOB LEGASA PHOTO
49 DEGREES NORTH MOUNTAIN RESORT
hether you’re a powder rider or a corduroy nut, snow depth is everything. And at 49 Degrees North, rock skis are a rare necessity. The mountain’s headwalls, groomers and gob-smacking glades — all 2,325 acres of them — get hammered with an average annual snowfall of 300-plus inches, and seven lifts make a day on the move a breeze. Terrain parks, night skiing and 10 miles of cross-country trails are there to scratch any itch the winter storm clouds can’t quite satisfy. WHAT’S NEW: As 49 Degrees enters its second full season under the ownership of CMR Lands LLC, man-
28 SNOWLANDER OCTOBER 2020
agement expects to have a new host of snow-guns ready to start making the white stuff. The mountain is candid, however, about the different look the pandemic will bring this year. According to Emily McDaniel, director of marketing and communications, 49 Degrees doesn’t anticipate any limits on day tickets at this time, but capacity will be reduced in the lodge and rental shop to help meet social distancing guidelines. Staff and guests will be required to wear face coverings indoors and in more congested outdoors spaces such as ticket windows, lift lines and unloading zones. Given the unpredictability of the coronavirus situation, McDaniel encourages visitors to check the 49
Degrees website routinely for up-to-date information. MAKING THE MOST OF IT: Just like other mountains in the area, 49 Degrees is urging riders to invest in a season pass this year to ensure consistent access even if the resort’s capacity gets dialed back. But if a pass isn’t in the budget, making your turns on a weekday offers the best chance of beating the crowds (and possibly any future limits on ticket sales). On that note, keep in mind that 49 Degrees will be operating seven days a week from Dec. 18 to Jan. 5. — ALEX SAKARIASSEN
SEASON PREVIEW wildly different way to enjoy Lookout’s 540 skiable acres. Riders can have their pick of long rolling groomers, powder-filled glades or steep moguled headwalls. And at the end of each day, there’s the likely promise that next time, every track will be filled back in. WHAT’S NEW: Those who weren’t able to hit Lookout Pass before last season’s early closure will finally get the opportunity this time around to ride the frontside quad, and the grinding down of stumps off chair three will definitely enhance the tree-skiing experience. Otherwise, says marketing and sales manager Matt Sawyer, COVID-19 is going to make for a much different look at Lookout in 2020-21. The mountain isn’t looking at limiting ticket sales yet, but masks will be a must indoors and in hightraffic areas. There won’t be any place inside to stash packs or hang out for long periods, Sawyer adds, though expanded outdoor seating should give people plenty of space to enjoy lunch. Also, private lessons will be available, by reservation, for families with mixed skill levels in an effort to keep household groups together. LOOKOUT PASS PHOTO
LOOKOUT PASS SKI & RECREATION AREA
ookout Pass is something of a magnet for snowfall. Situated along the Idaho-Montana border just off I-90, the area attracts an annual average of more
than 400 inches of snow, making it a regional favorite for early-season turns. The summit of Runt Mountain marks the meeting point of three separate lifts, each offering a
MAKING THE MOST OF IT: Based on the record number of visitors along the Route of the Hiawatha Scenic Bike Trail this summer, Sawyer anticipates a busy winter season for Lookout. He recommends snagging a day pass online in advance of any trip. Keeping a few extra layers in the car, along with some snacks, will give guests a safe and distanced option for breaks throughout the day. As for Sawyer’s tip for navigating the mountain: “I would say keep your nose pointed into the sun on cold days, and if you’re into the powder, the trees will definitely be the place to be.” — ALEX SAKARIASSEN
SILVER MOUNTAIN RESORT
ust a hop, skip and a gondola ride from I-90, Silver Mountain offers skiers and snowboarders a dizzying array of snow-laden glades, shreddable steeps and lengthy ridge runs. The resort’s 1,600-plus acres rack up an average of 340 inches of snow annually, and a whopping 50 acres of night skiing keep the turns coming well after the sun slips behind Wardner Peak. Speaking of Wardner, a short skin or boot-pack up Silver’s southwestern boundary grants thrillseekers access to a particularly tasty collection of mountaintop trees accessible strictly to those willing to work for it. Such a climb can make for sore muscles, which makes the resort’s indoor water park in the gondola village all the more enticing. WHAT’S NEW: Snowsports newbies are set for a top-notch season at Silver with the addition of a covered, double-wide magic carpet on the beginner hill. And according to marketing associate Siobhan Ebel, the new Silver Inn will offer guests a lower-cost alternative to the village’s Morning Star Lodge. On the COVID-19 front, Silver is still hammering out the details, but Ebel says the season will likely see limitations on day tickets during weekends and holidays. Masks will be required indoors in keeping with local health protocols, and lodge tables will be spaced to meet the necessary 6 feet for social
SILVER MOUNTAIN RESORT PHOTO
distancing. The water park is subject to face-covering requirements and capacity limits as well. Ebel recommends people check Silver’s website for up-to-date info, and encourages those looking to book rentals or ski lessons to do so in advance. There will be no on-mountain day care this season. MAKING THE MOST OF IT: There’s no wrong way
to ride Silver. That said, Ebel’s best tip for maximizing the Silver Mountain Resort experience is to plot a midweek getaway and book a stay through Silver’s Save Big promotion before Jan. 4. “It is $58 per person per night in a deluxe studio, and that includes water park access, lift tickets and lodging,” Ebel says. “It’s probably our best deal we offer during the year.” — ALEX SAKARIASSEN
OCTOBER 2020 SNOWLANDER 29
dining • shopping • culture Businesses are working hard to serve customers and stay safe: Support them and you support our region’s recovery.
MEALS FOR THE RONALD MCDONALD HOUSE FROM THE BACKYARD PUBLIC HOUSE
It Takes a Village The important steps that were taken to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 had consequences that weren’t always immediately visible. As the public watched restaurants shift to takeout-only service or temporarily close their doors during the early stages of the pandemic, there were other kitchens that fell silent, too. At the Ronald McDonald House, which provides shortterm accommodation to families with sick children, the volunteer-driven Make-a-Meal program was suspended. “When your child is sick in the hospital, and you’re spending the majority of your days with them, the Ronald McDonald House tries to provide for some of your ancillary needs,” says Jerid Keefer, co-founder and executive director of the Community Cancer Fund. “One less thing that
you have to worry about is what you’re going to have for dinner.” But without outside community groups like the Boy Scouts donating their time to help to cook meals each evening, it was much harder for the Ronald McDonald House to meet those needs and make life a little more comfortable for the patients and their families. As Keefer points out, “COVID may have shut everything down, but cancer is still going on.” Keefer and others at the Community Cancer Fund saw a chance to support the Ronald McDonald House families as well as Spokane’s local restaurants at a time when they both could use some help. Keefer initially reached out to Matt Goodwin’s Goodwin Group (Barnwood Social, Backyard
BACK TO BUSINESS PARTNER ORGANIZATIONS
30 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
Public House, among others) and Adam Hegsted’s Eat Good Group (Gilded Unicorn, Yards Bruncheon, to name just two) to see if they’d be game. “In addition to operating restaurants, they’re huge advocates for this community. We felt that working with them to facilitate this would be a win–win,” Keefer says. Jory Hustad, the food and beverage director at the Goodwin Group, certainly sees the resulting partnership that way. “We are beyond grateful for the support and opportunity to give back. With Community Cancer Fund’s support, we’ve been able to fulfill the needs of those families and support our staff all at the same time,” says Hustad. “Hopefully that has brought a glimmer of light and eased the burden a little for everyone.” By further partnering with musician Kelley James and his ambitious Million Meals Tour to feed hungry families across America, the Community Cancer Fund was later able to commit to providing a total of 4,000 meals for the families staying at the Ronald McDonald House through the end of the year. Since then, they’ve expanded their restaurant collaboration to include Longhorn Barbecue and Black Tie Catering. “Today, with the meal program continuing, it’s a necessary comfort for these families as they focus on their ill children and don’t have to worry about what they are having for dinner,” says Mike Forness, the executive director of Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Inland Northwest. “To me, this is a shining example of the great things our community does when we work together,” he adds. “It’s been crucial for our families and hopefully the local restaurants have benefitted a little from the program as well.” For Keefer, it’s easy to measure success in terms of the number of meals provided or the number of restaurants that have been supported so far. But he says the bigger reward for everyone involved has been “sticking to their strengths” and doing whatever they can to make the indirect impact of the pandemic less severe. “I don’t know how you’d quantify peace of mind, but it’s been really cool to see,” Keefer says. “It checks a lot of boxes.” u To find out more about the Community Cancer Fund and how it’s supporting Inland Northwest restaurants alongside the families at the Ronald McDonald House, visit communitycancerfund.org/MillionMeals.
MACKENZIE RIVER PIZZA AMERICAN • SOUTH HILL Transporting you to the very heart of the Northern Rockies, the casual, rustic atmosphere with unique Montana lodgepole furniture, stunning panoramic canvas and historic photographs sets the tone for distinctive, creatively prepared food served by vibrant employees renowned for passing their upbeat attitudes onto our customers. Along with our acclaimed gourmet pizzas, you will find everything from fish tacos, frontier ribs and Buffalo chicken mac and cheese to a fresh Cobb salad, housemade soups and artichoke dip. 2910 E. 57th Ave., 315-9466, mackenzieriverpizza.com
BISTANGO BISTANGO MARTINI LOUNGE SPIRITS • DOWNTOWN Bistango Martini Lounge is Spokane’s true lounge experience in the heart of downtown Spokane! A Spokane original since 2005. Serving handcrafted cocktails using premium liquors shaken and stirred with the freshest ingredients, specialty wine, beer and paired with bistro-style eats menu. Happy hour daily, 3-6 pm. We will follow all CDC and local health department guidelines in keeping our guests safe. Serving at half capacity, sanitizing every table and seat after each use, sanitizing our space continuously. 108 N. Post St., 624-8464, bistangolounge.com
EAT GOOD CAFE AMERICAN • LIBERTY LAKE Our restaurant’s philosophy is based on authenticity. Not in the traditional sense, but to strive to create food and hospitality from our core. To learn from our past, our present and to display a sense of ourselves in every aspect of our hospitality. When our guests leave our restaurants and events, they feel like they have experienced something a little different and very special. 24001 E. Mission Ave., (707) 495-7713, eatgoodcafe.com
FIELDHOUSE PIZZA & PUB PIZZA • NORTH SIDE Pizza is more than pizza. We believe food is more than just food. We believe food should be shared with great friends and family. We strive to create an environment meant for telling tall tales, laughing out loud, cheers-ing
TERRY'S BREAKFAST & LUNCH drinks and rooting for your favorite team. We are more than pizza; we are a part of your community. We mean it when we say, “Your neighborhood. Your Fieldhouse.” 4423 W. Wellesley Ave., 474-1991, yourfieldhouse. com
HOGWASH WHISKEY DEN SPIRITS • DOWNTOWN Located in the basement of the historic Washington Cracker Building in downtown, Hogwash is Spokane’s best-kept secret “speakeasy” style bar. Featuring a top-notch whiskey collection, combined with classic and modern craft cocktails and handcrafted comfort food, our cozy space is the perfect spot for adventurous food and drink seekers. Special accommodations: limited occupancy, designated staff per table to decrease interactions, increased cleaning frequency, vapor barriers between booths. 304 W. Pacific Ave., 869-0839, drinkhogwash.com
IZUMI SUSHI & ASIAN BISTRO ASIAN • SOUTH HILL Izumi Sushi Bar & Asian Bistro provides an exclusive dining experience of fusion-style Asian cuisine reminiscent of our great family values. As proud Chinese American owners, we offer everything from traditional sushi rolls to savory wok-fried Chinese entrees using only the highest quality ingredients. If you’re a novice sushi eater or someone with a versatile palate, you are sure to find something that suits your taste. 4334 S. Regal St., (541) 285-0626, izumi-spokane.com
AMERICAN • SPOKANE VALLEY Come on in and let us do your homestyle cooking! We have weekday breakfast and lunch specials and serve up traditional breakfast and lunch. We are a local establishment and the owner has been in the restaurant business for over 30 years. We are constantly wiping the tables and condiments, we have hand sanitizer and face masks available. We are just like everyone else who wishes we could get back to what we all remember to be normal and get back to catering events like the Spokane Fair, Pig Out in the Park and more. 7815 E. Trent Ave., 924-1481, facebook.com/terrysbreakfast-lunch
TOM SAWYER COUNTRY COFFEE COFFEE • KENDALL YARDS Tom Sawyer Country Coffee is a unique specialty coffee roaster with over 55 years of experience. We are dedicated to roasting the best coffee beans for you. Enjoy a delicious treat from our full espresso bar while watching the coffee roasting process or meet a friend on our patio. And don’t forget to pick up a pound to savor later. Your health and well-being are very important to us: Curbside service is available by calling 242-3124. We have cash, card and mobile payment options. 608 N. Maple St., 818-3355, tomsawyercountrycoffee. com
ABOUT Back to business • These weekly pages are part of a local marketing effort in support of the hospitality
sector brought to you by leading institutions and businesses to help promote the Spokane County economy, supported in part by Cares Act funding. With the goal of balancing commerce and public safety, you can follow along here in the Inlander, and via the links below, as local restaurants, shops and more share their stories and invite your support.
Fresh sheet deals • specials • updates BELLWETHER BREWING SPOKANE [ NORTH ] We have new outdoor heaters to expand our patio season for social distancing! 804 S. Monroe
VIEN DONG VIETNAMESE SPOKANE [ EAST ] Online ordering for takeout orders now available. 3435 East Trent Avenue
GENO'S TRADITIONAL FOOD & ALES SPOKANE [ NORTH ] Visit our website at www.wedonthaveone. com to stay up to date with our current specials and upcoming events. 1414 North Hamilton Street
BORRACHO TACOS & TEQUILERIA SPOKANE [ DOWNTOWN ] New Barbacoa Birria Consume Tacos! -$12. Mangonada Slushy - $13 211 North Division Street
THE GRAND TERRACE (OUTSIDE) SPOKANE [ DOWNTOWN ] Seasonal (weather permitting): Summer Patio May – September (4-9 pm); Winter Igloos November – February (3-8 pm). 333 W Spokane Falls Blvd
WINE AND TAPS SPOKANE [ SOUTH ] Wine & Taps is now open on Sundays. 4241 Cheney Spokane Road
NO-LI BREWHOUSE SPOKANE [ NORTH ] No-Li Brewhouse features $8 Taster Trays, $8 growlers and gourmet burgers made from some of the highest quality grass-fed beef in our region. 1003 East Trent Avenue
FRESH SHEET CONTINUES ON THE NEXT PAGE
more to come • Through the end of the year, watch
the Inlander for special Back To Business guides, along with special sections, sharing more recovery stories and community business features.
Safe business practice resources KindnessNotCovid.org • Financial resources for businesses InlandBizStrong.org
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 31
Fresh sheet deals • specials • updates MARANDOS RESTAURANT
SPOKANE VALLEY Now open for lunch, enjoy the best Taco Tuesday experience in Spokane. Tacos from $1. We offer 10 beers on tap. Drink specials all-day 11420 E SPRAGUE AVE
SPOKANE [ DOWNTOWN ] We will be back open Wednesday, Nov. 4th! New business hours will be 4 pm-11 pm Wed-Sat 21+ 22 West Main Avenue
JACKSON HOLE 2 SPOKANE VALLEY Daily specials, beer mixed drinks and food 122 South Bowdish Road
GANDER AND RYEGRASS
DOWNRIVER GRILL BARNWOOD SOCIAL KITCHEN AND TAVERN SPOKANE [ NORTH ] Every Tuesday, Barnwood offers upscale pub tacos at hugely discounted prices. 3027 Liberty Avenue
TRUE LEGENDS GRILL LIBERTY LAKE Monday: Any carry-out 12-inch signature pizza is only $9.99. (Promotion is for carry-out Only and not valid for dine-in.) 1803 North Harvard Road
DOWNRIVER GRILL SPOKANE [ NORTH ] Wednesday is $12 Burgerdome & Happy Hour Specials all day. 3315 W NORTHWEST BLVD
REMEDY KITCHEN & TAVERN SPOKANE [ SOUTH ] Szechuan Chicken Noodle Salad $12. Mongolian Beef & Broccoli $19. Ginger Coconut Rice Pudding $9. Remedy Gimlet $10. Down to Earth $10. 3809 South Grand Boulevard
AZARS RESTAURANT SPOKANE [ NORTH ] Mention this ad & get $5 off any bottle of wine dine in or take out. OR: Free Baklava with purchase of
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YAYA BREWING COMPANY SPOKANE VALLEY Now open six days a week (TuesSun) with a variety of grilled paninis made with cheeses sourced locally from Wanderlust Delicato (downtown Spokane). 11712 East Montgomery Drive
EL RODEO MEXICAN RESTAURANT CHENEY We will continue to have our patio open as long as the weather permits. 505 2nd Street
ALLIE'S VEGAN PIZZERIA & CAFE SPOKANE [ SOUTH ] Oktober Pizza: Pretzel crust, beer cheese sauce, sausage, roasted potatoes, carmelized onion, sauerkraut, cashew cheddar and spicy mustard. 1314 South Grand Boulevard #6
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ROCKET MARKET SPOKANE [ SOUTH ] Our weekly wine classes have moved from in person to virtual! Same time, same great wine, new virtual place! 726 East 43rd Avenue
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THE HUMAN ELEMENT
In rural communities, many restaurants often double as gathering places. They’re the cornerstone venues where extended families come together for a celebratory meal, or where large groups of friends meet after a football game. The arrival of COVID-19 changed that. “People come from Spokane, Pullman, Colfax and Rosalia, and they meet here in the middle,” says Melissa Bozarth, who owns the Harvester in Spangle. “Normally, we would be able to have larger parties of 15, 20 or even 50 people.” Her restaurant sits on the western tip of the town, one-quarter of a mile from U.S. Route 195, bordered on three sides by vast stretches of Palouse farmland. Without those large parties and other travelers making the intentional trip, much of their customer base vanished. “We didn’t have enough to-go orders to even keep the doors open, so we just closed,” she says, “and during that time period, we chose to do some remodeling and pray a lot that everything was going to be OK.” They decided to make the most of what would become a 10-week hiatus. Bozarth’s family and the Harvester staff repainted the building’s exterior and renovated the men’s room. Since the restaurant reopened at the end of May, she says that there has been an outpouring of gratitude from the community — not just for the
improvements, but simply because the Harvester is there for them once again. “You appreciate things more when you don’t have it. We’ve been very blessed that customers
are happy we’re back open again and have been hugely supportive of us,” she says. That support has also been a real source of positivity for Bozarth and her family. “Yes, it’s about the food, but it’s also about the human contact. One of the reasons we do this is for the community and for the human connection that we get from our staff and the people coming in the door. For us, the human element is a big deal.” u The Harvester Family Restaurant is located at 410 W 1st Street in Spangle. Visit harvesterrestaurant.com online or call 245-3552 for hours and menus.
MORE FRESH SHEET follow up-to-date info at btb.inlander.com 32 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
SEASON INTERRUPTED The anxiety — and hopes — of returning to the slopes BY ALEX SAKARIASSEN
ate last February, I stood on the front porch of a hillside vacation rental in Philipsburg, southeast of Missoula, staring at the smalltown streetlights and meandering brewery patrons over the rim of a beer glass. It hadn’t been the most exciting day of skiing on record. I’d racked up quite a few runs, but the rest of our annual ski trip crew opted for an extended lodge hang and an early departure over making laps in middling weather. I tried, with mixed success, to temper my frustration with the notion that the weekend was really about togetherness and all that jazz. “You guys hear Washington got more cases?” I asked the group, still gazing at the view. “Stuff’s crazy,” Kyle answered. “Think it’ll spread here?” We all shrugged. None of us knew we were whiling away the final evening of our season on that deck, or that long months would pass before some of us would see one another again. Months riddled with anxiety, with frustration, with a sense of isolation that texting and occasional video chats could stave off for only so long. Months that, for me at least, were painfully absent of something that could counter my listlessness: skiing.
Reminiscing about those last days on the mountain. It’s been a hard year for all of us. We’ve been deprived of so much, and to have the one constant of winter torn away early felt like COVID-19’s twist of the knife. March brought a wave of resort closures that crashed from one coast to the other, thrusting the ski industry itself into chaos. Whole towns felt the pinch, nursed along by federal relief dollars but denied the cultural juice supplied by throngs of spring riders. Some sought their lost turns in the backcountry. Others heeded the advice of elected officials not to engage in risky activity. Better to sacrifice a season than chance taking up critical hospital space in the event of an accident. Now the leaves have turned, the mercury has dipped again, and skiers and snowboarders are more anxious than ever to hit the slopes. But it won’t be like it was. Already ski areas are working on plans that involve reduced lodge capacity, limited day-ticket sales and even policies that call for mask-wearing in lift lines. Camping
DISCOVERY SKI AREA PHOTO
at a cafeteria table for a long lunch with our buddies or sailing through the singles line and hopping on the lift with strangers are yesterday’s reality. What this season will look like, none of us really know. That may prove difficult for some. We’ll fixate on small inconveniences. We’ll grouse about having to boot up at our cars on sub-zero mornings. Some may even allow personal views to turn simple face-covering mandates into lift-side spectacles. We’re navigating a new world, after all, and we doubtless feel some desire to play catch-up. What we can’t do, though, is let COVID-19 take us by surprise as it did last spring. This season gives us, as winter sports enthusiasts, the opportunity to prove both on and off the mountain that we’re not just in it for personal thrill. If we bundle up, use our wits and watch out for each other, maybe we won’t have to look back on another day of so-so snow conditions and think, “Was that really the end?” n
OCTOBER 2020 SNOWLANDER 33
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TIMELESS TAKES A UI production of The Revolutionists heads to Zoom and tackles equality issues in a play set during the French Revolution BY DAN NAILEN
laywright Lauren Gunderson’s The Revolutionists offers a lot of fun challenges for any theater group that takes it on. It’s set during France’s Reign of Terror (1793-94) and features four (seemingly) wildly different women, thus offering myriad costume options. Chopping guillotines and raucous rebels are pretty prevalent, giving the sound folks some work. The action moves from a secretive playwright’s lair to a prison cell to a courtroom to that guillotine and beyond, allowing a creative set designer to run wild. And Gunderson writes her play in such a way that it tackles timeless issues and mixes in plenty of modernsounding American dialogue despite its French Revolution setting, giving a director ample opportunities to creatively express the show’s ideas. Of course, when a pandemic rampages across the globe as you’re trying to put on a show like The Revolutionists, what were fun challenges become production necessities. And so it goes for the University of Idaho theater department’s take on The Revolutionists opening, via Zoom, Oct. 23. “Expressiveness in the face is very key. Eye focus is very key,” says director Carly McMinn of taking the show’s performers off stage and onto webcams. “We do have them moving around a little bit. There’s things like pacing that work really well on camera. I think Olympe falls out of her chair at one point, which is really funny. There’s hiding that goes on around the camera. So there’s different things that we’ve kind of figured out you can do to kind of give off the same objectives we would have had if we could have staged it fully.”
underson’s wordplay for her characters makes The Revolutionists entertaining just to read, and a Zoom production might actually succeed in focusing the audience even more on her stinging one-liners and passionate speeches than they might during a staged production. But the UI production is going to be anything but barebones; McMinn says the members of her two all-female casts (one made up of upperclassmen and grad students, the other younger students) will be in costume from head to toe to help them inhabit their characters (although she does note there will be an emphasis on on-camera accessories). There will also be props used and some background set pieces in the four separate rooms where the show’s actors will each be working with university-provided computers, cameras and lights. ...continued on next page
The Revolutionists puts four strong women front and center. BRINDLE BRUNDAGE ILLUSTRATION
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 35
CULTURE | THEATER it looks like you’re looking at that person. There’s a lot of peripheral vision, and trusting your scene partner and knowing your scene partner and being friends with your scene partner outside of the show, so you can just have that connection.”
“TIMELESS TAKES,” CONTINUED... Stage design is not an afterthought even though the online audience will obviously be focused on the characters’ faces for the most part. The gist of The Revolutionists is this: Four women caught up in the French Revolution converge at the home of one Olympe De Gouges, an activist and playwright struggling to pen something important about the role of women in a revolution. Early on, she’s joined by Marianne Angelle (a Black woman fighting to free Haiti from French rule), Marie-Antoinette (the former queen) and Charlotte Corday (a political assassin). Each of the visitors could use Olympe’s help in one way or another, whether it be penning political pamphlets (Marianne), writing a perfect line to assassinate someone (Charlotte) or improving her image (Marie). There’s a play-within-aplay aspect here, but Gunderson’s script makes ample fun of that trope while also using it effectively, and the four characters volley dialogue tackling feminism, art, power and violence, often with a gut-laugh punctuating their exchanges (at least for me). Zoom won’t change that. “I got handed the script in the spring, I read it, and I immediately fell in love with the show,” says McMinn, a UI MFA candidate in directing. “That doesn’t usually happen with me. … What really drew me in was, although it’s a period piece, and has such strong foundations in history, the approachability of the text — especially talking about some really tough themes and conflicts that evidently seem to last centuries — was really awesome. It’s fun and playful and comedic, but also quite serious and powerful.” Although she’s also an MFA candidate in directing, it didn’t take much arm-twisting to get KT Turner to return to acting to take on the role of Marianne. She was al-
T Carly McMinn (left) directs, and KT Turner plays Marianne. ready a huge fan of Gunderson’s work (“I’m originally a biologist and she writes a lot about scientists”), and when she read The Revolutionists and saw the issues it addresses in such a fresh way, Turner knew she wanted in. “It’s so timely and so unique,” Turner says. “These are issues that women have been facing for such a long time. At times, I’m like, ‘Are we talking about the French Revolution or are we talking about now?’ Which is really magical for me. I have a real connection with my character.” Connecting with the character you’re playing is one thing. Connecting with actors through a screen instead of on stage is a whole new challenge that came with the pandemic forcing the show online. The auditions and every rehearsal for the show have been done on Zoom. And connecting with an audience that’s also online, that you can’t see or hear, adds a whole other layer. “This medium, it’s odd because you’re still trying to make those connections with the people [i.e., castmates] that are on the screen,” Turner says. “But you’re also trying to make sure that you’re looking at the camera, so
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he lack of a live audience led McMinn to encourage her cast to laugh at each other, and themselves, as the show unfolds, since they won’t hear the audience laughing at Gunderson’s lines. Turner says the lack of a live audience is actually freeing in a way as a performer: “I usually get super nervous, but I can’t see them, so I’m just excited.” While the comedy definitely helps The Revolutionists get its messages across, there’s no question those messages take center stage through the four characters. “Each of the characters are representing different waves of American feminist movements for me,” McMinn says, noting that she really emphasizes the third wave in the character of Charlotte in this show. “The early ’90s is when the term ‘intersectionality’ was coined, and the understanding that oppression has layers. … That’s something this play really talks about, that yes, all women are struggling for equal treatment. And even when we feel like we’re making progress in our fight for equality, we actually don’t get it. We get some changes, but the fight just evolves. “Until we liberate the people at the bottom of the oppression ladder, then the rest of us further up aren’t free, either.” n The Revolutionists • via Zoom Oct. 23-24, 30-31 at 6 pm • $5 • Oct. 24-25, Oct. 31-Nov. 1 at 2 pm • Pay what you can • uidaho.edu/class/theatre/productionsand-events
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36 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
CULTURE | DIGEST
GOING FOR GOLD Winning any medal at the Great American Beer Festival is a big deal. The Denver event is one of the most prestigious beer-judging competitions in the world. An even bigger deal is winning gold in one of the most coveted categories. Last Friday, Perry Street Brewing and its flagship IPA accomplished just that. The modest South Perry brewery took the highest medal out of 355 entries for American-style IPA. The last Pacific Northwest brewery to do the same was Seattle’s Georgetown Brewing when Bodhizafa won in 2016. Coincidentally, Perry Street also won gold that year in the Session Beer category for its local-favorite Session IPL. (DEREK HARRISON)
Election Movie Night
BY SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL
aybe you want to get in the mood to stand up against what’s wrong, or be reminded of how one person’s bravery can change another’s life. Or maybe you just want a distraction from the current political climate. Whatever your reason, it’s a season for politically minded movies. Here are a few recommendations that will get you fired up, hopefully for the right reasons. MR. SMITH GOES TO WASHINGTON (1939) Before you got to see how one man could make a difference in It’s a Wonderful Life, there was a different Jimmy Stewart film showing one man’s role in standing against a powerful political machine. In Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Stewart goes up against corrupt politicians and that most controversial chamber of Congress: the Senate. With maybe the most famous portrayal of a filibuster, the movie centers on calling out corruption and standing up for your country in the name of all that is good.
THE BUZZ BIN 12 ANGRY MEN (1957) The American criminal justice system purports to require proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. In 12 Angry Men, the question of reasonable doubt is explored at length, as a jury is asked to decide whether to convict a teenager with murdering his father, a crime punishable by death. What happens when one juror demands the “peers” thoughtfully argue the facts of the case rather than rush to judgment so they can leave? Is it odd someone would have trouble recalling every detail of what they did a week ago? Could that neighbor truly have seen what she thought she saw? Is there doubt he did it?
THIS WEEK’S PLAYLIST Some noteworthy new music hits online and in stores Oct. 23. To wit: BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN, Letter to You. Back with the E Street Band, making good use of his pandemic downtime. JEFF TWEEDY, Love Is the King. The Wilco leader’s pandemic project leans on country and folk. LAURA VEIRS, My Echo. The killer singer-songwriter is joined by My Morning Jacket’s Jim James, M.Ward and others on her latest. (DAN NAILEN)
ALL THE PRESIDENT’S MEN (1976) All the President’s Men (pictured) shows one of the most infamous real-life examples of corruption in the executive branch with the story of the Watergate scandal. From its start as a seemingly small break-in to the uncovering of secret recordings, the film shows the bravery of journalists Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward as they uncover the truth and write about a corrupt president even as he’s being sworn in for a second term. GOOD NIGHT, AND GOOD LUCK (2005) Those unfamiliar with the work of Edward R. Murrow, regionally famous as a graduate of Washington State University (Washington State College back then), can get a glimpse into his no-BS broadcast style in Good Night, and Good Luck. Though Murrow made his name reporting in wartime Europe, when he returned, he hit hard against the Red Scare and McCarthyism, lambasting Sen. Joseph McCarthy. Standing up against the fear-mongering politics of the day isn’t always popular, but many journalists continue to see that as essential work. n
BLESSING OF LOW EXPECTATIONS Considering the new Apple TV series Ted Lasso was spun out of a character designed for NBC commercials, you could say I was skeptical. But damned if I didn’t fall willing victim to Jason Sudeikis’ charms as an American good-hearted rube of a football coach hired to coach a British soccer team by a vindictive divorcee trying to destroy her ex’s beloved squad. From that set-up, Ted Lasso evolves into a genuinely heartwarming sitcom with a crew of well-formed characters, from aging players to shy trainers to, especially, Juno Temple as a model and player girlfriend who is much deeper (and much more hilarious) than that description might indicate. (DAN NAILEN)
IN AMERICA Yaa Gyasi’s acclaimed debut novel Homegoing spanned several continents and multiple generations in the lives of an African family. Her recent follow-up, Transcendent Kingdom, is more narrow but similarly concerned with generational trauma and the immigrant experience, focused on a 20-something neuroscientist named Gifty and her ailing Ghanaian mother. As Gifty works through her abandonment by her father and her older brother’s death by heroin overdose, she’s also reconciling her faith in science with her own religious devotion, which are often at odds with one another. Gyasi’s terse but lyrical prose and sharp instincts about human nature make this a fascinating and moving read. (NATHAN WEINBENDER)
NEW BE-GIN-INGS A fixture of the Pacific Northwest since 1878, Rainier Brewing Co. is making its first foray into distilling to create the new Rainier Mountain Fresh Gin. Crafted in Seattle, the crisp, 80-proof gin can be found on local liquor shelves and is already stocked at numerous Spokane-area bars, including T’s Lounge on Monroe and the Saranac Public House downtown. With notes of huckleberry, spruce and juniper, inspired by the landscape of its namesake, Mount Rainier, the spirit is fresh and light and pairs well with bright, tart fruit juices like grapefruit and lime. (CHEY SCOTT)
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 37
Shaarique Qureshi has expanded his No NAANsense Indian food business through delivery during the pandemic.
YOUNG KWAK PHOTO
THE FUTURE OF FOOD Pop-up food vendors are on the rise, offering low overhead for businesses selling meals exclusively for delivery or takeout BY CHEY SCOTT
ven before COVID-19 changed life as we know it, the dining industry was already in the midst of a major, ongoing shift. Pop-up kitchens across the U.S., and here in the Inland Northwest, are rapidly becoming the home base for many food purveyors looking to get started in an industry known for its prohibitively high startup and overhead costs, from rent to labor to food. Often referred to as “ghost” kitchens or digital kitchens for their lack of a visible storefront, counter or dining room, these operations typically offer shared commercial kitchens or catering spaces where users rent by the hour or on a contract basis. In some major U.S. cities, rentable shipping container-sized pods and mobile units are also part of the ghost kitchen industry. Though its beginnings predate the pandemic, the evolution also happens to harmoniously mesh with how restaurants are now reaching customers via delivery and carryout. For Shaarique Qureshi of Spokane-based No NAANsense, the transition from where he’d typically sell his scratch-made Indian food — at farmers markets and pop-ups at local breweries — to delivery from a commercial kitchen both saved and boosted his business after restrictions on public gatherings began. “When the pandemic hit, delivery picked up quite a bit and we started doing a lot better with deliveries,”
38 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
Qureshi says. “But we also used to do a lot of one-day events and all those major events were canceled, so that took a hit.” Instead of focusing on the in-person sales that gave No NAANsense its start in 2019, initially offering Indianinspired naan pizzas, Qureshi now offers his weekly menu solely for contactless delivery, Monday through Friday. Customers can order online at nonaansensespokane.com or through the business’s social media pages, with delivery available at no cost to locations within five miles of downtown Spokane, and for 50 cents per mile beyond that. “It’s a full meal, and unique every time,” says Qureshi, who learned to cook at his family’s restaurants in Mumbai before moving to Spokane in 2015. “Our most popular boxes are curry boxes like butter chicken. We are also playing with fusions, so last week was a quesadilla with keema masala ground beef.” No NAANsense, along with many other fledgling food makers, operates out of Kitchen Spokane’s commercial space inside the NorthTown Mall.
itchen Spokane is a locally owned nonprofit venture with six commercial kitchens for rent across the Inland Northwest. Two new locations are currently under construction, one inside Coeur d’Alene’s Silver Lake Mall, and another that will soon be Kitchen
Spokane’s second location in the Spokane Valley Mall, says Executive Director Jayme Cozzetto. Although Cozzetto says Kitchen Spokane’s typical summer usage is down this year compared to last — a result of so many event-based food vendors having their summer schedules canceled — he expects demand for communal cooking spaces to pick up again and see consistent, long-term growth even after the pandemic subsides. “We’re probably growing 18 percent a year,” he notes. “Something I didn’t expect is that two, maybe three, months into COVID we saw some people thriving and growing, and it was people doing home meal prep, things that were catered to the home audience and not the retail audience.” Currently, Cozzetto says the business has 95 active clients across its six locations, ranging from local food trucks that use its spaces for ingredient prep and food storage to small-batch producers making items for retail sale, as well as hot food vendors like No NAANsense and its counterparts, including Lumpia Loca, operating from Kitchen Spokane’s Spokane Valley Mall spot. Rene Moya launched the Filipino-focused venture in mid-May, transitioning from a career in construction to make food from his wife Mayumi’s home country and that he learned to cook from his mother-in-law. “I put my twist on it as far as what I know personally, but I still keep it authentic,” Moya says. “At first, as a joke, we thought ‘Let’s make some extra money and put our food on Facebook and see if anyone would like any.’ It really happened so fast; I stopped construction and started making food. Our goal in general is to own our own spot one day.” ...continued on page 40
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OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 39
FOOD | TO-GO “THE FUTURE OF FOOD,” CONTINUED...
Last Days of Pompeii Wednesday, October 28, 6:30 pm A compelling virtual experience ﬁlmed in the last days of Pompeii: The Immortal City at the MAC.
plus Italian wine and Pompeii $50 event bread from The Grain Shed All proceeds beneﬁt the MAC
register now at northwestmuseum.org.
ADVANCING NEUROSCIENCE RESEARCH IN THE INLAND NORTHWEST AND AROUND THE WORLD
Moya takes preorders for pickup from the Valley Mall food court’s parking lot three days a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday), offering pork lumpia rolls, banana-filled dessert lumpia and sides of traditional Filipino pancit noodles and garlic-seasoned jasmine rice. All ordering is done through Facebook (facebook. com/LumpiaLoca) or text. Social media platforms are essential marketing tools leading to Lumpia Loca’s rapid growth so far this year, as well as for several other local pop-up food vendors.
y far, the two main drivers of growth for Dani Lundquist’s vegan salad delivery business LucidRoots are Facebook and Instagram, and it’s been that way since she started selling food to the public back in 2015. Lundquist is getting ready to launch a website for customers in North Idaho to order LucidRoots’ flavor-rich and nutrientpacked salads for delivery right to their doorstep. Home dropoffs make up about 75 percent of the company’s typical average of 100 orders per week. “My business has always been on Facebook and Instagram. Without those, I don’t think I ever would have grown the way I have,” Lundquist says. “I really say that a lot of the reason I have such loyal customers is that I have spoken directly to them the entire time. Every time they order, I talk to them.” LucidRoots, which operates from a commercial kitchen in Post Falls, has seen about 30 percent sales growth each year since launching. Lundquist estimates she’s already surpassed that rate this year due to COVID and the subsequent increased demand for ready-to-eat delivery meals. In addition to direct sales, LucidRoots is also a regular summer vendor at four area farmers markets. This year Lundquist launched a second, related business called Hazy Petals, selling fresh-grilled falafel sandwiches at those same markets; two in Coeur d’Alene, and in Liberty Lake and Kendall Yards. “As a young entrepreneur, I really think that doing these online orders and delivery allows us to have a place where we can put our products out to the world,” she says. “Not everyone gets a milliondollar restaurant and investors backing us. Instead of jumping into a food truck right away that costs $30,000 or more, we can prove concepts with farmers markets and delivery with just $1,000.”
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aking deliveries from a centrally located commercial kitchen is also quickly proving successful for yet another new Spokane food startup, Breauxdoo Bakery. Launched by owner Gage Lang in late May, Breauxdoo Bakery has already seen demand for its late-night menu of freshbaked cookies and cakes skyrocket, enough so to expand operation from three to six days a week. As of this month, the bakery is now open Tuesday through Thursday from 7 pm to midnight, and until 1 am on Friday and Saturday nights, Lang says. “We’ve been super slammed and busy. It’s been pretty consistent daily of 75 to 100 orders,” he says. “I think the whole reason for that is social media, and it’s so easy to order and have it right to your door. You don’t even have to say hi to us. And we’re the first dessert delivery to hit Spokane that you can order late night.” Breauxdoo Bakery is based out of River City Kitchen in downtown Spokane’s Intermodal Center. Customers can order at breauxdoobakery.com for delivery or pickup. Lang says he spent two years perfecting his cookie recipes for specialty flavors like red velvet, cherry chip and funfetti before launching Breauxdoo, which he has plans to transition into a permanent storefront as soon as next year, eventually expanding with franchise locations. Over time the bakery’s menu will grow, too, with the goal of creating “a funky American bakery” where customers can even get treats like warm apple pie and ice cream delivered to their door. “I think in the beginning, I felt like I must be crazy for starting this and I felt like I was the only one doing it,” Lang says. “Then a couple weeks in, I realized that everyone was starting these style businesses and working from commissary-style kitchens. It’s rewriting the way we look at food and order food.” n
FROM THEIR KITCHEN TO YOURS More locally owned “digital kitchens” to try:
Half-pound, authentic Mexican tamales from owner Enrique Mariscal. Preorder at tamaleboxspokane.com for pickup at South Perry Thursday Market and Fairwood Farmers Market.
Cajun and New Orleans-style food from owner Jae Marie BantzMullen. Order at ohso504nola. square.site for delivery or pickup, Fri-Sun.
Vegan food and desserts from owner Samantha Falcone. Order at botanicalbites.co for delivery or pickup at NorthTown Mall, Fri-Sun from 3-7 pm.
Custom New York-style layer cheesecakes by Bo Phillips. Order at facebook.com/PhillipsCheesecake.
SPOKANE SALAD DELIVERY
Fresh entree-sized salads by Ryan Willcockson. Order for delivery or pickup at spokanesalads.com, available Mon-Fri.
FEAST WORLD KITCHEN
Authentic world cuisine prepared by rotating, former refugee chefs. Order for pickup at feastworldkitchen.org, available Thu-Sun from 4-6:30 pm.
Mondays 7:30 pm g up: Comin ll ngerso Karli I
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 41
David Byrne continues to change the form of the concert film in a new documentary of his Broadway show BY NATHAN WEINBENDER
984’s Stop Making Sense begins with Talking Heads ish sense of humor who’s playing around with form. In frontman David Byrne walking out onto the stage this new film, he’s a cultural institution, a living monuwith nothing but an acoustic guitar and a boombox. ment to the New York post-punk scene he helped estabHe hits play and performs a jittery, stripped-down version lish, and yet he’s still finding new ways to top himself. of “Psycho Killer,” before being joined by bassist Tina The show is set on a sparse stage — there’s no Weymouth for a spare duet of “Heaven.” Then drummer equipment or elaborate decoration, merely a chainmailChris Frantz comes out, then keyboardist and guitarlike curtain around the perimeter that performers will ist Jerry Harrison, and then the backup singers and the occasionally disappear through. Byrne and his 11-person auxiliary percussionists, and by the fifth backing band, barefoot and adorned or sixth song, the stage is overflowing in matching grey suits, wear marchAMERICAN UTOPIA ing band-style instruments so they can with performers. Not Rated Byrne envisioned Stop Making Sense move around freely in drumline formaas something of a conceptual deconstruc- Directed by Spike Lee tions. They blaze through a 21-song set, Streaming on HBO Max tion of the moving parts that make a making detours through iconic Talking concert work, deliberately laying bare the Heads songs like “Once in a Lifetime” behind-the-scenes mechanisms that have to click together and “Burning Down the House.” There’s the occasional like cogs in a machine. He treats the rock concert as an chiaroscuro lighting cue or a strobe effect to emphasize interactive installation: It’s as much about the Talking changes in the music, but for the most part, this is a Heads’ songs as it is about movement, color, patterns and black-box experience. the sheer kinetic energy of its performers. The show is a perpetual motion machine: It’s never American Utopia, the new HBO Max documentary of not doing something. The musicians always seem to be Byrne’s recent Broadway residency, continues this idea mutating into a new abstract shape, a single-cell organof rock concert as art piece, and in its best moments it’s ism that’s perpetually expanding and contracting. Byrne nearly as radical and as gripping as Stop Making Sense. is usually flanked by two backup singers who employ a This is high praise, since that earlier film, directed by the lithe, balletic choreography that often resembles interprelate Jonathan Demme, is arguably the greatest concert tive dance or particularly flowery ASL. The camera is film of them all. mostly at the eye level of the audience, but we sometimes But Byrne, now in his late 60s, is in top form here, get angles looking down at the stage from above so we and watching American Utopia back-to-back with Stop Makcan admire the complexity of their movements. You get a ing Sense, it’s interesting to see how his poise has changed. sense that the show itself was designed for the inevitable In the 1984 film, he’s an ambitious upstart with an impconcert film that would be made of it.
42 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
American Utopia was directed by Spike Lee, and it’s his second great achievement this year after his Netflix war film Da 5 Bloods. As Jonathan Demme did in Stop Making Sense, Lee captures the immediacy and electricity of live music, of being in this theater with these performers at this exact time. Byrne’s artistic vision is obviously at the forefront of the film, but Lee’s directorial hand becomes apparent in the film’s most remarkable performance, a cover of Janelle Monae’s “Hell You Talmbout.” The song, which takes the form of a funereal chant, addresses police brutality toward Black people, calling out the victims by name. Lee intercuts this footage with blown-up photos of the men and women addressed in the lyrics, his camera pushing in on their faces, and it’s one of the great achievements of his career. The design of American Utopia itself — sleek, grey, minimalist, well-calibrated — reflects the robotic remove of Byrne’s lyrics, and the odd ways that he has always related to technology, romance, corporate culture and basic social routines. And yet for FOR MORE all the meticulous control that Find our list of notable went into it, American Utopia live music documentaries is hardly lifeless. It’s bursting at Inlander.com/music. with invention and energy and spontaneity and goodwill, and when Byrne talks about the importance of connection — about the connection between creativity and expression, the connection firing between the synapses in our brains, the connection between performer and audience — it’s not just a nifty thematic device. He really means it. n
keep washing your hands. (it's icky not to!)
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 43
Keep Music Live hopes to help small Washington venues like Lucky You Lounge survive the coronavirus pandemic. YOUNG KWAK PHOTO
Save Our Stages Keep Music Live is a new fundraising initiative aiming to protect Washington’s indie venues
s pandemic closures stretch into their seventh month, one question keeps coming up in regards to the arts scene: What’s going to happen to live music? With national tours at a standstill, local concerts on hold and no major federal relief in sight, most small music venues are perilously close to shutting their doors forever. Keep Music Live is a new COVID-19 relief effort that’s hoping to prevent that alarming prospect from becoming a reality, targeting Washington venues and nightclubs with capacities of fewer than 1,000 people. The group was formed earlier this year by a coalition of venue owners, musicians and arts organization stalwarts, and amongst its chairs is rapper and Seattle native Sir Mix-A-Lot. Ginger Ewing, co-founder of Spokane arts organization Terrain, is on Keep Music Live’s board of directors, and she says the group approached her to expand its reach beyond the music hubs of Seattle and Bellingham. “It was music lovers and music venues coming together to try to figure out a way to save small independent music venues,” Ewing tells the Inlander. “As someone who runs an arts nonprofit here in town and has a close relationship with venue owners, it was a no-brainer for me to join the board.” Keep Music Live isn’t the first initiative of its kind to spring up mid-pandemic, and other like-minded organizations like the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) and the Washington Nightlife Music Association (WANMA) are still campaigning for the future of venues and lobbying the federal government for funds. Although
44 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
BY NATHAN WEINBENDER bills focused specifically on theatrical and musical venues have been introduced to Congress — including the Restart Act and the Save Our Stages Act — gridlock over stimulus negations have held them up. But venue owners are becoming more aware that they can’t sit around and wait much longer, which has inspired grassroots initiatives to carry the torch. Keep Music Live is still in its nascent phases, and it just began its first social media push this week. The group is aiming to raise $10 million, which will fund grants for indie venues to stay afloat during the pandemic. “PPP [the Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses] has been saving a lot of restaurants,” Ewing says, “but it’s not a good fit for a music venue, because they can’t bring their staff back on. They’re going to be forced to close until what sounds like 2022.” Karli Ingersoll, owner of Lucky You Lounge, has also been involved with Keep Music Live, and she acknowledges that her own venue could benefit from the initiative. “There’s been this realization that it doesn’t look like we’re going to get any level of federal funding,” Ingersoll says. “We want to save our music venue, so we have to kind of go for more grassroots-oriented fundraising efforts.” The projections for music venues are dire everywhere. A recent survey conducted by NIVA found that 90 percent of indie venues in America could cease to exist by 2021, barring some kind of financial assistance. Spokane has already seen the closure of all-ages venue the Pin in August, its owners citing the current economic
climate, and more could follow. And it’s not just tiny clubs: Ingersoll points to Neumos, a well-established venue in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle, as a beloved indie mainstay that won’t be able to survive with its high monthly rent much longer. “That area of Capitol Hill is high traffic because of live music,” she says. “It has made it so those other businesses can be successful because it’s bringing people into that neighborhood several nights a week.” Ewing says the argument for keeping concert venues alive is multi-tiered. Concerts draw crowds (that is, of course, the main reason they’re closed right now), which in turn bolsters the nightlife scene, with nearby restaurants and bars benefitting from an influx of people looking for food and drinks before and after concerts. A healthy live music scene is also a boon for tourism, she says, as touring bands draw people from neighboring cities. But there’s also that more intangible, nebulous benefit to seeing live music — the cathartic emotional release, the sense of community, the spark of creativity. “It’s all those aspects — from the visitors bureau perspective, from an economic perspective, from a spiritual perspective,” Ewing says. “They’re the heart and the soul of our communities.” If we let our indie venues simply close down, Ewing says, “they won’t be easily replaceable.” n Read more about the initiative and donate at keepmusiclivewa.com.
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 45
FILM GOLD DUST WOMAN
With her signature Fleetwood Mac ballad “Dreams” at the center of a viral TikTok clip and a new live album on record store shelves, Stevie Nicks is as relevant as she’s been in years. That live album was recorded during the singer-songwriter’s recent 24 Karat Gold tour, which spanned nearly 70 individual performances and featured a setlist of her biggest solo hits with a handful of iconic Mac tracks sprinkled in. An accompanying concert film is also scheduled to hit drive-in screens around the country, including the one recently installed at the Spokane County Fairgrounds, so you can both hear and see all of those classic songs, from “Rhiannon” to “Leather and Lace” to “Edge of Seventeen.” Ticket prices are per carload, and only six people are allowed in each car. — NATHAN WEINBENDER Stevie Nicks: 24 Karat Gold Drive-In Concert • Sun, Oct. 25 at 7:30 pm • $20-$75 • Spokane County Fairgrounds • 404 N. Havana St. • spokanedrive.in
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46 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
Bowser’s Castle short film
WORDS PROUDLY CONFOUNDING
Three fierce, feminist, female writers of the Pacific Northwest are joining forces for this virtual reading and discussion hosted by the locally owned Wishing Tree Books in Spokane’s South Perry District. While celebrating the release of Seattle-based author and journalist Kristen Millares Young’s highly praised debut novel Subduction, Moscow’s Alexandra Teague and Spokane’s Sharma Shields also share their respective poetry and prose. The trio collectively addresses the challenges of being women writers who defy patriarchal expectations in their work. Subduction is set on Makah Nation land in Washington state’s remote Neah Bay and centers around the convergence of two characters both grieving profound personal losses while seeking solace in a sense of belonging. — CHEY SCOTT Women Who Confound Expectations • Sat, Oct. 24 at 7 pm • Online; hosted by Wishing Tree Books • Details at facebook.com/ WishingTreeBooks
FESTIVAL VIRTUAL SWEETGRASS
For the fifth year in a row, the One Heart Native Arts and Film Festival brings together Indigenous filmmakers, musicians and other artists to celebrate the resilience and vitality of Native culture. This year focuses on the intertwined concepts of sovereignty, storytelling and spirituality, with each of the festival’s three events highlighting one theme. While the three-day festival kicked off last week with a Facebook Live acting workshop hosted by Lily Gladstone (Kainai, Amskapi Piikani, Nimii’puu), there’s still time to catch the next two. On Oct. 23, tune in to the annual short films program featuring original work by regional Native filmmakers. Afterward, connect with the creators during a livestreamed discussion. Closing out the festival Oct. 30 is a virtual concert featuring Tony Louie (Colville Confederated Tribes), Shanon Hale (Three Affiliated Tribes), Julia Keefe (Nez Perce), and Daisy Chain (Haida/ Pacific Islander). — LAUREN GILMORE Fifth Annual One Heart Native Arts and Film Festival • Fri, Oct. 23 and 30 at 7 pm • Free • Online; details at oneheartfestival.org and facebook.com/NativeFestOneHeart
What can you give this week? VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES Food Bank Helpers Wanted - GREENHOUSE
MUSIC PUTTING ON THE MILES
Artistic Director Zuill Bailey launched Northwest BachFest’s Across the Miles program over the summer, delivering stirring performances to remote classical fans. Now there’s a new season ready, starting Friday with The Intimate World of Cole Porter and featuring Rob Kapilow of What Makes It Great? fame exploring the legacy of Porter’s music. Future shows include celebrations of Beethoven and Chopin, and guest artists from across the country. Each gig is available for four days on a private YouTube channel, and all delivered in hi-def video and hi-fidelity sound. Included with each ticket is access to Bailey’s Happy Hour chats with the performers, so you can pour a glass and enjoy some class acts from your own couch. — DAN NAILEN Northwest BachFest Across the Miles: The Intimate World of Cole Porter • Fri-Mon, Oct. 23-26 • $20/household or $100 for six-show series • Online; details at nwbachfest.com
The Greenhouse Community Center in Deer Park needs volunteers to help restock food pantry shelves and assist clients with shopping or checking out their groceries Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8:45 am-12:30 pm. Volunteer applications can be found on Greenhouse’s website. greenhousedp.com
Temperature Takers Needed - VITALANT Blood donations save lives, and now all blood and platelet donations are tested for COVID-19-antibodies, which can potentially help people fighting the virus. Help our community and Vitalant by taking potential donors’ temperatures upon arrival. You can email Vitalant for a donor application firstname.lastname@example.org, call 232-441 or apply online. Must be 16+ years of age. vitalant.org
EVENTS/BENEFITS Spoken River - SPOKANE RIVERKEEPER This virtual event, called the Spoken River, features live stories of the connections between the watershed’s individuals, communities and the Spokane River. You will hear compelling stories of river connection and inspiration from authors, artists, community members and others in their own words with their own passion. Jess Walter is one of the featured presenters and will read a selection from his new book The Cold Millions. This event financially supports Spokane Riverkeeper, which works to defend clean water in our basin’s rivers. Oct. 28, 7-8 pm; registration is free online. spokaneriverkeeper.org
Eye Contact Homeless Art Exhibit and Fundraiser -
VOLUNTEERS OF AMERICA
THEATER REGIONAL VOICES
The pandemic may have left local stages dark, but it can’t keep the region’s playwrights from putting pen to paper or from wanting to see their words come to life. That’s where the Spokane Playwrights Salon comes in. The group is presenting works from five area playwrights, each piece directed by a local director and performed by local actors. The shows range from Bryan Harnetiaux’s Myra, a historical drama involving gender discrimination, to Pam Kingsley’s Finding Mother Courage, a dramatic comedy about aging in the acting world. Playwrights Jean Hardie, Matthew Weaver and Jeremy Urann are also featured. For descriptions of all five shows, visit the event’s Facebook page. The plays will all stream on YouTube beginning Oct. 24, when the link to the channel will appear at the link below and will remain online until Nov. 7. — DAN NAILEN Spokane Playwrights Salonline • Opening Sat, Oct. 24 at 1 pm • Free • Online; details at bit.ly/3o5I4UN
Volunteers of America is excited to share this year’s annual Eye Contact fundraising event. The event will be held virtually on Thursday, Oct. 22, from 6-8 pm live, from the Washington Cracker Company Building’s event center in the Terrain art space. While not quite the same as last year, it will still deliver on the mission to see our neighbors and raise awareness about people experiencing homelessness. The virtual event will include a live art auction, performances, paddle raise and much more. Please join us to raise critical funds to serve our neighbors. Register online. voaspokane.org
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OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 47
lights, high mounted stop lights. If you look around Spokane you can sure tell that Trump’s tax break for the silver spooners worked with all the new Audis, BMWs Porsche, Lexus etc. but not many Chevys Fords or Dodges. Just sayin!
I SAW YOU CUTE DUTCH BROS GIRL I saw that lady throw her card at you after you tried explaining to her that her gift card wouldn’t cover the whole balance. Then I saw you stand up for yourself by telling her she wasn’t getting her drinks. Then I saw you explain all of this to me with the biggest smile (probably) under your mask. As someone that works with customers it brought me great joy to watch an employee stand up for themselves. Also you’re cute, let’s grab lunch. firstname.lastname@example.org
CHEERS THANK YOU FOR JUST BEING A GREAT PERSON Thank you to the super awesome person who found my son’s Star Wars wallet at Northtown!! The look on his face when he realized it was gone about killed me. And after retracing all our steps to no avail was further heartbreaking. But someone pointed us in the right direction and lo and behold, it was there! He never carries his wallet yet alone has cash, but he’s been working hard to earn something nice to buy for family. And to find it with all his hard earned cash was truly awesome. Thank you thank you thank you! CAR BIZ Time for all us drivers to do a walk-around on our cars and check our lights. Head lights, park lights, brake lights, DRL, backup lights, license plate
ARRESTED... ...development. Glad to see she’s not putting up with your version of truth. You’ve been quite less than honest, most of the time she’s given you. We know you’ve been unfaithful. Now, so does she. Work on your “isms” that linger, perniciously. Your maturity needs a catch-up. Aren’t you way past your 40s? Charming, still, but creeping toward that ridiculous “age” that is not a great place for players. Didn’t you say you were single? How convenient. Hoping you realize that loyalty is freedom. Devotion, divine. PAY IT FORWARD A few years ago I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes along with advanced pulmonary hypertension. Needless to say I physically was unable to continue working. Sharing my misfortune with Dan and Janet, former site property managers at CCEB, Dan reached in his pocket and pulled out his cash and without counting it put it in my palm. Turns out it was close to $600. I haven’t seen them since, and would very much like to see them again. I don’t know their last name. but I’m sure he knows where I live. CAN’T WE JUST GET ALONG? People! What’s becoming of our city? Covid has fatigued and strained us all, and perhaps left you scared and angry, but that’s not what is poisoning us. Now you hate your neighbors because of a yard sign. You disparage others for simply waving the nation’s flag. You aren’t even seeing black and white now, it’s all red, the color of blood and hate. “Yay for my side, the rest of you go to hell!” Sure, Orange Man Bad and Feeble Old Guy corrupt, but isn’t your life bigger than politics and candidates? Wake up! You are being played. Go watch “The Social Dilemma” – you are being manipulated and deceived, with your consent! Go watch “Irresistible” – the political game (and it IS a game) is rife with dark money and corruption. Someone, somewhere, is getting rich off all this but certainly not you! But ask yourself, who really profits if we
destroy and devour each other? Our real enemies, like Communist China, are hoping for the eventual failure of the United States, but right now they only have to
INLAND EMPIRE A-LIST PARTIES One of the greatest moments of Spokane, Washington: U.S.A. is when Mark Few marched our Zags into the history books.
FLAG PROTOCOL Jeers to the T supporters who fly a Trump flag above the U.S. flag. The American flag protocol is that the American flags flies above lesser
Mr. Few should be treated like a Supreme Court Justice, tenured for life. He is so serious, stern yet talented... He not only brings out the best in his players — he also brings out the best in the student body, and others.
wait for our system to collapse because we’re too busy arguing about politics to realize we’re doing the job for them. Come on, man! Return to first principles, let go of petty personal agendas, and try a little kindness. You still have a life to live no matter who’s in office next year. And the real enemy is not your neighbor, but the one who wants your soul – the one who comes only to steal and kill and destroy. As my grandmother used to say, “Y’all need Jesus.” We all do. SPOKANE ROAD WORK Thank you, road construction workers, you hardhat-wearing asphalt warriors, for your steadfast efforts in what may be a largely thankless job. It’s not your fault city planners could not plan our road repairs more efficiently and effectively to keep traffic levels flowing while you give us smooth streets. You’re out there in the heat and cold, before sunup and after sundown, enduring the hard physical labor it takes to repair years of wear and neglect. Shame on the drivers who take out their frustrations on your foremen and crews. If we will all just relax, allow more time for the inevitable detours, and be patient, when these jobs wrap up and we are enjoying the smooth new pavement, all those temporary headaches will be but a flash of memory. Detours may be necessary for some weeks but the benefits will last for years. So thank you, some of us really appreciate what you do. And be careful out there!
We all remember where we were that day, aka which party. Team Zag will be strong for 100 years thanks to his level of excitement and engagement(s). Who doesn’t love Mark Few? I was one at a multiplayer Zag event and it was as loud as an old Stihl chainsaw. Mr. Few should be treated like a Supreme Court Justice, tenured for life. He is so serious, stern yet talented... He not only brings out the best in his players — he also brings out the best in the student body, and others. Bravo Zag nation — you did it! What an education in class and structure of how to win, win, WIN!! P.S.: according to the internet, thx: Mr. Thayne McCulloh.
JEERS COVID PETRI DISH Jeers to a South Hill fitness center. It is obvious you do not embrace the danger of COVID and are placing profits over the well being of our community. Yes you clean the equipment but the vast majority of transmission is via the mouth. And there are more heavily breathing, unmasked mouths in your facility now then pre-pandemic. And those mouths primarily belong to the younger selfish people who are driving the covid numbers higher. Your gym is probably one of the top sources of the virus spread in our area. Sure would be nice to get our kids back in school, but that is not going to happen because of irresponsible businesses like yours.
flags. Just goes to show those supporters put T above our country. Shame on them!
MAGA MASK MORONS Look... I know your “Glorious Leader” and his vice poodle “Fly Boy” have told you COVID-19 is a Democratic hoax. However, there are 220,000 people DEAD and over 8 MILLION infected. If you don’t want to listen to the doctors or the scientists, that’s fine. Call REPUBLICAN Herman Cain. OH wait....he died of COVID-19! Maybe try REPUBLICAN Chris Christie. He lived, but he spent a week in ICU. Or call your fearless leader and he can explain how he received $100,000 in medical treatment, that you paid for and how he is going to make damned sure you won’t be able to receive the same treatment because next month he is going before the SUPREME COURT to cancel the ACA. Good luck MMM, you’re going to need it. n
THIS WEEK'S ANSWERS G O T H
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1. Visit Inlander.com/isawyou by 3 pm Monday. 2. Pick a category (I Saw You, You Saw Me, Cheers or Jeers). 3. Provide basic info: your name and email (so we know you’re real). 4. To connect via I Saw You, provide a non-identifying email to be included with your submission — like “email@example.com,” not “firstname.lastname@example.org.”
COMMUNITY HEALTH PLAN of Washington
Community Health Plan of Washington is an HMO plan with a Medicare contract and a contract with the Washington State Medicaid program. Enrollment in Community Health Plan of Washington depends on contract renewal. Community Health Plan of Washington complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex. ATENCIÓN: si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingüística. Llame al 1-800-942-0247 (TTY: 711). 注意：如果您使用繁體中文，您可以免費 獲得語言援助服務。請致電 1-800-942-0247 (TTY: 711). H5826_MA_175_2021_AEP_Newspaper_Ad_M 48 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
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Advice Goddess HEAVY MENTAL
I’m a woman who recently stopped talking with a guy I’d been seeing because, frankly, I didn’t find him intelligent enough. He is a good guy, but just a little dim for me. When I told my friends this was the reason I ended things, they said it was a bit snobbish. Does this make me an intellectual snob? I get that he has other good qualities, but I just don’t feel like they’re enough. —Nerd Seeking Nerd
Love sometimes requires one to make sacrifices, but these shouldn’t include avoiding any words with more than two syllables. You aren’t alone in wanting a partner with smarts. In 1989, evolutionary psychologist David Buss and his colleagues did a massive study exploring mate preferences, including the desire for an intelligent partner, across 37 cultures (“on six continents and five islands”). Their participant group included Gujarati Indians, Estonians, mainland Chinese, Santa Catarina Brazilians, and South African Zulus. Using such a broad cross-cultural group (rather than just surveying the latest crop of American college undergrads) helps parse which traits might be evolved “human universals,” inherited by humans around the globe, irrespective of culture. Universal human traits -- for example, communicating with language and fear of snakes — evolved to solve recurring problems faced by ancestral humans across continents and over generations, improving our chances of surviving, mating, and, most importantly, passing on our genes. Buss found that for some mate preferences, “cultures varied tremendously.” For example, the Dutch had a “whatevs!” attitude toward whether a partner is a virgin, while people in mainland China, India, and Iran placed a lot of importance on “chastity or virginity” in a partner. There were also strong sex differences in certain mate preferences — even across cultures — for example, with men (on average) “always ... valuing virginity more than women.” This might help a man avoid a hookup-erella and the evolutionary fail of unwittingly investing in a kid who’ll pass on some other dude’s genes. Of course, no woman has to worry her kid isn’t hers (especially not after 26 hours of screaming labor to push it out). There were also some universal mate preferences — across cultures and in both sexes. Buss and his team found that intelligence (as well as kindness and health) were chart-toppers, traits desired by men and women across cultures from Z to Z: from the Zulus to the Croatians in Zagreb. Granted, Buss did this research 30 years ago. Do his findings hold up? They do — according to a survey of 14,000 people in 45 countries published in March of 2020 by evolutionary psychologist Daniel Conroy-Beam and his grad student Kathryn V. Walter, in concert with a huge international team of researchers. They write, “Consistent with Buss (1989), our results showed that health, kindness, and intelligence were highly valued by both men and women” around the world. Why might intelligence in a mate have evolved to be such a strong, culturally universal preference? In research exploring the role of men’s intelligence in heterosexual women’s mate choices, psychologist Mark D. Prokosch and his colleagues explain that “greater intelligence is generally associated with success in a wide variety of circumstances,” most notably, workplace success, leading to higher income. “Selecting a more intelligent mate often provides women with better access to resources and parental investment for offspring.” Additionally, smart-man genes are likely to lead to smarter children, making intelligence attractive as an “overall heritable ... quality.” There’s a widely held myth that romantic partners need to be near doppelgangers v have matching traits and interests — to make it as a couple. This sells memberships to those dating sites promising to ferret out “points of compatibility.” However, research by psychologist Manon van Scheppingen finds that varying, complementing personality traits (such as outgoingness or conscientiousness) in partners often lead to greater relationship satisfaction. That said, it’s reasonable to want a partner with a level of smarts that’s a pretty good match with yours, because, well, a meeting of the minds is a little hard when one mind is tuned into Cold War documentaries while the other is all up in reruns of “Scooby-Doo.” Chances are the notion that you’re a “snob” for wanting an intellectually wellmatched partner is driven in part by others’ fear that they’ll be nixed by potential partners for traits beyond their control. There’s this lovely fiction that “what’s inside is all that matters.” A person’s heart and character are deeply important, but you can’t just decide to have the hots for some Mr. Libido Repellent because he feeds orphaned baby birds with an eyedropper while taking calls for a suicide hotline. Likewise, you can believe all people have innate value and treat them with respect and dignity and still not feel you’re compatible with a partner whose intelligence test results lead to a participation trophy. n
©2020, 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)
Paid for by Friends to Elect Ted Cummings Friends of David Green 13112 E Black Rd PO Box 4002 Chattaroy WA 99003 Paid for bySpokane WA 99220-0002 Friends to Elect Cummings Friends ofParty David Green TedTed & David prefer the by Democratic Paid for 13112 E Black Rd PO Box 4002 Friends to Elect Ted Cummings Friends of David Green Chattaroy WA 99003 Spokane WA 99220-0002 13112 E Black Rd PO OCTOBER Box 4002 22, 2020 INLANDER 49 TedWA & David prefer the Democratic Party Chattaroy 99003 Spokane WA 99220-0002
Washington pot shops sold $1.25 billion worth of cannabis in the 2019 fiscal year.
Record Highs Incredibly, cannabis sales continue their upward trajectory BY WILL MAUPIN
he Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board released retail sales numbers for fiscal year 2019 — July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020 — and the data shows an industry that continues to grow, even faster than before. Last year, the state cracked the $1 billion mark for the first time. This year, it passed $1.25 billion and generated more than $468 million in excise tax. Both of which are record highs.
Compare that with fiscal year 2015 — the legal market’s first — when retail sales were just under $180 million. Each year has seen the state’s market grow compared to the year prior, but the growth rate has steadily dropped. Between years one and two, the market ballooned by 179 percent, but from 2018 to 2019 it grew by just under 8 percent. This year marks the first time the growth rate has gone up year-over-year, with an increase of more than 20 percent statewide, and roughly 25 percent in Spokane County, compared to 2019. Perhaps coincidentally, perhaps not, those numbers line up with the increases local dispensaries saw during the early months of the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown. “Customers have been buying increasing amounts of edibles since March,” Brandon St Germain, district leader at Cannabis & Glass, told the Inlander in July. “Sales on edibles are up over 25 percent since spring.” Growth rate isn’t the only area in which Spokane County outpaces the state as a whole, though. Using the
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50 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
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most recent population estimates from the Census Bureau, Washington’s retail sales numbers average out to $161.03 spent per resident. Spokane County, however, averaged $258.26 spent per resident. That’s the second-highest average in the state behind only Asotin County’s whopping $563.07 spent per resident. Rounding out the top three is Whitman County, at $231.89 spent per resident. Those three counties have wildly disparate demographics but they share one thing in common: geography. All three border Idaho, a state with no legal cannabis market. While the overall growth rate numbers may be an outlier — inflated due to the pandemic — these numbers certainly are not. In 2019 the top three counties in the state were, you guessed it: Asotin, Spokane and Whitman. This pattern holds true to the south as well. In January, a story from the Associated Press went viral for noting that sales in Oregon were 420 percent higher along the Idaho border than in the rest of the state. n
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 five-year sentence and fine of up to $10,000. Transporting marijuana across state lines, like from Washington into Idaho, is a felony under federal law.
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Warning: This product has intoxicating effects & may be habit forming. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, & judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. For use only by adults 21 years or older. Keep out of reach of children.
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WARNING: This product has intoxicating affects and may be habit forming. Smoking is hazardous to your health. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. Should not be used by women that are pregnant or breast feeding. For USE only by adults 21 and older. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination and judgement. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug.
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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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25. Observed 26. Component of an Arnold Palmer 27. Neither’s partner 28. Is grandmotherly, in a way 29. Abbr. in a discount bin
38. Mahershala or Muhammad 39. Awful racket 40 40. “Spring forward” hrs. in NYC 43 45. Ferber and Krabappel 46. Really rankles 47. Grateful? 48. Carrier of sleeping sickness 52. Kuwaiti leader 56 57 58 59 53. “Miami ____” 54. Grandson of Adam and Eve 55. Part to play 56. Bert of “The Wizard of Oz” 57. “Jiminy Christmas!” “NEVERTHELESS” 58. Sport that takes place in a dohyo 59. Something journalists may work on 60. Org. that cleans up oil spills 61. Luau garland 62. EMT’s procedure 35
1. One wearing black eyeliner and ripped jeans, say 2. Anthony’s longtime partner on satellite radio 3. ____ Fleck, banjo virtuoso 4. Furious 5. Non-fuel-efficient vehicle 6. Wisest of the centaurs, in Greek myth 7. That woman’s 8. 2002 Literature Nobelist Kertész 9. Neeson of “Schindler’s List” 10. “____ Club” (#1 hit for 50 Cent) 11. Pan Am rival 12. Fashion item always foung in mid-Manhattan? 13. Mate’s consent 16. Kind of knife in old infomercials 20. “____ get it now!” 23. Jewish campus group 24. Dead Sea Scrolls writer
41. The Pistons, on scoreboards 42. “Grand” or “demi” ballet move 43. Say it isn’t so 44. Spend an overnight overlooking Puget Sound? 49. ____ jokes 50. Doofus 51. “That being said ...” (or this puzzle’s theme) 60. 1960s-’80s Chevrolet coupe utility vehicles 63. Advice to a base runner 64. Beverage originally called Brad’s Drink 65. “Tsk, tsk!” 66. ____ guitar 67. Put back to zero, say 68. Worker in a trauma ward, for short
ACROSS 1. Strive for an epic effect 6. “Four-alarm” food 11. Hip-hop radio/TV host Charlamagne ____ God 14. “Don Giovanni,” e.g. 15. Author of a 1952 novel published in full in Life magazine 17. Mah-jongg pieces 18. Zap 19. Top cowboy? 21. “Well, well, well, whaddya know” 22. “___ Said,” 2019 bestseller on the #MeToo movement 25. Crosby is dressing up for Halloween? 33. Like vino de Rioja 34. Most common commercial name in New York Times crosswords 35. Hit from the ‘60s? 36. Route one decided to take?
30. Adriatic or Aegean 31. Cuomo, for one: Abbr. 32. Small whirlpool 33. Norms: Abbr. 37. Vs.
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 53
COEUR D ’ ALENE
cda4.fun for more events, things to do & places to stay.
SPOOKY SCAVENGER HUNT Fall colors are on full display on the St. Joe in North Idaho
OCTOBER 23 - 25 Set out on a journey throughout Downtown Coeur d’Alene to decode clues, shop and explore by foot! The challenge will send you on adventure through local boutiques, restaurants and coffee shops for the chance to win gift cards to your favorite local spots! All participants are asked to wear a face covering and practice social distancing.
TICKETS C D A D O W N T O W N . C O M / M I C R O - E V E N T- S E R I E S
Splashes of Color
From lake to mountain, be inspired by the colors of fall in and around Coeur d’Alene
oeur d’Alene Lake is stunning in any season, and fall is no exception. The autumnal lake palette is ever-changing — steel blue to sage green, depending on the weather — surrounded by great swaths of reassuring forest green hills. Sunsets glowing orange and purple, while bright red and lime green foliage announces the arrival of fall. It’s enough to make the least artistic amongst us want to grab our coloring kit and sit for a while, maybe with a cup of coffee on the patio at BAKERY BY THE LAKE (bakerybythelake.com), or an adult beverage beside the fire pits at the COEUR D’ALENE RESORT (cdaresort.com). Better yet, head into any number of art galleries downtown, like BLACKWELL GALLERY (blackwellgallerycda.com) or STUDIO 107 (studio107cda.com), to see what local artists can do with the view. For Coeur d’Alene-area artist Jessica Bryant, the region is an endless source of inspiration.
54 INLANDER OCTOBER 22, 2020
“Just last week I was out on the St. Joe, past Avery, and Coeur d’Alene River — the ‘jumping rocks’ area — the Little North Fork and the North Fork,” says Bryant, whose work can be found at THE ART SPIRIT
SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION
GALLERY (theartspiritgallery.com). If you don’t mind driving on gravel roads, Bryant says, in three hours you can drive the whole loop, exiting Interstate 90 at Enaville, driving along the river until Linfor and meandering your way back to town amidst the old roads. “The whole drive is just phenomenal,” says Bryant, a celebrated watercolorist, art teacher and signature member of the Northwest Watercolor Society. Along the way — whether on the highway or off — there are numerous places to pull off and admire the view. Coeur d’Alene’s Old Mission State Park includes the historic CATALDO MISSION and a prime picnic spot (park entry fee: $5/vehicle, parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/parks/ coeur-d-alenes-old-mission). Continue east towards the charming town of Wallace. Now you’re in the bosom of the valley amidst steep hills of evergreen and local lore, so make a day of it and explore shopping and dining. Or, if you’re really after a unique fall vista, check out SILVER STREAK ZIPLINE TOURS (silverstreakziplinetours.com). If you’d like to take in the fall color from
the water, book a SUNDAY CRUISE on the St. Joe River. This six-hour adventure cruises the full length of Lake Coeur d’Alene to the St. Joe River. Watch for elk, deer and birds while you enjoy the full splendor of fall. A buffet lunch is included (cdaresort.com/play/activities/cruises). For two-wheel adventures, bundle up and grab the last bit of fall as you ride the TRAIL OF THE COEUR D’ALENE’S (parksandrecreation.idaho.gov/parks/trail-coeur-dalenes), more than 70 miles of mostly flat, paved asphalt from Mullan to Plummer. That’s where you might end your excursion at the COEUR D’ALENE CASINO (cdacasino. com), and a chance to win some green at any of their 1,200 gaming machines.
C O E U R
Starting at $58 per person
D ’A L E N E
Upcoming Events Moonlit Monster Cruises OCTOBER 23-25
There’s no better way to celebrate Halloween than on the spooky waters of Lake Coeur d’Alene! These fright-filled 45-minute cruises featuring spooky décor, a grand prize costume/photo contest, signature Halloween cocktails and much more. Visit cda4.fun for departure times and to purchase tickets.
Includes lift tickets, lodging, and indoor waterpark. Restrictions apply. Call 855.810.5061 or visit silvermt.com.
Scavenger Hunt OCTOBER 23-25
Set out on a Halloween-themed adventure in downtown Coeur d’Alene that will have you decoding clues at local restaurants, shops, and coffee shops for a chance to win gift certificates to your favorite North Idaho businesses. Details at cda4.fun.
Coeur d’Alene Flea Market OCTOBER 25
This October event will be the last outdoor market at the Roosevelt Inn this season. Fall Harvest is this month’s theme. Enjoy costume contests, pumpkin drawing, a photo booth, and more. Sun, 10 am-2 pm, the Roosevelt Inn.
North Idaho’s Great Pumpkin Fest OCTOBER 23-25
Your Everyday Getaway Escape to Coeur d’Alene this week and ﬁnd live music, art galleries, great views, hundreds of shops... and that’s on Wednesday! Check out our online calendar and plan your Tuesday or Wednesday or any day! There’s always something fun going on. coeurdalene.org
Pick the perfect pumpkin, enjoy wagon rides, lots of great food and stein hosting at the first annual Great Pumpkin Fest at the Kootenai County Fairgrounds. Fri, noon-6 pm; Sat, 10 am-6 pm; Sun, 10 am-4 pm; Kootenai County Fairgrounds.
For more events, things to do & places to stay, go to cda4.fun COEUR D’ALENE
OCTOBER 22, 2020 INLANDER 55
Play where the big winners play.
35 Winners of up to $10,000 Cash! FRIDAY, OCTOBER 30 TH 4 PM – 6 PM | WIN A SHARE OF $10,000 CASH 7 PM | WIN A SHARE OF $50,000 CASH Play your favorite video gaming machines with your Coeur Rewards card to earn Tickets into the giveaway. Earn one ticket for every 500 points earned. See the Coeur Rewards booth or cdacasino.com for promotion rules.
Seattle Team Game Days NOW – JANUARY 3 RD 9 AM - 9 PM On Seattle Team game days, swipe your Coeur Rewards card to win great prizes! Just be one of the first 1,000 Coeur Rewards members to earn 100 points and receive one kiosk game play.
W E LC O M E H O M E .
$2,500 in Mystery Prizes Every Tuesday! TUESDAYS IN OCTOBER 8 AM - 10 PM Play every Tuesday for a chance to win your share of $2,500 in prizes. Earn 100 points each Tuesday to play.
CASINO | HOTEL | DINING | SPA | CHAMPIONSHIP GOLF 3 7 9 1 4 S O U T H N U K WA LQ W • W O R L E Y, I D A H O 8 3 8 7 6 • 1 8 0 0 - 5 2 3 - 2 4 6 4 • C D A C A S I N O . C O M