A commercial fire in Olympia on December 15 took three hours to extinguish. A small 2-story building that housed several unique small businesses and an apartment had water damage in addition to structural damage. No one was injured, but everyone must find a new place to live and work, and then try to replace the treasures and essentials that were destroyed.
A gofundme page for each entity was live in December, but now it’s best to use the business name for updates and to find out how to help. As you can deduce from the brief self-descriptions below, you’ll be introduced to some out-of-the ordinary “businesses” (and one resident). These are the kinds of places that give Olympia its distinct character and we need them downtown now more than ever.
Devon is a third generation Olympia resident who has been employed at Espresso Parts LLC for 21 years. He lived in the building in an apartment with his two children.
A unique venture consisting of a working motorcycle garage & coffee bar serving espresso and road snacks made in the PNW.
The Ton is a Pacific Northwest motorcycle and lifestyle magazine created by motorcycle, tattoo, and rock and roll enthusiasts huddled in the rainiest drenched stretches of highways in the world.
This extraordinary nonprofit uses story-telling as a catalyst for connection, conversation and social change. They teach storytelling and oral history workshops among many other community engagement projects.
This women-owned communications firm designs user-centered web pages and develops communications strategies for businesses and groups large and small. They shared a space with Window Seat Media, and their web page has had an up-to-date listing of contact links for everyone who was located in the building.
Community Print is a member-run, community-supported letterpress studio, operating in Downtown Olympia for over 20 years. They work with mostly reclaimed materials, from donated type to paper that was slated for the dumpster, making beautiful and tangible things in an antiquated fashion.
Sound Audio Repair fixes audio gear right, for clients around the Salish Sea and the world — so you can get back to doing what you love — music. Sound Audio shared a space with Community Pring.
An all-volunteer operation, selling hard-to-come-by books, posters, stickers etc. in support of radical community organizing as opposed to globalization and representative democracy, at break-even prices, for 25 years. All was lost.
Sa Voix is an inclusive salon space where beautiful hair is considered a form of self expression and empowerment.
Ruby’s Elite Barbershop
Rudy had just relocated and opened his first solo shop with prized furniture, all lost
Victoria M. taught herself the art of tattooing and in 2020 opened her shop here to become a full-time professional.
Tree Action Group of Thurston Climate Action Team
5 pm, January 12,
The Tree Action Group works to strengthen local ordinances to protect trees, promoting and participating in the planting of more trees as a carbon sink, and educating the public to why trees are part of the climate solution. For more information contact Lynn Fitz-Hugh at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Plant a chestnut tree — or two!
Pick up dates: Jan 15, Feb 13, May 19 Apr 10
Receive free chestnut trees to plant in your yard, farm, school etc. Chestnuts provide healthy local food, biodiversity, clean water, carbon sequestration and shade in a climate-changed world. 9-month old bare root seedlings will grow 40-80 feet tall at maturity! Chestnuts require another chestnut within 200 feet for pollination, so consider getting two, or coordinate with your neighbors to plant several! This project is a joint venture between the Vangardners, Many Trees Project, and Build Soil. Email email@example.com with questions and to sign up.
Mutual Aid by Dean Spade, author reading
5 pm, Fri, Jan 21
In person at Olympia Lamplighters
Mutual Aid: Building Solidarity During this Crisis (and the Next), provides a grassroots theory and practical tools of mutual aid to support people to survive crisis conditions, to prepare for coming disasters, and to build vibrant social movements that can tackle the root causes of crisis and disaster.
5 pm livestream on zoom; info and zoom link at www.orcabooks.com
Women of Color in Leadership Movement
KOWA Radio is transitioning from broadcasting for a time and moving more into podcasting as the Women of Color in Leadership Movement. Find more information and check out the video at http://www.facebook.com/mediaisland/videos
Olympia’s YWCA is engaged in an ambitious project to dismantle racism and other oppressions. Programs and activities are built around the Youth Action Circle, a network of young people
working on social justice issues; Social Justice Movie Nights; and a two-hour monthly “Let’s Talk” open workshop among an array of other activities. A Youth Council that supports empowerment through mentorship is open to all young people, but centers girls and Black, Indigenous, queer, trans, and non-binary youth. These activities have had regular in-person schedules, but given the current stage of the coronavirus it’s best to visit their web page at www.ywcaofolympia.org/ what-were-doing, to find out about times—and also more creative opportunities to engage.
Every Tuesday from 2-7 pm, Saturdays 2-6, Olympia Community Acupuncture is a nonprofit clinic offering group acupuncture, currently inside Unity of Olympia (1335 Fern St SW). Community acupuncture differs from standard acupuncture because patients are treated together in a large quiet room — an approach that makes treatment more accessible and affordable, and mirrors how traditional acupuncture is practiced. Treatments are individualized to address particular health concerns. Pay on a sliding scale from $20-50. Appts are preferred: www.olycommunityacu.org, but walk-ins can sign up.