Press "Enter" to skip to content

Community Spotlight — November/December 2020

Scientists on the Go Program

The WET Center’s popular science packets are now digital! The “Scientists on the Go” program offers rotating science activities along with digital science packets focused on grade level topics for K-5. Each packet includes activities to take learning off the computer. Learn about wolves, salmon, and the water cycle. Check back weekly for new ways to engage your scientists:  Scientists on the Go program.

The Olympia Coalition to Abolish Nuclear Weapons meets through ONLINE VIDEO during the Coronavirus pandemic. Be part of productive meetings on the 3rd Thursday of each month starting at 5:00 pm sharp through a Zoom video conference.  Please join us on THURSDAY NOVEMBER 19.  Contact  Glen Anderson (360) 491-9093 in advance for the link and the agenda.
West Central Neighborhood Park

This welcoming neighborhood park was created after community members showed that the City’s approval of a 7-11 on the corner of Harrison and Division failed to meet city standards. For almost 10 years, volunteers have planted and tended a variety of shrubs, flowers, fruit trees, vegetable gardens and special pathways. Enjoy the glorious commingling of fall colors while getting the park ready for winter. Join a great group of volunteers at a (social distancing) work  party any Sunday from 11 to 1. To learn more:

 Vigils — not vigilantes

Vigils for peace and nonviolence. Wednesdays at Sylvester Park from 12:00 noon to 1:00 pm (Legion & Capitol Way). Fridays at Percival Landing from 4:30 to 6:00 pm. Come for all or part of the hour to witness in a friendly way for peace and non-violence. We provide plenty of signs. Wear a facemask. Info: 360-491-9093

“Women in Black” silent vigil. Fridays from 5:00 to 6:00 pm, on the south side of W 4th Ave, near the spray fountain. Since 1988, part of a worldwide network of women publicly opposing war and all violence. Event for women only. Info: Rosemary Barnhart 350- 866- 4768

Peace vigil in Centralia. Saturdays from noon to 1:00 pm at the edge of WashingtonPark (Locust & Pearl) in downtown Centralia. For info:  Lewis County Fire Mountain FOR chapter, Larry Kerschner,  

Electronics recycling at Best Buy

Responsibly get rid of mystery cables and dead computers – no matter where they came from! Best Buy offers a free electronics recycling programs in Thurston County (and throughout the US in fact). The company collects more than 400 pounds of product for recycling every minute stores are open. Some of the many products they recycle for free (limit 3 items per household per day): Laptops, hard drives, mice & keyboards, modems, webcams, tablets, printers, etc. A full list is at

Orca Books Cooperative

Orca Books Cooperative opened its new doors at 315 5th Ave SE on October1, next to Rainy Day

The store’s new hours for Covid-times are 12:00pm – 6:00pm every day. The co-op is still offering curbside pickup as well for customers who do not want to come into the store. The cooperative is fosters community education by supporting authors and artists and creating a friendly and safe space for all—as well as offering  access to a diverse collection of new and used books. Go to for their calendar of events, to order books or for info about joining the co-op.

A fresh start with the shower bus

From one woman’s idea in 2018 to a solid reality this summer, a  bus equipped with 17 showers is now providing showers for those without. Every Tuesday, the shower bus will be at Unity Church on the Westside, off Fern St. SW. On other days, the bus will serve  encampments, mitigation sites, and faith communities throughout Thurston County.  There are plenty of opportunities for volunteers, ranging from an at-home position doing admin tasks, to onsite positions as Equipment Assistants, Welcome Booth staff and Trailer Assistants — specific tasks and the portal to volunteer are on their excellent website at During the first half of November, the Shower Bus is part of The Community Foundation’s “Give Local” campaign. To contribute go to under NEWS.

The Olympia Free Clinic

TOFC provides acute medical care for problems like sudden illnesses or mild injuries for people 18 years or older who aren’t covered by insurance or can’t uae their coverage. It dosen’t matter where you live. The clinic is open just now on an appointment basis,  scheduled in advance, but hopes to reopen for walk-ins soon.  For help:  call 360-890-4074 #3, email, or request an appointment online – a staff member will contact you within 2 business days to confirm your appointment.

La Clínica Gratis de Olympia brinda atención médica aguda para problemas como enfermedades repentinas o lesiones leves para personas mayores de 18 años que no están cubiertas por el seguro

TOFC está cerrada por visita sin cita previa.Volveremos a abrir lo antes posible. Todavía estamos aquí para ayudarlo por teléfono. Para obtener ayuda, llame al 360-890-4074 y presione la opción 6, o envíe un correo electrónico a

A new online source for local news, The Olympia Tribune launched in September with free content (no paywall).  Its founders intend it as a platform for often unheard community voices, serving as “a bulwark to protect the ideals of justice, fairness, and inclusivity in our community and government.”

Writers include a diverse bunch of journalists, essayists, poets, activists, visual story-tellers and others posting about local and state government issues, homelessness and human rights, neighborhood news and politics.

Find the Tribune on Facebook,; on the web at and on Twitter,

Olympia Mutual Aid Partners

Volunteers with Oly MAP offer services to houseless people and communities in need of essentials like water, food, cleaned clothes and trash removal. They also provide self-governance and neighbor relations support to people living in encampments. By partnering with many local organizations, the needs of  unhoused neighbors and the larger community can be met. Oly MAP accepts donations of many kinds: financial, items, clothes and food.  Read about them at

International Migrants Day

Today, more people than ever live in a country other than the one in which they were born. While many individuals migrate out of choice, many others migrate out of necessity. In 2019, the number of migrants globally reached an estimated 272 million, 51 million more than in 2010  The observance of International Migrants Day on December 18 this year focuses on the varied and unique stories of social cohesion for each migrant living a new life and building new communities all over the globe.  Read the 2020 UN Report on migration, its causes and effects at

International Day of Solidarity

Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA) is calling upon Churches to Preach Palestine by incorporating Palestine in elements of worship on Sunday, November 29. The 29th is  International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People and the 1st week of Advent in the Christian Calendar. FOSNA’s Clergy and Seminar Action Council has collected and curated a variety of worship resources from various traditions. View our resources here.

IMAGINATIVE logo here???  WiP banner???

To be featured on the Community Spotlight, send 120 words about your program or event to before the 4th Thursday in the month.  Send regular meetings and other items for posting on our Community Calendar (LocalMotive) online – and be sure to look for events there too.  We can also feature items on our Facebook page and instagram.  Check our twitter feed for pithy comments on the current situation. Above all, read and share Works in Progress!

Subscribe to Works in Progress





Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Port Report: The Port of Olympia in July approved a…