March 8: International Women’s Day
United Nation’s International Women’s Day is celebrated in places all around the world. If, for some lucky reason, you happen to be in Italy on March 8, you may notice many Italian women out promoting gender parity are holding or wearing little yellow flowers. Those puffy yellow blooms, w
hich, from a distance, look like bouquets of Kellogg’s Corn Pops, are part of Italy’s Festa della Donna tradition. On March 8 for more than half a century now, Italians — mostly men — harvest the flowers from the winter-blooming mimosa trees and give them to the women they love as gifts of mutual respect. The feeling is that although mimosa flowers look fragile, they’re actually very strong, resilient plants that can overcome difficult times. It’s a fine tradition, but some claim that the act of giving bouquets of flowers to women on this day reinforces gender roles. Wouldn’t it be so much easier to give the women we love and respect the parity they deserve? Meanwhile, here in Washington state we don’t have to worry about that kind of patronage, because, although we have mimosa trees growing in the area, their blooms typically puff out in spring and summer — and they’re mostly pink. So, if you’re planning to celebrate International Women’s Day this year we suggest mulching your past gender-role tradition and sow some seeds of change to bring about gender parity. But don’t discount the power of the flower — they still look and smell great. So give them with abandon on March 8 — and every other day. Here is a list of Women’s Day events around the state:
March 5: International Women’s Day celebration; Yellowhawk Resort, 2901 Old Milton Hwy
Walla Walla, 1 to 4 p.m.; $70 plus tax; info: yellowhawkresort.com/international-womens-day-celebration
Women who make wine, beer and spirits will be on hand, as well as artists, chefs and merchants, to celebrate the achievements of women int he world. According to their website, the resort will “donate $15 of every ticket and all raffle proceeds to YWCA of Walla Walla to support their mission of eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice freedom and dignity for all.”
March 8: Festa Della Donna, 5 to 8 p.m., Vashon Center for the Arts, 19600 Vashon Hwy SW, Vashon Island; free; info: whtk.us
Take the ferry out to Vashon to celebrate with local women-owned vendors, artists and authors such as, Alessandra Rose, June Sekuguchi, Mary Coss, Julia Anderson, Shauna Ahern and Tavi Black. There will be plenty of local food and drink and vendors.
March 14: United Vision Project virtual event, 6 to 7 p.m.; Get info and sign up here: mobilize.us/womensmarch/event/398997/
The United Vision Project is trying to bring together people who gravitate toward political extremes — which is pretty much everyone these days. The project fosters deep conversation in an effort to get people to understand other viewpoints. The premise seems simple: Change can’t occur if we don’t understand each other. Yeah, it’s hard. But, sometimes we have to stay silent and listen. If we can master that, then reciprocity is right around the corner. You can sign up for the event, or check the box to receive texts about the Women’s March on their website. Or, you get involved with an organization that is trying to fill in the political chasm with goodness.
Around the state
March 5, 12, 19, and 26: Family Saturdays at the Washington State History Museum
1911 Pacific Ave. Tacoma; tickets included with general admission available that the museum’s admissions desk; Info: https://www.chatterblock.com/events/334422/family-saturdays-washington-state-history-museum/
In the Lushootseed language, which is a dialect made up of several Salish tribes, the anglicization of their word, “Whulge” describes the body of water that surrounds us. The word literally means “salt water.” And so it was named… then, George Vancouver named it “Puget Sound” after some dude who accompanied him on an expedition. What’s in a name all depends on who makes the history. During Family Saturday’s at the Washington State History Museum families can work together to explore how we record history.
March 5 and 6: Thriftapalooza, Washington State Fair Events Center, 110 9th Ave SW, Puyallup, WA; 9 a.m. March 5 to 4 p.m. March 6; $8 entry after 9 a.m.; 8 a.m. early-bird entry is $20; kids under 12 are free, Info: thriftapalooza.net/ or,
They call this, “Your Community’s Largest Thrifting Event!” Well, if that doesn’t just pique interest, what does? Of course, the accuracy of that claim might have something to do with where your community is. Perhaps faded, well-worn facts have multiple re-useable applications depending upon time of day, humidity and community. Probably not. Either way, head out to Puyallup for a fact-free weekend of thrifting. Thrifting reduces waste and helps take pressure off our deflated supply lines — and those are the facts.
March 11 to 13: Walla Walla Guitar Festival, Downtown Walls Walla, 6 W. Rose St.; ticket prices vary, so check the website for details; info: wallawallaguitarfestival.ticketbud.com/wwgf11
Ever since groundbreaking performers such as Charlie Christian — who may have been the first guy to place a pickup in an acoustic guitar — and Chuck Berry — who duckwalked his Gibson ES-335 across a stage beginning in 1958 — provided the inspiration for thousands of hep cats to pick up guitars, sales of the six-stringed instrument have skyrocketed. Christian and Berry were truly inspirational cats. Regular cats, however, don’t really like guitars. Perhaps it’s because through most of the instrument’s history, its strings were made of catgut. But, don’t fret kitties, because it’s not your harvested innards that string guitars. The word, “catgut” is thought to be a portmanteau of “cattle’ and “gut.” Or, at least that’s one school of thought. The strings were made from the innards of cattle, hogs, horses, mules or donkeys. Cats can go back to sleeping on the couch now. The rest of the farm can relax, too; because these days most strings are made from metal or nylon. Few guitarists prefer to pluck gut. To learn more interesting facts, head to downtown Walla Walla for their annual Guitar Festival. There’s a full slate of performers — all cool cats.