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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY: Poetry, food drives and a big band in a Baby Bar

Posted By on Wed, Nov 12, 2014 at 9:39 AM

Happy humpday all ye fellow frozen citizens — you're halfway to the weekend, so you've got that going for you. We have a slew of event listings to help you pass the time until Friday, including some carefully culled Staff Picks. Dive in!

No time for browsing? No problem — here are some of the best of the lot for Wednesday, Nov. 12: 

MUSIC | Did you read our interview with Mike V., leader of New Jersey rock crew The Everymen? You totally should. Then you should make your way to Neato Burrito/Baby Bar for the band's show at 10 pm. It's free! Here's a bit of what's in store: 

WORDS | Same spot, earlier in the evening, it's Broken Mic at the Baby Bar, featuring writers from the new Railtown Almanac of Spokane poetry. You can read our story about the Railtown Almanac right here

MUSIC | The folks at the Big Dipper are combining a great cause with some live tunes, as Shaman's Harvest and Aardvark provide the tunes, and you bring canned food for a Second Harvest food drive and get in for a mere $5. 

ETC | The Spokane Folklore Society hosts a weekly Contra Dance featuring live music and a caller, and it's a cheap night out at $5 for members, $7 for non-members. 

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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY? Southern soul in Sandpoint, fee-free state parks and T-Rex!

Posted By on Tue, Nov 11, 2014 at 10:28 AM

Despite the 20-degree temps, we're not willing to acknowledge winter. We're just going to keep plugging along, hitting the town and having a good time. We suggest you do the same, picking something to do from our extensive event listings and Staff Picks. Just be sure to wear a hat on this frosty Veterans Day. 

If you don't have time to make your way through the listings yourself, here are some highlights we found for Tuesday, Nov. 11: 

MUSIC | Big night in Sandpoint tonight, thanks to the Southern Soul Assembly tour stopping by the Panida Theater. Four performers who are all headliners in their own right are joining up for a night of acoustic performances and storytelling. JJ Grey, Marc Broussard, Luther Dickinson and Anders Osborne are sure to heat up your night with some great picking and singing. Here's a taste: 

SPORTS & OUTDOORS | The state has made access to all state parks totally free today for the aptly named Free State Park Day

FILM | It's Totally Tubular Tuesday at the Garland Theater, and tonight's special screening is the classic dino-flick, Jurassic Park. Haven't seen Jurassic Park? That's just insane. Here's what you've been missing: 

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Monday, November 10, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY? Park life, a little vino and local tunes

Posted By on Mon, Nov 10, 2014 at 10:35 AM

Happy Monday, Web denizens! You're ready to fire up another week, we can tall from here. Maybe you've already researched our extensive events listings or Staff Picks to make a plan for the day. Good on ya!

If you haven't, we're here to help. Here's what we found of note in the events for Monday, Nov. 10: 

MUSIC | The Nate Ostrander Trio is hitting Zola tonight to bring some live music to Monday night, starting at 8:30 pm.

FOOD & DRINK | The folks from Napa Valley's Stag Leap Wine Cellars are in town to offer a tasting at Vino! A Wine Shop. 

WORDS | Love Manito Park? Then you'll want to drop by the South Hill Library tonight, where local author and historian Tony Bamonte will be reading from his new book about the place. 
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Friday, November 7, 2014

CAT FRIDAY: The cat cafes are coming

Posted By on Fri, Nov 7, 2014 at 1:32 PM

Glynda, a resident of Oakland's Cat Town Cafe, the first cat cafe to open in the U.S., last month. - CAT TOWN CAFE & ADOPTION CENTER FACEBOOK
  • Cat Town Cafe & Adoption Center Facebook
  • Glynda, a resident of Oakland's Cat Town Cafe, the first cat cafe to open in the U.S., last month.

Coffee and cats. What a nice, warm, cozy combination.

This complementary pairing of kitties and caffeine in the form of cat cafes, a trendy concept that originated in Taiwan a few decades ago, is rapidly taking off around the world. The United States welcomed its first "cat-fe" last month, with the opening of Oakland's Cat Town Cafe, and other West Coast cities are already following suit. Both Portland and Seattle are set to each welcome a cat cafe sometime next year. (More about that below.)

While it's assumed cat lovers view cat cafes as one of the best cultural trends to have ever gained traction, others will scoff. Why would you go somewhere to hang out with cats if you already have cats at home? Why would you would want to eat or drink in a room filled with cat fur and other potential contaminants?

Lots of reasons, it turns out. 

The draw for these cultural oddities in the large metro areas where most cat cafes are located isn't limited to the quiet and calming companionship the feline species offers. In high-density population areas where having a pet may not always be allowed due to tenant contracts, such as in Japan — which has the highest number of cat cafes at more than 150 — the concept is appealing to busy professionals who can't make the commitment to owning and caring for a pet.

Besides offering a soothing escape from life's daily hustle, many cat cafes are also part-time adoption centers. Oakland's Cat Town residents are all adoptable, should a customer become so enamored they can't bear to part with the friendly feline they've met over a latte. The intent behind placing adoptable cats in a more relaxed setting like a cafe — in contrast to a crowded, loud shelter — is also a way to showcase cats needing permanent homes in a more uplifting and positive environment. Leading up to Cat Town's debut on Oct. 25, co-founder Ann Dunn said the cat cafe concept is also a "way to lure people in that’s sort of passive."

A scene from a Japanese cat cafe. Japan has the most cat cafes in the world with more than 150 across the country.
  • A scene from a Japanese cat cafe. Japan has the most cat cafes in the world with more than 150 across the country.

And you'd better believe there are very strict health regulations in place at these food-with-cats hybrids, at least from what we know about state-side businesses. Food must be prepared in a completely separate area from where cats are housed.

Before you get too hyped about heading to the Cat Town Cafe, or any other international versions, make sure to check the cafe's website, or call, to see if reservations are needed before your visit. To prevent a mass of excited, squealing humans from scaring and overwhelming their furry residents, cat cafes in Europe (like this one in London) and Cat Town only allow a predetermined number of guests into the cat's lounging quarters at once. Most cafes also have a set of basic guidelines all customers are asked to follow when interacting with the cats.

While Cat Town became the first to actually open in the U.S., other Western cities aren't far behind. Another Bay Area cafe, KitTea, was set to open in San Francisco this summer, but hasn't announced yet when it will officially open. 

Closer to Spokane, Portland is set to get its own kitty coffee house with Purringtons Cat Lounge. The business's site says it's set to open in early 2015, and is partnering with Oregon's Cat Adoption Team (CAT) to house adoptable kitties alongside its espresso offerings. The cafe is to be located in the Northeast Portland area, at 3529 NE Martin Luther King Blvd

Meanwhile, the Rose City's northern rival Seattle is not to be outdone, and plans for its first cat cafe, Seattle Meowtropolitan, are in the works. The couple behind the concept, which is planned to follow in the footsteps of its predecessors by housing adoptable cats, recently launched a Kickstarter campaign and they're hoping to open the cafe sometime in mid-2015. A location hasn't yet been determined. 

As amazing as it would be for Spokane to have its own cat cafe, I have my doubts that a city our size could sustain a business concept like this in the long-term. Do readers agree or disagree? Why or why not? Would you visit a cat cafe as a tourist in another city? Have you already been to one? We'd enjoy readers' thoughts on the subject. Please comment below or email me, at [email protected]

Also, don't forget to check out the results of the 2014 Cat Friday Halloween Cats Photo Contest! The results were posted last Friday, and we're still waiting to hear from our winner. 

  • Cat Town Cafe & Adoption Center Facebook

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WHAT'S UP TODAY? Food fests, First Friday, Snowlander Expo and PowderKeg

Posted By on Fri, Nov 7, 2014 at 9:48 AM

Congrats, you made it to the weekend. Hopefully you've taken the time to peruse our incredibly diverse array of event listings and carefully considered Staff Picks. If not, we're here to help with some suggestions. 

Here are a few things that jumped out at me for Friday, Nov. 7: 

FOOD & DRINK | Think you love chocolate? I mean, really love chocolate? Then nine hours of non-stop indulgence might be just the thing for you at the Decadence Chocolate Festival starting at noon today. 

FOOD & DRINK | A fine way to follow up that chocolate affair? How about the Wine Tasting Gala at Lincoln Center, featuring about 25 wines from around the region?

THEATER | The Stage Left is hosting the Hit & Run VIII Play Festival, an excellent primer on local theater talent, from directors to writers to actors. 

FOOD & DRINK | Of course, top of the list is a pair of events from the Inlander, as both the PowderKeg Inlander Brew Festival and Snowlander Expo full of winter gear and sports vendors of all stripes both start today at 4 pm.

VISUAL ARTS | It's First Friday, so there are all sorts of worthy art openings and showcases around town — you can find a detailed list of options right here. Among them are the book release party for the Mixology: the Art of Classic Cocktails book by local artist Sheila Evans we wrote about last week


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Thursday, November 6, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY? Part-time Gorillaz, lady shredders and writing tips for teens

Posted By on Thu, Nov 6, 2014 at 9:31 AM

Barreling into a weekend full of good things to do, there's good reason to get it started early. Several, in fact, judging by our event listings and Staff Picks. We've perused the activities slated for today, and here's what we found worth noting for Thursday, Nov. 6: 

MUSIC | Top of the list clearly is the show at Knitting Factory featuring Deltron 3030 and turntablist extraordinaire Kid Koala — who is both opening the show and part of the headlining trio. Deltron 3030 collects three regular contributors to the Gorillaz in producer Dan the Automator, rapper Del Tha Funky Homosapien and DJ Kid Koala, and collectively they've made one killer of an album in Event 2. Here's a little taste of their sound: 

FILM | Gonzaga is hosting a screening of Pretty Faces, a documentary about women who thrive in all manner of snow sports. Consider it a must-see for ski-flick fans — boys and girls, men and women. Here's a look: 

WORDS | Aspiring young writers unite! Here's the perfect opportunity for sixth-graders on up: The Teen Writers of the Inland Empire, or T.W.I.N.E., are holding their monthly meeting tonight at the Spokane Valley Library. 

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Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Behind the Cover: Snowlander

Posted By on Wed, Nov 5, 2014 at 2:52 PM


Grab some hot cocoa and snuggle up by the fire with a copy of this Snowlander. Alissia Blackwood Mead designed this week's cover and we wanted to know how the idea came about.

The Inlander: What inspired this cover? Bad Christmas sweaters?
Alissia Blackwood Mead: YES! Sort of. We were thinking about Snowlander merch ideas, and we said, "Wouldn't it be cool to get sweaters knitted?" But that's prohibitively expensive. So I thought we could print the design of knitting on T-shirts. In the process of working that idea out, I thought it would make an amazing cover instead — so that's when we pitched it to you. After that I had to study knitted patterns all over Pinterest, and create a vector-knit-patterned cover by changing each individual stitch to create the patterns I wanted. My favorite part are the deer. They're a little dopey and cute.

So you basically "knit" this cover digitally?

Pretty much. I actually think knitting is faster.

Do you knit?
I've dabbled — but I've only ever succeeded in making some wonky dishcloths. I can crochet, though.

So if we made these sweaters, would you wear one?
Totally. Every single day.
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WHAT'S UP TODAY? Comedy, jazz and jamming, plus a dash of Roman archaeology

Posted By on Wed, Nov 5, 2014 at 9:55 AM

Happy Humpday, web denizens! You've survived another election and are looking to party — we know how you roll. Good thing there are all manner of awesome things to do in our extensive event listings and carefully crafted Staff Picks

If you don't have the inclination to sift through all those yourself, we're here to help. Here are the events that jumped out as I perused what's happening on Wednesday, Nov. 5: 

MUSIC | Down Pullman way, it's time for the day-long WSU Jazz Festival, featuring percussionist Tom Morgan. 

WORDS | The Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture is hosting a lecture by Dr. Beth M. Greene of the University of Western Ontario called "Women, Children and Families in the Military Communities of the Western Roman Empire." Nothing like a little Roman archaeology to clear the head. 

COMEDY | We trust you've read our Arts & Culture Editor Mike Bookey's recent story on the local comedy scene by now. Now check out some local talent for yourself at Open Mic Comedy night at the Brooklyn Deli.

MUSIC | Local band Bodhi Drip makes their regular Wednesday stop at the Red Room Lounge tonight at 9:30 pm. Here's a YouTube clip of the band playing last month: 

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Tuesday, November 4, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY? Exploring Mars, avalanche awareness and some seriously trippy puppets

Posted By on Tue, Nov 4, 2014 at 10:02 AM

Happy Election Day, people. As you know, the Inlander website always holds an immense selection of event listings and Staff Picks for your consideration, but if you don't have the time, we can help. 

Here's what caught my eye going down around town on Tuesday, Nov. 4. 

WORDS | Tonight marks the return of the National Geographic Live series at the INB Performing Arts Center. Tonight's edition, "Exploring Mars: The Next Generation," features engineer Kobie Boykins, who will be talking about and showing video of his work on NASA's Mars Exploration Program. Keep an eye out for the Men in Black trying to zap you on the way out of the theater. 

SPORTS & OUTDOORS | REI is hosting another of its valuable outdoor discussions as we all prepare for the winter sports season. Tonight at 7 pm, get all the information you need about avalanche awareness. And this is a good time to remind you to follow all the pertinent outdoors news and tips through our Outlander blog

WORDS | Auntie's hosts author Carol Cassella for a reading of her new book, Gemine, tonight at 7 pm.

FILM | It's Totally Tubular Tuesday at the Garland Theater again, which means a classic flick on the screen for cheap at 7 pm. This week's selection? Tripped-out puppet feast The Dark Crystal. Here's a look: 

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Monday, November 3, 2014

WHAT'S UP TODAY? Bats, big bands and learning some sultry moves

Posted By on Mon, Nov 3, 2014 at 10:10 AM

So you survived Halloween and Day of the Dead — congrats! But that doesn't mean you need to hunker down and stay home until Thanksgiving. Or even until Tuesday. There are all manner of events going on all the time, as seen in our extensive event listings and Staff Picks

Here are the highlights I saw when I searched today's action for Monday, Nov. 3: 

MUSIC | The Bob Curnow Big Band is headlining a show at Big Dipper. It's a great chance to get into some cool jazz on a Monday night. 

SPORTS & OUTDOORS | Winter might be mild this year, but there's bound to be enough snow for playing at some point. Tonight at the Shadle Library, they're hosting  a chat, Get Ready for Snowshoeing, that will fill you in on the best equipment, proper attire and everything else you need to know. 

WORDS | Did the Batman movies pique your curiosity about the little winged creatures that gave the superhero his name? Tonight at the Coeur d'Alene Public Library, biologist Jenny Taylor will tell you all you might want to know in a presentation called Bats: Wonders of the Night

ETC. | Why not do a little learnin' on a Monday? Spokane Tango hosts a night of lessons and practice of Argentine tango for cheap. 

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Christmas Tree Recycling

Christmas Tree Recycling @ University High School

Sat., Dec. 27, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Sun., Dec. 28, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Sat., Jan. 3, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. and Sun., Jan. 4, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

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