COLUMNS Foodlove

Crazy for Quiche!

I’M ALWAYS a sucker for a dish that satisfies any of the three meals as well as one that can utilize a variety of ingredients with panache. Quiche is also a trans-seasonal dish, as it is fresh and inviting as a light al fresco supper with white wine and salad, or as part of a hearty brunch in deepest winter accompanied by potatoes or a cup of soup.

The word quiche is, as we know, French, but derives from the German kuchen—to regional kuche to kische. The origin of the dish seems obscure, but may have descended from the kingdom of Lotharingia (the modern area of Alsace-Lorraine), which though sounding Tolkeinish existed briefly as part of the 9th Century Carolingian Empire. (Tangentally, the politically active Lotharingians asserted their democratic leanings by deposing rival kings, including one Charles the Fat. We can assume that he enjoyed his kische.)

Larousse Gastronomique states that Nancy, not Lorraine, is the real birthplace of quiche, and any dish that contains the migaine (eggs & cream) and mixed with onion and other surprising items like pumpkin is called a quiche. Still others assert a Roman form of cheesecake, patinea, is the real predecessor of quiche.

QuicheAnglophilic sources claim the first written recipes for quiche in 14th century manuscripts from England. One such book is the Forme of Cury, or for you English listeners, “forms of cookery,” from the Master Cooks of King Richard the II. Ah! Humble dish, noble origins.

Whatever the geographical paternity, the primary ingredients of the first versions of our savory pie were eggs and cream cooked into a custard with various meats—bacon being the signature of quiche Lorraine. Technically Lorraine doesn’t use onions or other savories, while her sister Alsacienne is flavored a la alliums. Original crusts were bread dough or puff pastry, and one early version of Lorraine was cooked in a cast iron pan without fancy touches like a crimped edge or lattice top.

Luckily food evolves, and now quiche contains cheese and a host of tantalizing ingredients. The key to filling is fresh herbs and veggies sautéed beforehand. And please, use half and half and fresh eggs for the custard. Gourmet additions include smoked and flavored salts (try lemon), lox, or sheep’s and goat’s milk cheeses. Try anchovies if you’ve a mind to, capers, or kale and chard. Whip a little pesto or an olive tapenade into the custard. Marinated red peppers, artichoke hearts . . . you get the idea.

Crust is as essential as filling, and is traditionally blind baked. I have made and eaten many a quiche without doing so, however, so try for yourself to see. Recipes for quiche abound in almost any cookbook; my favorite basic custard formula is from the Moosewood original cookbook, and crust from Nigella Lawson’s How to Be a Domestic Goddess. Quiche is easy to make (as pie!), and is as tasty elaborate as basic (yeh—butter, eggs, cream—say no more). Perfect for a potluck or to make for one and eat on the whole week. Simple and civilized: Bon appétit!

Nigella Lawson follows this basic rule for shortcrust pastry:

Use half the weight of fat to flour and use a liquid–egg yolk,orange juice, whatever–to bind it. Put the flour in a shallow bowl, add the cold, diced fats
and stir to coat. Put in the freezer for 10 minutes. Put the liquid with a pinch of salt in the fridge. Then by hand, with mixer, or food processor, combine the fats and flour til the mixture is sandy. Add in liquid till the mix just comes together and form into disc(s) by hand. Refrigerate for 20 minutes before rolling out.

This recipe, from How To Be A Domestic Goddess, will make more than enough:

1 2/3 cup flour
1/2 cup cold butter, cubed 2 egg yolks
2 Tb. ice water
1 tsp. salt
1 Tb. sugar


Shower Me With Flowers

I have found a new subtle group of foods that completely fit the bill for summer sensuality. It all started one night while rambling through an urban park. The hour was late-ish, the company and weather fine. I was surrounded by aromatic and visually compelling roses, all colors and sizes. I began with mere quaffing of fragrances. Full and ripe, these roses invited first that I bury my face in their abundant offerings, and then the tasting was inevitable. I overrode my questions of pesticides and chemicals for a walk on the wild side. I plucked a petal from a just-past-her-prime bloom and put it gently into my mouth. Ah! The delicacy, the subtle flavor, the richness! I was hooked. Flower to flower I flitted, like some oversized night pollinating butterfly, sampling the culinary vagaries of the roses.

Of course, we’ve most of us eaten flowers at some point, in a salad or perhaps in ice cream (think the nouveau penchant for lavender). But how many of us eat these delicacies at home? I encourage garden grazing, with the usual caveats: if you don’t know it’s edible, don’t eat it; and of course if you’ve just peppered it with RoundUp, well . . . duh.

What follows is a quick list for making like a bee and getting into flower tasting:

Bee Balm (Monarda species) is similar to bergamot and can be used to flavor tea.

Calendula (Calendula Officianalis) called “poor man’s saffron” the golden or orange petals add a joyful hue to salads and ethnic foods. Peppery in flavor.

Violet (Viola species) are sweet like nectar and of course are spectacular candied.

Thyme (Thymus Vulgaris) are lemony in flavor and dee-lishus in subtle pasta dishes.

Dandelion (Taraxacum officinalis) add color and zest like calendula, and young buds can be fried as they taste similar to mushrooms.

Cornflower (Centaurea cynaus) taste sweet and spicy, almost like cloves.

Impress your friends: bring cupcakes with candied violets to next backyard do.

Candied Violets

  • Wash flowers gently in a basin and drain on paper towels
  • When the blossoms are dry, paint a little beaten egg white gently  on each blossom and then sprinkle with granulated sugar
  • Leave to dry for a few days sitting in a sugar filled tray
  • Stored in an airtight jar away from light, they will keep indefinitely

Candied violets


Menu of Earthly Delights – Longevity in Manzanita

Longevity in Manzanita
Jamie Ehrke, Proprietor

There is something truly self-nurturing and sensual about being rubbed with warm oil—chosen specifically for one’s unique combination of energies—and then soothed with hot towels. Or perhaps hot stones and shells placed on the body to facilitate relaxation, or a massage accompanied by therapeutic and aromatic essential oils. Follow with a yoga class, tonifying elixir, or stimulating browse through a boutique bursting with mindfully chosen treats to nurture body and soul.

Where and what is this paradise of nurturance? LONGEVITY in Manzanita . . . your friendly neighborhood yummy place!

Longevity, “a place to relax and rejuvenate,” is the lovingly crafted business of long-time North coaster Jamie Ehrke. Located in a beautifully remodeled historic building in downtown Manzanita, Longevity offers massage, yoga, unique shopping, and an elixir bar. Like many coastal business folk, Ehrke found her way to her livelihood via a circuitous route.

She studied sustainable agriculture and political economy at Evergreen College in Washington. She then moved to Nehalem with former partner Hank Tallman, a coastal native and co-founded Lunasea Gardens. Departure from that endeavor brought her to the usual round of coastal work. Restaurant jobs, landscaping, all good jobs at the time that allowed her to take care of her young son and stay in the communities she loved. And, there came a time when Ehrke knew that she wanted a different life.

“I had always wanted to do something in healing arts field. I just had an ‘aha’ moment after seeing a flyer in Portland for East/West Massage School and said, that’s what I’ll do. And I just went and did it. I knew that I would like it but it turns out that I love it and am passionate about it! I’ve found my niche.”

Although Ehrke wasn’t necessarily intending to start a business like Longevity, events flowed in that direction and here she finds herself. She took over an existing business, Parinamah, but changed the services significantly and put her own brand on the opportunities offered. Like many coastal businesses, Longevity caters to the tourist trade as well as to year round residents. And while the three-village area doesn’t lack yoga, massage, and spa opportunities, Longevity has its own special vibe. “It’s casual, comfortable, and nurturing. People feel that,” Ehrke says.

Yoga and massage are the emphasis. The beautiful studio can accommodate up to 12 students per class, so yogis are assured of an intimate setting with a great teacher to student ratio. For summer the studio will offer 2-3 yoga classes every day. A variety of styles and levels give plenty of options. The massage menu is truly inspiring, with everything from the standard Swedish or deep tissue massage to Abhyanga Ayurvedic massage (of aforementioned warmed oils and towels!), Aromatherapy, Reflexology, Chakra Balancing or pregnancy massage. Longevity massage therapist Christina Pyktel has developed a line of chakra specific products, including oils that can be used in massage. Both she and Ehrke have a robust list of local massage clients and found themselves completely booked throughout the tourist season last year.

Longevity boasts two lovely massage rooms—one that accommodates couples or friends wanting to enjoy individual massages in the same room—and a cozy spot for hanging out and enjoying an herbal elixir. The artisan boutique showcases wares by seven local artists, including jewelry, pottery, found and visual art. Also shop for regional fair trade beauty products and fabulous socks, as well as yoga wear and accessories. The experience is delicious all the way round. Skip the ice cream and give yourself a real summer treat: a few hours of self-nurturance. Your body will thank you!

Longevity is located at 123 Laneda Ave. in Manzanita. Tel: (503) 368-3800 Email: Web:

Longevity Longevity Longevity


Open Air Markets – Food, plus handicrafts, art and more

Cowlitz Community Farmers Market. Saturdays, through October, 9am – 2pm. At the Cowlitz Expo Center in Longview, WA.

Kelso Bridge Market. Sundays, May – September, 10am – 3pm. At Rotary Spray Park, on the lawn of Catlin Hall in Kelso, WA.

Two Islands Farm Market. Fridays, 3 – 6:30pm, May – October. 59 W. Birnie Slough Rd on Puget Island. Trolley shuttle available from the Elochoman Marina at 3, 4, & 5pm and stops at the Chamber of Commerce in Cathlamet, WA.

Weekend Market. Fridays and Saturdays on the first and third weekends of the month, 10am – 4pm. At the Long Beach Grange on Sandridge Road in Long Beach, WA.

Saturday Market at the Port. Saturdays, April – September, 10am – 4pm. Along the waterfront in Ilwaco, WA.

Astoria Sunday Market. Sundays, May 8 – October 9, 10am – 3pm. On 12th St in downtown Astoria.

Manzanita Farmer’s Market. Fridays, June 10 – September 23, 5 – 8pm (5 – 7pm after September 9). At the Windermere parking lot on Laneda in Manzanita.

Saturday Farmer’s Market. Saturdays, May 7 – October 29. 9am – 1pm at City Hall in Newport. EBT, WIC,  Senior Nutrition, credit and debit cards accepted.


Farmer’s Markets – Food, flowers and plants only

Cannon Beach Farmer's Market
Cannon Beach Farmer's Market. Every Tuesday, 2-5 pm, June 14-Sept 24.

Columbia-Pacific Farmer’s Market. Fridays, 3 – 7pm, May Through September. In downtown Long Beach, WA.

River People’s Farmer’s Market. Thursdays, 3 – 7pm, June 23 through September, possible into October. At the parking lot in front of Astoria Indoor Garden Supply on 13th St in Astoria.  The market accepts EBT, and WIC and Senior Nutrition coupons.

Seaside Farmer’s Market. Saturdays, July 2 – September 24 (excluding August 27), 1 – 4pm at the TLC Credit Union Parking Lot.

Cannon Beach Farmer’s Market. Tuesdays, June 14 – September 27, 2 – 5pm. Located in the Midtown area of Cannon Beach. EBT, Visa, and Mastercard accepted.

Tillamook Farmer’s Market. Saturdays, June 11 – September 24, 9am – 2pm. At Laurel & 2nd St in Tillamook.


Workshops, Classes, How-Tos, Events . . . .

Hoop House How-to.
Slide Shows Online. Learn how to build your own hoop house by watching a series of slide shows put together by the Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture. Prospective builders are taken step by step through the construction process. Cost estimates, a list of resources, and links to websites with more information are presented. To see the slideshows, visit:

Northwest Earth Institute Gathering in Sept.
Northwest Earth Institute will hold their Annual North American Gathering September 15 – 18 at Fort Worden State Park and Conference Center in Port Townsend, WA. This year’s gathering is entitled “If Not Me, Then Who? Building Healthy Communities and Local Food Systems One Day at a Time.” Events at the gathering include workshops on sustainable food, edible landscaping, dynamic community organizing, networking and community building. Will Allen, named one of Time’s top 100 most influential people in the world in 2010 because of his inspiring food justice work in low-income neighborhoods, is this year’s keynote speaker. Space at the gathering is limited, early registration is encouraged. For schedule, fees, and registration:

Collecting Rainwater for Future Use. $10 suggested donation. June 8 at 6pm at the Long Beach Grange on Sand Ridge Rd in Long Beach, WA
Build a Solar/Wood-Fired Bath House. A 7-day intensive workshop. June 13 – 19 from 8am – 5pm. The hand-on course will cover the process of building a passive solar bathhouse from siting through site preparation, design, utilization of available resources, building codes, tool use, construction techniques, and time permitting, basic electrical and plumbing. The workshop costs $700 and includes breakfast, lunch, and all materials needed. Class will be held at R-evolution Gardens east of Nehalem. FMI:

Local Charcuterie Workshop
September 26 from 8am – 4pm at the EVOO Cooking School in Cannon Beach.  OSU Extension Clatsop County and the Small Farm Program are offering a workshop for North Coast farmers and chefs on making delicious, legal, and safe charcuterie with locally raised meats. Talks in the morning will cover relevant regulations and best practices for controlling pathogens during meat curing. Speakers include Maureen Taylor of Clatsop County Environmental Health, Will Fargo of Oregon Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety Division, and Dr. Karen Killinger of the Food Science department at Washington State University. In the afternoon, expert salumist Elias Cairo and Tyler Gaston from Portland’s Olympic Provisions will demonstrate techniques and best practices. Tuition is $25 (includes lunch). Space is limited. For reservations, please call Kristin Frost Albrecht @ (503)325-8573  or stop by OSU Extension Clatsop County, 2001 Marine Drive, Room 210, Astoria, Oregon  97103.


Food Love – Fish On!

Frowny CatSOMEWHERE in my mid-twenties a surfer boyfriend introduced me to he and his buddies’ Mexico surf trip staple, the fish taco, and this dee-lish meal-in-one permanently settled in my fave food archive. Fish tacos say travel and summer to me, and provide an instant holiday fiesta in my mouth whenever I eat them. Infinite in variety, the fish taco combines the best of fresh wherever you are—Hawaii, Mexico, the Pacific Northwest. I’m not talkin’ bout those insipid facsimiles you get at chain taco stands, with a floppy fish stick—please!—enclosed inside a soggy tortilla, garnished with unripe tomatoes and mayonnaise. I’m referring to the fresh corn tortilla bursting with seasoned fish, sautéed veggies or imaginative salad, and garnished with a chunky salsa.

Mexican inspired tacos might include snapper quick grilled in olive oil, with cumin, cayenne, and coriander and then flaked into luscious chunks. Julienned fresh red and green peppers, along with slivers of onion sautéed with a little salt and pepper can accompany the fish. Top with a just-made pico de gallo. Don’t stint on the extra cilantro and a dusting of cotija cheese.

Island style fish tacos explode with tropical fishes such as mahi-mahi, ono, or ahi. Grilling the fish is the way to go, after a good soak in a marinade of sesame oil, garlic, ginger, tamari, and lime. Asian inspired flavors beg a fresh Japanese cucumber and fruit salsa—imagine pineapple, mango, or papaya with minced onion and cilantro. Sprinkle with fresh ground pepper and red tinged Haleakala sea salt.

Bigstock fishComing home to the Northwest, a summer fish taco feast could include salmon, steelhead, or sturgeon. In line with seasonality, I like these firmer fish barbequed—not too well done!—with fresh herbs from the garden and a squeeze of lemon, and salt and pepper to taste. Sautee up a batch of kale, garlic, and capers and top with a chiffonade of basil and Italian parsley. Or try a raw chop of mizuna and garden-harvested salad greens and a chipotle kissed apple salsa. Top generously with cilantro or Italian parsley and skip the cheese—these flavoricious tacos don’t need it!

Rice and a slaw or simple salad are great accompaniments to fish tacos, and I always prefer to use corn tortillas. Get creative and use shrimp or crab instead of fish. Possibilities of veg combos are endless, and really any fish lends itself to the taco form. Summer anyone?

Fish Taco

Sensational Summer Salsas!

Fresh Apple Salsa
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon finely chopped canned chipotles
1 tablespoon adobo sauce from canned chipotles
1 teaspoon honey
Kosher salt, as needed
2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro
kosher salt, to taste

2 medium apples, one red and one green. Whisk together vinegar, lime juice, adobo sauce, and honey. Toss with chopped ingredients, adding the apples just before serving.

Island Style
1 small japanese cucumber, peeled and chopped
½ cup diced jicama (or more if you love it)
Chopped cilantro
1 med Maui onion, minced
1 or 2 large minced jalepenos
2 medium sized tomatoes, chopped
1 large mango, diced (pineapple works when mango isn’t in season, or papaya)
chunks of fresh, creamy Maui avocado
squeeze of fresh lime juice

Chop, mix, taste, serve.

Pico de Gallo
1/2 cantaloupe
1 cucumber
1 jicama
2 oranges
2 mangoes or papaya
4 cups watermelon
6 limes, juiced
pico de gallo powdered seasoning (or a mix of cayenne, chili powder, and salt—to taste)

Chop, mix, serve. This is great as a salad on it’s own too. For salsa make the chop a little finer.


Wine and Art in Astoria Saturday June 11

Wine and Art in AstoriaEnjoy a great pairing of wine and art at the annual Wine Walk in historic downtown Astoria in conjunction with the 2nd Saturday Art Walk on June 11. “We pair a selection of art venues with local restaurants providing wine and appetizers,” explained Art Walk Chair Deborah Starr. “There are also some great new gallery installations opening in June so this is the perfect opportunity to see some interesting and spectacular new works here in Astoria.” The Wine Walk takes place from 5 to 9 pm. Wine Walk glasses are available for $10 at Commercial Street Antiques (959 Commercial) and Nepal on Exchange (1421 Commercial).

Glasses become available for sale starting at 4:30pm on the day of the event and include up to six tastings per glass. For more information call 503-791-7940.

Sponsored by Wauna Federal Credit Union, proceeds from the Wine Walk benefit the Astoria Downtown Historic District Association. The real benefit, however, is enjoying this historic town while discovering great new works at local galleries and shops while sipping specially selected wines by local restaurants.


La Cabana Opens in South Astoria

La Cabana
Astoria’s former High Wheeler restaurant, which closed early this year, is under new ownership and has been repurposed into Restaurante “La Cabana”. La Cabana opened on May 28, serving a limited menu of authentic Mexican food. The eclectic seating fixtures and gorgeous views of Youngs Bay have been retained from the eatery’s previous incarnation.

The food at La Cabana is fast, inexpensive, and good. Tacos, gorditas, burritos and sopes are made fresh to order. Tortillas are homemade on site. Menudo is available on Saturdays and Sundays. Entrees are $5.99 (or $1.75 for a single taco).

Soft drinks are available and include Jarritos, Mexican Coca Cola, horchata (made fresh daily), as well as generous pours of Pepsi products, all ranging from  $1.75 – $2.

Note: Payment at La Cabana is currently cash only (as of May 30).  Checks and debit/credit cards are not accepted at this time, but the restaurant owners hope to change this policy in the near future. Look for expanded menu offerings soon.

Restaurante “La Cabana”
Open 9am – 8pm every day.
35431 Highway 101 Business, Astoria


Hanks’s Daily Farm Stand • A fix for your daily veg habit

Hank's Daily Farm StandFancy a stroll down the beach to pick up some tasty local food for supper? Nehalem farmer Hank Tallman of Lunasea Gardens continues his popular daily farm stand stocked with fresh and local food goodies from his own and neighboring farms and gardens.

“I want to get the word out to people who won’t go to a farmers market because they have the assumption that it’s not for them. Organic food is seen as a high class thing; which is great—that has incubated the market, but there needs to be more access for economically challenged people. Everybody deserves to have fresh and local food; my hope is to offer organic produce at a lower cost that conventional items at the grocery,” Tallman states.

The farm stand opened last summer, but a challenging growing season led to a slow start. Tallman is optimistic about this year, though of course farming is always a gamble. Jamie Ehrke, owner of Longevity, where the stand is located, says “The feedback last year was great. People were totally excited about it; I got tons of people asking if we were doing it again.”

Tallman encourages local gardeners and other producers (eggs, honey, flowers, value-added products like soap, salsas, jams) to contact him with items they would like to sell. Meadow Harvest grass-fed beef and lamb will be available, as well as Tallwoman Tonics and herbs.

The stand will be open daily from 10am to 7pm at Longevity, 123 Laneda Ave. in Manzanita. Contact Tallman Tel: 503-368-FARM or Email:


Beach Dance Serves up Good Vibrations

Beach Dancing

WE ALL OF US, in our hearts, long to be free. Free from stress, worry, self-consciousness, inhibition. Free to express our individual selves. How that looks for any given person will vary, but there are elemental ways that humans, across cultures, give voice to the uniqueness of who they are. Creative expression: to sing, talk story, create visual representations of one’s world. And to dance—especially to dance.

Though we adults have, in our busy Western culture, lost touch with our dancing selves—except at wedding receptions and nightclubs—there is a worldwide literal movement toward reclaiming the celebration of the body’s desire to move. This is the “conscious dance,” movement, and the permutations of styles, names, and formats are as varied as there are minds and bodies to conceive of ways to move. The threads that weave through most forms of conscious dance are that it is practiced in community, and the movement is free-form; no steps to follow, no right or wrong way to move, no end result. Just pure unadulterated freedom to be yourself.

Like what you’re hearing? Well like this even more: Beach Dance in Cannon Beach, hosted by movement artist and facilitator Lisa Evans, is back for a fourth season.

“I’ve had nine rainy months to collect new music,” smiles Lisa, “and I’m rarin’ to go!”

Beach Dance is a conscious movement form that allows folks to don a tiny iPod Shuffle and headphones, loaded with one lovingly crafted playlist, that is shared by others participating in the session. The group gathers (on the beach), Lisa shares a few words, and it’s ready, set, play! And play is the word, essentially, for what happens next. Immersed in a private world of music, yet linked in community with the other dancers, the mover begins to experiment. To dare to let go, let down, let their creative spirit out. The dance may look big or small—the beach offers a jumbo-sized dance floor—and there is no limitation beyond the participant’s desire and imagination. Dancing outdoors offers a unique opportunity to connect both with self and the natural world, a canvas which itself is perpetually in motion.

Lisa Evans
Lisa Evans, Beach Dance Founder

“Dancing with the elements is about involving nature in the creative process. What happens to your dance when you see an eagle fly overhead? What do you incorporate into your dance? The water, the horizon, the wind, a sandcastle?” enthuses Lisa. “It’s a dynamic environment, unlike a studio.”

One of Lisa’s gifts as a facilitator is that she embodies a deep, insightful spirit and an effortless attitude of spontaneity and fun. Her own journey in conscious dance began at the Body Moves studio in Portland in the late ‘90s.

“The Sunday dance at Body Moves became my church,” Lisa remembers. “Moving in freedom spoke deeply to my soul, it became my practice.” When she relocated to Cannon Beach in 2001, she couldn’t always make the drive back into Portland for that Sunday dance. “I missed it. So I started dancing on the beach.” At first a morning beach run with a Walkman—remember those pre-iPod days?—would incorporate a little booty shake. Gradually her time on the beach became more about the dance than miles logged. And the dance on the beach became her passion.

Fast forward to summer 2008. Lisa and a friend and fellow dancer had been offering conscious dance inside for about a year. And Lisa was hungering to bring others out onto the beach with her to share that experience. She had recently seen herself in photos taken by a visitor to Cannon Beach—a professional photographer who found himself touched by Lisa’s spirit as she danced on the beach. What she saw in the pictures made her realize what others had witnessed in her dance: the joy, freedom, and inspiration to express oneself.

“I knew I had to just do it,” Lisa states, “to offer that opportunity to others.” So she presented an initial beach dance to the newly forming local conscious dance community and friends from around the NW. Fifteen dancers came, another photographer friend showed up to capture the magic.

“That dance was confirmation for me. I knew that this was how I could be of service in the world,” Lisa remembers with tears in her eyes. “I could just see the expressions on people’s faces. I could watch their bodies, hear how they felt and what it was like for them. That first dance helped me overcome my fear . . . is anybody going to get this besides me? Is someone going to love it as much as I do?” And how: Lisa is on the cover of the summer issue of Conscious Dancer magazine, an international publication that serves the dance community.
The summer of 2011 will offer 30 opportunities to get free and funky with yourself on one of the most inspiring dance floors in the world: the North end of Cannon Beach (Chapman Point). And beyond that?

“There’s a lot of beautiful beaches in the world,” Lisa laughs. “And I want to dance on them with others!”
Stay tuned in and turned on to the Beach Dance scene via Reach Lisa at Tel: 503-860-7711 email:

Conscious Dancer MagazineBEACH DANCE FOUNDER AND FACILITATOR LISA EVANS is on the cover of Conscious Dancer Magazine summer issue. The photo was taken on Maui, at a dance retreat presented by Studio Maui; Tribal Spirit and Spirit Body. In addition to dance facilitation Evans also contributes as a writer to the magazine which covers many facets of the ecstatic/free-style dance movement. Subscriptions to Conscious Dancer are available at You can also download on the web.

Portland, Oregon has developed a strong conscious dance movement, with numerous regular studios and halls where people gather to practice and enjoy dance and a dance community. The studio setting (see offers a deeper training aspect, with a limited number of participants, while other locations attract groups of up to 100 people. For example; Sacred Circle Dance comes together on a Sunday morning, beginning with a meditative circle, before everyone boogies out on their own for the next hour -  the music ranging from slow and meditative, to ethnic, drums, electronic trance, hip-hop, classical and everything in between.

Manzanita offers a Wednesday night ecstatic dance night, Wednesdays, 6:30pm at the Pine Grove Community House, 225 Laneda Ave. This group also includes instruments of any sort, and reminds, no exp. necessary. A $5-$7 sliding fee. A dance group in Astoria has taken a break for the summer, but has been meeting for over three years now – begun initially by Lisa Evans.

Portland Dance Sites: lists all the free form and contact improv sites in portland with links to websites:

Beach Dance Schedule:
Fridays 6:30-8pm (a little earlier once September comes—details on website)
Saturdays & Sundays 10-11:30am
Cost: $20 per event
Location: meet at the top of the beach trail at Chapman Point in the North End of Cannon Beach (more details on the website)

Friday night session themes will be announced on the website, Saturdays are a surprise, and Sundays offer a mellower more contemplative dance—though some calories will still likely be burned! Lisa offers a unique playlist for each event. Participants should wear layered clothing and bring what they need to feel comfortable outdoors—water, appropriate footwear etc. and arrive 10-15 minutes before the session starts. Individual iPods and headphones are furnished, plus a refreshing beverage. Cash or check for payment. Pre-registration required.

Lisa also does group events for up to 20 participants. Birthdays, bridal parties, reunions—she is happy to work with specific needs or themes.

Watcha waitin’ for? Come on and dance!


Local Fare — Feeding Us All

Head Start with Starts
Glimpses of blue sky and sun gets coastal residents chomping at the bit to get outside and begin gardening. But as long-timers know, the chance of a significant frost in May is high—so patience is not only a necessity but a virtue. Later planting with starts is one way to mitigate the wait, and fortunately the Lower Nehalem Community Trust’s Community Garden Program is hosting a sale of organic veggie starts proven for the NW Maritime climate. The sale is on Saturday May 14, from 9am to noon at the Alder Creek Farm.  Greens, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, squashes, tomatoes, herbs and more are will be ready for adoption into your own garden.

“Proceeds from the sale will help with the ongoing improvements to our greenhouse and gardens,” says Karen Matthews, LNCT’s Community Garden manager.   “We continually upgrade our garden practices which allow our productivity to flourish.   The more our garden grows, the more fresh organic produce we can donate to the North County Community Food Bank.” Essential, as food banks continue to see exponential rise in demand, especially for fresh and nutritious foods.

LNCT’s community garden is another avenue to local food access and food security. The 25 active gardeners share the work and harvest of food from the ½ acre garden. Other ways to get involved in the Trust include membership; a 4 in. plant start can be yours with a commitment to get involved.
Annual membership in the LNCT begins at just $15 and includes benefits such as reduced admission and tuition to events, programs, and workshops.

To reach Alder Creek Farm & Natural Area, turn south off of Hwy 101 at Underhill Lane between Manzanita and Nehalem.  Follow the Lane to the end of the road for plenty of free parking. Tel: 503-368-3203 Email: Web:

Growin’ A Row
Growing a garden this year? Food Roots of Tillamook County is encouraging local gardeners to plant an extra row or bed for donation to the hungry. No donation is too small or large, and neighbors or friends can team up to make a bigger impact. The usual suspects of carrots, onions, squash, peppers, beets, and so on are popular, but lesser-known plants are welcome too. Produce should be in good, edible shape and it is appreciated if it is field washed.

There are two ways to donate: bring the food to the Regional Food Bank of Tillamook County at 2105 Fourth St. in Tillamook; or take your produce directly to a food pantry, soup kitchen or other community program. For a list of these programs call The Regional Food Bank at 503-842-3154 x1 or x4.
Spread the word about the Grow a Row program, and help increase access to high quality local food. For more info about the program, contact Food Roots. Tel: 503-842-3154 x2 Email:

Postals Packin’ Peas
May 14 is the day of the world’s largest one-day food drive, and everyone with a mailbox (and without, for that matter) is invited to participate. More than 4,000 letter carriers in urban and rural areas throughout Oregon and Clark County, WA will join with letter carriers across America to collect donations of nonperishable food from their postal customers during the National Association of Letter Carriers Food Drive, Saturday, May 14.

The Run down:
1. Look for a white, plastic, degradable food drive bag in your mail during the first week of May.
Fill the bag (or any sturdy bag) with nutritious, nonperishable food. The Oregon Food Bank Network will recycle your bag.

2. Place it by your mailbox early on Saturday, May 14.

3. All donated food stays in the community where it was collected. Letter carriers will collect nonperishable food donations left by mailboxes and take them to their local post office, where more than a thousand volunteers throughout Oregon and Clark County will pack the food. Trucks will pick up the food and deliver it to regional food banks of the Oregon Food Bank Network. If you miss your letter carrier’s daily visit, drop off your food donations at any post office by Wednesday, May 18.

Foods to donate:
canned meats (tuna, chicken, salmon),
canned and boxed meals (soup, chili, stew, macaroni and cheese),
canned or dried beans and peas (black, pinto, lentils),
pasta, rice cereal,
canned fruits, 100 percent fruit juice (canned, plastic or boxed),
canned vegetables,
cooking oil, boxed baking mixes.

Avoid the Obvious:
Rusty or unlabeled cans, glass containers, perishable items, homemade items, noncommercial canned or packaged items, alcoholic beverages, mixes or soda, open or used items.

Up-Beet Shopping Up Wahkiakum Way
Two Island’s Farm Market began their sixth season Friday, May 6th at Stockhouse’s Farm, 59 W. Birnie Slough Road on Puget Island.  Market hours have been extended and will run Fridays from 3-6:30 pm through October.  Fresh Wahkiakum grown vegetables, cut flowers, veggie starts (23 varieties of tomato plants), perennials, artisan breads, free-range eggs, and USDA processed meats (goat, beef, lamb and pork) by the cut are often available.  Market booths will accept Senior Farmers Market Checks and SNAP cards this season.  The Up-Beet Stage is ready for a new season with an Open Mic—all musicians welcome—3-6:30–a great sound system will amplify your talents!  The Chief Wahkiakum trolley will run shoppers from the Elochoman Marina to the Farmers Market, leaving the marina at 3, 4 and 5 pm on Fridays (weather permitting). Contact Rob or Diane Stockhouse, Tel: 360.849.4145, or the Wahkiakum Chamber for more info, Tel: 360-795-9996.


Good to Go.

Goodwill StoreGoodwill Industries – Impressively Hip!
We get the lowdown on how Goodwill makes it good to shop.

THE ECONOMY SUCKS—we all know it. No matter the spin politicians and positive thinkers try to put on it, Oregonians are hoeing the hard ol’ row. But some businesses are thriving despite it all. Impressive numbers: 2009 revenue of $99.5 million bucks, wages and benefits paid to the tune of $41.1 million, three new stores open, and millions of pounds of inventory moved. We’re not talking Nike here folks, but Goodwill—specifically Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette (GICW). Before you jump in with the old “it’s not ethical for charities to make so much money” saw, take note that .92 cents of every dollar earned by GICW goes toward the mission of the company: to help those with barriers to employment find and retain work.

There was a time when thrift stores were just for folks down on their luck, places to unload the unwanted surplus of life, or just plain grotty little shops filled with junk no one could possibly want. Times have changed, and the aforementioned economy and the aesthetic of “reduce, reuse, recycle” has made thrift hip, green, and the smart choice for most consumers. Walk into the new Warrenton Goodwill and you’ll be greeted by friendly local staff, a plethora of usable items attractively arranged, and a shiny new building. “You look at the store; nothing’s tatty, stuff is brand new still,” enthused one browsing customer. And the stock in the store is sustained by the larger community, not full of imported stuff from Portland. “You are big donors here in Clatsop County,” exclaims GICW public relations rep Dale Emanuel. “The donation site at the Warrenton Fred Meyer gets as many donations as the store. We’ll be putting in an attended donation site in Seaside soon as well. It’s an economically hard hit county, but a giving one too.”

Goodwill employee
Judi Tuinstra, Lead in textiles, came from Portland as seasoned Goodwill staff. However, she assists in managing over 30 locally hired employees at the Warrenton Store.

GICW is an “A” rated charity and employs 2,000 people, 2/3 of whom have some kind of barrier to employment. That could be a person with little English, just out of a correctional facility, developmentally disabled, a person who has never worked before, or a pregnant teen. Beyond the employees that actually work for the company, the Job Connections program served 27,000 folks, and placed 6,107 people into community employment (2009). This program is available at the Warrenton store, and is available to anyone who is having a hard time entering or re-entering the job market. “We help you with your resume, give you leads. You have to put yourself out there, but the program helps you do it,” explains Emanuel. GICW also offers ESL training, and long-term career enhancement services.
And all this goodwill is sustained by donations from the local communities GICW serves.

Shop ‘til you drop
Emanuel is excited to share shopping strategies to help consumers get the most out of their expedition to Goodwill. The top things that we buy are readily available in quantity at most Goodwill stores: clothing, shoes, books, CDs & DVDs, housewares and electronics, and furniture. “When you need something in these categories, come here first.” Best times to shop are Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday since most donations come on the weekend. Season changes and three-day weekends are another time to find the best selection of stock. Looking for that perfect sectional or dining room table? Wait ‘til the end of the month, when your neighbors have retired to Florida and unloaded their furniture at the local Goodwill.

Goodwill employee
Lorne Mundo, Store Donation Attendant, keeps very busy. An average of 50 donations generated from the local region pull into the donation station daily.

Many stores have a “flavor,” although the Warrenton store hasn’t been open long enough for specific themes to develop (for example, 10th Ave. boutique in PDX is the place to snag those Prada boots for hundreds less than retail), the steady donations keep the stock flowing. Items are moved through in a 3-5 week rotation, with 6000-7000 articles a day changing over in the Warrenton location. The store is literally different every day. Every Sunday half the clothing goes to half price. “Thrift does go on sale,” laughs Emanuel. Should one week be particularly low on, say, housewares, the cavernous back room of the store holds 500-700 lb boxes full of stock fill-in.

In fact, the inner workings of the moderately sized Warrenton store are eye-popping. Donations pour in on one side, and workers do what they are able, from sorting clothes, matching shoes, tagging furniture, and even baling clothes. Clothing that doesn’t sell are moved into an area to await squishing in a specially designed machine that presses textile materials into 1,000 lb bales. Want to really get a sense of how much stuff there is in the world? Visit the backroom of your local Goodwill.

But it’s all good; “GICW is the leader among all stores for recycling,” enthuses Emanuel. “We lead in donations, retail sales, and amount kept out of landfills. I mean, our Goodwills here in the Columbia Willamette region are the best in the world.” Where does all that squished up textile goodness go? Sold to salvagers and sent to third world countries. Non-textile items are sold for salvage too. Another way for GICW to make money toward their mission, and to keep stuff out of the ground.

No matter how good you got it, get to Goodwill where the getting, and giving, is always good.

Goodwill Shopping Tips

Timing is Everything

Best time of year to shop
December thru mid February – at the end of the year everyone is looking for a tax write-off and it is also the time of year that Goodwill gets some of its most valuable donations.

Just after Labor Day – when a high volume of donations come in.

When summer turns to fall – another time of year when a high volume of donations come in.

Best days of the week to shop
Goodwill gets most of its donations on the weekends, which means the best days to shop are Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

Best days of the month to find furniture
Most people move into new places at the beginning of the month, so Goodwill gets the most furniture at the end of the month.

Best selection
Goodwill gets lots of everything. But for the highest year long selection — the top five types of donations below are plentiful.

  • Clothing
  • Housewares
  • Books, CDs and DVDs
  • Electronics
  • Shoes

Hit the Right Store: If you are looking for something in particular, one store may be better than another. To reach the manager of your nearby Goodwill, go to and click on store locator. Here are some examples:
FINE JEWELRY – Forest Grove Store, 2903 Pacific Ave, Forest Grove, OR 97116
APPAREL – Broadway Store,1231 NE Broadway, Portland, OR, 97232
BOOKS (59,000)/ HOUSEWARES – The Portland Superstore, 1943 SE 6th Ave, Portland, OR, 97214
APPAREL – Bend Store, 61315 S. Hwy 97, Bend, OR 97702
SHOES – Hillsboro Store, 966 S.E. Oak Street, Hillsboro, OR 97123
FURNITURE – San Rafael Store, 1640 NE 122nd Ave, Portland, OR 97230
BOOKS – Salem Store, 3535 Lancaster Drive NE, Salem, OR 97305
DESIGNER APPAREL – Goodwill on Tenth, 838 SW 10th Ave, Portland, OR 97205
FURNITURE – Fisher’s Landing Store, 1200 SE 162nd Ave., Vancouver, WA 98683
LINEN – McMinnville Store, 1371 NE Hwy 99 W, McMinnville, OR 97128
BOOKS – Vancouver Store, 6425 NE Fourth Plain, Vancouver, WA 98661

Goodwill interiorNorth Coasters have two other Goodwill shopping options, in addition to the Warrenton store: the best, weirdest, rarest, and most collectible items that are received nationwide go for sale on this site that functions similar to ebay. Prices begin at $5 and sell for an average high of $27. Portland based, this thousands-title strong site lists between 3500 and 4000 items a day. To stock the store, the Portland warehouse goes through 15-20 half-ton boxes a day. (GICW gets more book donations than any other Goodwill system). State of the art software continuously monitors sales of books all over the internet, insuring that won’t be undersold. Packaging is green and if you are going to be in town you can pick up your order at the Hillsboro location.

Goodwill mission: GICW’s mission is to provide vocational opportunities to people with barriers to employment. Their retail program has two purposes: to integrate people with barriers to employment into their workforce and to generate funding for vocational programs.

Goodwill stores/regions are run autonomously with a board of directors and CEO. Although they subscribe to the same mission, all have their own level of success and prosperity. The GICW is the leader in the US for good practice and management.

You can shop Goodwill in Canada and places like Venezuela, Trinidad & Tobago, and Mexico. International élan!


Love to Love You Baby

Marie Meiffren
Marie Meiffren

LOVING TOUCH Infant Massage offers a unique way to commune with your child

When: June 2, 9, & 16, 2011. From 10-11am
Where: Lotus Yoga Studio, 1230 Marine Drive, Astoria
Who: Marie Meiffren, LMT
Cost: $25 for the three sessions, $10 optional for oils and booklet
Contact: Pre-registration and information: 503-338-8106;;
Additional Resources:

Imagine yourself helpless, unable to ask for what you need. Perhaps you don’t feel well, or you are afraid, or tired because you can’t sleep. Enter the person you love most in the world, whom you most depend upon. And that person gently cradles your head, looks into your eyes, and asks if they can help you feel better. If they can give you a massage, even! Imagine your relief, your delight, the love that moves between you and this fabulous person who is here to care for just you.

Ahhhhh . . . sound amazing? Delightful?

This tender asking for permission is the beginning of an infant massage session, and the initiation of a deep level of contact and in-tunement with your child (or child in your care). And the beautiful truth is, anyone can learn the techniques of massaging an infant for health and well being.

Marie Meiffren, LMT, brings her knowledge, training, and compassion to a three-day training on the gentle, ancient techniques of infant massage. Drawn from Indian, Chinese, and European massage traditions, the techniques build in three hour-long se    ssions with your baby. Meiffren took her training from the Loving Touch Foundation, an international training organization based in Portland.

Baby Massage“I feel like I have an opportunity to help mothers,” Meiffren smiles. “I didn’t know anything as a young mom! The massage offers a deep way to be in contact with your baby. You learn to read your baby’s cues; what does it mean when your baby’s face starts screwing up? They don’t like what you are doing! You adjust . . . there is a trust that happens when you are correct in really reading your baby’s cues.”

Meiffren has four children herself, and in fact her career as a massage therapist began with her first colicky baby and a book on infant massage. She taught herself the techniques and worked on subsequent children and foster children—until she realized the hunger in herself to know more. She desired be more helpful to the children in her life—especially the medically and developmentally challenged foster kids she and her family looked after. She was licensed in the mid-90s and had a thriving practice in Arizona until relocating with her husband and youngest daughter to Astoria in 2006. Now Moon Lotus massage is housed at 1410 Marine Drive, the location of Jade River Acupuncture, where Meiffren also works in conjunction with Acupuncturist Deborah Shelton.

“My practice is changing as I myself get older,” Meiffren muses. “While I still do deep Swedish massage, I find myself drawn to gentler work; the infant massage class is really like coming full circle for me.”

Meiffren offered a County sponsored class in winter of last year that was successful and well attended. Not only did moms (and dads) learn to be confident with the massage techniques, but also there was networking and sharing among the parents. Attending the class is a way for parents to meet each other, and help mitigate the isolation that new parents especially can sometimes feel. Meiffren’s next class, offered in June, is economically accessible—a feature which is of paramount importance to her. “The class is just $25 for all three sessions, and an optional $10 for the book and oils. If someone really feels they can’t pay, they should contact me.”

Students learn a set sequence of techniques that begins by asking the infant for permission, massaging the whole body, and ending with gentle stretching. There are easy and effective sequences that soothe common ailments, alleviate fussy crying (from colic or teething), and promote general well being.

Baby MassageThe class is perfect for moms, dads, caregivers, or grandparents. Pregnant women can come too, as Meiffren has life-size dolls to work with. Infants of any age are welcome—the techniques are applicable to toddlers and older children—but age 0 to 9 months are ideal for this class setting.  Even children with disabilities or other health problems are welcome, but Meiffren asks that parents contact her first if there is a significant health challenge. The class will accommodate 10 students and pre-registration is required. She hopes to offer the class three times a year, and a Spanish language class may be in the offing. Meiffren also offers private instruction for new parents.

“It’s so great to watch the moms with their babies—totally focused, totally in tune—seriously, there would be world peace if every mom was like this with her baby.”

World peace and happy babies? What’s not to love?


Fresh and Fun: Astoria Sunday Market

Cyndi MudgeWe’ve weathered another winter here on the North Coast, and folks is itchin’ to get out, connect, and enjoy those glimpses of blue sky. The Astoria Sunday Market (ASM) gears up in May to usher us into the summer.

Market goers will find the usual fantastic transformation of Twelfth Street, beginning Mother’s Day Weekend. Up to two hundred booths will feature the crafts, foods, baked goods, flowers and produce that we’ve all come to enjoy. Interested in one-stop shopping? In addition to all the great items available at the Market, many of the downtown merchants are open on Sundays because of the Market. You can get your groceries, lunch, office supplies, new lamp, and a birthday present for Uncle Bob without heading out to a box store. Local economy thrives and everybody’s happy.

“The Market started to revitalize historic downtown,” ASM Director Cyndi Mudge explains. “In the beginning there were maybe only 30 booths, and most downtown merchants were closed Sundays. The ASM has added vibrancy to the community and downtown core; we’ve succeeded in bringing $137,000 into downtown projects.” Recipients of this boon include Liberty Theater, the Commercial Fishermen’s Festival, Garden of Surging Waves,  Astoria Music Festival and Astoria Regatta, among many others. In addition, funds from Astoria Sunday Market have helped purchase bicycles for the Astoria Police Department, repave 12th Street, resurface the downtown public parking lot, purchase streetscape planters and benches for the downtown plaza, and help underwrite exterior repairs to Liberty Theater.

The growth of the Market is not only evident by the number of booths and foot traffic. ASM has created popular programs such as the Scavenger’s Feast and the Young Entrepreneur’s Club and Market Biz Kidz tent. These programs benefit local businesses and sellers, and foster future cottage industry vendors by empowering kids to make, grow, and sell their own products. The music scene is expanding too, with 18 local and regional bands slated to perform at the food court—as always the music is free and an integral part of the Market experience. One of Mudge’s favorite aspects of the ASM that she encouraged when she came on board as Director in 2008 are the busking possibilities.

“I grew up in Seattle with the Public Market in Pike’s Place,” she says. “The busking was fantastic there, a real part of the thriving market scene. I wanted to have that here. Now it’s growing and we had everything last year from free hugs to high school musicians to folks traveling out from Portland.” ASM does have a free but required busking permit that goes over the courtesy rules of performing at the market. Mudge asks folks to contact her if they want to busk. “The good, bad and the ugly, they all add to the fun of the Market in ways you’d never imagine,” Mudge laughs.

De Asis FarmsAstoria Sunday Market is in its 11th year. Rising gas prices have seen a change in the demographic of original vendors, and some folks are retiring after a long run with the Market. New vendors have come to take their place, and the mix of familiar with the unknown keeps the Market fresh. ASM also runs a cruise ship market through the cruising season that contributes to the local economy, and offers another opportunity to vend during weekdays. The Winter Market keeps others selling in off-season months.

“The Market(s) are a huge community asset. A community square for locals; a happy weekly celebration and a great place to meet your neighbors. Our vendors are like a family, they take care of each other and support each other. The Market is a joyful, compassionate environment that contributes to the vibrancy of our region.” Clearly Cyndi Mudge loves her job.
Astoria Sunday Market runs May 8 through October 9. The Market is open from 10 am to 3 pm. Contact Cyndi Mudge: Tel: 503-325-1010. Web:
Kid Vendor at MarketProgram Spotlight

Baked Alaska Chef Chris Holen commands the Scavenger’s Feast, sending participants on a chase through the Market for specific ingredients. When adventurers return to Mise En Place Kitchenware with the goods, Holen co-creates a fabulous Sunday meal. The monthly Scavenger’s Feast is $45 per person with a portion of the proceeds benefitting Astoria Sunday Market. On September 4 one child gets in free with a paying adult for a family scavenged feast. To make reservations for The Scavenger’s Feast call Mise En Place Kitchenware at 503-325-7414 or stop by and sign-up in person. Feast Dates: Sunday, June 5, July 10, July 31, August 21, September 4 (bring kiddos), and September 18.

And at the Market Biz Kidz Tent, the young ‘uns are busy learning what it takes to make and grow their own products and sell them at the market. In mid-June, the participants of the Young Entrepreneur’s Club will vend their wares at the Market at the Kidz Tent. This opportunity is supported by the Sunday Market, Clatsop Co. 4-H, Western Oregon Waste, and Wauna Federal Credit Union.


To Market!

No Excuse to Not Eat Your Veg: Exponential Access to Fresh and Local.
Three New Coastal Farmers Markets

“Oregon is absolutely the epicenter of this [food systems security] work in the US.” So says Sharon Thornberry, Community Food Systems Manager of the Oregon Food Bank, and player on the national food stage. Another progressive stance we can be proud of. Clatsop and Tillamook Counties are leaders in collaborative efforts to create sustainable food webs and access for all to fresh and local foods. Nowhere is this more evident than in the blossoming of three, count ‘em, three new food markets on the North Coast.

Eat Local ProduceWhat’s up with all the energy for fresh and local? “People have been asking for a local food farmers market for years,” says Merianne Myers, North Coast Food Web (NCFW) and Astoria Co-op board member, “and now the elements have come together to meet that demand. It’s very exciting.” Myers refers to the emerging River People Farmers Market, slated to open Thursday, June 23, in Astoria, in a to-be-determined downtown location. The market’s mission is to bring the Astoria community a “true farmers market focused on making fresh produce and local food products more available to North Coast residents.” Access for any income level is a key component of this new market, and Myers emphasizes that a downtown location allows access by foot, bike, or bus; the market will accept SNAP (food stamp) benefits and also WIC and Senior Nutrition coupons. The benefits go all the way round, with local producers getting access to direct consumers and an opportunity to break into the local food scene.

The market will operate Thursdays from June 23 through September, and if product and demand and weather conspire favorably, through the end of October. Hours are 3-7pm. Only fresh, farm grown produce and flowers, farm raised and eggs, farm-grown plant starts, locally caught fish, and producer made value-added or ready-to-consume food products will be sold. Music is on tap and opportunities to snack too! River People Farmers Market is a partnership between the North Coast Food Web, Blue Scorcher Bakery, Astoria Co-op, KMUN, and OSU Extension Clatsop County.

Contact Merianne Myers: Tel: 512-964-5949 Email: Web:
Meanwhile, across the waters the new Columbia-Pacific Farmers Market, a Friday afternoon market in downtown Long Beach, is scheduled to open on May 6 from 3-7pm and run through September.

“The market will be an authentic, regional market featuring food and produce delivered fresh and direct from those who farm, ranch, fish, produce packaged food, and grow flowers and plants,” remarks Jane Holeman, Market Manager. “The weekly Friday afternoon market will support working food producers, honor their way of life and provide a place to gather as a community to have fun.”

Beyond celebrating local food, the market will offer musical entertainment, education, cooking demonstrations and nutritional information, and games and amusements for the children. Contact Jane Holeman: Tel: 360.244.9155 Email: Web:
Seafood at MarketMarket action continues not only North but South, with Seaside getting into the game. A Seaside Farmers Market is in development, a project long in coming for the Seaside community. The Sunset Empire Parks & Rec is spearheading the effort, which is currently in the approval process with the City of Seaside and local police and fire departments.

Mary Blake, director of Sunset Empire Parks & Rec, says that a farmers market is an obvious initiative for her organization. “We’ve been asked by the County to participate in the growing health crises of our community. Food that you eat, exercise that you choose to do, even your land stewardship choices impact health. The market offers a gorgeous effort of building community around healthy lives and choices.  If you make eating fun, if you help people understand how to prepare and eat it, if you really show that digging in the dirt is incredibly satisfying and healthy for you, then people will make the changes they need to make for health.”

Like the other emerging markets, the Seaside Market will emphasize local food from local producers. Fun, music, and community information will also be available. Contact Mary Blake: Tel: 503-738-3311 x 103 Email:

Got your list? Vayamos al mercado!


What’s Cookin’?

BLUE SCORCHER BAKERY ( is getting good at the gluten-free thing. Bakers Packy and Cheryl have perfected a white, “Golden Loaf” and a darker teff-based loaf. Tuesdays is the day for these low-gluten products (as they are not made in a completely gluten-free facility, the über sensitive are warned forthwith.) And in the “early rumor stage,” as BSB owner Joe Sullivan puts it, are plans for an expanded kitchen and ventilation system. Faster service and more menu items would follow—what’s not to love about that?

Blue Scorcher Bakery is open 8am-5pm seven days a week;
1493 Duane St., Astoria; 503-338-7473

Bastion of Brew, the FORT GEORGE has it goin’ on. A visit to their quite impressive website ( and blog will boggle your mind with events and news. Cans are the thing, 16oz lovelies full o’the finest Vortex IPA and 1811 Lager. Even PDXers are getting in on the brew, with a special pouring & poetry event at Spints Alehouse ( on April 17: book release party for Walt Whitman award winner, Carl Adamshick. Beer and poetry, oh my. Methinks these boys mean to stay in business. Don’t forget you can tour the new canning facility on Saturdays at 1pm or 4pm; meet at the bar.

Fort George Brewery is open Monday-Thursday 11am-11pm, Friday-Saturday 11am to midnight, Sunday noon-11pm
1483 Duane St., Astoria; 503-325-PINT
Live music every Sunday night, 8-10pm ~ never a cover

In other beery news, SB 444 passed, which repeals a prohibition-era law that stated craft beer and wine brewers couldn’t share their wares beyond home. Fear no more, brewers and vintners, your lovingly tended beverages have the green light for tasting at fairs, festivals, and lemonade stands—well, better leave this one to the kids.

The livin’ is easy at SWEET BASIL’S WINE BAR in Cannon Beach, especially on Friday and Saturday nights. Tend your palate and enjoy live music most weekends from 6-9pm. Thursdays offers up the open mic scene, a Wed-Sat happy hour (5-6), and the Café has a good series of winemaker’s dinners cooked up.

Sweet Basil’s + The Wine Bar are open Wednesday-Sunday from 5-10pm
271 North Hemlock, Cannon Beach;
Live music Friday & Saturday nights from 6-9pm
Open Mic (poetry & stories) Thursday 6:30-8:30pm

Finally Astoria is getting an Indian restaurant. Just when you thought you’d eaten everywhere in Astoria, HIMANI’S, beloved of Sunday market goers, will offer a bricks and mortar spicy alternative for a night on the town. The Kancharlas, residents of Alderbrook in Astoria, are illustrative of “the family that cooks together, sticks together,” and will primarily be running the restaurant themselves, although mother Mani will initiate another cook into her secrets of stellar South Indian cuisine. OPENING APRIL 2011!

Himani is located at 1044 Marine Dr., Astoria

Nagamani stirrin’ it up at the Sunday Market.



LUSH Life in Midtown, Cannon Beach

Tracey Abel and Todd Rowley own LUSH. Photo: Lisa Evans

IT’S A DARK AND STORMY NIGHT, you’ve got nothing going on and fancy a quiet evening with a book, but also need to get out of the house . . . maybe have a glass of wine. Where to go, in Cannon Beach, for that at home-yet-out feeling? Grab a jacket and head for Lush, Midtown’s comfy wine bar, owned and operated by Tracey Abel and Todd Rowley.

Cannon Beach in a depressed economy might not seem the most obvious time/place to open a wine bar, especially as Abel and Rowley both have successful day jobs and are extremely immersed in community doings. But it was an idea that niggled at them until one day they decided to go for it. A fair amount of research and a leisurely remodel later, Lush opened in July of 2010.

The décor is modern meets vintage funk, in an inspired interior makeover that Rowley, who also owns T&T Construction, did himself. Unique touches include the poured concrete bar top that Rowley impressed with the bottoms of wine bottles for texture. Admire the colored bottles hanging above the bar, transformed into hanging lights also Rowley’s idea. Low couches invite relaxing, as does the gas fireplace and bookshelf filled with wine and local lore.

“We wanted people to have the feeling that they’d just come over casually for a glass of wine, to our home,” Abel says. “We didn’t want to be pretentious.”

That’s not to say the details aren’t all in place. Cloth napkins, impressive stemware, and local art even one glass-topped table is the work of a regional artist are part of Abel’s aesthetic. The floors are poured concrete and cork, the to-go containers are recyclable. An outdoor, dog-friendly space beckons in the nicer weather, but for now the inside will definitely do.

Northwest wines dominate the wine list, but drinkers will also see international varietals. “You won’t find a California Pinot Noir on our list,” Abel laughs. “We find customers really want to focus on NW wines.” This includes labels created by locals Dean Reiman of The Wine Shack and Laurel Hood of Laurel’s Wine Shop. The small plates and appetizers change frequently and are made by Rowley in Lush’s tiny custom retrofitted kitchen. Nibble on warm brie with honey and dates, gird up with flatbreads featuring green apple, fennel & blue cheese, savor some soup, and finish yourself off with a chocolate caramel tart.

Lush has seen a goodly amount of support from locals, for which Abel is grateful. “People want to see business succeed here. That’s what I get from the locals. And we live here too, pay our taxes here. We’re a part of the community and want to give back.” Besides being a great local hangout, Lush offers some much needed entertainment options to the community. Every Wednesday finds a small gathering of open mic enthusiasts, and on first Saturdays of the month “dmoefunk,” a DJ from Portland, spins tunes for an eight-to-late dance party.

“I love it,” Abel muses. “It’s not exactly as I expected, but I wouldn’t change anything.” She and Rowley have lived in Cannon Beach long enough to understand the challenges of owning a business in a seasonal town. They have an eye for the long game and still want to be pouring wine in three years. “What I love are the customers. I know it’s cliché, but the people are what make it for me. We have some customers that are like family. That’s worth a lot.” Meanwhile Abel continues her career as a meeting planner and Rowley fits in remodels on the weekend. Like most Coasties, they’ve made a patchwork that pays the bills and allows for the lifestyle they want.

Lush, as in a descriptor for “wines that are rich, soft, velvety, sweet & fruity,” is open Tues-Sat from 5-9pm. Summer hours will probably be Tues-Sun, 4-9pm. The atmosphere is comfortable, the wines approachable, and the company agreeable. What else do you need to know? Stop in and raise a glass.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Lush Wine BarLush is located at 1235 South Hemlock Street in Cannon Beach.
Winter hours: Tues-Sat 5-9pm
Summer hours: Tues-Sun 4-9pm
Events: Wednesdays Open Mic; first Saturday Dance Party
Contact Tracy for special event reservations.
Tel: 503-436-8500


Titanic Lifeboat Academy Classes Ahoy!

Food Power and Cottage Industries

The Astoria-based Academy describes themselves as “a center for research and education in sustainable living practices, deep ecology ethics, renewable energy systems and low-impact appropriate technologies.” In partnership with CCC’s Education for Life program, the Academy offers up two classes to chew on.

Food Power: The Physical, Monetary, Political, & Planetary Consequences of What We Put on Our Forks. This four-week course will look at geo-political consequences of food choices, ones we may not have realized. Participants will view and discuss current films about food, share articles and concerns with each other and with speakers and growers. Classes will feature local presenters including Matt Stanley, Manager of the Astoria Coop. Each class will include Sampling and sharing local foods.

Thursdays in April (7, 21,24,28): 6:30-8:45pm $35. Discussion, film, speakers, food.

Cottage Industries for Beginners. Turn your skills or crafts into a home-based business. Curriculum includes understanding how money and the current economy work in order to develop an innovative, relevant home-based business plan. The class will also focus on business networking and small business management (records, finances, marketing).

Mondays in April ( 4,11,18, 25, includes May2): 6-9pm $45. Classes take place at the Lifeboat Academy, 91868 Young’s River Road, Astoria. Web: Email: Tel: 503-325-6886


Queen of the Sun

Queen of the SunFrom the director of “The Real Dirt on Farmer John” comes a profound, alternative look at the tragic global bee crisis. Juxtaposing the catastrophic disappearance of bees with the mysterious world of the beehive, Queen of the Sun weaves an unusual and dramatic story of the heart-felt struggles of beekeepers, scientists and philosophers from around the world. Featuring Michael Pollan, Gunther Hauk and Vandana Shiva, Queen of the Sun reveals both the problems and the solutions in renewing a culture in balance with nature.

Special Showings: April 22 • 23, 8pm (83 min.)
Columbian Theater • 1102 Marine Dr. Astoria