Weekly Volcano Blogs: Walkie Talkie Blog

Posts made in: March, 2014 (150) Currently Viewing: 51 - 60 of 150

March 11, 2014 at 12:14pm

Senior Airman Madelyn McCullough of 446th AW wins media awards

Senior Airman Madelyn McCullough of the 446th Airlift Wing grabbed three awards in the 2013 Air Force Reserve Command Media Contest. The top entries were announced today by Lt. Gen. James F. Jackson, AFRC commander. The public affairs competition featured 317 Web, print, graphic, still photo and broadcasting entries from 30 organizations.

McCullough grabbed a first place award for Commentary, second place for Outstanding New Writer and third place for News Article.

McCullough's first place entitles her to advance to the Air Force Media Contest at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas.

To read a list of all the winners, click here.

See Also

When award winners write about award winners

March 11, 2014 at 12:32pm

Medal of Honor recipients Staff Sgt. Ty Michael Carter and Sgt. Leroy Arthur Petry to be honored by state Senate

Medals of Honor have been in the news lately. Twenty-four soldiers who fought in World War II, Korea and Vietnam will receive the Medal of Honor March 18 at the White House, correcting oversights that prevented many of them from receiving the nation's highest award for valor because of their Hispanic, Jewish and African-American backgrounds. The awarding of 24 Medals of Honor - most of them posthumously - will be the largest number to be awarded at one time since World War II.

Tomorrow, our state Senate will adopt resolutions sponsored by Sen. Steve O'Ban, R-University Place, recognizing two of the three recent Medal of Honor recipients who reside in Washington. Staff Sgt. Ty Michael Carter will be honored with Senate Resolution 8713 for his heroic actions in the Kamdesh district of the Nuristan Province of Afghanistan, and Sgt. Leroy Arthur Petry will receive a similar honor with Senate Resolution 8714 for his sacrifice in Afghanistan's Paktia Province.

That's awesome.

For details and background on the presentation and herorics, read a news release out of the O'Ban camp below.


March 12, 2014 at 7:23am

Wednesday Morning Joe: Navy's new math, National Guard pissed, new Air Force leaders, Keith Richard's children's book...

The Starbucks inside the Tacoma Proctor District Safeway is always fast in the mornings.


Marine Corps Gen. Joseph Dunford, the top commander in Afghanistan, will testify on Capitol Hill today about the situation on the ground amid a continuing standoff with Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., incoming chairman of the Senate subcommittee that oversees the Pentagon's troubled F-35 program says there's one thing Congress can do to avoid more problems: fully fund it.

Drones will cause an upheaval of society like we haven't seen in 700 years

Elite special forces in danger of cracking as demand is outpacing capacity.

House Intelligence Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) said today that if Sen. Dianne Feinstein's claim that the CIA spied on a Senate computer network is true, it would "destroy" Congress's relationship with the agency. 

The trial of an Army general accused of sexual assault moved into uncharted legal territory Tuesday when the judge dismissed the jury to allow the defense time to hammer out a new plea deal with the military.

Outrage on Capitol Hill as Navy changes ship-counting rules.

The U.S. Air Force nominated the next leaders of its Space and Mobility commands.

A top defense official said he thought it was time to reconsider the legal authority used by the military to target terrorists around the world

Why the Garrison State is here to stay.

National Guard commanders rise in revolt against active Army; Maj. Gen. Rossi questions Guard combat role.

The Air Force's decision to favor new designs over upgrades to legacy aircraft forced the cancellation of a program that could muddy an international market for radar and avionics upgrades.

President Barack Obama's nominee to be director of the National Security Agency and commander of U.S. Cyber Command said yesterday that legislation and transparency are critical to the nation's security in cyberspace.

Feedback on "Transition GPS," which prepares service members to enter the civilian workforce, indicates it improves on the program it replaced.

Please!: A '70s-set rock 'n' roll drama from Martin Scorsese and Mick Jagger.

Here's a cover story about how the Muppets "got their mojo back."

Here are 7 facts about your favorite superheroes - Spiderman, The Avengers, Superman, Wolverine, etc. - that you probably didn't know.

Psst: Here's what The Flash's suit looks like on the new CW series.

Wha-What!: Keith Richards has a children's book on the way.

Finally: A Star Wars-themed parody of Pharrell's Happy.

Put your face close to your screen and hit play...

March 12, 2014 at 7:54am

5 Things To Do Today: Howard Levy, Wayzgoose art, IPA battle, Trail Running Film Festival and more ...

Multi-instrumentalist Howard Levy joins the University of Puget Sound Jazz Band in concert tonight.

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 12 2014 >>>

1. When Chicago bands need a musician, they call Howard Levy. He can play any instrument and genre, although he prefers the piano and harmonica - and has a special affection for the music of South America, the Middle East and the Mediterranean. Most know Levy as the founding harmonica player with Bela Fleck & The Flecktones. A superb harmonica soloist, Levy appeared on the first three Flecktones releases before departing for a career that has seen him appear on hundreds of CDs, win both a Grammy and Joseph Jefferson Award for Best Original Music for a Play, and also work with jazz, rock, country, Latin and classical artists, including his own jazz group Chevere de Chicago. The shape-shifter will join the University of Puget Sound Jazz Band in concert at 7:30 p.m. in Schneebeck Concert Hall. Expect some Balkan folk flute or spiky jazz piano or quirky fusion or. ...

2. Letterpress is art, plus so much more, made tangible and accessible. There is something for everyone, from decorator dilettante to art lover, color theorist, historian, mechanical engineer, graphic designer, or lover of literature. Stylistically, finished works become something old-school modern, and can evoke the turn of the century, the 1600s, or 1950. Each year, King's Books in Tacoma hosts Wayzgoose, a celebration of the printed arts. The University Gallery at Pacific Lutheran University hosts "The Art of Wayzgoose," an exhibition that surveys work collected from past Wayzgoose events in anticipation of the April 2014 event. The opening reception is 5-7 p.m.

3. Who's got the best IPA? It's Washington vs. Oregon for all the marbles. Ninkasi Brewing, 7 Seas Brewing Co., Silver City Brewery & Taproom, Deschutes Brewery, Laurelwood Public House & Brewery and NoLi Brewhouse are bringing their best IPAs to The Swiss for a Battle of the Brands: The IPA Face Off, beginning at 5:30 p.m. Grab a passport to sample all the IPAs before casting your vote. Expect giveaways and swag. Grand prize drawing is a VIP tour of the winning brewery and the "Swiss Golden Ticket," entitling the winner to one year of free cover at The Swiss.

4. Lately our society has become lazy. Our interest in the Great Outdoors has been replaced by an extreme interest in technology. Olympia Film Society is on it. The organization presents an interesting mash-up of our favorite, and least favorite, things to do. Its Trail Running Film Festival will allow us to enjoy the Great Outdoors through the marvel of technology in the Capitol Theater. Gather with your family and friends at 7 p.m. to watch films that recreate the exhilaration of running through the woods, climbing mountains and navigating other tough obstacles. With little movement required, we can enjoy our days of laze and enjoy a nice run. For the crazed music lovers, there will be live music by The Pine Hearts that will satisfy your musical hunger after a long, relaxing run.

5. If you visit locations in Olympia's business zones or have lived in the area for any length of time, you've seen Ira Coyne's hand painted signs.  Certainly, if you have read the Weekly Volcano's Best of Olympia issues then you know him as the Best Mural Artists year after year, including this year. Coyne will be at the Olympia Timberland Library at 7:30 p.m. to talk about his art and how his career came about. Audience questions and conversation will follow.

LINK: Wednesday, March 12 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

March 12, 2014 at 10:13am

Where urban homesteaders hang in Olympia

Personal poultry is yours at the Eastside Urban Farm and Garden Center in Olympia. Photo credit: Nikki McCoy

Need a nesting box or bulk feed for your backyard chickens? How about beekeeping supplies for your small farm? Maybe you need some soil or seed for your raised garden beds. Perhaps you want to learn about making cheese.

All this and more is now available at the recently opened Eastside Urban Farm and Garden Center in the old Curtis Lumber Building in Olympia. Olympians Brighida DeVaras and Michelle and Billy Jackson opened the 10,000-square-foot space March 3.

"We're catering to small farms and urban farms," says DeVaras. "There's just a real need for feed and garden. A lot of people are sick of going to Lowe's and buying fruit trees from California that die in a couple years."

A walk-through tour, which the staff is providing for newcomers, shows shelving made of re-purposed palettes, and thoughtfulness in every product: Dog food, horse supplies, heirloom non-GMO seeds, cheese-making kits, canning supplies, live chicks, garden beds and greenhouses, soil amendments, tools and so much more.

Soon, the back lot, which also doubles as extra parking, will have a nursery and edibles plants for sale, including 400 fruit trees and 1,000 berry vines, plus more. A bulk soil section allows shoppers to handle the dirt before purchase. Also in the works are more animals for purchase, including quail and meat rabbits.

Toward the back, an education room complete with tables and seating offers reference books to thumb through while shopping, as well as a space for classroom sessions. The topics will range from gardening, to food preservation to poultry care.

"We're offering a lot of different classes ... the full gamut," laughs DeVaras.

The first of three classes on Organic Gardening (spring session) is noon to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 15. The cost is $10 per session, $20 if you register for all three. Pre-registration is encouraged, but drop-ins are welcome.

For more information, visit eastsideurbanfarmandgarden.com.

EASTSIDE URBAN FARM AND GARDEN CENTER, 2326 Fourth Ave., Olympia, 360.972.2933.

March 12, 2014 at 11:03am

U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds and and U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team to joint SkyFest airshow at Fairchild AFB

The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds practice aerial maneuvers above Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. The Air Force's premier flying team will headline SkyFest 2014 May 31 and June 1. Courtesy photo

Airman 1st Class Sam Fogleman of the 92nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs office has the latest on the SkyFest airshow at Fairchild Air Force Base, May 31 and June 1.

Returning to Fairchild for the first time since 2010, the event will be headlined by the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds and U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team.

Static aircraft volunteered to be on display include a B-1 out of Ellsworth Air Force Base, a T-38 and T-6 from Sheppard AFB, a F-15E from Mountain Home AFB, Fairchild's own UH-1 and KC-135, a C-17 from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, a firefighter version of C-130 out of Wyoming Air National Guard Base at F.E. Warren AFB, and a KC-10 from Travis AFB.

More performances and public figure appearances are still being coordinated at this time.

"We do not have a complete list of performers and static displays since we are still in the planning phase," said Maj. Robert Aikman, SkyFest 2014 director. "We are finalizing the list now. We have a tentative list of performers. We have several in the works."

SkyFest's tentative schedule is planned for the airfield opening to visitors at 9 a.m. both days, with performances beginning at 12 p.m.

For more information about SkyFest 2014, visit http://bit.ly/SkyFest.

Filed under: Air Force, Military, News To Us, Events,

March 12, 2014 at 11:57am

Judging by the Trailer: "Need for Speed"

Think adapting "War and Peace" is hard? Try adapting the race car video game "Need for Speed."

I think that the Need for Speed trailer's use of a Muse song is actually quite telling. Just as Muse is the broey, populist, dumbed down take on Radiohead's icy grandiosity, Need for Speed seems likewise to be the juvenile spin on Drive's existential exploration of gearhead machismo.

Still, there's a part of me that wants to root for Need for Speed's success, mostly due to its starring turn from Breaking Bad's Aaron Paul. While Paul is no stranger to film, the closest he's come to a star-making film role was a sizable presence in the remake of The Last House on the Left, as well as an affecting supporting role in the indie alcoholism drama, Smashed. Paul's role as Jesse on Breaking Bad earned him a mountain of good will, and it would be a shame to stumble on his first big movie out of the gate.

So, what is this all about? Aaron Paul stars as a man falsely imprisoned for killing someone with a car (I guess, because there are no guns in movies like this, so people like to Death Proof it up), and has now returned to society to seek revenge. He has a need. A need ... for revenge. And speed. But not speed like meth. Those days are over.

Meanwhile, it looks like national treasure Michael Keaton is to Need for Speed as Samuel L. Jackson is to Do the Right Thing (this will all be on the test later), just keeping a running commentary on the goings-on and telling hotheads to chill. No word yet on who Need for Speed's Radio Raheem will be, but my fingers are crossed for Jason Statham.

Even if this ends up being a turkey, it's unlikely that it will seriously hurt Paul's career (one would hope). The guy still has a couple more movies scheduled for release in 2014, including the Ridley Scott-directed Exodus, which will join the likes of Son of God and Noah in making this an oddly religion-focused year for movies. Still, I might end up giving Need for Speed a shot, if for no other reason than I have always had, and continue to have, a need. A need... for Michael Keaton.

March 12, 2014 at 2:10pm

JBLM 2-2 Stryker Brigade to partner with 62nd Airlift Wing for rapid deployment

This just in from the 2-2 SBCT Public Affairs Office:

The 2-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division and the 62nd Airlift Wing will partner to train on rapid deployment of the 2-2 SBCT platform vehicle, the Stryker.

This is the first time since 2006 that Air Force and Army on JBLM will conduct joint training on the deployment of the armored vehicle.

The 62nd Airlift Wing will deploy approximately 25 Stryker vehicles from the McChord Airfield to an area near the Yakima Training Center, March 17-18.

The crews manning the vehicles will conduct ongoing movement to YTC for scheduled training to support an upcoming deployment to the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, Calif. later this summer.

The training will help prepare Soldiers and Airmen for rapid deployment in support of the Pentagon's shift to the Pacific Theater of Operations. JBLM plays a pivotal role in the Pacific as the largest military installation on the western seaboard.

March 13, 2014 at 7:27am

Thursday Morning Joe: Secretive Pentagon think tank, Marines test women, plug-in satellites, video of alien spaceship...

Treos in Tacoma calls itself the "Third Place" (the "first" being the home, the "second" place being the workplace).


7 things to know about the U.S.'s future in Afghanistan.

Let the military run drone warfare.

The Pentagon is sending more Marines and warplanes to join its emergency response group in Spain. The additions show the growing importance of smaller task forces in an era of shrinking defense budgets.

Secretive Pentagon think tank knows no bounds.

The Marine Corps plans to establish an experimental force consisting of at least 25 percent women in the most far-reaching effort yet to determine how females will perform in ground combat jobs that remain closed to them.

If the Marine Corps is forced to draw down to 175,000 Marines, the "moderate risk" force that's left will be built around fewer infantry battalions with impaired readiness.

Two Gaza-launched rockets evaded Israel's Iron Dome defenses in a stormy evening that rained at least 60 rockets on Israel, five of which hit populated areas.

DARPA hopes to build plug-in satellites in space.

The Air Force has temporarily stopped processing applications for early retirement and voluntary separation to re-assess the costs and gauge the impact on crucial job categories.

Military researchers put dozens of soldiers, both women and men, through a series of drills Wednesday aimed at helping the Army develop a unisex test to decide which troops are fit for combat, regardless of gender.

An independent commission led by a former U.S. surgeon general has concluded there "is no compelling medical reason" for the U.S. armed forces to prohibit transgender Americans from serving.

The F-35 should be known as the fighter that ate the defense budget.

If potential adversaries are to challenge the United States, they must do so in the space domain.

Obama's recent diplomacy in Syria and Russia could be described as "speak loudly and carry a little stick, or no stick at all."

Soldiers should not expect the Army to follow the Marine Corps' recent decision to allow personnel to roll up their sleeves when it gets hot.

List: So many lies, so little time.

Awesome NASA video captures what looks like an alien spaceship.

Yikes: Is this bloody mutant monster a real spider?

Check it out: This is a real island.

Maybe this helps your day...

March 13, 2014 at 7:41am

5 Things To Do Today: 100th Monkey, Tacoma Runners, Ancient Victorys, wine tasting and more ...

Scene from a previous 100th Monkey Tacoma party held at the Tacoma Art Museum. Photo credit: Pappi Swarner

THURSDAY, MARCH 13 2014 >>>

1. One of Tacoma's most popular events makes an epic return today. If you've never been to a 100th Monkey bash, here's what you've been missing: wine, food, art, wine, entertainment and, uh... did we mention wine? Participants bring the food and drinks - including non-alcoholic beverages, as this is an all-ages event - but the rest is provided. The Kim Archer Band supplies the music, and monkey tiles, created by artist Kristina Vallery, will be available for $5 a piece. Get in on the party from 7-9 p.m. at Freighthouse Square's Rainier Ball Room.

2. Proctor District's favorite wine bar Pour at Four hosts complimentary wine tastings. It's a beautiful thing. From 5:30-8 p.m., you may taste six Spanish wines.

3. Think running and drinking don't mix unless there's a K-9 unit involved? Not true. The Tacoma Runners - a group of T-town pavement pounders - meet ever Thursday for a 3-mile loop at a "social pace" at one of Tacoma's favorite watering holes. Tonight at 6:30 p.m. is appropriately the Runners' St. Patrick Day outing - based at Doyle's Public House. Wear green and make a damn fool of yourself.

4. The quarterly Ancient Victorys Open Mike brings back some of the 3,000 acoustic music performers from open mikes run by Chris Lunn in this state and California from the 1965 through 1990 to the Antique Sandwich Co. at 7 p.m. 

5. We've enjoyed Rebecca Lea McCarthy's performances before, most recently in Arsenic and Old Lace at Lakewood Playhouse. Turns out she's an author, too, and her second book, Writing the Diaphragm Blues and Other Sexual Cacophonies, was released in 2012. Her stage play's an adaptation of that work, described by one online reviewer as "(p)art memoir, part feminist scholarship...with just enough dirty jokes to keep it a guilty pleasure." Where the chickens fit in, we have absolutely no idea. Read Christian Carvajal's full feature on Singing the Diaphragm Blues in the Music & Culture section, then catch the performance at 8 p.m. in the 4th Wall Players Theatre in Puyallup.

LINK: Thursday, March 13 arts and entertainment events in the greater Tacoma and Olympia area

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News and entertainment from Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s most awesome weekly newspapers - The Ranger, Northwest Airlifter and Weekly Volcano.

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