New Neighbor Guide Winter-Spring 2020

Publisher’s Letter

Welcome to the New Neighbors Guide!

On behalf of the local community, we welcome you to Pierce County. Whether you’re here temporarily or for the long haul, we know you’re going to love our region. With our natural beauty, lakes, streams and forested trails, this is the perfect location for outdoor fun. With some of the best coffee in the world and a vibrant food and entertainment scene, Pierce County has something for everyone.

Let’s face it, moving to a new city can be expensive and time-consuming—but it’s also exciting! This guide is written by a mix of perspectives from native Pierce Countians to people who moved here from out of the area. We created this guide with the things we wish we had known when we moved here.

This resource guide offers tips and reminders to get you settled and to get the nuts and bolts of your new home well underway. This guide will also help you get connected to your local community, schools and healthcare, and help you put down “roots” in your daily life here. From great ideas for your home and events to engage in the community, we have you covered.

As we put together this issue, we look forward to providing you with information and education about all the “best things” in Pierce County and we hope to give you a sense of place where you belong and can engage and feel connected. We welcome you, our “new neighbor,” to Pierce County.
Kindest regards,

Robin Lucas, Publisher

This Issue’s Content

Welcome to Pierce County!

You’re a new resident of beautiful Pierce County — congratulations! But now there are some important tasks to take care of. Updating personal information is essential in order to become a productive part of your community. Listed below are some of the critical assignments for new residency. Register to Vote in your County Get involved […]

Living in Pierce County

Vibrant and diverse, Pierce County is made up of over 20 cities, including urban Tacoma, charming Gig Harbor and home of the Washington State Fair, Puyallup. The County is composed of historic structures and buildings, breathtaking waterfront views, lush rural land, quaint and welcoming suburbs, an ever-industrious energy, and is the neighbor to magnificent Mount […]

The Legacy of Lucky LeMay

Driving around Tacoma you may notice more than the usual number of classic cars. The love of the automobile runs deep here. Tacoma is home to two museums devoted to the automobile and multiple car shows throughout the year. These are due, in large part, to the LeMay family. Harold “Lucky” LeMay, who was voted […]

Enrolling in School in Pierce County

Choosing the best academic environment for your child can seem daunting when you move to a new area. There are numerous traditional options to consider—your neighborhood public school, a charter school, or private school—in addition to alternative options, like online school or homeschool. In this era of COVID-19, parents may feel additionally worried about making […]

Giving Back in the 253

In any community, a sense of “community” is built on the connections made through unique groups of people that support one another. When I moved to Tacoma five years ago, I was wanting to know my neighbors, to feel that my community supported one another, and to find ways to give back. Quickly, I learned […]

Living Loud in the Wake of a Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic turned everyone’s world upside down and brought many businesses to a standstill, particularly those in the restaurant and hospitality industry. Anthem Coffee Company, a family-owned and operated small business headquartered in Puyallup, shut down their eight locations across the South Puget Sound for 40 days in the spring of 2020 to help […]

Making Your House A Home

Tips to transform a house into a home with decor and furniture from the heart Your entry is the initial introduction to your home and sets the stage for you and your guests. Place a cozy rug or floor mat inside the door to define the entry and give an immediate sense of personality. A […]

Olympic Landscape: Heart For Community

Olympic Landscape has been designing, building and servicing outdoor residential and commercial spaces in the South Sound for more than 40 years. As an expert landscape contractor, the company creates beautiful outdoor living spaces, unique gathering spaces, and specially-themed gardens for homes and businesses. The owner and CEO, Joe Areyano, plans to continue that legacy. […]

Getting Settled into a New Home

After the last box is moved into your new home, you might think the hardest part of moving is over. And you’re right, but there are still things to take care of before you can relax completely.  Get Your Utilities Set Up You don’t want to arrive at your new place, late at night, and […]

Tacoma Mall Expands with New Retailers

Long known as a community leader in shopping, dining, and entertainment, Tacoma Mall has recently announced plans to further elevate the shopping experience. Looking forward to the 2020 holiday season, the Mall will introduce Nordstrom Rack, Ulta, and Marcus Theatres. These additions are expected to be the beginning of a larger redevelopment in the Tacoma […]

Changing Lives One Smile at a Time

Braces are a rite of passage that preteens and adolescents have endured for decades. Many of us have vivid memories of painful extractions, wires poking our inner cheeks and headgear worn in unflattering photos. Those traumas are a thing of the past for patients at Molen Orthodontics. The family business has created confident smiles in […]

Physical Therapy with Fun & Family

Owners Kim Bisson and Susan Jankelson wanted to create a clinic that felt like home. Their goal was for each person who walked through the doors, whether patient or employee, to feel like part of the family. Welcome home to Rainier Family Physical Therapy. What started over a cup of coffee in 2007 has transformed […]

Health Starts Where We Live, Work and Play

Healthy choices should be convenient choices for everyone in Western Washington. That’s why Pierce County medical providers are helping families live healthier lives, through programs and services in medical clinics and hospitals throughout our communities. Tacoma health care quality comes down to access, affordability and outcomes. Out of 39 counties in Washington, Pierce County ranks […]

Service and Convenience at Light Dental

We can all agree on the qualities for the ideal dental provider: round-the-clock service, free consultations, same-day appointments, entire-family bookings, empathetic service and affordable care. It’s nearly impossible to find a full combination of such attributes. But then there’s Light Dental Studios. Based in Puyallup, the dentist-owned company—with 16 locations in the South Puget Sound—has […]

Asian-Inspired Food, Beautiful Ambiance

From the moment you enter Indochine, you feel as though you have been transported to an exotic locale. The indoor water feature fills an unassuming fish pond surrounded by rich wooden tables and benches. Warm lighting and Asian-inspired décor help set the mood. And an open floor plan invites guests to interact with one another. […]

The Harbor History Museum

Nestled on the Gig Harbor waterfront where Donkey Creek meets the bay, the Harbor History Museum is celebrating its 10th year of operation. Yet the Museum’s campus has a much deeper history, reflecting the site’s logging mill and power company past and includes the 1893 Midway Schoolhouse and 65-foot fishing boat, Shenandoah. Step through the […]

The Importance of Play in Childhood Development

2020 has presented families with so many challenges. Parents are expected to work from home while taking care of their children, among other stressors. Early in the pandemic, daycares, activities, and playgrounds all shut down. Unfortunately, these events led to many children entertaining themselves with more screen time. Let’s focus on the most important activity […]

Northwest Winter Safety Tips for Seniors

During the winter months, slippery sidewalks and cold weather can cause a wide range of injuries and illnesses, especially for seniors. The following tips will help prevent common cold-weather dangers faced by the elderly population. Avoid slipping on ice. Icy, snowy roads and sidewalks make it easy to slip and fall. These falls often cause […]