MultiCare signs to acquire Capital Medical Center

MultiCare Health System has entered into an agreement to purchase the majority ownership interest in Capital Medical Center in Olympia from subsidiaries of LifePoint Health, a holding company based in Tennessee. 

Capital Medical Center is a full-service, 107-bed community hospital that opened in 1985 and serves communities in Olympia, as well as Thurston, Mason, Lewis and Grays Harbor counties. When this purchase is complete, MultiCare will have the majority ownership interest in Capital Medical Center. A small percentage of the ownership of Capital Medical Center (less than 10 percent) is held by a group of community physicians. Current plans are for the physicians to maintain these ownership interests, but this could change in connection with the transaction closing.

The agreement comes after nearly two years of discussion between LifePoint Health and MultiCare, as well as a rigorous review process that included evaluating the hospital’s finances, quality, compliance status, facilities and technology, as well as employee and provider relationships.

MultiCare has offered an array of services in the Olympia and Thurston County region since the late 1990s when we opened a Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital satellite clinic in Olympia. Today the services we provide in the greater Olympia area include pediatric care, laboratory services, OB/GYN care, orthopedics and sports medicine, cardiac care through Pulse Heart Institute and urgent care services at a number of Indigo Urgent Care locations.

Capital Medical Center — which will become MultiCare Capital Medical Center after the acquisition is finalized — will be an important addition to the organization. It will allow MultiCare to partner with more patients and more communities; have a larger impact statewide as an essential system of health; and give MultiCare greater ability to help shape the future of health care in the Pacific Northwest.

Despite the challenges we’ve faced in 2020, we are continuing our journey to become the Pacific Northwest’s highest value system of health. Over the years MultiCare has been a good steward of our organization’s resources, giving us the financial reserves we need to continue to invest in our existing organizations and services, to develop new clinical services, and to further extend our services into new geographic regions.

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 in your local laws and government. Register online, by mail, or call for assistance until eight days before an election.
sos.wa.gov/elections

Get Your Furry Friend a Pierce County License

Believe it or not, your pet is considered a member of the community too! Please register your pet as soon as possible after you’ve moved into the County. You can register online or call.
piercecountywa.gov

Learn Your Public Transportation Options

People are definitely going places in Pierce County, and not just with their own vehicle. Look into Pierce Transit, local taxi options and Sea-Tac Airport.
piercetransit.org
portofseattle.org

Update Your Driver’s License

This is possibly the most urgent on the list of things to take care of during a new move. Visit your local DMV within ten days of moving to update your personal information with your new Pierce County address. Be sure to follow County safety regulations.

Need more information? Check out details online.
dol.wa.gov

By Nicole Benson

Dancing Goats – Opens at Point Ruston

When Dancing Goats ® Coffee Roasters opens its 10th location in the Point Ruston Public Market in mid-December, Tacoma residents will be treated to a great coffee house named after a sweet legend.

The Dancing Goats legend says that in the remote highlands of ninth century Abyssinia, now Ethiopia, a lone goat herder named Kaldi noticed his goats were full of energy, dancing and prancing after eating a small, red fruit from a nearby shrub. Not wishing to be left out of the fun, he ate the cherries and soon he was dancing too.  Kaldi and his goats had discovered coffee!

According to the Operations Director for Dancing Goats Coffee Bar, Aaron Shively, “Coffee is our priority.  Fostering relationships with coffee producers is at the core of everything we do.”  The Buyer for Batdorf & Bronson ® Coffee Roasters, Dancing Goats’ parent company from Olympia, visits coffee farmers around the world multiple times a year.  These visits cultivate long-lasting relationships and ensure the fabled Dancing Goats blend continues to make its mark at coffee bars, cafes and restaurants across the country.

The Dancing Goats blend will be the house espresso of choice for the new Public Market location.  Unlike many other coffee blends, the Dancing Goats blend brews well as espresso, drip or any way you want to brew it up.  Baristas at Dancing Goat Coffee Bars strive to give customers the highest-level coffee as well as service.  “We want our customers to have a great first experience and come back time and again,” said Shively.

“One of our favorite tag lines is taste our coffee and meet our people,” said Retail Operations Manager Krista Bentow.  “We encourage our people to provide outstanding customer service in an approachable, down-to-earth way; not as a coffee snob or a purist.” 

Dancing Goat Coffee Bar will be located just inside the main entrance to the Ruston Public Market.  During the summer months, watch for the roll up doors on the north side to be open for walk-up orders in the outdoor seating area.  Visit them starting in December or on-line at dancinggoats.com

Dr. Finch Joins Tumwater Eye Center

Devin Finch, O.D., says the timing couldn’t have been better for him to join Dr. Douglas Jeske and the team at Tumwater Eye Center. In July 2020, Dr. Finch completed a residency in ocular diseases at Thomas E. Creek VA Medical Center in Texas after earning his doctorate in optometry the year prior from Pacific University College of Optometry in Oregon. At Tumwater Eye Center, the team recently moved into an expanded facility offering state-of-the-art eye care technology, equipment, and additional services.

“I’ve known Dr. Jeske for several years and I’m glad to work with him to provide high quality eye care to the community,” said Finch. “The team is friendly and personable, and the new facility has been designed to include top notch diagnostic equipment that helps to identify eye health issues sooner.”

In addition to providing comprehensive eye exams to assess the health of his patients’ eyes, Dr. Finch has clinical interests in treating retinal pathologies, dry eye disease, and glaucoma. He is especially committed to helping pediatric patients control myopia (nearsightedness) to prevent the condition from becoming unmanageable or becoming the catalyst for eye diseases later in life. Adults with moderate to high levels of myopia have an increased risk of blindness from cataracts, retinal degeneration, and glaucoma. A myopia control treatment plan, which could include the use of medicated eye drops or contact lenses, can slow down or stop the progression of myopia in children, improving their quality of life.

An Olympia native, Dr. Finch was glad to return to his hometown to be near his parents and friends throughout the Puget Sound. He enjoys traveling to foreign countries and spent time in Japan during his medical training and in Guatemala on a mission trip to provide eye care to those in need. Chile and Peru are places he hopes to visit soon.

JULIE LEYDELMEYER

For Additional Information
tumwatereye.com

Make Your Home Cozy

Many of us think about making improvements to our home. New furniture and décor are a quick and easy way to spruce up your surroundings. At Courtyard Antiques and Home Decor, they offer vintage pieces that you will not find elsewhere.

According to owner Laurie Johnson, “Antiques can be mixed in with even highly contemporary pieces to give a room a warm glow. We show customers how to work antiques into their design aesthetic and that your design doesn’t have to be all one or the other.”

Creating a vignette or fun display using a family heirloom or something you purchase from one of the 30 vendors at the 10,000 square foot mall can be just the thing you need to get your home “cozy and company ready”. And, shopping at Courtyard Antiques and Home Décor during the holiday season is a magical experience where each of the unique vendors strive to create a cozy, festive environment. The large collection of vendors means that there are many styles and a huge variety of furniture and décor to select from including farmhouse, industrial, mid century modern, cottage and Asian. It is also a great place to find special one-of-a-kind gifts.

Under the new ownership of Johnson, who was a vendor in the mall for 15 years prior to purchasing, Courtyard Antiques has been facing the challenges of operating a small business during a pandemic. Altering their business model to include more social media shopping with photos of the ever-changing inventory and adding curbside pick-up was a must. Johnson credits the success of Courtyard Antiques during these past few months to the supportive vendors who are passionate about what they do and the service and products they provide. Curbside pick-up will be available through the holiday season.

Courtyard Antiques also carries a full line of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint® products with a paint studio offering classes on how to transform or repurpose your furniture and kitchen cabinets.

LYNN CASTLE

For Additional Information
courtyardantiquesolympia.com

FARM 12: Giving Back Step by Step

At the old Van Lierop Bulb Farm #12 in the beautiful Puyallup Valley, there is a first-class, full-service restaurant and event venue where 100% of the profits go to a charity called Step By Step.

Step by Step’s growing organization needed a new location to support their expanding programs, and they saw a unique opportunity to preserve a beloved farm site and repurpose it to support and serve the surrounding community. When they purchased the farm in 2015, the Step By Step family didn’t have a history of running a farm or growing flowers. They had been growing something else – strong families. For over 20 years, this nonprofit organization had been holistically serving and supporting low-income and at-risk mothers and families, working to help empower them to overcome adversity and work towards brighter futures.

While it remains a familiar Puyallup location, the farm had a broad new vision for the future. Each building on the farm was repurposed, and the site is now home to the Germaine Korum Center, named after the founding donors for the project. Step By Step’s headquarters are here, as well as a family counseling and educational center, job training and workforce preparation facility, a culinary training program, a greenhouse – where flowers still grow – and, Farm 12 Restaurant.

Today, the farm has been transformed into a renewed place with purpose, one that will offer a unique and beautiful space to enrich lives and holistically strengthen families in our community – for generations to come. Step By Step’s Founder and Executive Director, Krista Linden, says she loves the quote, “You cannot be anything you want to be – but you can be a lot more of who you already are.” She says that the focus becomes helping women to find out what they are naturally good at and help them hone skills in that area.

There are many fun activities to do at Farm 12, ways to be involved and opportunities to support the mission. You can host your party or event at the rustic barn, elegant event hall, or Loveland greenhouse, all of which combine to offer a variety of unique and beautiful backdrops, including a sweeping outdoor view of Mt. Rainier. Or simply visit and enjoy a lunch or breakfast at Farm 12.

Farm 12 is a farm-to-family restaurant that empowers people to eat well and do good. Made from scratch, their food is wholesome, thoughtfully prepared, and often inspired by fresh ingredients sourced from local farms. All activities go to support women and families through Step by Step.

LEAH GROUT

For Additional Information
farm12.org
stepbystepfamily.org

Home makeover: Going for the Gold

A hot new trend is adding gold or brass accents to a room to add warmth. After living in their home for a little over a year, Gig Harbor residents turned to Signature Design & Cabinetry to do a redesign and makeover of their bathroom. Their vision was to go from small and dark to a dramatic and bold mid-century modern bathroom with lots of storage space.

“The project was completed in a few months and the cabinetry was on-time, within budget, and so very beautiful,” say the homeowners. “Our new enhanced storage space is so incredible. The result is a warm and welcoming new space.”

“Crystal Delgado of Signature Design & Cabinetry has amazing vision; she really listened and exceeded my design expectations.”

For Additional Information
signaturedesignandcabinetry.com

PHOTOS BY MILLER PHOTO

Tumwater Eye Center’s New Facility

At the new location of Tumwater Eye Center, Dr. Douglas Jeske and his wife, Karen, have created a distinctive look and customer experience for their patients. This new facility, located at 6510 Capitol Boulevard SE, features state-of-the-art eye care technology and equipment.

With the help of Orca Construction, Quincy Home Interior Design, and Tovani Hart Architecture, the Jeskes turned a 1950’s home office into a classic, yet contemporary eye clinic. On the exterior of the building there are large overhanging eaves, created with sustainable hardwood and composite siding materials, creating a uniquely Northwestern style which adds depth and character to the building. Upon entering, you are greeted by the warm, welcoming open-design entry featuring vaulted ceilings and extensive windows that flood the space with natural light. The optical display cabinets use beautiful LED illumination and textured laminates to enhance the international frame collection. Noted elements of the design feature budding birch cabinetry harvested from sustainable crops, sliding office door enclosures, and natural linens encased in a recyclable resin.

Beyond the beauty of the location, Tumwater Eye Center features extensive use of technology to create a unique patient experience. Dr. Jeske uses premium computerized refracting equipment to create precise vision corrections. The vision concerns of patients are solved using the most current contacts and progressive lens designs and materials, including blue light blocking lenses. Qualified and compassionate staff help patients through state-of-the-art digital and infra-red retinal imaging and dark adaptation testing to allow early diagnosis of eye disease. Computer monitors in each exam room allow patients to observe images of their own eyes as Dr. Jeske offers practical education on eye health. The practice is also on the cutting edge of telemedicine, which allows remote patient examination with the simplicity of FaceTime.

For Additional Information

Visit their new location at 6510 Capitol Blvd SE, Tumwater or online at tumwatereye.com.

LYNN CASTLE

Homeless Backpack Heroes

How often do people consider if the homeless person sleeping in an exposed area is an adolescent? Or when was the last time a homeless adolescent had a decent meal? “Homeless Backpacks provide weekend food to homeless students,” founding board member of Homeless Backpacks, Kelly Wilson, says. Homeless Backpacks serves over half a dozen school districts in Washington.

The story of the organization starts with a group of women getting together to discuss what they could do for the homeless back in the early 2000s. The discussion led to each woman bringing a practical item to the next meeting to fill 20 backpacks.

“Back in 2006 when we started the program, the food was put into plastic grocery bags,” says Wilson. “It was obvious that there was food in the bags, so we provided each student being served a backpack to put the weekend food bag into. The student would walk into the counselor’s office with an empty backpack and walk out with a bag of food inside of it.”

When plastic bags were banned in Thurston County, Wilson and her team invested in an alternative bag that is thicker and heavier. “The cost of that bag is covered by bag sponsors who pay to put their logo on the bags,” Wilson explains.

“These bags are much thicker, so it is not obvious that it is a bag of food.”

Homeless Backpacks serves 573 students per week at $8 a bag; the recent cost has increased due to food cost increases. The organization doesn’t rely on government or grant funding, but instead depends on schools, churches, businesses, and two fundraisers they host each year to raise money and awareness. Unfortunately, this year’s fundraisers have been cancelled due to the pandemic and limitations on public social gatherings. “Homeless Backpack’s mission is to ‘End Homelessness One Face at a Time.’ ” says Wilson.

JORDAN MARIE MCCAW

Homeless Backpacks
homelessbackpacks.org

The Lasagna Lady spreads Love

As a youth growing up in the Bay Area of California, Michelle Brenner enjoyed big, traditional Sunday dinners with family. When lasagna was served, it usually accompanied an occasion of sorts and brought back warm memories. When she witnessed people buying store-bought, commercially made lasagnas as part of their pandemic meals, the Gig Harbor resident felt compelled to make an incredible offer via Facebook: She would make a lasagna free of charge for anyone who wanted one.

Eight weeks later, Brenner has made over 1,060 lasagnas, surpassing her original goal of making 1,000 total in eight weeks. Her small gesture has grown into a regional phenomenon. People order lasagnas to be sent to hospitals, fire fighters, senior centers, essential retailers, and even prisons. While Brenner says her lasagna may be no better or worse than others’ homemade lasagna, it comes right from her heart. Each pan has a bit of a different journey to reach its happy recipient, and Brenner is equally happy to continue making them.

“The lasagna is really only a small part of the story. The biggest part of the story is the connections I am making between people during this situation,” Brenner said. While she makes all the lasagna alone, other people who want to help do so by buying and delivering her supplies. More and more people are offering their support and help as she continues to provide delicious lasagnas to the community. Recently, the Gig Harbor Sportsman’s Club even offered her use of their commercial kitchen, which has improved Brenner’s capabilities immensely.

With the ingredients for each lasagna estimated at $16-19, depending on how successful her shopping in bulk is accomplished, Brenner hopes to raise money now that she has reached her goal of making 1,000 lasagnas. And as long as supplies continue to hold out, she can be found in her kitchen, spreading lasagna love. “Maybe this was my true calling. Something I was always meant to do. It took an awful thing to open this door.”

LYNN CASTLE

The Lasagna Lady
facebook.com/michellebrenner