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Press Release - Mar 29, 2012       Back   Download
TACOMA'S FREIGHTHOUSE SQUARE COMES BACK TO LIFE WITH 22 RETAIL STORES AND RESTAURANTS AND A FREE FAMILY ARTS EVENT THIS SATURDAY

"I CAN! All Ages Family Arts Celebration" on Saturday, March 31, includes a visit from Mayor Strickland, Legos, Magic, Painting, Photography, Music, Storytelling, a Book Show and MORE!

March 28, 2012 (Tacoma) Freighthouse Square is being rejuvenated by 22 retail stores and restaurants, and a new annual event that returns the iconic Tacoma mall to its tradition of showcasing local artists, local businesses and family entertainment. The first annual I CAN! Event (Interactive Community Arts Network) All Ages Family Arts Celebration will be held at Freighthouse Square on Saturday, March 31, from 10 a.m. to 4 pm, designed to bring local artists and entertainment, and local families back to this historic venue. Admission is free and includes painting and photography exhibits, music, magic and storytelling, as well as hands-on activities for creative minds.

The event is designed to inspire visits, renewed interest and development to an iconic Tacoma attraction that has experienced a recent surge in regeneration and growth in anticipation of the 500,000 additional visitors expected to the Tacoma Dome district in the coming year due to the opening of the LeMay Museum in June. Since January, twenty-two retail stores and restaurants have opened or remain open at Freighthouse Square, and more have signed lease agreements to open soon.

"These very talented artists and performers from our local community have banded together to create an event that should motivate families to come out and have fun, be inspired and shop locally," said Tacoma mayor Marilyn Strickland, who will be visiting the event this Saturday. "I CAN! is an example of the change happening in Tacoma residents' thinking and behavior to 'go local' that benefits everyone."

Tamara Clammer, a "Doer" for Brown Paper Tickets, created the I CAN! event after she visited Freighthouse Square in January and was saddened by its decline from a once-vibrant community hub of artists, foods and entertainment. She was moved to help Freighthouse Square to bring life and more of the arts back to the place that had a great impact on her when she first visited this incubator for local business more than 20 years ago. Tamara's position as a "Doer" means that she is paid by Brown Paper Tickets to advance projects that help to stimulate growth and development in the Artist/Maker community. Her decision to help Freighthouse Square was motivated by her desire to protect and rebuild what has been a vibrant forum for local artists to share and sell their creations for more than a century.

"We could not be more pleased to host the I CAN! event" said Lonee Peschon, Freighthouse Square's onsite manager. "I CAN! taps into our long history as a center for local artists and as a community gathering place for Pierce County families. It is our hope that as we continue down this road of rejuvenating and reviving this beautiful building that it will once again become a destination of choice for those looking for its eclectic, artsy, gritty, unique blend of vendors, restaurants and artist showcases, and a must-see attraction for those already visiting the Tacoma Dome/LeMay Museum neighborhood."

Built as the westernmost stop for the Milwaukee Railroad, Freighthouse Square has been a Tacoma landmark for over 100 years. The building is three city blocks long and five stories tall, and is home to a unique blend of locally-owned food vendors, artists, merchants and business services. In addition, it offers an opportunity to revel in a bit of Tacoma's history, just two blocks west of the Tacoma Dome and the LeMay Museum.

"Like a phoenix, Freighthouse Square is coming back," said Peschon. "The more traffic we can attract to events such as I CAN!, the more people in the community will be exposed to this historical iconic location and see the positive changes and experience we are now creating." Since January, fourteen new leases of offices and retail spaces have been signed, and two restaurants, The Boxcar Grill and Seasonal Delights Café, have reopened. "We are hoping that the families who visit us for Saturday's event will remember us next time they are in the Tacoma Dome district and want to extend their fun-filled day, or are seeking a special somewhere to visit and enjoy."

Here is a list of events that will happen during the "I CAN! All Ages Family Arts Celebration".

Check back to http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/231586 or to http://www.facebook.com/freighthousesquare for specific show times.

*LEGO and DUPLO building areas with City Blocks
*Watercolor Painting with Lucy Schwartz
*Comedic Stage Magic with our Emcee, Just Sage
*Artistic Photography by Dayton Knipher
*Acoustic Music with Heidi Stoermer
*Creative Storytelling with Ryan Henry Ward
*Recycled Materials Art Projects with Suni Cook-Boucher
*Author Readings by NorthwestAuthors.org
*Northwest Authors' Spring Book Show
*Giant Checkers
*Scavenger Hunt

And much more!

About Freighthouse Square: Built as the westernmost stop for the Milwaukee Railroad, Freighthouse Square (http://www.freighthousesquare.com) has been a Tacoma landmark for over 100 years. The building is three city blocks long and five stories tall, and is home to a unique blend of locally-owned food vendors, artists, merchants and business services. In addition, it offers an opportunity to revel in a bit of Tacoma's history, just two blocks west of the Tacoma Dome and the LeMay Museum.

About Brown Paper Tickets: Brown Paper Tickets (http://www.BrownPaperTickets.com) is the world's only Fair Trade ticketing company, designed to help people to easily produce and attend events. The company embraces a code of ethics that honors producers, communities, consumers, and the environment, and a business model rooted in people-to-people connections, justice, and sustainability. Take less. Give more. Be a good neighbor. Brown Paper Tickets offers 100% free ticketing to event producers, a low, affordable fee for ticket buyers, a 24-hour customer hotline, free event planning and promotion assistance and donation of a portion of all profits to charity. Brown Paper Tickets has become a model for Not-Just-For-Profit sustainable business that cares about people over profit, works smart, gives back, positively influences our communities, and hopes to inspire other businesses to do the same.

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NOTE TO MEDIA: If you would like to interview anyone associated with this story, or send a photographer to this event, contact Barb Morgen at barb@brownpapertickets.com.
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