Posted by Bob Heck on Jan 29, 2018
Rotary Club of Olympia
The Wheel
Date: 1/22/2018
Today’s Program: Craft Brewing & Distilling Center: Project Update
Meeting Called to Order: President Christy Peters @ 12:20 pm
  • Invocation by: Sam Bovard
  • Pledge of Allegiance led by: Lori Woodland
  • Song: America the Beautiful, led by Allen Miller
  • Four Way Test led by: Victoria Byerly
Visiting Rotarians
  • Scott Michie – Gateway Rotary, Manager of Heritage Bank in Tumwater, WA
  • Matt Hargrave – Lacey Rotary, Timberland Bank
  • Miguel Peneda – West Olympia Rotary
  • Jim Goddard (Son of Jewel Goddard) Denver Rotary #31
Guests of Rotarians
  • Heather Antanaitis (Guest of Maureen Considine) – Non-Profit Development Officer, and potential club member
  • Dylan Parsons (Guest of Guest of Jim Balz) – Craft District, LLC
  • Mike Parsons (Guest of Guest of Jim Balz) – Craft District, LLC
  • Eileen Thomson (Guest of Cheryl Selby) – Former Olympia School Board President
Rotary Community Grant Committee – Mark Elliot announced the final three grant recipients for this grant cycle:
  • GRuB: The grant will support outreach and engagement programming and supplies. Attending on behalf of the organization were: Malorie Shellmer, Masson Josiah, and Zion Passmore.
  • Little Red School House: The grant will support purchasing over 225 backpacks that will be used to distribute supplies in August. In the last 7 years, the organization has supported over 23,000 individuals. Our Rotary Club has been a tremendous supporter for the better part of two decades. Attending on behalf of the organization was: Judy Kimeldorf.
  • South Sound Estuary Association: The grant will support the annual internship program. Each year between 4-6 individuals are able to participate as interns at the association. In addition to programming at their downtown site, they hold talks at LOTT and on-site learning opportunities around the South Sound (in the water). Attending on behalf of the organization was: Sasha Medlen.
Pub Night – will be Thursday, Feb 1 from 4pm – 6pm. Keep an eye out for an email from Kyle Cronk for details the location.
Olympia School District Technology Levy Update – OSD Superintendent and club member Patrick Murphy updated the club on the details of the levy request:
  • It is a replacement levy, not an increase, and due to changes in state funding, while an increase, the overall tax will go down slightly for those paying school district taxes.
  • The levy was led by a committee of over 30 individuals (students, parents, community members, educators and district staff), they surveyed over 2,000 individuals to develop the core levy objectives.
  • The major goal of the levy is to support equitable access to technology for every student in the district. In addition to providing physical devices, there will be an expansion of online learning options, an expansion of internet access and training for parents, staff and students.
  • A component of the levy will also support safety and safety-related technology (GPS monitors on school buses, for example).
  • Questions can be directed to the school district for further information. Ballots were mailed on Monday. If you live in the Olympia School District, you’ll likely have a chance to vote for this levy.
Golden Bear Award – Anthony Brock introduced Maryann Lang, an English teacher from Olympia High School. Ms. Lang nominated Sara Gindy as the Golden Bear recipient. Sara was in Mrs. Lang’s sophomore honors English class.  Since meeting her several years ago, Ms. Lang     has experienced Sara’s commitment to both academics and volunteering over the past several years. Sara is a member of STAND and is a three-time participant in Shirts Across America. A non-profit that is focused on service work and rebuilding the New Orleans, LA community. She is planning to attend NYU or USC and plans to pursue a career in screenwriting, focusing on diversity issues.
Program: Craft Brewing and Distilling – A special update on the Craft Brewing and Distilling Center.
Chuck Fowler introduced our speakers, Heidi Behrends Cerniway, Assistant City Administrator for the City of Tumwater and John Peters, who is an environmental engineer, developer and part-owner of Craft District, LLC. Heidi and John provided a broad update of the project scope and vision.
Tumwater has seen some significant advancements in their efforts to #BringBrewingBack.  At the heart of the initiative is an economic development strategy that will help continue the legacy of the Tumwater Brewery. According to Heidi, the city is working to support entrepreneurs, grow businesses and the craft beverage market, to establish the region as the center for excellence for craft beer, cider, and spirits. As a strategy, the City will follow the model used in Walla Walla, WA. They will seek to create an environment where employees/owners/artisans can secure the education they need to learn the craft, and then expand into smaller brewery operations and eventually into full-scale brewery/cidery/distilling sites.
South Puget Sound Community College will be an anchor tenant. In Fall 2018 they will formally launch the Craft Brewing Certificate/Degree program. The City wants to make spaces available to support all phases of the craft brewing industry. This will take place by strategically co-locating areas the support the industry from inception to mature businesses. The warehouse district and craft district are two areas important to this vision.
John Peters is a partner in the Craft District project, a development which will house several craft businesses on the former Olympia and Miller brewery property.  South Puget Sound Community College will lease space for their new Brewing, Distilling, and Cider-making program on-site, along with a distillery, Heritage Distilling Company, a brewery, a cidery, and several other craft businesses (to be announced soon), and a number of public amenities.
John shared that what is now the Craft District came about after a tour of the Parsons Family Farm site. On the site, John and Parsons Family focused on building community partnerships, historic restoration and regeneration development. They built a local working farm. This year, Top Rung Brewery purchased some of their hops from the Parsons Family Farm. It was during the tour of Parsons Family Farm by members of the City of Tumwater and SPSCC administration that both groups saw the benefit to this type of development and, literally, the seeds to the Craft District were planted.
The vision for the Craft District project is to view the development as a “social asset” – to support both the social and economic needs of the community by investing locally. When initially drafted, the site was for two buildings, it is now 6 with an amphitheater. It will include mixed use space for retail, manufacturing and community building. The event space will be over 3,000 square feet and include an industrial kitchen.
Mr. Snappy: Steve Ryan won a $25 gift certificate to Spuds Market donated by Tammy Adams.
Meeting Adjourned: 1:30pm by President Christy Peters.