Pierce Pioneer

Crafting With Kyla, testing out last minute valentine’s day crafts

Hanukkah Dishes for the Holidays

A list of dishes and recipes for those looking to diversify their tables for this year’s holidays.

The holidays are a lovely time of year for everyone, as well for me; Hanukkah is an especially great time of year because it means some of the tastiest dishes of our culture get to be indulged in for eight days. Here is a list of all my personal favorite foods to eat during Hanukkah and what makes them so special!




What it is: Braised beef.
What it means: Chances are you’ve already heard of brisket, it’s a popular meat all over the world. My grandma used to serve brisket at all of our holidays, Hanukkah, Passover, etc. The braising of the meat makes it tender and juicy and very flavorful, making it a year-round favorite for the community.



What it is: Milk chocolate circles wrapped in colored foil that resemble Jewish coins.
What it means: Gelt is something akin to an edible poker chip for anyone playing a game of dreidel. Everyone starts out with about 10 pieces of gelt and then takes turns spinning the dreidel, depending on which of the four sides it lands on you’ll either take all the gelt in the pile, take half of the gelt in the pile, lose all your gelt, or do nothing and move on to the next person. Aside from being a game currency, gelt is also gifted to children during the holidays.

Gelt can be bought from a multitude of places in Pierce County, including the Cost Plus World Market in Tacoma and Party City in Lakewood. Gelt can also be ordered on Amazon.




What it is: Fried dough stuffed with either meat or potatoes.
What it means: Unlike the other items on this list, knishes are a more unorthodox choice for Hanukkah, but since they’re usually fried I like to eat them around this time of year. In theory, stuffing a pastry full of mashed potatoes or ground beef may sound strange, but really knishes are just the Jewish version of an empanada or a samosa.




What it is: Fried potato pancakes, usually topped with applesauce and sour cream.
What it means: Next to matzo, latkes are somewhat of a staple dish in the Jewish community; they’re easy to make and a lot of regular grocery stores carry the ingredients or even have latke mix to make them. On Hanukkah latkes are one of the stars of the show since they are fried in oil, but they also make for a delicious breakfast with some cold applesauce and sour cream to complement this hot dish.


What it is: Powdered jelly donuts.
What it means: Sufganiyot, pronounced soof-gah-nee-ah or soof-gah-nee-oht, are little fried balls of dough filled with jelly or sometimes custard and they are almost exclusive to Hanukkah. Like regular doughnuts, sufganiyot can be made differently and depending on where you go, they can range from pretty basic to very extravagant; but, in my opinion, you can’t go wrong with the classics.

Moving here was a bit of a culture shock for me, I didn’t realize how used I was to being surrounded by stores and delis that had everything my family needed until I was over a thousand miles away from it. 

Even though the Jewish community here is small, it still exists and with several places in Seattle like Dingfelders and Zyldberschteins that have some classic Jewish soul-food. So whether you’re a fellow Jew looking to reach out to another member of the community or you’re just looking to expand your culinary horizons, don’t be afraid to spice up the holiday season with a few new dishes this year!

Snackless in Seclusion

贺 朱 / Courtesy Photo / Pixabay

Food Insecurity in Washington during Quarantine

What do you do when you’re hungry? Do you search for a snack at home? If there’s nothing at home, do you drive to a restaurant, sit down inside and enjoy the atmosphere?

What would you do if you were a child who was in desperate need of a meal? Your resources at home are dependent upon what your parents, guardians or other caregivers can provide. On top of that, you can’t drive to a restaurant yourself because you’re too young. 

Youth who depend on school-provided nutrition might be forced to go hungry as COVID-19 becomes a larger threat. To limit the spread of COVID-19 throughout Washington state, many institutions have been forced to close. Some of these institutions, such as schools, provide vital nourishment for low-income families. 

Groups like the Clover Park School District and Nourish Pierce County are risking their own safety and health to provide meals for students in need, despite the governor’s mandate to stay at home. 

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee released a number of statements, encouraging Washingtonians to respond to the gravity of the growing pandemic by reimagining what their everyday life could look like and reinforcing a new norm. “If we are living a normal life, we are not doing our jobs as Washingtonians,” Inslee said. “We need to make changes, regardless of size… This is the new normal.” Most recently, Inslee announced the “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order, which requires all Washingtonians to stay home unless they are pursuing an essential activity. 

Some of Inslee’s earliest mandates include banning all events of 250 people or more, closing all K-12 schools and limiting face-to-face contact at post-secondary schools. All bars, restaurants, and entertainment facilities have been ordered to temporarily shut their doors to patrons. 

With these mandates, it is expected the state will see an increase in demand for childcare and food resources. With children out of school, parents, guardians, and caregivers are forced to either find alternative childcare or stay home from work themselves. As social distancing measures increase to slow the spread of the virus, the U.S. economy might begin to slow down.

During this time, families that depend on free and reduced lunch programs through their local school district may be caught off-guard, and in need of vital nourishment. Many local groups are trying to support these communities with less food security and resources. 

One such support group is the Student Nutrition and Transportation departments within the Clover Park School District. CPSD operates within Lakewood and parts of Joint Base Lewis-McChord and encompasses the Pierce Fort Steilacoom campus. On their website, CPSD reported that their district serves over 12,000 students between the ages of 5 and 18. Of these students, 71 percent qualify for and benefit from the free and reduced lunch program. 

During the governor-mandated school closures, the district organized a way to deliver breakfast and lunch by bus to all children ages 18 and younger, regardless of whether they are enrolled in CPSD. They recruited volunteers, including some from Pierce College, to bag meals that would eventually get passed out at 69 bus stops throughout the Pierce community.

The meal-delivery service is directly impacting members of the community, including Melanie Love, a mother of three. She described how the delivery times have helped give her kids a sense of structure while out of school. “We get through as much schoolwork as we possibly can… so we can spend most of the afternoon outside playing,” Love said. 

She also shared how the free meals support daily organization and portion control. “It has helped to have the breakfast; the lunch. Like okay, ‘You’re having this for breakfast… You can have that for snacks… Don’t just go eat all the stuff at once!’ Because that’s what my kids would do,” Love said.

Even before CPSD announced their plans to provide meals, local students were preparing to do the same on their own time. Christian Aguilar, the senior class president at Lakes High School, organized a system of food collection and delivery for local food-insecure families. 

By spreading the word through social media, Christian managed to collect and distribute 130 bags of non-perishable foods. He prioritized the collection of pre-packaged items with long shelf lives. Each bag included goods like mac and cheese, bread, peanut butter and jelly, cereal, ramen, soup, and a variety of snacks. Christian worked alongside CPSD counselors to identify which students would need the most support. “Our goal was to cover the middle schools that were not a priority, to fill the gap,” Christian said.

Tacoma Public Schools are also providing walk-up and drive-through services from 10 a.m. to noon at several middle schools to provide free breakfast and lunch meal distribution for any child under 18, regardless of whether they live or attend school in the district. In addition, all of the elementary schools in the Puyallup School District are providing a weekly meal ration at all of their 22 elementary schools on Mondays from 11 a.m. to noon.

Other school districts, such as the union of Seattle Public Schools, also planned ways 

to feed their local youth. In SPS, starting March 16, employees are distributing grab-and-go sack lunches to students at 26 select school locations Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Seattle-area food bank volunteers will also supply weekend food bags for all families in need at any of the 26 school locations listed. Students are being instructed to refrain from eating them at the school to ensure they practice social distancing and good hygiene. 

In the Pierce College community, Jonas Upman, the Economic Mobility Coordinator, assures students that the Nourish Mobile Food Bank will maintain its regularly scheduled stops at the Puyallup and Fort Steilacoom campuses. Food is provided based on household size, and no ID is required. The mobile food bank can be accessed on the Puyallup campus on Mondays from 1 to 3 p.m. outside the Arts & Allied Health Building. Alternatively, for those living closer to the Fort Steilacoom campus, the food bank is available Tuesdays from 1 to 3 p.m. in Parking Lot D. Students can find updates on other food resources on the college’s Get Help page.

With the growing fear surrounding the virus, food and supplies in hygiene pantries are running low. Specifically, the Fort Steilacoom Campus Student Food & Hygiene Pantry needs donations. Upman, who works alongside Student Life, has asked for donations of packaged foods with a long shelf-life; for example, he said items such as ramen, juice boxes, trail mix and packaged dried fruit will last. This pantry serves over 300 students every month, and “anything that can be spared would be appreciated,” Upman added. 

In this time of global panic, it’s vital humanity does it’s best to stay calm and respect others. Groups of Washingtonians are providing care and support for the state’s hungry youth in need every day, despite the risk of infection. Schools are offering to feed youth until the end of the school closure. From this information, it can be assumed meals will stop being provided at the district’s summer release date. Hopefully by then, COVID-19 will be less of a risk to the public health.

Homestay & New Student BBQ

Pierce College joins hand-in-hand with community’s mobile food bank

Malia Adaoag / Staff Photo
Each shopper receives a certain amount of food depending on the number of people in their household.

Nourish Pierce County feeds students in need

Students and community members gather in the D lot  as a giant  truck pulls up to Pierce College Fort Steilacoom on Tuesdays at 1 p.m. Some busily fill out paperwork, while others patiently wait to pick up their ration for the week.  For some, this may be one of the only ways to feed their family. Janette Jarvis, a mother of four and a social services health major at Pierce, said visiting the food truck once a week is one way to support her family; she said she also receives food stamps. 

“The more people you have to feed, the harder it is,” she said. “So [Nourish Pierce County food truck] just helps with a few extra things. Snacks go farther for kids and stuff. But it’s not such a huge struggle; every little bit helps.”

There are often choices and sacrifices that most people have to make on a day-to-day basis just to put food on the table. Much has to be given up, but Jarvis does not see stretching her budget as a burden.

 “As a family of four kids and two adults, we don’t have the extra money to spend on a lot of food. So we have to make that $100 stretch as far as possible, plus whatever we get in food stamps.” Jarvis said. 

Malia Adaoag / Staff Photo
A Nourish Pierce County Food Bank volunteer, walks alongside a shopper in guiding them throughout the truck to make sure enough food is given.

The weekly mobile food bank, which Nourish Pierce County runs, began partnering with Pierce College Puyallup and Pierce College Fort Steilacoom for the first time in February, providing students, staff and community members a chance to receive free groceries or help those in need.  

Mobile food bank manager Durk Gunderson, who drives one of the two mobile food trucks to seven different locations in a week, said he sees the same black truck parked next to the mobile food bank every week. “I know that if we aren’t here, that person might not get food, and they’re not the only one,” said Gunderson, who has helped at Nourish Pierce County for seven years and been involved with community service work for 29 years. 

Gunderson added that he feels blessed with this opportunity to serve others, and he said he also wishes others would be more vigilant and show compassion. “Every day I see people, and they have their blinders on and don’t realize there are people out there that desperately need help.”

Vasiliy Sinelnyy is the economic mobility coordinator at Pierce College. On opening day in late February, the Fort Steilacoom campus had an estimated 150 people come to pick up food, while the Puyallup campus had 50 people, Sinelnyy said. 

Depending on household size, people are eligible to receive predetermined amounts of food based on the nutrition plan developed at Washington State University, Sinelnyy said. “Food is stored in the truck at proper temperatures in serving sizes so that when someone goes through it is a quick and easy process,” he added.     

 The mobile food truck depends on volunteers to ensure the process is just that quick and easy. Kelly Gardner, administrative assistant to the dean of Library and Learning Resources at Pierce College said she has helped out at every food bank at both the Fort Steilacoom and Puyallup campuses since February.

The inspiration for Gardner to give back to her community came from helping out at church food banks as a child. It was something her mother said that really resonated with her.

“She always used to say dinner always tasted better the night after helping at the food bank,” Gardner said. “Because then those other people were eating, too.”

Gardner said she finds joy in being a small part of something that helps people get food for their families that they wouldn’t be able to otherwise. 

When you know that there are people struggling with something as small as food, it makes you think about all the things you can do to help.”

— Perla Jimenez

She added that there are regulars who come through every week, some doing better than others financially and even emotionally.

“We see a lot of people come through who are definitely down on their luck,” Gardner said. “But the best thing we can do is just be friendly and give them light and hope when they’re struggling.”

Sinelnyy, said he has been working in the position for about nine months now while pursuing a master’s degree in public policy. 

He shared that the mobile food bank is interested in recruiting new volunteers.

“We have 10 to 15 people who sign up to help out at each food bank and rotate so that five to six are helping on any given day,” Sinelnyy said. “We are always looking for more volunteers and taking anyone that wants to help out.”

Perla Jimenez, who is completing her Direct Transfer Agreement in biology at the Puyallup campus, said she has always been charitable dating back to her childhood when she would help at dog rescues. She was led to volunteer at the mobile food bank for similar reasons. 

“When you know that there are people struggling with something as small as food, it makes you think about all the things you can do to help,” Jimenez said.

 Jimenez accommodates people who come for food and helps them package what they want. She said all of her experiences interacting with those who stop by the truck have been positive.

“I would come back and help in a heartbeat even after I graduate from Pierce,” Jimenez said. 

Pierce College is not the only place where the Nourish Pierce County Food Truck delivers food. To see the full schedule and list of locations, visit https://nourishpc.org/need-food.

Looking to volunteer at the mobile food bank? 

Email Vasiliy Sinelnyy on how you can help serve others at: [email protected].

Mondays: Puyallup campus on from 1-3 p.m.

Tuesdays: Fort Steilacoom on from 1-3 p.m.

Swinging into a new era

New friendships and leaders have Pierce College Softball headed in the right direction

The Pierce College softball team comes into the new season with a number of new players. Leading them is a familiar face from the past: Coach Mike Nelson. His experience has helped form one of the most successful teams in program history.

Duncan Stevenson / Courtesy Photo
Coach Mike Nelson

Led by Mike Nelson, the Raiders have goals of reaching the Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) tournament this year and playing for a chance at a ring following a 9-27 finish last year.

Nelson brings an approach that emphasizes the most basic parts of the game which has a trickle-down effect on other things too.

“Proficiency in the basic fundamentals leads to the game becoming easier to play,” Nelson said. “Teaching not only the how, but the why. In the long run, a better understanding of what we are doing leads to more confidence.” Confidence as a team leads to positive experiences both on and off the field and having fun as a team will also be important, Nelson said.

Duncan Stevenson / Courtesy Photo
Brittany Camp

Nelson returns to Pierce College, where he was an assistant from 2010-2012. He helped guide those teams to a 67-46 record over that span. That includes 2011, where the team tied a school record with 37 wins. Sophomore catcher Brittany Camp said the team has come together as a unit and the bond between the women is a key theme this year. Camp plans to get her general Associates in Arts degree and evaluate her options to play at the next level when the season ends.

“We honestly revolve around food,” Camp said. “We always go out to dinner and hang out with each other. We’re all really close this year and hang out even on our off days.”

Duncan Stevenson / Courtesy Photo
Michaela Hougland

Among the returners, outfielder Michaela Hougland has an opportunity to repeat as a member of the NWAC’s North All Region first team. She terrorized opposing pitchers in her freshman season with a .412 batting average and a .521 on base percentage.

Natalie Vollandt returns for her sophomore season after leading the team in innings pitched last year with 86.

Freshman utility player Riley Rivera comes to Pierce College all the way from Rathdrum, Idaho. She said the transition has not been a whole lot different but there’s more work and responsibility now.

Duncan Stevenson / Courtesy Photo
Riley Rivera

“It’s a big reality check having to move states and live on my own,” Rivera said. “You learn to take responsibility for more things.”

Rivera also said the experience has been positive so far and spoke on the transition from high school to college softball.

“There is definitely more talent so you are working with girls at a similar skill level,” Rivera said. “In high school you are working with younger girls and in college most people only have a year age gap.”

So far this season, the team holds a 3-7 record and will look to come into league action playing their best. Their next matchup is a road double header against Highline College on April 9.

International New Year’s Food


What to expect in other parts of the world

New Year’s Eve is the best time to plan for the new year ahead by creating a new resolution or doing something special with family. While Americans celebrate New Year’s with fireworks or parties until midnight, many people in other countries celebrate by gathering with family and eating food. Some of them believe these foods can bring luck to their lives in the coming year. 

Here is a list of traditional foods people serve for New Year’s Eve in Asia and Europe.


Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Glutinous Rice Cake (China and Taiwan)

While in China people call it ‘nian gao’ (nien-kao) meaning ‘higher year’, in Taiwan they call it hong gui gao (hung- kuei-kao). It is usually served during the Spring Festival which happens the same time as Chinese New Year. The shape is round and the texture is sticky because it is made from sticky rice with sugar, starch and water. The history of nian gao comes from the Liao Dynasty, when it was served as a snack, and it remains a common snack today. Nian gao can be served cold or warm.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Banh Chung and Banh Day (Vietnam)

Banh chung (ban-chung) and banh day (ban-day)  are traditional cakes from Vietnam that are always served during the Tet Holiday (Vietnamese New Year). They are both made from the same ingredients but come in different forms. Banh chung is a square cake that symbolizes Earth and bahn day is a round cake that symbolizes sky, according to ancient Vietnamese culture. The main ingredient is glutinous rice with pork and green beans inside. The rice is wrapped in bamboo leaves before boiling the cakes for 12 hours. Making banh chung and banh day is a way to remember one’s ancestors. Even though making it is time consuming and requires many people, it can be a good chance for families to gather.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Kamaboko (Japan)

Kamaboko is a kind of fish cake that originated in Japan and is served at the beginning and end of the year. Surimi, which is white fish, is the main ingredient in kamaboko. It’s easy to make kamaboko since all that is required is mashing white fish with additional seasoning. After that, the fish is formed into different shapes of kamaboko, which can be cooked by boiling or frying. People usually color kamaboko red and white, which are lucky colors in Japan. Kamaboko can also be formed into a rolling style that is usually added to ramen.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Tteokguk (Korea)

Tteokguk (deeok-guk) is a traditional food from Korea that was served during the war between Korea and China. It was used as a ceremonial food. The main ingredient is rice that is mixed with water to create small rice cakes. Some people add flowers to add color to the cakes. The broth is made from beef, chicken or pork. In ancient Korea, rice cakes were uncommon because they were regarded as an expensive food, so they were only served during holidays or Seollal (Korean New Year). Nowadays, this food still remains on the table during Seollal.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Ayam Taliwang (Indonesia)

Ayam taliwang (a-yam tal-ee-wong), which means spicy chicken, originates from the eastern region of Indonesia. Ayam taliwang has a long history that started from the war between Indonesian kingdoms in Taliwang. This war also involved chefs and Muslim priests, who would cook and pray for the kingdoms. The chefs’ task was to serve food that was sourced from nature and they chose to call it ‘chicken that comes from Taliwang’. The way people cook ayam taliwang is really unique. First they wash and cut the chicken. Then they grill it half-way before dipping it into cooking oil, spicy sauce with garlic and shrimp paste. In the end, the chicken is grilled or fried to serve. Indo Cafe is a recommended place to find this cuisine because they always serve fresh chicken with different kinds of spices. This restaurant is located at 13754 Aurora Ave. N. Haller Lake in Seattle.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Pork and Sauerkraut (Germany)

Germans believe that eating sauerkraut will bring as much prosperity as the number of pieces of cabbage on the plate. Each shred represents money, so the more people eat sauerkraut at midnight on New Year’s Eve, the better their lives will be. They usually eat it with pork sausage or pig feet because pork symbolizes luck or fortune. If anyone wants to eat pork and sauerkraut, they can visit Bruno’s European restaurant, which is located at 10902 Bridgeport Way SW. in Lakewood. They have a dish called Farshinki with Oma’s Sauerkraut Salad that has potato dumplings inside.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Rice Pudding (Norway)

Almost every country has its own rice pudding. In Norway, rice pudding is served with butter, sugar and cinnamon. Norwegians believe if someone finds an almond hidden in the rice pudding during New Year’s, that person will have more prosperity and a sweet life in the year ahead.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Poppy Seeds (Eastern Europe)

Poppy seeds symbolize prosperity and wealth. That is why they are not only served at Christmas time, but also during New Year’s, as Eastern European believe that each seed brings luck. Poppy seeds are made into poppy seed rolls and are a well-known food in Russia, Poland, Hungary and Lithuania. Poppy seeds can also be used in muffins. Bella Latte Cafe, located at 6450 Tacoma Mall Blvd, serves homemade poppy seed muffins.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Raclette (Switzerland and France)

During the winter season, the French celebrate with raclette (rah-kleht) cheese. There is no specific history for how raclette came to France, but it was well-known by shepherds in the Swiss Alps. While they were herding their flocks in the mountains, they melted the cheese and put it on bread for dinner. Raclette cheese is easy to find and is sold at both Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods.

Carl Vincent Carallas / Staff Illustration

Oliebollen (Netherlands)

Oliebollen (oly-bolen) are served during the winter season since they are always good to warm the stomach. Oliebollen, which is made of flour and sugar as the main ingredients, has a history behind it. The donuts began with an evil goddess named Perchta. During Christmas time, she was looking for something to fill her stomach and would slice people’s stomachs to get food. From that history, the Dutch believe that eating Oliebollen can help to maintain their body temperature during the winter using fat. That’s why this donut is served as a Dutch New Year’s tradition.

Foraging, an educational skill set that could one day be taught in public schools

Children who learn to identify edible weeds and other local wild foods can help to combat food scarcity and malnutrition for their families.


Our society’s current struggles with obesity, malnutrition and food scarcity may have found a solution in an unlikely group of individuals…school children.

            Alan Muskat is the founder of the Afikomen Project, the first wild foods public education program in the country. As a wild foods educator, Muskat has set a goal to teach all school children in the U.S. to be able to safely identify and harvest the 10 most common wild foods in their area, by 2030.

            Afikomen’s pilot program is based in Asheville, North Carolina.

            Asheville has one of the highest childhood hunger rates in the country, according to the Food Research and Action Center.  The local food bank delivers over ten million pounds of food a year to locals, and even with that assistance, more than one in five people in the Asheville area struggle to afford food, and the problem is even worse in the outer city limits where unemployment is higher.

            In a striking contrast, Asheville is also home to one of the richest temperate ecosystems in the country with over 100 wild edibles growing freely at various times throughout the year, according to Muskat, who has been in the business of harvesting wild foods for over 20 years.

            “We are training kids in public schools to forage as a basic skill,” said Muskat. “The children are able to take the wild foods they harvested home to their families and any excess harvest is sold to local markets and restaurants, where there is a high demand for such ingredients. The profits from those sales fund the Afikomen Project and its educational classes.

            By teaching children to forage for food and profit, we are promoting national food security by empowering local families to feed and fend for themselves and establishing sustainable local economies at the same time.”

            Ironically, what seems like a potential solution to ease hunger among poverty stricken areas has become popular among the affluent. Time magazine reported in a 2010 article “the ingredients that many chefs seek are not the ones that can be ordered…they are traveling from the forest floor to the thin porcelain plates of Michelin-star restaurants throughout U.S. cities.”

            One such restaurant, Noma, is located in Copenhagen, is considered by many to be the pioneer of this wild foods trend. Noma has been voted the best restaurant in the world four times in recent years and much of its menu is freshly foraged local foods. Noma’s chef, René Redzepi, has also planned an educational program in Denmark that will teach children “to explore their local landscape and taste the abundance of flavors around them.” He hopes that one day schools will teach children about natural food the same way they do about reading, writing and math.

            While both Muskat and Redzepi have a passion for wild foods, they both also view school children as the beneficiary of this important knowledge.

            Malnutrition is a key issue that the Afikomen program aims to combat. “Fresher foods are shockingly more nutritious,” says Muskat.

            Take weeds for example. By definition a weed is something that grows where we don’t want it and while we may not want them, “these plants are some of the healthiest foods in the world. They are so nutritious that many are medicinal,” (according to the website notastelikehome.org, a company also founded by Muskat that offers foraging tours and classes). Nettle, for example, has over 125 documented health benefits (Duke phytochemical database, 2011).

            But can teaching children to forage for nutritious and free foods help people who live in inner city areas identified as “food deserts?” (A “food desert” is typically a low-income area with limited or no access to affordable and whole fresh foods).

            Professor Philip Stark of UC Berkeley is attempting to answer this question and has put together a team to investigate urban foraging as a potential solution to malnutrition.

            Stark has started the Berkeley Open Source Food Project, a website identifying edible wild plants and maps where they can be found in three east bay “food deserts” and is testing samples for nutritional content and toxic contamination.

            “We have already found vast quantities of delicious fresh wild greens in economically challenged parts of Oakland, Richmond, and Berkeley,” according to Stark’s website at: www.inaturalist.org/projects/berkeley-open-source-food.  “Overgrown yards and empty lots are places where we are finding the most edible weeds. The food is there, it’s just not recognized as food,” said Stark.

            In a 2015 interview published on grist.org, Stark tells the story of spotting a triangle of dirt between someone’s driveway and the road. He identified over 10 edible plants there, “more than what you would get in a mixed mesclun bag at a farmer’s market...and it’s free.” Not long after, Stark runs into another team looking for precisely the same plants. They were city workers in hazardous-materials suits spraying herbicide to kill these same greens. He remarked, “Here were two problems - people in need of free health food and weeds in need of removal - might they be combined to form a single solution?”

            Stark recalls teaching his 3-year old daughter to find edible plants as a game. “I sent her off to search for oxalis and a few minutes later she came back with a piece in her hand. Normally, she didn’t like to eat greens that we served at dinnertime, but there was something about finding it herself that made it alright to munch on the freshly picked weed.”

            While Stark admits that having the free time to stroll and pick edible weeds is a luxury not afforded to most low-income families (and especially single parents) who are working a couple of jobs and hustling to get their kids fed and to bed. He suggests “I might, however, have the time to forage if I were the child of that single parent and knew how to do it.”

            One person who experienced this lifestyle firsthand is Euell Gibbons, a famous naturalist and outdoorsman. In the same interview on grist.org, Gibbons tells his story as a child in rural New Mexico in 1922. His father left in search of work. He and his three siblings along with their mother were alone, without money and starving. At age 11, Gibbons went out looking for food. He foraged for prickly pears, mushrooms and berries and fed his family every day for a month until his father returned. He never stopped foraging; it stuck with him for life. Forty-years later, Gibbons wrote a book titled Stalking the Wild Asparagus, which was a best seller.

            “By foraging, children gain sunshine, exercise, wholesome food and a sense of home while contributing to their family and sometimes even to their local economy,” said Muskat. This project is based on the well-known proverb, “give people fish and they eat for a day; teach them to fish, and they will eat for a lifetime.”

Pierce students performs ethnic dance

Indonesian dance group

Indonesian culture comes to Seattle through art, dance, public forums, music, and food

Abdul Wahab
Contributing Writer

Having arts and performance classes in our college inspires students’ creativity and art. Drawing, drama, public speaking, and music classes represent the student’s interests, along with dance.

Seattle Center held an Indonesian culture day where performers presented their culture through dance, costumes, exhibitions and discussions.

Pierce student Jez Dionne Lumbantoruan preformed and earned the appreciation from the audience.

As a media student from Indonesia, on scholarship, she represented Pierce College on top of being evaluated for her art form.

The celebrating is held as part of a 50th anniversary of the Seattle World’s fair, where huge number of Indonesian people celebrated the event.

The cultural event was enjoyed and observed by multiple cultures

A live performance by the band, ASAP Dragon Fly, demonstrated their versatile talent.

There was also a Angklung performance, which is musical instrument made from two bamboo tubes connected to a bamboo frame.

Basically Indonesia is a diverse nation consists of 17,000 islands that bring different cultures and ethnic groups.

The Indonesian culture day showed attendees of the verse differences in culture, while reminding participants of their Indonesian culture, in addition showcasing their heritage through theatrical shows and traditional music.

After a full day of dances by singles, couples, and groups, the performances kept audience’s eyes upon entertained and delighted.

A memorable moment was the presentations of the wedding dresses, where escorted women wearing wedding dresses attracting the attention of the audience.

The estimated cost of the exquisite dresses starting at $500 dollars, all depending on the demand of the couple, customized requirements, and the materials used in the dress construction.

The event featured Indonesian food, a huge line observed during the food serving the patroness.

Fried food is not the only option any more

Students are offered a wider variety of foods in the campus cafeteria

Andrea Bell
Staff Writer

     Rushing around between classes there is no time to run to the store to pick up a lunch, meaning it’s home packed or cafeteria.

     The cafeteria food is reasonably priced but not always the healthiest option. The majority of the food coming from “The College Grill” and the food making up that menu the typical fries, grilled cheese and hamburgers.

     Great as a quick fix for any hungry student, but are students sacrificing the convenience for nutrition?

     The cafeteria offers many healthy options such as salads, and sandwiches, as well as daily soups. However these tend cost more than the value deals on the menu at “The College Grill”. Although mildly more nutritious it hurts a college students wallet a little more.

     The cafeteria also offers noodle dishes; these too are slightly more expensive. However, with a wider variety of veggies and meats added to the noodles this provides one with a wider variety of nutrients.

     Besides the main dishes the cafeteria also offers fruit and vegetable cups as well as humus, which is a vegetarian spread that offers a great source of protein.

     These too are on the pricey side meaning they range from two to three dollars and they are just side dishes, they wouldn’t be filling.

     The food choices being limited will almost always come down to something from the grill, because they are way cheaper, and who doesn’t love a big order of salty fries after of between classes. However, with out even adding a drink the food can already bump one up close to their daily caloric intake level.

     Drinks are a completely different ball field. The cafeteria offers many different types of drinks, from soda to water and everything in-between. Soda isn’t the best thing to wash the fries down with however, because it just adds to the fatty sugary intake.

     The cafeteria is the easiest place to buy food for a busy college student, but as with any fast foods they should be enjoyed in moderation as like anything else. So don’t be afraid to change it up every once in a while and try the fruit or salads, even sandwiches.

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