Sign up for Downtown In Motion!

Do you live in Downtown Tacoma? Interested in learning more about walking, biking, taking the bus, and ridesharing in your neighborhood? Sign up for Downtown In Motion and create a personalized packet with a free transportation tool and resources to help you explore your options.

1. Go to surveymonkey.com/r/DowntownInMotion to request your transportation packet and fill out a short survey.*

2. Select your FREE travel tool: a $20 ORCA card or rechargeable bike light.

3. Receive your transportation packet at your door!

Look for Downtown In Motion staff at community events throughout the summer, like the Broadway Farmers Market on the last Thursday of each month. We’ll be out and about to answer your questions about walking, biking, taking the bus, and sharing a ride.

*While supplies last. Limit one per person. Sign up by September 22, 2019.

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Scavenger Hunt

If you love healthy competition, the chance to win cool prizes, and exploring downtown Tacoma, the Walk Tacoma Scavenger Hunt is for you! Taking place on August 7, the free hunt will send you on a journey through downtown to decode clues, do activities, and visit locations on foot, by bus and Link, or on a bike.

The event, sponsored by Pierce Transit, Comcast, and Downtown Tacoma Partnership will start at Tollefson Plaza (S 17th & Pacific) and end with prizes, live music, a beer garden and food truck.  Participants can begin their hunt between 4:30 and 5:30 p.m. after checking in at Tollefson Plaza, and must return by 7:00 p.m.  On the hunt, participants complete as many activities and questions as possible during the time frame.

Build a group of colleagues from work, grab a pal or two, work individually, or bring the family to learn more about active transportation, explore great Tacoma locations, and get out into the community. All ages are welcome and the Children’s Museum of Tacoma will be providing activities for the kids. Scavenger hunters can work individually or create a team to win prizes ranging from large to small. No one walks away empty handed!

Don’t forget to bring your camera phone or digital camera, and save time by registering online or at the event.

The Walk Tacoma series, sponsored by the Puyallup Watershed Initiative Active Transportation Community of Interest, is a six-event walking series held on the first Wednesday of the month, from April through August.  This year celebrates Walk Tacoma’s 10-year anniversary by bringing back the favorite walks from the past 10 years.  All walks in the series include activities for children provided by the Children’s Museum of Tacoma.

For more information on the full Walk Tacoma Series visit www.downtownonthego.org or find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Barley & Berries Bash 2019

Experience an evening out on the water at the Foss Waterway Seaport and join Downtown On the Go for our annual Barley & Berries Bash fundraising event on Thursday, August 22, 2019! While you’re here, enjoy tastings from local wineries and breweries along with delicious food, a silent auction, dessert dash, live music from Kim Archer, and an opportunity to make a donation.

The VIP Party aboard the Hawaiian Chieftain is back by popular demand. And this year we’re adding the Lady Washington and we’re setting sail! (Thank you, Grays Harbor Historical Society!)

General Admission Bash Time: 5:30 to 8 p.m.
VIP Bash Time: 4 to 6 p.m.

Purchase your tickets here.

Still not sure? See photos from 2018!

Thank you Downtown Tacoma Partnership and South Sound Magazine!

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Walk Tacoma’s Nihonmachi (Japantown)

Take a guided tour of Tacoma’s historic Nihonmachi (Japantown) with writer Tamiko Nimura, and historian Michael Sullivan on the Walk Tacoma, Tacoma’s Japantown Walk. The free walk, sponsored by BCRA, will be held on Wednesday, July 10 from noon to 1pm. It will start at the top of the UWT stairs at S. 19 and Jefferson Ave.

Between the 1880’s and the 1940’s, immigrants created a vibrant Japantown in downtown Tacoma. The neighborhood extended from S.17 (Union Station) to S. 11, between Pacific Ave. and Market St.  It included hotel, shops, restaurants, places of worship, and a Japanese Language School.  Walk the historic neighborhood and learn about the significance of these historic downtown locations.  Leaders Tamiko Nimura and Michael Sullivan have done a large amount of research on this historic neighborhood, and together they have created a free phone app of the walking tour for iPhones http://apple.co/2zrNb8M and for Android http://bit.ly/2yLbpxq.

Register for the walks online or sign-in at the event.  The events are free, all ages are welcome, and American Sign Language interpretation will be available.

Earn a Walk Tacoma 10-year anniversary t-shirt by walking, biking or taking transit to the event.  Find your nearest bus route on the Pierce Transit website, take the Tacoma Link which runs every 12 minutes, bike, or walk to the event.  T-shirts will be given out at the walk.

The Walk Tacoma series, sponsored by the Puyallup Watershed Initiative Active Transportation Community of Interest, is a six-event walking series held on the first Wednesday of the month, from April through August.  This year celebrates Walk Tacoma’s 10-year anniversary by bringing back the favorite walks from the past 10 years.  All walks in the series include activities for children provided by the Children’s Museum of Tacoma.

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Meet the Staff: Meadbh

Name: Meadbh Koenigsberg
Occupation: Events Intern
Employer: Downtown: On the Go!
Gets around by: Biking, Public Transit

Where do you live and where do you work?
I live in the North End and work in Downtown Tacoma.

How do you get there?
Bus or bike, depending on the weather! The 1 picks me up on 6th and takes me right to work on Pacific Ave. If I bike, I head down 11th then hop over to 6th to get most of the way downtown.

How does it all add up? How much money or time do you save?
Last summer I would drive and park which cost me $4 for parking per day plus gas. Now, I don’t have to spend time looking for parking! With an Orca card from work, the bus is really affordable. Biking is free and I can park my bike in a bike cage at work.

What’s in it for you?
I like the time in the morning to read a book on the bus or listen to a podcast on my bike. Moving my muscles in the morning can be better than coffee in terms of waking me up and I can enjoy the good weather on my bike!

Do you have any tips for people who may be trying these modes for the first time?

Putting your trip into Google Maps is really helpful for me, especially the “Arrive By” function, which helps me when I’m planning a bus trip to Seattle or with multiple stops so I know what to expect and how long I’ll be waiting. Always be early for the bus and factor in the time it takes you to get to the bus stop. I’ve had to run down the street to catch a bus way too often!

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Two Walk Tacoma Events in June

June is Walk Tacoma Month, and Downtown On the Go will be celebrating it by holding two walk events on the first and third Wednesdays of the month.  The Architecture Walk will be on June 5, and the Museum Walk and social at the Foss Waterway Seaport will be on June 19.

Leading off the month, former Tacoma City Council member and architect David Boe will take everyone on an architecture tour of downtown.  The 1-mile walk will highlight historic buildings along A St., Pacific Ave, Commerce St., and Broadway, including the Elks Temple where the new McMenamin’s hotel is located.  Participants will also learn about the design of our downtown, and some of the changes it has seen through the years.

Due to the popularity of the event, Downtown On the Go will be offering two Architecture Walks:  11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. and 1 – 2 p.m.  Both walks, sponsored by Commencement Bank, will start at 1201 Pacific Plaza.  The 11:30 a.m. walk will include American Sign Language Interpretation.

The second walk of the month is the Museum Walk on June 19 at 5:15 – 6:30 p.m.  The 1.4-mile walk, sponsored by Spaceworks Tacoma, will start at the Children’s Museum of Tacoma and stop outside many of the downtown museums.  Representatives from each museum will talk about the exciting things happening at the museums including current exhibits and events.  The Foss Waterway Seaport, which will be the last stop on the walk, will open its doors just for the participants and host a social with snacks and music.

Register for the walks online or sign-in at the event.  The events are free, all ages are welcome, and American Sign Language interpretation will be available.

The Walk Tacoma series, sponsored by the Puyallup Watershed Initiative Active Transportation Community of Interest, is a six-event walking series held on the first Wednesday of the month, from April through August.  All walks in the series include activities for children provided by the Children’s Museum of Tacoma.

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Bike to Work Day is May 17, 2019!

Stretch your legs and dust off your helmet because May 17, 2019 is Bike to Work Day! Bike along Fawcett to Honey at Alma Mater, where we will be serving up hot coffee ~free~ for those who bike. Meet us there anytime from 7 – 10 a.m.

Enjoy snacks, games, and music at the commuter celebration. Whether you bike to work every day or just on Friday, May 17th – there is something for you!

We will be sharing our bike advocacy goals and all the ways you can get involved in local projects.

Contact Hally at hallyb@downtownonthego.org for more information!

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Meet the Staff: Amber

Name:  Amber Stanley
Occupation: Program Manager
Employer: Downtown: On the Go!
Gets around by: Walking, Sounder Train, Link Light Rail

Where do you live and where do you work?
I live in downtown Puyallup and work in downtown Tacoma.

How do you get there?
I drive less than two miles to the Puyallup Fair Red Lot, where I park for free. Then I walk to the Puyallup Sounder Station where I catch the train to the Tacoma Dome. From the Tacoma Dome, I ride the Link to the Commerce Street stop, which is a short walk away from my work. 

How does it all add up? How much money or time do you save?
If I were to drive, it would cost me about $16 per day to park in the garage closest to my work, totaling $320 per month. I would also spend money on gas. In total, I save close to $400 per month by leaving my car behind.

What’s in it for you?
Even though walking and using public transportation adds 15 minutes to my overall commute time, it is worth it! Leaving my car behind means my morning commute isn’t filled with the stress that comes from sitting in traffic and finding parking. It allows me to start the day with a short walk, relax on the train, saves me money, and benefits the environment.

Do you have any tips for people who may be trying these modes for the first time?
Don’t be afraid to give public transit, walking or biking a try! It may seem intimidating at first, but with a little pre-trip planning, it is much more relaxing than driving.

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Tap Into Tacoma’s Brewery District

Learn about Tacoma’s historic Brewery District, visit one of the local breweries, and find out why Tacoma has been a draw for brewers on Downtown On the Go’s Walk Tacoma Brewery Walk, Wednesday, May 1 from 5:15 – 6:30 p.m.  The event, sponsored by KPG, will start at S. 19th & Jefferson at the top of the UWT stairs and end with a social at 7 Seas Brewing.

The 1.2 mile walk, led by Andrew Reeves and Jesse Dunagan, will highlight the past, present, and future of Tacoma’s breweries and district.  Participants will learn about the brewing culture in Tacoma as well as the history of the Brewery and Warehouse Districts.

Tacoma has a rich brewery history and in recent years has seen a resurgence, with ten breweries now located in downtown Tacoma.  Exciting, new developments are being built in Tacoma’s Brewery District including: Brewery Blocks between C St. and Commerce on S. 21st, and Tacoma’s Town Center between S. 21st and S. 23rd and Jefferson.

Register for the walk online or sign-in at the event.  The event is free, all ages are welcome, and American Sign Language interpretation will be available.

The Walk Tacoma series, sponsored by the Puyallup Watershed Initiative Active Transportation Community of Interest, is a six-event walking series held on the first Wednesday of the month, from April through August.  All walks in the series include activities for children provided by the Children’s Museum of Tacoma.

For more information on the full Walk Tacoma series visit www.downtownonthego.org or find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Meet the Staff: Laura

Name: Laura Svancarek
Occupation: CTR Coordinator
Employer: Downtown On the Go
Gets around by: Bus or Walk

Where do you live and where do you work?
I live on Sheridan near 15th, and work downtown on S. 11th and Pacific.

How do you get there?
I take the 57 bus down the hill to Commerce, and the 28 bus back up the hill to Cushman. It is a 5-minute walk to get to and from the bus stops to my apartment.

How does it all add up? How much money and time do you save?
My ORCA Card is provided through my work, so taking the bus is a good way to cut down costs. Not only do I not pay for gas, but I don’t have to pay for parking. It saves me a couple of dollars every time I work downtown, which quickly adds up! The bus routes I take are very efficient, so it takes about 10 minutes longer to take the bus as it would to drive downtown and find a parking spot.

What’s in it for you?
I’ve always loved taking the bus. It forces me to wake up on time and get out the door when I need to, and walking 5 minutes to the stop helps to get my brain working in the mornings.

Most importantly, I absolutely hate trying to park downtown. Finding a spot near where I’m going, parallel parking while people watch, cars waiting for me to get out of their way… it’s so stressful! By taking the bus, I get a few extra minutes to relax with my phone instead of worrying about parking.

Do you have any tips for people who might be trying this mode for the first time?
Look at your options. If the times don’t work, or if you don’t want to walk across a busy street (I’ll take an earlier ride over crossing 19thanytime!), there might be other route options nearby. Have your fare ready to go in your pocket. When I’m taking a new route for the first time, I’ll usually have maps open on my phone so I can track how close I am to my stop.

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