107th birthday deserves a ‘big party’

May 17th, 2017 | By
107th birthday deserves a ‘big party’

Jonie Emrick is among the folks looking forward to the celebration of Ruth Hofto’s 107th birthday.
Hofto is a regular at the University Place Senior Center, where Emrick is the director. And Emrick promises that on May 12, Hofto’s birthday, the center will go all out to be sure it is a day to remember.
By all accounts, Hofto is an amazing woman. An artist, she held an art show at the Lakewood public library when she was 97, and she drove until age 98.
Ten years ago, Hofto’s daughter, Jacki Hofto, retired from her job at the University of Texas as a music teacher and moved back to the family home in University Place to help her mother.

Your car can be Puget Sound’s friend if you stop drips in their tracks

Apr 19th, 2017 | By
Your car can be Puget Sound’s friend if you stop drips in their tracks

Like they say at, “every drip counts” when it comes to reducing the pollution in stormwater in the City of Tacoma and elsewhere.
Most experts agree that oils and fluids leaking from the vehicles onto roadways, parking lots and yards is one of the main contaminants in stormwater runoff that is now the main source of pollution in Commencement Bay and Puget Sound.
“Vehicles drip an estimated 7 million quarts of motor oil into the Puget Sound watershed each year,” said Jeanette Ordonez, community outreach and education coordinator for Futurewise (, a regional environmental advocacy organization.

An immigrant’s success story

Mar 28th, 2017 | By
An immigrant’s success story

Sixty-six years ago, Victor Pesantes boarded an airplane and flew from Ecuador to New York City.
He was 14 years old.
Even today at 80 years old, just talking about that day leaving his mother and younger sister behind brings tears to the Puyallup resident’s eyes.
When Pesantes was 6, his dad was murdered and his mother was struggling to raise Pesantes and his younger sister by taking in sewing. After an accident with the sewing machine when the needle went right through his mother’s finger, she and Pesantes walked 20 miles to the hospital to get help.

For dementa patients and their families and friends, ‘This group helps’

Mar 7th, 2017 | By
For dementa patients and their families and friends, ‘This group helps’

Memory Cafes are a safe, comfortable spot for people with memory loss and their caregivers to gather, share information and socialize with each other.
Linda McCone, program coordinator of Caregiver Support at Lutheran Community Services Northwest, said there is a lot of stress involved with caregiving.
“This group helps,” she said. “For one thing, it makes the people with dementia feel less like social outcasts because a lot of them self-isolate, and by the time they are later on in the disease, it’s difficult for them to form friendships.”