Lacey’s 50th Birthday


Despite the slight dusting of overnight snow, the crowd showed up for a lively presentation at the December 15th monthly history talk at the Schmidt House in Tumwater.  We in Thurston County’s oldest community helped celebrate the 50th birthday of our youngest community, Lacey. The presenters were lively, funny and a lot of fun and the response was wonderful.

Former Lacey mayor Jon Halvorson, Lacey Museum director Erin Quinn Valcho, Ken Balsley and Schmidt House curator Karen Johnson.

The illustrated presentation began with story-teller Ken Balsley introducing actor Chris Valcho as Bob Blume, known as the father of Lacey.  His informative and entertaining introductory segment led into a dual presentation by Lacey Museum Director, Erin Quinn Valcho and Ken Balsley telling the stories of how the community was formed in 1966 amid periodic episodes of back-and-forth competition with the City of Olympia.The growth pains of the 1960s and the influences of the freeway, South Sound Mall, and various business interests were also discussed.


A good sign of a successful talk is the response of the audience when the question and answer time comes.  There were many good questions and comments from the group that included a number of residents of Panorama City and former Lacey mayor Jon Halvorson.

Ken Balsley and Erin Quinn Valcho take questions from the large crowd at the Schmidt House.

The program was video recorded by TCTV for later airing on the Tumwater channel 26.  The Heritage Builders program of the Olympia Tumwater Foundation wants to thank the City of Tumwater and TCTV for their support of our archives and local history programs that have been so well-received by the community.

Our next free noon hour talk will be on Thursday, January 19th, with local historian Lanny Weaver talking about researching your own neighborhood’s history.

Picture of Artesian #81
Artesian #81

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