Three Reasons to Visit the Tacoma Art Museum This Year


Before moving to Tacoma in 2010, Mark and I came up from Los Angeles for a couple of exploratory visits.  There were a lot of things about Tacoma that appealed to us, but it was ultimately the Tacoma Art Museum (TAM) that played the pivotal role in our decision to make the move. We were blown away by the beauty of the building and by the quality of the exhibits.  It was a real “aha” moment for us.  If a city the size of Tacoma could support a museum of this caliber, we knew it was a place we could be proud to call home. 




We became actively involved at the museum soon after moving to Tacoma, attending exhibits and getting to know the staff and other museum supporters.  I was asked to join the museum’s board of directors in 2012, and I’m currently serving as the Vice President of the board (in line for the presidency in 2021).  We’ve got three upcoming exhibits at the museum that I wanted to share with you – each one different from the next and all worth a look.

Bart at TAM: Animating America’s Favorite Family

Beginning this month, TAM will be showcasing a private collection of animation cells from America’s longest-running prime time television series – The Simpsons.  The exhibit offers an in-depth look at the collaborative process behind this much loved classic.  We’re excited to bring this show to the Pacific Northwest and expect it to be a blockbuster, appealing to visitors of all ages.  Opens July 20, 2019.




Monet, Renoir, Degas and Their Circle: French Impressionism and the Northwest

This fall, TAM will launch a special exhibit of French Impressionism, curated by Executive Director David Setford.  The French Impressionists were thought to be radicals in their time, but they had a significant impact on artists in the Pacific Northwest and their work was eventually incorporated into the best public and private art collections in the region. This exhibit will include signature works by Monet, Renoir, Camille Pissarro, Alfred Sisely, Gustave Caillebotte, Gauguin, Berte Morisot, Mary Cassatt and Degas, as well as works by some of the American artists that were influenced by the French Impressionists – Theodore Robinson, Theodore Wendel, CC McKim, and Clara Jane Stevens.  Opens September 28, 2019.



Forgotten Stories: Northwest Public Art of the 1930s

I’m particularly excited about TAM’s upcoming exhibit of public art from the 1930s.  Many people have forgotten that the U.S. government supported the visual arts all across the country during the Great Depression, employing hundreds of artists and commissioning thousands of works of art.  This exhibit will offer an extensive overview of the work that was created in the Pacific Northwest during this period.  The exhibit is being developed by TAM’s Curator of Collections and Specific Exhibitions, Margaret Bullock, who has been working with a group of colleagues to produce a major publication to accompany the exhibit, supported by the Henry Luce Foundation. I think Margaret is brilliant so you won’t want to miss this show.  Opens February 22, 2020.




The Tacoma Art Museum is a world class institution.  Its mission is to connect people through art.  The museum is a big part of what makes Tacoma so special to me, and I’m proud to support it.  I hope you’ll take the opportunity to visit soon.

Jeff Williams is a top-producing Realtor with Windermere Professional Partners, specializing in residential real estate in Tacoma, Gig Harbor, University Place and Lakewood.
Jeff Williams: (253) 303-1135


Posted on July 14, 2019 at 9:08 pm
South Sound Property Group | Posted in Community, Lifestyle |

Top 5 Reasons to Live In Proctor

The Proctor District is one of  North Tacoma’s most popular neighborhoods.  Historic homes, great public schools, tree lined streets, views of the water and a charming central business district are just a few of the things that make this neighborhood so special.  For those who aren’t familiar with Proctor (and for those who are already fans), I thought I’d share some of my favorite things about the place we call home.


Metropolitan Market – Met Market is the undeniable anchor of the Proctor District.  This upscale grocery store caters to a sophisticated palate, with many locally sourced products, an outstanding cheese department and a wine steward.  Met Market could feel some heat if Whole Foods delivers on their promise to open a store in University Place, but the neighborhood feel at the Met will always be hard to beat.




Chalet Bowl – This family owned and operated 12-lane bowling alley “strikes” a wonderful balance between old school Americana and new school hip.  The lanes are well maintained, the staff is extremely friendly and the weekly bargain specials are hard to resist.  Two words.  Glow Bowling.






Wheelock Public Library – This local library has been serving the community since 1927 and is much used and much loved by children and adults alike.  An iconic bronze statue of Tacoma pioneer and early businessman Allen Mason located adjacent to the library is often whimsically decorated to befit the season.




Puget Park – Located at the corner of Proctor and N. 31st Street, Puget Park was one of the first green spaces to be donated to the city of Tacoma for public use in 1888.  The park features an updated play area and a picnic-perfect grassy knoll.  If you’re feeling adventurous, you can follow a trail down through Puget Gulch to the waterfront for a wilderness experience right in the heart of the city.




Blue Mouse Theater – Originally opened in 1923 and now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Blue Mouse is Washington State’s oldest continuously operating movie theater.  A group of local activists and preservationists purchased and restored the theater in 1993.  Dale Chihuly reportedly designed the blue neon mice that grace the marquis.




Mark Pinto is a top-producing Realtor with Windermere in Tacoma specializing in the purchase and sale of historic and luxury homes.  Click here to e-mail Mark or feel free to give him a call at (253) 318-0923.




Posted on February 17, 2014 at 12:04 pm
South Sound Property Group | Posted in Lifestyle, North Tacoma, Tacoma Real Estate | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

What is it about Proctor?

We're constantly asked… why is Proctor so hot?  Our listings in the Proctor area of Tacoma sell faster than anywhere else in the city.  We live in Proctor in a 1885 Victorian that is on the Tacoma Register of Historic Places.  We know a thing or two about the area.  We love Proctor, but you decide for yourself.

The Proctor District is one of Tacoma's most celebrated and desirable neighborhoods, offering residents an urban village experience that harkens back to a simpler time.  The area features a wonderful mix of owner operated shops and restaurants, including the upscale Metropolitan Market, Chalet Bowl and the historic Blue Mouse Theater – the oldest continuously operating movie theater in Washington State.  The University of Puget Sound, which moved its campus to its current North End location back in 1924, provides its neighbors with access to a variety of academic and cultural activities.  The Proctor District hosts a lively local farmer's market, the second largest in the city, every Saturday from April through November.  The neighborhood offers excellent public schools and easy access to Point Defiance Park, the waterfront and downtown Tacoma.  

For more information visit

Posted on March 29, 2013 at 10:23 pm
South Sound Property Group | Posted in Lifestyle, North Tacoma, Tacoma Real Estate |

New Plans for Prairie Line Trail in Downtown Tacoma


New Plans for the Prairie Line Trail, UWT Station

At this week’s City Council study session we got a look at the new design plans for the Prairie Line Trail – UWT Station.

About a year ago, we saw the first set of proposed designs for the project, which UWT was calling the “Hood Corridor.” Those designs (and the name) met with some challenges over bikeability and historic character. The University changed the project name to the “Prairie Line Trail, UWT Station,” and took some time to reconsider the designs. Ultimately they came back with the plans presented this week.

The new design makes changes to improve bicycle access and to better honoring the area’s industrial past and the historical significance of the railroad terminus. The bike corridor looks more like a true corridor, running straight through the space, rather than taking jogs around other design elements.

The rails remaining from the train line that gives the trail its name take a prominent place in the design, with plans showing surrounding landscaping and paving brought to their level, but not covering the metal. Rails run through simple concrete pavers, through grass, and through rain gardens.

Images from the presentation available on the UWT “project page”: show rails with railroad ties running through a series of rain gardens at various levels of fullness.

21st Street Crossing

Another challenge related to this project is figuring out how the Prairie Line Trail will cross 21st Street in a way that is safe for bikes, pedestrians, and drivers, while minimizing the disruption to both the bike corridor and the major arterial street. We saw several suggested solutions presented back in May of last year, and this week we see a plan for preferred alternatives in three phases. Phase one looks like it would basically maintain the flashing light crossing we’ve got now, which is far from ideal.

Phase two would implement a “double median,” shrinking vehicle traffic to three lanes, and allowing bicycles and pedestrians to cross at the mid-block Prairie Line Crossing with a couple of protective medians. It looks a little like a game of frogger.

Phase three is a ways off, and would require some significant construction, but the ultimate goal is a tunnel for bikes and pedestrians to cross under 21st Street. The tunnel option was ruled out last we heard, but it looks like it’s back in.

UPDATED: A source with knowledge of the project that wishes to remain anonymous has told us that “the City is leaning toward long-term road diet as the likely long-term solution. The “pie in the sky” of the future would be the grade separation. Tunnel has zero very little support.”


Posted on January 31, 2013 at 11:44 am
South Sound Property Group | Posted in Lifestyle, Tacoma Real Estate |