Economic Development Council to present Economic Courage Awards at first-ever Hootenanny


This year, as we emerge from a pandemic, is like no other. So the Thurston Economic Development Council (EDC) is having an event like never before.

Instead of its typical annual business awards gala, it’s holding its first-ever Hootenanny – an outdoor barbeque party. It’s set for next Thu., July 22 at 3-6 p.m.

The event will celebrate and promote local businesses and honor some with Economic Courage Awards.

Economic Courage Awards are planned for businesses that have shown resilience and creativity despite the challenges brought by the pandemic. The Thurston EDC explained that “Economic courage could be defined as a leader, a business, non-profit and or organization that, while facing economic uncertainty and a radical retraction of “business as usual,” took extraordinary steps to provide a service, a product, and or a support service.” Such businesses showed the ability to “adapt, change and thrive during a time of uncertainty.”

“Although award nominations are closed, the Thurston EDC continues to collect stories of economic courage and will continue to share them throughout the year, so feel free” to complete this survey, according to Holly House, Thurston EDC event manager.

With this, the Thurston EDC invites locals to an afternoon filled with “good food, music and beer.” And cider, too. They also encourage participants to wear casual workwear, boots, jeans and gingham. Instead of a formal event, this year’s venue will be decked in hay bales complete with music performances by the Oly Mountain Boys. The organizers will serve beer from Top Rung Brewing Co. and cider from Whitewood Cider.

To join, participants need to register and pay a $50 fee for each person. The Hootenanny will take place at the Thurston EDC Center for Business & Innovation, 4220 6th Ave. SE, Lacey WA 98503.

Since 1985, the Thurston EDC has hosted an annual awards gala as a way to honor local businesses, and recognize their role in promoting economic health in the region. Some of the traditional award categories include new business, small business, non-profit, and large business.


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