Food Review: Ultimate Bagel is just that

There is no doubt that life as a college student is busy, and sometimes it is hard to find time for the most important meal of the day: breakfast. At The Ultimate Bagel on 1217 N. Hamilton Street, a wide variety of options are available which are quick and easy so that breakfast doesn’t have to be skipped.

Twenty years ago, The Ultimate Bagel opened its doors in North Spokane and is now located next to Gonzaga’s campus. After several owners, Christi Chapman and her husband currently own the business and have kept the standards the same: homemade bagels and cream cheese made from good, quality products.

“We have a product that is different,” Chapman said. “We have a lot of control of the product and everything that goes into it, so we make sure that we use good quality ingredients.”

The menu consists of bagels and cream cheese that are made from scratch by Chapman’s husband who makes all the bagels inhouse. Customers can come in and order a bagel with cream cheese for around $4. They also serve breakfast and lunch sandwiches and soup.

“Every day I have a hard time deciding which bagel I want,” Chapman said. “The Snickerdoodle paired with pumpkin cream cheese is great. It’s a combination of sticky and sweet.”

Some  other options include traditional flavors such as blueberry and onion, as well as less common flavors such as sun-dried tomato and jalapeno asiago cheese.

Like the bagels, the cream cheese flavors come in the regular options such as plain and strawberry, and also in different flavors such as pumpkin and honey almond.

“I like the asiago bagel with either herb or sun-dried tomato cream cheese,” customer Susan McDaniel said. “You can’t get it anywhere else. It is just amazing.”

In addition to the bagel and cream cheese options, Ultimate Bagel also serves breakfast sandwiches such as, “Egg”cellent Bagel ($4.95) that consists of any flavor bagel, egg, Tillamook cheddar cheese and Canadian bacon. They also serve lunch sandwiches such as the bagel melt ($4.95) which is an open-faced bagel with melted cheese and a choice of meat.

All of the options on the menu looked amazing and it was hard to pick which kind of bagel to try. The employees were helpful and asked questions such as, “Are you thinking something savory or sweet?” I tried the sun-dried tomato bagel with plain cream cheese. The bagel could have been toasted a little more, but overall it was soft and the spread was creamy. The bagel was filling and kept me full long past lunchtime.

Elise Van Dam Staff Writer

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Food review: Coeur has extra cozy factor for over-coffee chats

Coffee shops. They are an ideal place to go when you want to study, read a book, chat with friends or have that awkward “define the relationship” talk with your potential significant other. Coeur Coffeehouse has a comfortable atmosphere with delicious coffee where all that can happen.

Mike Garrison opened Coeur Coffeehouse on 701 N. Monroe St. in June 2012 because he likes coffee and wanted to open a business that would encourage community throughout Spokane. Garrison’s goal for the business is to provide a comfortable atmosphere where the baristas are friendly and serve high-quality coffee to their customers, employee Keaton Violet said.

“We wanted to serve coffee to the people of Spokane,” Violet said. “And it is cool to connect to someone over something as simple as coffee.”

Another goal is to support local businesses. The  shop only uses one type of milk — bought locally from Spokane Family Farms — which pasteurizes the non-homogenized milk at lower temperatures.

“While the milk may be more expensive,” Violet said. “It tastes way better and is also good for you.”

Though Coeur Coffeehouse buys milk locally, the shop purchases coffee outside of Spokane through a free trade company called Stumptown Coffee Roasters in Portland, Ore.

Along with local ingredients and homemade syrups, Coeur Coffeehouse uses a device called Chemex, which was created in the 1930s. The Chemex is an hourglass-shaped glass container that brews a measured amount of coffee grounds through a filter placed at the top. It makes what is called pour-over coffee.

“I am passionate about pour-over coffee,” Violet said. “It allows you to taste the differences in the various types of coffee that we provide.”

The menu also consists of lattes, mochas, drip coffees, espressos and a small variety of tea. The Moroccan mint tea is strong, but refreshing.

For me, coffee is one of my go-to drinks that helps me through a busy schedule. While a tall mocha at Coeur Coffeehouse costs $4.35, versus the same size mocha at Starbucks for $3.42, it is worth buying a cup from Coeur because of the local products and free trade option.

The décor of the shop also makes a difference in the experience. The atmosphere is simple, yet cozy — perfect for reading or chatting. The customer service made the visit complete. The baristas were friendly, knowledgeable of their product, and excited about coffee in general.

Elise Van Dam Staff Writer

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Winter Blues: Gray skies may bring gloomy moods

Winter is approaching, the sun is leaving, and Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) may be a risk. SAD is a temporary form of depression that can affect you at a specific time of the year, especially in the winter. Linda Torretta, a nurse practitioner at the Whitworth health center, described SAD as a steady lack of joy.

“It’s a condition of feeling blue,” Torretta said. “It usually starts a month after Labor Day (after daylight saving time ends) and ends a few weeks after the sunshine has returned.”

Keep an eye out for the following symptoms that escalate in the fall and winter months: hopelessness, increased appetite and weight gain or loss, increased sleep, unhappiness, less energy and ability to concentrate, loss of interest from things that are normally enjoyable, and social withdrawal.

“Symptoms vary on a continuum from mild to severe,” Torretta said. “It is a very individualistic condition. Students from sunnier states such as California, Colorado and Arizona are a greater risk.”

Students from various states were interviewed to find out how Spokane winters affect their mood.


Q: How much sun do you have back home and do you think that affects your mood?

A: Rachel Gerig, sophomore from Colorado: 364 days of sun (or so they say...). So, yeah there’s lots of sunshine in Colorado, which I miss a lot. Even when it snows, there’s sun. I’m definitely happier when it’s a sunny day.

Jessica Hill, sophomore from California: We have sun a majority of the time and I feel like I’m happier when the sun is out.

Laura Bauthues, freshman from Bellingham, Wash.: There’s hardly ever sun. I like it because then it’s not too hot.

Becca Bixby, sophomore from Montana: It’s generally pretty sunny back home and I’m usually much happier when the skies are blue.

Paige Berdan, sophomore from Renton, Wash.: Probably like three months of sun. When it’s not nice out I don’t have as much energy and I just feel kind of “blah.”


Q: What was it like adjusting to Spokane weather?

A: Gerig: Adjusting to Spokane weather wasn’t too bad. I’m just not a big fan of the gloomy, cloudy days without rain. Those aren't fun.

Hill: It was quite an adjustment coming to Spokane. It never snowed in California and I often forget that I need to wear more than long sleeves.

Bixby: Right now it’s snowing in Missoula, so I’m happy to be somewhere I don’t have to wear 50 layers of clothing.

Berdan: There wasn’t really an adjustment from home.


Q: Do you feel yourself getting depressed during winter months? Would you say you have symptoms of SAD?

A: Gerig: I get a little depressed in winter because I’m super white, but other than that I’m great. And snow is pretty awesome so that makes wintertime bearable.

Eli Smith, senior from Hawaii: Definitely had SAD every winter.

Hill: I don’t know if I get Seasonal Affective Disorder, but it is definitely harder to be happy when the skies are so gray and the sun is no longer out.

Hannah Berkimer, freshman from Seattle, Wash.: Yes, it definitely affects my mood.

Bauthues: I don’t feel like I get depressed because I like the gloomy weather.

Bixby: I don’t appreciate the cold, but I love the fun activities snow presents.

Berdan: Yes. I just have no energy and don’t feel like doing anything.


Q: How do you adjust to the seasonal change of mood and what are suggestions to get through it?

A: Gerig: I suggest getting one of those sunny mood lights. Or, you can just go embrace the cold and play in the snow because that’s always fun.

Smith: I just started taking vitamin D pills and that helps so much.

Hill: To adjust, I try to remind myself that the weather is not connected to my mood. I have to enjoy the seasons of this new state.

Berkimer: (Laughs) Prescription medication. Coffee. And making sure to get enough sleep and indulging in things I enjoy.

Bauthues: Find fun stuff to do when it’s gray and rainy that you can’t do in the sun.

Bixby: Generally, focus on the positives of winter and be glad you don’t live in Antarctica. That would suck.

Berdan: I try not to listen to only sad music because you know when it’s cold outside you just want to listen to chill music. And I try to do fun, random things with my friends so I’m not just sitting in my bed all day.


Here is some advice on ways to handle SAD if you feel you might be at risk:

According to Mayo Clinic, there is currently no known way to prevent the onset of seasonal affective disorder. Yet if you take steps to manage symptoms early on you might be able to prevent them from getting worse. Some find it helpful to start treatment before symptoms usually start so that they can curb any serious changes in mood, appetite or energy levels.

Torretta suggested exercise, eating well and getting the right amount of sleep as preventative techniques. Different kinds of treatment include medication, psychotherapy and light therapy.

The SAD light, located in the health center, is free to use and a good idea for all who think they have symptoms of SAD or just want to prevent it.

“Twenty minutes a day using light therapy is extremely beneficial in resetting the circadian cycle,” Torretta said.

Christina Spencer Staff Writer

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Art professor exhibits overseas oil paintings

Bringing landscape paintings and animal portraits from travels abroad, as well as from Washington, Whitworth art professor Gordon Wilson opened a new art exhibit at the Tinman Gallery Oct. 26.

The exhibit, titled “Brunch at Wasnick’s,” boasts 30 paintings from travels to Italy in the summer of 2010 and Germany in 2011, as well as landscapes from Ridgefield, Wash., and Vence, France.

The majority of the oil-on-linen paintings were crafted on site, while others were partially completed abroad and finished in the studio. A few of the paintings are purely studio-made from sketches and memory.

The paintings from Wilson’s stay with friends Ute and Klaus Wasnick in Adelberg, Germany, are the most recently made paintings in the exhibit. During his stay, Wilson frequently visited the neighbors, who own goats, chickens and rabbits.

“It was an experience just to go there,” Wilson said. “I was there to paint landscapes, but the animals were just so interesting.”

His works from Germany include landscape paintings, but Wilson primarily focused on the animals, which he described as social and fun. Paintings of goats at the brunch table, mingling chickens and crows in flight coalesce in Wilson’s first group of paintings with animals.

“I like the direction the paintings with the animals are taking,” said Bryan Oliver Gallery director and art professor Lance Sinnema. “They are very engaging and lively.”

One of the largest paintings in the exhibit displays three female goats and a chicken waiting at a set table with the fence and pasture behind them. The painting, Wilson said, is as life-size as he could make it and embodies the playfulness of the animals.

“We didn’t actually have them to brunch, we had them there in spirit,” Wilson said. “It was important they were on the table side of the fence — they weren’t, but it was much more fun that way.”

The larger paintings in his collection were too large to have been painted on site and thus were painted in Wilson’s studio. Though he was no longer among the animals, Wilson said that as they began to materialize in the painting, they kept him company.

“When I was painting them, it was as if I was confronting them, as if I was meeting them again,” Wilson said. “I’ve never had this much fun painting before.”

“Brunch at Wasnick’s” will be open through Nov. 25 at the Tinman Gallery at 811 W. Garland Ave.


Luke Eldredge Staff Writer

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Take a break, watch some videos

Here are a few recommended time-wasters It is just about halfway through the semester and perhaps your feet are starting to drag, but not for long. Take a break and see if these entertaining YouTube videos pump you up.


“Somebody That I Used to Know” — Walk off the Earth The Canadian indie band, Walk off the Earth, gets creative with a cover of Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used to Know.” Every member of the band uses the same guitar simultaneously to create different sounds. The band has gained increasing popularity without the help of record labels or management by making low-budget music covers, as well as originals. Clearly, simplicity has joined forces with creativity to produce an epic, out-of-the-box performance.

“Payphone” — Avery ft. Max Schneider YouTube artist Avery Iannitelli and Max Schneider sing a cover of Maroon 5’s “Payphone,” but this isn’t just any cover; all of the background instrumentals are done on iPhone instrument apps. Come on people, real instruments are so last year. Oh, technology, what would we do without you?


Epic Rap Battles of History — Obama vs. Romney It’s the political season and what better way to brush off the heat of the upcoming election than with an “Epic Rap Battle.” If you’re having trouble deciding who is actually ahead in the political rat race, check out this video, and with a few laughs, perhaps it’ll help.

A Bad Lip Reading — “Eye of the Sparrow” Presidential Debate How many of you are frustrated with the presidential debates? Interruptions galore, zero respect and failure to actually answer any of the questions. Well, here’s a bad lip reading of what the presidential candidates could have been saying.


Daredevil falls from space

In case you haven’t heard yet, Austrian skydiver Felix Baumgartner free-fell from a capsule 24 miles above the New Mexico desert. Guys, this is four times higher than single passenger jets fly. Wow. He traveled at 833 mph (I guess that’s kind of fast) and succeeded in shattering the sound barrier, something no one has ever done without a jet or rocket. Take a look at this video to witness his amazing feat.

“Why I Hate Religion, but Love Jesus” — poet Jefferson Bethke Religion. Jesus. Think about those two words: whether they belong together, or whether you consider society to have thrown them around, confused the terms and mistaken the rules and regulations of religion for the love of Jesus Christ. Jefferson Bethke, a Christian poet, uses spoken word to highlight the difference between Jesus and false religion. What do you think?


Who You Gonna Call? — Improv Everywhere Halloween is coming up and the ghouls are lurking. This improv troupe brought the movie “Ghostbusters” to life in the reading room of the New York public library as those studying and reading looked on in wonder. Check out Improv Everywhere’s YouTube channel to see their latest ventures. They collectively dived into the ocean in their finest suits and gowns.

Scary Wake Up Pranks College isn’t complete without pranking your roommates. Want some ideas? Check out these scary (hilarious) wake up pranks that leave the peaceful sleeper utterly flabbergasted. And you, well, gasping for air with a newly formed six-pack from the never-ending howls of laughter.

Christina Spencer Staff Writer

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A homemade Halloween

Do-it-yourself costumes for dressing up on a dime

With Halloween coming around the corner, you might be starting to think about this year’s costume. Special Halloween costume stores often run their prices rather high, so why not try making your own this year? These do-it-yourself costumes will definitely be the ones to beat.

Ready to go “Gangnam Style?”

For this costume you will need a blue tuxedo jacket, which can probably be found at a store such as Goodwill. Grab a black fabric marker to outline the black details on the jacket. Next, pull out the cleanest, white button up shirt you have, a black bow tie and some shades.

Meet the New Miss America

If you have access to an old prom dress, all you have to do is find a tiara, some gaudy jewelry, and a bouquet. Then pile on the stage make-up. The last and final piece of the puzzle will be to make yourself a sash from wide white ribbon, with Miss America written in glitter glue.

The name’s Bond, James Bond

Put on a suit (you can most likely find a somewhat cheap one at Value Village), white shirt and bow tie. Can’t tie it? Doesn’t matter. Leave it undone for effect. Add an impressive looking watch, and then summon your most confident, cocky self. That’s it. It’s that easy.

Oompa Loompa Do-ba-dee-doo (I’ve got a perfect costume for you.)

Find an old brown long sleeve shirt and paint white stripes on the collar of the shirt and at the cuffs of the sleeves. Then, strap on some white suspenders. If you don’t have any or don’t want to purchase them, then just glue some ribbon to the shirt to create suspenders. As for the pants, an old pair of baseball pants works great. Pull on some long, brown socks and brown shoes. Next, spray paint a blonde Marilyn Monroe wig green. Finally, paint your face orange with face paint and tape on a few cotton balls above your eyes to create white eyebrows.

The Classic Mummy

For those of you who only have 10 minutes to pull something off, then this costume is definitely for you. Raid your bathroom for toilet paper, wrap yourself up as a mummy, and walk with stiff arms and legs. Squirt some red food coloring all over the toilet paper to look like blood. Just as long as it isn’t raining, this should work great.

Pucker Up Kissing Booth

Find a long box that will cover your head and go down to your waist. Cut out a window in the front of the box and two holes on the sides of the box for your arms. Then, paint the entire box red. Next, tape some kind of curtains in the window of the box. Make a sign that says “Kissing Booth” and glue it to the front of the box. Now it’s time to put on some lipstick and pucker up for some freebie Halloween night kisses. Better yet, charge a quarter a kiss for a profitable costume.

Ashlynn Phillips Staff Writer

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Festival celebrates apples

More than 40 farms and orchards are participating in the Apple Festival at Green Bluff, a yearly festival held by the Green Bluff Grower’s organization to celebrate the yearly apple harvest.

One of the largest venues for the Apple Festival is the Harvest House, a 20-acre orchard on the intersection of Green Bluff Road and Day Mt. Spokane Road.

The Harvest House hosts dozens of vendors who offer everything from kettle corn to face painting. Live music and horse-drawn carriage rides are also included in the harvest fair activities, and of course, no festival would be complete without a corn maze.

“My favorite part about the orchard was the fact that you could pick fresh fruit and eat it right there,” Seth Flanders said, a Whitworth sophomore who visited the Harvest House on a dorm outing. “Oh, and climbing ladders was fun,” Flanders said.

Marilyn Beck has owned the farm with her family since it opened in 1987.

“Our philosophy with our success up here is that we have tried to fill a lot of voids and a lot of needs, and we consider our farm a full package deal,”  Beck said.

While the Harvest House may seem to have it all, it is just one of the 47 places to visit on a tour of the Apple Festival. Each ranch, farm, granary and winery has its own unique flavor. Take for instance Siemers Farm, off the beaten path, but easily recognizable by the four-story castle rising from its corn maze.

Donna Siemers has owned the farm since it opened in 1975, and has participated in the Apple Festival since it started 26 years ago. The farm features a pumpkin patch, food vendors, pedal cars for kids of all ages and the  corn maze with the castle called the Kingdom of Id.

To date, Siemers herself holds the track record on the farm for the fastest lap around the pedal-car track at one minute and ten seconds.

For Siemers, and for the workers at her farm, the work is hard, but rewarding. Brandon Hertz, who has been working for the farm for two and a half years, said he likes it because of all the people he meets.

“People aren’t in too much of a hurry. We see a lot of regulars, and they like to stop and chat for a bit,” Hertz said.

The farm features pumpkin, squash, apples, carrots and corn, along with a multitude of other fresh produce. The pride of Siemers Farm are their honeycrisp apples.

“Green Bluff produces the best quality produce that you can find,” Siemers said. “These apples test 25 to 35 percent higher in natural sugar than apples raised in other areas. You can taste the difference. Go out and have one of those honeycrisp apples, you’ve never tasted anything that good.”

Lucas Thayer Staff Writer

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Dress boutique sells ‘keepers’

Dresses, dresses, and more dresses. Toss in a couple pairs of shoes and a wall of hats, and you’ve got Finders Keepers II. This designer dress boutique on 18 W. Main Ave. has everything from prom and bridal gowns to derby hats and custom-made earrings. Right now, Finders Keepers II is full of sparkly sequined dresses for the homecoming season.

“The best part about working here is helping customers find exactly what they are looking for,” manager Allyssa Heiskell said. “It’s so fun helping find that perfect dress and then putting the whole outfit together for whatever occasion it is.”

Dresses range from $59 to $500 and the store offers 25 percent off jewelry and accessories when a dress is purchased. Finders Keepers II has a sister store named Finders Keepers – Jewelry Galore, which is located on 309 W. 2nd Ave. This store has custom-made and vintage jewelry from many different time periods. The jewelry store has been open for more than 15 years and Finders Keepers II has been open for five.

Heiskell’s mother, Deena Caruso, is the owner of Finders Keepers and originally opened the store as an antique shop with vintage clothing.

“She had a knack and a good eye for finding good stuff,” Heiskell said. “When she opened the store, the jewelry was a big hit.”

Finders Keepers II participates in the fashion show at the Spokane Club, as well as the Red Cross Fashion Show. Also, 20 percent of their hat sales go toward the Ronald McDonald House.

“We also take part in the Pumpkin Ball, and donate 20 percent back to the charity when they purchase a dress,” Heiskell said.

Not only is some jewelry handmade, but Caruso designs many of the hair accessories as well. She creates flowery pieces, bobby pins, and headbands. The store also has an event tracking system.

“We keep track of the events going on in the area so that we won’t sell two of the same dresses to one event,” Heiskell said.

Lee Caruso, an employee of Finders Keepers II for the past six months, said the best part of working there is the people that come in.

“Most of the time the store is very energetic; there are a lot of people always coming in and out,” Lee Caruso said. “It’s so much fun helping hand pick things out for our customers.”

Not only does the store have dresses for homecoming and prom, but also bridal gowns and dresses for bridesmaids.

In March, Finders Keepers II starts getting dresses in for their busy prom season. Whitworth freshman Jeannette Potter got her dress there last spring.

“The girls working there helped us find dresses that they thought would look good, since they have such a large selection,” Potter said. “All the girls were so sweet and encouraging.”

Ashlynn Phillips Staff Writer

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Vintage parlor serves up sweets

Life can be sweet when you have a big scoop of ice cream on a hot day, and Doyle’s Ice Cream Parlor can provide just that.

Doyle’s Ice Cream Parlor first opened its doors in 1939. Due to the Natatorium Park down the hill from the parlor and the trolley tracks that came down Boone Street, the ice cream parlor became a hot spot for both commuters and amusement park lovers alike.

Since 1939, the culture and layout of Spokane has changed drastically. The land where the Natatorium Park sat is now a mobile home park and the trolley tracks on Boone Street have been overtaken by asphalt and cars, yet Doyle’s Ice Cream Parlor  still stands as a beacon of what it once was, serving its locals with old time favorites.

Twenty-one years ago Jerry Gill became the owner of the ice cream parlor, but it did not come easily.

“I didn’t know one thing about making ice cream,” Gill said. “The recipes and people have helped out a lot.”

For many years he wanted to buy the parlor and bring it back to life after it had been closed from 1986 to 1990, but various circumstances made it a struggle.

“I came here when I was a little kid,” Gill said. “I lived two doors down from the shop and I knew the history, so I wanted to save it.”

Just when it seemed like he would never own the shop, opportunities opened up and it fell into his lap, he said.

Despite former struggles, the homemade ice cream and unique decor kept customers coming back for more. Gill and the employees still make homemade ice cream and waffle cones using original recipes from the beginning to the parlor’s existence.

Besides traditional ice cream flavors, the menu includes banana splits, root beer floats and sundaes. The eclectic decor of the shop makes it stand out from other ice cream venues. Each of the walls are covered with retro memorabilia from old soda advertisements to antique toys,  including race cars and Mickey Mouse dolls.

Keith Kelley is Whitworth University’s director for the center of service learning and community engagement and a West Central resident. He has a passion for building community and telling others about the uniqueness of West Central.

“As a community member, it is so special to experience such a wonderful, living relic of Spokane’s history,” Kelley said. “It’s always a delight to congregate with neighbors and enjoy delicious homemade ice cream on a warm summer evening.”

Doyle’s Ice Cream Parlor has become a local favorite for all ages. People from all over Spokane County come to enjoy a scoop of ice cream. Gill said grandparents come in with their grandchildren and tell them stories about how they used to come into the parlor for a treat when they were little.

Elise Van Dam Staff Writer

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Writer speaks on searching for God through doubt

In her junior year of college, Andrea Palpant Dilley scraped the Christian fish decal off the bumper of her Plymouth hatchback, a symbol of her discontent with the church and foreshadowing her eventual departure from it.

Dilley, a documentary writer, director and producer, read from her recent book, “Faith and Other Flat Tires: Searching for God on the Rough Road of Doubt,” in the Weyerhaeuser Hall Robinson Teaching Theatre on Sept. 21. Her book is the memoir of her abandonment and subsequent return to faith, God and the Church.

Dilley was raised in Kenya, the daughter of Quaker medical missionaries. She grew up visiting patients that died the next day and attending funerals. Even the hospital morgue was only 50 feet from her front door. Her later childhood was spent in the Pacific Northwest as a member of a committed Presbyterian church. For college, she stayed in the Northwest, attending Whitworth where she obtained degrees in English literature, writing and Spanish.

“She was someone who other students looked up to, which was a very unique position,” said Maggie Wolcott, Whitworth English professor and former classmate of Dilley. “She was very kind, with a sarcastic edge.”

Being surrounded by intelligent, conscientious Christians gave Dilley room to struggle with faith and God. She asked questions that vex doubters and believers alike: Why does God seem so distant? Why does the church feel so dysfunctional? Why does God allow suffering?

At age 23, Dilley walked out of the Church with no intention of going back. For two years Dilley wanted nothing to do with faith or God.

Yet at age 25, Dilley found herself returning to the Church for the same reasons she left.

“I had to believe in God to believe in justice, which is anchored in objective morality,” Dilley said.

Senior Shaina Whittlesey said that doubts in the faith are often seen as something to be ashamed of and thus not shared.

“I liked the honesty she used when talking about doubt,” said Whittlesey.

Dilley said she believes that doubt belongs in the sanctuary of Church. All her questions belong in the Church; it is the only place that offered her the space to search for God.

“I’ll always have demons, but I might as well take my demons to church,” Dilley said. “Sitting in church every Sunday, my doubt is my desire — to touch the untouchable, to possess the presence of God,” Dilley said.

Luke Eldredge Staff Writer

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Music review: The Avett Brothers delivers album of contrasting emotions

You know those songs that seem to capture your soul and before you know it your toes are tapping and your head is swaying? Well, the Avett Brothers has mastered the mysterious art of connecting listeners to symbolic meanings much deeper than a mere scramble of lyrics. I’d call it an erratic mixture of emotions that somehow all flow together. Know what I mean? It’s like one moment you’re singing along to a melancholic verse, and the next your heart is pounding to the upbeat and synergistic chorus.

Scott and Seth Avett have been into music ever since they were young and once played in a rock band named Nemo. Eventually, in 2000, the band became The Avett Brothers (Bob Crawford was added as Bass guitarist) and it was not until two years later that they hit the road running and released their debut album “Country Was.”

The band’s music is a combination of country and folk, and has a modern day Beatles vibe mixed with the blues of Doc Watson. I saw the Avett Brothers live this summer at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Denver, Colo., and their passion flowed out from their voices and collective instruments in all directions; all coming together to create this magical noise.

The Avett Brothers released their newest album, “The Carpenter,” on Sept. 11. Once again they have hit the target with the overarching goal of music: relating to their audience and capturing the pure, simple peace that music brings.

Similar to previous albums, this one is so very real, and when you really listen to the words they pull you towards a conundrum of pensive thought. Every song is a story, one that pulls you in and makes you feel at home with the melodic folk beat. And in each is several lessons that we can all connect with.

In the song “Once and Future Carpenter,” Scott Avett sings, “Well we’re all in this together, If I live the life I’m given, I won’t be scared to die.” How many of us are constantly wishing for something better than the circumstances we’ve been given instead of simply living without fear of the future. Motivational, right?

Looking at the band’s big success album, “I and Love and You,” the Avett Brothers’ new album returns to the rebellious arrangements and whimsically jaunty lyrics of that and earlier albums. As is seen in their song, “Through My Prayers,” the contagious background humming of the cello and the elevating picking of the banjo chime perfectly through their song’s mixtures of light and dark, comedy and tragedy, and fast and slow. Check out “The Carpenter” and get ready for a roller coaster wave of emotional enrapturement.

Christina Spencer Staff Writer

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Film review: False guru fools them all

Intrigued by the popularity of Eastern spirituality in the United States, New Jersey filmmaker Vikram Gandhi began research for a yoga documentary. Instead of completing that project, Gandhi addressed the competitive, insincere and downright corrupt practices witnessed in gurus in both America and India in his film “Kumaré.”  Backed by a degree of skepticism developed at an early age, Vikram Gandhi demonstrates the illusions of spirituality.

Donning the disguise of spiritual guru, Sri Kumaré, Gandhi establishes a life-changing alter ego in his film, “Kumaré: The True Story of a False Prophet.” As Kumaré, Gandhi grows out his hair and beard, adopts the loose, colorful garments of the berber tradition and mimics the voice of his grandmother while embarking on his journey in Arizona.

As anticipated, Kumaré acquires a following of devoted students, all who revere his assumedly authentic and wise teachings. Doling out impromptu blessings and gibberish chants, the guru meets some exceptionally quirky individuals and shares a part in deeply personal growth.

Still, perhaps the most touching progression is that of the narrator and guru himself. Though Gandhi remarks that he is shocked by the faith individuals have in someone no different than themselves, he too begins to believe in the rituals of his own creation. Eventually, Gandhi says that his ideal self is given life in the character, Kumaré.

“Kumaré” is a thoughtful and challenging documentary with an engaging accompaniment of humor and emotion. This film challenges the audience to question the authenticity and authority of spiritual leaders. It asks the viewer to consider beliefs and religious practices outside their own, no matter how unusual. At the insistence of Kumaré himself, one is encouraged to find the guru inside him or herself.

“Kumaré: The True Story of a False Prophet” will be playing at the Magic Lantern Theatre (25 West Main Avenue in downtown Spokane) at 2:30 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, and 8:45 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

Laryssa Lynch Staff Writer

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Now open: McClain’s Pizzeria

All it takes is dough, tomato sauce and cheese to make a basic pizza; but the cooks add so much more at McClain’s Pizzeria. Matt and Mi-Mi Heilman opened McClain’s Pizzeria (10208 N. Division St.) on Sept. 4.

Matt and Mi-Mi worked for Subway Sandwich Shop for a combined total of 39 years before they opened their own business. The idea to start a pizzeria came from Matt’s experience working at his friend’s family pizzeria. His friend used the recipes to start McClain’s Pizzeria in Hailey, Idaho. The Heilmans bought some of the recipes from the original McClain’s pizzeria to start their own. They are not currently a franchise, but are working on it.

The founding principle of McClain’s Pizzeria is based on a simple equation: good customer service combined with good products results in a good business.

“We know that our product is different from other pizzerias in Spokane,” Mi-Mi said. “It is simple but different.”

The Heilmans believe that their product is different because they make their dough fresh every day and add a secret ingredient to make it stand out from other restaurants.

The Heilmans also make their own sauce, use an Italian cheese that is new to the United States and only buy high-quality produce as ingredients for their recipes.

“The pizza was good,” customer Meaghan McCluskey said. “The sauce was tasty and had just the right amount of spice. Also, the gluten-free crust had a good taste; it did not taste like cardboard.”

The menu consists of pizza, sandwiches, calzones, salads, spaghetti and wings. Customers can build their own pizzas by choosing different meat, vegetable and cheese toppings. Or they can choose a specific type of pizza, such as the McClain’s Combo that includes Canadian bacon, pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, black olives and red onions. The menu also includes vegetarian options such as a veggie sandwich, a veggie combo pizza, a build-your-own calzone or salads.

The Heilmans are hoping to add single pizza slices to their menu starting in the upcoming weeks in an effort to attract more college students.

“We just want it to be a fun atmosphere where you can watch your food being made,” Mi-Mi said.

Elise Van Dam Staff Writer