They say you can’t teach an old dog a new trick, but nowadays, this cliché saying is older than the dog and is one we should all probably be dead and buried in the backyard already. After all, learning has proven time and time again that it has no age restrictions, and it’s never too late to take up a new skill! And with so many learning centers to expand your knowledge here in Tacoma’s South Sound community, there are plenty of places to learn a new trick!

Olympia Orthopaedic Associates

Learn Cooking Skills with Culinary Classes, Thanks to Metro Parks Tacoma at the Star Center

3873 66th Street, Tacoma

Metro Parks Tacoma understands that cooking is fundamental, so community members are welcome to join in on their cooking classes at the Star Center. Classes range from homeschool culinary classes designated for those ages 8 to 16 to culinary art classes for those that are 50 or older.

Through these courses, students will explore a variety of cuisines and culinary techniques while experimenting with new flavors from various herbs and spices. Once you feel you’ve perfected the art of cooking, take your new skills to new heights by signing up for one of their baking classes as well.

South Sound learning centers
The Star Center hosts a variety of cooking classes for various age groups so they can perfect that students can perfect their culinary skills. Photo courtesy: Metro Parks Tacoma

Prune Your Gardening Skills at EnviroHouse

3510 S Mullen Street, Tacoma

Offering free home and garden workshops to South Sound residents is Tacoma’s green building and natural landscape exhibit, EnviroHouse. Plenty of seminars are available online for registration, including topics on pruning fruit trees, planning, prep, planting and maintaining rain gardens, and growing living soil for healthy, productive gardens.

They also offer workshops on a wide variety of other topics, such as maintaining mason bees, how to get started with city chickens and ducks, and managing yard waste by creating worm compost.

South Sound learning centers
At EnviroHouse, students learn how to garden and even learn home improvement skills. Photo credit: David Guest

Express Your Creativity with Workshops at the Museum of Glass

1801 Dock Street, Tacoma

Discover your inner artist with the help of workshops at Tacoma’s Museum of Glass. The Education Studio at the museum invites visitors to create their own art with a variety of hands-on workshops inspired by the museum’s current exhibitions, the season, events, and various other factors. Crafts and activities range from glassmaking and fusing to sketching and painting, providing ample opportunity to explore your creative side while learning new skills.

South Sound learning centers
Discover your dream of becoming a glass artist with the help of workshops in glass blowing at Tacoma’s Museum of Glass. Photo courtesy: Museum of Glass

Learn Skills of the Past at Heritage Skills Workshops at the Fort Nisqually Living History Museum

5519 Five Mile Drive, Tacoma

Have you ever thought about the distant past and wondered how some things used to be made or how people used to do certain things back in the day? Well, you’re in luck because Heritage Skills Workshops at Fort Nisqually Living History Museum offer such courses. Through these workshops, they’re able to preserve traditional skills through instruction, demonstration, and experiential learning.

A wide variety of workshops are available for registration and include such courses as learning butchering and curing methods from the 19th century, leather working workshops, and discovering how to make tinplate candle holders that would have supported early American lighting by candlelight.  

South Sound learning centers
At Fort Nisqually Living History Museum, you can learn heritage skills such as leatherwork and even butchering and curing meats. Photo courtesy: Fort Nisqually Living History Museum

Get Your Hands Dirty at Bonsai Workshops at the Pacific Bonsai Museum

2515 South 336th Street, Federal Way

If you’ve ever wanted to try cultivating a bonsai plant, well, you’re in luck here in South Sound! Not too far away is the Pacific Bonsai Museum in Federal Way, and they’re offering interactive classes where you’ll learn about the art of bonsai.

Students will be given an opportunity to create their own juniper bonsai to take home, along with the knowledge of how to care for it. The class is designed for novices of all ages looking to create their first bonsai, and if after the first class, you find yourself wanting to come back for more, simply sign up for Aarin’s Advanced Bonsai Workshop!

South Sound learning centers
Leave with your own bonsai plant to take care of after taking a class at the Pacific Bonsai Museum in Federal Way. Photo courtesy: Pacific Bonsai Museum

Expand Your History Knowledge While Visiting Museums in South Sound

Speaking of history, community members who thoroughly enjoy learning about the past can expand their historical knowledge with visits to any of the South Sound’s many museums. Like learning about old cars? Head on over to LeMay – America’s Car Museum. Have an interest in art? Then, immerse yourself in colors at the Tacoma Art Museum. Do you have a unique curiosity for old-timey telephones? You can even learn about those at the Tacoma Telephone Pioneer Museum!  

Save a Life with CPR Classes With Free Community CPR Classes

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation, otherwise known as CPR, is a combination of rescue breathing and chest compression that can make a difference between life and death during incidents such as cardiac arrest and drowning. For this reason, it is recommended by first responders, like that of the Tacoma Fire Department, that every member of your home know CPR.

Those looking to learn this life-saving skill but have never had the opportunity to do so can attend free community classes just as long as they reside in Tacoma, Fife, or Firecrest. Classes are about three hours long and alternate between Fire Station 16 on 6th Avenue and Fire Station 8 on Alaska Street.  

Of course, these aren’t the only places in the South Sound community to expand your knowledge and learn a new skill. Your local Tacoma Public Library and many others throughout the region are always an excellent resource for those looking to expand their horizons and educate themselves in new skills, trades, and know-how!