Tonya Strickland

Tonya Strickland is a Gig Harbor mom-of-two, longtime journalist, and Instagram influencer in the family and travel niche. Her blog, Two in Tow & On the Go, was recently named among the 10 Seattle-Area Instagram Accounts to Follow by ParentMap magazine. Tonya and her husband Bowen moved to Gig Harbor from California in 2021 with their two young kids, Clara and Wyatt. When they’re not adventuring, Tonya stays busy navigating how umbrellas are unacceptable life choices now, giant house spiders exist but only in September and the reality that salted parking lots are absolutely not weird at all. Find her on Instagram and Facebook for all the kid-friendly places in and around Gig Harbor.

Two in Tow & On the Go: Megalodon at Point Defiance, a PNW tradition

Mar 24, 2023

Last year, Clara, Wyatt, and I stumbled upon a much-loved tradition that locals have been carrying out for decades.

And now that we know, it’s one we’re adopting forever.

There we were, at Tacoma’s Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, just walking down the path (with Wyatt running 10 feet ahead) toward the Asian Forest Sanctuary, ready to check out some big ‘ol tigers  — when wham! Giant shark teeth appeared in our periphery. 

Two in Tow & On the Go: Getting out of the house

Mar 09, 2023

You know more about us now that we’re on my fifth column here at everyone’s favorite news site. Like how I’m a sucker for a historical throwback, my love language involves a fenced-in playground, Clara and Wyatt are officially willing to forgo swings for forests, and our approach to kiddo safety may be a bit dramatic. 

But before spotlighting our next outing, why not take this getting-to-know-us stage a step further? 

Don’t worry; I won’t make it weird. 

I will, however, let you in on a little secret.

Two in Tow & On the Go | Harbor Family Park – A Forest of Fun

Feb 23, 2023

One thing I’ve noticed about Washington is the reminder that not all parks are playgrounds. What may seem like a simple synonym snafu is actually quite the conundrum when these tiny humans of ours are steadfast on playing at the slide-and-swing variety.

I’m not sure why this life fact didn’t pop up for me in California, but I do know that legions of outdoor enthusiasts are now lining up behind their keyboards to say: “But, Tonya! Gig Harbor’s beautiful backdrop of beaches, trails, and trees is the only playground we’d ever need!”

I hear you. I do. Well, I almost do – because it’s pretty hard to concentrate with my children protesting from the backseat after our promised trip to “the park” turned up a legit forest instead.

Luckily, Clara and Wyatt have quickly adapted to Washington’s wild ways and have even come to regularly request that very same location: the densely wooded Harbor Family Park at 6620 32nd St. NW. Conveniently, it’s also the closest park to our house! And, you guessed it, it doesn’t have a swing in sight. 

Two in Tow & On the Go: Three Mom Hacks for Walking the Tacoma Narrows Bridge with Kids

Feb 09, 2023

Being from Southern California, I’ve never lived in a town with bridges before. You know, besides the concrete jungle freeway overpass variety. But I’ve always been wowed by crossings that

Two in Tow & On the Go: Kids’ Gig playground charms with nods to local landmarks

Jan 27, 2023

After two decades of play, faded paint and missing parts, much of The Kids’ Gig local history is lost to Gig Harbor newcomers like us. 

So the kids and I recently set out to rediscover what’s been lost clues built into the park’s design, current pics, internet archives, and historical photos to help bring those cool features back to light.

Read on to see what we found.

Two in Tow & On the Go: Get to know Crescent Creek Park

Jan 12, 2023

Hey, guys! The new year is officially upon us and I’m excited to be writing my very first column in Gig Harbor Now to share all the local places to take kids in 2023. But, before we move forward, let’s take a quick look back. Way back – to 1915 when the site of Gig Harbor’s present-day Crescent Creek Park first began to take shape.