Reporting from the heart of Cascadia


Unseasonal Sounds

Say no to Christmas creep

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Christmas creep is real.

This year, I saw my first Christmas display the day after Halloween. I walked into a store in downtown Bellingham expecting to see marked-down candy and costumes and instead walked smack into Kris Kringle, his associates and some of their accoutrements. I’m unabashedly, annoyingly infected with the spirit of the season every year, but even so, I was like, “Go home, Santa. It’s November 1. No one wants to see your bowl full of jelly just yet.”


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Magpie Murders

A mystery within a mystery

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Now that there’s been snow in the lowlands of Whatcom County and the sun sets before 5pm, it’s time to flip on the gas fireplace and cozy up with a stack of mysteries from the library. Anthony Horowitz’s latest thriller is just the thing to take your mind off the weather and distressing news headlines.

The tale begins in the London flat of Susan Ryeland, longtime editor of the Atticus Pünd detective novels. She’s just received the manuscript of Magpie Murders, Alan Conway’s…

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Storm Warning

Blessings of a blowdown

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

When a limb from a century-old tree hits a house, it feels like it’s been rammed by a Humvee.

I know this because during a gnarly windstorm in mid-October, the stately maple that has been gracing the second lot of my front yard since long before I moved to Bellingham’s York neighborhood in the winter of 2000 succumbed to the elements.

I was vacuuming the basement when the tree attacked the roof, but I still heard the reverberating boom. As I rushed upstairs, I took note of a jagged…

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Doing good things

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Spend half an hour in a restaurant and you can typically tell if its owners know what they’re doing.

At Camber, one of the newest additions to Bellingham’s food and coffee scene, it’s obvious from the get-go that the three partners at its helm are nothing short of brilliant. The food is exceptional, the atmosphere is warm, bright and friendly, the coffee is utterly divine and the space itself is nothing short of wow.

David Yake and his partners Andrew Bowman and Todd Elliott…

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ICU Roof #2
On Stage

Alps Alert

Getting in on the act

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Last week, my officemate and I spent a few minutes of our deadline countdown belting out verses from “My Favorite Things.”

It may not have been the appropriate time or place to croon about “raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens” or “bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens,” but once we started singing the hit from The Sound of Music, it was difficult to stop.

Truth be told, I could’ve sung the entire canon from the 1965 Academy Award-winning musical starring a dewy-eyed…

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ICU Roof #2

Loving Vincent

Art imitates art

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Loving Vincent is billed as the “world’s first fully painted feature film,” and I have no reason to doubt the claim. The Vincent in the title of this very strange movie is the great Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh, and you would think he already had more than his share of biopics.

The most famous, of course, is Vincente Minnelli’s very fine Lust for Life, starring Kirk Douglas in one of his best seething performances. Maurice Pialat’s Van Gogh has its adherents, as does Paul…

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Creative Gifting

Holiday helpers, take two

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

In an era when it’s possible to knock items off a holiday shopping list without even having to get out of your bathrobe and leave your domicile, it’s refreshing to find that there still remains a plethora of choices for those who are still willing to step away from the computer screen to focus on creative gifting. For those on the lookout for options about what to get art-lovers in their lives, read on for details about a few events taking place this coming weekend that will help…

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ICU Roof #2

State of the Sound

Progress in Whatcom County, but poor marks for the Salish Sea

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

As the number of endangered Southern Resident orca whales continues to decline and Puget Sound Chinook salmon remain threatened, officials say the need to save the two species is becoming dire.

A leading theory is the whales are starving because they cannot find enough Chinook salmon, the endangered fish that the resident orcas eat almost exclusively. Concerns are increasing that the iconic whales are on a path to extinction.

The leadership council for the state’s Puget Sound…

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Best of Bellingham
Best Band

The Wednesdays

Music scenes, including ours, have traditionally been boys’ clubs—but the Wednesdays win in this category is a welcome indication of a change that has been a long time in coming. Unabashedly feminist and unapologetically political, the Wednesdays are making music with a message—and people are listening. With a motto of “Dismantling the patriarchy by day, playing basement blues punk by night,” coupled with an electrifying live show, the Wednesdays are making their mark and making it count.

See all the winners »
The Gristle
Napkin Plan

NAPKIN PLAN: While late ballots were flooding in countywide on Election Day, outgoing Port of Bellingham Commissioner Michael McAuley used one of his last opportunities to cast a different kind of vote—a vote of no confidence in a flawed process that has produced a startlingly different…

Big Blue Wall

Last week, with the election of Manka Dhingra, Democrats gained control of the Washington State Senate and we finished building the Blue Wall between California, Oregon, and Washington.

Today, we begin implementing an agenda that truly represents our core values. We will now block Trump…

Village Books
Gambling for the thrill of the kill

A month later, the authorities, despite great efforts, have been unable to unearth a motive for the horrendous slaughter in Las Vegas. Investigators may still discover an explanation that…

Freed from jail

A hardy thank you to everyone who stood tall in opposition to the now-defunct jail tax–Proposition 2017- 6.  You did not “stand down,” it was not a “done deal,” the “ship had not…

Seek a common good

Who are we? What are we looking for in a leader?
We are stuck in a paradigm that does not work. The world is more than black and white.
Our two political parties are stuck in an…

Bellingham Farmer’s Market
Today's Events
Home for the Holidays


Seasonal decor, distinctive gift items and gourmet foods can be purchased at the 36th annual “Home for the Holidays” from 5-9pm Thursday, 9:30am-9pm Friday, and 9:30am-5pm Saturday at the…

The 39 Steps


Alfred Hitchcock’s The 39 Steps concludes this week with 7pm performances Thursday through Saturday at the Sehome High School Little Theatre, 2700 Bill McDonald Pkwy. Tickets to see the…

Little Women


Northwest Washington Theatre Group presents performances of the musical version of Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women this week at 7pm Thursday through Saturday at Ferndale High School, 5830…

Peter and the Star Catcher


Squalicum High School Drama presents showings of Peter and the Star Catcher at 7pm Thursday through Saturday, and 2pm Sunday at the school’s Forum space, 3773 E. McLeod Rd. Tickets to the…

Romeo, You Idiot!


The comedic Romeo, You Idiot! shows at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday at the Heiner Theater at Whatcom Community College, 231 W. Kellogg Rd. Tickets to see the irreverent spoof of…



Neil Simon’s comedic fable, Fools, concludes this week with performances at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday, and 2:30pm Sunday at the Mount Baker High School auditorium, 4936 Deming Rd. The…

Craft Bazaar


Attend an annual Craft Bazaar from 9am-5pm Friday and Saturday at Sedro-Woolley’s American Legion Post #43, 701 Murdock St. Lunch will be served from 11am-2pm both days.

Holiday Festival of the Arts


More than 100 local artists and craftspeople will show and sell their creative wares as part of Allied Arts’ 38th annual “Holiday Festival of the Arts” starting this week and continuing from…

Hot Cider & Cool Art


Painter Ben Man will host “Hot Cider & Cool Art” from 10am-4pm every Friday and Saturday through December at his third-floor space in the Morgan Block Studios, 1000 Harris Ave. Among the…

Used Book Sale


Find something for everyone at a Used Book Sale taking place from 10am-5pm Friday and Saturday behind People Bank across from the Everson Library, 104 Kirsch Dr. Proceeds benefit the Friends…

Red Barn Handpicked Holiday Market


More than 50 craft, vintage, repurposed and gift vendors will show and sell their creative wares at a Red Barn Handpicked Holiday Market taking place from 12-9pm Friday, and 10am-4pm Saturday…

Holiday Gifts from the Kitchen


Cindy McKinney will demonstrate the creation of a wide array of gifts from the kitchen—including tangy honey mustard, bacon jam, scone mix, peanut butter cups and a few quick candies—at…

It's Where the Sidewalk Ends


Pixie students ages 5-8 will perform a version of Shel Silverstein’s whimsical adventure, It’s Where the Sidewalk Ends, at 6pm Friday and Saturday at the Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth,…

New Music, New Dance


Audiences can witness the collaboration between local choreographers and composers at the annual “New Music, New Dance” performances at 7:30pm Friday and Saturday at Western Washington…

The Big Short One-Act Festival


Watch three student-directed contemporary plays at performances of “The BIG SHORT One-Act Festival” at 7:30pm Friday and Saturday at Mount Vernon’s McIntyre Hall, 2501 E. College Way. The…

Bellingham Repertory Dance's Emerge


Expect to see debut performances of new works by nationally acclaimed choreographers when Bellingham Repertory Dance presents showings of “Emerge” at 7:30pm Friday and Saturday, and 5pm…

Backyard Brawl


Two members of the audience will be chosen to act as team captains at performances of “Backyard Brawl” at 8pm and 10pm Friday and Saturday at the Upfront Theatre, 1208 Bay St. The new format…

VFW Breakfast


Enjoy a breakfast of pancakes, French toast, eggs and sausage at a VFW Breakfast happening from 8-11am at Lynden’s VFW Hall, 7011 Hannegan Rd. Entry is $6 (free for kids 5 and under).

Pancake Breakfast


Choose from pancakes, French toast or biscuits and gravy at a Pancake Breakfast taking place from 8-11am at the Ferndale Senior Center, 1999 Cherry St. Entry is $2.50 for kids and $6 for…

Pancake Feed


Boy Scouts of America Troop 4019 will host an all-you-can-eat Pancake Feed from 8am-12pm at VFW Post 1585, 625 N. State St. Tickets are $5.50 for one and $21 for five, and include eggs,…

Holiday Bazaar


Local artists and crafters will show and sell their wares at Gardenview Montesorri’s 11th annual Holiday Bazaar taking place from 9am-3pm at Hillcrest Chapel, 1400 Larrabee Ave. A silent…

Christmas in the Woods


Expect surprises and fun throughout the day as organizers showcase holiday gifts and evergreens at a “Christmas in the Woods” Open House happening from 9am-5pm at the Garden Spot Nursery, 900…

NSEA Work Party


Join the Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association for a Work Party to help improve salmon habitat along Landing Strip Creek from 9am-12pm starting at Acme Elementary School, 5200 Turkington…

Turkey Trot


Join the Greater Bellingham Running Club for its annual “Turkey Trot” starting at 9am at Squalicum Creek Park, 1001 Squalicum Way. Entry to the 5K run and walk is $8 per person or $20 per…

Climate Reality


Join the League of Women Voters for a “Climate Reality: Hope Through Action” event from 10am-12pm at the downstairs lecture room at the Bellingham Public Library, 210 Central Ave. Two…

South Fork Winterfest


Live music by Mockingbird, arts and crafts, unique holiday gifts, refreshments and more will be part of the South Fork Winterfest taking place from 10am-4pm at Deming’s Van Zandt Community…

Fall Gardening


WSU Whatcom County Extension Master Gardeners will show you how to protect and enhance your garden soil through cover crops, mulch, drainage strategies, soil tests, crop rotation and more at…

Cheese Fest


Sample exotic internationally and locally sourced sheep, goat and bovine cheeses at the 47th annual “Cheese Fest” taking place from 10am-6pm Saturday and Sunday in Van Zandt at Everybody’s…

Bellingham Farmers Market


The 25th season of the Bellingham Farmers Market continues from 10am-3pm every Saturday through December at the Depot Market Square, 1000 Railroad Ave. Every week, a plethora of produce,…

Rexville Grange Holiday Art Show


Paintings, pottery, glass art, photography, jewelry, fine crafts, weaving, woodwork and much more will be available for purchase and perusal at the Rexville Grange Holiday Art Show from…

Holiday Farmers Market


Stock up on holiday produce, your favorite vendors’ goods, handmade gifts and much more when the Anacortes Farmers Market hosts it annual Holiday Market from 10am-4pm Saturday and Sunday at…

Lynden Book Club


Discuss Madeleine Thien’s Do Not Say We Have Nothing: A Novel at an Award-Winning Book Club meeting taking place from 10:30am-12pm at the Everson Library, 216 4th St. Even if you didn’t…

Salmon Sighting


Celebrate the return of Pacific salmon by joining Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association naturalists for a “Salmon Sighting” event from 12-3pm along Haynie Creek near Custer’s Dakota Creek…

Conquering Writer's Block


Attend a “Conquering Writer’s Block” workshop from 2-4pm at Sudden Valley’s South Whatcom Library, 10 Barn View Court. At the hands-on event, Kent Sisco will demonstrate the free software…

Fishboy Holiday Show


View and purchase new and classic works by folk artist RR Clark at the annual FishBoy Holiday Show taking place from 2-9m at FishBoy Gallery, 617 Virginia St. (near Trader Joe’s).

NaNoWriMo and Indie Publishing


Local author Susan Colleen Browne will chat about the independent publishing process and how to get started as an indie author at a “NaNoWriMo and Indie Publishing” presentation from 3-4:30pm…

Skagit Wine & Beer Festival


Enjoy beer and spirits from regions throughout Washington—including local Skagit County wineries, microbrews and spirits—as well as gourmet appetizers and divine chocolate samples at the…

Homeless Summit and Cold Weather Giveaway


Attend a Homeless Summit and Cold Weather Giveaway being hosted by HomesNOW! Not Later from 3-5pm at Maritime Heritage Park, 500 W. Holly St.

i.e. artists talk


Attend an artist talk focusing on David C. Kane’s “37 Little Enigmas” and Victor Sandblom’s “Still Listening for the Sound” at 3:30pm at Edison’s i.e. gallery, 5800 Cains…

Small Works Opening


Attend an opening party and potluck for the 27th annual small works show, “Honey, I Shrunk the Art,” from 4-9pm at Camano Island’s Matzke Fine Art Gallery and Sculpture Park, 2345 Blanche…

Smith & Vallee Artist Talk


Skagit Valley artists Jane Alynn, Margaret Davidson, and Natalie Niblack will talk about their work in the exhibit “Otherwise” at 4pm at Edison’s Smith & Vallee Gallery, 5742 Gilkey Ave. The…

WA 129 Poetry Reading


Washington State Poet Laureate Tod Marshall, acclaimed author Tom Robbins, and others will share their works from WA 129 at a free poetry reading at 6pm in La Conner at Maple Hall, 104…

Giving from the Heart


Attend a music, art and community-focused benefit for the family of Chris Terrell—the heart of the Heart of Anacortes—at a “Giving from the Heart” event from 7-10pm at the city’s Depot…

A Light in the Darkness


Listen to lovely choral music that reflects varied themes of inspiration when Western Washington University’s Concert Choir performs at “A Light in the Darkness: Songs of Hope & Comfort” at…

Welcome Home Celebration


Cake, stories and more will be part of a Welcome Home Celebration for Village Books cofounder Chuck Robinson at 7pm in the Readings Gallery at the Fairhaven bookstore at 1200 11th St.…

Ruach Consort


Come enjoy an evening of Bach, Corelli, Monteverdi, Locke, Jenkins, and a haunting ancient Icelandic hymn when Ruach Consort performs at 7pm at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 2117 Walnut St.…

Contra Dance


Vermont-based band Pete’s Posse will provide live tunes and George Marshall from Massachusetts will do the calling at the Bellingham Country Dance Society’s Contra Dance taking place from…

Michael Kaeshammer


Pianist, vocalist, composer, arranger and producer Michael Kaeshammer brings his celebrated New Orleans-styled songs to Bellingham for a 7:30pm performance at the Mount Baker Theatre, 104 N.…

Legends of the Blues V


Ben Hunter and Joe Seamons will open up for headliner Curtis Salgado at the Arlington Arts Council’s “Legends of the Blues V” concert at 7:30pm at the city’s Byrnes Performing Arts Center,…

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