Reporting from the heart of Cascadia

Music

Vancouver Folk Music Festival

Run for the border

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

I am in the habit of reading the news every day, usually within minutes of waking up. I have done so for a good portion of my life, and it used to make me feel informed and more prepared to take on the day.

These days, not so much.

Now when I launch my New York Times app, I do it gingerly and with trepidation. Sometimes I fall back on my Catholic upbringing and make the sign of the cross before starting to scan the headlines. Even though I’m now a devoted heathen, I figure it…

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News

Listening and Learning

County seeks public advice on criminal justice

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Voters spoke. But what did voters mean?

In 2017, county voters rejected—by a wide margin, and for a second time—a public safety sales tax to construct a new jail. Staggering from that defeat and burdened with unanswered questions, Whatcom County Council assembled a committee and task force to gather opinion and ideas for public safety and criminal justice improvements.

If not this, what?

Their approach has several facets. One of them is just simply to listen.

Throughout the…

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Visual

Summer Sights

Treasures in Lynden

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

What did the Hagia Sophia of Constantinople look like in the year 537? 

You’ll have to make your way to Lynden and Jansen Art Center’s “Summer Juried Exhibit” to find out.

Eric Chauvin devoted two years to portraying a remarkable likeness of the Byzantine church as it must have looked when newly built by the Roman Emperor Justinian. His painting is uncannily detailed, down to portraits of priests, candles, holy icons and beams of light gleaming through clerestory…

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Words

Identity Crisis

A look at Lawn Boy

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

When Bainbridge Island author Jonathan Evison visited Whatcom County in 2017 as part of the Whatcom READS program, we met a gregarious, intelligent, self-destructive and endearing writer who loves to talk about books and drink beer—a lot of beer. 

He presents himself as a bit of a sad sack, an Everyman, but there’s a certain twinkle in his eye and twitch to his lip that indicates his brain is going a mile a minute and he’s got a lot to say, much like the lead character in his…

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Food

All That Razz

A very berry July

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

After dealing with multiple harvests of ripe raspberries last weekend, I’ve determined it’s a berry good time to be alive.

By Sunday afternoon, I’d added the perennial fruit to a bowl of Puffins, tossed a handful in a couple of different salads, eaten plenty off the vine, placed some atop vanilla ice cream, muddled a cup to add to a pitcher of white wine sangria, and pondered what in the hell else I could do with our unprecedented bounty.

Working with ingredients we already had on…

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Film

Hearts Beat Loud

Life writ small

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Brett Haley’s new movie, Hearts Beat Loud, isn’t quite in the same league as his best film, I’ll See You in My Dreams, but I see what he’s up to, and I’m liking it. At a time when popular American movies are heading in the direction of the huge and the simple, Haley is developing an aesthetic that’s all about the small and the complex. He makes movies about people, emotions, family, life, death—all things that will make his films completely comprehensible 200 years from now.…

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On Stage

Bellingham Pride

A date with diversity

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Tree Sequoia was at New York City’s Stonewall Inn in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969.

He didn’t know it, but many of the gay men, lesbians dressed in men’s clothes and drag queens in attendance at the dingy West Village bar that night would be part of history by evening’s end, when a police raid at the venue turned into a five-day riot by citizens tired of being discriminated against simply because of who they loved or what they wore.

Almost 50 years later, Stonewall is seen…

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Film

Zama

A man of constant sorrow

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

How do you make a movie about stagnation? A movie that doesn’t just tell you a story about someone wasting away, but that seems to embody a state of physical and moral decay for nearly two hours?

It may not sound like a glowing recommendation, but Lucrecia Martel has made such a movie with Zama, her feverishly brilliant adaptation of Antonio di Benedetto’s 1956 novel of the same title. This is one of the most atmospheric and transporting films I’ve seen all year, and also one of…

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Element Music Festival
Outdoors

Green Thumbs

Of tilling and touring

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

As any avid gardener knows, it takes a metric ton of labor and planning to get a plot of land camera-ready. Occasionally, it’s nice to step away from summer’s endless weeding, watering, pruning, culling and harvesting in order to get a closer look at other people’s gardens. Following are a few suggestions on ways to get the most out of your visits.

At Chuckanut Transition’s seventh annual Sustainable Samish Garden Tour happening from 11am-3pm Sun., July 15, a focus on the growing of…

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Element Music Festival
Best of Skagit
Best Tulip Farm

RoozenGaarde

It’s tulip time, and the fields are alive with the light and color of spring. The word’s out, and this spectacular time in the Skagit Valley is no longer a secret.

But Skagit still holds a lot of secrets—mist-shrouded valleys, swollen and mighty rivers, and frosty high country thick with dark pines and devil’s club. And there are the hidey holes—the hamlets sprinkled along old forgotten highways, the winding sloughs and channels of the fertile delta, and the coast beyond—dotted with islands pungent from salt and rain. There are the bars and diners and coffeehouses, the playgrounds and trails. And there are the people who fill them, hearty and happy. And though our readers revealed some of these secrets, Skagit remains a treasure undiscovered.

Entries by Tim Johnson, Amy Kepferle, Carey Ross, Stephanie Young, and Trail Rat
Photos by Jessamyn Tuttle and Andy Porter

See all the winners »
The Gristle
Pressure in the Bottle

PRESSURE IN THE BOTTLE: In the brief years since the putative beginning of economic recovery, median rents have risen in Whatcom County by more than 22 percent—half of that within the past 48 months. Since 2009, rents for a one-bedroom home in Bellingham have risen as much as 40 percent.…

Alan Rhodes
Mr. Cranky’s Files

People ask me, “Where do you get your ideas for your columns, Mr. Cranky?” Actually, nobody has ever asked me that, but here’s the answer anyway. When I hear something interesting that might make a good column, I jot down a few notes on whatever piece of paper is handy and pitch it…

Village Books
Letters
Voters aren’t enemies

We Democrats are called enemies by Representative Luanne Van Werven who is running for re-election. She considers us socialists always spending money, wanting freebies, lazy, etc.
We are not…

We need better representation

Over and over, Doug Ericksen, the Republican state senator for the 42nd District, has disregarded and disrespected those of us who care about children and families. He does not represent us…

Old king coal

Some weeks ago, it was reported that Braidy Industries is to build and operate an aluminum smelter in Eastern Kentucky. The state chipped in $15 million in taxpayer-funded  incentives to…

Trove Web
Today's Events
Boating Center Open

12:00pm

The Community Boating Center will be open through the summer from 12pm until sunset on weekdays and 10am until sunset on Saturdays and Sundays at their headquarters at 555 Harris Ave. Rentals…

Skagit Tours

10:00am

As part of the annual “Skagit Tours,” Seattle City Light, the North Cascades Institute, and the National Park Service offer Diablo Lake boat tours, Gorge powerhouse tours, and Ladder Creek…

Skagit Tours

10:00am

As part of the annual “Skagit Tours,” Seattle City Light, the North Cascades Institute, and the National Park Service offer Diablo Lake boat tours, Gorge powerhouse tours, and Ladder Creek…

Bard on the Beach

12:30pm

Macbeth, As You Like It, Timon of Athens, and Lysistrata show in repertory through Sept. 22 at Vancouver, BC’s “Bard on the Beach” Shakespeare Festival at Vanier Park. Tickets start at $24…

Open Air Summer Rep

7:30pm

As part of an Open Air Summer Rep series, iDiOM Theater will present performances of Anne Washburn’s 2012 masterpiece, Mr. Burns, A Post-Electric Play at 7:30pm Thursday, Friday, and Sunday…

Skagit Tours

10:00am

As part of the annual “Skagit Tours,” Seattle City Light, the North Cascades Institute, and the National Park Service offer Diablo Lake boat tours, Gorge powerhouse tours, and Ladder Creek…

Shades of the Northwest Quilt Show

10:00am

Woolley Fiber Quilters presents its ninth annual “Shades of the Northwest” Quilt Show from 10am-5pm Friday and Saturday, and 10am-4pm Sunday at Sedro-Woolley’s Cascade Middle School, 905…

Shrek the Musical

7:00pm

Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth students present showings of Shrek the Musical at 7pm Friday, 2pm and 7pm Saturday, and 2pm Sunday at BAAY Theatre, 1059 N. State St. The junior adaptation…

Skagit Valley Highland Games

9:00am

At the 24th annual “Scottish three-ring circus” that is the Skagit Valley Highland Games, activities will abound from 9am-6pm Saturday, and 9am-4pm Sunday at Mount Vernon’s Edgewater Park,…

Skagit Tours

10:00am

As part of the annual “Skagit Tours,” Seattle City Light, the North Cascades Institute, and the National Park Service offer Diablo Lake boat tours, Gorge powerhouse tours, and Ladder Creek…

State Street History Tour

1:30pm

Join the Good Time Girls for “State Street History: Guided Walking Tour of Old Sehome” starting at 1:45pm Saturday and Sunday at the goat statue at the Depot Market Square, 1000 Railroad…

Sin & Gin Tours

7:00pm

Through September, seasoned guides will regale audiences with tales of fascinating characters at the margins of history at Good Time Girls’ “Sin & Gin” tours at 7pm Fridays in downtown…

Sedro-Woolley Breakfast

8:00am

Eggs to order, omelets, hash browns, biscuits and gravy, pancakes, French toast and more can be had at a monthly breakfast happening from 8-11am in Sedro-Woolley at American Legion Post #43,…

Rabbit Ride

8:00am

Join members of the Mount Baker Bicycle Club for a “Rabbit Ride” starting at 8am every Sunday at Fairhaven Bicycle, 1108 11th St. The 32-mile route takes riders down Chuckanut and back via…

Skagit Casino Resort Car Show

9:00am

More than 300 vehicles will be on display in a wide array of classes at an inaugural Car Show taking place from 9am-3pm at the Skagit Casino Resort, 4984 Darrk Lane. This is a family-friendly…

Skagit Tours

10:00am

As part of the annual “Skagit Tours,” Seattle City Light, the North Cascades Institute, and the National Park Service offer Diablo Lake boat tours, Gorge powerhouse tours, and Ladder Creek…

Edison Farmers Market

10:00am

Purchase fresh produce, art and more at the Edison Farmers Market from 10am-3pm at the Edison Granary, 14136 Gilmore Ave. The event continues Sundays through September.

Langar in Lynden

11:00am

All are welcome at a Langar event from 11am-2pm in Lynden at Guru Nanak Gursikh Gurdwara, 176 E. Pole Rd. Langar is the sacred community free kitchen of the Sikh people and every temple…

Ferry Boat Contra Dance

12:30pm

Join the Bellingham Country Dance Society for a Ferry Boat Contra Dance leaving from the Anacortes Ferry Terminal (come early for a possible 12:30pm or 2pm departure). Round-trip foot passage…

Skagit City School Picnic

1:00pm

A catered meal by Kelley’s BBQ, live music, activities for kids and more will be part of the annual Skagit City School Picnic taking place from 1-4pm at the historic school’s locale on Fir…

MBT Community Pre-Sale Party

2:00pm

Find out more about the Mount Baker Theatre’s 2018-19 seasonal offerings at a Community Pre-Sale Party taking place from 2-5pm at the historic venue’s digs at 104 N. Commercial St. Activities…

Fiddlin' Fox Summer Concerts

2:00pm

Live music and dance instruction will be part of the annual “Fiddlin’ Fox” summer music series with the sounds of Swamp Soul from 2-5pm at the Fairhaven Village Green, 1207 10th St. The free,…

Trivia Time

3:30pm

Bring your thinking cap when host Jeff Zwiers presents brain-busters about history, sports, science, pop culture, music and more at a weekly Trivia! event starting at 3:30pm Sundays through…

Trivia Time

3:30pm

Bring your thinking cap when host Jeff Zwiers presents brain-busters about history, sports, science, pop culture, music and more at a weekly Trivia! event starting at 3:30pm Sundays through…

Vaudevillingham

7:00pm

Attend the Bellingham Circus Guild’s monthly uncensored variety show, “Vaudevillingham,” at 7pm and 9pm performances at the Cirque Lab, 1401 6th St., suite #102. Expect to see everything from…

Festival of Music Concert

7:30pm

Violinist Simone Porter will be performing Prokofiev’s “Violin Concerto #1” as the featured performer at a Bellingham Festival of Music concert starting at 7:30pm at Western Washington…

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