On Stage

Sh'Bang!

A very bright idea

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Some people calmly accept the inevitable end of summer with a shrug and go on with their lives. Others, not so much.

Those who take part in the annual “Sh’Bang!” gathering at the Lookout Arts Quarry every September most definitely fall into the latter camp.

Not only do the organizers and attendees of the “Festival of Ideas” embrace the remaining days of summer, they do just about everything in their power to hang on to the waning days of the season of sun.

In fact, the event crams so many different activities into three days, it’s hard to know where to start when approaching the topic of what you should do with yourself at the picturesque locale—which is described by organizers as a “post-industrial land restoration project complete with wetlands and a pristine stadium-sized rainwater lake.”

For those who haven’t heard of Sh’Bang!, it’s probably helpful to delineate whether the gathering taking place approximately 10 minutes from Bellingham proper is a performing arts showcase, a music festival, an outdoor art space, a place for exploration of the recreational kind, a family-friendly gathering or a last chance to get some camping in before the nights grow chillier.

The answer, if you haven’t guessed, is all of the above.

“Influenced by the circus-minded artists who manage the quarry, Sh’Bang! is a festival of ideas that raises funds for quarry projects while providing a space for radical community inclusion through spontaneous artistic exploration,” organizer Clay “Mazing” Letson says.

The artistic exploration Letson speaks of is manifold, and creativity is at the center of pretty much every item on the bursting-at-the-seams menu.

Starting at 4pm Friday afternoon and continuing until late afternoon Sunday, the Lookout Arts Quarry will take on the music festival role by playing host to a slew of live bands from both near and far (Br’er Rabbit, Yogoman Burning Band, Bee Bones, Deakin Hicks , the Murtles, Hot Damn Scandal, etc.).

Circus artists will also get their due with a variety of performances, including shows by smokin’ hot talents of the Inflammable Circus, sideshow master Justin Credible, the Emergency Circus, and more.

In addition to the staged events, part of the fun of Sh’Bang! is figuring out what you want to do in between the viewing of shows.

For sure, you’ll want to schedule time to watch the Soapbox Derby, a downhill, offroad affair complete with a costume contest, careening gravity-powered vehicles designed for speed, and prizes for everything from “slowest time” to “fastest time” to “spectacular crash.”

Other items of note to be aware of when it comes time to plan your weekend: swimming, interactive theme camps, a kid’s zone, dancing, clay wrestling, parades, a zip line, carnival games, workshops, a flapjack feast, art trading posts, welding lessons, live painting and puppet shows.

No plan is also a good plan, meaning it’s probably a good idea to leave the rigors of the everyday world behind—including day planners—and simply see where the action takes you upon your arrival. If this weekend’s event is anything like previous Sh’Bangs, the best of summer may still be ahead of you.

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Events
Today
Ski to Sea Book Sale

10:00am|Bellingham Public Library

BC Morgan Horse Show

9:00am| Northwest Washington Fairgrounds

What-A-Sho!

7:00pm|Bellingham High School

Twelfth Night

7:30pm|Philip Tarro Theatre

Julius Caesar

7:30pm|Miller Hall

Wild Things

9:30am|Cornwall Park

Seconds Sale

10:00am|Good Earth Pottery

Seaweed Beach Ramble

10:00am|Living Earth Herbs

Book Trailers

12:30pm|Ferndale Library

Valley writers

1:00pm|South Whatcom Library

Sin & Gin Tours

4:00pm|Whatcom County Tourism

Food Not Bombs

4:00pm|Downtown Bellingham

Ski to Sea Block Party

5:00pm|Boundary Bay Brewery

School of Rock

7:00pm|BAAY Theatre

WWU Orchestra

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center Concert Hall

Genre Legends

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Village Books
Tomorrow
Ski to Sea Book Sale

10:00am|Bellingham Public Library

BC Morgan Horse Show

9:00am| Northwest Washington Fairgrounds

Julius Caesar

7:30pm|Miller Hall

Twelfth Night

7:30pm|Philip Tarro Theatre

Sin & Gin Tours

4:00pm|Whatcom County Tourism

School of Rock

7:00pm|BAAY Theatre

Genre Legends

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Pancake Breakfast

8:00am|American Legion Hall

Anacortes Farmers Market

9:00am|Depot Arts Center

Mount Vernon Farmers Market

9:00am|Riverfront Plaza

Bellingham Farmers Market

10:00am|Depot Market Square

Sumas Writers Group

10:00am|Sumas Library

Lummi Island Artists Studio Tour

10:00am|Lummi Island

Boating Center Open

10:00am|Community Boating Center

Low Tide Picnic

11:30am|Marine Park

Stones Throw Block Party

12:00pm|Stones Throw Brewery

Blossomtime Parade

12:00pm|Downtown Bellingham

Project Connection

1:00pm|East Whatcom Regional Resource Center

We Are WWU

6:00pm|Boundary Bay Brewery

Salsa Night

9:30pm|Cafe Rumba

Lester and Hyldahl Northwood Steak and Crab
Sunday
BC Morgan Horse Show

9:00am| Northwest Washington Fairgrounds

Twelfth Night

7:30pm|Philip Tarro Theatre

School of Rock

7:00pm|BAAY Theatre

Boating Center Open

10:00am|Community Boating Center

Back to the basics

7:00am

Ski to Sea Race

7:00am|Mt. Baker to Bellingham Bay

Rabbit Ride

8:00am|Fairhaven Bicycle

Images of Resilience Farewell

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Lightcatcher Building

Fairhaven Festival

12:00pm|Historic Fairhaven

Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

1:00pm|Lincoln Theatre

Audubon at the Museum

2:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

Art of Jazz

4:00pm|Majestic

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