Visual

Crawl and Stomp

A neighborly approach to art

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

What are you doing Saturday afternoon?

If you’re not busy, I’d like to take this opportunity to invite you to my backyard, which for one day only will be transformed into an art gallery, multi-neighbor yard sale and chicken-viewing station.

I won’t be alone. Thanks to organizer and resident June Hathaway, the inaugural York Yard Crawl taking place from 12-6pm Sat., July 7 will see as many as 30 of our neighbors also opening up their private spaces to the public.

Among the artistic offerings that can be perused by those dropping by our historic and diverse hood near downtown Bellingham are one-of-a-kind modern quilts stitched by Jess Flegel, stained glass art at Crosby Glass Studio, photography by Cate Reed and Andrew Molitor, and abstract paintings by Melissa Helzer (who’ll also be painting faces at her post near our plum tree).

But viewing and purchasing art isn’t the only reason to attend. Tarot and palm readings, yard games, music by R House Zydeco and East Coast Dave the Midwest Swingers, tours of the York Farm, scads of yard sales, lemonade stands and much more are planned for the Saturday soiree.

“I’m hoping that people who are hosting in their yards will have fun showing off their art, mingling with friends old and new, and for the yard-salers, maybe unloading those Birkenstocks that never quite fit right,” Hathaway says. “I hope folks attending the crawl will gain a new appreciation for the amazing creative community we have right here, drink some lemonade, get a tarot reading, and maybe score some sweet, hardly worn Birkenstocks.”

Hathaway was inspired by the nearby Sunnyland Stomp, which will be celebrating its 10th anniversary the following weekend—Sat., July 14—with a noontime chicken race and more than 40 hosts who will open their doors and fences to showcase everything from paintings to Bocce ball lessons to live-action screen printing, puppet shows, a Bastille Day-themed celebration and far beyond.

“I’m thrilled to see the community come together for this unique, creative event,” co-organizer and participant Erin Boyd says. “It’s such a good reflection of the best of Bellingham. We’re looking forward to sharing art, community and fun times with all of the visitors to our neighborhood.”

Boyd says another highlight of this year’s Stomp is the increased support and participation of neighborhood businesses. Kulshan Brewing is creating a beer just for the event, and HomeSkillet will host a Pride celebration. A new brewery, Twin Sisters, will also be hosting a pig roast.

At both events, bike and pedestrian travel is encouraged, as is a neighborly approach to art.

I think every neighborhood should have an event like this,” Hathaway says. “But on different weekends, so I can go to them all.”

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