Salmon Says

Follow the fish

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

There’s no denying that denizens of Whatcom County are interested in what happens to the salmon who spawn in local waters every fall. 

Whether they’re attending Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association-led outdoor work parties to help maintain or improve their habitat, creating art to donate to local auctions to do the same, or—in the case of two events taking place Sat., Sept. 19—partaking in feats of athleticism with fish-focused themes, it’s clear our community is behind the silver swimmers.

Since 2003, the Chums of Terrell Creek have been promoting salmon recovery in the Terrell Creek watershed. The nonprofit was formed in response to community concerns about safe shellfish harvesting and clean recreational water, and has since expanded its efforts to include water quality in both Terrell Creek and Birch Bay.

The “Chums” have made a clear difference. Among their accomplishments: Six fish barriers have been replaced, 15 stream miles have been opened to fish, as many as 100,000 eggs are incubated annually, and the Lake Terrell Dam has been been made passable to salmon. There have also been numerous volunteer work parties, more than 22,000 native plants have been established, and approximately 48,000 feet of riparian area has been improved and protected.

At the third annual “Run with the Chums” taking place Sept. 19 at Ferndale’s BP Highlands, environmental education will be at the forefront of the festivities. After running or walking the 5K route, attendees can stick around to learn where the water in their neighborhoods goes, and how it affects the humans and animals who depend on it. Exhibits, information tables, guest speakers and more will be part of the free Whatcom Water Weeks event, and all are invited.

The same goes for Recreation Northwest’s “Vital Choice Bellingham Traverse,” the 13th annual relay race that celebrates the journey of wild salmon via running, biking and paddling through Bellingham’s parks, trails and waterways.

Starting at noon Sat., Sept. 19 at Boundary Bay Brewery, participants—including Chinook (solo), Coho (tandem) and Chum (relay teams)—will set off on their adventures, including a 5.5.-mile Greenways run, a six-mile mountain biking course, an 18-mile road bike ride, a 3.4-mile trail run, and a 3.6-mile paddle. Once you and your teammates have reunited, it’s a short team trek from Cornwall Beach to the finish line, where an ice-cold beer awaits.

Whether you’re in the race or are cheering on friends and family from the sidelines, keep in mind that stewardship of our land is at the heart of the event.

“Humans race—salmon journey,” reads an explanation of the event in the Traverse Guidebook. “Salmon emerge from the gravel, enter our streams and navigate challenging natural and urban terrain to open water. You will join them in spirit as you race across land and through water.

“Salmon are the yardstick of our community health. If our salmon are healthy and thriving, the economy and community are more likely to be healthy and thriving. The Bellingham Traverse is designed to raise awareness for and celebrate the lifecycle of wild salmon while fostering relationships among community members.”

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Home for the Holidays

5:00pm|Ferndale Events Center

The 39 Steps

7:00pm|Sehome High School Little Theatre

Little Women

7:00pm|Ferndale High School

Peter and the Star Catcher

7:00pm|Squalicum High School

Romeo, You Idiot!

7:30pm|Heiner Theater


7:30pm|Mount Baker High School

Craft Bazaar

9:00am|American Legion Post #43

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Meridian Street

Hot Cider & Cool Art

10:00am|Morgan Block Studios

Used Book Sale

10:00am|Everson Library

Red Barn Handpicked Holiday Market

12:00pm|Northwest Washington Fairgrounds

Holiday Gifts from the Kitchen

3:00pm|Lynden Library, Ferndale Library

It's Where the Sidewalk Ends

6:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

New Music, New Dance

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center Concert Hall

The Big Short One-Act Festival

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Bellingham Repertory Dance's Emerge

7:30pm|Firehouse Performing Arts Center

Backyard Brawl

8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

VFW Breakfast

8:00am|VFW Hall

Pancake Breakfast

8:00am|Ferndale Senior Center

Pancake Feed

8:00am|VFW Post 1585

Holiday Bazaar

9:00am|Hillcrest Chapel

Christmas in the Woods

9:00am|Garden Spot Nursery

NSEA Work Party

9:00am|Acme Elementary School

Turkey Trot

9:00am|Squalicum Creek Park

Climate Reality

10:00am|Bellingham Public Library

South Fork Winterfest

10:00am|Van Zandt Community Hall

Fall Gardening

10:00am|Lynden Library

Cheese Fest

10:00am|Everybody's Store

Bellingham Farmers Market

10:00am|Depot Market Square

Rexville Grange Holiday Art Show

10:00am|Rexville Grange

Holiday Farmers Market

10:00am|Port of Anacortes Transit Shed Event Center

Lynden Book Club

10:30am|Everson Library

Salmon Sighting

12:00pm|Haynie Creek

Conquering Writer's Block

2:00pm|South Whatcom Library

Fishboy Holiday Show

2:00pm|FishBoy Gallery

NaNoWriMo and Indie Publishing

3:00pm|Everson Library

Skagit Wine & Beer Festival


Homeless Summit and Cold Weather Giveaway

3:00pm|Maritime Heritage Park

i.e. artists talk

3:30pm|i.e. gallery

Small Works Opening

4:00pm|Matzke Fine Art Gallery and Sculpture Park

Smith & Vallee Artist Talk

4:00pm| Smith & Vallee Gallery

WA 129 Poetry Reading

6:00pm|Maple Hall

Giving from the Heart

7:00pm|Depot Art Center

A Light in the Darkness

7:00pm|Church of the Assumption

Welcome Home Celebration

7:00pm|Village Books

Ruach Consort

7:00pm|St. Paul's Episcopal Church

Contra Dance

7:00pm|Eagles Hall

Michael Kaeshammer

7:30pm|Mount Baker Theatre

Legends of the Blues V

7:30pm|Byrnes Performing Arts Center

Peter and the Star Catcher

7:00pm|Squalicum High School


7:30pm|Mount Baker High School

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Meridian Street

Bellingham Repertory Dance's Emerge

7:30pm|Firehouse Performing Arts Center

Rexville Grange Holiday Art Show

10:00am|Rexville Grange

Cheese Fest

10:00am|Everybody's Store

Holiday Farmers Market

10:00am|Port of Anacortes Transit Shed Event Center

Rabbit Ride

8:00am|Fairhaven Bicycle

Community Breakfast

8:00am|American Legion Post #43

Rabbit Ride

8:30am|Fairhaven Bicycle

Getting in on the act


Sound of Music Singalong

1:00pm|Lincoln Theatre

A Musical Thanksgiving

2:00pm|McIntyre Hall

Harmony from Discord with Whatcom Symphony Orchestra

3:00pm|Mount Baker Theatre

The 25th Hour

4:00pm|Village Books

Southside Community Meal

5:00pm|Our Saviour's Lutheran Church

Way North Comedy Showcase

7:00pm|Farmstrong Brewing Co.

Rutie Dornfeld, John Miller

7:00pm|YWCA Ballroom

Trove Bellingham Farmer’s Market
Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am|Meridian Street

Wander + Camber Beer Dinner

6:30pm|Camber Cafe

Rocks & Gems

7:00pm|Bloedel Donovan Community Building


9:30pm|Green Frog

see our complete calendar »

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