Yards and Art
Welcome to the neighborhood
WHAT: York Yard Crawl
WHEN: 12pm-6pm Sat., July 6
WHERE: Throughout the York neighborhood; pick up maps at Nelson’s Market, 514 Potter St.
COST: Entry is free
WHAT: Sunnyland Stomp
WHEN: 3pm-8pm Sat., July 13
WHERE: Throughout the Sunnyland neighborhood
Wednesday, July 3, 2019
In the nearly 20 years I’ve lived in Bellingham’s historic York neighborhood, I’ve hosted a plethora of parties ranging from intimate to incendiary.
What I hadn’t done until last summer, however, was prop open the gate to the backyard and share the green space with a bunch of strangers.
Thanks to York Yard Crawl founder June Hathaway, I was spurred to invite a couple of neighbors to join me at the inaugural event. We spent a sunny July afternoon showing and selling both original and prefabricated art, craft supplies, costumes, clothes, household goods ranging from a pagan duvet cover to fine china, furniture, and all of the weird odds and ends that emerge when the decision is made to declutter a domicile.
It turned out to be a helluva lot of fun. I conversed with neighbors I’d never met, discussed the growing of dahlias and the tending of chickens with fellow enthusiasts, gave short tours of the backyard beds, laughed uproariously and made a few bucks along the way.
Although I had a blast, when Hathaway sent out a reminder about singing up for this year’s crawl, I couldn’t make up my mind about committing to hosting. No co-conspirators had emerged this year, and I was itching to set out on my own exploration of art, music, yard sales and assorted activities.
“Roaming is pretty great too,” Hathaway said when I informed her I was on the fence. “Highlights of this year’s crawl include a kids’ bike party and a cardboard play lab, in addition to art quilts by textile artist Jess Flegel, a tour of Crosby Glass Studios, and music from East Coast Dave and the Midwest Swingers.”
Hathaway was originally inspired to organize the free-ranging event after attending the Sunnyland Stomp and deciding the York neighborhood needed its own creative catalyst. She made sure not to schedule the event on the same day, so it’s likely she’ll be at the Stomp the following weekend, when nearly 40 hosts will open their studios and yards to share their art, music and other assorted talents. For a sneak peek, a downloadable map will soon be available on the Stomp website, and at a variety of businesses in the ‘hood that is located west of Interstate 5 and north of Whatcom Creek and is comprised of approximately 2,200 residents.
In addition to the legendary Chicken Race that kicks off the fun at noon at Memorial Park, highlights from the 11th annual Sunnyland Stomp will include tours of the Homes Now! tiny houses, a Pride fundraiser at Homeskillet, live screen printing at Redboots Design, an Insect Safari at Twin Sisters Brewing, a pop-up mending shop, hands-on activities such as sculpting clay, and accompanying events at nearby businesses—many of which are sponsors of the shindig.
“We were bowled over by the support of our sponsors this year,” co-organizer Kendall Dodd says. “A record-breaking 35 businesses are helping to make the Stomp possible. It’s wonderful to watch the neighborhood invest in this unique, creative event. We can’t wait to throw open the doors of our neighborhood to celebrate art, community and fun times with everyone who’s coming out to the Stomp this year!”
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