Reporting from the heart of Cascadia


Come In From The Cold

Hot nights at the Wild Buffalo

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Everyone has a friend like me. I wear long sleeves during the summer, long underwear during the winter and am never without auxiliary layers of clothing, just in case. In other words, I am always cold.

I long to be one of those hardy folks who don technical layers and then tromp into the mountains seeking cold temps and attendant snowpack. I wonder what it’s like to be eager for winter instead of dreading it, to enjoy it instead of suffering through it like I’m being personally…

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Forest School

An environmental education

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Do you have childhood memories of daydreaming about gliding from tree to tree in a forest? Do you remember imagining what it might be like to live not just on Earth but in the earth? Can you recall getting lost in tiny worlds where beds of moss became sprawling forests and fir cones became hiding places?

Forest School, a new collaborative education program between Bellingham Public Schools and North Cascades Institute (NCI), strives to not only get kids outside, but also to…

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Hops Stops

Skagit Beer Week, Take Two

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Farmstrong Brewing Company has only been a part of the regional beer scene for the past three years, but they’ve used their time wisely by making it a goal to integrate the land they love into their brewing process. As of March 1, all of their sipping selections—from Valley Gold to La Raza Ambar and beyond—are now made from locally sourced grain.

“We’ve spent the last year working hand-in-hand with local farmers and maltsters to transfer the entirety of our recipes to 100 percent…

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Full Deck

Books that suit you

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

It can be challenging to find your next great read, but the Whatcom County Library System (WCLS) has stacked the deck in your favor. To celebrate our 75th anniversary and our love of sharing stories, we’ve created a full deck of reading recommendations, one for each week of 2019. 

These recommendations are selected from many genres, both adult and youth, and categorized by suit: clubs for belonging, diamonds for strength, hearts for love, and spades for growth. Staff made…

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On Stage

Legally Blonde

Powerful in pink

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

When I was in first grade, one of my teachers placed me with a group of remedial readers despite the fact that I was already powering through Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House on the Prairie books and could make my way through most encyclopedia entries—something my mother pointed out when she made a complaint at the elementary school.

The teacher who’d made the mistake hadn’t tested my abilities in advance. I was short for my age, so apparently she’d taken it for granted my brain…

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Heavy Metal

From sparks to sculpture

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

A passion for extended guitar solos and amplified distortion won’t be a requirement for those attending a couple of metal-focused exhibits on display in Bellingham through the month. Instead, all that’s needed is the capacity to appreciate what happens when heat and sparks help welders transform the malleable medium into works of art.

Custom-made for heavy metal fans, an Open House and Auction Kickoff that are part of “Welding Fab Week” takes place at Bellingham Technical College…

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March Silver Reef
Best of Bellingham
Best Neighborhood


What makes a great neighborhood? Well, one that is walkable, with tree-lined streets and ample parks, nearby services and entertainment. One that allows people to work from or near their homes. Many artists have moved to Sunnyland for exactly that reason, so they can run a studio out of their home—and that has produced a flourishing local arts community. Sunnyland is a nucleus for many of the favorite haunts and hangouts cited in this year’s reader survey.

That dynamism has a downside, too, and Sunnyland is experiencing some growing pains from its tangy mix of industrial and commercial uses in proximity to family homes. Friends, an outdoor beer garden is a heartbreaking thing to quarrel about! I predict they’ll soon solve those problems, and continue to claim their crown as Bellingham’s favorite neighborhood.

See all the winners »
The Gristle
Halfway Houses

HALFWAY HOUSES: Last week marked the halfway point of the Legislature’s 105-day regular session in Olympia, and the cutoff for new bills to be passed out of their original chambers. The deadline left just 681 bills out of some 2,150 bills introduced still under consideration for this…

Amy Goodman
Boeing’s Profit Motive

The crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302, just after takeoff, killed all 157 people on board. The tragedy provoked global outrage as news circulated that the newly designed aircraft, the Boeing 737 Max 8, has software flaws that make the plane inherently dangerous. Country after country…

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Long dark cloud

Shaken by tragedy in New Zealand, my family’s home, the gunman’s attack seems indicative of a spreading inclination to avoid and despise education. Calling Donald Trump “a symbol of…


When Donald Trump made “bad trade agreements” the cornerstone of his rust belt campaign, he had his finger on the pulse of workers whose neighborhoods were devastated by the…

Big Ag

Every bit as much on the political left (I’m a member) as on its right, careful analysis and hard data seem to count for nothing these days. As a result, the mindless dogma of the…

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Today's Events
Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest


Single-poem submissions for the 14th annual Sue C. Boynton Poetry Contest will be accepted through March 31. Residents from throughout Whatcom County can submit their works; 25 winners will…

La Conner Daffodil Festival


The fifth annual La Conner Daffodil Festival takes place March 1-31 at more than 450 acres in and around La Conner and the Skagit Valley. Check online, or drop by the La Conner Visitor…

Essence of Bellingham Photo Competition


Residents of Whatcom County can submit images to the City of Bellingham’s annual “Essence of Bellingham” photo competition starting today and continuing through May 1. See submission…

Imagine Convergence on Orcas Island


Changemakers, intellectuals, innovators and cultural creatives are invited to explore cross-disciplinary solutions to global complexities at the “Imagine Convergence” happening from Thursday…

Peter Pan, A Musical Adventure


Meridian Middle School Drama Club students will bring Peter Pan: A Musical Adventure to life at performances at 7pm Thursday and Friday, and 2pm and 7pm Saturday at the auditorium at Meridian…

Dyo Festival Plays


As part of iDiOM Theater’s monthlong Dyo Festival—a five-week celebration of plays and stories for two performers—attend showings of Lojo Simon’s One Foot, and Harold Pinter’s The Lover

Bellingham Puppetry and Mask Festival


As part of World Puppetry Day, attend Bellingham Puppetry and Mask Festival events at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday at the Alternative Library, 519 E. Maple St. The festival includes a…

SICBA Home & Garden Show


Attend the 39th annual SICBA Home & Garden Show from 11am-6pm Friday, 10am-7pm Saturday, and 10am-3pm Sunday at Mount Vernon’s Skagit County Fairgrounds, 479 W. Taylor St. Seminar presenters,…

Tarnation, Ryan Stiles


The improvised Western known as “Tarnation” returns to the stage at 7:30pm Friday and Saturday at the Upfront Theatre, 1208 Bay St. Tickets are $10-$12. At 9:30pm, attend “A Night of Improv…

The Pageturners


Watch six friends in a book group bare their souls and discover their own stories at showings of The Pageturners at 7:30pm Friday and Saturday, and 2pm Sunday at Anacortes Community Theatre’s…

Pancake Breakfast


Attend a monthly Pancake Breakfast from 8-10am at Ferndale’s American Legion Post #154, 5537 Second Ave. Admission is $3 for kids 12 and under, and $6 for adults.

Honeywagon Runs


Join the Greater Bellingham Running Club for its annual “Honeywagon Runs” starting at 8am (half-marathon walkers), 9am (half-marathon runners), 9:15am (kid’s fun run), and 10am (four-mile…

Nordic Roots Seminar


Skagit Valley Genealogical Society will host a Nordic Roots seminar from 9am-3:30pm in Mount Vernon at the United Methodist Church, 1607 E. Division St. Genealogist Evelyn Roehl will discuss…

NSEA Work Party


Join Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association for a Community Work Party from 9am-12pm along Squalicum Creek. Volunteers will be planting native trees to restore salmon habitat. Park at at…

Native Plant Sale


Whether you are a native plant enthusiast, backyard gardener, farmer, landscape professional, conservationist or are just looking for a fun way to welcome spring, attend Whatcom Conservation…

Make It and Take it


Kim Swanson will lead a “Make It and Take it: Hypertufa” workshop at 9am at Garden Spot Nursery, 900 Alabama St. These lightweight concrete planters have been used in Old-English gardens for…

WNPS Field Trip


Join the local chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society for a field trip to Kukutali Reserve and Breazeale Interpretive Center from 9am-3pm day leaving from the Fairhaven Parkway Park &…

Spring Studio Seconds Sale


Attend an annual Spring Studio Seconds Sale from 10am-8pm at Blue Water Pottery, 2521 Vallette St. (behind the house, with alley access). The studio will be selling pottery seconds by Jeremy…

Quilt Museum Annex Open House


Celebrate a recent bequest by Norada Shanafelt at an Open House taking place from 10am-5pm in La Conner at Northwest Quilt & Fiber Arts Museum’s new Education & Conservation Annex, 112 Morris…

Youth Ag Day


Games, tours, hands-on activities, prizes and more will be part of “Youth Ag Day” from 10am-12pm at Burlington’s Skagit Farmers Supply, 12939 Avon Allen Rd. The free event is perfect for 4H…

Sumas Writers Group


Aspiring writers can join the Sumas Writers Group to improve writing techniques, get feedback and gain information on how to get work published from 10-11am at the Sumas Library, 451 2nd St.…

Skagit Beer Week


A Skagit Farm to Pint Beer Run on Sat., March 23 will kick off the second annual Skagit Beer Week. Beer dinners, tours, tap takeovers, educational events and more will take place through…

Dahlias Made Easy


John and Kathy Willson, the former owners of Swede Hill Dahlia Sunflower Farm, will focus on “Starting, Planting and Staking Dahlias Made Easy” at an 11am workshop in Mount Vernon at…

Free My Heart


Author Gwen Overland will sign copies of her latest romance, Free My Heart: A Salmon Run Novel, from 12-2pm in Lynden at Village Books, 430 Front St. The tome is the sequel to Love’s Harvest,…

Tax Help Available


The AARP Tax-Aide program will provide free tax preparation services from 12:30-4pm Saturdays at Bellingham’s First Congregational Church, 2401 Cornwall Ave. Through mid-April, the service…

Fidalgo and Mount Baker Youth Symphonies


The Fidalgo Youth Symphony teams up with the Mount Baker Youth Symphony for a spring concert, “Romantic Russians,” at 1pm at Mount Vernon’s McIntyre Hall, 2501 E. College Way. More than 120…

Forest Bathing


Attend a “Forest Bathing” event from 1-4pm at Rockport State Park, 51905 Hwy 20. This is a special opportunity to experience shinrin-yoku in the environs of an ancient forest; guide Michael…

A Family Immigration Story


“From Mexican to Mexican-American: A Family Immigration Story” will be the topic of a Humanities Washington’s Speakers Bureau program at 1pm at the Lynden Library (216 4th St.), and 4pm at…

Cheese Classes


A “Let’s Make Gouda!” class takes place from 1 3:30pm Saturday at the Chuckanut Center, 103 Chuckanut Drive North. From 5-6:30pm Wed., March 27, attend “Let’s Make Mozzarella and Burrata!”…

PechuKucha Night


Join your community for a fun, fast-paced PechuKucha Night in La Conner from 5-7pm at the Museum of Northwest Art, 121 S. First St. The theme will be “Creative Response to Challenge.” Entry…

Contra Dance with the Alphabeats


The Alphabeats will perform at the Bellingham Country Dance Society’s Contra Dance happening from 7-10pm at the Fairhaven Library, 1117 12th St. A workshop will kick o ff the fun. Suggested…

Manouche NW Concert Series


As part of the “Manouche NW” concert series, Ranger and the Re-Arrangers will perform swing standards, Gypsy melodies, the music of Django Reinhardt, original tunes and more at 7pm at the…

Giovanni & the Camino of St. Francis


Bestselling author and musician James Twyman reads from his new book of fiction, Giovanni & the Camino of St. Francis, at 7pm at Village Books, 1200 11th St. Known as the Peace Troubadour,…

Gabriel and Rebecca Manalac


Pianists Gabriel and Rebecca Manalac present an exciting program of four-hands piano music at 7:30pm at Lynden’s Jansen Art Center, 321 Front St. Works by Mozart, Faure, Ravel, and Copeland…

Skagit Symphony's Masterpiece Concert


A “Masterpiece Concert” will continue Skagit Symphony’s season at 7:30pm at McIntyre Hall, 2501 E. College Way. Guest conductor Michael Wheatley will lead the orchestra with Humperdinck’s…

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