Reporting from the heart of Cascadia

On Stage

Ghostbusters

The spirit of Christmas past

Monday, December 5, 2016

In Charles Dickens’ classic holiday story, A Christmas Carol, a grumpy guy named Ebeneezer Scrooge is scared into being a stalwart citizen after being visited by a slew of spirits who show him not only that his atrocious actions matter, but also that it’s never too late to change.

Although it’s not described as a “ghost story,” per se, that’s exactly what A Christmas Carol is. From the time Scrooge is visited by his long-dead business partner, Jacob Marley—who advises him that…

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Music

The Bellingham Folk Festival

Learn a little, dance a little

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

I’m a proud, born-and-bred Pacific Northwesterner, and as such, you won’t often hear me complaining about the dark, cold, wet, cold, windy, wet, dark weather we usually experience this time of year. When the sun disappears over the horizon at 3:45 in the afternoon, I don’t pay it much mind. When the rain pounds down, day after day to become week after week, I shrug it off. When the wind blows sideways, rattling the windows and freaking people out, I remain serene and can sometimes…

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Film

Miss Sloane

Such a nasty woman

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Further evidence of the Aaron Sorkinization of American screenwriting, Miss Sloane is a talky, tense political thriller, full of verbal sparring and fiery monologues, undone by a really dumb ending. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t smart for most of its running time. Constructed like a magic act by first-time screenwriter Jonathan Perera, with tricks up every sleeve that keep audiences guessing, this twisty peek inside the sausage factory of American politics features characters who…

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Film

Torrey Pines

A stop-motion labor of love

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

I’m not sure if Clyde Petersen knows this, but he is one of my personal heroes.

Clyde appeared in Bellingham’s music scene at about the same time I began writing about it, a little more than 15 years ago. His band, Your Heart Breaks, was one of the first that I watched grow from its beginnings into the form it takes today. His was a typical Bellingham existence for that time—he was a Fairhaven graduate, Boundary Bay employee, lived at the Gimli House, and hung out at the Showoff…

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Food

Ramen Express

A culinary journey through Japan

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Award-winning food writer and traveler Michael Booth had been training in Paris to be a chef, and the butter-and cream-laden diet was starting to impact his waistline.

He’d seen research about the health benefits of a traditional Japanese diet, so when given the opportunity to spend three months in Japan researching and writing about Japanese cuisine, he eagerly packed his bags and flew to Tokyo with wife and kids in tow.

Starting in Tokyo, the Booth family ate their way north to…

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Visual

Holiday Helper

Making Christmas creative

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

In the vein of “The 12 Days of Christmas,” I’d like to offer a day-by-day highlight of how to secure gifts that won’t involve a trip to the mall or the click of a mouse. Instead, the focus is on creative community members and the work they’re doing to ensure nobody has to endure a big-box holiday (partridges in pear trees are optional).

We’ll begin with Fri., Dec. 9 and the seasonal Commercial Street Night Market taking place from 6-10pm in and around the Commercial Street Parking…

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Outdoors

Welcoming the Eagles

Masters of their domain

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

“Eagles come in all shapes and sizes, but you will recognize them chiefly by their attitudes.”
—E. F. Schumacher

Maybe it’s the way they soar, but bald eagles are absolute masters of their domain. It could also be their regal stance when perched, like monarchs of the northern forests. Perhaps it is their fierce stare. Eagles capture the imagination.

As a symbol of the United States, they represent dominance. In real life, they’re part of an intricate web of…

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Words

Northwest Bookshelf

A gift guide for greenies

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Forest Under Story: Creative Inquiry in an Old-Growth Forest
Edited by Nathaniel Brodie, Charles Goodrich, and Frederick Swanson

In a mossy, tangled grove of old-growth conifers east of Eugene, Ore. in the 15,800-acre Lookout Creek watershed, sits a nondescript campus of buildings operated by Oregon State University: the H. J. Andrews Experimental Forest in the Willamette National Forest, on the verdant and soggy west slope of the Oregon Cascades.

Since 2003, many notable scribes of…

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News

Jail Mailer

County fined for improper election materials

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Following a year-long investigation, County Executive Jack Louws faces a sanction and fine from a state review board for his role as head of county administration for a political mailer in support of Proposition 2015-1, a sales tax initiative to construct a new jail facility. The state Public Disclosure Commission will consider a recommendation to fine the executive $1,000 for violations of state election laws, with half the amount suspended.

“The system of governance in Whatcom…

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Best of Bellingham
Best Neighborhood

Columbia

What makes a great neighborhood? In the years we’ve been polling readers for their favorite places, this category has moved steadily north—as has the emphasis on great parks, trails, schools, places to hang out, and homes that are stylish, established yet affordable have come into focus. The Elizabeth Park Summer Concert Series is just one example of a neighborhood laying out all of its finest for the enjoyment of others. Roll on, Columbia!

Best of Bellingham write-ups by Tim Johnson, Carey Ross, Amy Kepferle, Scott Pelton, and Trail Rat
Photos by Patrick Beggan (versaphotography.com)

See all the winners »
The Gristle
Jack’s Attack

JACK’S ATTACK: Acrimony continues to widen between the legislative and executive branches of Whatcom County, as last week County Executive Jack Louws announced he would veto his own budget submittal over additional appropriations requested by County Council. The veto requires an override…

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Letters
Palestine to 
Standing Rock

Water is crucial for life, dignity and sovereignty! The drama playing out in North Dakota echoes what I learned from…

End of the world?

For young people who think Trump’s election is bad news, I felt the same way in 1980.
Of course…

Ain’t over ’til it’s over

The election is not over, is not final until the Electoral College votes on Dec. 19.
For the first…

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Today's Events
Santa in Town

12:00pm

For the 34th year, the Fairhaven Lions will host Santa Claus through the holidays at Yeager’s Toyland, 3101 Northwest St. Visits are free. You can take pictures with your own camera at no…

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am

More than 100 local artists and craftspeople will show and sell their creative wares as part of Allied Arts’ 37th annual “Holiday Festival of the Arts” from 10am-7pm daily through Christmas…

Winter Book Sale

10:00am

Used books, DVDs, CDs and more can be found at a Friends of the Library Winter Book Sale from 10am-6pm Wednesday through Friday, and 10am-1pm Saturday at the Bellingham Public Library, 210…

Holiday Choral Celebration

10:30am

The Squalicum High School Storm Singers, directed by Jason Parker, will perform a “Holiday Choral Celebration” for the Bellingham Music Club at 10:30am at Trinity Lutheran Church, 119 Texas…

Deck the Old City Hall

12:00pm

The annual “Deck the Old City Hall”  continues from 12-5pm Wednesdays through Sundays through Dec. 31 at Whatcom Museum’s Old City Hall, 121 Prospect St. Visitors can view more than 20…

Books and Tea

2:00pm

An “Afternoon Books and Tea” event takes place from 2-3:30pm at the Lynden Library, 216 4th St. Cozy Christmas mysteries will be the theme of this month’s event, which features mysteries, tea…

Santa at Yeager's

4:00pm

For the 34th year, the Fairhaven Lions will host Santa Claus through the holidays at Yeager’s Toyland, 3101 Northwest St. Visits are free. You can take pictures with your own camera at no…

Christmas Lamb

5:30pm

Join Executive Chef Bruno Feldeisen for a “Christmas Lamb” cooking class from 5:30-7:30pm at Blaine’s Semiahmoo Resort, 9565 Semiahmoo Parkway.  He’ll emonstrate expert techniques you’ll be…

Group Run

6:00pm

All levels of experience are welcome at a weekly Group Run beginning at 6pm in Mount Vernon at the Skagit Running Company, 702 First St. The 3- to 6-mile run is great for beginners or for…

Group Run

6:00pm

All levels of experience are welcome at a weekly Group Run beginning at 6pm in Mount Vernon at the Skagit Running Company, 702 First St. The 3- to 6-mile run is great for beginners or for…

Eat Your Greens!

6:30pm

Karina Davidson demonstrates the versatility and taste of nutritionally packed greens at an “Eat Your Greens!” course from 6:30-9pm at the Community Food Co-op, 1220 N. Forest St. Entry is…

Tribute to Four Brothers

7:00pm

Stuart MacDonald leads a “Tribute to Four Brothers” concert at 7pm at the Whatcom Jazz Music Arts Center (WJMAC) at Unity Spiritual Center, 1095 Telegraph Rd. “Four Brothers” is a tune…

Garden Club Meeting

7:00pm

Lars Crabo of the Lepidopterists’ Society will educate attendees on the local and new arrivals of various moth species at tonight’s Birchwood Garden Club meeting at 7pm at Whatcom Museum’s…

A Christmas Story

7:30pm

The Theater Arts Guild’s rendition of A Christmas Story: The Musical concludes this week with performances at 7:30pm Wednesday through Friday, and 3pm Saturday at Mount Vernon’s Lincoln…

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