Reporting from the heart of Cascadia


Mark Lanegan

Never not busy

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

When we think of music in Seattle during the 1990s, some names come handily to mind. Kurt Cobain. Chris Cornell. Eddie Vedder. Layne Staley. So many of us are intimately familiar with their stories. For those of us who grew up then, their musical triumphs gave us the soundtrack to our lives and their tragedies are etched in our hearts.

Lesser known is Mark Lanegan.

Make no mistake: Lanegan’s grunge bona fides are legit. He was a member of Screaming Trees, along with brothers Van and…

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Smoking Crow

Fear and Love

Not your average memoir

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

With the recent news that Saudi Arabia will soon be offering tourist visas, the publication of Adam Valen Levinson’s new memoir/travelogue, The Abu Dhabi Bar Mitzvah: Fear and Love in the Modern Middle East, is perfectly timed. More than an account of his travels, the book describes both realities and the flavor of life in countries ranging from Syria to Pakistan to Somalia.

Levinson grew up in the shadow of 9/11, and as a young adult recognized how many “fear” messages about the…

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Smoking Crow

Pint Party

A Beer Week countdown

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

By the time this paper hits the streets, only four days will remain of Bellingham Beer Week.

But the pint party is far from over, and even if you forgo adult responsibilities to devote days and nights to attending all of the remaining events highlighting the city’s ever-growing craft beer scene, it’s unlikely you’d be able to cram them all in. That said, it won’t hurt to try. Following are many—but not all—ways to enjoy the frothy festivities.

On Wed., April 25, bring your dog…

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Smoking Crow
On Stage

Return Engagements

A madman and a mime

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

This is the story of a madman and a mime.

It’s also the tale of how two actors who spent time living and studying in Whatcom County but left it behind are returning to share some of what they’ve learned since they left.

First up, Robert “Robbie” Bowman will be peforming his award-winning production of Diary of a Madman Sun., April 29 at the Bellingham Theatre Guild.

The showing of the adaptation of Gogol’s comedy about the fantasy world of a low-ranking civil servant will raise…

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Smoking Crow

Skagit Stop

Art at the schoolhouse

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Our Sunday plan of action centered around visiting relatives in Anacortes, but my suggestion to take advantage of the proximity of the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival by adding a couple of events to our itinerary was met with approval by my two fellow day-trippers.

After exiting the freeway and securing directions from a friendly woman at the Mount Vernon Chamber of Commerce, we set off for Christianson’s Nursery, where we planned to pick up a blooming beauty for our hostess and also…

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Smoking Crow


The genius of Hedy Lamarr

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

For years we’ve been hearing that Hedy Lamarr, one of the most beautiful women of Hollywood’s classic era, invented the “frequency hopping” technology that’s integral to modern weaponry and communications. But exactly how that’s the case and the extent to which that is true have not been clear until the release of Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story, a documentary by Alexandra Dean.

For example, if you assumed, as I did, that Lamarr just came up with an idea first, but then…

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Smoking Crow

Orchard Outing

Run for the bees

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Most people run from bees, not in support of them.

The latter scenario will be in full effect at BelleWood Acres’ third annual “Run for the Bees 5K” happening Sun., April 29 near and among the 32 acres of blooming fruit tree orchards near Lynden.

With apples at the front of a long list of plants pollinated by honeybees, it’s of particular importance to the powers that be at BelleWood to keep the flying insect on the radar. In just the past 10 years, more than 40 percent of bee…

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Smoking Crow

Protecting The Salish Sea

Panel discusses oil sands pipeline

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

It’s unfolding in another country, yet also just a few miles from here.

In 2013, Texas-based Kinder Morgan applied to expand the pipeline system from a capacity of 300,000 barrels per day to 890,000 barrels per day. The Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain expansion would include building a new pipeline, constructing 12 new pump stations, 19 new storage tanks and three new marine berths located at the Westridge Marine Terminal in the Burrard Inlet near Vancouver.

The expansion would mean…

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Smoking Crow
Best of Skagit
Best Tulip Farm


It’s tulip time, and the fields are alive with the light and color of spring. The word’s out, and this spectacular time in the Skagit Valley is no longer a secret.

But Skagit still holds a lot of secrets—mist-shrouded valleys, swollen and mighty rivers, and frosty high country thick with dark pines and devil’s club. And there are the hidey holes—the hamlets sprinkled along old forgotten highways, the winding sloughs and channels of the fertile delta, and the coast beyond—dotted with islands pungent from salt and rain. There are the bars and diners and coffeehouses, the playgrounds and trails. And there are the people who fill them, hearty and happy. And though our readers revealed some of these secrets, Skagit remains a treasure undiscovered.

Entries by Tim Johnson, Amy Kepferle, Carey Ross, Stephanie Young, and Trail Rat
Photos by Jessamyn Tuttle and Andy Porter

See all the winners »
The Gristle
Symptoms of Pain

SYMPTOMS OF PAIN: It suggests volumes about the condition of America that we’re suffering a national epidemic of addiction to painkillers—overprescribed on narcotics as a means to gloss the cruelest aspects of our benighted health care options, overconsumed as a means to numb our…

Pathways to Homeownership

Another rent hike. Another move. Another school system.

Another family—maybe yours—is pushed farther out of town, and farther from jobs, stores, healthcare services, public transportation and higher education opportunities.

This narrative has become a standard in Whatcom County. It…

Village Books
The gloom of night

I have recently found myself increasingly frustrated by the steady stream of misinformation being put forth on social media by our President in regards to the current state of the United…

Youth Fair

The 30th year of the Whatcom County Youth Fair (WCYF), was remarkable. More than 600 kids participated, from 13 counties in two states. This two-day, hands-on learning fair is run smoothly by…

Keep it local

I always enjoy your annual Best of Skagit issue, and usually learn about someplace new. I liked many of the selections. The inclusion of Cabela’s down by the Tulalip outlet malls for Best…

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Today's Events
Skagit Valley Tulip Festival


The flower-focused Skagit Valley Tulip Festival takes place throughout April at a variety of venues from Mount Vernon to Edison to La Conner, Anacortes, and beyond. In addition to being able…

Free Appliance Pick-up


In honor of Earth Day, Appliance Depot is offering free pick-up of your appliances—whether they’re working or non-working—from April 7-May 5 in Whatcom County (typical fees are $10-$60).…

Bellingham Beer Week


Beer Olympics, beer dinners, an Earth Day cleanup party, a cornhole championship, book signings, multiple release parties, hops planting, a mountain bike festival, brew-focused presentations,…

The Lewis & Clark Expedition


Kids in grades K-5 are encouraged to attend The Lewis & Clark Expedition: A Celebration of American Teamwork performances at 10am and 12:15pm Monday through Thursday at the Mount Baker…

English Country Dancing


Attend English Country Dancing classes from 1:30-3pm Thursdays at the Bellingham Senior Activity Center, 315 Halleck St. No experience or partner is necessary.

Mt. Baker Plant Sale


Come check out quality plants grown by students at a Mt. Baker Plant Sale happening from 3-6pm Thursday and Friday, and 10am-2pm Saturday at Mt. Baker High School, 4936 Deming Rd. Plants…

Jazz Jam


The Jazz Project’s Jud Sherwood hosts a rotating house trio featuring top-flight local and regional musicians at a Jazz Jam happening from 5:30-8:30pm Thursdays at Illuminati Brewing, 3950…

Pub Run


Join a weekly BBay Pub Run starting at 6pm every Thursday. Open to runners of all levels, excursions are 3-5 miles and BBay Ambassadors safely guide each pace group. This evening’s run starts…

Canadian Exploration


Photographer and adventurer Genny Langworthy helms “Vive le Quebec: Kayaking and Exploring French Canada” at 6:30pm at the Mount Vernon City Library, 315 Snoqualmie St. From the grassy…

Mexican Kitchen


Ana Jackson leads “Mexican Kitchen: Mi Casa es Su Casa” from 6:30-9:30pm at the Community Food Co-op, 1220 N. Forest ST. Tortilla soup, steamed tamales, sopas and a Guadalajara-style custard…

Balkan Folk Dancers


The Balkan Folk Dancers meet from 7-9:30pm Thursdays at the Fairhaven Library, 1117 12th St. Dances are taught, and mentoring is available. Suggested donation is $5.

Get Gritty


“Get Gritty: Endurance Psychology of the Barkley Marathons” will be the focus of a talk by runner and staffer Nickademus de la Rosa at 7:15pm at Fairhaven Runners, 1209 11th St. Nick—who…

9 to 5, the Musical


Friendship and revenge take center stage when 9 to 5, the Musical concludes this week with performances at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday at the Anacortes Community Theatre, 918 M Ave. The…

Misty Flowers


Elements of jazz, folk and blues will combine when Misty Flowers performs at a House Concert at 7:30pm at the Chuckanut Center, 103 Chuckanut Drive N. Suggested donation will be $5-$10 at the…

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