This Week's Cover


Do You Really Want to Know?

For almost 30 years of his life, Jeff Carroll was, as most of us are, ignorant of Huntington’s Disease. Then, when he was in his late 20s, his mother became ill and Huntington’s officially entered his lexicon and forever changed his life.

Exceedingly rare, Huntington’s Disease, or HD, is a degenerative neurological illness with effects on the body that are best described as having ALS, schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s at the same time. Onset tends to be early, the progression is long and

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This Week

The Gristle

Taxation and Representation


All political power is inherent in the people, and governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed.
—Washington State Constitution Article One, Section One, Sentence One

The cardinal rule of representative government is, when the consenting governed have their infrequent and fragile moment to speak on what has been proposed in their name, you do not waste their precious time or dishonor their opinion. You do not challenge that opinion. You

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Do You Really Want to Know?

A life and death decision


For almost 30 years of his life, Jeff Carroll was, as most of us are, ignorant of Huntington’s Disease. Then, when he was in his late 20s, his mother became ill and Huntington’s officially entered his lexicon and forever changed his life.

Exceedingly rare, Huntington’s Disease, or HD, is a degenerative neurological illness with effects on the body that are best described as having ALS, schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s at the same time. Onset tends to be early, the progression is long and

Continue Reading »


Record Store Day

Vinyl is forever

Given the general air of revelry and excitement that surrounds Record Store Day, it can be easy to forget that its creation was as much a response to a crisis as it was an excuse for celebration.

The year was 2007, and it was apparent that independent record stores were becoming casualties of the internet changing the price of music from already pretty cheap to free in nearly all cases. However, one retail sector of the music store was not just holding the line, it was actually experiencing

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Mixing matter at MoNA

A glorious assemblage of David Eisenhour’s sculptures of sea creatures, cast in silvered bronze, greets the visitor to “Neo-Naturalist,” currently at La Conner’s Museum of Northwest Art (MoNA). These brilliant objects celebrate our joy of discovering the beauty in nature. 

Guest Curator Robert Yoder places a very different piece opposite the Eisenhour gems. The huge painting “Switchback,” by Michael Paul Miller, shocks with its pathos and despair. Here’s a ravaged old man who

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Breakfast on Blanchard

Switchbacks and squirrel chats

It was just a shade before sunup, and I’d already been chugging my way up through pitch-dark, mist-shrouded forest for the better part of an hour when daybreak finally broke over Blanchard Mountain enough for me to switch my headlamp off without worrying about inadvertently stepping off the trail and plummeting straight down-slope into Samish Bay.

Even though I could still hardly see beyond the next tree trunk and/or boulder at that point, a sudden surge of self-propelled animal joy jolted

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Burger Express

Get your caboose to Sedro-Woolley


As you drive east along Highway 20 heading into Sedro-Woolley, you might not notice the old red and white caboose in a parking lot just outside of town. Or if you do notice it, you might think twice about stopping there to order food. That, however, would be a mistake, because this caboose is Skagit Valley Burger Express, home of the best burgers in Skagit County.

Although the Burger Express has been around for a while now, I hadn’t seriously considered visiting it until personal

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Northwest Bookshelf

Native art, native trees and a journey to the north


Northwest Coast Indian Art
Bill Holm (University of Washington Press)

From blankets to gambling sticks, coffins to rain hats, spoons to shaman’s paraphernalia, seemingly every material aspect of the indigenous cultures of the northern Pacific Coast was decorated with representations of the natural world, usually animals. Salmon, bear, raven, wolf, whale, seal, beaver: the wild creatures of the British Columbian and southeast Alaskan coastlines and islands are memorialized in bold strokes of

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On Stage

Ded Reckoning

Singing their way through space


There’s a moment in Ded Reckoning: A Space Musical in Two Acts when Tiny, one of the five crew members aboard the Galaxy Guppy, finally understands what the space/time continuum is all about.

Thanks to the helpful (and catchy) lyrics in “Moving Fast”—the song that accompanied the “aha!” moment for Tiny—I also came much closer to comprehending why the six-plus years the crew had been adrift in space translated to nearly 48 years for those they left behind on planet Earth. 

Like the 11

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While We’re Young

Friends without borders

The title of Noah Baumbach’s wry generation-gap comedy, While We’re Young, could be read as an ode to youth, like the name of a lost Cole Porter tune.

It could also be taken as sarcasm, as when Rodney Dangerfield shouts, “Let’s go, while we’re young!” to Ted Knight’s slowpoke golfer in Caddyshack.

Either way works, and does it ever. While We’re Young pairs two New York couples, one middle-aged and anxious and the other millennial and carefree. Both are in for a satirical

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Best of Bellingham

What's the best neighborhood? The one you live in, judging from this fiercely competitive category. With more than 2,400 entries in the Cascadia Weekly readers choice awards, every neighborhood was named again and again. But with so many terrific places--Trader Joe's, Hardware Sales, Kulshan Brewing Company, Jeckyl & Hyde, Homeskillet, on and on--Sunnyland comes out on top.

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Apr 19


Skagit Valley Tulip Festival: The flower-focused Skagit Valley Tulip Festival takes place throughout the month of April at a variety of venues from Mount Vernon to Edison to La Conner, Anacortes, and beyond. In addition to being able to explore fields of budding daffodils and tulips, there'll be a street fair, arts events, a kids garage sale, a boat show, a tulip run and tulip pedal, live music, a quilt walk, a wine festival, roller derby, book sales, a parade and much more. Head to the website to check out the full roster more »

Rexville Grange Art Show: Peruse and purchase a variety of fine arts and crafts from local artists—including painting, photography, pottery, glass, jewelry, weaving, woodwork, felted hats and more—at the annual Rexville Grange Art Show happening from 10am-6pm daily from April 10-19 at Mount Vernon's Rexville Grange, 19299 Rexville Grange Rd. more »

The Spitfire Grill: Performances of The Spitfire Grill continue this week with shows at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday, and 2pm Sunday, at the Anacortes Community Theatre, 918 M Ave. The dramatic musical focuses on a girl trying to make a fresh start in a small town in Wisconsin, and the power of redemption. Tickets are $20; additional showings happen through April 25. more »

Harvey: The Lynden Performing Arts Guild continues its production of Harvey this weekend at 7:30pm Thursday and Friday, and 2pm Saturday and Sunday at the Claire vg Thomas Theatre, 655 Front St. The comedy focuses on Elwood P. Dowd, an affable man who claims to have an unseen (and presumably imaginary) friend Harvey—a six-foot, three-and-one-half-inch-tall rabbit. Tickets are $8-$12. Additional showings happen through April 26. more »

Ded Reckoning Space Musical: Kamarie Chapman and Spencer Willows' Ded Reckoning: A Space Musical in Two Acts concludes this week with performances at 7:30pm Thursday through Sunday at the iDiOM Theater, 1418 Cornwall Ave. The show deals with "issues of homesickness, sibling rivalry, and what happens when you are faced with the choice between carrying out your duty and following your passion." P.S. The soundtrack for the show features musicians from local bands Pan Pan, Party Favorites, and Cherry Blossom Family Delivery. more »

I Hate Hamlet: Find out what happens when an actor relocates to New York after his television series has been cancelled when I Hate Hamlet concludes this week with showings at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday, and 2:30pm Sunday, in Oak Harbor at the Whidbey Playhouse, 730 SE Midway Blvd. Tickets are $18. more »

The Foreigner: Larry Shue's The Foreigner opens this weekend with shows at 7:30pm Friday and Saturday, and 2pm Sunday, at the Bellingham Theatre Guild, 1600 H St. The comedy takes place in a fishing lodge in rural Georgia and focuses on a man who overhears more than he should after being falsely identified as a French man who speaks no English. Tickets are $8-$14; additional showings happen through May 2. more »

Mount Vernon Street Fair: Attend the 31st annual Tulip Festival Street Fair from 10am-6pm Friday and Saturday, and 10am-5pm Sunday, in downtown Mount Vernon. In addition to perusing the hundreds of juried arts and crafts vendors, there'll be live entertainment, food court offerings and plenty of family-friendly fun. Entry is free. more »

One-Act Operas: Western Washington University's Western Opera Studio presents performances of Enrique Granados' tragic Goyescas and Puccini’s only comedy, Gianni Schicchi, at 7:30pm Friday and Saturday, and 2pm Sunday, at the school's Performing Arts Center (choir room 16). Both one-act operas premiered at the Metropolitan Opera during World War I. Tickets are $13-$16. Additional shows happen April 24-25. more »

Free Parks Day: Celebrate 100 years of discovery in America's parks at National Park Free Entrance Day Saturday and Sunday as part of National Park Week. Head to the website listed here to see what parks throughout Washington will be waiving entrance fees, commercial tour fees and transportation entrance fees. more »

Stamp & Coin Show: View and purchase collectible stamps, coins, postcards, covers, gold, silver and supplies from professional dealers from across the Northwest at the annual Stamp & Coin Show taking place from 10am-5pm Saturday and 10am-4pm Sunday at Hampton Inn's Fox Hall, 3985 Bennett Dr. Admission and parking are free. more »

Drowsy Chaperone Auditions: Attend open auditions for upcoming performances of The Drowsy Chaperone at 7pm Sunday and Monday at the Bellingham Theatre Guild, 1600 H St. Auditions will consist of dance and singing try-outs. Please be prepared to sing 16 measures of any up-tempo musical theatre song. more »

FAIRHAVEN RIDE: Meet up with folks from Fairhaven Bike & Ski for a weekly race-pace ride at 8am at the Fairhaven Village Green. more »

Rabbit Ride: Join members of the Mt. Baker Bike Club for the weekly “Rabbit Ride” starting at 8:30am at Fairhaven Bike & Ski, 1108 11th St. The 32-mile route sees riders heading down Chuckanut and back via Lake Samish. more »

Rabbit Ride: Join members of the Mount Baker Bicycle Club for a "Rabbit Ride" starting at 8:30am every Sunday at Fairhaven Bike & Ski, 1108 11th St. The 32-mile route takes riders down Chuckanut and back via Lake Samish. The group also holds weekly rides Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. more »

iDiOM Talk-Back: Audience members, actors, writers, directors and anyone interested in the past, present and future work at iDiOM Theater is invited to an "iDiOM Talk-Back" community forum taking place from 1-4pm at the theater's headquarters at 1418 Cornwall Ave. The theater is looking for feedback in advance of its new season, and will also answer questions for those who are interested in taking part in it. more »

Menopause the Musical: The play that was inspired by a "hot flash and a bottle of wine," Menopause the Musical, shows for one performance only at 3pm at the Mount Baker Theatre, 104 N. Commercial St. Tickets to the (sold-out) show are $22-$50. more »

Youth Concert: The monthly "Sunday @ 3 Youth Concert" begins at 3pm at Lynden's Jansen Art Center, 321 Front St. Entry to the showcase of talented young artists in music, opera, dance and theater is by donation. more »

Collage Poetry: Bellingham-based writer Jim Milstead reads poems from his new collection, Collage, at 4pm at Village Books, 1200 11th St. The book "includes the variable juxtaposition of serious poems about childhood, parents, children, political bias, trauma of war, environment degradation, peace, suicide, love and loss, along with lighthearted fanciful pieces about gluttony, marriage, the insatiable need to possess, and the hypothetical interactions of Adam and Eve." more »

Southside Community Meal: The Happy Valley Neighborhood Association hosts the monthly Southside Community Meal from 5-6:30pm at Our Saviour's Lutheran Church, 1720 Harris Ave. All are invited to the free event; guests are asked to bring a potluck dessert. more »

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