Rumor Has It

A New Hope

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

So, after a week that felt like a month and aged us all a decade, we have a new president-elect (and a new vice president-elect—get it, Kamala!).

I’m not here to write yet another election postmortem (I don’t want to jinx the thing) or offer words of unity (I have little faith and even less interest in that). Instead I’ve got something else on my mind.

A new hope—it ain’t just for Star Wars anymore.

With the incoming administration comes hope for all kinds of things: national pandemic policy, rollback of environmental rollbacks, a leader who you can reasonably expect won’t say, “I know you are but what am I?” at a press conference—in other words, a return to some recognizable form of sanity.

What also comes with a new administration is revived hope for federal financial aid for the businesses hardest hit by COVID-19 shutdowns, and as I might’ve mentioned a time or 20, music venues are near the top of that list.

Yes, this means I’m going to ask you to contact elected officials. Again. But not just yet.

Instead, I’m going to remind you about Keep Music Live, the organization operating in partnership with the Whatcom Community Foundation to raise $10 million in grant money for Washington’s music venues. Federal aid is the dream, but the reality is venues are going to need assistance from more than just the feds.

When I asked Wild Buffalo owner Craig Jewell to talk to me about the state of his venue for this week’s music story, I did so as a means of also talking about Keep Music Live, where Craig is a board member. It is, after all, the thing that consumes his time.

But rather than talking about the hard spot he finds himself in, he wanted to focus on his history with the venue and how much he loves it there—and I get it. He’s a pretty sunny guy and talking about the potential loss of the thing he holds most dear doesn’t come as naturally to him as focusing on better days.

However, I’m not him, so I’m just going to say it plain: Every single independent music venue in town that has not gone out of business is operating in a state of accumulating debt and by the grace of their landlords and the governor’s eviction moratorium. What reserve cash they had on hand is gone. We will no doubt lose some of them. Without help, we could lose all of them. Period. Full stop.

I don’t know anyone who is swimming in money right now. Most of us are living on incomes that have been negatively impacted by COVID shutdowns—myself included. Any ask is a big ask. But if enough of us give a little, we could accomplish something really big. Find out more at http://www.keepmusiclivewa.com.

Past Columns
Back to the Future

September 15, 2021

Takin’ It To the Streets

September 1, 2021

Days of Delta

August 18, 2021

Just the Vaxx

August 4, 2021

Sounds of Summer

July 7, 2021

Signs of Life

June 23, 2021

Shots fired

June 9, 2021

Show Them the Money

May 26, 2021

Bits and Pieces

May 12, 2021

Life Rolls On

April 28, 2021

Party in the Park

April 14, 2021

Life In Normal(ish) Times

March 17, 2021

Signs of Life

March 3, 2021

What You Pay For

February 17, 2021

Eat for Art’s Sake

February 3, 2021

Save Our Stages

January 20, 2021

Year in Review

January 6, 2021

A Christmas Miracle

December 23, 2020

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Monday
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10:00am

Join community organizations, businesses and local government Sept. 20-26 for the City of Bellingham’s third annual ALL IN for Climate Action Week. Fun and informative events, activities and…

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10:00am

Eat your way through town as part of Bellingham Vegan Restaurant Week taking place Monday through Sunday at participating eateries that will be offering at least one plant-based option for…

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10:00am

Join Sustainable Connections for Eat Local Month through September as they support and share the work of local farmers, fishers, ranchers, chefs, restaurateurs and grocers in Whatcom, Skagit,…

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10:00am

“Future Artifacts” shows from 10am-5pm daily through Oct. 10 in La Conner at the Museum of Northwest Art, 121 S. First St. The exhibit features work by Lummi Nation glass artist Dan Friday,…

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10:00am

Choose from 22 varieties of apples located on 62 acres at U-pick events taking place from 10am-5pm Wednesdays through Sundays at Bellewood Farms, 6140 Guide Meridian. Free apple bin train…

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11:00am

“Bowls to Fill,” featuring members of Whatcom Artist of Clay & Kiln (WACK), will be featured from 11am-5pm daily through Saturdays, and 11am-4pm Sundays through September at Good Earth…

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11:00am

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11:00am

From 11am-5pm Wednesday through Sunday, visit La Conner’s Pacific Northwest Quilt & Fiber Arts Museum, 703 S. Second St. Currently on display are “Color is my Second Language: Paper Quilts by…

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Works by as many as 45 Whatcom Art Guild members can be viewed from 11am-5pm daily at Whatcom Art Market, 1103 11th St. Photography and jewelry by Judy Bishop will be featured through Sept. 26.

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12:00pm

View “Fluid Formations: The Legacy of Glass in the Pacific Northwest,” “El Zodíaco Familiar,” “All Dressed Up,” a “Whatcom Artist Studio Tour 2021 Showcase” and “People of the Sea and Cedar”…

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7:30pm

Michele Lowe’s The Smell of the Kill will conclude this weekend with performances at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday, and 2pm Sunday at the Bellingham Theatre Guild, 1600 H St. The dark…

Proof

7:30pm

David Auburn’s Proof continues this week with showings at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday, and 2pm Sunday in Lynden at the Claire vg Thomas Theatre, 655 Front St. The drama tells the story…

Fall Show at River Gallery

10:00am

View the annual multi-artist, multi-medium “Fall Show” from 10am-5pm Fridays through Sundays until Oct. 17 in Mount Vernon at River Gallery, 19313 Landing Rd. (off Dodge Valley Road).

WACK Studio Tour

10:00am

Twenty-one members of the Whatcom Artists of Clay and Kiln will show and sell their work as part of the inaugural WACK Studio Tour taking place from 10am-5pm Friday through Sunday at 11…

Leaves and Wings

11:00am

View Anacortes-based sculptor Lanny Bergner’s new exhibit, “Leaves and Wings,” from 11am-5pm Friday through Sunday in Edison at i.e. gallery, 5800 Cains Court. Bergner uses butane torches to…

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11:00am

Peruse multimedia pieces by Pieter VanZanden and paintings by Melissa Broersma from 11am-5pm Fridays through Sunday in Edison at Smith & Vallee Gallery, 5742 Gilkey Ave.

Harvest Time at Tulip Town

2:00pm

Celebrate the season at “The Harvest at Tulip Town” starting this weekend from 2pm-7pm Friday, 10am-7pm Saturday, and 10am-5pm Sunday in Mount Vernon at Tulip Town, 15002 Bradshaw Rd. Hay…

Community Boating Center Fall hours

10:00am

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Diablo Lake Boat Tours

11:30am

Seattle City Light and the North Cascades Institute team up to offer the final Diablo Lake Boat Tours of the season with outings aboard the Alice Ross IV at 11:30am and 2:30pm Saturday and…

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7:30pm

Bellingham Symphony Orchestra kicks off its 46th season with “Soaring Notes” concerts at 7:30pm Saturday, and 3pm Sunday at the Mount Baker Theatre, 104 N. Commercial St. The performances…

Birchwood Farmers Market

9:00am

Find fresh produce and more from as many as 10 growers and producers from 9am-2pm at the Birchwood Farmers Market in the neighborhood’s former Albertsons parking lot, 1538 Birchwood Ave. The…

Final Skagit Valley Farmers Market

10:00am

Attend the final Skagit Valley Farmers Market of the season from 10am-2pm just north of Christianson’s Nursery in and around the Vinery, 15612 Best Rd. The market features a full range of…

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1:00pm

Attend a free “E-Bikes: Intro & Test Rides” event at 1pm at the Cordata Park Picnic Shelter, 4510 Cordata Pkwy. Hear a quick intro about E-Bikes, then test ride a bunch of 4242 Custom’s local…

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1:00pm

As part of “Fourth Sundays: Audubon at the Museum,” a volunteer from the North Cascades Audubon Society will be on hand from 1pm-3pm in the John M. Edson Hall of Birds to answer questions…

Family Promise Bed Race

2:00pm

Sign up in advance for the Interfaith Coalition’s fourth annual Family Promise Bed Race taking place from 2pm-4pm at the parking lot at Civic Field, 1255 Civic Field Way. If you just want to…

Gelato and Poetry Night

6:00pm

Attend “Gelato and Poetry Night” from 6pm-7:30pm in the outdoor seating area at All That Jazz Boutique Gallery, 1015 Railroad Ave., #105. The first half-hour will be devoted to the poetry of…