Reporting from the heart of Cascadia


Terramar Brewing

Making a splash in Edison

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

The small town of Edison in Skagit County is a miniature food mecca, with multiple restaurants, pubs, a great deli and a world-class bakery. Until recently, however, it has not had a brewery or a pizzeria. That has now been corrected, since Terramar Brewing opened its doors a few months ago.

Tucked down Gilkey Avenue behind the Smith & Vallee art gallery, the new brewpub has already made a big splash with locals and tourists alike.

Owners Jen and Chris Barker bring combined…

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All Aboard

An Excursion in the San Juans

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

The sun broke through the clouds as we pulled away from the slip in Squalicum Harbor, Jeffrey snaking the M/V David B between weather-worn fishing boats into the open waters of Bellingham Bay.

We were headed out for a four-day photography trip in the magical San Juan Islands and anticipation was running high. I’d been co-leading photography workshops with Alan Sanders aboard the David B in Alaska for years—nice work if you can get it—but this was our first workshop on the boat in…

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The Noble Beyond

Searching for Sasquatch

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Standing between six and 10 feet tall, long-armed, stooped posture, giving off a strong bad odor, primarily nocturnal and shy, possibly displaying aggressive, territorial behavior. These are descriptions that Sasquatch experts and enthusiasts mostly agree on.

But are they animal? Supernatural? Extraterrestrial? All three theories have their adherents; differences of opinion abound and bona fide data is sorely absent.

With these questions in mind, journalist John Zada left his home in…

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Saturday Sights

Get creative for Christmas

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

A couple of issues back, I offered up a “Local Love” guide pointing to art-related events designed with holiday shoppers in mind. Turns out I could’ve published a much longer screed on the topic, as creative Christmas collaborations show no sign of slowing down in coming days. This time around, I’m sticking to highlighting happenings taking place Sat., Dec. 7 in or near downtown Bellingham. Take notes, find unique gifts, and support the artists in your community.

To start your search,…

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On Stage

The Naughty List

A one-stop shop for holiday cheer

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Charlie Fun-Facts doesn’t resemble a typical Santa Claus.

For one thing, the founder of Frisky Fandoms Burlesque isn’t a rotund fella with a long white beard. Additionally, she’s never traveled to the North Pole, doesn’t keep a flock of reindeer at the ready in her backyard, and shows a bit more skin than most Kris Kringles do during this frosty time of year.

Nevertheless, during performances of “The Naughty List: A Holiday Cabaret” Dec. 12-13 at Bellingham’s Broadway Hall, Charlie…

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State of the Sound

New report indicates additional marine stress

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

On the surface, the Salish Sea looks beautiful, but it is in grave trouble. Southern Resident orcas, Chinook salmon, steelhead, and many other species are listed under the Endangered Species Act. Toxic chemicals and pharmaceuticals continue to pollute our waterways. Shellfish beds are routinely closed to commercial and recreational harvest due to fecal contamination. More indicators point in the direction of continued decay than in the direction of recovery, but the picture is not…

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Holiday Happenings

Celebrate in song

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Even though I live a life dictated by deadlines, I am not as proficient as I should be when it comes to planning ahead.

That said, I’ve known for months what story I’d be writing for this issue of the Cascadia Weekly. Since the day it was announced that Wayne Newton would be coming to the area Dec. 6-7 to play a pair of shows at the Skagit Casino Resort, I penciled him into my editorial schedule.

I’m not sure what drew me so instantly to the legendary Las Vegas performer when…

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Best of Bellingham 2019
Best Neighborhood


The center of the universe has coasted north over the years of our annual Best of Bellingham reader survey—Columbia and Sunnyland neighborhoods feature a vital mix of charming long-established Craftsman homesteads, innovative businesses and artist studios. They’ve taken their share of infill, proving urban densities can make a city come alive. The city’s bike and pedestrian plans have matured in these neighborhoods. They feel centered. And it is not at all a coincidence that so many winners in our Best of Bellingham survey are located here.

See all the winners »
The Gristle
Work Horse, Not Show Horse

WORK HORSE, NOT SHOW HORSE: Instability continues in local elections with the announced departure of Jeff Morris, the senior representative of the 40th Legislative District.

Murmurs had suggested Morris—with a long and distinguished 23 years of service in Olympia—would not seek…

Rumor Has It
Of Art and Artists:

Often when we talk about the time during a musician’s life that is not devoted to music, we are speaking about their day job, the thing they must do in order to suffer for their art.

Turns out, many local musicians are using their time away from their instruments and practice spaces to…

Cold and Alone

A few weeks ago, I reluctantly turned my furnace on for the first time since March. I was reluctant mostly because I didn’t want to admit that those lovely summer months were coming to a close and we were about to face months of time spent indoors while it poured buckets outside. Then I…


Nonsense reworded is still nonsense. The intellectual word for this phenomenon is “sophistry;” the profane word is “bullshit.” They are equal.
We all justify our actions with our…

Healthy policy

I have been advocating for single-payer health care for a very long time. Efforts by others in the United States stretch back over a century.
Most developed countries over that time have seen…

No safety in open carry

Today, while on the corner of Railroad Avenue and Magnolia Street, I exited a cafe to see a row of five men crossing the street, all of them wearing semi-automatic pistols on their hips.…

Today's Events
Holiday Festival of the Arts


More than 100 local artists and craftspeople will show and sell their creative wares as part of Allied Arts’ 40th annual “Holiday Festival of the Arts” from 10am-7pm daily through Christmas…

Deck the Old City Hall


Get in the holiday spirit when the annual “Deck the Old City Hall” continues this week from 12-5pm Wednesday through Sunday at Whatcom Museum’s Old City Hall, 121 Prospect St. Entry is by…

Giving Tree


Take part in the annual “Giving Tree” at Village Books locales in Bellingham (1200 11th St.) and Lynden (430 Front St.) Choose an angel ornament from the tree in the store and purchase a book…

Gilded Winter Art Market


Attend a Gilded Winter Art Market from 12pm-5pm Thursday, 10am-8pm Friday and Saturday, and 12pm-5pm Sunday in La Conner at the Lux Art Center, 603 Morris St. Paintings, mixed media,…

Miracle Pop-Up Holiday Cocktail Bar


From 4pm-1am daily through New Year’s Eve, a Miracle Pop-Up Holiday Cocktail Bar can be visited at Swim Club, 1147 11th St. At the international event that started and continues in New York…

Crazy for You


Judith Owens-Lancaster directs showings of the musical Crazy for You continuing this week with performances at 7:30pm Thursday through Saturday, and 2pm Sunday at the Bellingham Theatre…

Narnia the Musical


Experience a musical presentation of the first and most famous story of C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia when Narnia the Musical continues this week with performances at 7:30pm Thursday…

Number the Stars


Drama, adventure and humor can be expected when showings of the stage adaptation of the World War II-era bestseller Number the Stars continue this week with performances at 7:30pm Thursday…

Working, A Musical


Hear songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Stephen Schwartz, James Taylor, Susan Birkenhead and more when Working: A Musical shows this week at 7:30pm Thursday and Friday, and 2pm and 7:30pm Saturday…

Pacific Arts Market


Several dozen local artists and crafters will show and sell a variety of work—including jewelry, fine art, photography, textiles, clothing, bath and body, specialty foods, home decor, paper…

Holiday Port Festival


Music by local bands, orchestras, choirs and performance groups, visits and photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, art activities for kids, horse-and-wagon rides, gingerbread house viewings and…

Winter wonderland


The Children’s Museum of Skagit County will host its annual “Winter Wonderland” event from 12-6pm Friday, 10am-6pm Saturday, and 11am-6pm Sunday at the Outlet Shoppes at Burlington, 448…

Olde Fashioned Christmas


Members of the Ferndale Heritage Society will help visitors step back in time at the 27th annual “Olde Fashioned Christmas” taking place from 5pm-9pm Friday, 1pm-9pm Saturday, and 1pm-5pm…

Honk! The Musical


Students ages 9-12 will present showings of Honk! The Musical at 7pm Friday, 2pm and 7pm Saturday, and 2pm Sunday at the Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth, 1059 N. State St. Tickets are $10…

Carols by Candlelight


The Cantabile Chamber Choir presents “Carols by Candlelight” at 7:30pm Friday at the Depot Arts Center in Anacortes, and 4pm Sunday in Mount Vernon at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. The choir…

Skagit Valley Academy of Dance presents The Nutcracker


Skagit Valley Academy of Dance brings its 30th annual rendition of The Nutcracker alive with performances at 7:30pm Friday and Saturday, and 2pm Sunday in Mount Vernon at McIntyre Hall, 2501…

World Tour with the North Cascades Concert Band


The North Cascades Concert Band presents “World Tour” performances at 7:30pm Friday at Whatcom Community College’s Syre Students Center, 3pm Saturday at Anacortes High School’s PAC, and 3pm…

Family Holiday Fair


“Celebrate the Season” will be the theme of a Family Holiday Fair taking place from 11am-3pm Saturday and Sunday at the Port of Anacortes Warehouse, 100 Commercial Ave. Photos with Santa,…

Holiday Harbor Lights Art Show


Browse the works of Blaine fine artists and hand crafters in a festive setting at the Holiday Harbor Lights Art Show happening from 12pm-6pm Saturday and Sunday at the Blaine Pavilion, 635…

Birding for Kids


Skagit Guided Adventures hosts “Birding for Kids” excursions from 2:30pm-4:30pm Saturdays and Sundays through March. Prices vary; transportation and binoculars will be provided. Reservations…

Holiday Ice Show


“Finding Christmas Spirit” will be the theme of a Bellingham Figure Skating Club holiday show at 5pm Saturday, and 2pm Sunday at the Bellingham Sportsplex, 1225 Civic Field Way. In addition…

Wintersong with Vox Pacifica


The all-women choir known as Vox Pacifica presents its “Wintersong” concert at 7:30pm Saturday, and 4pm Sunday at the First Congregational Church, 2401 Cornwall Ave. Audience will hear choral…

Langar in Lynden


All are welcome at a Langar event from 11am-2pm in Lynden at Guru Nanak Gursikh Gurdwara, 176 E. Pole Rd. Langar is the sacred community free kitchen of the Sikh people and every temple…

Silver Tea


Enjoy refreshments and musical entertainment at an annual Silver Tea taking place from 2pm-5pm at the Everson Library, 104 Kirsch Dr. Specialty teas will be served by Laurie and Charles…

Candlelight Concert


Harpsichordist Jonathan Oddie and flutist Jeffrey Cohan will perform sonatas by Johann Sebastian Bach at a Candlelight Concert at 2pm at Bellingham’s First Presbyterian Church, 1031 N. Garden…

Second Sunday Jazz


Acoustic guitar duo Jamie & Tim perform at a “Second Sunday Jazz” concert from 2pm-3:30pm at the community meeting room at the Anacortes Public Library, 1220 10th St. Tim Lerch is one of the…

Community Meal


All are welcome to share in a warm meal served directly at your table in a warm, friendly atmosphere at a monthly Community Meal from 2pm-3:30pm at the First Christian Church, 495 E.…

One Family Indivisible


Steven Greenebaum shares ideas from One Family Indivisible: A Spiritual Memoir at 4pm at Village Books, 1200 11th St. Committed to social and environmental justice, Greenebaum has dedicated…

Holiday Parade and Tree Lighting


A Holiday Parade and Tree Lighting begins at 5pm in downtown Mount Vernon. In addition to the 38 trees that will be illuminated throughout the downtown core, there will also be a tree…

For the Love of Chamber Music


Join faculty artists Eric Kean, Jen Weeks, Judy Widrig, Pat Nelson, and Erika Block for a potpourri of viola, piano and wind music at a “For the Love of Chamber Music” concert at 7:30pm at…

The Gateway Show


Attend a monthly “Gateway Show” at 8pm at the Upfront Theatre, 1208 Bay St. The night’s entertainment will feature five comics who will do a sober set, get extremely high at an undisclosed…