Bellingham Alive | September | 2018

Page 1

Spirits Cocktail recipes Distillery profiles


Bartender Q & As

Second Acts

Small Bites

Vibrant Mount Vernon

Fall Hikes


Smoked Apple Martini 13moons Restaurant



Canine’s hurt? Toothaches are no fun. Call us today.



Sehome Professional Center | 405 32nd Street, Suite 100 Bellingham | | 360.715.3333


ONE CARD - THREE GREAT LOCATIONS. Tulalip Resort Casino features a AAA Four-Diamond resort, seven restaurants, a huge variety of slots and table games, the luxurious T-Spa and the best headline entertainment around.

Quil Ceda Creek Casino has your winning vibe close to home with complete slots and tables, quick bites and big meals, plus North End entertainment featuring your favorite teams and live bands weekly.


Tulalip Bingo & Slots is your neighborhood go-to with 21 bingo sessions a week and over 200 of the best slots, plus Quil Ceda deli open seven days a week.





Fall has arrived, and bartenders all across Puget Sound are prepped for action. Read about some of the region’s top mixologists, along with local bars and distilleries, to see what kinds of magic they are stirring up. Meet Alexine Langdon at downtown Bellingham’s Hundred North, Michael Rothmeyer at The Union Tavern in Anacortes, and Sanjaya Malakar at The Barnacle on Orcas Island. There is a must-have list of bar gadgets, an explanation of why cocktail glasses are shaped certain ways, a rundown of where to get small bites to eat, and, of course, a handy bar guide. Cheers!

LIFESTYLE 15 Vibrant Mount Vernon: More than Tulips 16

By the Numbers


Lasting Image

19 In the Know  Western Governors University 20

Community  Northwest Youth Services


Game Changer  Todd Elsworth


In the Know  Electric Bicycling


Book Reviews


Who Knew?


In the Spotlight  Dave Mauro


In the Know  Expanding Chuckanut Bay Distillery


Apps We Love


Five Faves  Fall Hikes



32 Necessities  Early Fall Outdoor Entertaining 33

Local Find  Second Hand for Moms


Savvy Shopper  Material Wit


Pisco Sour from B-Town Kitchen and Raw Bar Photo © Pat McDonnell


Hair Removal


Beauty  Exfoliation




Second Acts


Featured Home  Beach Drive Remodel


Swinomish Casino Sports Bar & Grill


Dining Guide


Mixing Tin  The 202’s The Bullfighter


Restaurant Review  Black Sheep


Sip  Choosing A Beer


8 Great Tastes


Featured Event  Bellingham SeaFeast


Top Picks


Out of Town


The Scene  Bellingham Northwest Wine Festival


Editor’s Letter




Letters to the Editor


Meet A Staffer  Alicia Prozinski


Final Word


Second Acts Whether you’re starting up or starting over, here’s a look at how some local residents are retooling their lives for a Second Act. Susan Soltes gave up film production for blueberries in Bow. Russ Kendall went from being a photo editor to slinging pizza dough. Doug Robertson went from the courtroom to the classroom, and Audra Lawlor chucked a career on Wall Street for making and selling preserves from heirloom fruit on Orcas Island. Follow their footsteps as they follow their hearts.

Susan Soltes | Photo © Harley Soltes

September 2018 3

NOTES On the Web

Be sure to check us out at: Submit your events on our calendar! Do you have an event that you would like our readers to know about? offers an events calendar where viewers can search by day, venue, event type, or city. Go to and submit your event today. Once your event has been approved by our editorial staff, it is live.

© Pat McDonnell

ONLINE EXCLUSIVE Read about the family-run Deception Distilling in Anacortes, located on land once owned by a Prohibition-era bootlegger. The distillery’s colorful history is entwined with its current production of spirits — vodka, gin, and popular Apple Pie Moonshine. Included are recipes from owners Harold and Ronelle Christenson, along with suggestions what to pair the spirits with and where to buy them. Check it out by going to

Join us on


Previous digital editions now available online.



AGENDA NSLife Furry Friends


NSLife Fashion


Flower Arranging

Sign up for our FREE entertainment e-newsletter to get the latest on upcoming events and more!


BEST PROPERTIES ON THE MARKET This month: The Modern Movement is here! Gone are the days of walls and hallways, formal dining rooms, and sittings areas that become dust havens for furniture. The newest era of home building and style is all about space. A home is your oyster, so to speak, and with that comes the freedom and enjoyment of making that large open space your own. The modern movement is here and the homes below are great examples of modern style with hints of Northwest flair.

1.   Stunning new construction home, offering sunny western exposure with fabulous covered deck. Capturing double wide-never to change-8th & 9th fairway views this single story home with cutting edge open design — spacious spa master — two private guest suites. 3 Car garage “and then some” space is ideal for a work shop & more than gracious storage. High ceilings-large clean line windows — a touch of contemporary design with just enough comfort to call this home. $824,900, 8759 Wood Duck Way, Semiahmoo 3 Beds, 3.25 Baths, 2,950 SqFt, MLS: 1330570 Vancouver Blaine | Semiahmoo


2.   Live life for the view! Enjoy this delightful contemporary home in Birch Bay. Perched at the top of hill, admire views of Mt. Baker, the bay, and San Juans Islands. Master on the main floor, with large his/her closets and vanities. Two extra bedrooms down below can be either living or office space. Covered patio below, with large deck above, and of course head up the spiral staircase for the ultimate sitting area. Well constructed, high end finishes, a great value! $449,000, 5579 Bayvue Rd, Birch Bay 3 Beds, 2.5 Baths, 2,300 SqFt, MLS: 1339749

3.   Steps from the shore! Luxury waterfront condos at a great value! Choose between a ground floor unit with large patio space or enjoy the penthouse lifestyle with vaulted ceilings and panoramic views. Perfect for water lovers, beach combers, and professional relaxers. All units contain radiant floor heat, luxury finishes throughout, granite counters, hardwood floors, and stainless steel appliances. If you are looking for waterfront in the PNW, now is the chance! Starting at $599,000, Marin Condominiums at Semiahmoo, MLS: 1334798 & 1296462


Whatcom County...Even when it rains, I shine! Managing Broker 360-815-4718 September 2018 5

NOTES Editor’s Letter

Nursing a New Start the Second Time Around


his month, we feature the challenges that face people changing careers and how they manage to pull off a second act. Starting on p. 60, four area residents talk about making the big switcheroo. For me, the package really hit home. My younger sister Jody packed up a resume of life experiences, returned to our hometown of Lake Placid, N.Y., went back to school, and now has launched her second act: nursing. More than 30 years after getting her undergraduate degree in political science, Jody found herself taking classes in subjects like human biology, psychology, and statistics to satisfy prerequisites for two years © Chris Knight / North Country Community College of nursing school. Crammed between her fulltime studies were the kind of jobs familiar to her Act One life: she waitressed, hostessed, bartended, and managed our brother’s boat-rental business, walked dogs, worked as a front desk clerk, house-sat. Except this time, things were different — school was not just another gig. The classes weren’t easy (statistics in your 50s? Kill. Me. Now.), but she said she loved being a student the second time around. That was something we never heard from her in high school or her first go-round in college. Over the past two years, her nursing school classmates, most of them two or three decades younger, looked up to her. She was the class’s unofficial den mother, but it was more than that — they picked Jody, twice, as the class representative to give speeches at LPN and RN graduations. (Photo, above, shows her in a traditional nursing uniform at the North Country Community College ceremony with our dad, Bill.) The North Sound’s Second Act folks who tell their stories in this issue talk about changing careers for various reasons — to follow a long-held dream, embrace a late-life passion, transform a hobby into a full-time pursuit. For 6

Jody, an accumulation of life experiences led to what some consider the ultimate in service. If you’ve ever had surgery, spent time in a hospital, had a loved one depend on a nurse, then you know what I mean. Not all nurses are angels, but to me, many seem pretty close to sprouting wings. Not that anyone had a clue Jody would ever become a nurse. In hindsight, many of the jobs she had were service-oriented: at one time or another, she had gotten certified in teaching, massage therapy, and as an emergency medical technician. She had also owned a Mexican restaurant in her adopted hometown of Telluride, Colo., where she worked at various times on ski patrol, as a bartender, waitress, caterer, at an airport, as a landscaping assistant, dog-sitter and nanny. She also skied (a lot) and snowboarded, and was a literacy volunteer in Telluride, where she lived for nearly 30 years. While there, she volunteered as a radio DJ (her weekly show “Running with Scissors,” was a local hit), raced dirt bikes, hiked, worked the town’s numerous festivals. Most of which, in hindsight, prepared her for her Second Act (or 22nd, depending) — even the DJ part. When spring break rolled around this year, she used her free time to travel to Honduras to work with a nursing medical mission. The work was volunteer, and the nurses had to pay their own way. So Jody created a Go Fund Me page, writing and performing a nursing-rap video — not a surprise to those who know her — to convince people to pitch in. She raised all $2,500. Shortly after graduation, she got her first-choice job at the local regional medical center. Mention of the rap video was way down in her portfolio, but interviewers got a kick out of seeing it. Which just goes to show that to pull off a second act, you don’t have to change your tune, just maybe the stage you’re singing on. Bravo to those who do. 


NOTES Contributors


Pat McDonnell Pat is a freelance documentary photographer, filmmaker, and recent Bellingham transplant from Asheville, N.C. The past 20 years, his work has allowed him to immerse himself in various projects, from rural health camps in Nepal to shooting low-budget indie feature films in the Southeast. His free time often centers around biking and camping trips with his girlfriend and her son, street photography, and watching live music.  p. 42

Lisa Crosier Lisa Crosier is a master esthetician and owner of Lisa Crosier Skincare and Beauty Boutique located in downtown Bellingham. Since launching her business in 1994, Lisa’s greatest joy has been helping her clients feel beautiful from the inside out. She and her team of estheticians are specialists in treating problem skin from acne to aging. Lisa is an energetic educator who instructs women and teens on proper care of their skin, so they can achieve maximum results. Lisa enjoys running, Crossfit, and looks for any excuse to head to Mount Baker to ski.  p. 39

JUNE 2018 DISPLAY UNTIL JUNE 30 $3.99 US • $4.99 CAN

Military Bases

JULY 2018 DISPLAY UNTIL JULY 31 $3.99 US • $4.99 CAN

Patricia Herlevi

Bellingham Waterfront



tW as

h in

g to


C rea

n Fa


Br e a










I w

Patricia Herlevi is a true Washingtonian. Her articles have been published with the Skagit Valley Herald, Whatcom Talk, Bellingham Alive, Global Rhythm, Moviemaker and other publications. She has lived in Whatcom, King, Skagit, and Island counties where she writes and works as an expert astrologer. She enjoys spending time outdoors, learning about urban planning and design, architecture, and the fine and performing arts.  p. 15




Neal Tognazzini

Reach over 200,000 visitors & affluent female readers every issue!

360.483.4576 ext. 4


Neal splits his life between thinking and drinking: He has a Ph.D in philosophy and is a professor at Western Washington University, but he is also a beer sommelier and a nationally-ranked beer judge. Neal grew up in the Pacific Northwest, but spent a decade away after college. By the time he moved back to Bellingham in 2014, he had finally learned to appreciate the beauty of grey skies and the taste of craft beer. When he proposes a toast, it’s usually to his amazing wife of 14 years and his courageous and curious 6-year-old.  p. 84

to where you live.



tW as

h in

g to

n Fa


C rea ir

d Br e a









I w




JULY 2018


DISPLAY UNTIL JULY 31 $3.99 US • $4.99 CAN

Military Bases Bellingham Waterfront

Your LOCAL lifestyle magazine with national recognition.

Subscribe Today! $25 a year or $40 for two years.

Online at or 360.483.4576 x4

follow us IF MOTHER AMERICA COULD SPEAK Getting Your Home Ready To Sell Real Estate Premier Homes Outdoor Sculpture Gardens

JUNE 2018

MAY 2018

DISPLAY UNTIL JUNE 30 $3.99 US • $4.99 CAN

DISPLAY UNTIL MAY 31 $3.99 US • $4.99 CAN

PUBLICATIONS Bellingham Alive NSL Guestbook Couture Weddings MENU Seattle

PRESIDENT/PUBLISHER  Lisa Karlberg EDITOR IN CHIEF  Meri-Jo Borzilleri ART DIRECTOR  Dean Davidson STAFF WRITERS/PHOTOGRAPHERS Kate Galambos | Sarah Sibley | Catherine Torres

ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Kristy Gessner | Kelly Travers | Babette Vickers



CONTRIBUTORS Alan Ayers | Lisa Crosier | Patricia Herlevi Ken Karlberg | Cheryl Jason | Pat McDonnell Laurie Mullarky | Ken Rea | Neal Tognazzini

Outstanding Customer Service “ My experience at Northwest Honda was a great one! They showed me cars in the price range, make and model I requested, no pressure at all to look at anything else. Wonderful sales people, everyone was very professional and super friendly. Why would I go anywhere else after my experience today!!” Mahalo plenty.. Sterling and Sam

WRITER Kaity Teer

EDITORIAL ASSISTANTS Harrison Amelang | McKenna Cardwell Joshua DeJong | Melissa McCarthy | Katie Meier Jade Thurston | Eric Trent



Explore the Civic Family

Featuring a dramatically redesigned exterior and packed

with new technology, the all-new 2017 Civic Sedan is

leading the charge for the next generation. Visit our showroom to see which Civic fits your life and your style.

2010 Iowa Street Bellingham, WA 360.676.2277 | 10

MARKETING ASSISTANT Kenji Guttorp | Max Herzog | Lydia McClaran

CORPORATE OFFICE K & L Media, Inc. 432 W. Bakerview Road, Suite 101 Bellingham, WA 98226


COVER IMAGE Smoked Apple Martini from 13moons Restaurant. Photographed by Pat McDonnell.

Letters to the Editor


Suicide Leaves Questions, Guilt



tW as

h in

g to

n Fa


C rea Br e a











I w




Suicide prevention is so important in the environment we are living in right now. I found Ken Karlberg’s Final Word spot-on as we deal with this topic on a national level. Recently my family had to deal with the loss of one of its members and it strikes to the core of your being. Could I have done something? Were there signs? As Ken states, it is never too late to keep your eyes open and hand out for a friend or loved one that is struggling. Thank you for addressing this heartbreaking topic. Jesse M., Friday Harbor

Bellingham Alive welcomes comments and feedback for our Letters to the Editor section. We’d love to hear what you have to say and are open to story ideas about the people, places, and happenings in the North Sound (Whatcom, Skagit, San Juan counties). Let us know what you like, and what you’d like to see in the magazine! Contact editor Meri-Jo Borzilleri at

Fair, Ice Cream Melt Heart Another great issue. The cover made me want to get an ice cream! I loved your article on the Northwest Washington Fair. I have been going since I was a child and loved seeing it in the pages of Bellingham Alive.

Ice Cream Trucks a Kids’ Dream I just received my copy of Bellingham Alive and love the cover and feature article all about ice cream! I was so disappointed, though, to see that you overlooked Sugar Shack Ice Cream. They’ve been around in Whatcom County for 14 years, making children in all neighborhoods scream with excitement when they hear the sound of the music coming out of either one of their two beautiful trucks! I recommend that you look them up and feature them in the future! They are an important feature of summertime in Whatcom County! Debi S., Blaine

Leana K., Lynden

As the largest furniture store in Northwest Washington, we offer the best brands at the best prices. Ready to add some flare to your home? Ask about our in-home design service, complimentary with qualifying purchase. 1904 MAIN ST. FERNDALE, WA 98248 • 360.384.3388 SAMUELSFURNITURE.COM



of the



BEST of the



of the









Voted Best Place To Buy Furniture

September 2018 11

NOTES Meet the Staffer Every issue we introduce you to a staff member at Bellingham Alive.

What is your role at the magazine and how long have you been with K & L Media? I’m currently working as the summer design intern. I’ve been here a little over a month now, helping out with the fun stuff — layout, color palettes, fonts. You name it.

What is your background? I’m an art lover through and through. It started early on with my mom being a big influence on my creative outlook. With her as my biggest fan, our household fridge quickly became an art exhibition for my latest and greatest projects. Though finger painting has its own unique charm, the digital world has always been my preferred route. It’s extremely efficient. With this in mind, the design program at Western Washington University was seemingly tailor-made for me.

Alicia Prozinski

What is your favorite part of working for a regional lifestyle magazine? It’s an interesting feeling knowing that your work is a part of someone’s day. If anything, I could only hope that what I’m creating is having a positive influence. You’re picking up our magazine to possibly escape your daily routine — even if just for a minute — and that’s an honor in itself.

What are some of your hobbies? I like to dabble in all the arts. While design is my focus of study, I still have a passion for writing, photography, and reading. When I’m not working on my designs, you can usually find me writing, out taking photos or curled up on the couch reading a good book. 


Field of Fun for the kids

Friday, Sept. 21

Downtown Bellingham & Squalicum Harbor


Enjoy Traditional Lummi Nation Firepit Salmon

Saturday, Sept. 22 Zuanich Point Park & Squalicum Harbor


SeaFeed at the Harbor Taste the Sea Seafood Samples Oyster Shuck & Slurp Contest Food Trucks

rvival Watch Su s Suit Race


FisherPoets U.S. Coast Guard Rescue Meet Your Fisherman Harbor Rides & Tours Boat Tours


Live Music Selected Maritime Artists SeaFeast Wharf Brews-with-a-View Beer Garden Kids Field of Fun


Cerise Noah Realtor® | Windermere-Whatcom 360.393.5826

Your Relocation Sp ecialist Realtor of the Year 2016 Whatcom County Association of Realtors – 2015 President

Historic Hospitality

35 Luxury Rooms / Meeting Room / Shopping & Dining 360-746-8597 • • 100 5th Street

Apple-y Ever After Nothing says fall in Washington like a perfectly ripe, crispy apple. We wait all year for the coveted apple harvest to take over our region and fill our produce department with the local bounty. No matter how you slice them— whether in a freshly baked pie or cooked in cider—apples are a cornerstone of the season.

Sign up online for our weekly flyer emails and other special offers! Haggen Food & Pharmacy • See website for store hours • Barkley Village • Sehome Village • Meridian & Illinois • Fairhaven • Ferndale

©2018 Haggen 180726-06

LIFESTYLE In The Know · Spotlight Artist · Community · 5 Faves

Vibrant Mount Vernon: Not Just for Tulips Any More New Park, Floodwall Help Turn Around City’s Downtown WRITTEN BY PATRICIA HERLEVI | PHOTOS COURTESY OF MOUNT VERNON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


emories of Mount Vernon typically revolve around its eye-catching tulip fields and the river that divides the city in half. Perhaps the most memorable image for many visitors is the 90-foot-high tulip tower that borders Interstate 5. Eight years ago, a handful of passionate civic leaders envisioned downtown Mount Vernon as a go-to community. At the time, Mount Vernon’s high unemployment, vacant buildings, flood threats, and crime tarnished the city’s otherwise friendly reputation. … continued on page 18

LIFESTYLE By the Numbers


Height in feet of revitalized downtown Mount Vernon high smokestack painted with tulips. p. 15

6 Million

Numbers of people, mostly aged 18 to 34, who started gardens in 2016, p. 30


Days it takes for skin cells of youngsters to rejuvenate, p. 39

50,000+ Pizzas Russ Kendall figures he has cooked up for Gusto Wood Fired Pizza since 2011 in Bellingham. p. 65

4 WECU.COM | 800-525-8703 Federally insured by NCUA


Square windows expanded to open up the Beach Drive remodel’s living area, p. 74

Lasting Image


“This shot caught me so by surprise. I was actually making my way out of the area when I noticed that a few of the orca start moving in same direction I was leaving. It was a foggy day and we were in the Strait of Juan de Fuca near Middle Bank. I missed his first breach but grabbed my camera and was ready for the second breach. This beautiful creature is a male transient or Biggs orca that is considered a ‘sprouter.’ He was born in 2005 and reaches adulthood at age 20, so he is a teenager.” KEN REA

© Ken Rea


With this issue, we’re returning to locally generated photographs for our Lasting Image feature, and we want to see what you’ve got. We’re looking for local nature photographs, ones that freeze a moment, tell a story, evoke an emotion. We’ll run your photo here, along with your name, where you’re from, and where the photo was shot. The photo must be high resolution (300 dpi). Send to Then sit back and enjoy the view.

September 2018 17

… Today, there’s more blossoming than the annual tulips. A new Skagit Riverwalk Park spans a quarter of a mile alongside the Skagit River, with a Tulip Dance Sculpture and a permanent downtown floodwall that is helping turn the tide on Mount Vernon’s history of flooded streets. The city features a farmers market on Saturdays through October, and weekly concerts in the summer. On nearby First Street, local history dovetails with modern lifestyles. The old-school quilt shop, Calico Creations, and the Lincoln Theater and other perennials remain, while new businesses such as the Perry and Carlson Gallery, Shambala Bakery & Bistro Restaurant, Valley Shine Distillery, Forte Artisan Chocolates, Ryann Michele clothing boutique and 15 other new businesses contribute to a vibrant downtown core. Visitors and residents alike can spend the day shopping, checking out the day spas or grabbing a bite to eat. Located along the I-5 corridor between Seattle and Vancouver, Mount Vernon (population 31,104) was settled in the late 1800s and became the county seat of Skagit County. The city is perhaps best known for its vast swaths of tulips and daffodils that draw thousands of visitors to a festival each April. It boasts renovated historic buildings such as the award-winning Polson Building at 419 S. First St., which houses several businesses. The city also has alleyways strewn with murals, including “From These Waters” with diverse images of tulip fields and famous immigrants (420 S. First St.). Foodies will find a plethora of watering holes and eateries that appeal to discriminating taste buds. Mayor Jill Boudreau, along with the Mount Vernon Downtown Association, city planners, the Mount Vernon Chamber of Commerce, and entrepreneurs, deserve 18

much of the credit for transforming this quaint farming community into a city where people live, work and play. This includes artist Trina Perry and architect-artist Christian Carlson, partners who bought and transformed the Brunet Building into an art gallery, retail shop and an upstairs living space. The couple has set up their home and business on First Street while also diving into community development. “The improvements that the city has made to the Riverwalk and the new flood wall brought about new investment and businesses in the historic downtown. The farmers market is vibrant and the Skagit Valley, which is on many people’s radar, is seeing a lot of growth,” says Perry. Under Boudreau, the city attracted designers and entrepreneurs who share the vision presented in the city’s master plan drawn up in 2006. And there’s still more to come, according to the mayor, such as 200 to 300 homes, a new hotel and the redevelopment of the area south of Kincaid Street. Longtime downtown businesses are also part of the upgrade. The Skagit Valley Food Co-op bought C-Square building and transformed it into a café and marketplace. Owners of Tri-Dee Arts renovated their art supply and gift store across the street to include classrooms and a familyfriendly glazing shop. Nicole Vander Meulen, marketing director at the Skagit Valley Food Co-op, praises the revitalization effort. “The Riverwalk is a beautiful addition to downtown. It creates a venue for important community events like the local farmers market and summer concert series, making downtown more inviting and lively for locals and visitors alike. The Riverwalk also creates an up-close viewing spectacle to the lifeblood to our beautiful Valley: The Magic Skagit.” 

In The Know

Nonprofit Online College Sees Growth, Growing Pains Western Governors University WRITTEN BY MCKENNA CARDWELL PHOTOS COURTESTY OF WGU WASHINGTON


tudents across the state are trekking to college campuses for the first day of school. But opening a laptop and logging into class is fast becoming a popular alternative. Western Governors University is a national nonprofit online college. The school was founded in 1997 by a group of U.S. governors, including former Washington governor Mike Lowry, who set out to tailor a lower-cost education to students restricted by busy lives. The Washington affiliate, established in 2011 by the state legislature, already has more than 12,000 graduates. More than 10,000 are enrolled for this year including 294 students in Whatcom County. Lindsay McDevitt is a current student at WGU of Washington working on her master’s in nursing. McDevitt enrolled in WGU about a year-and-a-half ago, after transferring from an alternate online university. As a nurse at PeaceHealth St. Joseph Medical Center, a self-employed legal consultant, and a mother, McDevitt says she needed the flexibility an online university provided. “It’s a lot of juggling, but that’s why the online model is so valuable to people like me,” McDevitt says. “I do it when I have the time – an hour here, an hour there. I can’t sign up for a class that meets every day at a certain time because I already have a set work schedule.” This spring, the school named Tonya Drake the new chancellor of WGU of Washington. She is a former vice president at Edmonds Community College. People with families and


careers need flexibility to advance their degrees, Drake says, so the school runs on a competency-based model. This means as soon as a student proves they know the material, they can move on. This design earned the attention of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which has provided grants to WGU, including in 2013 when it granted $1.2 million to launch an associate-degree program in information technology. WGU of Washington recently celebrated its largest graduating class of more than 3,000 in April. The acceleration in student registration, while exciting, also poses challenges. “WGU has grown, and grown quickly,” Drake says. “As a result of that, we are figuring out infrastructure, we are figuring out some of those growing pains.” In September 2017, the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Education issued an audit report determining WGU (accredited by the DOE-approved Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities) wasn’t qualified for federal student-aid programs and should repay more than $700 million to the federal government. The Office of Federal Student Aid (FSA) is still in progress of finishing a final audit determination and declines to comment until it’s completed, the department’s press office says in an email. “We are still in wait-and-see mode,” Drake says, “but we expect those findings to be positive. We feel like we have been in compliance the entire time.” The audit stated WGU’s innovative teaching model failed to provide “regular and substantive” interaction between students and faculty. Bellingham resident Rhonda Purdy, the vice president of human resources at North Coast Credit Union and graduate of WGU of Washington, says the model was effective for her, particularly the mentors assigned to students. “It’s just very encouraging to have someone to check in with you every few weeks,” Purdy says. “You’re more likely to want to get more done so you can tell them about it.” WGU offers nursing, education, business, and information technology colleges, along with an attractive price tag. Attending WGU for one term (six months) will cost a student about $6,000.  September 2018 19


Homeless Youths Getting a Place of Their Own Northwest Youth Services WRITTEN BY KATIE MEIER | PHOTOGRAPHED BY JENN DALY


resh out of high school, the pressure is on for young homeless teens to find a job, housing, food, and medical care. Now, a non-profit Bellingham social services agency is zeroing in on the problem. Northwest Youth Services is reaching out with a growing number of services, like help finding a job, connection to mental health services, support for LGBTQ youth, street outreach, and other services for young people between 13 and 24 years old. It is also working to complete a 40-unit low-cost apartment complex in downtown Bellingham. The complex is a collaboration with another Whatcom Countybased non-profit, Opportunity Council, with the two agencies splitting the complex in half. Twenty units are reserved for Northwest Youth Services clients aged 18 to 24 and 20 units reserved for Opportunity Council clients. The project is located at 1022 N. State St. and is known as 22 North. The idea was originally conceived 15 years ago and was brought to reality by Riannon Bardsley, the current executive director of Northwest Youth Services, her associates, and supporters. The five-story building now under construction “is going to provide hope to community members that don’t currently have it,” Bardsley says. “It’s going to be a lot of cost savings to our systems, like our emergency department and police,


because we will have people who are currently living in crisis be stable once they are living inside.” The building will offer case management, vocational services, behavioral health support, and 24-hour support staff and security on site. In all it will cost about $11 million. The money has come from a variety of sources, including federal tax credits, the Washington State Housing Trust Fund, the Bellingham housing levy, state capital budget, and finally Northwest Youth Services, which conducted a capital campaign that raised $780,000. The project is expected to be completed in mid-October and already has a wait list of more than 100 young adults hoping for housing of some kind. Those given an apartment will be selected by a vulnerability assessment that looks at time spent outside and other factors that will determine their risk of dying due to various factors related to homelessness. “It’s important to house young people because they have so much potential and they are creative and feisty and brilliant and they deserve the opportunity to thrive like all the other young people in our community,” Bardsley says. 22 North will go a long way towards Northwest Youth Services achieving their ultimate goal: being able to house all young people who seek it in Whatcom County, but there is still a lot to be done and many things standing in their way. “Ending homelessness is going to require a lot of culture change and system improvements that Northwest Youth Services does not have the capacity to do and it’s not within our mission to work on all of that,” Bardsley says. “No non-profit organization can end homelessness alone and we absolutely need people to participate in advocacy, or volunteer, or investing financial resources.”  1020 N. State St., Bellingham 360.734.9862 |

Shedding Light on the Value of Recreation Todd Elsworth WRITTEN AND PHOTOGRAPHED BY KATE GALAMBOS

Game Changer



odd Elsworth has left Bellingham just to come back again. The Pacific Northwest native fell in love with the area for the same reasons many of us do: the sense of community between people, the geography and the endless places to “play” outdoors, he says. “People who live here live here intentionally,” Elsworth says. As founder of the multi-event relay Bellingham Traverse and co-executive director and founder of Recreation Northwest, Elsworth has built his passion for outdoor recreation into a career. Elsworth began the Bellingham Traverse race in 2002 after returning home from six years in New Hampshire. During his time on the East Coast, he turned his career away from his original plan of history teacher and toward marketing and event coordinating. For Elsworth, the race filled a void and fostered a connection. “It’s really about what was missing in my life, which was a connection to my community,” Elsworth said. This year marks the 16th year of the race, which now benefits Elsworth’s Recreation Northwest nonprofit. The 2017 event drew nearly 500 racers for the six-leg, 37.15 mile race. Participants can choose to do the course alone, with a partner, or on a team. For most, it’s a relay event. Legs include a park greenways run, mountain bike, road bike, trail run, then kayak paddle, all designed to honor the life journey of the salmon — except for the final segment, where each team’s members gather to race the final .65 mile to the finish at Boundary Bay Brewery. The 2018 race will take place Saturday, September 15th. In addition to the Bellingham Traverse, Recreation Northwest coordinates projects to engage people in local stewardship and education regarding the economic and social benefits of recreation. Elsworth’s business philosophy is based on the “triple bottom line” accounting framework, which takes into consideration profit, planet, and people to determine the success of an organization rather than solely profit. While Recreation Northwest began as primarily a “race-based” organization to run the traverse, the company developed a mission to “promote outdoor recreation and bring people together to enjoy, preserve and improve the places where we play.” With this mission, Recreation Northwest expanded its programs, Elsworth says. The nonprofit also organizes networking events for businesses and individuals in the recreation community and engages citizens with the stewardship of Fairhaven Park, where Elsworth’s group is responsible for adding to the trail network there. Elsworth’s personal favorite ways to recreate include cycling, both mountain and road (“It’s my transportation and recreation,” he says), sea kayaking, backcountry skiing, and camping. “Hopefully the biggest game I have changed is the understanding of the value that recreation has for our community,” he said.  Recreation Northwest 1319 Commercial St., Bellingham September 2018 21


(Electric) Pedal Power My first time riding an e-bike WRITTEN BY MELISSA MCCARTHY PHOTOGRAPHED BY JADE THURSTON


ou never forget how to ride a bike. That first time behind the handlebars sets you up for a lifetime of cycling. The power behind your pedals, the speed of travel previously unattainable on foot, the glide of the wheels — it’s unforgettable. I was able to relive this experience recently with my first time astride an electric bike, or e-bike. Although I’ve known how to ride since about six years old, the e-bike opened my eyes to new ways of travel, just as my first time atop a bicycle did. The e-bike I tested was a Lift Lowstep from Trek Bicycle in Bellingham. It was priced at about $2,300 and reached speeds of up to 20 mph. It is available for test drive at the shop, along with a number of other models. The salesperson informed me it contains a pedal-assist motor, which you can activate at varying levels to enhance your biking abilities. Initially, I didn’t turn on the assist and rode it as a normal bike through the streets of downtown Bellingham. But when I approached the first hill, I used the buttons on my handlebar to shift it into high speed. How easily that hill was conquered! I imagined all the previously debilitating bike routes that would become possible, the ease of my commutes, no longer being drenched in sweat after rides. This bike is a game-changer. The U.S. market is beginning to catch on. Last year, the number of e-bikes doubled in North America. People in cities are opting out of expensive cars that get stuck in traffic and require parking, and instead are using e-bikes. Although it’s met with some opposition from dedicated riders (it is, after all, a form of cheating), the e-bike makes biking more accessible for many and replaces more cars on the street, making streets safer (and more environmentally sound) for everyone. You never forget how to ride a bike, and if you give one a try, I doubt you’ll be able to forget riding an e-bike.  Trek Bicycle Bellingham 100 E. Chestnut St. Bellingham 360.733.6440 | 22

Book Reviews


The Word is Murder by Anthony Horowitz 400 pages Harper

A woman visits a funeral home to plan her own memorial, and is then found strangled just six hours later. A deliciously clever cast of suspects abound as we see the latest crime-solving duo created by Anthony Horowitz, creator of Foyle’s War on the BBC as well as a bestselling novelist. This is the start of a new series for Horowitz, which combines a crusty, socially inept yet brilliant London ex-cop named Hawthorne with character Anthony Horowitz (yes, one and the same.) These two are hilarious, canny, and ultimately completely ingenious as we watch the mystery unfold. As with any British caper, red herrings are rife in the scenery, and Horowitz uses his own bungling to mirror the reader’s confusion as to whodunnit. Another five-star mystery, it is a “can’t miss” as we head into fall reading season.

Rocket Men: The Daring Odyssey of Apollo 8 and the Astronauts Who Made Man’s First Journey to the Moon by Robert Kurson 384 pages Random House

As a child of the 60s, I was fascinated, along with the rest of the country, with astronauts, the moon, and those humongous rockets out of Cape Canaveral. This new book on the historic first orbit of the moon is a wonderful walk down a lot of memory lanes, but it is also an outstanding reminder of what hope, determination, and plain ol’ hard work can accomplish. Author Robert Kurson does an admirable research job, filling his book with intriguing facts about NASA; the backstories of the three astronauts — one of them current Anacortes resident Bill Anders; and the tumultuous state of America in 1968. It’s an inspiring story of what three men did for our country on that Christmas Eve: They raised our spirits, gave us belief in the future, and reminded us about the goodness of America.

In the Know


September 11–13 Books A’Sail Cruise Reading Adventure Schooner Zodiac 355 Harris Ave., Bellingham 206.719.7622, Paul Hanson and Kelly Evert of Village Books join local author Thor Hanson for the third installment of the sailing book club. Before you climb aboard, make sure to get your hands on one of Hanson’s books, “Feathers,” as well as “Mink River” by Brian Doyle and “Wind” by Jan DeBlieu. Pack a bag and spend three days at sea reading and discussing while making your way through the San Juan Islands.

September 26–29 Friends of the Library Book Sale Bellingham Public Library 210 Central Ave., Bellingham 360.778.7323 Peruse tables piled with books to add to your collection. Thousands of used books will go on sale, many for $1. All proceeds go to the Bellingham Public Library.

Who Knew? Early Careers School Days Before the Grammy Awardwinning artist became the lead singer of the Police or launched his solo music career, Sting was known simply as Gordon Sumner. After receiving his teaching degree, Sumner went on to spend the next two years teaching English and music in England before joining the Police and becoming an international rock star.

A Model Life Martha Stewart didn’t start her career behind the kitchen counter. You may know Stewart spent some time as a stockbroker, but did you know she also spent some time as a model, starting at age 15? Appearing in TV commercials and magazine ads helped pay for her college education. She continued to model while studying art, history and architectural history.

Life Before Mickey It’s difficult to believe that the man who created Mickey Mouse was fired from his cartooning job. Before his lovable animations came to life, Walt Disney worked for PesmanRubin Commercial Art Studio. His work consisted of designing advertisements for newspapers and magazines. He was let go for “not being creative enough.”

Out of the Lion’s Den Much like the underdog story of boxer Rocky Balboa, Sylvester Stallone faced trials and hardship early. An accident at birth severed a nerve and left him with a droopy eye and slurred speech. His parents had a hostile marriage. While trying to make it as an actor, Stallone cleaned the lions cage in Central Park Zoo and was a movie usher. — McKenna Cardwell

September 2018 23

Community the Spotlight LIFESTYLE In

The Summit Conqueror Tells All A Trek with Bellingham’s Dave Mauro And His New Book WRITTEN BY KATE GALAMBOS PHOTOGRAPHY COURTESY OF DAVE MAURO


ou might consider David J. Mauro a modern-day superhero. Weekdays, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Dave can be found at his UBS Financial Services Inc. office in Bellingham wearing the title of senior vice president, wealth management. Catch him after hours, however, and you may find him summiting the world’s tallest mountain peaks or talking about his latest trek. He has his very own super suit with crampons on his feet, a harness around his waist, and an ice axe in his hand. Then there’s that large tattoo on his calf. It outlines the seven summits — the world’s tallest peaks — that Mauro spent seven years of his life conquering. Now, five years after climbing his final peak, Mount Everest, Mauro, 55, has written a book, “The Altitude Journals: A Seven-Year Journey from the Lowest Point in My Life to the Highest Point on Earth.” It recounts his story of the emotional and physical struggles reaching the highest point on each continent. “I still don’t consider myself a mountain climber. I consider myself a seeker,” says Mauro, who experienced his “lowest 24

point” at age 44, when he found himself living in his sister’s guest room, despondent over the death of his brother and the failure of his marriage. A relative sent him a birthday gift — a pair of climbing poles. Mauro has been seeking summits since 1993 when he and a few of his friends reached the top of Mount Baker. After an uninspiring trip to the top, Mauro said he couldn’t understand why people climb and considered himself retired from climbing. “I had no idea what was supposed to be fun about it,” he said. Fast forward to 2006, and Mauro had his sights set on North America’s tallest mountain, Denali in Alaska (also known as Mount McKinley). It peaks at more than 20,000 feet above sea level. The move from “retired” to climbing one of the deadliest peaks in the world was prompted by his brother-in-law Ty Hardt. Hardt, an Anchorage-based filmmaker and climber, was planning to climb Denali and make a documentary in the process. Mauro played the novice climber and he summited Denali on June 13, 2007. After that, he no longer considered himself retired from climbing.

In The Know


Chuckanut Bay Distillery Is Making a Big Move

Rundogo Tappy Taps s.r.o.


M After Denali, Mauro kept having dreams of the enchanting African plains. He knew what was next — Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania — the highest mountain on the African continent. From then on, Mauro made it his mission to conquer the remaining tallest peaks on each of the seven continents: Mounts Elbrus in Russia, Aconcagua in Argentina, Carstensz Pyramid in Indonesia, Mount Vinson in Antarctica, and on May 20, 2013, Mount Everest. Today, life after the climbs has yet to slow down. He led a March 31 hike up Blanchard Mountain’s Oyster Dome to fundraise for Binaytara Foundation, a Bellingham cancer health nonprofit. His new book, “The Altitude Journals,” will take him on a two-year speaking tour in partnership with outdoor retailer REI. Mauro will speak at every REI store in North America about his experiences. Mauro hopes the book, an Amazon No. 1 best-seller in the “Outdoor Adventure” category, inspires people to climb their own mountains. “Everyone has a Mount Everest, but every big mountain is just a bunch of little mountains,” he said. In addition to spreading his words of wisdom, Mauro tries to lead climbs up at least one big mountain a year. Since his altitude climbs, he has conquered Mount Rainier and Mount Baker (again). No matter what the challenge, physical or mental, Mauro recommends the advice that got him through his summits: “Just 10 steps at a time.” 


att Howell and Kelly Andrews released their first craft liquor in 2013 as Chuckanut Bay Distillery, a potato vodka made with Skagit Valley Yukon Gold potatoes. In the five years since, the distillery has made a name for itself, winning awards like the Seattle International Spirits Award, New York International Spirits Competition, and Micro Liquor Spirits Award. Now the business is ready for a space that matches its titles. By September, Chuckanut Bay Distillery is expected to finish construction on its new location at 1309 Cornwall Ave. in downtown Bellingham. It will move from its current location in the alley behind Railroad Avenue to a space more than six times larger. The distillery’s new location will offer 18,000 square feet and three stories of space for distilling, events, tasting and a full restaurant in the historic 1905 building. The historic building is most remembered as the home of J.C. Penney in the 1950s, but has worn many hats in the last 113 years. To bring the space into modern day, the owners imagine the added room will host corporate events and weddings, with the third-floor event room able to house up to 400 people. The restaurant will offer local fare and cocktails featuring spirits made just yards away. A combination of old-world charm and clean, modern design will make the new Chuckanut Bay Distillery location a hub in Bellingham’s downtown.  1309 Cornwall Ave., Bellingham 360.738.7179 |

Keep track of your own workouts and your dog’s too! In contrast to other GPSbased fitness apps, Rundogo allows you to keep track of both your health and your best friend’s. Rundogo also allows you to record different results for different dogs.

Calm When it comes to meditation, it can be a challenge learning to sit still and silent. This is especially true if you’re not sure what it is you’re meditating for. With Calm, you begin your meditative journey by selecting a meditative goal, such as increased focus or decreased anxiety. From there, you can pick from a vast, high-quality array of sleep stories and meditative playlists.

Musixmatch Musixmatch Ever listen to a song and can’t understand the lyrics? This app pulls up the lyrics for the current song you’re playing and can translate them for you (and in up to 60 different languages). Musixmatch also picks up background music and tells you the name of the song that’s playing.

Music Equalizer – Bass Booster and Volume Booster KUCAPP Music equalizer apps tend to be hit or miss. Music Equalizer by KUCAPP is the exception. The app is equipped with a selection of music presets, a bass booster and a sound virtualization option. These features are all standard for an equalizer, but KUCAPP’s Music Equalizer is above the competition with its superior audio quality. — Max Herzog

September 2018 25


Five Faves


CHAIN LAKES LOOP Covered in snow most of the year, the trek on this North Cascades trail at the end of Mount Baker Highway is spectacular in fall — the perfect time for hikers to enjoy the natural beauty without snowshoes. Blooming heather adds splashes of vibrant purple next to the clear blue alpine lakes. While Chain Lakes Loop Trail is long, it’s relatively lowimpact and lovely views of Baker and Table Mountain can be enjoyed throughout. Length: 8.0 miles roundtrip Parking Fee: Northwest Forest Pass North Cascades, Mount Baker Area |




SOUTH BAKER LAKE Crossing wooden bridges or hopping across riverbeds can draw a youthful explorer from anyone. This trail, near Concrete, is wellkept and enclosed in a forest green canopy. A creek will cut through the trees, revealing scenic Baker Lake — a great spot for lunch. Length: 8.0 miles roundtrip Parking Fee: Northwest Forest Pass North Cascades, Mount Baker


CHANTERELLE A relatively new addition to the hikes sprinkled throughout Lake Whatcom Park. A short drive from downtown Bellingham, the trail is shrouded in picturesque foliage. Wildlife is abundant, so keep your eyes peeled on your way to the lookout. Length: 4.8 roundtrip Parking Fee: None Lake Whatcom Park, Bellingham


MOUNT CONSTITUTION LOOP Forget endless love. How about endless views? A challenging hike to the peak of Orcas Island is worthwhile, thanks to the expansive panorama awaiting you. Allow your breath to be taken away by the sight of the other San Juans, Bellingham Bay, and Mount Baker. Length: 6.7 miles roundtrip Parking Fee: Discover Pass Orcas Island |


WHISTLE LAKE In the summertime, Whistle Lake in Anacortes is active with locals aching to escape the heat. But once school starts up, the area grows quiet. Bright green leaves transform into autumn classics and sometimes a mist hangs over the still water. It’s like getting lost in the woods — in the best way possible. Length: 4.0 miles roundtrip Parking Fee: None Anacortes, Puget Sound | September 2018 27


ENTERTAINMENT Need help planning your weekend? Sign up to receive weekly entertainment blast for events, reviews, and fun at

We are dedicated to giving you the most professional, pleasant and convenient experience. 360.312.6036 1204 Iowa Street Bellingham, WA

Mon – Fri: 8 am – 8 pm Saturday: 8 am – 7 pm Sunday: 9 am–5 pm


Savvy Shopper · Necessities · Around the Sound



he unassuming glass door of Babygreens separates the industrial feel of downtown Bellingham from the magic behind it. In this indoor plant shop, fiddle-leaf fig trees tower over Swiss cheese palm plants. Sunlight filters in through large windows, hitting the heartleaf philodendron hanging from the ceiling. Small … continued on next page

… succulents line the shelves as larger snake plants rest on the floor. It is like stepping into another world. Founder, owner, and Western Washington University graduate Nick Meza opened the shop in April and envisioned a space that was creative and comfortable from the beginning. He planned every detail, even down to the long leather couch resting against the back wall and the large colorful artwork showcased above the cash register. The attention to detail seems to be paying off. The Instagram account dedicated to the plant shop already has more than 4,000 followers after being open only six months. Instagram is one of the main marketing tools Meza uses. “Plants are very photogenic and there is a lot of opportunity for cool photography,” Meza says. “The big selling point for a lot of people with plants is the design of them and how they look. There’s a lot of opportunity to market creatively in a very aesthetically pleasing and fresh way with photography and plants. It just works really naturally.” Indoor plants have become increasingly popular since 2016. Data collected in the 2016 National Gardening Report found that 6 million people started gardening that year 30

and the vast majority of them were aged 18 to 34. Most of Meza’s customers fall between 20 to 30 years old, which he attributes to the large social media presence of the store and the popularity of indoor plants. “It’s a very multi-dimensional thing” with everything from their appearance to their use in interior design. “Stylistically they’ve become really popular,” Meza says. “But I think the other half is there’s a growing appreciation for nature and for being around plants. People are learning more about the benefits they provide and how they clean the air and how you can connect in a space that is full of life.” The best-selling plants in the shop are small succulents, cacti, and hanging plants, but it depends on customer needs. Finding the right plant for the right environment is the key to success. “Plants create really nice energy,” Meza says. “It’s something that you can tend to and mindfully care for, watch grow, and you can take care of it and that’s really rewarding.”  1201 Cornwall Ave., Bellingham 425.286.4412 |

228 N. Samish Way

218 N. Samish Way






8am-11:45pm This product has intoxicating efects and may be habit forming. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the infuence of this drug. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Keep out of reach of children.

SHOP Necessities



Modern Farmhouse Industrial Bar Cart in Grey $129.99

Pendleton Yakima Camp Blanket, $139.00

3 Early Fall Outdoor Entertaining Here in the Pacific Northwest, we are lucky that summer (usually) likes to stick around until late September. The warm temperatures provide plenty of opportunity to host al fresco dinners and cocktail parties. So, gather the neighbors and take advantage of the last delightful days on your deck with these outdoor entertaining items. — Sarah Sibley


The New Cocktail Hour: The Essential Guide to Hand-Crafted Drinks, $22

5 32

Bicycle Wine Glass Ideal,, $12 each

24 ft. 12-Light Filament LED String Light, $39.98

Local Find


Second Hand for New Moms and Kiddos Flip, Little Bugs Offer Big Ideas in Bellingham WRITTEN AND PHOGRAPHED BY HARRISON AMELANG


f you had told Elyse Brown three years ago that she would own two businesses by the time she was 23, she would have probably laughed. Now, she owns Flip and Little Bugs, two children and maternity consignment stores in Bellingham. Owning two of the three maternity consignment shops in Bellingham keeps Brown busy. Hundreds of items cross her counters each day, but those numbers will grow when school season comes around. Unlike larger thrift establishments, Brown has limited space to store items before they’re


put on sale, which means she must sell items nearly as fast as she gets them. This is no easy task, especially in a building like the one where Flip is located. Sitting near the York district in Bellingham, Flip was converted from a large house, and the layout feels very homey (literally). Small rooms and an upstairs are separated by style, clothes type, age, and gender. Customers feel like they are walking through a cozy,

organized rummage sale that offers anything a young family or kiddo may need. Little Bugs is more traditionally laid out, with large circular racks full of colorful jackets, jeans, and pajamas dotting the wood floor. Blouses, t-shirts, tiny dresses, and shorts hang neatly on long rods that run the length of the lime-green wall. One of the more adorable features of both shops are the hundreds of tiny shoes (Baby Converse go for $3.99), lined on shelves nearly to the ceiling. Check out the Dog Jammies ($8.99) and Flower Blouse ($4.99). Brown does all the pricing, organization, and management herself, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. Being in the store allows her to enjoy her favorite part of the business: her intimate relationship with her customers. “My favorite part of this job is seeing families grow. I get to hear about babies one and two and see how excited mom is when she tells me number three is on the way,” she says.  Flip 1512 Ellis St., Bellingham 360.671.0954 |

Little Bugs

Little Bugs 2400 Yew St., Bellingham 360.756.0507

September 2018 33

SHOP Savvy Shopper

Showcasing Jewels of Orcas Island Material Wit WRITTEN AND PHOTOGRAPHED BY SARAH SIBLEY

123 N. Beach Rd., Eastsound 34

THE SHOP The landscape of Orcas Island is full of places to stop and gaze at its beauty. Material Wit is certainly one of these stops. It’s a destination shop that showcases four jewelry collections by owner Jessie Morrow and lifestyle products collected from years of involvement and networking with fellow makers.

as an organic farmer, she also had what she calls a “side hustle” making jewelry and selling it at local markets and maker shows. She’s a self-taught jewelry designer, creating pieces she liked that weren’t available in jewelry stores. Initially, she repurposed hardware parts into designs. It’s glamorous with a gritty aesthetic.



Wandering around in Material Wit is a feast for the senses. Clean, white walls and a dark gray concrete floor, along with artfully stocked shelves and tables, allow the jewelry and other products to be the main attraction. The interior is reflective of the Scandinavian minimalist aesthetic that has heavily influenced Morrow. She displays a few of her jewelry pieces in small piles of sand on a table to emphasize the relation to its natural surroundings. On a recent trip to the island I spent some time ooohing and aaaahing and happily left with a candle, tinted lip balm, and a necklace from Morrow’s Mechanism collection.

Morrow has created four different jewelry collections, all available in her store. The topography of the island, sense of place, and how the land meets the ocean are dynamics that inspire her creative process, but she allows herself to be inspired by everything. The Hiyu collection is inspired by the juxtaposition between the industry of the city and island life. The Found collection represents the beautiful forms that nature can create, like the hand-forged brass and sterling silver Shoreline necklace ($70). Mechanism is created from hardware pieces like the modern industrial earrings ($28), made with repurposed brass and steel. Signature is her line of clean, minimalist creations. Morrow has carefully curated her store with clothes, candles, housewares, and art she’s found mostly by bringing in Americanmade items from artisans like herself. 

KEY PEOPLE Jessie Morrow has a degree in ecology and moved to Orcas Island to pursue organic and sustainable farming. Seems like a logical path to jewelry, right? With a full-time job

September 2018 35

WELLBEING Nutrition · Take a Hike · Spa Review · Beauty

The Breakdown on Hair Removal Waxing, Sugaring, Threading WRITTEN BY CHERYL JASON


ith the warm weather that looks like it will be with us for a while, hair removal is a multi-month affair. The more I thought about it, the more I started to wonder about the differences in common hair removal methods. As a beauty professional, I couldn’t just sit — I had to find out, so I did some research. Lasering can be expensive. The three most common hair removal services are waxing, sugaring and threading. Waxing, the most common, is applying hot wax to your skin and then removing the wax with a small strip of cloth. For the process of sugaring, an esthetician uses a sugar-based paste applied to your skin before peeling off the hair. And threading is using a piece of string to remove the hair — this method is most commonly performed on the face. … continued on next page

… WAXING The most common method of hair removal, waxing is available at most beauty salons. The best salons to choose are those that educate clients on the waxing process. Many hair removal customers select the bikini or Brazilian waxing technique, which involves removing hair in the pubic area. Waxing is quick and convenient (and I personally don’t find it that painful), which is why it’s been my usual go-to hair removal method. Do your research — find a place that highlights the important issue of sanitation: spas and salons should abide by strict safe waxing procedures such as keeping hospital grade disinfecting products in each wax room, insisting each skin therapist wears gloves and never doubledipping the wax stick. Hot wax does not kill bacteria, so it is important to choose an establishment that is clean, licensed and strict about sanitation.

SUGARING I’ve only done this once, but I am impressed. This technique involves using, yes, sugar, to remove hair. All hair-removal practices have their pros and cons, but some clients have reported that the sugaring technique was less painful and caused less irritation to the skin. Sugaring doesn’t just remove hair, it also exfoliates the skin. Sugaring leaves the skin smoother and the hair has reportedly 30 percent less breakage than with waxing or threading. Additionally, like with waxing, sanitation should be a priority. Look for a spa or salon that uses a fresh, new sugar ball for each client, eliminating the possibility of crosscontamination. One possible disadvantage is that this technique is difficult to master, so if you’re interested in trying it, do your research and find an experienced studio.

THREADING Threading is considered the most precise in providing the best shape for brows. It’s also one of the least-painful methods, with the sensation similar to that of tweezing several hairs at once. Some therapists prefer threading to waxing because waxing has the potential to burn or irritate the skin while threading requires no products and reduces the likelihood that the skin can become inflamed. Threading doesn’t lift or tear the skin and is safe for people who are taking medications. The possible disadvantages of threading include sneezing and eye-watering, not so much from the pain, but the sensitivity. Another disadvantage is that it can be tough finding someone to provide this service and the technique may leave your skin itchy for a short time afterwards. 





A Younger Glow A Secret to Anti-Aging, Exfoliation Can Help WRITTEN BY LISA CROSIER


s children, our skin cells naturally regenerate very quickly (about every 28 days) leaving our skin with a fresh layer of baby cells. With age, the regeneration of skin cells slows down (about every 45-60 days) leaving us with fine lines, dry areas and an uneven skin texture. In our later years, we can enhance cell regeneration by removing the of top outer layer of dead skin. This is called exfoliation, and there are many product and solutions available ranging from do-it-yourself techniques (scrubs and brushes) to professional treatments (facials and chemical peels) performed by skincare specialists. Exfoliating smooths and loosens dull, rough, dry skin cells — bringing fresh, new cells to the surface. Consistent exfoliation also helps fade age spots, acne and scars; unclogs pores; reduces blemishes; refines fine lines; stimulates collagen and elastin production; and can help prevent sagging skin. It’s important to include the jaw line, neck, chest and hands. People often avoid exfoliating these areas, giving away their age. A popular technique is a facial. Best performed by professionals, these frequently involve a variety of skin care techniques for the face including removal of dead skin, cleansing, moisturizing, hydrating, peeling and addressing dehydration and acne. If you combine daily exfoliation with a monthly professional facial, you will see an amazing transformation. Aging skin is always fighting a slow exfoliation rate and loss of collagen, so scheduling monthly professional skincare treatments and using clinical-grade products is recommended for optimizing skin rejuvenation. It can take time to reverse the neglect of aging skin, but you may be surprised that the skin you desire is right beneath the surface.

Chemical exfoliators dissolve the glue-like substance that holds the dead cells together. You do not scrub to enjoy the benefits. Instead the chemical does the work. Glycolic acid, derived from sugar cane, is a popular solution. Glycolic acid products come in many forms — cleansers, serums, moisturizers and eye creams. They are commonly combined with other acids and it is important that the glycolic concentration be 10 percent or greater for effectiveness. Clinical formulas of sufficient grade are available from a trained skin care professional such as an esthetician. Physical exfoliants include the use of a facial scrub, a facial brush or microdermabrasion treatments. Trained estheticians perform microdermabrasion and this technique is an extremely effective and efficient exfoliant. Diamond microdermabrasion by Dimatome is the current industry leader. It uses a diamond-tipped wand to remove the damaged outer layer of skin, where shallow surface imperfections live, effectively reducing wrinkles, acne and age spots. The procedure is entirely customizable and can be adjusted to offer either a gentle or aggressive approach. It also doesn’t cause heat or inflammation, so it’s safe for clients with sensitive skin. There’s also no downtime, so clients can return to their lives right away with no side effects, making it a true “lunch hour” solution. Corrective professional facials combine both exfoliation techniques to remove the outer layer of dead skin in addition to infusing the skin with powerful serums that hydrate, nourish and treat specific conditions. Exfoliated skin sets the stage for product penetration and maximum absorption of anti-aging ingredients such as retinols, and peptides that boost collagen production that also slows as we age.

HOW SOON WILL I SEE RESULTS? After just a few weeks of daily exfoliating, you’ll notice refreshed skin that appears smoother and brighter. Microdermabrasion delivers noticeable results after your first visit. Your skin will look and feel smoother, immediately. A series of treatments will allow for increased focus on pigmentation, dryness or lines by stepping up the suction or the exfoliation strength of the wand.

ADVICE FROM A LONG-TIME ESTHETICIAN — LOVE THE SKIN YOU ARE IN! I started my career in esthetics when I was 23. As the face of my business and nearing age 50, I do feel pressure to have flawless skin. I practice proper skincare and corrective, antiaging treatments, all the while accepting that as my skin ages it is going to naturally have wrinkles and pigmentation changes. I’ve also noticed that there’s a healthy glow that comes from within. It makes a difference when you have work/play balance, when you participate in activities that bring you joy, and when you spend time with those you love. This creates a glow that comes from within and looks fabulous at any age!  September 2018 39

WELLBEING Special Advertising

referral coordinator to ensure timely authorizations for treatment. Each Cancer Center team member plays an integral role in facilitating journeys to health and well-being.


Taking community cancer care to the next level in Whatcom and Skagit Counties THE FIRST CHAPTER OF INTEGRATED CANCER CARE The PeaceHealth St. Joseph Cancer Center opened its doors in December 2012. The design of the Cancer Center focused on tranquility and hope, surrounding patients and family members with artwork, a water feature and comfortable furnishings to provide a holistic healing environment. But the Cancer Center’s grand opening didn’t just celebrate a beautiful new space; it also marked the beginning of comprehensive cancer services together under one roof — right in our own backyard. Patients were able to see their cancer specialists and receive chemotherapy, radiation therapy and support in a single facility. It marked the beginning of integrated cancer care in northwest Washington.

A NEW CHAPTER OF CANCER CARE Since its inception over five years ago, the Cancer Center has continued to 40

make great strides in improving the quality of patient cancer care in our community. Its original collaborative model remains its solid foundation today as staff caregivers, leadership and a Patient and Family Advisory Committee work together to continually strengthen a program of excellence.

A SKILLED AND GROWING TEAM OF PROVIDERS The Cancer Center recognizes that care providers are at the heart of compassionate cancer care and has grown to serve members of our community with no delay in service. The center has brought three accomplished medical oncologists to Bellingham who are available to care for patients: Dr. Robert Raish, Dr. Scott LeTellier and Dr. Brahma Konda. A fourth oncologist, Dr. Dong Xiang, arrives mid-September, and a new medical oncology physician assistant will come on board in November. Dr. Bill Hall, Dr. Michael Taylor, Dr. Alexei Polishchuk and Dr. Ian Thompson serve as the center’s radiation oncologists. In Sedro-Woolley, patients benefit from the expertise of Dr. Binay Shah, a medical oncologist treating patients who require comprehensive cancer care at the PeaceHealth United General Cancer Center. The team has recently grown with the addition of two new oncology registered nurse (RN) care coordinators to enhance follow-up processes, a licensed practical nurse (LPN) to assist with chemotherapy and infusion scheduling and an additional

The Cancer Center is also committed to offering the most advanced technology available — most notably of which is a new six-degree radiation treatment couch. Funded by the PeaceHealth St. Joseph Medical Center Foundation, it improves patient care by offering improved precision, increased efficiency, reduced patient radiation dose and enhanced overall patient experience and safety.

A CONTINUED COMMITMENT TO INDIVIDUALIZED CARE The Cancer Center focuses on integrating all key services together with the patient at the epicenter of it all. “Patients have access to a comprehensive diagnostic and therapeutic oncology services. They can choose the care that’s best for their individual situation,” said Gurpreet Dhillon, Cancer Center director. “Our team works to guide patients and their families through the cancer experience every step of the way.” Patients’ treatment plans are uniquely tailored to meet their specific needs and use a holistic approach. They may include clinical trials, advanced diagnostic testing or genetic testing and support services, such as nutrition guidance, support groups and financial advocacy. Multidisciplinary case conferences of teams of specialists are also utilized to determine the best treatment approach for a specific patient.

MOVING FORWARD As the PeaceHealth St. Joseph Cancer Center reflects on its first five years, it prepares for the future and continues evolving to meet the changing needs of our community. Many positive changes are taking place, building upon its sturdy roots. 

Let’s beat cancer together. Cancer touches all – not just cancer patients but their loved ones too. Know that during times of need, PeaceHealth St. Joseph Cancer Center is here for you and your family and friends. Your comprehensive care will be fully supported by our capable staff and managed by our full complement of medical and radiation oncologists in our beautiful healing environment.

Cancer prevention


Advanced detection


Latest treatments


Clinical trials

To schedule a consultation or for more information, call 360-788-8222.

Spirits Infused by Local Ingredients, Craft Cocktails Raise the Bar When it comes to libations, North Sounders’ preference for beer — namely, ales — is well-chronicled. While brew pubs proliferate, the craft cocktail is juicing up happy hours and nighttime social sessions. This is not your grandfather’s scotch and soda. Local ingredients, blends, and liqueurs are in fashion, as are the distilleries, and even the bartenders, that make them. We take a look at what’s new when it comes to drinks in Whatcom, Skagit, and San Juan counties, and the creative and committed people involved who are infusing the industry with color and charisma. Let’s all toast to that.

WRITTEN BY Kate Galambos, Sarah Sibley, Catherine Torres, Lisa Karlberg, Joshua DeJong, & Harrison Amelang PHOTOGRAPHED BY Alan Ayers & Pat McDonnell ILLUSTRATED BY Mariah Currey


Alexine Langdon Hundred North


Langdon’s Favorite Recipe The Dutch Blossom Jenever, Fresh squeezed lime juice, Apricot liqueur, Dry sherry, Spritz of Cardamom bitters

ehind Hundred North’s stylish atmosphere is an artist hard at work, perfecting her craft and charming customers with brilliant beverages that deliver one-of-akind tastes. Bar manager Alexine Langdon has earned a reputation of constructing fun and beautiful drinkable creations, using the cocktail as the canvas to her art. Although Langdon has been behind the bar at Hundred North for only two years, she has assumed the role as confidently as a veteran of the trade. She frequently arrives at the restaurant hours before opening to play with flavors, liqueurs, herbs, and more. To customers’ delight, she aims to produce a new drink every week. Langdon’s arsenal is extensive and mostly home-grown. The large array features spirits from local distilleries like Bellewood Acres. The only ingredients that are not local are any citrus flavors, which are difficult to find in Washington state. “Transitioning to local spirits is a new vision of mine,” Langdon says. “Now that I’ve been a bar manager for a year now, I really want to put my stamp on this bar and how it relates to what the kitchen is putting out, too.” While she tries to come out with a new drink weekly, some creations may take months of planning, taste-testing, and tinkering. Her favorite? The Dutch Blossom. With a jenever base, the drink is tangy, fruity, and a spinoff of Langdon’s favorite summer drink, a gimlet. With her inventive style and eye for innovation, Langdon is making the bar at Hundred North a place to be. “Being creative has been a constant in my life,” Langdon says. “It was a fun transition to go from serving to bartending because it’s a creative, constructive outlet in an industry that I already knew and loved.” H.A.

100 N. Commercial St., Bellingham 360.594.6000,

September 2018 43

More Than ‘Mean’ Martinis Fireside Martini and Wine Bar


ecky and JD Merris opened The Fireside Martini and Wine Bar with a desire to bring a new attention to detail not easily found at the bar top. For Becky, every great cocktail starts with great ice. “Focus on your ice,” she says. Ice should be fresh — as in made today — and there should be plenty of it to preserve the flavor of your cocktail. For JD, high-quality mixers and juices are the first priority. “Juice or mix is usually half or more of the drink, it just makes sense to invest there as well,” he says. Patrons will find an extensive list of craft cocktails, classic favorites, wine, small bites, salads, sandwiches, and of course — great ice. The bar

specializes in martinis, with JD at the forefront of martini craft. JD has been known for his mean martinis since even before the couple opened the place, he said. The drink has since become his favorite to make for both customers and guests, although he cannot deny his Pacific Northwest love of an IPA after a long day at the bar. The Fireside’s warm decor, inviting staff and wide variety of cocktails, make it appropriate for anything from date night to after-work beverages. Happy hour starts at 3 p.m. everyday. See you there. K.G. 416 West Bakerview Rd. Bellingham 360.738.1000,

House Specialty Drink Fireside Vesper

A new take on the classic James Bond martini, The Vesper features New Amsterdam Gin, Tito’s Vodka, Lillet Blanc and a lemon twist.

Best Seat in the House

Sitting at the bar allows you to interact and chat with your neighbor. The corner bar seat could be the best in the house, however, as it allows you to see the entire room.

Best Night to go

Friday night the Fireside offers live music with no cover fee.


Fireside Martini and Wine Bar

Kuma Liqueur

Q&A with Kuma Liqueur owner Chet Holstein III How did Kuma Liqueur get its start? I literally came up with the idea for Kuma three weeks after I left the restaurant world and retail world of spirits. I had been working 80-hour weeks and my mind was constantly flooded with running a restaurant and after leaving that I had a lot of ideas. I woke up to an email I sent myself, all it said was: turmeric liqueur?

Galloway’s bartender Chris Cheesman learned the trade in his hometown Bellingham, then spent several years refining his cocktail skills in Ballard before returning. How did you learn to make drinks? I started as a banquet bartender at Hotel Bellwether. Picture 300 people all lining up at the bar after a wedding at once. It was a great place for a “baby bartender” because I poured a lot of well drinks and learned how to do it quickly.

What is your favorite drink to make?

What is Kuma?

How do you use it?

Kuma [in Ferndale] is the only turmeric liqueur in the world. After sending myself that email, I worked on whipping up a batch and thought of what would pair well with the turmeric. I added black pepper, coriander, dried lemon and grapefruit peel just to kind of round it out. We also use organic cane sugar.

I wanted something that was shootable, but sippable, and very mixable. It is sweet, but not as sweet as you taste because of the alcohol content. The cane sugar and unfiltered turmeric also give it a thicker viscosity. It works as a sweetener that can be used in margaritas or Manhattans, or a boulevardier. Take out the sweet vermouth or triple sec and go from there. J.D.

Oh, margaritas because they are quick and easy. But I also love to make a Corpse Reviver No. 2 (a classic “hair-of-the-dog” cocktail of gin, wine, and orange and absinthe liqueurs). It is a lot of building, but definitely worth the work.

What is your advice to a cocktail novice when ordering?

yet they are still popular because they can be tailored. When ordering, you can pick your bourbon, or even rye, to fit your taste. It can also be nice to add a simple syrup to bring up the flavor.

How do you think of new recipes? A lot of ideas come from the patrons who come into Galloway’s. People visit the bar and they are in the mood for something in particular. I’ve had people sit down and say, “I’m in the mood for something bubbly” or “I’m feeling fruity,” and our bartenders can usually create something that satisfies. Nothing is set in stone, [recipes] are an ongoing experiment. K.G.

1200 10th St. 360.756.2795

I’d recommended ordering something like a Manhattan or an Old Fashioned. Those are both drinks that have been around forever, September 2018 45

A-Town Bistro

House Specialty Drink

A Fine Drinking Establishment

Avenue A

Whiskey, Aperol, Sweet Vermouth, Bitters

Best Seat in the House


hen A’Town Bistro opened in 2011, the cocktail revolution was already in full swing. Owner (then bar manager) Timothy Moffitt was excited to bring the revolution to Anacortes. He set out to revitalize Anacortes’ love for classic cocktails and introduce new ones along the way. As a result, A’Town Bistro has cultivated an outstanding bar scene complete with a seasonal, staff-created cocktail menu that rivals any big-city bar. Staffers have immersed themselves in the cocktail culture and enjoy the creative freedom to develop cocktails. They’ve naturally started taking on roles — one

makes syrups and bitters, another creates shrubs, yet another, salts. Four of the bartenders have taken BarSmarts, the leading online bar education program. The result of this freedom to explore has resulted in colorful cocktails like “The Hahn,” made with Suntory Whisky Toki, honey syrup, lemon and Korean Red Pepper; and “The Harry Nilsson,” made with Citizen Gin, Coco Lopez, lime, fresh basil, Amargo Chuncho Bitters, and soda. Good ingredients, freshsqueezed juices, house made syrups and having a staff that cares is what makes this bar rise to the top. Time and attention to detail

At the end of the bar, where you can watch the kitchen staff and the bartender work.

contributes to the stellar experience you’ll have while sitting at the bar. I know. I’ve sat at their bar many times. I’m never afraid to say, “Make me something new.” It certainly doesn’t hurt that A’Town has an incredible, locally-sourced menu that is paired with the bar menu. Makes ordering a second cocktail a little easier. S.S.

A-Town Bistro

A’Town Bistro 418 Commercial Ave., Anacortes 360.899.4001,

Edible Garnishes These fun, flavorful garnishes top cocktails off perfectly and provide an added bite to your beverage. Try ordering them with your new favorite cocktail or adding them to your at-home recipes.

Pomegranate Seeds 46

Cucumber Ribbons

Flamed Orange Peel

How did you get into bartending? As a high school dropout in 1989, it was out of necessity. I was working at a Japanese restaurant in Huntington Beach, Calif. and the bartending position was the best — they had the most fun, made the most tips. When a shift would become available I’d volunteer. It was mostly on-the-job training and a lot of mentorship from seasoned bartenders.

What do you enjoy most about bartending?

Meet Mike Rothmeyer, history buff for all things cocktail and experienced bartending consultant for both The Union Tavern and Corner Pub in Bow.

Every bartender has baggage — bad habits, cutting corners, “This is the way I was taught,” or “I always shook my Manhattans.” I draw the line on shaking things you’re not supposed to shake or stirring things you’re not supposed to stir. The things I never bend on are quality spirits, a properly trained staff, and properly poured drinks.

What’s your go-to, off-duty drink? Boulevardier. It’s basically a Negroni with bourbon instead of gin. Most recipes are one part bourbon, one part sweet vermouth, one part Campari, but I tend to do a 2-1-1 ratio. It’s a little stronger. C.T.

People and hospitality. If that’s not your foundation for love of the business, then it’s going to show. It’s hard to fake that.

The Union Tavern 902 Commercial Ave. Anacortes 360.873.8245

What are some of the challenges you encounter when helping bars develop their cocktail programs?

Corner Pub 14565 Allen West Rd., Bow 360.293.8411

September 2018 47

Best Day To Visit Sunday — Happy Hour All day

Best Seat in the House The corner table for two in the bar. You get a perfect view of the bay.

The Madrona Bar and Grill

The Madrona Bar and Grill A Comfy Cocktail


hen you find yourself on Orcas Island, in need of a solid cocktail, a million-dollar view, and a comfy place to enjoy it all, head straight to the Madrona Bar and Grill. Tucked away from Main Street down a wooden walkway that appears to be leading you straight to the water, the Madrona doesn’t pretend to be anything other than a great place to eat and drink. Inside it’s open and airy, with three walls of windows looking out over the water. You’ll wonder 48

why you’ve never visited before. On an island full of farm-totable curated meals, it’s a welcome, no-nonsense place to have a stiff cocktail. Park yourself at the bar and order up. The bartenders will make your drink with a smile. There aren’t any tinctures or house made syrups here; just several shelves full of your favorite alcohols, and a solid bartending staff to mix them up. I put them to the test by ordering a Boulevardier — Campari, whiskey, sweet vermouth, bitters. It’s not a common drink, but a good bartender knows it. Sarah, the bartender, nailed it. And that’s precisely why I visit this bar every time I’m on the island. There’s something to be said for drinks without a performance. Sometimes I just like to order a drink and drink it. The Madrona’s signature cocktail is their Bloody Mary. Made from scratch, it’s served with a handful of garnishes and either a bacon or beer back. Seriously, folks. Solid. S.S. 310 Main St., Eastsound, Orcas Island 360.376.7171,

Home Bar Basics Nate, the barkeep at Friday Harbor House on San Juan

Island, prides himself on his craft cocktail work. He, like many barkeeps, curates his home bar with as much passion. Here are his recommendations for a solid home bar setup. S.S.

Fancy Shaker Why

The metal of the shaker conducts temperature so the ice won’t dilute the cocktail. Plus, everyone loves to shake a cocktail.

Best Bet

Leopold Vienna cocktail shaker.

Sanjaya Malakar, previous “American Idol” celebrity turned mixologist at The Barnacle, Eastsound, Orcas Island. How did you get into bartending? I was a singer for about 10 years. I moved to New York to pursue that and needed a job. A friend said, “Hey, can you watch my bar real quick?” I’d never been behind a bar before. He thought I’d figure it out. I quickly realized years of performance had prepared me to improv and just, make it happen.

What do you feel is your responsibility as the bartender? Creating an experience you won’t get anywhere else. Making it the kind of situation where, if you want that drink again, you have to come here.

I heard you were into tinctures? Tell me more.

Bottles Tonic

Mixes with everything, good to splash on top.


La Croix is a great go-to, otherwise, fresh lemon and lime juice.


Has more personality than vodka.

Scotch (aged 20 years or more) Have one rare or unique bottle as a conversation piece.


The Old Fashioned is a bar staple.

Go-to Gadgets

My dad is from India and my mom is Italian, so every meal was a production. When I got here and found out I had some creative freedom, I said, “Hey, what about making our own bitters?” I brought my whole spice rack and just made tinctures out of everything.


Double sided, to get consistency in your practice.

How often do you get to play with your tinctures? It depends on the night. Sometimes I have a little more time and freedom with people. If I have a good idea of what they want, then I’ll add a little change. For instance, I’ll use Cynar instead of Campari in a Negroni, and I’ll add my homemade morel tincture to it and it’s a little more earthy and smoky.

What’s next for you?

I’m working on bull kelp infused vodka! I have a lot of ideas. S.S.

The Barnacle 249 Prune Alley, Eastsound, Orcas Island 360.622.2675

Bar Spoon Strainer

Allows the mixed cocktail to come out clean.

It’s made to twist between your fingers and won’t melt the ice.


It’s nice to display your liquors.

Bar tray

Keep all the bar necessities together. September 2018 49

In Season Spring


Patio Nectar Northwater Mint leaves (muddled), lavender bitters, honeydew shrub, rum, lime juice. Top with club soda. Garnish with mint leaf and frozen melon ball.

Blueberry Mojito The Blue Abode Bar Silver Rum (Distillers Way), Samson Estate Blueberry Wine, simple syrup, lime juice, mint, soda water. Garnish with blueberries and fresh mint.

Types of Glasses From copper mugs to a margarita’s wide rim, cocktail glasses come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Ever wondered why brandy is served in a snifter, or the reason behind a highball glass’s shape or a shot glass’s sturdiness? We did too. Here’s what we found.


Moscow Mule

A Moscow Mule is typically served in a copper mug to keep the drink chilled, and to enhance the taste. Some experts believe that when vodka interacts with mug, the copper oxidizes, boosting the flavor.


Traditionally, this glassware is used to serve drinks that have an alcoholic base plus a larger quantity of a mixer, such as gin and tonic or scotch and soda.


A necessary part of the mixing process, this glass is used to measure alcohol. Bartenders swear by them to keep their drinks consistent.



Smoked Apple Martini 13moons Restaurant

Maple Brown Sugar Old Fashioned B-Town Kitchen & Raw Bar

Casa Noble Reposado Tequila, fresh apple cider, honey syrup, cinnamon, fresh lime juice to taste. Serve in martini glass with cinnamon, brown sugar and salt rim. Garnish with a fresh-baked apple slice.

Brown Sugar Bourbon, Knob Creek Maple Bourbon, bitters. Garnish with orange peel and Bordeaux cherry. Invented in collaboration by Melanie Wight and Jay Steger.

Champagne Flute The two most common Champagne glasses are the coupe and the flute. Both are traditionally used with Champagne or sparkling wines to allow the drinker to hold the glass without affecting the temperature.

Brandy Snifter

The shape of the glass allows the aroma to funnel up the curved rim. The round, bulbous part takes heat from your body when you hold it to warm the liquid.


The long stem is where the drink should be held in order to keep the drink the perfect temperature.


The origin of this glass is somewhat of a mystery. One tale is that a restaurant in L.A. received this oddshaped glass by mistake and decided to serve their margarita in them to command a higher price.

September 2018 51

Bellewood Acres From Apples to Alcohol


wenty-five thousand trees produce apples for Bellewood Distilling. The apples are crushed and put into 125-gallon tanks to ferment and then be distilled. About 30 pounds of apples go into each bottle of liquor. Bellewood owners and staff pride themselves on growing what they distill, embodying the tagline “farm to glass.” John and his wife Dorie Belisle planted Bellewood Acres’ first apple orchard in 1996. It quickly grew and become a local hotspot for picking your own apples or pumpkins in fall, and the best place to grab a slice of apple pie or a bite for lunch. They opened the distillery to utilize the large number of apples that can’t make it to market. Distiller Michael Brannan says they will produce about 8,000–10,000 gallons of vodka in a year, and about 300–600 gallons of brandy. “Everything is made from apples and grown on the farm,” he says.

Brannan says their goal has always been to make spirits good enough to enjoy neat or simply mixed in a way that highlights the spirits natural flavor. They produce eight different liquors and liqueurs. Among them are two different vodkas. One made with whatever apples they have on hand and another is the only vodka in the world made start-to-finish with Honeycrisp apples. Owner John Belisle says all their spirits are awardwinning, except one. “Every product we have except the regular vodka, any damn apple-in-the-bottle vodka, has won an award and that’s only because we haven’t entered it,” Belisle says. “We have Honeycrisp vodka and it’s magical and we always enter that.” J.D. 6140 Guide Meridian Rd., Lynden 360.318.7720,

Bellewood makes

• Vodka from apples, honeycrisp apples as well as a raspberry vodka. • Gin made with their special blend of juniper, coriander, cardamom, cinnamon, angelica root, and orange peel. • Apple brandy aged 28 months. • Eau de vie “water of life”, a European style unaged brandy. • Pumpkin spice liqueur made from their pumpkins. • Bruce, a combination of brandy and apple juice.

Bellewood Acres


Maria h Buten & Shawn schoen

organic is too expensive and people don’t really care, you probably shouldn’t do that. Our U-pick blueberry sales doubled the next year. Start a distillery, you probably shouldn’t do that. It’s what we’ve been told all along the way and also a little bit of a nod to that last drink before bed you stay up late to have and probably shouldn’t.

Probab ly Shouldn’t

What is your background? I am an English teacher at Lynden High School, and Shawn has his background as a heavy machine mechanic.

What kind of still do you use? There are a few people who make stills to produce liquor, but they all cost thousands of dollars. Shawn and his brother built ours from scratch. With a lot of research and his background in machinery, it took them about 100 hours total to build.

What has been the biggest challenge?

Mariah Butenschoen co-owns Everson’s Probably Shouldn’t distillery with husband Shawn. They bucked convention when they opened their unusually named business, says Mariah. Where did the name come from? Well, it’s kind of become our mantra: Everyone along the way has told us we probably shouldn’t do what we’ve done. Start a blueberry farm in Whatcom, you probably shouldn’t do that. Becoming certified

Probably Shouldn’t Gin Where to find it

Haggen, Liquor & Wine in Barkley Village, and Lynden Liquor

Best use Straight up. Pair with

Smoked salmon, smoked meats and cheese, or cucumber.

Gin Martini 3 ½ oz Probably Shouldn’t Gin ½ oz Dry vermouth Pour into an ice-filled martini shaker and shake until well-chilled (25–30 seconds). Serve straight up or on the rocks. Garnish with lemon peel or an olive

The licensing process was quite a challenge and there was a lot we had to educate ourselves on. The process took about three years and it requires a lot of hoops to jump through.

What do you like to make? Our Old Tom Gin is one of our newest spirits, so we have been using that a lot recently. It makes a great martini. Our apple and blueberry brandy also mix incredibly well into lemonade. J.D.

Probably Shouldn’t Distillery 3595 Breckenridge Rd., Everson 360.410.1632

Bellewood Acres Honeycrisp Apples Vodka

Paraty Spiced Banana Rum

Where to find it

Where to find it

Best use

Best use Sip it straight, or with ice.

Haggen, Community Food Co-Ops (downtown and Cordata Parkway) On the rocks.

Pair with

Steak and fall salad.

Sumas Liquor and Wine, Liquor Depot, Barkley Village Haggen

Pair with Sweet meat recipe, like honeylime pork.

Dirty Martini

Isabelle’s Whisper

2 ½ oz Honeycrisp Apples Vodka

1 ½ oz Isabelle Banana Rum

½ oz Dry vermouth

¼ oz Ginger liqueur

4 tsp. Olive brine

¼ oz Cynar

3 Olives to garnish Combine all ingredients except olives into a shaker full of ice and shake well until chilled. Strain into chilled martini glass.

½ oz Limone ½ oz Lemon juice Shake all ingredients, strain over ice, squeeze lime juice on top.

Valley Shine Distillery Bootlegging Family History Adds to Spirits’ Appeal uring Prohibition, Ben Lazowski’s grandfather worked as a bootlegger for infamous gangster Al Capone. Young Ben grew up hearing stories of his grandfather’s adventures (with certainly a few misadventures) and exploring secret passageways in this grandfather’s Chicago home. It’s ironic that years of alcohol prohibition could spark a fascination with the stuff decades later. Ben teamed up with his wife Stacey to open Valley Shine Distillery in April 2016. It took the Lazowskis five months to remodel the 100-year-old building. Large windows showcase the storefront’s clean lines. Unfinished hardwood floors and red-brick walls add warmth. Industrial accents and a sliding barnyard door add to the element of industrial chic decor.

Deception Distilling Gin

© Catherine Torres


The couple spent two-and-half years developing the product line, paying special attention to quality and details. They use locally sourced ingredients in their small-batch operation, making for a full-on Washington product. “Small batch means you can take more care in the quality of a product,” Ben says. “You’re not focused on the volume, so you can pay more attention to detail.” Currently, they produce eight varieties to include Limoncello, which won Gold for Best In Category at the

Where to find it

Wheelhouse in Anacortes, Pioneer Market in La Conner, Market at Anacortes

Best use Refreshing drink to enjoy on a sunny afternoon. Pair with Sweet berry or lemon dessert.

International Spirits Awards earlier this year and Red X Gin, which took Silver. Visit Valley Shine Distillery and try a tasting flight to sample all of Valley Shine’s spirits. You won’t be disappointed. While you are sampling, they offer a full restaurant menu from starters to dessert, allowing you to savor cocktail after cocktail without hunger pangs. L.K. 320 S. 1st St., Mount Vernon 360.588.4086

Valley Shine Distillery Revolution Rum

Where to find it Haggen, Total Wine & Spirits, Whole Foods Best use Rum Old Fashioned, mojitos Pair with Tacos

Mojito 2 oz Revolution Rum 1 oz Simple syrup 8 Mint leaves

Lavender & Lace 1 ½ oz Deception Distilling Gin 3 oz Soda 1 Sprig of lavender Stir gin with soda. Garnish with lavender. Enjoy. 54

2 Lime slices Club soda Muddle lime and mint in bottom of glass. Add rum, simple syrup, ice, and shake. Pour into glass and top with club soda.

Orcas Island Distillery Distilling History


ay, way off the beaten path, in an old-growth forest on Orcas Island, Charles West is creating award-winning spirits from heirloom, island-grown fruits. West owns and operates Orcas Island Distillery. It’s a business born from a retirement hobby. In his previous life he was a journalist and outdoorsman. He’s even been to mixology school (though he leaves the mixology to the professionals). It’s this desire to know everything about everything that has made his journey into distilling an award-winning one. A few years ago, West found himself with 12 tons of apples from old-growth orchards around the island. What do you do with all those apples? You make brandy. He used a 1-gallon distilling kit his son bought him and created his first

Orcas Island Distillery Eau de Vie

batch of spirits. And that was all it took to launch his second career. His unique spirit is Ferry Dock Genever-style gin — an old-world recipe from Belgium and Holland. It has to, by law, be 51 percent malted barley. The rest is the distiller’s choice. He chooses barley and rests his gin in rye barrels for a short period of time, gathering the nuanced flavor of rye. The result is a clean, juniper-flavored gin with hints of malt.

Where to find it At the distillery, or a liquor stores around the San Juan Islands. Best use It stands up well on it’s own as an after-dinner drink, also great as a Harvest Moon. Pair with Pear Gallette

Harvest Moon 1 ½ oz Rye Whiskey 1 oz Lillet Blanc ½ oz Apple Brandy Eau De Vie from our distillery ½ oz Green Chartreuse 3 dashes Abbott’s or Angostura bitters Stir ingredients with ice, strain into a martini or coupe glass garnished with an orange twist.

His spirits include: Ferry Dock Gin, Island Orchard Pear Brandy, Hard Apple Brandy, Apple Brandy Eau de Vie, West Island Whiskey. His small-batch distilling limits his distribution to the islands, so if you’re in the area I’d highly suggest setting up a tasting. S.S. Orcas Island Distillery, Orcas Island Tastings by appointment only 360.376.7077,

San Juan Island Distillery Spy Hop Gin

Where to find it At distillery; Esquin in Seattle; Total Wine in Bellevue, Northgate, Interbay and Lynwood; Capco in West Seattle. Best use In its signature drink, the Spy Hop. Pair with A hot day, a comfy chair, a view and some freshly caught fish.

Rock Skipper 3 parts Spy Hop Gin 1 part Cider syrup 1 part Lemon or lime juice 1 slice Jalapeño and cucumber Mix all ingredients in shaker and strain into a glass of ice.

SMALL Rock and Rye Oyster House 1145 N. State St., Bellingham 360.746.6130

Pork tacos, poutine, mussels, chowder and, of course, oysters. There are many delicious options for your palate to explore at Rock and Rye. The oysters they serve are rotated to reflect the best and freshest available.

What’s available Mussels, oysters, salad, poutine

Try their

Pan-fried oysters Rock and Rye Oyster House

Tasca del Tinto



111 W. Holly St., Bellingham 360.927.6236

714 Lakeway Dr., Bellingham 360.392.6520

120 W. Holly St., Bellingham 360.656.6817

The Iberian tapas bar in downtown Bellingham is a great place to grab a small bite or get a bunch of dishes to share among loved (or even just liked) ones. They have all sorts of combinations from the flavors of Spain and Portugal, be it fish, meat, or cheese.

In the need for a quick bite? B-Town Kitchen and Raw Bar has you covered with everything from clams to chicken wings on their small-plate menu. Try their Dungeness crab cakes for something “PNW,” or the almonddusted calamari for something fun and new.

The heart of Vinostrology is wine. Everything from the name to the decor on the walls to its handpicked selection of rotating wines on tap shows a devotion to it. But it’s also a great spot to grab a small bite – meats, cheeses, olives, or even their specially seasoned popcorn.

Traditional Spanish and Portuguese tapas with premium imported beer and wine

What’s available

What’s available

Try their

Try their

Try their

What’s available

Tapas Sampler — potatoes, almonds, cheese, chorizo 56

Raw bar, Dungeness crab cakes, Brussels sprouts Penn Cove Savory Blue Clams

Wine bar, hors d’oeuvres tailored to enhance the 20 wines on tap Castelvetrano — buttery, green Italian olives

BITES 5th Street Bistro 419 Commercial Ave., Anacortes 360.299.1400

Created seasonally and with as many local ingredients as possible, the menu at the 5th Street Bistro & Lounge is full of goodies. They’re always offering a seasonal slider, several salads, and even a burger. Anything that includes Guemes Island mushrooms is a must!

What’s available

Happy hour daily 3–6 p.m., Fri and Sat 9 p.m.–Midnight

Try their 5th Street Bistro

Compressed watermelon salad

Salt & Vine

The Barnacle

Champagne Champagne

913 6th St., Anacortes 369.293.2222

249 Prune Alley, Eastsound 360.622.2675

8292 Orcas Rd. (at the Orcas Ferry dock) 360.472.0092

Salt & Vine is a laid-back wine bar with a delicious selection of eats. Nosh on a Cheese Board, Charcuterie Board, Ploughman’s Board, or Petite Board, or create your own.

With a rotating menu that includes everything from grilled cheese with local island mushrooms to sushi, and always includes The Fisherman’s Friend, this is the perfect accompaniment to a cocktail.

A sweet little spot on Orcas Island with an unbeatable wine menu and tasty snacks like smoked oysters, homemade popcorn, olives, nuts, and pork rinds. You’re already in the ferry line, so stop by.

What’s available

What’s available

What’s available Wine, cheese & meats

Try their

Ploughman’s Board (meat and cheeses)

Hand-crafted cocktails and locally sourced small bites

Try their

Fisherman’s Friend — smoked fish, crackers and olives

An exotic wine list and tasty snacks

Try their

Homemade popcorn with spices

September 2018 57

Bar Guide Lovitt Restaurant

1114 Harris Ave., Bellingham, 360.671.7143

Up for a night of carousing, or just a quiet drink with some friends? Here’s a handy list of North Sound drinking establishments to help you get your bearings. (All listings are supplied by the businesses.)

Keenan’s at the Pier

804 10th Street, Fairhaven, 360.392.5510,

Lovitt is a farm-to-table restaurant in the heart of Fairhaven. If we don’t make it here, we don’t serve it. Local brews, wines, and seasonal cocktails. Live music most evenings. For a meal to remember in a relaxing and artful space, come to Lovitt.

Casual yet elegant, Keenan’s at the Pier, located inside The Chrysalis Inn & Spa, features fresh, local Northwest cuisine and a full bar. Take in panoramic views of Bellingham Bay and the San Juan Islands in a lively atmosphere.

Happy Hour Tues–Sun: 3–5:30 p.m.

Happy Hour Daily: 3–6 p.m.

Bay Breeze Restaurant and Bar

B-Town Kitchen & Raw Bar

7829 Birch Bay Dr., Blaine, 360.922.7902,

714 Lakeway Dr., Bellingham,

Bay Breeze offers two bar areas: a cool contemporary indoor lounge, complete with giant TV or the rooftop patio with a panoramic view of beautiful Birch Bay. Both areas offer great food, excellent service and delicious cocktails. Patio available for private parties.

B-TOWN is proud to offer seasonal menus that feature vibrant flavors and impressive lunch & happy hour. Featuring both indoor and outdoor seating (complete with a covered & heated patio and cozy fire pits!) as well as ample complimentary parking, as long as you’re at B-TOWN, we’ve got you covered.

Happy Hour Mon–Fri: 3–6 p.m.


R E S TA U R A N T & B A R

Stones Throw Brewery

Valley Shine Distillery

The brewery is welcome to all and built using shipping containers. We are dog and kid friendly, host to live music, numerous food options, relaxing beer gardens, and cozy firepits. Stones Throw is almost like your own backyard! Stop by and enjoy the perfect place after any type of adventure.

Valley Shine Distillery is a premier boutique distillery and restaurant that offers top shelf spirits and a seasonally inspired menu. Featuring Vodka, Gin, Run, Bourbon, Limoncello, Bonfire Toffee Liqueur, and Spider Bite a black licorice liqueur. Come in and taste all 7 spirits, get a handcrafted cocktail or enjoy something delicious off our menu.

Happy Hour Mon: $3 beer 12–6 p.m.

320 S 1st St., Mount Vernon 360.588.4086,

1009 Larrabee Ave., Bellingham,

Northwater Bar and Restaurant

Burnt Ends

Carefully crafted cocktails, expansive Happy Hour offerings, and both indoor and outdoor seating make northwater the perfect setting for any occasion. Both locally sourced ingredients and thoughtful care go into each glass and each plate, making each sip and bite a memorable one.

Burnt Ends is a barbecue restaurant and catering company in Lynden, Washington that boasts solid wood smoking and grilling. Experience your favorite cuts of meat the way they’re supposed to taste. Pair your meal with a signature cocktail from our bar, and finish your meal with our Edaleen Dairy ice-cream.

4260 Mitchell Way, Bellingham, 360.521.7179

Happy Hour Mon–Sat: 3–7 p.m. Sun: All day


Happy Hour Mon–Sat: 3–6 p.m., All Day Sunday

8082 Guide Meridian Road, Lynden, 360.922.0271

Happy Hour N Cuisine, orthwest St h c yle en Fr

Mon. - Sat. 4pm-6pm Fri. - Sat 9pm - close $1 Off local crafted draft beer and house wine 10 % off the entire food menu and beverage, including specialty cocktails and wine list.

Coming soon

Live Music Friday and Saturday “Ruby Flambe” live on the 3 rd Thursday of the month at EAT.

DINNER 4pm-9pm | BRUNCH Sat.- Sun. 11am-2pm

1200 Cornwall Ave., Bellingham | | 360.306.3917

craft cocktails tasty bites sweets

BEST of the


in mid September EAT will open for Brunch / Lunch on Thursday & Friday 11am-2pm



ZE BRON | 360.756.2795

1200 10th St Suite #102 Bellingham, WA

DYNASTY CELLARS Thank you for voting us


of the




of the








Craft Cocktails!

Now serving food 804 10th St Bellingham WA


2169 E Bakerview Rd, Bellingham 360.758.2958 |

seco 60

ond Acts

Four North Sounders Left Established Careers to Follow Their Hearts This is not a midlife crisis, or the result of a few bad days — or months — at work. A second act is one deliberately made, one that requires a plan to realize a longheld dream of a different career or a different life. It usually means financial risk, a giant leap from the safety and security of a job that you’ve trained for and worked toward for years, one in which you are probably an expert. Bellingham’s Russ Kendall and Doug Robertson, along with Orcas Island’s Audra Lawlor and Susan Soltes of Bow, are each on their second acts. A second act takes chutzpah, because it’s a leap into the uncertain. It takes passion and confidence and stubbornness, people who support you, and sometimes ignoring others who say you are crazy. We thought it would be a good idea for them to tell what led to the leap, and how it’s playing out now. Here, in their own words, are their stories.

September 2018 61


no prod

ta k e


ACt 1



econd acts are scary. You spend your whole life pursuing and conquering your dream and then at a certain point, you stand on your front porch, about to go in the door, and think to yourself: “Is this it? Is this the rest of my life?” I was 50 and my answer was clear: “I’ve got one more in me!” I just didn’t know what it was going to be. For almost 30 years, I was in film production. I started as a production assistant, became a production manager, a producer, an editor and finally, I became a director. It was fast and fantastic. I always thought creating television commercials on a big scale would be fun. And it was. I worked with amazingly talented people, traveled the world and did everything from creating World War II scenes to New York Fashion Week to struggling with 6-year-olds to get just the perfect Kraft “cheese pull.” I never knew where I would be or what I product I would be pushing next. I truly loved the adrenaline rush of the unknown and the race to the finish when we could say it was “in the can.” But there’s always a “but.” It was 18-hour days for weeks at time, away from my family and sometimes completely soulless because people didn’t always need what I was pouring my guts into creating. Organic blueberry farming seemed like something with soul. Who could argue that blueberries weren’t good for you? The truth is that Harley, my photojournalist husband, had always wanted to be a farmer. He’s a voracious researcher and we had dabbled at farming over the years. Then he landed a job to shoot a book called “Chefs on the Farm” at the Quillisascut farm school in eastern Washington. Chefs come there from all over to learn how to cook regionally and seasonally. We were both completely turned on by this. Me so much

so that I jumped in and took their Beginning Farmer class. By the end, I was profoundly changed. I learned what “enough” meant and I thought to myself, I think I can do this. Soon after, we drove past a for-sale sign on the old Anderson Blueberry Farm on Bow Hill Road and the “one more” locked in. We saw the farm as a project. It was the oldest blueberry farm in Skagit Valley so it came with history, mature heirloom varieties and a story to tell. We thought to ourselves “Let’s revive this place, take it organic and see if we can make this the community center it once was.” Harley’s job was to grow the berries. He researched like crazy, consulted everyone he could find in the blueberry business and became friends with every organic farmer in the valley. Our son picked the name, Bow Hill Blueberries, and luckily our daughter is a graphic designer. My job was to spiffy the place up, create the brand, get the word out and take care of finances. I took Washington State University’s Cultivating Success course and worked with the Economic Development Alliance of Skagit County, the Northwest Agriculture Business Center, Sustainable Connections and Western Washington University’s MBA program to learn how to make the farm sustainable though the creation of a line of organic blueberry products. I did a few more commercials after we bought the farm, but I knew that without full focus I wasn’t going to be able to pull this off. I was scared to give up filmmaking, and I still get a little anxious about using my married name rather than Susan Buster Thomas, but I can honestly say this is more fulfilling and every bit as creative as anything I’ve done for work before. I get to look out my window every day and watch a live documentary unfold in the most gorgeous place in the world and know it’s “enough.” Most people actually hate commercials anyway. 


Susan Soltes co-owns organic

blueberry farm Bow Hill Blueberries with husband Harley Soltes in the Skagit Valley town of Bow. As Susan Buster Thomas, her Act One was working in film production as a producer

Organic blueberry farming seemed like something with soul.

and director of television commercials.

September 2018 63


Russ Kendall owns catering company Gusto

Wood Fired Pizza, where he built a portable pizza oven and opened for business with his wife, ThÊrèse. He is a regular vendor at the Bellingham Farmers Market on Saturdays. His Act One was working as a photojournalist, most recently at the Bellingham Herald, where he was photo editor for eight years until 2012.

In 2011, a mobile wood-fired pizza oven started to sound like a pretty good Plan B. 64

Russ Kendall Pizza, With Gusto WRITTEN BY RUSS KENDALL | PHOTOGRAPHED BY Tony Overman


or most of the past 35 years, I enjoyed a rewarding and meaningful career as a documentary photojournalist, living and working in Alaska, Colorado, Maine, New Hampshire, even Russia. I’ve camped with grizzly bears, lived with Eskimos, run from a towering wall of flame with a remote Hot Shot fire crew as they battled a 300,000-acre wildfire, and published eight picture books with Scholastic Inc., selling over 3 million of them. In December of 2012, after eight years as the picture editor of the Bellingham Herald newspaper, I walked away from my career to start a catering company, Gusto Wood Fired Pizza, named after my son, Gus. Starting in late 2007 and continuing through today, the newspaper world has been rocked by massive and continuing layoffs and budget cuts. The Herald, owned by the Californiabased McClatchy Co., had 200 employees when I joined the staff in 2005. It has around 30 today, according to The Herald’s own website. One round of layoffs is demoralizing. Two is soul-crushing. I survived six rounds of layoffs. What’s worse, seeing your friends, staff and colleagues lose their jobs, or the survivor’s guilt and shame you feel when you get to keep yours? Knowing it was only a matter of time until I got laid off, I started thinking about my Plan B. I’ve always believed that we should all have a Plan B tucked away, no matter how good our current situation. The worst time to think about your next job is just after you’ve suddenly lost your current one. When I took a three-year detour from photojournalism to teach college in Portland, I built a wood-fired pizza oven in my backyard and loved cooking in it, inviting the neighbors over for pizza parties. I had summers off and remember telling my wife, Thérèse, how much I’d love to put the oven in the back of a pickup truck and drive around to beaches and parks and people’s houses selling pizza and catering parties. That never happened, but our son was born, and we moved to Bellingham. Life and work were great until the layoffs came and came and came. In 2011 that mobile wood-fired pizza oven started to sound like a pretty good Plan B. I’ve always loved

cooking and have a vivid memory of my grandfather, a shortorder cook, bringing me into his kitchen when I was 6 years old and solemnly teaching me how to cut onions with a chefs’ knife. When Gus was 6, I brought him into our kitchen and taught him how to cut onions with a chef’s knife. It was as if my grandfather was in the room with us. I did my research. For about the cost of a new car, and with the love and support of Thérèse, I took the leap of faith. In December 2012, after being invited to join the Bellingham Farmers’ Market as a food vendor, I gave The Herald my twoweek notice. Ironically, I never did get laid off. That first year, 2011, we had just five events. But the business grew and just about doubled every year. In 2017 we had more than 130 events. We’ve vended and catered hundreds of events, everything from small dinner parties to 350-person wedding dinners. By rough calculations, I figure that since 2011, I’ve cooked more than 50,000 pizzas! Today Gusto Wood Fired Pizza owns two mobile ovens, a commercial tow vehicle and a commercial property in which we hope to build our own commissary kitchen and a business office, maybe even one day, a Neapolitan pizzeria. Every Saturday we’re at the Bellingham Farmers Market, where we set out tables and chairs for our friends and clients. We believe strongly in buying as locally and organically as possible and have built a strong network of local farmers and producers. Interestingly, the things that helped me succeed as a journalist — good people skills, ability to multi-task while meeting multiple deadlines, creative problem-solving and out-of-thebox thinking — are the same skills that have helped me succeed as a caterer. At the farmers market I used to give free pizzas to any journalist who’d lost their job, but I had to stop. There were just too many of them. Two years ago, I started a Facebook group called “What’s Your Plan B?” for journalists who have lost their jobs and those who haven’t lost their jobs...yet. It had just 15 members when I started it but has nearly 13,000 members today. 

September 2018 65


Doug Robertson is an adjunct professor teaching political science

and economics at Whatcom Community College in Bellingham. His Act One was working as an attorney at Belcher/Swanson Law Firm in Bellingham. 66


It’s a daily challenge: it forces me to be a more thoughtful communicator and thinker.



very year our family goes on a New Year’s Day hike. The tradition started as a way to share family time when our kids were young. We wanted it to be an activity where we’d reflect on the old and look ahead to the new. As the kids got older, I would muse that I wanted to do more with my life. And on one of those hikes, I came to the conclusion that I should pursue teaching — a career I’d always been interested in, but passed over for law. Even the idea of moving from law to teaching was terrifying: giving up a decades-long career into which I had poured my heart and soul; leaving my partners, who had become some of my best friends and greatest mentors; learning an entirely new profession; and, most practically, taking an enormous pay cut. So why change? As my kids grew up and out of the house, I realized that the days behind me were beginning to outnumber the days in front of me. The law was getting to be more administrative than I liked. It is, and has been, an “all-in game,” with 60- and 70-hour weeks the norm. I simply wanted more out of life and in my mid-50s, it was now or never. Leaving my practice would be hard. Teaching is a challenging profession and I wanted to have a strong foundation before embarking on this new adventure. I had to plan and execute the change over a number of years. I told my law partners a few years in advance so we could plan together. My first

transition year, I re-took classes at Whatcom Community College — ones I had already passed as a college student decades ago — to get up to date as I wound my practice down, reliving the horror of studying on Sundays again. For my second transition year, I attended Western Washington University’s College of Education, taking the classes necessary to obtain a state teaching certificate. I was fortunate to be offered an adjunct position at WCC. I have been teaching now for three years in both political science and economics. I love it. Teaching is hard! Just like good comedy, it is not the just the content, but the delivery. How do I convey federalism, the velocity of money, or current political polarization in a manner that engages and motivates the students to want to learn? At 8 a.m.? To a bunch of 17- to 22-year-olds who go to bed at 2 a.m.? It’s a daily challenge: it forces me to be a more thoughtful communicator and thinker. Yes, I still get up early and dedicate long hours to “work.” But now it’s to prep for class, research for content and lectures, to grade tests and papers, and to work, one-on-one, with students. But even though my days are still long, I revel in my second career. Every day is a new opportunity to engage one more student. Seeing the moment when students realize they want to learn how to learn, that “aha moment,” is a better reward than any paycheck. 

September 2018 67

Audra Lawlor Wall Street to Orcas Heirlooms WRITTEN BY AUDRA LAWLOR | photographed by Roman Cho Photography


Audra Lawlor is the name behind the nationally known business “Girl Meets

Dirt” on Orcas Island in San Juan County, where she makes and sells preserves made from heirloom fruit. Her Act One was working as a Wall Street currency consultant from the busier island of Manhattan.


can still feel the sense of dread, palpable at 6 a.m. as the alarm buzzed me awake. I’d reach quickly for the phone and fumble to find the “stop” button. And in a moment, rest was over, and reality set in. It’s not that I didn’t like what I was doing as an investment bank’s currency consultant, nor that I didn’t enjoy the people I was doing it alongside — they were intelligent, dedicated, inventive and fun. New York City was exciting, and delicious (sushi at 11 p.m. on a Tuesday delivered from across the street). It also was fascinating, with cultures clashing all around, sirens, and horns, the cacophony of 1.7 million people living in one relatively small island. But my heart had never left the West. I never intended to work on Wall Street. After studying economics, history and English at Seattle University, I was aiming for a career in sustainable development with an emphasis on Latin America. But a connection through my college mentor led to a job, and a life, I hadn’t imagined. I’d been working in my accidental career on Wall Street nearly 10 years when I decided it was time to leave, for good. I’d tried multiple times to leave,


but the siren call of career advancement, or the blur of a romantic relationship, kept me tethered. I’d just gotten married in Roche Harbor to an Irishman who’d promised to hold my hand, in sickness and in health, as I led us back to find my heart. We didn’t stroll. We dove, headfirst, into uncertainty and life change. One week post-marriage, settling back into my hectic Manhattan work life, my husband blurted out: Why don’t we move to Orcas? My entire being hummed, and I waited for him to start laughing, or recount the hundreds of reasons why this would be a risky, terrible decision at this point in our lives. But this time was different. If we were going to start over, why shouldn’t we start over exactly where we’d want to be? A small island in the Pacific Northwest that I’d grown up boating around, a place we could buy land, swim, cycle, and trail run to our hearts content, and start a family — it felt destined and absolutely ridiculous at the same time. Four months later we arrived at our new home on a cold, wet, dreary island day, and resolved to make it work forever. I dug into the garden, happy with

dirt under my fingernails, and watched things I seeded grow. Most days, it was bliss. But it wasn’t all seedlings and cold, juicy plums from the icebox. It took me years to harness the inspiration that led to starting my fruit preserves company, Girl Meets Dirt. And my husband spent thousands of hours on airplanes lapping the globe trying to keep income flowing. We also faced recurrent pregnancy loss and spent years trying to start our family. I launched my business between miscarriages four and five — desperately needing to refocus on something I could control better than my body. My sixth pregnancy, for reasons unbeknownst to us, was different and along came my son. And then, 22 months later, my joyful daughter. Life now is full and rich and busy and sticky and hectic…but I have my heart back. My 6 a.m. alarm is now the birds or the babes or the rooster crowing, followed by toast or oatmeal with jam of my own invention, fruit plucked from the trees that also found this a perfect place to take root centuries ago. And stress? It never goes completely away, but I’m grateful to wash it away nightly in the  Salish Sea.

It took me years to harness the inspiration that led to starting my fruit preserves company, Girl Meets Dirt.

September 2018 69

Her curiosity: Her curiosity: limitless. limitless. Your window Your window fashions: fashions: Cordless. cordless.

Get ready for holiday gatherings with stylish new shades and save.



Discover innovative window fashions from Hunter Douglas that Rebates enhance safety at Starting at the window. Ask today about a wideOn array of qualifying purchases* cordless operating systems SEPTEMBER 22 - DECEMBER 10 including the ultimate in operating convenience, SEASON® OF STYLE EVENT Motorization. PowerView 4 Duette® Honeycomb Shades





on qualifying purchases*


Plus $25 Rebate Per Additional Unit


Duette® honeycomb shades

Russell's Covering Rd., Ste 101, Bellingham 410 Window West Bakerview 873 Hinotes Ct Bldg A2 West Bakerview Mall By IHOP Lynden, WA Russell's Window Covering 360-656-6579 360-738-8175 873 Ct Bldg A2 Lynden, WA Call Hinotes For Free In-Home Consultation

Vignette® Modern Roman Shades ~B







Mon. - Fri. 10am - 5pm, Sat. 9:30am-1pm 360-656-6579

©2018 Hunter Douglas. All rights reserved. All trademarks used herein are the property of Hunter Douglas or their respective owners. 16CSNPDUC2


*Manufacturer’s mail-in rebate offer valid for qualifying purchases made 9/22/18–12/10/18 from participating dealers in the U.S. only. Rebate will be issued in the form of a prepaid reward card and mailed within 4 weeks of rebate claim approval. Funds do not expire. Subject to applicable law, a $2.00 monthly fee will be assessed against card balance 6 months after card issuance and each month thereafter. See complete terms distributed with reward card. Additional limitations may apply. Ask participating dealer for details and rebate form. ©2018 Hunter Douglas. All rights reserved. All trademarks used herein are the property of Hunter Douglas or their respective owners. 18Q4NPVC2


360.296.9071 | | 3924 Irongate RD, Suite C, 98226 Bellingham Professional Finishes honors traditional craftsmanship, using globally recognized products together with innovative and sustainable practices to provide highest quality finishes.

HABITAT Home Remodel Tips and Tricks ¡ Featured Home



s far as remodels are concerned, you might think that the most dramatic transformations are also the most expensive and the most complicated. The waterfront Beach Drive remodel on Camano Island, featured in the July 19 Wall Street Journal and executed by principal architect Dan Nelson of Designs Northwest Architects, proves these misconceptions wrong. The resulting ‌ continued on next page

HABITAT Featured Home … transformation was so complete that neighbors believed it to be a newly constructed home, yet the remodel was cost effective and, at times, surprisingly simple. “Most of the remodel was an exterior intervention,” Nelson said. “It was an amazing transformation. We turned into a modern house. It’s now contemporary, eclectic, and warm.”

Western red cedar shingles and corrugated steel panels were used throughout the exterior.

He affectionately described the home’s original exterior as something reminiscent of a mid-century Econolodge. Renovations included removing false dormers from the mansard roof, adding corrugated steel panels, expanding window openings overlooking the water, and enhancing the entryway with arbors and steel columns.

While the interior also received a facelift, its transformation was achieved through strategic, less intensive changes. The staircase was improved by replacing wooden handrails, which were dark and heavy, with modern stainless steel cable. Homeowners Ron and Judy Hoefer recognized the home’s potential, despite … continued on page 74

A bay window on the front of the house was removed and squared off.

The garage was outfitted with a new translucent glass aluminum door and clad in corrugated metal.

2034 James Street, Bellingham

(360) 734-6140


Jack & Michelle Johnson

When it comes to servicing and repairing your garage doors and openers, no one does it better than Overhead Door. No matter what brand or model... from simple tune-ups and repairs to full replacement and the experts at Overhead Door to get the job done right – right away.

202 Ohio St., Bellingham, WA | (360) 734-5960 |

Sunset Location

Now Open!

• Happy Hour Every Day 3:30–5:30 pm • Outdoor Dining Year Round • 1/2 Price Wine on Wednesday 1801 Roeder Ave Bellingham WA 98225 360.306.5668

1065 E Sunset Drive Bellingham WA 98226 360.707.7400

Sales, Service & Repair

Lawn and Garden Supplies

Equipment Rentals

“LOCAL and Working for You Since 1962”

HABITAT Featured Home

… its lackluster, dated exterior. Intrepid remodelers, it was Ron Hoefer who discovered the original wooden stairs hidden beneath carpet. Willing to contribute more than a little elbow grease, Hoefer sanded and stained the stairs. The Hoefers were inspired by shingled beachfront buildings, both commercial and residential, in Canon Beach, Oregon, where they have traveled annually for almost forty years. The Hoefers had previously built and remodeled several homes together, so their experience and input was an asset. “We had a great team that communicated well and really listened to us. It’s so important to choose a good team of architects, designers, and contractors,” Ron Hoefer said. “We ended with a great product, as well as our sanity, love, and appreciation.” For homebuyers looking to achieve a similarly impressive, cost-effective remodel, Nelson advised evaluating a home’s structure. “The trick is to find a house that has a good structure already,” Nelson said. “It quickly becomes expensive when you decide to make structural modifications, for example, by adding a second story or other addition.” The Hoefers enjoy spending time near the water with their friends and family, and enjoy demonstrating their hospitality. When asked about his favorite feature in the home, Hoefer said, “When you walk in the front door, you see a wall of windows that showcase the beauty of the water, Mt. Baker, and the Cascades. I suppose that’s what I love best about it. I love to see the sun rise over Mt. Baker in the summertime. And in the evening, when the sun is setting, you get this moon river effect coming across the bay.”  Architect | Principal Architect Dan Nelson with Project Architect Matt Radach, Designs Northwest Architects, Stanwood Interior Designer | H2K Design, Stanwood Contractor | Impel Construction, Stanwood Photographer | Lucas Henning, Bellingham 74

Expanding the four square windows opened up the home to ample natural light and expansive waterfront views. The Hoefers hired a skilled painter to apply a faux driftwood effect to lighten the interior’s dark brown wooden beams, which required five coats as well as artistry.

Follow us on Pinterest!

No, now is a great time to talk...

Glad you called! KATHY STAUFFER

Whatcom County...Even when it rains, I shine! Managing Broker 360-815-4718

Bring In The Outdoors...But Not All Of It. Outdoor shading products from Russell’s Window Coverings.

Sonnette™ Roller Shade

360.656.6579 or 360.961.4918 | 873 Hinotes Court A2 | Lynden, WA 98264

® TM

Burgers • Wings Fat Sandwiches

1861 Van Dyk Rd. Everson, WA 360.966.7787


Friday-Saturday 11am to 3am




take-out and delivery 360-366-8752

of the


of the




Sun-Thursday 11am to 1am




414 W Bakerview Rd., Ste. 112, Bellingham

Order online



Full Service Fish Market and Lunch Available


Mon�Sat ��:����pm with lunch until �pm Sun ����pm with lunch until �pm

Nickis Bar and Grill on the waterfront in Bellingham serving award winning, hand dipped, tempura style fish & chips. Build your own burger featuring our handcrafted USDA chuck patties and fresh baked buns. 18042 WA-20 Burlington, WA 360-707-2722



2615 South Harbor Loop Drive, Bellingham 360.332.2505 |


8 Great Tastes · Dining Guide · Mixing Tin · Sip

Swinomish Casino Scores Sport Bar Menu Gets an Upgrade WRITTEN AND PHOTOGRAPHED BY CATHERINE TORRES


winomish Casino and Lodge underwent major additions this past summer. Answering popular demands, they added new dining options: Fatburger, Manchu WOK, a renovated Carver’s Cafe, and revamped the Swinomish Sports Bar & Grill. Chef Corey … continued on next page

… O’Neil, the assistant director of food and beverage, is responsible for the grill’s new, elevated menu. A Sedro-Woolley native, O’Neil graduated the California Culinary Academy in 2005. After graduation he worked in Seattle’s iconic Ray’s Boathouse and Cafe before moving back to Skagit Valley. He has been at Swinomish Casino for almost five years, making him a knowledgeable source on what Swinomish patrons want from a sports bar. At first, Swinomish Sports Bar & Grill looks like a regular sports bar with the typical booths and big screen TVs, but that’s where the similarities end. Sports memorabilia decorates the spaces between the walls: Seahawks jerseys, Mariners caps, and even Hank Aaron memorabilia — all of which patrons can purchase. Then there’s the food. It’s not your run-of-the-mill sports-bar food. Chef O’Neil forged a middle ground between the casino’s fine dining restaurant, 13moons, and Carver’s Cafe, the casino’s casual eatery. He hit a mark where patrons can dine on fried Brussels sprouts studded with tangy dried cranberries ($10) and pan-seared airline chicken breast with honey pecan butter ($17) without feeling the need to wear a tie. Diners can sample a light, citrusy-ginger ahi tuna salad ($17) or go the more classic bar-food route with zesty buffalo chicken pizza ($11). The bar’s Italian grinder sandwich — layers of pepperoni, ham, pepperoncini, and Italian dressing on a toasted sub roll — is great for a light meal ($11). If you’re looking for something more filling, try the incredibly tender grilled hanger steak ($25). The steak soaks for 24 hours in a honey Dijon mustard marinade. It’s served with a bright chimichurri sauce, seasonal vegetables, and mashed potatoes. In the mood for barbecue? Go for the half or full rack of dry-rubbed ribs ($18 for half, $25 for full). The in-house smoked ribs are a little sweet, a little zesty, and pack a slight hit of heat. Served with honey horseradish coleslaw, cowboy beans, and a cornbread muffin, it’s a meal that’ll make you think you’re in Memphis. When the game goes into overtime, calm your nerves with an order of cinnamon sugar dusted mini-donuts served with a caramel dipping sauce ($6). Even if your team loses, your appetite wins.  Swinomish Casino Sports Bar & Grill 12885 Casino Dr., Anacortes 360.293.2691 |


DINING KEY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . up to $9 . . . . . . . . . . . . . $10–19 . . . . . . . . . . . . $20–29 . . . . . . . . $30 or greater . . . . . . . . . . . . Breakfast . . . . . . . . . . . . . Brunch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Lunch . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dinner

7829 Birch Bay Dr., Blaine 360.922.7902, Built in 1924, the iconic Bay Breeze Restaurant and Bar is Birch Bays only true seaside dining experience. Recently remodeled and under new management, Bay Breeze proudly serves fresh Pacific Northwest seafood, Kobe burgers, Asian-inspired specialties and delectable signature cocktails all at reasonable prices. Enjoy the 180-degree view of picturesque Birch Bay from any seat in the dining room and leave with a smile. Open 7 days a week. Sun–Thurs 11:30 a.m.–9 p.m. Fri–Sat. 11:30 a.m.–10 p.m.

. . . . . . . . . Family-Friendly . . . . . . . . . . . . . Takeout . . . . . . . . Outdoor Seating   . . . . . . . . . . Reservations   . . . . . . . . . . Happy Hour . . . . . . . . . New Review Menu items and prices are subject to change, so check before you go. See all our restaurant reviews on our Eat and Drink tab at  * Review provided by restaurant.


BELLINGHAM CIDER CO. American 205 Prospect St., Bellingham 360.510.8494, The food reminds me of the type of homecooked meal that, as a youngster, you would look forward to when your parents decided to make a special meal. Comfort food is reflected in the simple, yet thoughtful and well-executed dishes. Each dish has a handful of components and ingredients all locally or regionally sourced. The kitchen is open, and you can sit at the bar and chat. Dinner is Wednesday through Sunday, with lunch added on weekends. The short ribs, slowly braised in beer for hours, are fall-apart tender. With the appetizer of burnt carrots, lightly grilled/charred and fantastic on their own, the meal reminds me of my mother’s pot roast, in the best way. The most popular item on the menu? The chicken and waffles. Some advice: If you order the burnt carrots, ask for them extra dark.

205 W. Smith Rd., Bellingham 360.398.8300, In addition to offering you an array of scratchmade food, 9 Restaurant features an extensive selection of beers and spirits. With over 50 whiskeys, 60 tequilas and everything in between, we know you’ll find just what you need to wet your whistle. Stop in and check out our spirit flights and specialty cocktails!   B-TOWN KITCHEN AND RAW BAR Seafood, American

714 Lakeway Dr., Bellingham 360.671.1101, If fresh shellfish is your gastronomic highlight, you’re in the right place at B-Town Kitchen, in the former Poppe’s 360 space. The Seafood Tower for Two offers plenty to sample; items from the Small Plates menu, like thick handsliced strips of Calamari Steak, make terrific appetizers or adult beverage-worthy snacks. For an entrée, the Double R Ranch Ribeye Steak, is sauced with Oyster Mushroom demiglace, and served with sides of fresh seasonal vegetables and togarashi red potato mash.


BLACK SHEEP Mexican 215 W. Holly St., Bellingham 360.526.2109, Co-owners Charlie Pasquier and Chas Kubis opened Black Sheep with the same approach they took to Goat Mountain Pizza years earlier, a devotion to scratch-made, fresh ingredients, Pasquier said. “We wanted to make tacos we could eat every day. Really, we just wanted to eat more tacos,” he says. With homemade tortillas, fresh garnish, slow-braised meats, each taco tastes and looks like a small masterpiece just waiting to be demolished. The taco list ranges from classic options such as carne asada, topped with salsa verde and a sweet corn salsa, to their unique gyro tacos, which feature your choice of lamb, brisket, cauliflower or sweet potatoes. Four dollars for just one taco, $7 for two and $9 for three, it just keeps getting better.

Dining Guide


cheese fries or mozzarella sticks. Our iconic Fat Sandwiches are what keep customers coming back time and again. Jam-packed with your favorite late-night food, these sandwiches are a craving you won’t be able to resist.   FIRESIDE MARTINI & WINE BAR Eclectic/Bar 416 W. Bakerview Rd., Bellingham 360.738.1000, Fireside is out to make a name for itself. By using fresh, local ingredients, and a menu that changes on an almost daily basis (based on what’s fresh at the market that day), the Fireside has a lot to offer the casual diner and those more focused on detail. The Fireside claims to have the largest “by the glass” wine selection in Bellingham, none of which are served anywhere else in the area. Cocktails are based on in-house infusions of spirits and it’s a collection found only at Fireside. Beer options range from local to obscure to international. The decor in Fireside is welcoming and intimate, with couches and armchairs throughout the lounge.   LOVITT American 1114 Harris Ave. Bellingham 360.671.7143, The folks at Lovitt restaurant in Fairhaven are giving fair warning: Be prepared to wait a little longer for your food. These things — Lovitt’s “relaxed” farm-to-table eating — take time. Owners Norman and Kristen Six say they believe in cooking from scratch: bread, ice cream, and even ketchup and salad dressings are made in-house. An ever-changing menu reflects their adherence to what’s local and what’s in season. Appealing dinner entrees may include Four Mushroom Stroganoff, with morel, oyster, pioppino and shitake mushrooms with a red wine sour cream sauce spilling over handmade egg noodles and topped with crispy kale, and red wine maple-glazed salmon with roasted vegetables. Lunch offers the local, grass-fed beef burger, served on a homemade bun. They’ve got local brews and wine, and a 3–6 p.m. happy hour, with drink and appetizer specials each day they’re open (Tuesday–Saturday). Bring the kids — there’s even a play area.   THE MILL BISTRO AND LOUNGE French 655 Front St., Lynden 360.778.2760,

FAT SHACK* American 414 W. Bakerview Rd., Ste. 112, Bellingham 360.366.8752, Get all your late-night cravings satisfied in one spot. Enjoy our mouthwatering burgers made of 100 percent Angus beef on a toasted brioche bun, our delicious deep fried desserts, or one of our classic late-night munchie foods like

The Mill is the type of place where one could spend a full afternoon grazing on cheeses, sipping cocktails, and enjoying a good book. The bistro-like atmosphere gives the restaurant a European vibe without losing the welcoming small-town service of quaint Lynden. The menu is full of bistro plates like fresh salads, panini, soups, and, of course, meats and cheeses.

September 2018 79


R E S TA U R A N T & B A R


off a meal

(Expires September 30th)




R E S TA U R A N T & B A R

7829 Birch Bay Dr. Blaine, WA


Hours: Weekdays 11:30am-9:30pm Weekend 11:30am-10:30pm

4260 Mitchell Way, Bellingham 360.398.6191, From breakfast to late night dinner, Northwater’s 185-seat restaurant features Pacific Northwest dishes made from locally sourced and sustainable ingredients. We found the restaurant’s wait staff to be personable and enthusiastic, and eager to answer our queries about ingredient sources and what desserts they’d recommend. There’s a diverse menu of classic dishes with a twist, like the Seafood Sausage Corn Dogs with blueberry mustard — sweet-from-the-citrus cornbread and spicy from the mustard. Try the Fried Chicken and Waffle, featuring savory flavors of garlic and herbs drizzled with a pepper syrup.

In addition to offering you an array of scratch-made food, 9 Restaurant features an extensive selection of beers and spirits. With over 50 Whiskeys, 60 Tequilas and everything in-between, we know you’ll find just what you need to wet your whistle. Stop in and check out our spirit flights and specialty cocktails! 205 W Smith Rd., Bellingham | 360.398.8300 |

ÖVN WOOD-FIRED PIZZA Pizza 1148 10th St., Fairhaven 360.393.4327, The clean lines and urban upscale atmosphere of this pizza restaurant promises some very good food — and they deliver on that promise. They also serve crispy salads and excellent cocktails. Dining here is a perfect way to spend an elegant lunch or intimate dinner.   THE STEAK HOUSE AT SILVER REEF HOTEL C ­ ASINO SPA Steak/Seafood 4876 Haxton Way, Ferndale 360.383.0777, This award-winning restaurant offers elegant dining and an intimate atmosphere. Primegrade steaks are broiled at 1,800 degrees to lock in the natural juices and finished with a special steak butter. The wine list is ample and recognized for its quality by Wine Spectator. This dining experiences rivals any of the bigtown steak houses in quality and service without the big-city price tag.


12885 Casino Dr., Anacortes 360.588.3800, Located within the casino, 13moons is sure to catch your attention. Situated on the waterfront, 13moons has a warm and inviting lodge atmosphere. The menu offers a wide variety including first plates, entree salads, seafood, and steaks. We started our meal with generous pours of wine, then moved on to the filet mignon, which was cooked to perfection and mouth-watering. The same could be said for their Marsala Mushroom Pork Chop. The Kobe Burger, made with Wagyu beef, brioche, Cambozola cheese and double-smoked bacon, is impressive. This is a great choice for an


Dining Guide


evening out. You will walk away satisfied, and you’ll understand why it is the go-to place for locals and visitors alike.



Easy As Pie

418 Commercial Ave., Anacortes, 360.899.4001,

September 1, 9 A.M.

A’Town Bistro’s careful sourcing of ingredients, creative approach to food and drinks, and comfortable atmosphere is why it’s about to become your new go-to restaurant. Try the made-to-order clam chowder which features fresh clams served in a house made fume (fish stock), house-smoked bacon, and crusty bread. Pair your meal with something off the seasonally changing cocktail menu. Bitters, shrubs, and syrup are made in house and the creative cocktails are composed by staff or sourced from a collection of vintage bartending books.

Grab some friends and take a class where you’ll learn how to bake a delicious pie with your own hands. With the help of a trained instructor at the King Arthur Flour Baking School, pull out pastry dough and craft a twocrust pie. At the end of the class, instead of a final test, you’ll have a hand-made dessert to take home.

King Arthur Flour Baking School 11768 Westar Ln., Burlington |

COA MEXICAN EATERY Mexican 102 S. 10th St., Mount Vernon, 360.840.1938 214 Maple Ave., La Conner, 360.466.0267

Wine, Cheese and Chocolate Tasting

One way to reel customers in is to offer dollar tacos on Tuesdays and $5 margaritas on Fridays. That’s just the start. One bite of a taco or one sip of a margarita and you’re hooked. Even on a different night, with the choice of fajitas, burritos, chimichangas, or flan, you won’t be disappointed. Fan favorites include the fish tacos with local grilled fish and spicy mango Pico de Gallo, carne asada burrito seasoned to perfection, and tres enchiladas with an addictive green crema sauce. COA Mexican Eatery also offers the last Monday of every month as customer appreciation day, where customers get 50 percent off food. Deals and good food — what more could you want?

Local establishments like Twin Sisters Creamery, Ferndale Farmstead, Chocolate Necessities, Gothberg Farms, and Samson Estates Winery will come together to provide you with an assortment of their products. An array of wines, cheeses, and chocolate are available to be paired perfectly with one another while you take in the sights of the winery in Everson. Relax, mingle, and sample delicious local goods.


September 9, 2 P.M.

Samson Estates Winery 1861 Van Dyk Rd., Everson |

908 Commercial Ave., Anacortes 360.899.5269

Let’s Make Mozzarella!

Anything off the menu is sure to please, but Dad’s Diner’s Texas Philly is a spicy, flavorful take on the classic Philly cheesesteak. What makes Dad’s spins on classic dishes so enticing is owners Fletcher McLean and Neil Stuchal essentially took one-note classics, like the Philly cheesesteak sandwich, and layered in more flavors. Bite into the thick Texas toast sandwich and you’ll taste the well-seasoned roast beef, a hint of spiciness from jalapeño, creamy melted cheese (go with the Jarlsberg), and rich umami from a touch of brown gravy mixed in at the end. Sautéed bits of onions and green peppers make an appearance as well, adding hints of sweetness. It’s anything but one-note, making it a step up from the classic dish.

Appel Farms partners with Marie’s Bees to provide a hands-on class on how to make mozzarella. In a smallclass environment, typically eight students, instructor Marissa Papetti navigates you through the various steps of cheese making. You will get to sample cheese while making your own, the recipe for a gouda time.

September 12, 6 P.M.

Appel Farms 6605 Northwest Dr., Ferndale |

NELL THORN Seafood 116 1st St., La Conner 360.466.4261, Nell Thorn is seafood-heavy, so trying one of their seafood dishes is a must. Usually their daily specials take into account the freshest catches, but on the menu you’ll usually find some kind of seafood pasta, filet topped salad, and oysters. If you can’t settle on a starter, choose the crispy polenta cakes. The quiche is executed well with fluffy eggs and a flaky, light crust, while the no-fuss Nell Burger has simple toppings that don’t overburden the perfectly cooked, juicy meat patty.

Bellingham Brunch on the Bay September 23, 10 A.M. Climb aboard a 1920s sailing yacht, the Schooner Zodiac, as it meanders along Bellingham Bay. You can tour below deck or sit and watch the scenery pass by while the chef whips up a breakfast buffet. Enjoy the cool morning breeze with a steaming cup of coffee to warm your hands. The ship sails at 10 a.m. but arrive early for boarding. Schooner Zodiac 355 Harris Ave., Bellingham |

September 2018 81

THE OYSTER BAR Seafood 2578 Chuckanut Dr., Bow 360.766.6185,

The 202

The Oyster Bar on Chuckanut Drive is perched among towering conifers above the oyster beds. The cozy restaurant is housed in a structure dating from the 1920s that has survived many incarnations. The restaurant owes its reputation to its remote, quintessentially Pacific Northwest setting. But people don’t dine at The Oyster Bar for its location alone. While oysters are the signature offering, The Oyster Bar offers a variety of other fine-dining choices and is known in the Pacific Northwest for its extensive wine cellar.

The Bullfighter Ingredients: Scotch whiskey, sweet vermouth, Cheery Heering Liqueur, orange bitters, orange juice, orange peel, $12


416 1st St., Mount Vernon 360.336.0951, Ristretto doesn’t have a kitchen, but the baristas know their way around a panini press. Ristretto’s filling, made-to-order Turkey Pesto Panini is served on focaccia bread. The warm turkey plays well with sweet slices of tomato and a creamy pesto mayo. You can also order breakfast all day, fresh salad, hearty bagels, or one of the baked goods brought in three times a week from Skagit River Bakery.   SEEDS BISTRO AND BAR American

© Jade Thurston

623 Morris St., La Conner 360.466.3280,


he 202 is Bellingham’s new spot for all-day options: coffee, specialty cocktails, and late-night dancing and DJing. In the spot formerly occupied by Glow nightclub, 202’s floors offer spectacular views of downtown, distinct in the Bellingham bar and lounge scene. One of The 202’s signature cocktails is The Bullfighter. Based on a classic mixed drink called Blood and Sand that dates back to 1930, The Bullfighter packs a powerful punch that’s still smooth enough for a summer evening. Scotch whiskey, sweet vermouth, Cheery Heering Liqueur, orange bitters, and a splash 82

of orange juice mingle to create a vibrant taste, just like the drink’s auburn colors. The Bullfighter is also garnished with an orange peel — but that rind isn’t just for looks. Before being placed in the glass, the peel is lit on fire, adding just a hint of smoky flavor. Between that and the dash of sweet orange juice, the range of your palette will be fully satisfied. The 202 is open from Tuesday to Saturday, with a daily happy hour offering deals such as $2 off drinks.  — Jade Thurston 202 E. Holly St., Bellingham 360.325.6693

From soups to sandwiches, salads or “weeds” as they call them, and bigger entree options, Seeds Bistro and Bar has something for everyone. There’s a carefully curated meat and cheese plate ($21) highlighting cheeses from places like Mt. Townsend Creamery and Acme Farms Cheese. The regularly rotated selections are garnished with candied nuts, crackers, and pickled blueberries from Bow Hill Blueberries. Try one of the seasonal pasta dishes made with fresh pasta, or an order of shucked oysters ($18) topped with a clean, cold horseradish “ice cream.”   SWINOMISH CASINO SPORTS BAR & GRILL American

12885 Casino Dr., Anacortes 888.288.8883, It’s not your run-of-the-mill sports-bar food. Patrons can dine on fried Brussel sprouts studded with tangy dried cranberries ($10) and pan-seared airline chicken breast with honey pecan butter ($17). Sample a light, citrusy-ginger ahi tuna salad ($17) or go the more classic bar-food route with zesty buffalo chicken pizza ($11). The bar’s Italian grinder sandwich features layers of pepperoni, ham, pepperoncini and Italian dressing on a toasted sub roll ($11). Try the incredibly tender grilled hanger steak ($25). The steak soaks for 24 hours in a honey Dijon mustard marinade. For barbecue, go for the half or full rack of dry rubbed ribs ($18 for


A Daily Dose of Trendy Tacos in Bellingham Black Sheep WRITTEN AND PHOTOGRAPHED BY KATE GALAMBOS


he quaint two-story space on West Holly Street, which once housed Goat Mountain Pizza, has been transformed from a place for pies to downtown Bellingham’s newest taco joint, Black Sheep. Goat Mountain owners opened the new restaurant last November, as a self-proclaimed “bar with tacos,” giving it an adults-only attitude with craft cocktails and scratch-made tacos to match. Light, bright and blue, the humbly sized Black Sheep has an intimate atmosphere, great for lunch with friends or a happy hour beverage before a show at the nearby Wild Buffalo or Pickford Film Center. Co-owners Charlie Pasquier and Chas Kubis, opened Black Sheep with the same approach they took to Goat Mountain Pizza years earlier, a devotion to scratch-made, fresh ingredients, Pasquier said. “We wanted to make tacos we could eat every day. Really, we just wanted to eat more tacos,” he says. With homemade tortillas, fresh garnish, and slow-braised meats, each taco tastes and looks like a small masterpiece just waiting to be demolished. The taco list ranges from classic options such as carne asada, topped with salsa verde and a sweet corn salsa, to their unique gyro tacos, which feature your choice of lamb, brisket, cauliflower,


or sweet potatoes. Four dollars for just one taco, $7 for two and $9 for three, it just keeps getting better. Guests who opt for the out-of-the box gyro option will not be disappointed. The lamb and brisket option is smothered in feta, a sweet tomato jam, and drizzled in tzatziki sauce. The sweet potato and cauliflower tacos will make you forget you’ve left out the meat. The crispy veggies are paired with salsa verde and a sweet corn salsa, both made in-house. Black Sheep’s taco list speaks to its name, offering options you might not expect to find at a traditional taco restaurant. “We all have a little bit of black sheep inside all of us that does things a little differently. We took that approach here,” Pasquier says. If you are looking for just a quick bite to go along with your cocktail, the queso nachos are among the most popular menu items, perfect for sharing with friends. As for cocktails, bar manager Brendan O’Neill described the restaurant originals as contemporary concoctions not found easily in Bellingham. While the craft cocktail industry is just beginning to blossom in Bellingham, Black Sheep is sitting at the forefront with recipes designed to find the perfect balance between acidity and sweetness, O’Neill said. “Everything is approachable, easy to drink and fairly accessible,” he said. The “Dude-a-Rita” continues to be a popular option all year round. The cocktail features Lunazul Reposado tequila, triple sec, lemon and lime, for just $6. And no, these margaritas are not blended, they are all poured on the rocks. Black Sheep cuisine can also be found at the restaurant food truck Kid Sister and is available for carry-out from the restaurant as well.  215 W. Holly St., Bellingham 360.526.2109 | September 2018 83


Choosing a Beer: A Mouthful of Tastes Overcoming the Paradox of Choice WRITTEN BY NEAL TOGNAZZINI


hoice is a wonderful thing: it’s what was missing from the American beer world after Prohibition, and it’s what the early craft brewers were fighting for. But choice can also be a terrible thing: too many choices can leave you feeling paralyzed, without a basis for deciding among such a vast array. With daunting beer menus at restaurants these days, you could just go for your “usual” — order whatever IPA they have on tap, perhaps. That would certainly help you avoid paralysis, but only at the cost of becoming a machine, making the same choice no matter the context. A slightly better solution is to ask an expert. Every now and then I get a text from a friend or family member who is dealing with this paradox, and they ask my advice about what beer to order. I appreciate these occasions to challenge my beer knowledge, but of course I’m not always available, and in any case I don’t plan to offer you, dear reader, my cell number. An even better solution is to take a few minutes to learn some very simple, very broad categories of beer so you can decide what you feel like drinking, and then ask the server to tell you what beer fits the bill. Although there are dozens of beer styles and creative variations, for the purposes of selecting quickly and easily we can boil things down to two general decision points. First: What general taste do you want on your tongue? When it comes to beer you have four options here: sweet, sour, bitter, and spicey. (That’s “spicey” as in “tasting of some sort of spice” rather than spicy hot.) Even if you know next to nothing about traditional beer styles, you’ll probably be able to decide which of those four general tastes you want on your 84

tongue at any particular moment. Often the selection will be dictated by what you’re eating: if you just ordered a delicate piece of fish you probably don’t want a bunch of coriander or clove from a witbier or a weizen interfering with your meal. But again, you don’t need to know which beers on the menu would produce these four general tastes; you just need to know what you want to taste, and then ask the server for a recommendation. Second: Do you want to drink fast or slow? Other than the general taste of the beer, the other major consideration is how the beer will feel in your mouth. (In the beer judging world this is called, somewhat awkwardly but logically, “mouthfeel.”) Highly carbonated beers are refreshing and palate-cleansing, high-alcohol beers tend to exude a warm glow and are best drunk slowly, beers that have been brewed with a lazy yeast can feel thick and heavy on the tongue, and so forth. If you are interested in a beer to sip on, then that’ll lead you toward certain mouthfeels. If you are interested in a beer to quaff, that will lead you in a different direction. Knowing your answers to these two questions will often help your server narrow things down to one or two different beers, thus giving you a solution to the paradox of choice. Want a slightly spicey beer you can drink in quantity? Opt for Menace’s Summer of George Weizen. Or maybe a bitter beer you can sip on? How about Wander’s Correspondent Foreign Extra Stout? A sour beer you can crush? Aslan’s Disco Lemonade. This advice won’t always work. (Beer is complicated!) But it’s a good place to start, especially if you’re feeling overwhelmed. Happy (and stress-free) ordering! 

Dining Guide



half, $25 for full). Served with honey horseradish coleslaw, cowboy beans, and a cornbread muffin, it’s a meal that’ll make you think you’re in Memphis.


SAN JUAN CATKIN CAFÉ American 11 Point Lawrence Rd., Olga 360.376.3242, The menu of this Orcas Island eatery may be small, but it is mighty. Breakfast and lunch are served until 3 p.m. Their menu features meat and produce grown on the island, incorporated into dishes such as Baked Eggs in Eggplant, Zucchini in Tomato Stew. Don’t forget about their bakery before heading out — all sweets and baked goods are made in-house.

The following selections have made it past our taste bud test and into our top eight this issue. Step out and give them a try. You won’t be disappointed.


FRIDAY HARBOR HOUSE Regional NW 130 West St., Friday Harbor 360.378.8455, It’s hard to beat the view of the ferry landing, marina and San Juan Channel from Friday Harbor House, the hotel and restaurant elevated over the water to provide a sweeping panorama of water and sky. The restaurant’s new “Brunch on the Bluff” allows you to linger over the view while experiencing island dining at a high level. If you like, you can also have a drink — San Juan Island’s Friday Harbor House is one of the few island restaurants to offer a full bar at brunch every day of the week. New menu offerings include eggs benedict and Belgian waffles, along with pork belly egg fried rice. Tried-and-true favorites include Smashed Avocado Toast and Benton’s Benedict.   PRIMA BISTRO French 201 1/2 First St., Langley 360.221.4060, A quintessential South Whidbey dining ­experience in the heart of Langley, Prima Bistro marries gourmet French cuisine and classic Northwest ingredients. Fried Spanish Marcona Almonds arrive steaming hot, glisteningly crisp and in a glory of flavor — and just in time a glass of Pinot Grigio. The selection of reds and whites offer options for connoisseurs of every stripe, along with a full bar. The Burgundy Snails in Herb Butter taste delightfully creamy, with an uncharacteristically soft, yet enjoyable texture. The Bistro Burger is a juicily grilled patty of Oregon beef, topped with a deliciously thick slice of melted white Cheddar; a burger made in heaven! For fabulous food, elegant ambience, and world-class views, be sure to visit the Prima on your next visit to Whidbey Island.

2 3 4

Mushroom enthusiasts, gather ‘round: Mambo Italiano Cafe in Bellingham’s Fairhaven district does it right. The portabella panini is the perfect comfort sandwich. It includes goat cheese, roasted red peppers and white balsamic vinegar. Waffle fries and mushroom poutine is a match made in culinary heaven. Aslan Brewing Co. in downtown Bellingham tosses in Beecher’s cheese curds, chives and parsley in their waffle fry poutine appetizer. Order a large and you won’t need an entrée. Come for the food, stay for the view on San Juan Island. The Hungry Clam is a local breakfast favorite, offering the best eggs Benedict in Friday Harbor. A healthy serving of Hollandaise sauce accompanied with a side of hash browns will keep you full for a while. Rock and Rye Oyster House in downtown Bellingham has perfected the oyster. Treat yourself to their pan-fried oysters with cabbage slaw and apple ginger dressing. It’s a satisfying balance of salty sea and ginger bite.

5 6 7 8

At Giuseppe’s al Porto Ristorante Italiano on the downtown Bellingham waterfront, diners who order the halibut special get a beautiful almond-crusted halibut cut accompanied by king prawns, tomatoes and mushrooms nestled on a bed of tasty risotto. With a constantly changing and fresh menu, Tweets cafe in Bow is a must-go and their veggie latkes are simply phenomenal. Toss an egg on top (collected from one of Tweets’ “happy chickens”) and a side of a delicious arugula salad for a filling brunch. If the beautiful Chuckanut Drive isn’t enough to get you out of bed on a lazy Sunday morning, the Rhododendron Cafe in Bow, and its fresh biscuits and chorizo gravy at the south end of the trip, will surely help you shake the morning fuzz. Variety is the spice of life, unless you’re at Wanida Thai Cuisine in central Bellingham, where their boat noodles are spicy enough for even the strongest taste buds. Chunks of delicious Thai beef, rice noodles and bean sprouts, simmered in spicy broth, bring out the authentic Thai flavors. — Harrison Amelang

September 2018 85



Entertainment IS OUR GAME!

Rodney Atkins Rob Schneider Arlo Guthrie The Midtown Men Dennis DeYoung Survivor Mavis Staples LeAnn Rimes Wynonna Emmylou Harris Aaron Neville The Marshall Tucker Band Killer Queen John Michael Montgomery Tower of Power Morgane Latouche Vanessa Williams Lonestar Don McLean Grand Funk Railroad Andy Gross The Commodores Pam Tillis Margaret Cho Leann Womack Pablo Fancisco

Lisa Alvardo

Alex Raymundo

Charlie Musselwhite

Melissa Manchester

Heart By Heart

Helen Hong

Owen Benjamin Elton John Tribute Bret Michaels Crystal Gayle Sebastian Maniscalco The Supremes Glenn Miller Revolvers Beach Boys & Friends Johnny Rivers Herman’s Hermits Wilson Phillips Lee Greenwood New Years Eve Party Tony Orlando Doc Severinsen The Coasters Leon Russell 5th Dimension America Toni Tenille Spirit Of Ireland Neil Diamond Trace Adkins Three Dog Night Nitty Gritty Dirt Band Oak Ridge Boys Bill Engval Blood, Sweat & Tears Natalie Cole Michael Bolton Dwight Yokam Keith Urban Leann Rimes Disco Mania Gladys Knight Righteous Brothers Patty Loveless Seattle International


Comedy Competition Ronnie Milsap Dave Mason Joe Diffie Gino Vannelli Joe Nichols Collin Raye The Smothers Brothers Tanya Tucker Australia’s Thunder From Down Under Josh Gracin Rita Coolidge Aaron Tippin Caroline Rhea Rita Rudner Restless Heart Black Hawk Little Texas Vikki Carr Men Of Las Vegas

Debbie Reynolds The Letterman Christmas Show Vegas Pin-Ups

Joan Rivers

The Marshall Tucker Band Heartland Charo The Fab Four Judy Collin Vince Mira Abbacadabra Brenda Lee Larry Gatlin And The Gatlin Brothers Frankie Avalon Petula Clark Hotel California Bruce In The USA Phil Vasser Starship John Reep Dk Morgan America’s Diamond Eddie Money Lorrie Morgan Chicago Tribute Fab Four Tribute Pam Tillis Sawyer Brown Vince Mira Brenda Lee Bruce Hornsby The Turtles Neal Mckoy Ricky Neslon Tribute Little Anthony Richard Marx Lonestar Repp And Ferrara Terri Clark Rockoberfest Survivor Josh Gracin Garrett Wilkins & The Parrotheads Marlin James Henry Cho & Dat Phan Phil Vasser


KBRC Rocks The Skagit Manhattans Debby Boone KAFE Breakfast Club Blue Oyster Cult Tribute Buckaroo Blues Band Rat Pack Tribute Craig Morgan Nathan Anderson Darryl Worley Journey Tribute Mo Trouble Rich Little Blues Traveler Roy Clark Rock And Roll Heaven $5 Fine Jo Dee Mesina Southern Fried Chicks Foghat Broken Trail Delbert Mclinton Fabulous Thunderbirds Timothy Schmitt Super Diamond Smithereens KMPS Country Nights Diamond Rio Barb & Frank Leon Russell Paul Revere Jim Breur John Anderson Joan Osbourne Hells Belles Presidents Of The USA Rockabilly Romp Erick Burdon Gary Puckett Restless Heart Kiss Live

Gin Blossoms Tom Papa

Justin Shandor

Ultimate Elvis

Blue Sky Riders


BJ Thomas

Colin Hay

Peter Noone Rick Springfield The Nylons S. Earle & The Dukes John Conlee Mac King Air Supply Cash’d Out Micky Dolenz Jay White As Neil Diamond Christopher Titus

Burton Cummings

The English Beat

Marty Stuart

Bee Gee’s Gold

C AS I N O • RES OR T • On I-5 at Exit 236 • 877-275-2448 Must be 21 or older with valid ID. Details at Rewards Club. Management reserves all rights. ©2018 Upper Skagit Indian Tribe dba Skagit Valley Casino Resort.


Featured Events · Listings · The Scene · Final Word


Photo courtesy of Bellingham SeaFeast


f you’re a seafood lover, you don’t want to miss this event. Indulge in fresh salmon, grilled oysters, Dungeness crab, seafood boil, and many more delicious foods from the bay and ocean in the third annual Bellingham SeaFeast. More than 10,000 people ate 40,000 servings of seafood at last year’s feast. There is also a walk-the-plank and oyster shucking contests, along with numerous maritime-themed activities for families. Admission is free for this celebration of Bellingham’s maritime heritage, featuring boat rides, and the return of the popular Coast Guard helicopter rescue at sea. Learn knot-tying, filleting, crab cracking, and seafood prep.  Zuanich Point Park 2600 N. Harbor Loop Dr., Bellingham

and giveaways. Oh, and you can win a new car by knocking in a hole-in-one.


Kayak Point Golf Course 15711 Marine Dr. NE, Stanwood 360.652.9626, MEGAN MCCLUNG MEMORIAL RUN SEPTEMBER 8, 8 A.M.

Imagine: Music And Arts Festival

Held in honor of Megan McClung, an avid runner and triathlete who left a lasting legacy in the Oak Harbor community. McClung was killed in 2006 while stationed in Iraq. The benefits from the 1K, 5K, 10K, and half-marathon races will go to the Semper Fi Fund that provides financial aid and other resources to injured soldiers. Fort Nugent Park 2075 SW. Fort Nugent Ave., Oak Harbor





SEPTEMBER 10, 6:15 P.M.

SEPTEMBER 14, 28, 8 P.M.

Opening reception for Lynden exhibit of local and regional textile artists. They display their colorful and unique weaves, stitches, dyes, and felts from Sept. 6 through Nov. 30th. Hosted jointly by the Whatcom Weaver’s Guild and Textiles Studio, artwork from Salish weaver Susan Pavel and tapestry artist Katia Paroczi will be showcased.

To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the Pickford Film Center has been offering showings of its top-100 films for cheap on every other Monday. This heartwarming Swedish film tells a tale of a grumpy widower who makes some unlikely friends. Come see this Academy Award nominee for only $3.

Glide across the waters as you kayak among the sea life of Semiahmoo Bay in northern Whatcom County. You’ll have the chance to see seals, eagles, blue herons, otters, and other coastal wildlife with the Cascade Mountains as your backdrop.

Jansen Art Center 321 Front St., Lynden 360.354.3600, IMAGINE: MUSIC AND ARTS FESTIVAL SEPTEMBER 6–9

It’s an electronic dance music festival nestled in the remote Doe Bay on Orcas Island. Hundreds of performing artists gather, including fire dancers and aerialists, to put on a stunning show among towering Douglas firs. Camp in a tent, motorhome or vehicle. Doe Bay Resort and Retreat 107 Doe Bay Rd., Olga ENDANGERED SPECIES SEPTEMBER 8, NOON

Whatcom Museum in Bellingham kicks off an exhibition covering human interaction and the endangering of biodiversity. Featuring more than 80 works of art from artists around the world, this exhibit sheds new light on the global efforts to keep the life in our world as colorful and diverse as possible. Whatcom Museum 250 Flora St., Bellingham 360.778.8930,


Pickford Film Center 1318 Bay St., Bellingham 360.738.0735,


The Greater Bellingham Running Club is hosting a team and individual running event that winds its way counterclockwise around Lake Padden through rolling wooded hills. With a four-person team, each member will run 2.6 miles. Bring your old running shoes and donate them to the Running Shoe Recycling Program and keep them out of the landfill. Lake Padden Park (East entrance) 4882 S. Samish Way, Bellingham STANWOOD GOLF CLASSIC SEPTEMBER 7, 8:30 A.M.

Bring your clubs and swing away at the 14th annual Stanwood Chamber of Commerce Golf Classic. Held at Kayak Point Golf Course, the scramble format features putting, closest to the pin, and longest-drive contests, along with raffles

Semiahmoo Resort 9565 Semiahmoo Parkway, Blaine 360.318.2009, BELLINGHAM TRAVERSE SEPTEMBER 15, NOON

Ride, run and paddle in this multi-sport solo and tandem relay race through Fairhaven Park, around Lake Padden and over Bellingham Bay. This salmonthemed event, where the runners are called Spawners, is for all levels of athletes, from beginners to serious distance competitors. Boundary Bay Brewery 1107 Railroad Ave., Bellingham 360.739.8458, FAMILY PROMISE BED RACE SEPTEMBER 30, 2 P.M.

Competitors build wackily-themed beds on wheels and push them to victory to help raise money for homeless children and families. Hosted by InterFaith Coalition and its new program, Family Promise of Whatcom County, the 2nd annual event feature spectators voting on their favorite beds before the race begins. Civic Field 1355 Civic Field Way, Bellingham 360.734.3983


Your Financial Future: Will You Be Ready?


Hovander Homestead Park 5299 Nielsen Ave., Ferndale BIRCH BAY DISCOVER DAYS SEPTEMBER 1 AND 2, 10 A.M.

Spend Labor Day weekend watching everything from a grand parade to chainsaw wood sculpture carvings at Discover Birch Bay Days. Wrangle Dungeness crab in the Crab Derby, bring your kids to participate in the Children’s Olympics, and check out unique creations at the Arts and Crafts fair. This celebration is complete with food and craft vendors, live music, and a beer garden.

NY CS 7790428 BC006 01/14 GP10-01505P-N06/10

Susan Rice Financial Planning Specialist Financial Advisor 2200 Rimland Drive, Suite 105 Bellingham, WA 98226 360-788-7005 • 800-247-2884

Tap your feet and clap your hands to local and national bluegrass bands at one of Whatcom County’s favorite parks. Whether you’re a bluegrass lover or just getting into the genre, the festival features different styles and bands that are sure to have you humming along.

© 2014 Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC. Member SIPC.


JOB INFORMATION 7790428/602858172




Retail Byrnes Susan Rice Ad


SPECIFICATIONS 4.75" × 2.25"


4.75" × 2.25" N/A


CREATIVE STUDIO 1585 Broadway 23rd Floor New York, NY 10036 180 Varick Street, 3rd Floor New York, NY 10014








Byrnes, Lesley Mitzner, Julie F013

MODIFIED BY CH AN 01-15-2014, CH AN 01-15-2014




FILENAME: 7790428 Susan Rice_b m1

LAST MODIFIED: January 15, 2014 1:13 PM

Birch Bay Beach Park 7930 Birch Bay Dr., Blaine 360.371.5004, CLASSIC CAR CRUISE-IN AND BREWERS NIGHT SEPTEMBER 7, 6 P.M.

Revel in the beauty of classic American cars at this event held rain or shine in Anacortes at the San Juan Lanes Bar and Grill. Spend Friday night with bowling, beer, and food while enjoying the sight of vintage vehicles — and let the kids play at the arcade. San Juan Lanes Bar and Grill 2821 Commercial Ave., Anacortes 360.293.5185, SAN JUAN ISLAND FARM TOUR SEPTEMBER 9, 10 A.M.

Roll through the breathtaking valleys and pastures of San Juan Island as you stop by Pelindaba Lavender farm, Krystal Acre’s Alpaca Farm, and the San Juan Vineyards, among others. Located in the rain shadow between the Olympic Mountains and Vancouver Island, San Juan Island’s farms produce cheese, meat, wine, sea salt, and lavender, including countless others items. Brickworks 150 Nichols St., Friday Harbor 360.378.0095,

WANT YOUR EVENT POSTED? Events are posted on a first-come first-serve basis. Submissions must be received four weeks prior to the event with all the necessary information. Please submit event name, dates, times, short 40-word description, cover charge or ticket price, event venue including street address, a phone number, and a website. Any event from Seattle to Vancouver will be considered with priority placed on listings from Whatcom, Skagit, and San Juan counties. Bellingham Alive is not responsible for errors in submissions. Please email all submissions to

September 2018 89


More than 2.1 billion people don’t have access to clean water, but Water for People is on a mission to change that. Bertelsen Winery is hosting a Beer and Wine for Water event, benefiting Water for People. All proceeds from ticket sales will go to the non-profit that helps support the development of locally sustainable drinking water resources, sanitation facilities, and hygiene education programs in developing countries. Bertelsen Winery 20598 Starbird Rd., Mt. Vernon FRIDAY HARBOR BIKE-N-BREW SEPTEMBER 15, 11 A.M.

The event begins with the most important meal of the day, breakfast, cooked by the local charity group, The Cutthroat Pirates. After fueling up, hop on your bike and choose one of three routes to explore the backroads of beautiful San Juan Island. At the San Juan County Fairgrounds, local vendors will provide food and microbrews to sample as you chat with your fellow bike-riders into the evening. Biking starts at 11 a.m. and the brew starts to flow at 4 p.m. San Juan County Fairgrounds 849 Argyle Ave., Friday Harbor WAY NORTH COMEDY SHOWCASE SEPTEMBER 16, 7 P.M.

Spend a night of laughter at Farmstrong Brewing Co. in Mount Vernon with four of the Pacific Northwest’s best touring comics. Afterwards, watch a quick-fire open mic featuring local Skagit Valley talent. Enjoy food from Sushi by Chin and alcohol from Farmstrong. Farmstrong Brewing Co. 110 Stewart Rd., Mount Vernon 360.873.8852, BURLINGTON HARVEST FESTIVAL SEPTEMBER 29, 10 A.M.

Fall and Halloween get started early on the banks of the Skagit River in Burlington. Watch pumpkins get tossed into orbit — yes, 1,000 feet in the air — at a pumpkin-hurling competition. Competitors create trebuchets, or medieval catapults, and fling pumpkins at targets stationed throughout the park.


Also offered is a pie-eating contest, pumpkin painting, and pony rides.


Skagit River Park 1100 S. Skagit St., Burlington 360.755.9649,

Sanctioned by the original Blues Brothers organization, Wayne Catania and Kieron Lafferty are coming to Bellingham with the same humor and musical talent as the originals. Backed by the Intercontinental Rhythm and Blues Band, the group will surely get your feet stomping and hands clapping with classics like “Soul Man” and more!


The Tony-winning Broadway musical is coming to Bellingham. When the son of two gay fathers announces his engagement, they are as excited as they are worried; the parents of the bride-to-be are ultra-conservative and on a mission to shut down the local drag clubs. Featuring original music and lyrics from the 1973 production, this heartwarming play teaches acceptance, love, and the importance of family. Performances are Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Bellingham Theatre Guild 1600 H St., Bellingham 360.733.1811 LEGEND OF FRED BECKEY DOCUMENTARY SEPTEMBER 4, 7:30 P.M.

Fred Beckey, a famed mountaineer and author who made hundreds of first ascents on North America’s tallest peaks over the course of seven decades, is highlighted. The film, “Dirtbag: The Legend of Fred Beckey,” is a documentary that shows the grit and determination of a fearless pioneer. Beckey, who died last year, wrote 12 books on mountaineering, offering his expertise on North America’s most remote and least-accessible climbs. Whittier Theatre 100 2nd St. N., Friday Harbor 360.378.3210, AN AMERICAN IN PARIS SEPTEMBER 20, 6 P.M.

Experience the new film version of the Tony award-winning Broadway musical, “An American in Paris.” It was inspired by the 1951 Oscar-winning film. Featuring music from George and Ira Gershwin (and classics like “I Got Rhythm”), come see why this feature has earned a record-setting five stars from critics around the world. PFC’s Limelight Cinema 1416 Cornwall Ave., Bellingham 360.738.0735,

SEPTEMBER 22, 7:30 P.M.

Mount Baker Theatre 104 N. Commercial St., Bellingham 360.734.6080,


Come to Orcas Island and experience organ music at the Moran Mansion at the Rosario Resort, hosted by musician, author, and historian Christopher Peacock. Look through the historic Moran photo collection, listen to Phantom of the Opera played on the 1913 Aeolian organ (with 1,972 pipes), and learn about some of the estate’s more colorful residents. Rosario Resort & Spa 1400 Rosario Rd., Eastsound 360.376.2222 RHYTHM AND BEAUTY SEPTEMBER 30, 3 P.M.

The Whatcom Symphony Orchestra opens its 43rd season with performances from local composer Scott Henderson and renowned violinist Noah BendixBalgley. Come early for a pre-concert lecture about the repertoire by Dr. Ryan Dudenbostel at 2:15, and stay for Whatcom County’s internationallyrecognized orchestra. Admission is free, but seats fill up fast! Mount Baker Theatre 104 North Commercial St., Bellingham 360.734.6080,


Folk and Americana duo JT Nero and Allison Russell are bringing their “secular scripture”-like lyrics to the Pacific Northwest. The husband and wife group have just released their newest

E.P. and will be featuring hits from the first album “Love in Wartime” such as “American Flowers.” Experience a modern, refreshing celebration of life in the Whittier Theatre. San Juan Community Theatre 100 2nd St., Friday Harbor 360.378.3210, ANDREW KASAB

keyboardist Bob Paltrow while sipping your favorite cider. The duo creates a wonderful mix of mid-century jazz and blues, with hints of modern country and soul. With more than 50 years of music combined, Paltrow and Martinet are a talented pair that you have got to see. Bellewood Acres 6140 Guide Meridian Dr., Lynden 360.318.7720,

SEPTEMBER 6, 7:30 P.M.

A veteran performer of over 30 years, come listen to this unique fingerstyle guitarist. Having self-released 11 albums of solo material, Kasab is a master of the guitar, harp guitar and more. His energetic performances include styles in folk, bluegrass, jazz, country, and contemporary acoustic styles. The Conway Muse 18444 Spruce St., Conway 360.445.3000, RUBY FLAMBÉ SEPTEMBER 14, 6 P.M.

Listen to the soulful and unique voice and ukulele of Bailey Ann Martinet accompanied by the eccentric pianist and

Whatcom Artist Studio Tour


The trio of Tracy Neff, Tony Barton and Jerri Mercer are kicking off the Firefly Concert Series at Jansen Art Center in Lynden. Neff and Mercer performed together at Jansen more than five years ago and are back by popular demand. Their new show will feature songs from “Fiddler on the Roof” and “Phantom of the Opera.” Mercer will be featured on the piano with like Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Flight of the Bumblebee” and Gershwin’s “Rialto Ripples Rag.” Chamber Hall 321 Front St., Lynden 360.354.3600,


First 2 weekends in October ✽ Oct. 6,7 & 13,14

Sat Oct 6 2PM & 7PM

Show Sponsor

Sun Oct 21 7:00 pm Season Sponsor

BookNow for BestSeats!


Visit our website for additional information and Google Maps with easy locators for all the studios!

For more info: September 2018 91

AGENDA Top Picks




Historical Museum Auction Orcas Island Historical Museum, Eastsound

Sir Mix-A-Lot Wild Buffalo House of Music, Bellingham




Skagit River Salmon Festival Edgewater Park, Mount Vernon


Embody Love Workshop 3 Oms Yoga, Bellingham




Commercial Street Night Market 1300 Commercial St., Bellingham

Fairhaven Fourth Friday Art Walk Bellingham’s Historic Fairhaven District





21 – 22


Skagit County Garage Sale Skagit County Fairgrounds, Mount Vernon

Bellingham Bay Marathon Start at Lummi Nation and Depot Market Sq.


'Claire de Lune'

Lynden MUSIC Festival




A Pacific Northwest rock ‘n’ roll cover band, The Royal We, led by front man Michael Graham on vocal, jams out to everything from Pat Benatar to The Rolling Stones to The Beatles. The eightmember band plays mainly hits from the 80s, but also mixes in classics from the 60s, 70s and 90s. Skagit Casino Resort 5984 N. Darrk Ln., Bow 877.275.2448,

'Claire de Lune'




Saturday, September 29 10AM-4PM

Harvest Festival



Singer-songwriter Dwight Yoakum, one of the pioneering artists of country music since the 1980s, makes his way to the Tulalip Amphitheatre to belt out some of his 13 top-10 country chart singles. Yoakum joins forces with Joe Nichols, who has five No. 1 singles, as the two put on a country music night to remember. Tulalip Amphitheatre 10400 Quil Ceda Blvd., Tulalip 360.716.6000, THELMA HOUSTON SEPTEMBER 14 AND 15, 8 P.M.

Enjoy the sweet sounds of this hit-maker for two nights only. Thelma Houston is a singer and songwriter who is well-known for her No. 1 hit titled “Don’t Leave Me This Way,” which won a Grammy Award in 1978. She has been performing R&B, soul, and gospel music for more than 50 years and her 90-minute show will feature more than 20 classic Motown songs. Skagit Casino Resort 5984 N. Darrk Ln., Bow 877.275.2448,

Public Viewing in Pit 10AM-11:15AM Opening Ceremony Accuracy and Distance Competition 11:30AM

Pumpkin Painting Activity Booths Pony Rides Innatables Zucchini Car Races

Mighty Fine Vittles from Sublime Food Vendors

Enjoy live music after 2PM

Spend the weekend! Lodging information


Acclaimed blues and gospel singer Jonny Lang will be bringing his world tour to our neck of the woods. Lang has been performing since he was 15 and has had five albums chart in the top 50 of the Billboard 200 chart. He won a Grammy Award for his gospel-influenced album “Turn Around.” On this new tour, Lang will be performing his new album “Signs.”


Tulalip Casino 10200 Quil Ceda Blvd., Tulalip 360.716.6000, September 2018 93

© Robert Falk


Fremont Oktoberfest


Luminata Lantern Parade

stop of his 13-city North American tour. Look out for his No.1 hit single “This is America” that focuses on gun violence and police brutality in the U.S. Rogers Arena 800 Griffiths Way, Vancouver, B.C. 604.899.7400,

SEPTEMBER 7–11, 6 P.M. AND 9 P.M.

Leave reality behind at the International Magicians Gala in the Vancouver Magic Festival. Featuring performers like Aaron Crow and Juliana Chen, watch some of the world’s top magicians as they perform their best stunts and grandest illusions in the Vancouver Playhouse. The intimate setting provides viewers with an up-close look at some of the best — and most shocking — magic being performed. Vancouver Playhouse 600 Hamilton St., Vancouver B.C. 604.665.3050, AN EVENING WITH IRA GLASS SEPTEMBER 22, 8 P.M.

Hear how one of the nation’s most popular radio show hosts came to be. Using music, video, and personal stories, the host of “This American Life” reveals what motivates his creativity, his career highs and lows, and how he has grown to be heard by millions of listeners around the world. Queen Elizabeth Theatre 630 Hamilton St., Vancouver, B.C. 604.665.2193, CHILDISH GAMBINO SEPTEMBER 30, 7 P.M.

The Grammy, Golden Globe and Emmy-Award winning hip-hop artist hits the stage at the Rogers Arena in Vancouver, the final



Welcome autumn with the Fremont Arts Council and their parade around Green Lake. Handmade lanterns are available to create, sell, or simply enjoy. The parade starts at dusk at the Aqua Theater and will move to the Bathhouse. Come for a twinkling, magical night in the heart of the Emerald City. Green Lake Aqua Theater West Green Lake Way, Seattle 206.547.7440, FREMONT OKTOBERFEST SEPTEMBER 21–23

Washington state’s largest beer festival has more than 100 seasonal beers to taste. Along with live music and food trucks, this festival also offers a Dogtoberfest, chainsaw pumpkin carving and a bevy of family activities. Sunday is catered to all ages with root beer tasting, pumpkin decorating and a zucchini race track where you build, decorate, and race your own zucchini against other participants. Bold Hat Productions 3503 Phinney Ave., Seattle

The Scene


BELLINGHAM NORTHWEST WINE FESTIVAL More than 450 attendees — from as far away as Phoenix and as near as British Columbia — came together at the annual Bellingham Northwest Wine Festival Aug. 4 to taste, toast, and raise money for organizations such as Make.Shift Art Space, Our TreeHouse, Growing Alliances, and Lydia Place. Organizers said all proceeds will go toward services that provide resources for homeless families, homeless youth, the promotion of art and music, and support for grieving children. Fifty-three Northwest wineries participated and poured 175 different wines, including Kombucha Town and Stones Throw Brewery, at the event held at the Four Points by Sheraton Bellingham Hotel & Conference Center. Eight Whatcom County restaurants served small plates at the event, including Hundred North and Cosmos Bistro. — Eric Trent © Jonathan Williams, Studio 15 Images

September 2018 95

NOTES Final Word

The Ultimate Mood Killer: Bicycle Seats Loretta Bar-hops with her Girlfriends as the Designated ‘Cyclist’ WRITTEN BY LORETTA W. CLEESE


orget condoms. Throw away birth control. I discovered the ultimate family planning protection — the bicycle, and its 1970s mood ring equivalent, the bicycle seat. Color me black and blue, please. And sore. After 10 miles on my bike, “no” means “hell, no.” Padded or not, the modern bicycle seat is simply not conducive to a healthy sex life. My family planning discovery started innocently enough. Now that I am single again, my girlfriends are determined to end my post-divorce life of self-imposed chastity. I don’t know why. I don’t need their help. With a squirt or two of WD-40, the mental keys to my marital chastity belt will work just fine. Besides, they can’t walk the walk in their own relationships. Apparently, “relationship climate change” is real, and to hear them complain, man-made. Only instead of getting hotter, the temperature ranges from “Better luck next month” to “Let’s wait until your birthday; it’ll be here before you know it.” But I must be a challenge nonetheless because they recently organized a Friday night pub crawl, or as they teased, a “fly-fishing” event, starting in Bellingham and then theoretically ending in pick-up paradise, my hometown of Lynden. WTF, right? I wasn’t amused. I can bait my own hook, thank you very much. Sadly, I eventually relented to their peer pressure, in part because I know that the can of WD-40 in my purse is not infallible. Few things are worse than a broken-off key when you are in a hurry. And as my mother used to say: “Just because something fits, doesn’t mean that it should.” I have no clue to this day what she meant, but I finally took her advice to heart by implementing a back-up plan in case the WD-40 worked. My answer to the unwanted compulsory ladies’ night out was to show up on my bicycle as the designated “cyclist.” I mean, even if I should have a moment of weakness, I was fully protected in the Hobby Lobby sense. What guy is going to say “yes” to the litmus test question: “Is there any room in the back of your car for my bike?” Instantly, any male, drunk or not, will know that he’d better be in the big chain ring or there’s no chance that he can catch me. Only disc brakes can stop a male on the prowl faster than the “bike in the back” conundrum. The confusion on their face is priceless. Plus, my privates were already killing me from the Mother of All Butt Wedges. They made me sign a limited power of attorney before entering the pub, giving them unconditional veto power over all below the waist discretionary physical activities. 96

So, there I stood in pain at our first pub stop, watching the alcohol-induced dating ritual while sober, and looking stunningly sexy in my padded “fly swatter” bike shorts. Men, here’s some unsolicited advice: When a woman has to stand in a bar for over 30 minutes, offer her your bar stool as a courtesy. The best pick-up line may just be kindness. And bar owners, I have a suggestion. If you want to increase profitability, replace your bar stools with bike seats. Your turnover rate will quadruple. But I digress. Within an hour, the guys’ shirt sleeves were rolled up, and shirt buttons went on strike. Testosterone was everywhere. About every half hour, small packs of women would go, en masse, to the restroom to reapply lipstick and perfume to all body parts, including their cleavage. I’m sorry. My boobs don’t smell badly, and I don’t need perfume to enhance their attractiveness. They may sag a bit after two kids and forty years of gravity, but they are just curious. They want to see where they are going. Here’s a rhetorical question: What guy has ever complained about smelly boobs? I can count them on one middle finger. As I watched with amusement, three younger men sitting at the bar started a conversation with my group of mostly moms. One of the three saved what he thought was his absolute best pick-up line just for me: “What’s a MILF like you doing here?” Huh? After a quick Google search, I deflected the youthful, but misplaced attempt at flattery and shut him down quickly: “Looking for a baby-sitter for my two preschool kids. You don’t babysit, do you?” At this point, the conversation turned to awkward silence, his big chain ring went to a little chain ring, and his derailleur completely stopped working. He was badly in need of a mechanic. Sometimes the opposite sex simply needs to recognize when there’s a 12 percent uphill grade ahead with more switchbacks than Galbraith Mountain or L’Alpe d’Huez. Really, guys? Who needs bicycle seats with pickup lines  like that? • I-5 Exit 260 • Ferndale, WA

You want a sports car. You need an SUV. And you have just one garage space left. Checking two boxes has never been less of a concession. The utility and amenities for the everyday combined with the heart-pounding sports car performance that will make your day. It’s the best of both worlds. Only better. Porsche. There is no substitute.

The sport car dream, now reality. The Macan.

Š2018 Porsche Cars North America, Inc. Porsche recommends seat belt usage and observance of traffic laws at all times. European model shown. Some options may not be available in the U.S.

Porsche Bellingham 2200 Iowa Street Bellingham, WA 98229 Tel: (360) 734-5230