BONW 2020 Voting Open

The 2020 Best Of The Northwest readers choice awards is BACK! Voting opens July 1st and will continue through August 5th in the 11th consecutive contest presented by Bellingham Alive Magazine! To vote in this years contest visit the BONW 2020 Voting page here. 

Take a Hike

East of downtown Bellingham just over the Alabama Street hill unfolds sprawling Lake Whatcom—the city’s vast drinking water reservoir ringed by lakefront homes, parkland and an inviting 6.2 miles easy trek into the wilderness. As you arrive at the trailhead at the far side of the lake, urban Bellingham fades away, and Lake Whatcom Park beckons. On…

Don’t come home without a mammoth, dear!

Ken (and Loretta) offer their post- Winter Olympic Games thoughts to increase viewership Every two years, we celebrate the world’s athletes, their incredible stories of sacrifice, and the spirit of Olympic competition. Once upon a time — back before cell phones and the internet—the whole world tuned in. Now, not so much. Why? Well, as all her readers know, my alter-ego, Loretta, is a marketing genius. Together, we were retained last week to answer just that…

Fried and Unapologetic Fat Shack

Between the name and the marketing slogan: “Fat Shack—Late Night Done Right” there’s little question to whom this new restaurant, open as late as 3 a.m., is targeted. Popular items are burgers, wings, and their densely packed specialty sandwiches, some with names a party animal would chortle over (“Fat Doobie” and “Fat Hangover,” for example.) The typical “fat” sandwich is some combination of grilled steak and fried chicken, along with melted cheese and a host of sides,…

Lasting Image

What is your favorite thing to take pictures of? My favorite subjects are in the sky: stars, comets, eclipses, the sun and moon. But being a night sky photographer in the cloudiest city in the continental United States can be challenging, so I also spend a significant time photographing wildlife. What do you do when you…

Updating with Charm and Style

When you find the perfect house —it’s got a beautiful view, a great lot, lots of space for three growing girls, and in the desired location —but it’s lacking charm and…

Cascadia Womens Film Fest Returns

Last month was Women’s History Month, but we don’t have to stop celebrating just because it’s April. The second annual Cascadia International Women’s Film Festival is April 12–15 at Pickford Film Center in downtown Bellingham. This festival screens…

Friends of the Forest

Many residents in Anacortes are lucky enough to live within walking distance to some of the city’s 2,800 acres of forests. With rapid real estate development engulfing much of the city, we…

Medical Aesthetics, Explained

Doctor Answers Questions About Growing Industry Increasingly, older Americans are looking in the mirror and unhappy with what they see: Scars, skin laxity, wrinkles, moles, liver spots, excess fat, cellulite, unwanted hair, skin discoloration, and spider veins top the list of complaints. As skin worries grow, so have new ways to treat them (think Botox) and new places to seek help. Once mainly the purview…

Hard-to-Kill Plants

So, you’ve never muddied your hands with garden soil. You can never remember what a perennial is. You’ve drowned or deprived all your past plants. Do not despair. Below is a list of some of the hardiest, low-maintenance plants you can put in the ground. These, according to the experts, are harder to kill than cultivate. Once rooted, these toughies are here to stay. Of course, as with all plants you’re thinking of adding,…

Tugging at the Heart

Lil’ Tugs Children’s Boutique 713 Commercial Ave., Anacortes 360.299.2350 | liltugskids.com THE SHOP Since its opening in July 2016, Lil’ Tugs Children’s Boutique has become a community favorite. The darling shop carries toys and clothing for newborns through eight years old. Inspired by the Anacortes tugboat town culture, the store features a child-sized tugboat perfect…

Vinostrology Shines As Downtown Bellingham Wine Bar And Lounge

Wine Bar Extraordinaire Bellingham native Katie Bechkowiak had plenty of experience in the restaurant and wine industries when she began toying with the idea of opening up…

The Mixing Tin – The Brandied Cherry Collins

When you walk into The Blue Abode Bar in Barkley Village, it feels like you are home —even though it’s new to the neighborhood. A cozy spot for cocktails, it has a wood bar, tables are accented with blue paint, and chairs and blue lights line the walls. On each table, empty spirit bottles with twinkle lights on the inside provide a…

A Bubbly Business for Downtown Snohomish

Lather & Salt Tucked — almost squeezed — neatly between Antique Warehouse and Roger’s River View Bistro on Snohomish’s main drag is a delicious bath and body shop. Though it only occupies about 75 square feet of space on downtown First Street, Lather & Salt smartly fills every nook with odoriferous goodness. Chemical-free soap and personal care product lovers will rejoice at the decadent bath bars, bath salts and skin balms only an arm’s reach away, no…

A Guiding Force for Education

After 22 years as Western Washington University’s director of communications, Lynne Masland has now committed herself to becoming a connector of the community. As she describes it, she is an elder of Whatcom County, responsible for building a web of support in the community. Since she retired, Masland has been constructing her web as an author, board member of the Whatcom Community College Foundation, leader in the Bellingham Sunrise Rotary Club, and aspiring painter. She has also turned…

Meet the Chef

Chef Todd Alan Martin of Hundred North hosted his German-inspired dinner on Thursday, February 22 at Judd & Black Appliance in Mount Vernon. The four-course meal was full of comfort foods from parsnip soup to chocolate cake, each with its own flair and elegance. Martin’s attitude was laid-back, straight-forward, and far from over the top. His philosophy for cooking stemmed from a love of…

FIVE FAVES DOCKS & PIERS

THE PIERS AT LA CONNER MARINA The piers at La Conner Marina see all different kinds of boaters from commercial, recreational and marine connected businesses….

Wellness Centers

In recent years, health and wellness centers are catering to clients who want far more than feel-good country spas and or challenging exercise adventures. Centers today offer approaches once considered unconventional, but now more mainstream, like acupuncture, natural medicines, and hypnosis. This is the first in a series of stories telling how we can make our lives better through therapies that don’t involve medication. For each, we will list the…