I recently received this letter from Vernon Greenstreet, president of Mount Baker Theatre Organ Society:
"We're writing to notify you that the Mount Baker Theatre Organ Society organization has been dissolved.
The theater is in the process of acquiring the Wurlitzer three-manual console being donated from the estate of Andy Anderson. Additionally, all remaining assets have been transferred to Mount Baker Theatre.
All contributions made to MBTOS with the intent of digitizing and improving the organ will be honored. The three-manual console will greatly enhance the organist's capabilities regarding super quick registration changes, which is so important both in concert performance as well as accompanying the silent films. MBT will make sure the work is completed. It is our intent to continue maintaining and performing the organ. All restricted funds will be allocated as intended.
Saturday, Aug. 11, we will hold an end-of-summer picnic to celebrate MBTOS one last time and to update everyone on the upgrade to the organ, which is scheduled to take place this summer. The event will be at noon at the home of Al Stratton, 1746 Kelly Road (phone 398-2581). Al will provide a protein dish; please bring a dish to share.
We will also have a concert at MBT to hear the three-manual organ and to recognize the Anderson family who contributed it to us. We're sure you will also be happy to hear that MBT will continue to have organ concerts periodically and will continue to maintain the organ.
Thanks to Mount Baker Theatre Organ Society for the years of support. Mount Baker Theatre looks forward to continuing the relationship with MBTOS friends in this new structure."
It's a rather sad transition for the organization, which was founded in 1983 as the Peace Arch Organ Society. The organization's main charge was to preserve and promote the organ. The Wurlitzer was delivered shortly before the theater opened in 1927, and is one of only a few theater organs remaining in the Pacific Northwest.
The monthly concerts hosted by the MBTOS were usually held by donation and featured a roster of regional organists, young and old.
'MOUNTAIN RUNNERS' INVITED TO VANCOUVER FILM FESTIVAL
David Lowrance is proud that "The Mountain Runners," the film for which he is one of the associate producers, has been invited to screen at the Vancouver (B.C) International Film Festival, which runs Sept. 27 through Oct. 12.
Lowrance told me that the festival sent the invitation directly to the creators of the film, who include Steve Nelson, Todd Warger, Brian Young and Rene Sherrer-Daly. (No one from the film had entered the competition.)
The film premiered in May at Pickford Film Center and was also screened at Lincoln Theatre in Mount Vernon, where it returns by popular demand at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 18. Pretty Little Feet - Matt Novak and Allegra Ziffle - who recorded the soundtrack for the film, will play before the film's 7 p.m. show time (http://prettylittlefeet.net).
"The Mountain Runners" is a documentary about of the Mount Baker Marathon, and features a cast of local and regional actors who re-enact the race, which was held for three years, 1911 through 1913. The film is full of historical details about the civic leaders and race officials, the runners, and the community in the early days of what is now the Ski to Sea Race.
One of the largest film festivals in North America, the 31st annual Vancouver festival will feature about 250 features and 100 shorts at 10 theaters to an expected audience of 150,000. In addition to featuring major East Asian and nonfiction films, the festival aims to represent the best in alternative and feature filmmaking from around the world each year.
READY YOUR PUSH-KART FOR LYNDE 500
It's time to start building your push-kart for the 10th annual Lynde 500, the race-in-the-street held on Labor Day (Monday, Sept. 3) in downtown Lynden. The event, a fundraiser for Lynden Pioneer Museum, is open to four-member adult teams, with a special youth division for youths 12 through 14.
People can purchase a build-it-yourself kart kit, and pre-built karts are also available. All karts must be inspected by Sept. 1.
Race volunteers are needed. For details, including race specifications, call Tom Entrikin or museum director Troy Luginbill at 360-354-3675, or go to lyndenpioneermuseum.com.
ABOUT BEHIND THE SCENES
Behind the Scenes focuses on the people who make the arts and entertainment world of Whatcom County happen. It appears in Take Five, The Bellingham Herald's entertainment section, each Thursday. Margaret Bikman is the Entertainment News Coordinator at The Bellingham Herald.
Reach MARGARET BIKMAN at email@example.com or 715-2273.