Time to submit your listings for holiday bazaars


Every year for the past several years, I've compiled the annual listing of bazaars taking place in Whatcom County during the holiday season.

Here's the scoop for this year:

The Bellingham Herald invites nonprofit organizations offering homemade crafts and foods in Whatcom County to participate in our free annual holiday bazaar guide.

The 2013 Bazaar Guide will publish in The Bellingham Herald on Sunday, Oct. 27. Your bazaar will also appear in Take Five on the Thursday before it takes place.

To be included, please enter your event in our online calendar by Friday, Oct. 18.

You need to be a registered user of our website to post something to the calendar. If you haven't registered, go to this webpage to register.

Once you register, an email will be sent to you at address you registered with. You need to click on the link in that email to confirm you want to register.

Once you've registered, you go to the calendar at our calendar page, click on the "add to our listings" link and then click on "Create an Event."

Be sure to select the category "Bazaar" and enter the times and dates of your event, as well as the charity the proceeds will benefit, in the "event description" field.

Once you fill out the form and submit it, we will approve the event - usually within one business day. You'll get an email confirming that your event has been accepted. That email will also contain a direct link to your submission, should you want to change it.


I spoke with Mitchell Kahn, general director of the Skagit Opera, at a recent meeting of the Bellingham Festival of Music (he's also on that board; more about that meeting in a future column), about Skagit's upcoming production of Verdi's "Rigoletto" this weekend and next at McIntyre Hall at Skagit Valley College in Mount Vernon.

Mitch has assembled a brilliant young cast: New York City Opera tenor Ryan McPherson as the Duke; Yuseok Oh as the hunchback jester, Rigoletto; and Mount Vernon's Courtney Ruckman as his daughter, Gilda.

The production also features Western Washington University students Nathaniel Voth and Danielle Bayne.

Mitch and I talked of the reluctance of those who say they like most music but they avoid opera, perhaps because they think it's hard to understand (like Shakespeare).

Mitch says that "even if you think you don't like opera, go see 'Rigoletto!'"

The universal storylines of seduction, betrayal and scandal speak to all ages and all walks of life.

Plus it has lots of catchy tunes. Here's a clip - yes, it's from "Grand Theft Auto" - with one of the opera's best arias:

Mitch also encourages people to come to the opening night dinner on Friday, to spare the anxiety of rushing through dinner to get to McIntyre Hall on time (it's only 30 minutes from Bellingham, anyway!).

Tickets are on sale at the McIntyre Hall box office 360.416.7727 or go to mcintyrehall.or. There are discounts for students (at the box office only.)


My poetic friend, Bellingham's Sue Erickson, recently celebrated her birthday, and is also celebrating the publication of FutureCycle Press Works' anthology for Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani student and activist who was shot in the head and neck in an assassination attempt by Taliban gunmen in 2012. (She has since recovered and was nominated for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.)

Sue has a poem, "Given Fire, Given Water," in the anthology, which was released on Oct. 9, the anniversary of Malala's shooting.

Here's an excerpt of her poem:

"Our task is to be as resourceful as cornflowers.

Haven't you seen how a whole field of blossoms

can crowd out the thistles of fearful voices?"

Congratulations to Sue. For more on the anthology, go to futurecycle.org.


The community poetry reading series, SpeakEasy, will dedicate its next event to the poetry of the war experience. If you are a veteran, or have a friend or family member who is a veteran, and have a poem you would like to read at this event that relates to your experience, submit it to othermindpress@gmail.com by the extended deadline of Oct. 27.

Poems should be no more than two pages long and should take no more than 3 minutes to read. The poem may be an original poem by the reader, or a relevant poem written by another author. Approximately 30 poems will be selected to be read. Selection priority will be given to poems based on personal experience rather than generalized concepts about war.

The reading, SpeakEasy 12, will be held at 7 pm, Sunday, Nov. 10, at the Firehouse Performing Arts Center. If you submit a poem for consideration, it will be assumed that you will be available to read at the event and that your name can be used in promotions. SpeakEasy readings are always free, with donations gladly accepted to help pay for cost of the venue.

Behind the Scenes focuses on the people who make the arts and entertainment world of Whatcom County happen.

Reach Margaret Bikman at 360-715-2273 or margaret.bikman@bellinghamherald.com. Follow Bellingham Entertainment on Facebook or @bhamentertainme on Twitter.

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