Angie Costani says her family's roots in Lynden's annual Raspberry Festival, which runs Friday and Saturday, July 18-19 in downtown Lynden, extend back to some of the earliest days of berry-farming in Whatcom County.
Her family currently owns and operates a fourth-generation farm growing strawberries, raspberries and blueberries.
"The Curt Maberry 3-on-3 Basketball Memorial Classic honors my dad, who was a huge supporter of athletics and athletes in Lynden," Costani says.
Maberry died in 2007.
Costani says the county's raspberry harvest is not only one of the largest in the state and the nation; it's one of the largest in the world.
She says she has always enjoyed the festival because it brings the community together.
"As word gets out from year to year, the whole event gets bigger and better," she says.
Matt Corey, sales and marketing manager at Samson Estates Winery, says this is the winery's third year at the festival, and he plans to be there pouring wine.
Corey, who has lived in Bellingham for about 22 years, says the festival celebrates a tasty farm item that is a major contributor to the local and regional economy.
"It's unique in that it is allowing the consumer to try the product in a variety of multiple forms," he says.
Samson Estates will be offering two tastings for a $1, and people can choose from Delilah Raspberry (the official festival wine), riesling or syrah.
A share of proceeds from the sale of bottles of wine will benefit Lynden Chamber of Commerce and the Curt Maberry Basketball Tournament, Corey says.
Blake Starkenburg, who has helped organize the Razz and Shine car show and is president of Lynden's Downtown Business Association, says he loves seeing the classic cars - up to 200 of them - on tree-lined Front Street every year.
Costani says the festival has changed for her with the passage of time.
"At one point I was playing in the 3-on-3 basketball, and now I'm watching my boys and nephew play," she says. "Crazy, but yet so great to see the next generations on the court. The level of basketball played keeps getting better and better and, more importantly, everyone's having a good time!"
NORTHWEST RASPBERRY FESTIVAL
Where: Friday and Saturday, July 18-19.
Where: Downtown Lynden.
Attractions: Sample luscious raspberries and ice cream, enjoy jazz music, and cheer on your favorite 3-on-3 basketball team. On Saturday, enjoy those activities plus street vendors, prize giveaways, a raspberry pancake breakfast, a classic car and truck show, and a fun run.
Details: lynden.org, 360-354-5995.
Reach Margaret Bikman at 360-715-2273 or email@example.com.