The Historic Fairhaven Festival has been known by a variety of names throughout its 34-year run.
In the beginning, it was an offshoot to the finish of the Ski to Sea Race. As the race evolved and grew in popularity, the festival became known locally as the eighth leg of the race. The festival actually never was a part of the race. But the phrase “It All Ends in Fairhaven” is still a name many use for the festival.
While the race itself ends in Marine Park, it is celebrated in the heart of historic Fairhaven.
The free, family-friendly event runs from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on race day, in the southside neighborhood. All monies raised stay in Fairhaven to help preserve and promote the historical culture of the community.
Hilary Friedrich, who is treasurer of the Historic Fairhaven Association and marketing and co-chair for the festival, says that more than 100 craft and food vendors will occupy 11th Street between Mill and McKenzie avenues and on Harris Avenue from 11th Street to about Ninth Street.
“You can nosh on kettle corn, barbecue, brats, steak sandwiches, gyros, fresh squeezed lemonade and corn dogs – just to name a few; all of the old favorites and a few that are new,” she says.
Kids have a great time playing at the jump around zone and with bubble machines, as well as having their faces painted at vendors near the Village Green.
Live music fills the air at the main stage located at 11th and McKenzie, adjacent to the popular beer garden, which opens at noon.
Ride the bus
Whatcom Transportation Authority will run extra buses on Route 14 between Western Washington University and the festival in Fairhaven, since parking is limited.
Free parking will be available at WWU’s Lot C, located on Bill McDonald Parkway at West College Way. Buses will depart from a bus shelter at Bill McDonald Parkway at WWU Rec Center, on the west side of Bill McDonald Parkway approximately every 15 minutes beginning at 11:30 a.m. The last extra departure to Fairhaven will be at 7:15 pm. After 7:15 pm, Route 14 returns to its regular schedule. Riders can catch Route 14 to Lot C from the shelter at 12th Street and McKenzie Avenue (near Haggen), at 8:21, 9:21 and 10:21 p.m.
Riders also can catch Route 1 between Downtown Bellingham and Fairhaven. Route 1 departs every 30 minutes on Ski to Sea Sunday, from 7:40 a.m. to 8:05 p.m.
Riders pay $1 per trip. All valid WTA bus passes will also be accepted.
For information on reaching other Ski to Sea festivities using regular bus service, call 360-676-RIDE (6433) or visit ridewta.com.