Columns & Blogs

Jansen Art Center has free music Thursdays in piano lounge

I chatted with Victor Pruner, who has taken on the responsibility of booking music for Thursday evenings in the piano lounge at Jansen Art Center in Lynden.

“We want people in our beautiful Pacific Northwest to take advantage of the free evening concerts at the Jansen,” he says. “We offer food and beverages for sale and a comfortable setting to enjoy free music and view outstanding art on the walls of the ‘J.’ Personally, I like to consider the ‘J’ as the jewel of downtown Lynden, a place where friends, family gather and socialize.”

Here’s what’s on the schedule at the “J:”

▪ July 30: Duo Lido, violinist Gaye Davis and accordionist Terhi Miikki-Broersma, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

In August, the hours change to 5 to 7 p.m.

▪ Aug. 6: Eric and Anissa, playing jazz. A public reception for an exhibit by instructors from the Association of Northwest Weavers’ Guild starts at 6 p.m.

▪ Aug. 13: Andy “Badd Dog” Koch, playing blues.

▪ Aug. 20: Wendy Donaghy, singing operatic selections

▪ Aug. 27: Jeffrey Fullner, aka “Elvis”

Details:, 360-354-3600.

Pickford has accommodations for deaf, visually impaired

A few months ago, Lindsey Gerhard, marketing manager at Pickford Film Center, let the public know that the center now has accommodations at both the Pickford and at Limelight that bring a richer cinematic experience to people who are deaf, hard-of-hearing or visually impaired. The upgrades were made possible, in part, from support from Bellingham Central Lions Club, Harborview Lions Club, and Fairhaven Lions Club.

There are two captioning options for people who are deaf, she says. The first is closed captioned receivers, goose-neck boxes that can be placed in a seat’s cup-holder and are adjustable for viewing purposes. The second option is closed caption headset receivers, which operate as glasses that project a caption box superimposed into the view of the wearer.

The headphones are unique in how they offer a better, isolated soundtrack, Gerhard says, and offer a loop option for people who have telecoils in their hearing aids or cochlear implants.

In addition, Pickford offers offers the option of a visual narrative of films for people who are visually impaired.

Gerhard says that even though Pickford projectors are compatible with the new devices, the use of captioning devices and visual narrative devices are limited to films that allow such accommodations. It’s up to the studio or filmmaker to embed films with closed captioning and descriptive audio functions, so not all films have those enhancements.

Details:, 360-647-1300

WSO season brochures delayed

Ramona Abbott, marketing manager for Whatcom Symphony Orchestra, told me that the season brochure mailing has been delayed, so the deadline for subscribers to purchase tickets and retain their seats has been extended to Aug. 8. Single tickets go on sale Aug. 17.

The 40th anniversary year begins with a gift to the community: a series of four free chamber music concerts in intimate settings. From Whatcom Museum’s Old City Hall Rotunda Room to a private home in Acme, WSO ensembles will perform a wide range of chamber repertoire.

▪ Aug. 13, 12:30 p.m., Rotunda Room, Old City Hall.

▪ Aug. 23, 3 p.m., Dance Barn, Sudden Valley.

▪ Sept. 5, 3:00 p.m., Jansen Art Center, Lynden.

▪ Sept. 20, 3:00 p.m., Bakke Home, near Acme.

To find out what’s coming up for the symphony’s 40th season, go to or To become a member, call Mount Baker Theatre, 360-734-6080.

Reach Margaret Bikman at 360-715-2273 or