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The return of the Hog: Downtown Bellingham eatery reopens with some changes

The Copper Hog is back with a few new changes that may appeal to gastropub fans.

The restaurant at 1327 N. State St. opened on Feb. 12 after being closed for nearly a year. Along with the gastropub fare that people might associate with the Copper Hog, it will also have some Hawaiian inspired items on the menu, said Patrick Mullen, general manager.

While there are plenty of similarities to the previous Copper Hog, they’ve also made some improvements for sports fans, Mullen said. That includes adding a 10-foot projector screen and larger televisions.

“Supporting soccer fans and sports fans in general was paramount in design,” said Mullen, who has worked on restaurant openings in Hawaii and helped design the Culture Cafe at Kombucha Town in the Herald Building. “It is our goal to be the single best place to watch sporting events locally.”

The kitchen was also expanded and is now opened up so that the public can see what’s going on. The lounge bar area has also expanded, he said.

The restaurant is open every day from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Details can be found on its Facebook page.

RETAILERS RUNG UP BIG SALES LAST SUMMER

Whatcom County retailers continued to ring up sales last summer, setting another record for the third quarter.

According to data from the Washington State Department of Revenue, $1.14 billion was spent in Whatcom County during the third quarter, a 10.3 percent increase compared to a year earlier. It was the highest quarterly total ever for Whatcom County.

Retail trade, which focuses on products sold in stores, totaled $501 million, a 9.2 percent annual increase.

It appears much of the growth continues to come from local residents or from people south of Whatcom County. Sales of vehicles and parts jumped 14.1 percent in the past year, while building materials rose 10.6 percent. Even big box store sales, which is usually influenced by cross-border shoppers, rose 6.8 percent. During the third quarter the Canadian dollar experienced a bit of a rebound, spending much of the time above 80 cents compared to the U.S. dollar.

Sales at restaurants totaled $96.9 million during the third quarter, a 5.1 percent annual increase.

OTHER TIDBITS

Twin Sisters Brewing Company has submitted its state liquor license application as it works to put in a microbrewery at 508 Carolina St., in the Sunnyland neighborhood. ... A sign permit application was submitted for Nature Spa, a foot and body massage business going in at Bakerview Square. ... A new restaurant is in the works at the former Real McCoy space at 114 Prospect St. It’s called Saltine Bellingham and owner Craig Serbousek said they are aiming for an April 1 opening. He also said they are looking for some experienced people to work both the front and back of the restaurant. For information, send an email to SaltineBellingham@gmail.com. ... Downtown Bellingham will have plenty of free local music March 2-4 as What’s Up! magazine celebrates its 20th birthday. Details about who is playing where can be found on the What’s Up! Facebook page. ... Captain Bellingham has opened at 300 North Samish Way, next door to Boomer’s Drive-In. According to reviews on Yelp, the menu includes fish and chips, calamari, oysters and Philly cheese steak sandwiches. ... Whatcom Land Title announced on its Facebook page that it was planning to open an office at Birch Bay Square next month. ... A new art gallery will have a grand opening on March 2. Ruckus Art Gallery is at 228 E. Maple St., near the Depot Market Square. According to its website, Ruckus will offer a variety of furniture, lighting, jewelry, bags and the occasional vintage relic.

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