Here ya go – bars that will be open Christmas Day/Night, listed in order of opening time. The Wild Buffalo and Cap’s will both have karaoke tonight, with Aireekah Laudert and Zach Zinn as the respective hosts.
The stretch of North State Street dubbed the Alley District has seen a lot of change in the past decade. The neighborhood that was once home to a revolving cast of scrappy shops and arts ventures anchored by the Hub Community Bike Shop is now dominated by condos and apartment blocks. And Honey Moon, which spent that decade serving up mead in the Alley District, is making changes, too. Yummy, boozy changes.
Honey Moon opened in 2009 as a meadery – think a brewpub for mead, a honey-based brew that is one of the oldest alcoholic drinks. The term “honeymoon” is derived from the ancient tradition of celebrating the first month, or moon, of a new marriage by getting blotto with your bae on mead brought by the wedding guests. Honey Moon brews its meads – and ciders – on site. (We reviewed a flight of Honey Moon’s meads back in 2014.)
The recent addition of spirits – reflected in the new “Alley Bar” tagline – opened the door for a roster of cocktails that craftily combine mead with liquor and more traditional mixers, including house-made flavored sodas like root beer and turmeric ginger ale. I couldn’t tell you what turmeric tastes like, but I can certainly tell you that Honey Moon’s ginger ale makes a damn fine whiskey ginger.
The food menu has expanded, too. Happy hour food specials center on $5 whiskey-cider-cheese fondue served with house-made bread, and free bar snacks: snickerdoodle fortune cookies, sweet and salty popcorn and curry pork rinds. (If that last bit sounds familiar, it’s because the wizard behind this kitchen curtain is Michelle Schutte, who instituted a similar happy hour giveaway during her tenure at Redlight.) Happy hour is Monday-Saturday 5-7pm, and you also get a buck off all drinks.
If you’re craving sturdier fare, there are small plates priced from $5 to $8, including a daily soup and salad, pulled pork with locally made Hosa hot sauce, Spanish-style meatballs, baked chevre, and more.
This is the last Night Market of the season, and it’s gonna be a doozy. Bike polo, sea shantys, a climbing wall, and karaoke, alongside local vendors and the Uisce beer garden. Friday from 6pm-10pm on Commercial Street between Magnolia and Holly.
Indivisible is throwing a party, and you’re invited! Grab a brew at the beer garden and chat with the candidates and reps from organizations tabling the event. There’ll be music and dance, and you can even register to vote. Sunday 1pm-3pm at Depot Square Market.
I like it, I love it! Bay area rapper and “serial collaborator” Lyrics Born always puts on a great show, full of melodic funk. He’s touring in support of a new album, Quite a Life, and supported by Seattle hiphop collective All Star Opera and fellow California veteran Bukue One. Sure to be a sweaty good time. Sunday 9pm at the Wild Buffalo.
Lost Giants Cider is hosting Sippin’ on Cider, a festival to benefit Shifting Gears. There’ll be nine cideries participating, plus food trucks, music, outdoor living rooms, games, and a photo booth. $25 at the door gets you all that, an 8 ounce tasting glass, and three fill-ups. Friday, 6pm-10pm, 1200 Meador Ave.
Waterfront music booker and N7E Records founder Robby Cleary died unexpectedly this week. This would have been a great show in any event, but now it’s also a chance to honor the memory of a true and tireless punk believer. Waterfront Tavern, 521 Holly St., Saturday at 9pm, $7.
Go up the country and learn “practical new-fangled and old-timey skills. Bee keeping, yarn spinning, native plant foods, fermentation, gardening wisdoms, livestock care, food preservation and much more.” There’ll be hourly classes and a field to barter your stuff in, plus music, food and beer. Admission is $20 a day or $35 for both days, and you can camp Saturday night for an extra $10. Saturday/Sunday, 10am-5pm, on north Lake Whatcom at 2582 North Shore Rd.
Never mind the thermometer – the truth is, summer is slip-slidin’ away. Fortunately for those of us who spent the past couple of months hiding in darkened rooms, there’s still time to experience Bellingham’s seasonal outdoor markets (the OG Downtown Farmers Market at Chestnut and Railroad runs year-round). Find our local markets below, listed in order of time left to get your butt over there before they wrap up for the season.
Fairhaven Farmers Market Wednesdays through August, 3pm-7pm at 10th and Mill (map).
The Downtown Farmers Market’s chill little sister features fresh local produce arrayed under the shady pergolas that ring the Fairhaven Village Green’s sunny lawn. There’s live music from 4-6, making it a lively spot for a midweek picnic.
The Barkley Market Wednesdays through August, 11am-6pm at Barkley Village (map)
The northeast side shopping-center-slash-office-park livens up the workweek with a Wednesday market offering food trucks and lawn games from 11am-2pm, mini farmer’s market 4pm-6pm.
Birchwood International Market Last Fridays through September, 6pm-10pm at Park Manor Shopping Center aka Old Albertson’s (map)
No doubt folks in Birchwood, part of the city’s largest food desert, would rather have a grocery store. But since Albertson’s hasn’t released its death grip on their old store location even now that they’ve sold it, residents will make the most of this neighborhood market with craft vendors, food trucks, and music in the meantime.
While Bellingham proper is home to a few urban farms, most of the produce you’ll see at markets comes from farms in the rural areas surrounding the city. These community markets get you even closer to the source.
Ferndale Farmers Market
Fridays, 3pm-7pm through October 5 at Centennial Riverwalk Park (map)
In addition to a weekly bounty of local eats and goods, you’ll find a monthly flea market here on September 14 and October 5.
Food trucks are like the craft breweries of Bellingham grub on the go – they’re trendy, they’re local, and there’s a new one every time you turn around. In fact, the local food truck scene has grown by piggybacking on the proliferation of brewpubs, as the mobile eateries allow kitchen-less breweries to keep hungry patrons bellied up to the bar.
While not all of these fit the classic food truck mold – the taco trucks pretty much stay in one place, and Mile Pie Club is bicycle-based – they all provide satisfying to-go eats. The links will take you to each truck’s Facebook page, where you can see their upcoming locations.
It’s easy to forget how lucky we are, and take our local breweries for granted. Good thing the Washington Beer Awards are here to remind us! Here are the Bellingham (and thereabouts) breweries that brought home medals from the 2018 awards.
The Washington Beer Open House is a chance meet local brewers, get a peek at the means of production, and sample some tasty brews.
Yes, it’s cold and crappy out, but if you get your crew together and trade off Uber fares, you can spend your whole day in a succession of toasty pubs. Participating breweries are listed below.
Aslan Brewing: Self guided tours with the owners and head brewer available to answer any questions you might have. Check out the newly upgraded brewhouse, and take home an exclusive Aslan Brew Process sheet.
Chuckanut Brewery: Tours will be held at 12 noon and 1:30 pm. All ages are welcome; kitchen will be serving food starting at 11 am. Meet the brewers and learn more about award winning Chuckanut beers.
Illuminati Brewing Company: Tours of brewery/winery facility at noon, 2pm, and 4pm Release of “Hammer of the Gods” Scotch Ale aged in Highland Scotch Whisky barrels.
Stones Throw Brewery:Tours of the brewery, which has been built in shipping containers, at noon, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm, and 5pm . The owners will tell of the disreputable history of the property, the sustainable building process, and, of course, how they make their beer. Tours will end with tastes straight from the tanks for those who purchased $2 tasters. Family-friendly, dog-friendly.
Wander Brewing:Brewery and Barrel Den tour at 2pm (shown in the pic up top).