This month's Downtown Art Walk offers a bit of a treat, including a few Halloween-related exhibits and a chance to see original works that are part of The Art Auction at the Whatcom Museum.
More than 150 pieces from Northwest artists are featured at the museum's premiere fundraising event from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 6, in Old City Hall, 121 Prospect St. Admission is $100, and heavy hors d'oeuvres will be provided by Haggen's Market Street Catering.
The general public can preview the featured art free from noon to 5 p.m. Thursday and Friday, Oct. 4-5, and during the monthly Downtown Art Walk from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5.
In addition, the Old City Hall's permanent exhibits will be open for viewing in the building's third-floor gallery, where there's a collection of Victorian-era toys, early woodworking tools, and the building's fascinating clockworks.
Included in the auction are pieces by such well-known Bellingham artists as Susan Bennerstrom, Thomas Wood, the late John Cole, Caryn Friedlander, Mary Froderberg and Shirley Erickson. The complete auction catalog is available online by following links at whatcommuseum.org.
"We're really excited," said Whatcom Museum board member Christine Scheid-Zurline. "This the first time we've done it strictly as an art auction."
She said she hopes local residents will be inspired by such an abundance of local art.
"That's the most exciting part, that connection," Scheid-Zurline said.
For more information about the auction, contact Kristin Costanza at 360-778-8936.
In addition to the museum exhibit, several other downtown stores and galleries are participating in the Art Walk, said Lindsey Payne, events coordinator at Downtown Bellingham Partnership, which sponsors the free event from 6 to 10 p.m. the first Friday of the month.
Some of the featured events will have a Halloween theme. Not all venues keep the 6 to 10 p.m. schedule, so check individual hours.
- Bellingham poet James Bertolino will present a reading of "The Raven" by Edgar Allen Poe at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5, at Fourth Corner Frames and Gallery, 311 W. Holly St. It's part of a collection of original art celebrating the Noble Raven at the gallery through October.
- A Day of the Dead exhibit is featured at Lucky Monkey art gallery and gift shop, 114 Magnolia St.
- At NW Handspun Yarn, they will have a knitted Dalek - a robot creature from the BBC's "Dr. Who" TV series - fitted over a concrete street bollard. For "Star Wars" fans, they'll have a knitted R2D2 at the store, 1401 Commercial St.
- ModSock, 1323 Cornwall Ave., will showcase the art of Katherine Powell, a Western Washington University graduate with a BFA in printmaking. Her linoleum-block prints often feature self-portraits as seen through the lens of fairy tale and myth, Payne said.
For more information about participating businesses and galleries, go online to downtownbellingham.com/artwalk or call 360-527-8710.
Joe Gaydos, a wildlife veterinarian and chief scientist at SeaDoc Society, discusses the diverse ecosystem of the Salish Sea in a presentation at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10, in the Encore Room at Mount Baker Theatre, 104 N. Commercial St.
The event is co-sponsored by the Whatcom County Marine Resources Committee and by SeaDoc Society, and is part of a monthly public speaker series coordinated by the committee and the Whatcom Watershed Information Network.
General admission is $7 for adults, $5 for students and seniors. Tickets are available at mountbakertheatre.com and at the door. Details: Whatcom County Public Works, 360-676-6876, ext. 50259.
SKAGIT VALLEY FARM TOUR
People can visit ranches and farms that represent Skagit Valley's rich agricultural history during an annual event this weekend. The 14th Annual Skagit Valley Festival of Family Farms runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 6-7, at various locations around Skagit County.
Featured are more than a dozen farm tours that highlight crops, animals or production items; educational exhibits; and gardening demonstrations. Many farms offer free samples and activities for children; and some have food or other items for sale. Among this year's participants:
- Taylor Shellfish on Chuckanut Drive, which features a tide pool touch tank, crabs races and a fairy house activity.
- Samish River Dairy featuring Golden Glen Creamery, which offers tractor rides, a petting zoo and Squirty Gertie, an artificial milking cow.
- Cascadian Farm, which has a roadside stand and berry fields on Highway 20 near Rockport.
For a map and other details, see festivaloffamilyfarms.com.