Big Change for Whatcom Symphony Orchestra, Free Cupcakes, and a Musical in Lynden

Gail Ridenour, executive director of Whatcom Symphony Orchestra, let me know that beginning with the 2019-2020 season, Whatcom Symphony Orchestra will change its name to Bellingham Symphony Orchestra.
This decision, she says, was the culmination of a thorough and careful inquiry, during which a cross-section of stakeholders and local community leaders (disclaimer: I was asked for my input) were consulted to determine the best course of action. Symphony musicians also contributed to the decision with a majority vote in favor of the new name.
“I feel so honored and privileged to have watched this orchestra grow over the last five years, and the sky is really the limit,” said music director Yaniv Attar in a press release.

“This is such an exciting moment in the life of our fabulous orchestra, and this change will ensure that music will continue to thrive here as we serve the community of Whatcom County and beyond.”
Details about the name change will be announced in spring 2019. For more about the r
ebranding process and anticipated timeline, go to

Sean Walbeck, vice-president of production for Bellingham Theatre Guild, will host a “Cupcakes ‘n Process” informal informational meeting, open to the public, at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 2, at the guild playhouse lobby, 1609 H St. Learn about how the all-volunteer organization works — and yes, there will be cupcakes. Find out what the guild members are doing, suggest what they should be doing and maybe what they should stop doing, says Walbeck. Interested? Call him at 360-647-9242 or email him at

Lynden Performing Arts Guild presents a toe-tapping singalong, “Hello, My Baby”, directed by Kristi Thies, opening at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 3, and running at 7:30 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays and 2 p.m.Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. through May 20, with an additional performance at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 19, at the Claire vg Thomas Theatre in Dutch Village Mall, 650 Front St., in Lynden.
“Hello, My Baby” weaves the music of Irving Berlin, George and Ira Gershwin, Gilbert and Sullivan, and others through the story of Tin Pan Alley songwriters, sweatshop workers, gangsters, and dreamers on the sidewalks of New York City in the early 1900s. Tickets are on sale online at and at the theater box office from 1 to  3 p.m. Tuesday through Friday or call 360-354-4425 during those hours.

The  YWCA of Bellingham presents “The Changing Landscape of Love” with author and TV commentator Stephanie Coontz at the YWCA Leadership Power Breakfast from 7 to 9 a.m. Friday, May 4, in the Four Points by Sheraton ballroom, 714 Lakeway Drive. A minimum $50 donation is requested. The event funds YWCA housing and services for homeless women. Reservations are required. Call 360-734-4820 or email:

Whatcom Literacy Council hosts its annual Trivia Bee & Silent Auction from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 4, at Bellingham Technical College’s Settlemyer Hall, 3028 Lindbergh Ave. Co-hosts  Scotty VanDryver of KAFE Radio and “Jeopardy!” star Ken Jennings match wits with other members of the community. Thirty-two teams, sponsored by local businesses, will compete against each other in four qualifying rounds leading up to the final round with eight teams. The winner will go home with the traveling “Totten Trophy,” named for past coordinator and longtime volunteer for the council.  There is also an award for the best “cheer” section of the audience.  Kids are welcome; tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for children younger than 12. Details:, 360-752-8678.

Make.Shift Gallery, 306 Flora St., celebrates Kids’ Art Walk from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday, May 4, by partnering with Cedar Tree Montessori, asking 4th to 6th grade students to create artistic renderings of their imaginary friends through drawing and painting. The opening night will also feature creative activities for children hosted by Play Lab, a local after-school enrichment program. To learn more about Play Lab For more information about the Art Walk or Make.Shift visit or contact Jessyca Murphy at