It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

Humanities Washington Speakers Bureau host author Clyde Ford, leads a discussion on race in modern-day United States, with audience participation, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3, at Whatcom Museum’s Old City Hall, 121 Prospect St. $5 suggested donation, free for museum members.

The Lucky Monkey, 312 Champion St., is accepting entries for its annual wreath exhibit through Wednesday, Dec. 4. Get busy and create a wreath! You’re so artistic you’d probably win “Best in Show!”  The exhibit opens from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6, during the Downtown Art Walk. “The Wreath as an Art Form” can be as traditional or non-traditional as you want! It’s “Wreather Madness!” The wreaths stay up through Dec. 24. Your participation counts as everyone gets to vote for their top four favorites! Awards for the winners! If you can’t make it Friday, voting continues through the weekend!

The revised 2012 version of “Working, a musical” is staged Dec. 5-8 at Western Washington University’s Performing Arts Center Mainstage Theater. Adapted by Steven Schwartz and Nina Faso, with additional contributions by Gordon Greenberg, Jim Lortz directs the play based on Studs Terkel’s best-selling book of interviews with American workers. “Working” paints a vivid portrait of the men and women that the world so often takes for granted: the schoolteacher, the phone operator, the waitress, the millworker, the mason and the housewife, just to name a few. Set in contemporary America, this new version of “Working” is a musical exploration of 26 people from all walks of life. The strength of the show is in truths that transcend specific professions — how our relationship to work reveals key aspects of our humanity.
This raw new adaptation of “Working” allows us a rare glimpse of the actors and technicians working to put on a show which further enhances the relatable nature of our lives as workers.
Nominated for six Tony Awards, this classic has been updated for a modern age, featuring new songs by Tony Award-winning Lin-Manuel Miranda, as well as favorites by Stephen Schwartz, Craig Carnelia and James Taylor.  Order tickets online or call 360-650-6146.

The Jansen Art Center, 321 Front St, in Lynden, opens an exhibit featuring three very different artists with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 5. “Kaleidoscopic: New Work by Christen Mattix” features landscapes that probe the boundaries between realism and abstraction, the self and the environment. Each artwork reveals inner and outer landscapes simultaneously as if presenting reality strained through poetry. Trish Harding’s exhibit “Separated from Normal” is inspired by her time living on Lummi Island. Kris Ekstrand’s “Nests and Landscapes” includes paintings, drawings and monotypes explore my emotional response to the landscape where she’ have lived within for most of her adult life: the brooding estuarine tidelands and farmland of the Skagit and Samish lowlands. The works show through Feb. 28. Details: 360-354-3600, jansenartcenter.org.

Ron Miller talks about his book “Conversations with Legendary Television Stars: Interviews from the First 50 Years” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 5, at Village Books, 1200 11th St. Written with James Bawden, the book showcases 39 interviews, selected from conversations conducted from 1971 to 1998, that present a fascinating glimpse of important figures from TV’s past. Featured are exclusive interviews with major stars (including Donna Reed, James Garner, and Ricardo Montalban), comedians (including Lucille Ball, George Burns, and Milton Berle), TV hosts (including Dick Clark and Ed Sullivan), and notable musical entertainers (such as Glen Campbell, Mary Martin, and Lawrence Welk). Each chapter explores the subject’s TV work— with detailed behind-the-scenes disclosures—and includes additional information about the subject’s performances in film and on stage.

Join the Community Boating Center for a festive celebration with music by Mark Kelly and Mark Ashworth, drinks, a raffle, and hors d’oeuvres from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 5, at the Squalicum Boathouse, 2600 N. Harbor Loop Drive to honor another successful summer season of equitable and affordable access for all Whatcom County residents to Bellingham Bay. Gather with friends to share stories of our beloved Bay, and to share the excitement of looking toward 2020 programs that will help even more people get to experience the magic of connecting with nature from the intimacy of a kayak or sailboat.
Forge connections with other passionate boaters, make plans to get out on the water together come Opening Day 2020, and make a donation to share this joyful opportunity with your community! Tickets are $50, available in advance through Brown Paper Tickets.

Join Amy Chaloupka, curator of art, for an inside look at “Wanted: Ed Bereal for Disturbing the Peace,” the artist’s first solo museum retrospective, from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6, at the Lightcatcher, 250 Flora St.  Chaloupka will share insight into Bereal’s broad scope of work, techniques, and themes. It’s free with paid admission. The exhibit will be open during the Downtown Art Walk from 6 to 10 p.m. that night (free admission).

Western Washington University’s annual Children’s and Young Adult Book Sale is from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 5-6, at Western Washington University’s College Hall 135 and 137. All new books, $2 paperbacks, $5 hardcover. Proceeds from the book sale go toward student scholarships for the 2020 WWU Children’s Literature Conference to be held Feb. 29.

Glenn Hergenhahn-Zhao reprises iDiOM Theater’s now-traditional but completely unique rendition of “A Christmas Carol,” which attempts to make peace with Christmas, Charles Dickens, the British Empire, ham, and the world at large, using Dickens’ original text, four actors, and an unexpected setting, Dec. 5-21 at the Sylvia Center for the Arts, 207 Prospect St., featuring Hergenhahn-Zhao, Anna Mostovetsky, and Bennett Williamson, with Sandy Brewer. For tickets go to sylviacenter.org.

“Laurie Potter: Timeline” opening during the Downtown Art Walk from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6, at Fourth Corner Frames, 311 W. Holly St., features a body of work that reflects her attention to color, form, and detail. In creating vibrant representational paintings that portray her love of the natural world, and after spending several years exploring different materials and methods, she has become adept at painting a variety of subject matter in pastel, acrylic, watercolor and mixed media, while consistently focusing on rich color and striking compositions. The gallery will be hung ‘salon style’ (a term that refers to large groupings of art that extend higher and lower than the traditional eye-level single row or “museum-style” hanging) with from her years of creating as much art as she could. More on her art at www.lauriepotter.com. 

Richard Nevels has always lived near a body of water and has always been a beachcomber, he says, and his dream was to figure out how to make a living off the beach. He moved to San Juan Island  in 1980 and immediately began scouring the beaches for wild looking wood, and there was plenty. But what to do with it? The answer, he says, came in the person of Mike Moss, a woodcraft artist, fellow beachcomber, and creator of driftwood bandsaw boxes which he marketed at the Pike Place Market. He saw Nevels’ driftwood stash and taught him the basics of bandsaw box making. Nevels launched False Bay Boxes in 1982 and sold every piece that was put into the marketplace. He moved to Whatcom County in 1987 and kept making boxes until about eight years ago when he retired from the art and craft scene. But he’s hosting an open house of his works — large, live-edge, sculptural boxes carved in outrageous wood for the high-end woodcraft and art market– from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, at 2911 Patton St., in the Birchwood neighborhood, around the corner from Bellingham Technical College. More moderate sized/priced pieces will only be available during the holidays. Refreshments will be served all day long. Details: 360-920-3944.

Steven Greenebaum talks about his book “One Family Indivisible: A Spiritual Memoir” at 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, at Village Books, 1200 11th St. He looks at all of the divisions that seem to separate us — race, gender, ethnicity, and our spiritual differences, particularly addressing how we might come together to celebrate and respect our spiritual diversity rather than fear it. One of our greatest challenges as a species has been, and continues to be, how to hold with respect our almost endless diversity while at the same time recognizing our common humanity.

Join Western Washington University faculty artists Eric Kean, Jen Weeks, Judy Widrig, Pat Nelson, and Erika Block for a free musical potpourri of viola, piano, and wind music at 7:30  p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, in the Performing Arts Center Concert Hall.

 

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