How We Eat Can Change the World

How We Eat Can Change the World

Local Food, Local Money, and the Power of Storytelling This story was first published by SoulCraft All Stars. “How we eat can change the world,” said visionary Alice Waters. At first, that statement may seem idealistic or exaggerated, but as we’ve seen through Alice’s...
Farm-to-Table Events with Crave Catering

Farm-to-Table Events with Crave Catering

Crave Catering is a Bellingham-based catering business with a focus on local, chef-inspired food for all manner of events: intimate and large-scale weddings; reception celebrations; benchmark occasions; corporate events; non-profit functions; general family dining;...
How “The Freedge” Supports a More Food-Secure Whatcom County

How “The Freedge” Supports a More Food-Secure Whatcom County

Tucked behind The RE Store in Bellingham WA is a Freedge. What exactly is a Freedge, you might ask? It’s a community refrigerator packed with free, nutritious food – and it’s open to all. This particular Freedge is the result of a partnership between The RE Store and...
Food and Fish Coming to the Portal Container Village

Food and Fish Coming to the Portal Container Village

The Portal is Whatcom County’s container village hub, located at the heart of the Downtown Bellingham’s Waterfront. It currently features six local businesses creatively operating out of shipping containers including Kulshan Brewery and a rotating retail shop for...
Missing Middle Housing – Missing No More!

Missing Middle Housing – Missing No More!

The 2023 Washington State Legislative Session recently passed missing middle housing legislation, which legalized the building of a variety of homes in all zones across Washington State. What does this mean for Whatcom County? And do we even need it?   As Bellingham...
The Stories at the Heart of our Local Food System

The Stories at the Heart of our Local Food System

Tele Aadsen is a female commercial fisherman and writer, connecting people to salmon through the stories she shares and the fish she catches. She knows first-hand how the power of storytelling shapes our relationships to the food we eat and the folks who grow, raise,...
From Farm to Loaf: Water Tank Bakery Shares the Love of Local Grain

From Farm to Loaf: Water Tank Bakery Shares the Love of Local Grain

Nestled near the Skagit Valley Airport and Cairnspring Mills in the heart of the Skagit Valley, you’ll find a hidden gem of a bakery. Water Tank Bakery creates wholesome bread, cookies, and other treats, prioritizing local ingredients and the process of long...
Top 10 Local Drinks for a Dry (and Delicious) January

Top 10 Local Drinks for a Dry (and Delicious) January

As one year closes and another begins, we take this time to reflect and integrate all we’ve learned over the last twelve months. Or at least… we try! There can be quite a pressure to make and keep New Years’ resolutions, which is why we want to think about how...
How a Pig Farm and Chocolate Company Work Together to Reduce Waste

How a Pig Farm and Chocolate Company Work Together to Reduce Waste

Photo courtesy Katie Pencke and Matthew McDermott, courtesy of Alluvial Farms On a cold morning in late October, the pigs at Alluvial Farms in Everson are sleeping, roaming the pasture, and eating – a fairly typical day in the lives of these animals. Farmers Katie...
Fall and Winter CSAs: Harvest Bounty Year-Round

Fall and Winter CSAs: Harvest Bounty Year-Round

Boldly Grown Farm There’s a chill in the air and the rains are here – autumn has finally come to Northwest Washington. And while we’re relishing in the chance to break out our favorite teas and coziest sweaters, we can’t help but reminisce about glorious summer days...
Farming and Fermenting with a Light Touch at Barmann Cellars

Farming and Fermenting with a Light Touch at Barmann Cellars

Stephanie Barmann and Jesse Nickerson are the farmers and fermenters behind Barmann Cellars in Everson WA, a low-intervention winery and cidery utilizing regeneratively-farmed estate fruit. Everything they craft, tend, and share is done with deep care and intention,...
Follow Sasquatch on the Think Local First Coffee Crawl

Follow Sasquatch on the Think Local First Coffee Crawl

Calling all coffee adventurers and Sasquatch enthusiasts! There have been reports of Sasquatch sightings at numerous coffee shops around town. Experts agree that Sasquatch is a coffee fanatic. So, grab your mugs and join us as we embark on a Sasquatch-inspired Coffee...
Lummi Seafood Market: Growing Livelihoods on the Salish Sea

Lummi Seafood Market: Growing Livelihoods on the Salish Sea

Terry Phair sits looking out over the Salish Sea, the ocean that’s the foundation of his life and business. The water is calm, but beneath the surface live fish, shellfish, and seafood that provide Terry, and more than a hundred other tribal fishers, with food and...
Bellingham Farmers Market: 30+ Years of Local Market Magic

Bellingham Farmers Market: 30+ Years of Local Market Magic

The Bellingham Farmers Market is a beloved local destination where community comes together to uplift and support local farmers, makers, and food businesses. Having just celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2022, the market is now looking forward and dreaming about how...
Mariposa Farm & The Gifts of Community

Mariposa Farm & The Gifts of Community

Located in Everson WA, Mariposa Farm grows organic produce and berries under the care and expertise of Joaquin and Lis Lopez. They share their harvests at farmers markets, stores, food banks, and through their CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). Above all, the food...
18 of the Best Sandwiches in NW Washington

18 of the Best Sandwiches in NW Washington

It’s spring! And while Sasquatch loves foraging for nettles and chickweed as much as the next Bigfoot, there’s only one food they truly crave during this season – sandwiches! Luckily for Sasquatch, and for you, spring is also when the Sandwich Showdown commences. What...
Long Hearing Farm: Farming for the Future, Listening to the Past

Long Hearing Farm: Farming for the Future, Listening to the Past

Located on 40 acres of Sauk-Suiattle, Upper Skagit, and Stillaguamish lands, Long Hearing Farm grows food to nourish their community and neighbors, listening to the past as well as to the future. As farmer-owner Elizabeth Bragg puts it, “Our mission at Long Hearing...
Whatcom Food System Plan Envisions an Equitable and Resilient Future

Whatcom Food System Plan Envisions an Equitable and Resilient Future

Whatcom County is home to rich and abundant ecosystems, a passionate food and farming community, and engaged citizens. Why, then, do so many people in the local food system still struggle to grow, raise, access, and afford healthy and nutritious food? Why, and how,...
Top Food & Farming Business Conference Returns In-Person

Top Food & Farming Business Conference Returns In-Person

BELLINGHAM, WA, January 19, 2023 – Sustainable Connections invites all food businesses, artisans, and growers to the NW Washington Farm-to-Table Trade Meeting on February 7th, 2023.   The Farm-to-Table Trade Meeting brings together farmers, fishers, food artisans,...
Your Local Guide to Winter Wellness

Your Local Guide to Winter Wellness

Winter is here, and with it come shorter days, colder nights, and the desire to hibernate until spring returns. While it’s tempting to wish the dark season away, it can be a potent time to tend to our wellness – as individuals and as a community. “Self-care” is...
Eat Local Year-Round With Ferments

Eat Local Year-Round With Ferments

As we settle into the heart of winter, it’s easy to look out over the fields of Whatcom County and wonder how it’s possible to eat anything seasonally this time of year. Even though the time of unlimited tomatoes has passed, there are still plenty of creative ways to...
Holly’s Meat Pies: Comfort Food for Community

Holly’s Meat Pies: Comfort Food for Community

If you look up “pasty” in the dictionary, you’ll find an entry that reads something like this:  Pasty (pass-tee) n. | Savory hand pie originating in Cornwall England. A hearty meal miners took down to the tin mines. Holly Bevan-Bumford, owner of Holly’s Meat Pies,...
10 Ways to Show Your Local Love this Holiday Season

10 Ways to Show Your Local Love this Holiday Season

BELLINGHAM, WA, November 17, 2022 – Join Sustainable Connections and Sasquatch as they share 10 ways to show your local love this holiday season.   1) Attend a local event! This community is bursting with holiday markets and celebrations. Peruse local vendors’...
Good Things Come In Small Acres

Good Things Come In Small Acres

Tucked into the Mount Baker foothills, Small Acres Farm grows vibrant and nourishing food using renewable energy and sustainability practices – and their impact on this community is anything but small.  Chris Henderson and Mia Devine, co-owners and farmers, have grown...
South Whidbey Community Center: Energy Efficiency By and For Community

South Whidbey Community Center: Energy Efficiency By and For Community

The South Whidbey Community Center is an inclusive space for the South Whidbey community to gather, learn, and create. It’s a place where people come together to make positive change, and that can be clearly seen in their recent heat pump project.  “The campus itself...
The Vault: The Wine Bar Taking Local Food to New Heights

The Vault: The Wine Bar Taking Local Food to New Heights

Blaine, Washington is a beautiful town nestled against the Canadian border and the Salish Sea. While it’s known for its proximity to our friendly neighbors to the north and its marina, it’s quickly making a name for itself on the casual fine dining scene, in large...
Local farms and restaurants to celebrate this Eat Local Month

Local farms and restaurants to celebrate this Eat Local Month

August 31  2022, Bellingham WA – Sustainable Connections is excited to celebrate September Eat Local Month, a month-long celebration of eating local food and those who grow, raise, harvest, and prepare it to share with this community. All month long, Sustainable...
Lydia’s Flock: Shepherding for Sustainability and Community

Lydia’s Flock: Shepherding for Sustainability and Community

What began as two sheep in Lydia and Jared Strand’s backyard in Seattle has become Lydia’s Flock, a local farm with a flock of 120+ sheep and a deep desire to build a more sustainable and transparent food system.  Lydia and Jared’s journey as shepherds began in 2008....
Drink Local First at a Farm Stand Near You

Drink Local First at a Farm Stand Near You

Summer’s bounty is in full swing, and nowhere is that more evident than at your local farm stand. Farm stands are a unique and special part of the farm-to-table journey – it’s about as close as you can get to straight-out-of-the-ground fruit and veggies!  Farm stands...
Meet Calypso Kitchen

Meet Calypso Kitchen

Sarah Chan, owner and chef at Calypso Kitchen, knows how food can tell a story. And the food that comes out of her kitchen tells one rich with flavor, commitment to local farms, and deep compassion. Originally from Trinidad and Tobago, Sarah is passionate about...
9 Ways to Drink Local First This Summer

9 Ways to Drink Local First This Summer

Summer is the season when the good folks of Bellingham and Whatcom County head to the mountains, seas, and breweries to soak up some well-earned sun and good times. After a long winter and spring (we see you, La Nina), it’s time to enjoy, explore, and Drink Local...
Daydream Farm: Growing Food in Friendship and Community

Daydream Farm: Growing Food in Friendship and Community

Nestled next to the Nooksack River in Everson, Daydream Farm is just that – a dream come true for owners, farmers, and friends Emma Arnold and Maddy Chitwood. Daydream Farm is a low/no-till farm growing diversified vegetables for their 50-person CSA and the...
How Humble Bouquet Grows Beauty & Sustainability

How Humble Bouquet Grows Beauty & Sustainability

Flowers speak a universal language of love, beauty, and care. And Humble Bouquet’s garden-to-vase floral business communicates even more: a deep appreciation for community and respect for the Earth.  Owner and florist Laura Wheeler is passionate about sharing her love...
Dandelion Organic Delivery Brings Produce to the People

Dandelion Organic Delivery Brings Produce to the People

A delicious plate of food isn’t just a meal, it’s a story. That’s because food doesn’t just magically appear in the store or in your home. There are countless people who work from dawn to dusk – a true labor of love – to build a...
7 Ways to Share the Local Love this Mother’s Day

7 Ways to Share the Local Love this Mother’s Day

There are infinite ways to celebrate Mother’s Day – as many ways as there are kinds of mothers, in fact. This Mother’s Day, Sasquatch wants to highlight all the opportunities to honor mothers, maternal figures, and Mother Earth too, of course!  Sasquatch’s mom...
Madrona Gifts: Making Reciprocity Special and Sustainable

Madrona Gifts: Making Reciprocity Special and Sustainable

The practice of giving gifts is one that celebrates true reciprocity – both the giver and giftee receive something special. Perhaps no one exemplifies this better than local business Madrona Gifts, who has turned occasions like birthdays and holidays into...
A1DesignBuild Centers Community and Craft

A1DesignBuild Centers Community and Craft

A house is a physical building to live in, of course, but it’s also so much more. It’s a place to raise families, to age, to welcome friends and neighbors, and express your personality. A1DesignBuild creates homes with all these things in mind.   A1DesignBuild is a...
Sharing the Bounty: How CSA Drop Sites are Building Community

Sharing the Bounty: How CSA Drop Sites are Building Community

A lot of things in life are best shared over a beer, so why not a CSA share? Signing up for a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share is a great way to support your local farmer and ensure that you’ll have a box of delicious, locally grown products week after...
Ten Fold Farm: Sharing Food & Courage With Community

Ten Fold Farm: Sharing Food & Courage With Community

Tiffany Bell, in her own words, “does a little bit of everything.” She’s a farmer, mother, wife, soup-maker, and an advocate to get your mammogram. She and her husband own and run Ten Fold Farm, an 8.9-acre farm right on the outskirts of Bellingham, Washington. Ten...
Say I Love You With Waffles

Say I Love You With Waffles

While the temperatures may be chilly, Sasquatch’s heart is anything but! In fact, after a winter of handing out Think Local First gift cards (and then a long, cozy hibernation), Sasquatch is more full of love for their community than ever before. Luckily for them,...
Majestic Adventures and Other Kid-Friendly Gift Ideas!

Majestic Adventures and Other Kid-Friendly Gift Ideas!

Sometimes, the best gifts are ones that you can’t wrap, you can only experience! And what better way to share joy and wonder than helping kids’ dreams come to life with Majestic Adventures?! Majestic Adventures is a local organization with youth programs...
Whatcom County’s Art World is Thriving

Whatcom County’s Art World is Thriving

Whatcom County is home to some of the most vibrant artists and art institutions in the world – and yes, we’re including Paris and New York in that list! The area’s natural beauty, creative lifestyle opportunities, and strong community has given rise...
Local + Natural Self-Care

Local + Natural Self-Care

When we say local and natural beauty, you might imagine the majestic mountains of Whatcom County, or perhaps Bellingham Bay on a particularly sunny winter’s day. And you’d be right, but that’s not what we’re talking about. We’re talking...
Flood Relief Resources

Flood Relief Resources

Recent floods in Whatcom County have devastated area farms, homes, and communities. The recovery process is difficult, but as a community we are here to support and uplift one other. Listed below are opportunities to donate, as well as help available for farms and...
Cultivating Community with Marisa Papetti, Honeybee Wrangler

Cultivating Community with Marisa Papetti, Honeybee Wrangler

“She’s as busy as a bee!” It’s a common expression, one that describes a person who loves doing a thousand things at once. And yes, bees are known for their work ethic and the delectable result of their labor – there’s nothing more delicious than a dollop of...
Storia Cucina: Where Food is a Story and a Restaurant is a Community

Storia Cucina: Where Food is a Story and a Restaurant is a Community

Food tells a story, and at Storia Cucina, it’s a tale you’ll want to savor with a house-made cocktail and a mouthwatering plate of cacio e pepe. Owner and chef Jonathan Cicotti chose the name Storia Cucina, which translates from Italian to kitchen story, to reflect...
Eat Local Month Highlights Supply Chain Solutions

Eat Local Month Highlights Supply Chain Solutions

September Eat Local Month was a delicious and inspiring celebration of local food. All month long, Sustainable Connections highlighted the farms, fishers, grocers, markets, chefs, and restaurants of Whatcom, Skagit, Island, and San Juan counties. Participants...
At The Heart of Community, There’s a Farmers Market

At The Heart of Community, There’s a Farmers Market

Food is connection. Whether that’s families gathering around a kitchen table, farmers harvesting from their fields, or friends getting together at their favorite restaurant, nothing brings people together quite like a meal. And every meal that we’ve ever...
14 Local Drinks You Need To Try

14 Local Drinks You Need To Try

Drink Local First with Sasquatch’s Sips What’s Sasquatch sippin’ on these days? Well, if our mysterious and furry friend is anything like us, they’ve got no shortage of options!   Summer is in full, glorious swing in Bellingham and Whatcom County. We’ve...
Farmer’s Bounty Bloody Mary

Farmer’s Bounty Bloody Mary

Farmer’s Bounty Bloody Mary If you stop by a Whatcom County farmers market in July, prepare yourself for absolute delight and wonder. That’s because the land’s agricultural abundance is on full display – tomatoes nestle in among spicy peppers,...
Rose-All-Day Sangria

Rose-All-Day Sangria

Rose-All-Day Sangria The days are long and the weather is what we’ve been waiting for all year long. It seems like there’s something to celebrate around every corner, whether that’s a major life event or simply breathing in fresh, clean air in the...
Strawberry-Basil Sparkler

Strawberry-Basil Sparkler

Strawberry-Basil Sparkler This sparkler is the *royal wedding* of sweet and savory. It’s fresh, vibrant, and of course, everything is made infinitely more delicious with Whatcom-grown strawberries in the peak of summer. If you’re in a creative or...
Low-Waste Libations

Low-Waste Libations

Low-Waste Libations Doing good tastes good. At least, it can when you’re drinking some low-waste libations that use ingredients that might otherwise head to the compost or even the *gasp* trash. 30-40% of food in America is wasted. Not only does this...
Gin and Tonic Cucumber Cooler

Gin and Tonic Cucumber Cooler

After a long day spent playing or working in the sunshine, there’s nothing like a refreshing beverage in your hand. Bonus points for filling up your glass with local produce and products that not only support your body but also support the vibrant agricultural...
Twin Sisters Markets

Twin Sisters Markets

Twin Sisters Markets: For Community, By Community by Annika Sampson You might know the Twin Sisters as the distinctive double peaks that tower on the Whatcom County horizon. They’re also the namesake of Twin Sisters Markets, a collaborative effort to bring healthy,...