Sustainable Connections CREATING THRIVING COMMUNITIES THROUGH INNOVATIVE IDEAS, COLLABORATION, AND ACTION. Sat, 15 Dec 2018 08:00:56 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Sustainable Connections 32 32 Gathered Confections Sun, 09 Dec 2018 07:25:50 +0000 Gathered Confections

(503) 468-6063

Hours of Operation: Call for Hours

Gathered Confections is a custom cake boutique and pop-up bakery specializing in wedding cakes and events. Our cakes and pastries are crafted in small-batches and utilize locally-sourced ingredients, organic floral and herbal accents, and handcrafted garnishes.

Sustainable Practices: Eat Local First

Sales Methods: Wholesale;Services;Goods;Vending

Neighborhood: Downtown: State/Chestnut

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Bellingham Physical Therapy Sat, 08 Dec 2018 02:14:17 +0000 Bellingham Physical Therapy306 36th St Bellingham WA, 98225

(360) 647-0444

Hours of Operation: M-F 7:30am-5:30pm

We are a private practice out patient orthopedic clinic, providing exceptional, creative physical therapy in the treatment of the whole person – offering innovative solutions, combining the art and science of physical therapy to alleviate the limitations of the musculoskeletal system.

Sustainable Practices:

Sales Methods: Services

Neighborhood: Bellingham: Whatcom Falls

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Whatcom Transportation Authority (WTA) Thu, 06 Dec 2018 05:40:03 +0000 Whatcom Transportation Authority (WTA)4011 Bakerview Spur Bellingham WA, 98226

(360) 676-RIDE (7433)

Hours of Operation: Check online for routes and times.

*This business is a Sustaining Member of Sustainable Connections! Sustaining Business Members go above-and-beyond to support the work of Sustainable Connections and to make our place an amazing one to live, work and play in. They are model businesses, inspiring change-makers invested in our local economy and we hope you will help us celebrate them by supporting and shopping with them.

Whatcom Transportation Authority (WTA) provides public transportation throughout Bellingham and Whatcom County. Our GO Lines offer service every 15 minutes along Bellingham’s most highly traveled corridors. In 2014, Whatcom County residents made nearly 5 million trips aboard WTA. We look forward to seeing you on board!

Sustainable Practices: Community Energy Challenge;Farm Fresh Workplace;PSE Green Power Purchaser;Whatcom Smart Trips

Sales Methods:

Neighborhood: Bellingham: Irongate

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Development and Communications Director Wed, 05 Dec 2018 18:49:37 +0000 Company: Viva Farms

Closing Date: Open Until Filled

West Coast Homes Sat, 01 Dec 2018 20:32:07 +0000 West Coast Homes131 East Grover Street Lynden WA, 98264

(360) 927-1293

Hours of Operation: Mon-Fri 8am-5pm

*This business is a Sustaining Member of Sustainable Connections! Sustaining Business Members go above-and-beyond to support the work of Sustainable Connections and to make our place an amazing one to live, work and play in. They are model businesses, inspiring change-makers invested in our local economy and we hope you will help us celebrate them by supporting and shopping with them.

West Coast Homes is a division of Faber Construction, which was founded in 1987, by Rick Faber and received its start in the building industry by constructing agriculture buildings and home remodels. Since then Faber has grown into constructing custom homes “across all budget ranges” and continues serving our clients with their home building and remodel needs. Faber Construction’s dedication to quality and maintaining a close relationship with our clients and their budgets has kept them as a leader in the residential market.

Sustainable Practices: Toward Zero Waste

Sales Methods: Services;Goods

Neighborhood: Lynden

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Going Big Thu, 29 Nov 2018 08:18:10 +0000 Squatch to the Food Rescue

By Mark Peterson

“Wow.” Yes, that is what I said to myself as I have started to reflect a bit more intently on the occurrences of 2018. The turn of the seasons and the holidays ahead provide me an annual opportunity to take stock of the past 12 months and be thankful and enjoy the gift of another day here on this blue planet.

2018 has been one rip-rocking year for me here at Sustainable Connections, for the organization in general, and I’m sure glad that I have been surfing this wave of goodness with such wonderful co-workers. It has been a good year to be at Sustainable Connections and so many things were accomplished across all our program areas. It is a motivating work environment to see the difference being made in our community, from energy efficiency to neighborhood international markets, and local food systems to hunger relief, the results are impressive.

Squatch get Food DonationPersonally, it has been a particularly rewarding year in regards to our Toward Zero Waste program, but that is not to say there weren’t a few bumps along the way. 2018 began with the major challenge of the incredible disruption of the world recycling markets as a result of the new import bans instituted by China. The full effects of this worldwide shift are yet to be seen, and some of those negative effects are finally starting to impact Whatcom County.

It was these worldwide forces impacting us here locally that shifted my Toward Zero Waste thinking yet again. Waste happens locally, both on an individual and community scale. We just don’t really think of it that way

, but there is no denying that waste starts at home and work since waste is a byproduct of what we consume. Like many other communities in the world, we no longer have a local landfill; the ultimate resting place for the waste we create is elsewhere–somebody else’s backyard. Recycling is no longer the free or the easy option, and it’s human nature to seek the path of least resistance, which means more tons of our waste is ending up in landfills.

By now you may be wondering ‘where’s the rewarding part of this story?’. The unlikely answer lies in the 40% of the food we produce that goes uneaten and is destined for landfills. Why is this rewarding? Because there are options for us to handle this waste locally in ways that also benefit our community. We hold the keys to successful reduction because how we handle food and organic waste in Whatcom County is not dictated by tariffs in China, the market price for plastic, or (for the most part) even federal policy.

The holy grail of the Toward Zero Waste movement is waste reduction, and this is where the rewarding part comes in to play. Food Recovery is just that–waste reduction–because food that is produced and eaten is not wasted. It has been inspiring to see the support for our fledgling Food Recovery Initiative and the commitment of everyone involved, including the Whatcom County Health Department, volunteers, chefs, business owners, and the agencies distributing the food. The initiative has excelled so much thanks to the collaborative effort.

For me, there are many sides to food recovery, and while we have achieved some amazing results this year, we’ve also just scratched the surface. On a purely waste reduction level, preventing organic matter, including food, from ending up in landfills is a success. On a human level, I now have a better understanding of food insecurity in our community and the positive role our Food Recovery Initiative has played so far. Over 25,000 lbs. of food recovered and diverted from landfill resulting in over 15,000 meals served is real impact and something we can be proud of. But at the end of this year, I see that this is merely the beginning, and even more work and bigger success is yet to come. Yes–we’re going big in 2019!

Click here to learn how you can get involved in the Food Recovery Initiative.

Spiral Studios Fri, 23 Nov 2018 15:11:52 +0000 Spiral Studios310 Flora Street Bellingham WA, 98225

(360) 202-0635

Hours of Operation: By appointment

Spiral Studios is a full service Interior Architecture and Design firm based in Bellingham, Washington. Spiral Studios works with you to create the vision for your home, office, or small commercial project, and carries the vision through to completion. This includes fully developed construction documents, project permitting, color analysis, lighting, material selections and specifications, building design, and overseeing construction and installation.

Sustainable Practices: Bank Local First

Sales Methods: Services;Goods;Vending

Neighborhood: Bellingham: City Center

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Alluvial Farms Fri, 23 Nov 2018 10:14:01 +0000 Alluvial Farms6825 Goodwin Rd Everson WA, 98247

(206) 992-7034

Hours of Operation:

Alluvial Farms produces high quality pastured pork for Pacific Northwest communities. WSDA custom processing for individuals, and USDA processing for individuals and wholesale available. Ecological stewardship and fostering resilient food sheds is at the root of Alluvial production.

Sustainable Practices: Accepts EBT/Food Stamps;Eat Local First;Toward Zero Waste;Whatcom Farmers for Clean Water

Sales Methods: Online Store;Wholesale;Services;Vending


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Whatcom Land Title Company Thu, 22 Nov 2018 20:26:00 +0000 Whatcom Land Title Company2011 Young St. Bellingham WA, 98225

(360) 676-8484

Hours of Operation: Mon-Fri 8am-5pm. Additional signing hours and traveling signings by appointment.

Whatcom Land Title is the ONLY Locally Owned and Operated Title Company in Whatcom County. This year, celebrate 2011 at 2011 Young Street, where we provide complete Title and Escrow services. We can also offer traveling signings throughout the county, in your Office or Home. Your office becomes our office.

Sustainable Practices: Toward Zero Waste

Sales Methods:

Neighborhood: Bellingham: City Center

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Seifert & Jones Wine Merchants Wed, 21 Nov 2018 21:26:53 +0000 ted-Di-in-bottles--header

Over 50 years of food and wine experience


By Liz Hansen
December 2018

If you’re anything like me, buying a bottle of wine for a special occasion consists of deliberating over the prettiest bottle on the sale rack. As you can imagine, I often get stuck with my sub-par and uncomplimentary bottle of wine at the end of the night, whose destiny is likely something along the lines of a fruit fly trap or craft experiment. My biggest problem is that I don’t really know anything about wine, aside from it coming in two different colors- which is inaccurate, by the way. Not to mention, no one finds that to be an impressive skill, let alone a conversation starter. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a place that could tell you everything you needed to know about wine, in the kindest and friendly way? And would even happily help you pick the perfect bottle for that very specific occasion? Luckily, Seifert & Jones Wine Merchants is exactly that kind of place. I got a chance to pick their minds about wine, and how they’ve managed to find their niche in a town full of breweries. 

Ted and Diane (aka, Di) are the namesake and owners of Siefert & Jones Wine Merchants. Their love of the wine brought them together, and their passion for sustainable living and love of community brought them to Bellingham.  


all-3-out-front   store-front


Their mission is to support smaller producers and farmers who also support the land. Their ethic centers around supporting the community they’ve become a fond part of. Di and Ted are always in the shop and ready to share their combined 50+ years of experience to help you find that perfect bottle of delectable, artisan wine. They carry wines of all kinds, and with approximately 1,800 wines to choose from, you can see how their expertise comes in handy for creating a harmonious feast. They’ve sampled 90% of the wines they carry, give or take, and I think it’s safe to say, with Ted and Di around, you can forget all about labels.  


label-less-bottle   Seifert and Jones tastings


According to Ted and Di, buying a wine according to its label is both mysterious and misleading, considering the label is all about marketing. “It is not the best way to choose a beverage that you’re going to spend $10, $15 or $20 on,” says Ted. In fact, it’s not rare for a fabulous wine to have a plain and less dynamic label altogether. Siefert & Jones are there to get you past the marketing and share exactly what’s in the bottle…and if it’s suited to your pallet! They can even tell you things that you’d never even find on a label, like the family, vintage, growing zone, and so forth. But what truly makes these merchants all-stars on my list, is the methods they use in choosing which wines to carry. They put a strong emphasis on local, with roughly 50% of the wines in the shop sourced from Washington and Oregon alone.




When it comes to growing quality wine grapes, Washington and Oregon can hold their own. In Washington, our soils and climate better compliment darker, more robust wine grapes that are in used in reds, like Cabernet. In Oregon, they’re better suited to grow lighter grapes for white wines. If you’re a wine connoisseur, then you know that grapes grown from different regions all have different qualities. And any pallet, experienced or not, would be remiss not to experience them!

Their primary qualification in choosing a quality wine producer can be boiled down to agricultural practice and ethics. “We’re looking for producers that are farming right,” says Ted. Organic and biodynamic are a couple of their choice methods. In Europe, the certifications are different, and there are many farmers that have been using these types of practices for generations, and those are the kinds of wines that are worth importing.  


front-window   product


Next, the couple seeks out producers that use natural fermentation practices. “We’re looking for wines that have no additives and are not manipulated,” they explained. Manipulation comes into play with larger wineries that are shipping globally and trying to manipulate or control the wine to better adapt to the various conditions involved in shipping and extending the shelf life. Some examples are filtration, and the types of yeasts and sulfurs that are added. Ted and Di only choose wines with naturally occurring yeasts, or yeasts that have developed with the grapes in the vineyard. The same goes for sulfites. Because sulfur is a naturally occurring component in the soil, having it in your wine isn’t a bad thing, until you add it unnecessarily. And just like the yeast, it’s not considered ‘natural’ when the wrong type and excess amount gets into the bottle. So, you can be sure that every bottle at Seifert & Jones has undergone serious scrutiny to earn a place on their shelves.  




As I’m sure many of us can attest, the holidays are the peak season for wine. For a proper pairing consultation, it’s best to know the menu you’ll be pairing with and how flexible your budget is. From Hannuka and Christmas dinners to holiday party hors d’oeuvres wine can be tricky to pair properly. For meals, Di and Ted recommend starting the evening with some bubbly, then maybe a rose for the next course. Shoot for lighter wines that are lower in alcohol content and “not so power driven”. They pair better with the whole table, and you won’t get sloshed before dessert. Save the heavier wines for more robust flavors. If you’re just looking for something to sip on while having great conversation, they can help you with that too. 

They have lots of perks for their customers, so be sure to visit their website for more information on things like their CSA style wine club, specially designed to help keep your pallet diverse and happy. You probably also don’t want to miss out on their weekly wine tastings. They’ll be featuring champagne and port in December, and I’ll definitely be there to get some schooling on pairing and labels so I don’t get stuck with my bargain shelf dud this year!


Seifert & Jones
19 Prospect St., Bellingham
(360) 393-3271