Category Archives: Off-Topic

Bellingham May Acquire Chuckanut Ridge Property

SAL_Chuckanut06 copyUnless you’ve been hiding under a rock somewhere, you’ve probably noticed a sign here or there regarding Horizon Bank’s development of Chuckanut Ridge. There has clearly been a lot of debate here in Bellingham and Whatcom County over the proposed condominium development because of environmental preservation concerns, but since Horizon Bank was shut down by federal regulators last week and taken over by Washington Federal, it’s possible that the City of Bellingham may acquire the forested parcel of land.

Cathy Cooper, a Washington Federal senior vice president, says that the bank has no interest in developing the site: “We are not real estate developers and we really don’t want to be involved in a highly controversial project if we can avoid it,” she said, according to The News Tribune.

Mayor of Bellingham Dan Pike is in discussions with Washington Federal’s president to see if the City and Washington Federal can work something out.  Stay tuned for more information…

2010 Census: Keep your personal information safe!

3453643879_6cff4c72232010 will bring more than a new decade: it will also bring census takers to the doors of our Pacific Northwest homes.

While it’s important to be cooperative with census takers who come to your home, it is also wise to be cautious and make sure 1) you’re dealing with a person truly working for the 2010 Census; and 2) you’re only providing the information necessary.

Here’s some helpful information from the Better Business Bureau:

U.S. Census workers will have a badge, a handheld device, a Census Bureau canvas bag (seen at right), and a confidentiality notice.  Ask to take a look at their I.D. and their badge before answering their questions.  Census worker or not, never invite someone you don’t know into your home.

Census workers are only verifying address information at this time.  Never give someone claiming to work for the census your Social Security Number, your credit card information, or any banking information.  Though census workers may ask for basic financial information such as salary range, anyone requesting more detailed information is not working for the census.  The only information you really need to provide for the U.S. Census is how many people live at your address.

While Census workers may eventually contact you via mail, telephone, or in person at your home, they will not contact you via email, so don’t give out your email address or open any emails claiming to be from the Census Bureau.

Unfortunately, we live in a world where scams and identity theft are a real challenge, and it can impact everything from buying a home to securing your retirement.  But with a bit of common-sense caution, you can protect yourself and your family!

(photo credit: seandreilenger)

Whatcom Middle School Students Find Warm Welcome at Bellingham Host Schools

pic-8644Students and teachers from Whatcom Middle School are likely to remember this first day of school more than any other: on November 12th, they began classes in their new school home – at least for the time being.

One week after 106-year-old Whatcom Middle School was severely damaged in an early-morning fire, 580 students joined together in an assembly at Bellingham High School. There, they celebrated what makes them Whatcom Wildcats – not a school building, but their connections to each other. After the assembly, they loaded on buses to take them to their temporary host schools – likely to be “home” to them for the remainder of the school year.

Sixth graders now attend Geneva Elementary, in the Whatcom Falls neighborhood. Seventh graders are in class at Fairhaven Middle School. At both schools, students out front held large signs and cheered the new students on as the bus arrived.

Eighth graders now attend Bellingham High School – they have their own wing, dubbed “The Wildcat Wing” – while students in special education go to Squalicum High School in the Mount Baker neighborhood.

Teachers hope that the warm welcome their students received will make it easier for them to settle into a new routine in a new school. They are proud of the students who’ve helped to welcome new kids to their school, and are proud to be a part of this great Bellingham community.

To find out more about schools in Whatcom County, browse our Bellingham neighborhoods page, where you’re find photos of local schools as well as helpful details about each area.