Music and Dance

Burn Pile Party

Have a big stack of branches and brush piling up in your back yard? Then why not have a burn pile party?

Burn pile party . . .

Here’s how to host a burn pile party:

  • Make a large pile of fallen tree branches and brush in the back of your yard.
  • Apply for a burn permit through your local fire department. (Note that it might be helpful if your back yard backs up to a large beaver pond, and if you are retired from that local fire department.)
  • Fill your crockpot with pulled pork, make up a few salads and bake a big batch of cookies.
  • Contact your friends and invite them over for a Burn Pile Party.
  • Light your burn pile on fire, and let the fun begin.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

He is retired from the fire department, but this is still some serious back-yard burn pile fire tending!

This is some serious fire tending!

Then later, you can always entertain your friends by playing then some ragtime.

He's playing me some ragtime . . .

Categories: Music and Dance, Outdoors, People, Places, Things | Leave a comment

Downtown Denver

When I lived there, I worked for a gold mining company located right downtown, in the tallest building there. My office was up on the 40th floor of this building, the Republic Plaza.

Republic Plaza . . . where I worked on the 40th floor

I spent a very fun day meandering around downtown Denver, enjoying the old . . . and discovering the new.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Categories: Denver, Hikes and Walks, Music and Dance, Outdoors, Parks, People, Places, Things, photography | Leave a comment


No December seems complete without a trip to Leavenworth, WA for their annual Christmas Lighting Ceremony, especially since it is a great place to go with my son.

Me . . . with Crystal and Brian

This year the Christmas Lighting Festival seemed even more special as friends from my high school days were there performing. With the temperature hovering around 20 degrees F and a frozen fog hovering in the air, it was cold (very cold!) as the members of the Bellingham High School Alumni Band took the stage for their performance. Even bundled up warmly, without these warming fires scattered around the main street of Leavenworth, the audience would have been uncomfortably cold.

At only 20 F degrees and a frozen fog in the air, these outdoor fires were essential for staying warm

While there were heaters on the stage, it still felt cold to the band members as they performed.

BHS Alumni Band . . . on stage in Leavenworth, WA . . .

Information on Leavenworth is available here –, and information about the Bellingham High School Alumni Band can be found here –

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Categories: Events, Music and Dance, Outdoors, People, Places, Things, photography | 1 Comment

Holiday Port Festival

Every year the Port of Bellingham sponsors a holiday festival at the Bellingham Cruise Terminal that includes a gingerbread house competition. Trust me, the term “house” is rather an understatement, and there is plenty of sweetness filling those tables of gingerbread creations.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I enjoyed a walk around the dock near the Bellingham Cruise Terminal while there, then walked over to Marine Park. We have enjoyed week after week of magnificantly colored leaves this fall, but suddenly, all the leaves are gone, leaving the thousands of delicate branches visable on this magnificant tree.

Categories: Events, Music and Dance, Parks, People, Places, Things, photography | Leave a comment

Anacortes Arts Festival

Food, fun, art, entertainment and crowds of people seems a good way to describe it. An annual event, for three days the Anacortes Arts Festival literally consumes downtown Anacortes.

Poster for 2011 Anacortes Arts Festival

Poster for the 2011 Anacortes Arts Festival

Emersing ourselves into the crowd, we walked from one booth to the next looking at the beautiful wares.

Colorful hand blown glass balls

Colorful hand blown glass balls for sale at the 2011 Anacortes Arts Festival

Then, hungry, we looked for something to eat. With just a little help, we found the corn dog booth.

The corn dog booth is that-a-way

The corn dog booth is that-a-way

One of the more notable artists/characters in Anacortes is Bill Mitchell. A paraplegic as a result of a car accident many years ago, he became involved with the Anacortes Mural Project by revitalizing the old buildings in the downtown core with his larger-than-life sized painted scenes and figures. While chatting with Bill, he invited us back to Anacortes for another upcoming event, the Anacortes Work Boat Races. Another day of fun, I am sure, as Anacortes celebrates its maritime heritage with a pirate boat parade kick off for the event. Bill advised us to dress in costumes – gypsies or dancing girls – shouting to us as we left his side something about bustiers and corsets being especially appreciated. Actually, the event does sound quite fun. With boat race competitions in three classes showcasing fireboats, tugs, transporters and working vessels, and their crews, in and around Fidalgo Island and ending with one of my favorite local bands, the Walrus, playing at a dance late into the evening, I just might attend – but would dress more normally.

Bill Mitchell, the Anacortes Mural Project artist

Bill Mitchell, the Anacortes Mural Project artist

At many of the street intersections along the festival there was a stage with performers, and I certainly felt very well entertained. My favorite, however, was Jonny Hahn, a piano player/composer quite well known on the streets in the Seattle area.

Street piano performer Jonny Hahn

Street piano performer Jonny Hahn

Here are more of the photos of the arts, entertainment, people and around the town of Anacortes.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Categories: art shows, craft shows, Events, Music and Dance, Outdoors, People, Places, Things, photography | 2 Comments

Blog at