:: Join Us!

Events‎ > ‎

Workshops & Events

RE Sources offers a seasonal series of skill-building workshops, classes, films, seminars, presentations and facilitated discussions to help you build a more sustainable lifestyle. Scroll down to see what's upcoming at RE Sources Sustainable Living Center (above The RE Store).  2309 Meridian Street, Bellingham, WA.

Proceeds from all workshops benefit RE Sources' environmental conservation and advocacy. Thank you for supporting our community. 

Last Chance for Intertidal Trainings & Summer Surveys 

April 19th, 27th, and May 3rd, Whatcom and Skagit Counties
Classroom and field trainings 
Times and locations vary, see below

This trainings will increase your understanding of our nearshore marine ecosystem and equip you to collect meaningful survey data of plants and animals in the intertidal area. Trainings and surveys build on the 2013 successful season of nearshore monitoring conducted by volunteers and friends of the Cherry Point and Fidalgo Bay Aquatic Reserve Citizen Stewardship Committees and the Whatcom County Marine Resources Committee, with support from RE Sources North Sound Baykeeper. 

The last training will occur in Skagit County on Sunday 4/27 at Samish Resort from 1230-5. Surveys will occur both in Whatcom and Skagit Counties.  Training is required prior to participation in the surveys. 

Trainers will include professionals in the field, Doug Stark, Michael Kyte, and Wendy Steffensen. Surveys will take place on low-tide days during the summer.   

In Class training: 
Fidalgo Bay Resort
4701 Fidalgo Bay Rd, Anacortes 
Sunday April 27th, 12:30 - 5:00 pm
Samish Resort, Anacortes (map)

Field Training
Saturday, April 19th, 1:00 -5:00 pm.
Marine Park, Bellingham (map)
Saturday, May 3rd, 12:30 - 5:00 pm 
Washington Park, Anacortes (map)

For more information, contact Wendy Steffensen or (360) 733 8307.

 Identifying Sea Star Wasting Disease

Tuesday, April 22nd
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
RE Sources Sustainable Living Center
2309 Meridian St, Bellingham (map)
Tuesday April 22nd, 6:00 -8: 00 pm

Join RE Sources for a special training as we host Melissa Miner of MARINe, the Multi-Agency Rocky Intertidal Network. She will explain what sea star wasting disease is, how you can detect sea star wasting disease, and how you can help monitor for sea star wasting disease here at home.

For more information, contact Wendy Steffensen or (360) 733 8307.

Take a Walk at Cornwall Landfill - soon to be a Park!

Wednesday, April 23rd
5:30 pm - 6:30 pm
Meet at the corner of Pine Street & Cornwall Avenue 

Why not take a late afternoon tour of Cornwall Beach Park? This is a unique opportunity to experience the site, first-hand, to take in scenic views of Bellingham Bay and downtown Bellingham, and to visualize proposed plans for park development. Because it is currently a controlled clean-up site, access is normally closed. The gates will open and City and Port of Bellingham staff will escort the public into the planned park area, answer questions and record comments made during the event. 

To attend this walking tour, meet at the corner of Pine Street and Cornwall Avenue (PDF) at 5:30 pm on April 23, 2014. The event will end at 6:30 P.M. Be sure to wear appropriate shoes (closed toe) for a walking tour on uneven and unpaved areas. No pets please. Parking is available on Cornwall Avenue. 

For more information, contact the Parks and Recreation Department at (360) 778-7000, or parks@cob.org.

Little Squalicum Park Restoration & Earth Day Work Party

Saturday, April 26th
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Little Squalicum Park Wetlands
Meet at the lower parking lot, Bellingham Technical College (map)

Celebrate Earth Day with us, prepare to have fun, and meet new friends.  This effort is a collaboration between RE Sources and City of Bellingham Parks and Recreation Department.  Please join us for our ongoing efforts to maintain the new ecosystem at Little Squalicum Park and wetlands.  This area has been transformed from a toxic cleanup site into a public park.  We'll work to mulch, weed, and remove invasive plants, improving the habitat at this beautiful new park.  Park at the lower parking lot at Bellingham Technical College.  We provide tools, gloves, and snacks!.

For information, email Lee First, or call (360) 733 8307.

Bay Cleanups: Making Sense of the State Cleanup Process

Tuesday, April 29th
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
RE Sources Sustainable Living Center
2309 Meridian St, Bellingham  (map)

Gain the tools you need to make effective comments, have meaningful involvement in the cleanup process, and to ensure that cleanups are as protective as they can be under the law.  Join Lucy McInerney, Environmental Engineer for Washington Department of Ecology, to learn the law that governs cleanup.

In this presentation, McInnerney will explain the law that governs cleanup in clear and understandable terms.  She will explain the process – from initial site listing to final cleanup – and will help decipher what Ecology can and cannot do under the law.

This presentation will prepare you for upcoming comment periods on decision-making cleanup documents. In 2014 alone, the public will have the opportunity to review the Remedial Investigation/Feasibilty Study for the Central Waterfront, RG Haley, GP West, and Harris Avenue Shipyard and the Cleanup Action Plan for Cornwall Avenue Landfill.

Lucy McInerney has spent the past 25 years working to improve the environmental health of Bellingham Bay.  Early in her career she led efforts to identify and control sources of pollution to the bay, and helped move contaminated sites along the Bellingham waterfront into the state cleanup process.  Lucy has completed cleanup work at two sites, and currently manages cleanup work at the I & J Waterway and Whatcom Waterway sites.  She supports other Ecology project managers at seven additional waterfront cleanup sites.  Lucy co-leads the multi-agency team coordinating cleanup and habitat restoration work in Bellingham Bay and oversees several habitat restoration projects. She cares about the community, bay, and work to restore the area to health. And in her spare time she enjoys helping her 11-year-old son with math and watching him play baseball.

For more information, email Wendy Steffensen or call (360) 733.8307.

Build Your Own Vendor Cart: Demonstration Workshop

Two Part Workshop

Part I: Wednesday, April 30th, 6:00 - 7:00 pm
Part II: Saturday, May 3rd, 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
$30 (includes a one-time 15% shopping discount for needed materials)
Pre-registration Required by Saturday, April 19th.

Interested in selling produce, honey, flowers or handmade items?  This is the workshop for you! Transition Whatcom is partnering with THE RE Store’s REvision Division to help you gain the skills necessary to craft your own vendor cart!

You will learn:
  • The basic structure for building the frame and platform for making your own unique cart.
  • You will leave this workshop with a ‘roadmap’ of techniques and materials to build your own cart.

Features discussed:
  • Frame o Secure cash boxes
  • Platform o Areas for signage
  • Closeable awning for shade o Wheels and portability

Pre-registration Required by Saturday, April 19th. Email Polly Carpenter, or call (360) 733. 8307 to register.

The workshop will be led by Eberhard Eichner, The RE STore's REvision Division artisan.

Stormwater Tour:  Doing Business and Protecting Water Quality - Stormwater Treatment at the Port of Anacortes Pier 2

Wednesday, April 30th
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Robinson's Cove (Former Wyman's Marina Site) 
202 U Avenue, Anacortes (map)

The public is invited to attend a public tour of stormwater treatment facilities at the Port of Anacortes’ Pier 2, as well as the nearby newly restored habitat at Robinson’s Cove, the former Wyman’s Marina Site.  Pier 2 is an active deep water marine terminal where a wide variety of cargo, including logs, prilled sulfur, and petroleum coke has been handled and shipped for the last 80 years.  The main items currently shipped from Pier 2 are petroleum coke from nearby refineries and prilled sulfur also from a nearby facility.  Pier 2 is operated by the Port of Anacortes with on-pier loading operations coordinated through Metro Ports Stevedoring. The tour is presented by staff from the Port of Anacortes and RE Sources for Sustainable Communities.

Without proper pollution prevention procedures, transferring petroleum coke from trucks via a conveyor belt to vessels has the potential to generate pollution into the Guemes Channel.  To prevent pollution, the Port of Anacortes takes extensive pollution prevention steps.  We’ll get to see these steps, including a covered conveyor belt with a misting system, a high pressure truck tire washing system to prevent trucks from tracking out coke dust, and a 3-containment stormwater management system.  

A system of catch basins and trench drains collects stormwater within the site’s 15-acre drainage boundary, and directs it to the multi-cell stormwater treatment pond located at the western end of the site.  All processed water (water collected from pressure washing, misting, and the tire-wash facility) is also routed and collected in the treatment pond.  Once water is in the pond, the particulates settle, and are removed.  Then, the stormwater water is recycled back to the two 15,000-gallon wash water storage tanks for re-use, or discharged for final treatment to the City’s Waste Water Treatment Plant.

The Port operates Pier 2 facility in compliance with its State Waste Discharge Permit, which is required by the Clean Water Act and the State of Washington Water Pollution Control Law. The Waste Discharge Permit requires regular sampling for water quality parameters.  

Other sources of stormwater pollution that are generated at this site include petroleum products from incidental leaks from tractor haul trucks, routine truck operation such as wear of tires, wheels, and brakes, and building and storage materials, cargo container or equipment, and deposition of atmospheric particulates onto the site.

For more information, email Lee First or call 360 733 8307.

A Tour of Rain Gardens, Low Impact Development, and Stormwater Management in Anacortes

Saturday, May  3rd
10:00 am - noon
Meet at 1211 24th Street, Anacortes (map)

RE Sources for Sustainable Communities, the City of Anacortes, and WSU Skagit County Extension are collaborating to offer a tour showcasing rain gardens, low impact development projects, and stormwater facilities in downtown Anacortes.  This tour will showcase a variety of stormwater management methods, and highlight methods that help reduce the impacts and pollution that are contributed by stormwater runoff. 

Stormwater is rain and snow melt that runs off surfaces such as rooftops, paved streets, highways, and parking lots. As water runs off these surfaces, it can pick up pollution including oil, fertilizers, pesticides, soil, trash, and animal waste. From here, most stormwater flows directly into a local stream, bay, or lake without any treatment.

The tour begins in the south parking lot at Island Hospital, in Anacortes.  Please meet at 1211 24th Street.  Participants will gather here, and view the rain gardens and permeable pavement installations on the hospital grounds.  From here, we’ll drive or carpool to the Depot Arts Center (611 R Avenue), where we’ll walk to a variety of sites to discuss stormwater management and treatment options. 

Rain gardens are engineered gardens filled with plants that allow stormwater to be captured and absorbed.  Rain gardens function like native forests to filter polluted runoff, and help reduce flooding. When planted with the right types of plants, rain gardens also attract birds, butterflies and bees.  We’ll view several rain garden installations along the tour route.

Permeable paving is an alternative to traditional asphalt.  It uses materials that allow stormwater to percolate, rather than runoff the surface.  Encouraging percolation reduces runoff, and allows pollutants and suspended solids to be filtered by the soil, instead of being routed with stormwater to the nearest water body without any treatment.  Permeable paving can be used for sidewalks, bike lanes, and roads that are subject to light vehicle traffic.  We’ll view several permeable pavement installations along our tour route.

We’ll also view a stormwater treatment vault system, and an underground stormwater storage vault.  These systems remove some of the pollutants from stormwater and assist in managing the flow of stormwater from a developed site.

This tour will be co-lead by Lee First, Pollution Prevention Specialist at RE Sources for Sustainable Communities, Jane Billinghurst, WSU Master Gardener, and Michelle Grace, Anacortes Public Works Department.

For more information, email Lee First or call 360 733 8307.

The Decline of Bellingham Bay

Wednesday, May 7th
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Bellingham Public Library, Downstairs
2010 Central Ave, Bellingham (map)

Valerie Partridge, Department of Ecology, member of the Marine Sediment Monitoring Team, and lead author on the recently released report, “Sediment Quality in Bellingham Bay, 2010”, will give a presentation on the health of Bellingham Bay sediments. Reporting on findings from the 2010 sediment surveys in thirty locations across Bellingham Bay, Ms. Partridge will review the data and possible causes for the decline of marine life health. As the report indicates, Bellingham Bay's sediment quality is lower than trends found in sediment quality in Puget Sound and the Strait of Georgia. Ecology believes Possible reasons for the decline might be attributed to: 

  • Changes in food resources that sink through the water and reach the sediments.
  • Changes in dissolved oxygen, pH, and levels of ammonia and sulfides in the water above and within the sediments.
  • Natural population cycles of sediment-dwelling organisms that may be influenced by oceanic cycles.
  • Sediment movement and burial.
  • Unmeasured contaminants, including contaminants of emerging concern, contaminant mixtures, and contaminants that may sicken but not kill marine life.

Valerie Partridge, Department of Ecology, member of the Marine Sediment Monitoring Team, and lead author on the recently released report, “Sediment Quality in Bellingham Bay, 2010”, will present on the health of Bellingham Bay sediments. Reporting on findings from the 2010 sediment surveys in thirty locations across Bellingham Bay, Partridge will review the data and possible causes for the decline of marine life health. As the report indicates, Bellingham Bay's sediment quality is lower than trends found in Puget Sound and the Strait of Georgia. 

The study is part of the Puget Sound Ecosystem Monitoring Program, a collaboration of state, federal, tribal and local government agencies, non-governmental organizations, watershed groups, business, academic researchers, local integrating organizations, and other private and volunteer groups and organizations – all dedicated to monitoring environmental conditions in Puget Sound.  Click here to read the full report.

For more information, email Wendy Steffensen or call (360) 733.8307.

Beach Cleanup at Locust Beach

Sunday, May 18th
10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Bellingham Community Kiteboarding Center (map)

Join Surfrider, Ikkatsu, and the Marine Resources Committee as we kick off the beach cleanup season at Locust Beach! We’ll provide beach cleanup materials, so all you need to do is show up between 10 and 1 and help us out as we track beach litter. We will be meeting at the Bellingham Community Kiteboarding Center located in the parking lot on the right off Locust Ave. If you arrive after 10:30, come find us on the beach!  Read more

Bringing it Home: documentary screening 

Tuesday, May 27th
5:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Pickford Film Center, 
1318 Bay St, Bellingham (map)
Purchase Tickets Online

Join RE Sources, Transition Whatcom, the Community Food Co-op, Sustainable Connections, and Terra Organica for a documentary screening about industrial hemp - the benefits and the barriers. Stick around for a panel discussion after the screening on universal uses for industrial hemp, and what can be done locally to take action. Body care and fashion from Naked Clothing, and hemp beer from Aslan Brewinc Company.

Industrial hemp is a non-psychoactive plant, grown in 30 other countries, but prohibited in the United States. Legalization advocates say it could help American farmers, create jobs and replace thousands of harmful petrochemical and synthetic products. BRINGING IT HOME explores the question "Why aren't we growing it here?" while discussing hemp's past, present and future with business owners using it for construction, textiles, nutrition, soaps and bio-plastics in America and abroad. 

A father’s search to find the healthiest building materials leads him to the completion of the nation’s first hempcrete house in Asheville, North Carolina. Hemp with lime is a non-toxic, energy efficient, mildew, fire and pest-resistant building material. The drawback — industrial hemp is currently illegal to farm in the U.S.A. where it once was an important crop. The documentary followed the “hemp trail” to the U.K. to interview hemp business owners, researchers, farmers, a CEO with a hemp block distribution center and Kevin McCloud, author and TV host of Grand Designs who chose hempcrete for his housing project. The film includes other international hemp industry leaders, small business entrepreneurs and American CEO’s David and Mike Bronner of Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps and John Roulac of Nutiva. Industrial hemp farming advocates and the opposition weigh in on current legislation and the efforts to change policy at state and federal levels. Read more

Purchase Tickets Online

Apr 9, 2011

The RE Patch

RE Sources’ and The RE Store’s on-site community garden, used for growing organic fruits and veggies, as well as community demonstrations and educational opportunities. More. Apply for a garden bed.

SLC Workshop Space
The Sustainable Living Center features informative and stimulating presentations and films. RE Sources partners with other community organizations and non-profits, to provide opportunities to present innovative topics to the general public for discussion, exploration, and education.

Teach a Workshop

RE Sources loves to collaborate with businesses, organizations and individuals to bring a well-rounded sustainability curriculum to our community. You can donate your time as a new instructor or charge a registration fee for seasoned skill building courses.
Email HannahC@re-sources.org for more info, or fill out an application form

Host Your Own Event

Please click here for more information on how to rent a room at the Sustainable Living Center. You can also email our office manager, Rebecca, at rebeccaw@re-sources.org for rental information.

Sponsor an Event

If your business would like to gain exposure through sponsoring events at the SLC, please contact Hannah Coughlin at HannahC@re-sources.org or call (360) 733-8307.

Click here to see some of the events we've held at the SLC in the past.

Location & Directions

RE Sources SLC

2309 Meridian Street
Bellingham, WA 98225

The Sustainable Living Center is located just above The RE Store, on the NW corner of Broadway and Meridian in the Fountain District.  You'll find a bike rack in the alley off of Broadway and the stairs behind the RE Store.

Hannah Coughlin,
Jan 31, 2014, 1:08 PM
Lee First,
Feb 24, 2014, 9:56 AM
Lee First,
Mar 3, 2014, 9:29 AM
Matt Petryni,
Aug 23, 2012, 2:57 PM
Hannah Coughlin,
Feb 24, 2014, 2:24 PM
Lee First,
Apr 3, 2014, 2:31 PM