Education and School Information for Bellingham & Whatcom County

Bellingham Technical College

Bellingham Technical College

Bellingham and Whatcom County are lucky to provide residents with many educational opportunities. Whether you are looking for a private school for a child in the family, a University for a higher education or a technical college to obtain some voacational training, it’s all available. Pick one of the educational categories below to learn more about school in Bellingham and the surrounding communities.

Public Schools
The Bellingham and Whatcom County School Districts are nationally recognized for their high academic achievements. There area a total of seven public school districts in Whatcom County. Check out the public schools page to learn more about the school districts and the opportunities they offer students.

Birchwood Elementary School

Birchwood Elementary School

Private Schools
Whatcom County has a wonderful choice of private schools to offer it’s residents. Check out the private schools link above to obtain a list of private schools in the area.

Higher Education
Bellingham is consistently recognized as one of the top college towns in the nation. Home to Western Washington University, Whatcom Community College and Bellingham Technical School you are sure to find all the programs you will need to complete your degree.

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FOR SALE! North Western Red Cedar Home in Eastern Whatcom County

Have you ever dream of having a story book home in a fair tale setting? This incredible home at 552 Sprague Valley Drive in Maple Falls is that story book house! Constructed of North Western Red Cedar this 3 bedroom, 1 3/4 bath home is everything you could imagine in a Pacific Northwest Home. 

The spacious 1/3 acre lot provides just the perfect setting for this picturesque home.  Inside you’ll find soaring ceilings, an interior brightened by over sized skylights, a wood fireplace with crackling fires for those winter nights – simply a warm & cozy atmosphere. Outside, entertain either on the back deck overlooking the yard, gardens & woods or watch the deer, raccoons, steller jays & eagles go by from the front porch.

Located in Maple Falls, Washington the home is centrally located to provide the best of all worlds. Just a 30 minute drive west you will find the city of Bellingham, Washington. Bellingham offers a wonderful salt water marina on the shores of Bellingham Bay, Western Washington University and ample shopping, recreation and health services. On the other end of the spectrum just a short 3o minute drive East on the Mt. Baker Highway you will be greeted with the snow covered ski slopes of the world renowned Mt. Baker Ski Area.

Below you will find a virtual tour of this lovely home. If you would like to schedule your own showing call (360) 303-2734!


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Support WWU / Support Western's Engineering Proposal

Support Western’s Engineering Proposal

As many of you know, our son Graham recently graduated from WWU.  His degree is in Manufacturing Engineering Technology.  While WWU offers an Engineering Technology degree, they do not have a mandate from the State Legislature to offer a bachelor degree in Engineering.  There is a proposal on the table that would allow them to transition to full Engineering status.  This proposal would have huge benefits to WWU, it’s Graduates ie: your sons & daughters, the community & the State.

Support Western Washington University

Support Western Washington University

I just received this notice from TAG, Technology Alliance Group for Northwest Washington.  TAG informs, represents & connects Whatcom area technology businesses & professionals.

As a parent, business person & residence of Whatcom County, I would ask you to read this information & act on it.

On February 14, TAG posted a letter from Western Washington Universityannouncing their proposal to the legislature to transition Western’s Engineering Technology programs to full Engineering status.

You may be aware that business and industry leaders across the state have advocated for more college graduates with bachelor degrees in Engineering. Washington will demand 282,140 STEM jobs by 2018, requiring a 24 percent increase in training; 7 percent above the national average (and 3rd overall). Western Washington University represents the most cost‐effective way to help meet that need.  Whatcom County already has a need for more engineers, and our need is growing.

Governor Gregoire included $7.6 million in her 2012 State Supplemental Budget to be divided between the University of Washington and Washington State University to address this concern. Western Washington University was not included in the Governor’s budget, but the legislature could choose to include funding for Western in its budget.

Western would add an additional 85 to 100 Engineering graduates to the state total every year if the upgrade is made to move these three programs from Engineering Technology to industry-ready Engineering Degree status.

You can help make a difference.  Send your letter of support today and make your voice heard.  You can use the talking points that Western provided to make letter-writing easy.  Then visit their Action Page where you can enter your address and quickly email your letter to all relevant representatives in just a few clicks.

It’s that easy!

But please, act quickly.  The vote could happen as soon as this weekend.  There’s no time to waste, simply:

1. Visit the talking points page to craft your letter:

2. Visit the Action Page to enter your address and send your letter to your representatives:



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WWU Fall Quarter 2011 Commencement

Congratulations to Bellingham WWU Graduates

Congratulations to WWU Grads of Fall 2011

Congratulations to WWU Grads of Fall 2011

There was standing room only at Carver Gym yesterday afternoon as WWU held its Fall commencement exercises for approximately 600 undergraduates & about 40 masters candidates.  Lylene & I had a vested interest in this Fall’s event as our youngest son, Graham, was one of the 600 sitting out in front of us waiting for the opportunity to move the tassel on his graduation cap from the right side to the left.

 Needless to say there were years of thoughts and memories that were going through everyone’s minds as we all sat and listened to the commencement speakers and the graduates being introduced.  I can only speak for myself remembering the laughter & tears that got us to this point, and all I can say Graham is that we love you & that your Mom & I feel lucky to have been part of the Journey.

Proud parents with their son - a WWU Graduate

Proud parents with their son - a WWU Graduate

So, Fall Graduates, we wish you the best, the World awaits you & needs your enthusiasm, energy, hope and ideas.

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Open House – Indian Street Condo Unit # 202

Open House in Bellingham – Indian Street Condo Unit # 202

1028 Indian St Bellingham WA Unit # 202

1028 Indian St Bellingham WA Unit # 202

Welcome to Unit # 202 1028 Indian Street. The Johnson Team will be welcoming you this Sunday the 7th from 12:00 to 2:00.  This  immaculately maintained 2 bedroom condo is ideally located.  It’s an  easy walk to either the campus of WWU or shopping & entertainment in downtown.  Whether you are looking for a comfortable spot for yourself, housing for your college student or an investment, this 2 bedroom 1 bath unit priced at $129,000, is something that you’ll want to consider.

See you Sunday the 7th from 12:00 to 2:00

See you Sunday the 7th from 12:00 to 2:00

Just in case you are not available to make it to the Open House, The Johnson Team can easily accommodate your schedule. If you’d care to call them at 360-303-2734 or toll free at 888-713-3056 they can arrange for your private showing. If you live out of the area or country and would like additional information about this wonderful property, The Johnson Team would be happy to send you a complete property package. Just give them a call or send them an email and you’ll receive the information immediately

The sun never sets on The Johnson Teams Open Houses.  if you can’t make it physically through the front door, you can always visit us on-line 24/7.

Bellingham Estate Planning Seminars Today May 17th and May 24th

Bellingham Estate PlanningWestern Washington University, Bellingham Technical College, Whatcom Community College and the Northwest Washington Estate Planning Council are hosting free estate planning seminars. The estate planning seminars are free and open to the public.  The seminars are from 4:30 to 6:30pm today May 17th and next Tuesday May 24th at the Squalicum Harbor Boat House.

The seminars will provide attendees with information on how to go about planning your estate, goals for the estate and state and federal tax benefits and information.

Seats for the seminars are still available and even though the seminars are free reservations are required.  Reservations may be made by contacting Valerie Frank at (360) 752-8684 or by email at

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Top Private Bellingham and Whatcom County Employers Based on Number

Bellingham Top EmployersBellingham and Whatcom County as a whole, is blessed with a very diverse economy. The  Bellingham Business Journal recently came out with their list of Whatcom County’s top private employers based upon number of employees. While these large companies are wonderful, Whatcom County’s economic strength is also based on a myriad of smaller businesses, many of whom sell their products far from our borders but have chosen to operate here due to the quality of life and quality of employees who live in Bellingham and around the smaller suburban and rural towns of Whatcom County. Watch later this week for the list of the top public sector employers in the county.

Below you will find a list of the top five private employers in Whatcom County based on number of employees. To view the full list of the top twenty five employers visit The Johnson Team Top Whatcom County Private Employers Page.

Peace Health – St. Joseph Medical Center
2901 Squalicum Parkway, Bellingham
(360) 734-54000
Number of Employees: 2,751
Peace Health operates seven hospitals throughout the Northwest including St. Joseph Hospital in Bellingham as well as several other Peace Health medical primary medical and lab facilities.

BP Cherry Point Refinery
4519 Grandview Road, Blaine
(360) 371-1500
Number of Employees: 800
BP Cherry Point Refinery is location on Cherry Point just South of Blaine. The facility refines the chemical used to produce gasoline, diesel oil, jet fuel and calcined coke. The refinery processes 225,000 barrels of crude oil per day.

Sodexo Inc.
516 High St, Eden’s Hall Suite 108, Bellingham
(360) 650-2970
Number of Employees: 726
Sodexo provides Western Washington University’s Dining Services and serves the Western Washington University campus with three resident dining halls, catering, concessions and ten retail cafés and markets.

Heath Techna
3225 Woburn St, Bellingham
(360) 738-2500
Number of Employees: 610
Heath Tecna is an aircraft interior solutions company and employs staff with diverse disciplines. They employ individuals in the areas of engineering, planning, purchasing, sales and marketing, production and administration.

Fred Meyer Grocery
Lakeway Drive and West Bakerview Rd, Bellingham
(360) 671-1112 and (360) 738-2900
Number of Employees: 578
Fred Meyer is a multi-department store featuring a wide variety of groceries, produces, meats, electronics, jewelery, clothing and household items. Fred Meyer in Bellingham also offers fuel stations and a full service deli.

For the full list of the 25 largest employers in Bellingham and Whatcom Count visit the Johnson Team Top Private Employers Page.  If you are looking to transfer jobs to the Bellingham area  The Johnson Team specializes in helping to make a job relocation easy. To search for real estate in the Bellingham area visit

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Bellingham Home OwnerEvery week we track the number of homes on the market that have offers on them and those that do not and create a ratio we call Pending Ratios.

As of Saturday, Dec. 11th , the pending ratio in Bellingham was 21% . Pending is the time frame between when an offer has been mutual accepted between the buyer’s and the seller’s of the home and when the title actually transfers hands. This give the buyer’s time to get the financing, do inspection, review the title reports and more.

Birch Bay had a pending ratio of 12%

Ferndale has a pending ratio of 18%.

The Lynden area in East Whatcom County has a pending ratio of 17%

The Sudden Valley pending ratio was 12%

To view a complete history of Whatcom County Pending Ratios or for other real estate statistics don’t hesitate to contact The Johnson Team at (360) 303-2734 or by email at

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Bellingham Named Fifth Best Place to Retire!

Bellingham RetirementThis month’s Money Magazine has named Bellingham as the United States fifth best college town for retirees.   For those who may not live here Bellingham is nestled between Seattle, Washington and Vancouver, British Columbia yet still welcomes you with an amazing small town feel despite it’s amenities of a larger town.

Bellingham is home to Western Washington University. WWU is nationaly recognized for excellence and has been voted best regional public University in the Northwest and #2 in the Unites Stated.  With an enrollment of approximately 13,000 students.  It is just large enough to offer various specialty programs and classes yet still retain a small school feeling where it is easy to be welcomed and make friends. WWU also welcome retirees who choose to return to college for personal enrichment classes through their Academy of Lifelong Learning.

Money Magazine noted, “Bellingham offeres easy access to two major metro areas, it’s a district community in its own right, with a nationally recognized hospital, international airports and state college.”  The nationally recognized hospital is Bellingham’s St. Joseph Hospital which is home to a state of the art cardiovacular facility and other medical services. Real Estate

Other lures that attract retirees to Bellingham is the lack of a state income tax, mild seasons, strong community arts, farmers markets, harbors and parks. To search for a retirement home in Bellingham visit our Bellingham Real Estate Property Search. Money magazine notes that the city of Bellingham’s median home price is $258,450. 


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Events this Weekend in Bellingham and Around the County!

BircdWith all of the Olympic events and fun let’s not forget the other events going on on this side of the US/Canadian Border.  Bellingham is offering a wide arry of events this weekend from a wonderful oil painting art display to bird viewing you have lots of options!

Northwest Arts and Crafts
Feb. 05, 2010 – Feb. 26, 2010
In Celebration of Northwest Arts and Crafts is a showing of work created by Blue Horse’s in-house artists, as well as other invited local artists who work in acrylics, ceramics, glass, jewelry, metal, oil paint, and wood. The exhibit will open with an artist reception Fri, Feb 5, 6 – 10pm.
Baystreet Village
301 W. Holly St., Bellingham
Event Times: 11-5:30PM
Event Cost: FREE
Phone: 360-671-2305

Lucia Douglas Gallery
February 06, 2010 – February 27, 2010
A new exhibit with oils by NW landscape painter David Ridgway and new wood carvings by La Conner sculptor Peregrine O’Gormeley. Artist reception Saturday February 6 from 6 – 8 pm.
1415 13th Street, Bellingham
Event Times: Wed – Sat 11 – 5 PM
Event Cost: FREE
Phone: 360.733.5361

WWU SOS&A for Grades 3-5
February 19, 2010 – February 20, 2010
This event is for youth in grades 3-5 and takes place February 19-20. The sleepover follows an evening immersion of a special topic. Add the Saturday morning recreation option to complete the experience. Visit the Web for details or contact or (360) 650-3308.
Western Washington University, SMATE building
Phone: 360-650-3308

Winter Wings: Birds of the Skagit Flats
February 20, 2010
Join Institute naturalist Jim Alt for a field excursion designed to celebrate one of the Northwest’s natural treasures. Traveling together, we’ll survey the area’s profound bird life, with a focus on raptors, wintering waterfowl and shorebirds, as well as the relationships that bring these various species together in this particular place.
Lower Skagit Valley
Event Times: 6 clock hours
Event Cost: $95
Phone: 360-856-5700 ext.209

The Musical of Musicals
February 10, 2010 – February 28, 2010
What would it look like if all of your favorite musicals were all rolled together into one 90 minute performance? It’d probably look something like The Musical of Musicals (The Musical!). This smash will keep you laughing from start to finish with sharp wit and puckish energy.
Mount Baker Theatre
104 N Commercial, Ballingham
Event Times: 7:30PM & 3PM
Event Cost: 20 Full/10 Student
Phone: 360-734-6080

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