We are here for you!
Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism has reformatted our Tourism Talk e-news to provide ongoing information. We have also added 
tourism industry  resources  to Bellingham.org for access at anytime. 
We are here to help all our members navigate these uncertain times. 
Local Scenes of Inspiration
What Will You Do "When This is Over"? 

Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism and Veritas Media collected video responses from people all around Whatcom County, and asked what people are looking forward to doing again when we move past social distancing and the stay at home order. Thank you to everyone who participated! 

What Will You Do
What Will You Do "When This is Over"?

Josh Burdick interviewed Teri Treat, the co-owner of the Inn at Lynden about the effects Covid-19 has had on the hospitality industry and community of Lynden in general. The historical Waples Building where the Inn at Lynden is located also houses other businesses including Bellingham Baby Company, Village Books & Paper Dreams in Lynden, Avenue Bread Lynden, Overflow Taps and Cheeks all of which have been effected by the pandemic, including Rustlers Front Street Grill which is just down the street. She spoke about how she appreciates the little things so much more now, even that her husband and son can do cross fit from CrossFit Lynden at home has helped them during this time.

Catching up on the Lynden Community
Catching up on the Lynden Community
Whatcom County Updates
Yes, Whatcom County is Still in Phase 1 of Reopening

Right now, staying home except for essential trips is limiting the spread of COVID-19. The  Stay Home, Stay Healthy  directive is still in place and Whatcom County is still in  Phase 1  of the "Safe Start" plan for reopening. Moving to Phase 2 doesn't happen automatically when the current executive order expires on May 31. Moving to Phase 2 happens when we meet certain public health criteria.

Being in Phase 1 means:
  • Stay home as much as possible.
  • Practice social distancing and wear a cloth face covering whenever you will be within six feet of someone who does not live with you.
  • Don't gather or spend time with people outside your household.
  • Essential businesses are open, but most  businesses are still closed.
How Does Whatcom County Get to Phase 2? 
You've probably heard that some counties in Washington can apply for a variance to move into Phase 2. To do that, we must first have an average of fewer than 10 new cases per 100,000 residents over a 14-day period. For Whatcom County that means we'd have to have fewer than 22.5 cases in the past two weeks. During the two weeks from May 11-25, we've had 37 new cases, an average of 16.4 new cases per 100,000 residents in the past 14 days. Another way to look at that is that we would need no more than 1.6 new cases on average each day for 14 days, and our daily average has been 2.6.
Threshold to Move to Phase 2 
Fewer than:
Current Whatcom County Number
(May 11- 25) 
Population: 225,300 residents
10 new cases per 100,000 residents in past 14 days
16.4 new cases per 100,000 residents in past 14 days
22.5 new cases in past 14 days
37 new cases in past 14 days
1.6 new cases on average each day
2.6 new cases on average each day

What You Can Do to Keep Us Moving Toward Phase 2
The Whatcom County Health Department has traced many of our recent confirmed cases to formal settings such as work, and informal settings such as Mother's Day parties, where people were less than six feet apart, for more than 15 minutes. This includes interactions like sharing food, food preparation spaces, and bathrooms. Remember that gathering together is risky because you can spread the virus before you even feel sick. Some people have to gather in essential workplaces, and that's why it's important that  employers are taking steps to protect their employees too.

The quickest way to move to Phase 2 is to limit the spread of the virus. That means staying home as much as possible and only going out for essential trips.  Practice good habits like social distancing and  wearing a face covering in public whenever you can't maintain six feet from others who don't live with you, including when you recreate in local parks. 

The fewer interactions we have with people outside of our household, the fewer chances there will be to spread the virus. If we want to bring Whatcom County safely into Phase 2, we must all work together, six feet apart.

We are also working to ensure Whatcom County meets other important milestones to move to Phase 2. These are things like:
  • Having contact tracers trained and ready.
  • Being able to keep up with testing demands.
  • Having plans to help people safely isolate or quarantine, if they need it.
You can find out more about the plan to reopen Washington, and the activities of each phase in the full  Safe Start Plan.

On Tuesday, June 2nd, Dave Conley from Washington State Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) will be joining us to share information and clarification about how L&I can support businesses that are reopening during this time. To have your COVID-19 small business recovery questions answered by an L&I representative, we encourage you to submit any questions ahead of time by filling out the following form: Click here to fill out the form. Please fill out by 2 pm on Monday, June 1st, to guarantee that your questions get answered.
When: Tuesday, June 2nd at 10 am.
Send Us Your Business Updates

Many of our local businesses including restaurants and retail can open in a limited capacity when Whatcom County reaches Phase 2, and Governor Inslee has issued re-opening guidance for many sectors. But consumers are still nervous. 

Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism wants to help you tell your story, and regain consumer trust. Please tell us what special messages we can share about how you are changing your business operations to prepare to re-open and to instill customer confidence. Will you open with special hours? Are you making physical changes to your space? Are you implementing new policies? 

Please send an update to our Marketing team at media@bellingham.org and let's discuss how we can help you get the word out. 
Americans Still Nervous About Travel

Longwoods International Research and Miles Partnership are conducting weekly surveys of U.S. traveler sentiment throughout the current pandemic. The most recent results reveal the following: 

  • 45% of Americans do not support opening up their community to visitors right now
  • 40% of Americans do not feel safe traveling outside their community 
  • 49% of Americans do not feel safe dining in local restaurants and shopping retail stores in their community. 
Local Whatcom County Updates

Mark your calendars! April Brews Day @Home will take place online on  June 12, 2020 from 3 p.m. - 7 p.m.  Participants will have the opportunity to purchase a variety of take-home packages with interesting and tasty groupings of beer, merchandise and more. Packages can be retrieved via curbside pickup at  Max Higbee Center  or local delivery. Be prepared to pop open your brews with your "quaranteam" at home and share your fun on social media for a virtual "cheers" to the community and April Brews Day.

May 31, 2020, the Bellingham Symphony Orchestra is proud to be at the forefront of virtual concerts by presenting their second virtual concert with renowned violinist Chee-Yun performing Brahms' Violin Sonata No. 3 "Adagio," Bach's Chaconne, and Méditation from the opera Thaïs by Jules Massenet.

May 28 - July 5

Time:  All Day
May 28 - May 31

Time:  10:00 am - 6:30 pm
May 30 (Saturdays)

Time:  7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
May 25

Time:  Posted 4:30 PM Mondays, watch anytime from home
May 31

Time:  All Day
May 31

Time:  All Day
June 1

Time:  All Day
June 1, 8, 15, 22 & 29

Time:  8:00 am - Noon

May & June 2020
Our region is full of beauty! Send us your scenic photos from all around the county and enter them in our latest contest for a chance at a prize! Yes, members can enter. Members can also donate prizes. Enter here.

Questions? We are happy to answer them for you.
Give us a call at 360-671-3990,  email us or visit our website at  bellingham.org .
Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism
904 Potter Street, Bellingham, WA 98229