Bellingham’s Fairhaven Toy Garden

This weekend I had the chance to stop by the Fairhaven Toy Garden in Bellingham, Washington.

This 1,900-square foot shop encourages families to play with puppets, pick costumes and test out a toy car’s wheels. Anyone over age 10 can try their hand at needle-felting pocket-sized rabbits and sheep at the store’s Saturday workshops.

Shelves of yarn and art supplies keep creative kids happy. A window-side table encourages families to sit and color with wax crayons and Lyra pencils.

The Toy Garden’s Waldorf-inspired owners supply wooden building toys, colorful roving, moldable beeswax and other natural playthings.

It’s a sweet little shop, and it’s within sightline of the Fairhaven Village Inn, which you might win a free night’s stay at with my Midweek Getaway Giveaway.

Even if you don’t win, you might drive to Fairhaven for a felting workshop. As one of the store’s owners told me: “Mostly adults show up!” But it would be a fun late-morning jaunt with your tween.

After the toy store, play tag in the village green, near the store, or explore the rest of Fairhaven with your child. It’s a relaxing way to spend the day.

Win a Night’s Stay in Delightful Fairhaven

Oh, here it comes. That looooong stretch between the last spring holidays and summer vacation. Why not plan now for a little getaway – a quick midweek break for a day or two?

Photo Credit: Fairhaven Village Inn

The Fairhaven Village Inn is offering a lucky family a free one-night stay at their deluxe hotel, valid Sunday-Thursday nights, for our Bellingham Midweek Getaway Giveaway.

You may remember that I stayed at the Fairhaven Village Inn a month or so ago, on our trip to Bellingham. I really liked it – cozy in-room fireplaces, a library with board games, free breakfast in the breakfast nook, and a perfect location, right in the heart of Bellingham’s historical Fairhaven district.

If you have elementary-age kids, ask the teacher if it’s OK first, of course. But a midweek getaway makes educational sense if you include the Whatcom Museum of History and Art, the American Museum of Radio and Electricity or the museum-gallery Mindport. And you can always schedule your getaway around an early-release day, if necessary.

Bellingham is about two hours north of Seattle, and about an hour south of Vancouver, BC.

Here’s how to enter:

You can enter a maximum of two times, using each method of entry ONLY once. You must enter via the first option (below). Please do not try to game the contest system in any way – you will be disqualified.

REQUIRED ENTRY: Read this article on Bellingham with kids and this article on Mindport. Next, return here to leave an entry below about what you want to do with your kids in Bellingham, Washington. Your entry must show up on this page. Don’t forget to leave your valid, correct e-mail address.

BONUS ENTRY: Become a fan of the CascadiaKids Facebook page and leave a response that says, “This is my bonus entry” under the post “Win a midweek getaway to Bellingham.”

Contest Rules:

This contest ends at 11:59 pm Pacific Standard Time on April 6, 2010. On April 8, 2010, the winner will be selected at random from all eligible entries received, using and will be notified by e-mail. Please ensure that you have entered the correct e-mail address in your entry. Your e-mail will not be sold or displayed.

If no response is received within 7 days from first e-mail notification, the first winner will forfeit the prize and another entrant will be selected at random using

Fairhaven Village Inn will provide the prize to the winner. The value of the hotel stay is $169. The prize is valid for a parkside room, on a Sunday through Thursday stay and must be redeemed by June 30, 2010. Please reserve your room as soon as possible, particularly if you plan to go in June. The prize information must be presented when making reservations. There is no cash value. There are no substitutions. The prize is not transferable. Winner is solely responsible for any national, state or city taxes incurred.

General Disclaimer: By participating in the “Midweek Getaway Giveaway,” you release and agree to hold harmless CascadiaKids subsidiaries, affiliates, directors, (collectively, the “Released Parties”) from any liability whatsoever for any claims, costs, injuries, losses, or damages of any kind arising out of or in connection with the Midweek Getaway Giveaway or acceptance, possession, or use of any prize (including, without limitation, claims, costs, injuries and losses related to personal injuries, death, damage to or destruction of property, rights of publicity or privacy, whether intentional or unintentional), whether under a theory of contract, tort (including negligence), warranty or other theory.