The vision of Mount Baker’s poetic and pretty triangular snow-capped cone on the horizon kept me focused even if at times it seemed like we were lost among duck farms by the highway. [It’s actually just thirty minutes from either Fairhaven where we came from or from US / Canadian border in a triangle.]
Set near the Nooksack Indian village, Squahalish, Lynden’s emergence story is worthy of a telenovela involving a colonel, an Indian princess, and a handsome hired hand [as told on its welcome sign]!
Past this love triangle, Holden and Phoebe Judson took over the abandoned colonel’s homestead along with the care for the latter’s daughters. Once in charge, Phoebe chose the name “Lynden” after the linden tree but changed the spelling because “it looked prettier.”
By 1895, families of Dutch descent from Whidbey Island (Washington) and Michigan arrived. Finding similar conditions to Holland’s in terms of climate and fertile soil, more Dutch families from within the United States came to settle here, moreso after WWII when Dutch immigrants direct from the Netherlands followed suit. Today, 50% of the population around Lynden is of Dutch heritage.
The Dutch influence on Lynden brought on the spurt of dairy farms. Raspberry, strawberry, blueberry, and corn farms flourished, too. An annual July Raspberry Festival is celebrated with a Raspberry Fun Run, winery and raspberry field tours, Razz and Shine Car Show, a rock wall, and Raspberry and Ice Cream All-Day Social. Lynden celebrates Sinterklaas/Lighted Christmas Parade (Dutch “Santa Claus” based on the fourth-century Greek bishop of Myra, present-day Turkey— Saint Nicholas who became the basis for US Santa Claus).
At one point, Lynden arguably held the “Most Churches” world record. Most businesses closed on Sundays although of late, businesses have begun to open on Sundays. Up to 2008, alcohol sale was prohibited on Sundays.
Front Street’s four-block section is referred to as Dutch Old Town where Dutch architectural design with the inclusion of a 72-foot working windmill, restaurants serving Dutch food and desserts by servers in native clothing pay tribute to the town’s Dutch heritage. [BTW, the 72-foot windmill on this article’s cover photo has three rooms inside it among six that comprise the Dutch Village Inn. How many chances will you have of “sleeping in in a windmill?” As many times as you stay at the Dutch Village Inn!]
Dutch Village Mall with the Lynden Community Theater:
Avenue Bread, Drizzle, and Village Books which have stores here and in Fairhaven Historic District . If you have time, there is a nearby interesting Pioneer Museum you can visit.
Heidi and I couldn’t resist stepping into Dutch Bakery.
There were so many treats to try, we faced the serious dilemma of what to get. “Which product is your specialty?” I asked the lady behind the counter. “Everything here is our specialty,” she answered. “May I just step in for a minute?” the lady from behind us volunteered. “I always come all the way here to get the apple pie. It is so good!” Dilemma solved!
The pastry and the caramel topping are not too sweet, the apples are firm to the bite. Dutch Bakery’s apple pie really is quite good! Thank you, dear Lady!
The 142-foot Welcome mural below painted in 2002 by Lynden artist, Bill Swinburnson, for a national beautification contest, “America in Bloom” features Dutch design storefronts and flowers with the word “Welkom” in Dutch.
Street planters and even gravel road corners are decorated with pretty plants.
We were entertained at Rustic Cottage Home & Garden Decor, a store selling a wide selection of new and vintage gifts where stay-at-home-mom owner, Melissa Van Datta, finds rejected or neglected antiques which she repurposes into useful pieces that can complement modern decor. [What do you think of that beautiful illustration of breathing new purpose and life into something?]
Here’s one of my favorite finds, made lovingly stitch by stitch:
[And here’s one that I found out a couple days later would match Mai’s burgundy tablecloth and hunter green chair backs so perfectly!!!]
I’ve read a review after my Lynden visit that Edaleen Ice Cream on Grover Street is among the very best ice creams ever. That goes on my bucket list for next visit here, Lord willing; the region beyond Nooksack has plenty more nooks to explore in the Pacific Northwest, famous for its splendid mountain landscapes, glacial lakes, national parks, evergreen forests.
As we conclude our trip, Heidi saw this sign:
Dear Lord, whatever this is for, thank You for this advanced encouragement from Lynden. You are in charge.
What a beautiful day with Heidi! Thank you!
And the last triangle in mind to thank is the triune Father (Driver), Son (The Word/ map), and Holy Spirit (Tour Guide) for the gift of Yourself throughout our daily journeys.