The Yorker Online

Upcoming Events


Student Tips


Trees of York


Lights On, Please!


Samish Way News


Welcome to the York Neighborhood Association Website!

Revised 2022-08-19 0410

  “Welcome to York” sign

Click here for the latest issue of The Yorker newsletter (August 2022).

The York Neighborhood Association (YNA) exists to preserve and enhance the community and engage citizens in civic affairs. We work to promote a safe, comfortable, and thriving urban neighborhood bordering downtown Bellingham, Washington.

As a neighborhood, we are involved in planning for the future, historic preservation, traffic and pedestrian safety, social events, and park improvements. If you live or work in the York Neighborhood, we hope you’ll get involved!

Use our contact page to subscribe to the YNA List and indicate other interests.



Upcoming Events


  • York Neighborhood Annual Picnic


    Date/Time: Sunday, September 11, 2022, 3pm to 5pm, at Harriet Spanel Park (corner of Whatcom and Grant streets)

    Our picnics were cancelled in 2020 and 2021, due to COVID concerns, so we are delighted to once again celebrate as a neighborhood of friends.

    • Live Music
    • Games for Kids
    • Kids’ Talent Show — come play your instrument, sing a song, do gymnastics, or show your art. All participants receive a prize!
    • Piñata Smash
    • Food - Hempler’s hot dogs and beverages provided. If you wish, please bring a potluck dish to share: salad, side dish, or dessert.
    • And bring a chair so you are comfortable!
    • A portable toilet will be on site.


  • Meet Parks Department Head Nicole Oliver!

    Date/Time: Friday, August 5, 2022,

    Nicole Oliver, the new director of Bellingham’s Parks and Recreation Department, will be visiting all of the town’s parks this summer to personally assess their status and meet with the neighbors who use them and see their activity. She will be at Harriet Spanel Park at 2:00pm and then at Rock Hill Park at 3:30pm. Come let her know what you think of York’s parks and how the Parks Department is doing in maintaining them!


  • York Neighborhood Board of Directors Meeting (hybrid)

    Hybrid: Please note, YNA is new to hybrid (in person / virtual) meetings and we are working to improve with every meeting.

    Date/Time: Fourth Wednesday Each Month (except August & December) , 6:30pm meeting
    Next Meeting: August 24, 2022

    Location - In Person: Norway Hall—1419 North Forest Street

    • Parking is available, and the building is ADA-accessible.
    • Note: The doors will be locked once our meeting begins at 6:30pm, so please do be prompt (but someone can run up to let you in if you are late).
    • Zoom access codes will be posted ahead of the meeting.

      Questions? Contact: Colin Beazley.

      Proposed Agenda:



    Student Tips

    Welcome to incoming York student residents!

    Nestled between Downtown Bellingham and the freeway, the York neighborhood is a friendly, green, fun, peaceful haven…an eclectic mix of families and students, homeowners and renters, parks and pets, and a variety of businesses ranging from grocery stores, restaurants, and breweries to healthcare practitioners, social services, and auto shops.

    Every fall, a new group of students arrive who don’t really know where they have landed. Check out the flyer at right for some tips for how you can make your time among us a good one.

    Moving Out? Pack It Out!—Education campaign against refuse in our greenways and alleys

    YNA’s 2020 Dumpster Day and WWU’s 2020 Move Out Madness were unable to be scheduled due to CoViD-19 response & concerns. The first annual “Moving Out? Pack It Out!” campaign is providing alternatives.

    The campaign name/slogan is based on the time-tested Leave No Trace—Pack It In, Pack It Out campaign for our wildernesses.
    Think of this as an Urban Leave No Trace (except memories).

    Those interested in a yard sign or poster for your window, please send
    Signs will be picked up after the campaign.

    This campaign is a partnership between the City of Bellingham, Western Washington University, and the York Neighborhood Association.




    Trees of York

    Break that cabin fever with a walk around York, and check out our neighborhood’s trees!

    Use these maps to explore the historic trees of the York neighborhood as well as the trees of Harriet Spanel Park.

    Historic Trees of the York Neighborhood—February 2019     Trees of Harriet Spanel Park—February 2019



    Lights On, Please

    Porch lights brighten up the neighborhood and deter unsavory behavior. An LED bulb will save tons of energy ($), alleviating the guilt of leaving outside lights on. And your mail carrier and delivery people will be grateful, too, for safer navigation to and from your door!



    Samish Way News

    October 2019—Ground Broken! — Take a few minutes to check out the former Aloha Motel site, along Samish Way between Otis, Laurel, Abbott, and Maple streets! At the end of October, the Bellingham Housing Authority hosted the groundbreaking for the new building which will be constructed over the next year and a half, with leasing to start in early 2021.

    This building will house fixed-rent apartments, as well as street-level commercial tenants, and was designed to serve as part of the Samish Way Urban Village Plan (2009). The housing authority will have proprietary interest in this new building, as they will be be among the very first tenants!

    The development will be just across Samish Way from the York Neighborhood’s south leg, so it will be part of our community.

    Regarding the project during the CoViD-19 response period:

    “Governor Inslee’s Stay Home - Stay Healthy Proclamation specifically identifies construction of low-income housing as essential work. As you’ve probably noticed, Dawson Construction has prominently posted “Essential Work Site” banners on the construction fence. They have also implemented an impressively sophisticated set of social distancing/pandemic safety protocols in accordance with Centers for Disease Control guidelines.

    At this point, construction continues to move forward and the City is conducting inspections as required by code. Feel free to keep your fingers crossed for us as we move forward!”

    —Brien Thane, Bellingham & Whatcom County Housing Authorities, April 3, 2020


  • If you desire to present something to Yorkers:

    If you have a presentation you would like to give or a question to place before Yorkers and neighbors, we would love to hear from you. Please contact our or , and we will discuss opportunities. Please note meeting time can be limited, and contacting us well in advance really helps us allocate time for your topic.