Make.Shift seeks new Volunteer Coordinator!

Make.Shift Art Space is looking for a Volunteer Coordinator! This position is crucial in organizing all of our lovely volunteers. This position also includes:
Training new volunteers
Scheduling volunteers for events
Recruiting new volunteers
Retaining our volunteer base

Other skills required include:
Good communication skills (written, verbal)
Experience managing others (volunteers preferred)
Positive attitude, support and commitment to Make.Shift’s mission

Please submit a resume and cover letter to Accepting applications until Friday, February 20th, 2015. Position start date: March 1st, 2015.

Compensation: Monthly stipend

Make.Shift Receives LPFM Radio License

Make.Shift is excited to announce that we recently received an FCC license to build a low-power FM community radio station in Bellingham.

We’re in the early feasibility and budgeting stages of this project, and are seeking community input in addition to monetary and equipment donations. Please join us for a public visioning meeting on Oct. 11 at the downtown Bellingham Co-Op Connections Building, 1220 N Forest St. There we’ll outline the next steps in moving forward with this new project, including projected budget, fundraising goals, and equipment needed. We will also be accepting tax-deductible monetary donations. We want to hear from residents on what you’d like to see in a new community radio station, talk about how to get involved, and brainstorm with others who love radio.

Low Power FM stations (LPFM) are community-based, non-commercial radio stations that operate at 100 watts or less and reach a radius of 3 to 7 miles. With the help of radio advocacy group Common Frequency, Make.Shift applied for an LPFM license in 2013, during what may have been the last application window ever for LPFM stations across the nation. We received our licence earlier this year.

Please join us on Sat. Oct. 11 at 3 p.m. at the Co-Op Community Connections Building to learn more.

Heck Yeah, 2013

Talk about a banner year. We are so proud of our hardworking volunteers, our amazing tenants, and our community, whose incredible support we couldn’t live without.

In 2013, Make.Shift: Won Best Bellingham Gallery for the second year in a row; Raised $20k to make major fire safety improvements; Installed a killer honor system soda fridge; Installed heating in the basement for the first time EVER; Sold more art than ever before; Welcomed The Documentary Center and Guitar Doctor as new tenants; and so much more.


Fire Code Fundraiser Success!

We set our fundraising goal at $20k, and thanks to all of YOU Make.Shift has reached and surpassed our target!

A huge thank you to all of our awesome friends and neighbors who helped make these past months of fire code updates such a success. We have completed work on one new fire exit, and the second is well underway… which means we hope to see you back in the Make.Shift basement for all-ages live music as early as January!

Stay tuned for further updates.


Nightmare on Railroad Ave.: A Haunted House

Empty your bladder and put on your game face — Make.Shift is taking over the Boundary Bay Brewery beer garden for two nights of terror! 

Be prepared for a full-blown haunted house full of live actors, chilling detail, and unbelievable scares. This event is ALL AGES, but be warned that this may be too scary for little ones. MUAHAHA.

7-11 p.m. Wed. Oct. 30
7-11 p.m. Thurs. Oct. 31

Boundary Bay beer available for purchase for those 21+.

Forgot a costume or wanna jazz yours up? Let our makeup artists paint your face while you wait in line!

Fire Code: Your Questions Answered

Make.Shift stopped hosting live shows at our all-ages, drug-free basement venue back in late April, after a routine inspection by the Bellingham Fire Department. Understandably, we’ve gotten a lot of questions about what this means for shows, for safety, and for Make.Shift’s future as a whole. We hope the following information will help answer those questions.

In Transition:

Make.Shift is in a transitional period after five years of operation (two in our current downtown location). Our building was recently purchased by new owners, and all of the tenants in our building including Make.Shift are being asked to sign new leases, which include rent adjustments. The timing of this coincided with a routine visit from the fire department, which found that the basement was not up to current basement fire code, and needed additional emergency exiting. We are working closely with our new landlord, the fire department and the city to get our facility in compliance.

Why Exiting is Necessary:

It’s important to note that Make.Shift’s basement currently has two functional exits, and our safety record is exemplary. We take the safety of our tenants and patrons very seriously, and we’re eager to get Make.Shift up to the highest standard of safety. The Bellingham Fire Department notes that additional emergency exiting is necessary for any use that could occur in the basement, not just Make.Shift operations, or live music. If we were to move out of this space, these upgrades would still need to be made in order for the space to be leased for any business, and any type of use. To build this new exit, our property manager Daylight Properties will re-cut the original basement exit opening, which was since filled with concrete. This change to the building will affect a ground-floor building tenant by eliminating some square footage from their space. Since this historic opening is the only viable option for an exit, and since the exit must be installed for any basement tenant and any use, Daylight is working with all tenants to impact their spaces as little as possible.

At What Cost?

As you can imagine, the cost to implement these adjustments is high and will result in an increase to our rent. There are also other likely building improvements that Make.Shift will be responsible for. We will know what these are once the city signs off on the necessary changes to the building. This increase in expenditures was unexpected at this time, so we’re currently conducting a fundraiser to help us get over this hump as we work to find new and innovative ways to sustainably offset this cost increase. We’re proud of our financial track record and are confident we will be able to continue to operate. (If you are interested in our financial details, click here.)

Make.Shift has enjoyed becoming a part of downtown’s art district. We are proud to house more than 20 local bands and 10 local artists at any given time, many of whom have grown here and gone on to open their own studios and businesses. In the last two years we’ve hosted nearly 30 art exhibitions in our award-winning gallery, featuring the art of innovative local and regional artists. In the last year alone we’ve held more than 50 all-ages, drug- and alcohol-free concerts, and we’re proud to participate in local events like Art Walk, Bellingham Rock Camp, Girls Rock Camp, Yellingham, What’s Up! Magazine’s 15th Anniversary, The Make.Shift Block Party, the Holiday Make.Sale, and more.

Looking Toward the Future:

We look forward to offering even more music and art and continuing to be a safe and positive place for people of all ages. We appreciate the incredible support we’ve received from this community, and can’t wait to create new and exciting programming for 2014. If you have any questions please contact us at If you’d like to support Make.Shift as we go through this transitional period, please consider donating here.

We love our patrons, and all the cool things that happen at Make.Shift! We want to hear from you about your favorite moment, show or artwork. Please send your experience (long or short!) to:

Check out our 2013 Financial Reporting

Make.Shift’s awesome programs are made possible by more than just big dreams and youthful idealism. We want you to know where our money comes from and where it goes. Check out our most recent financial reporting below. Have questions? Email us at info(at)
























Alternative Library to Move in October

Exciting news from the Alternative Library: The Library, which has grown incredibly during their year at Make.Shift, plans to move into a larger downtown space of their own as soon as October.

The Alt. Library has been an incredible addition to the Make.Shift family, and we’ll miss their awesome services, volunteers and patrons. But we’re excited to see how the project develops in its new location. We often call Make.Shift an “arts incubator” space, and the Library is a true success story in that way — from their early days at the Sushi House, to their continued growth at Make.Shift, we know their are great things in their future!










Get Make.Shift Up To Code

This is it! Check out this video hot off the press, and help us reach our fundraising goal. Your donations will go directly to keeping Make.Shift’s doors open!



 A fire inspection at Make.Shift Art Space means we cancan no longer provide live, all-ages concerts — until we do major improvements to get our building up to code.

We’re a thriving, financially self-sustaining arts & music hub, but we need your help to make these unforeseen safety improvements. Help us keep the doors of our unique art & music community open!


• We provide studio space for more than 50 local artists and musicians, encouraging artistic development, collaboration, and community building.

• Our drug- and alcohol-free concerts provide a healthy, safe space for more than 700 youth every month.

• We displayed work by more than 200 local and regional artists in our award-  winning gallery last year.

• More than 400 people attend our monthly gallery receptions.

Special thanks to Bill Badgely (Molasses Manifesto) for the video and to Ben Wildenhaus for composing the score.