Ignite the Night -2024

Join us on May 18th for our 5th Annual Fundraising Gala!

This evening is sure to Ignite your imagination with delicious food, captivating auction items, engaging hands-on experiences, and so much more. This annual event provides vital support for the Museum’s educational programs and mission to provide STEM Education to our county and beyond.

This year a portion of the Funds raised at the event will go towards our Capital Campaign for WONDERLAB – a fully interactive science gallery for children and families at the Museum. This is our most ambitious and exciting project yet and we can’t wait to take you with us! Learn More about WONDERLAB…

Event Details

Bellingham Cruise Terminal
355 Harris Ave.
Bellingham, WA 98225

5:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Doors open at 5:30

Contact Abby at abby@sparkmuseum.org or 360.738.3886

5:30 pm – Cocktail Hour
Enjoy drinks, electrifying hands-on experiences, appetizers, and raffle items

6:15 pm – Dinner & Program
Enjoy a delicious buffet dinner, a live auction, Raise the Paddle, and some electrifying fun!

*Attire: Cocktail/business casual…dress for fun!

Live Auction Preview

Auction Sneakpeek 2024 by Abby Whatley


Thank you to our Sponsors!

Interested in being an Event Sponsor?

Contact Abby at abby@sparkmuseum.org

The SPARK Award – Marty Cunningham

Marty Cunningham grew up in North Seattle on the water, in the water, and in the mountains. As the daughter of an architect and a music teacher, Marty’s childhood was infused with art and music, elements that continue to enrich her life today. Two older brothers modeled and supported her love of science and engineering. Her gearhead brother taught her everything from electrical engineering to marine biology by including his little sister in the rebuilding of cars and the exploration of the waters of the Salish Sea. Coming to Bellingham to attend Huxley College of Environmental Studies at Western in the late 70s, she gravitated toward the educational aspect of her love of science. During this time, she met her husband of 41 years, Jack, and soon had their son, Ryder, and made Bellingham her home. Returning to school at WWU in the mid-90s she earned her BS in Elementary Education and a few years later, a Masters in Literacy. She is a National Board certified teacher who was a finalist for the Presidential Award for Science Teaching in 2001. Marty will be retiring this June after a fulfilling career as an elementary teacher working for the Mount Baker School District.

Throughout Marty’s teaching career, it has been critical that her students experience an approach to science which includes hands-on, inquiry based opportunities so the awe of science transforms and enriches their view of the world. In order for students to get the most out of experiential learning, she feels that they need to be prepared. Therefore, Marty teaches to the whole child, making sure that their foundational knowledge and skills lead them to that next level of understanding and wonder of discovery. Being a sixth grade teacher the majority of her professional life, she hopes that every student leaves her classroom curious, wanting more knowledge and equipped with the skills necessary to problem solve and apply science to their everyday lives. In addition, it’s important that her students can and do think for themselves when considering the future of our environment, social justice, and their personal responsibilities as positive contributors to our community. When Marty leaves the classroom in June, she will continue to teach. She plans to teach art in her treehouse studio, and to work with NSEA – the Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association and Common Threads – our community’s school gardening program while still playing in and on the water and in the mountains.