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Taste the sweets of Whidbey

"Two Young Skandia Dansers, Tailor Comer, left front, and Justina Mackie Timmerman, show the handmade cedar birdhouse crafted by W.I.N.G.S. artisan Dale Comer, standing on right with his wife Lola Comer. On the left is Sandrajean Wainwright, jewelry artist and owner of The Wayward Son in Langley, which also stocks the confections Wainwright will use to decorate the birdhouse.Joan Soltys/staff photo3rd Annual Sweet Taste of WhidbeyDessert auction and light dinnerSaturday, March 10; dessert viewing at 5:45 p.m., dinner at 6:30, auction from 7:30-8:30 p.m.Christian & Missionary Alliance Church, LangleySponsored by Young Skandia DansersTickets: $3; call Linda Spencer, 360.341.1644Annual benefit auction showcases dessert extravaganzaTables of avid gourmets, raising prices higher and higher for delectable and irresistible plates of dessert creations: It's what's been happening at the Sweet Taste of Whidbey for the last two years at about this time of year, and it will take place again next Saturday at the third annual Sweet Taste of Whidbey.The event, set for March 10 from 5:45-8:30 p.m., is sponsored as a fund-raiser by the Young Skandia Dansers, a group of young people who have revived the centuries-old dances and costumes of Scandinavia as they were brought to this country and nurtured by America's new citizens.The benefit has been resoundingly successful.It was a definite sellout the last two years, said Linda Spencer, director of the Dansers. We ended up turning a few away at the door.Those who do attend will be treated first to a light dinner prepared by the Ester Moe Daughters of Norway.The Daughters will make their fabulous, ever-popular open faced sandwiches and of course salmon chowder and split pea soup, Spencer said. The dinner will be served by the adults of the Young Skandia Dansers.Before dinner, guests will be able to preview the desserts that are up for bid, while the Seattle Fiddlers entertain. They can also see the handcrafted chalet birdhouse decorated with chocolates that will be the centerpiece of a silent auction.The birdhouse was made by Dean and Lola Comer of WINGS -- Whidbey Island Nesting Gifts Specialties. With four coats of marine spar varnish on cedar, the birdhouse can safely be placed outside to entice feathered friends to take up residents. There is even a sign on the door that advertises Cheep Rent.Comer has been making original birdhouses for 13 years, moving three years ago to Whidbey Island.I started because Lola said she wanted a birdhouse. It kind of escalated from there, Comer said. WINGS birdhouses can now be seen at many fairs and festivals on the island, as well as at the Wild Birds Unlimited shop in Clinton and Cascadia Nauticals in Langley.The appealing little house will become even more so after going through a second design stage at The Wayward Son in Langley. Owner Sandrajean Wainwright, a fine art jeweler, has volunteered to dress the birdhouse in chocolates and other candies for the Sweet Taste of Whidbey silent auction.In addition to Wainwright's jewelry, her shop also has a confectionery section, with bowls and cases of chocolates, candies, even designer sweets: golf balls and baseballs, Fudge Fatale, Oregon caramels, Amy Turpin's Coyote Kitchen candies. There are even deviled eggs made of white chocolate; orange candy carrots; tiny bunnies and chicks for Easter baskets, made by Loveable Chocolates. The birdhouse decorations will have a spring theme, Wainwright said. I already have quite a few ideas in mind. Guests at The Sweet Taste of Whidbey will be able to bid on the birdhouse throughout the evening. They will also be entertained with the string music of The Island Chamber Orchestra (TICO) playing Norwegian and Swedish tunes during dinner, and by the Young Skandia Dansers at 7 p.m., just before the start of the dessert auction. This highlight of the evening will be emceed by Sue Frause and promises to be a lively event.We will have many desserts from restaurants, bakeries and various other sources to auction off, Spencer said. It was definitely fun last year to see the various tables competing with one another. Spencer said there will also be two julekaker from a Seattle Scandinavian bakery that will be given as door prizes.Profits from the Sweet Taste of Whidbey will support the Young Skandia Dansers, who have been in existence for only four years. The event will also benefit the scholarship fund for Nordic Heritage camp and St. Peter's Lutheran church, during its 100-year celebration. "

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