And, while I can repeat what I have done for the past three holiday seasons and harp on the gift-building/gift-giving process, what I want to do is use today’s column as a sort of a to-do list. Besides giving you a little break from the holiday hubbub, it will give you a little something to look forward to once the presents are unwrapped and we’re back to normal.
On January 28, Heritage Village, my county’s historical park, is hosting its annual Folk Festival. This event has always proven to be one of the most popular on the calendar. They have music, food and craft demonstrations featuring weavers, blacksmiths and other skilled trades from back in the county’s pioneer past. The only craft I really have yet to see at the event is – surprisingly – woodworking.
That’s why I have asked the St. Petersburg Woodcrafter’s Guild to help me remedy this situation. We’re working on a plan to bring a number of guild members up to Heritage Village that day to build a workbench. Well, maybe ‘build’ is too ambitious of a term. We may need to mill all of the components to size in advance and then bring them to the site to cut the final joinery and assemble it. I’m working now to get some southern yellow pine donated to the effort, and I hope to get over to the park soon to check out any antique fixtures (vises, holdfasts, etc.) that we can use for the project.
Oh… and I guess I’m going to need a plan for a workbench appropriate for – say the 1920s in the deep south…
The week of February 5 – 11, I’m hoping to get some other woodworkers involved in the first ever Get Woodworking Week. Modeled after Marc Spagnuolo’s successful Woodworker Safety Week, this event is an opportunity for woodworking bloggers – and hopefully, more people, companies and publications out in the woodworking community – to encourage others to give the craft a try. I want this to be an open-ended effort with everyone participating having free reign to publicize whatever they want. Some of the ideas would be:
- Teach a youngster (or group of youngsters) about the craft
- Share the story of how you got started in woodworking
- Discuss what a budding woodworker should have in his or her tool kit
- Design and build some projects a novice could handle with a minimum amount of tools
- Challenge yourself to build something with basic tools
Basically, anything that can create a buzz about our craft, with an emphasis on sharing your story with others. Offer encouragement for the wannabe woodworker to get off the couch and explore the world of woodworking on their own.
I also have the big art contest coming up in January. Since I’m planning on taking a week off between Christmas and New Years, I’m going to have to get on the stick and start building something to enter. Maybe my first chair? Who knows!