How do you inspire future generations of woodworkers? That's the theme of Rockler Woodworking and Hardware's
second annual Nordys Video Contest
, which opened for entries on Jan. 6 and is going on now. If you have a video camera or video recording capabilities on your smartphone, and two minutes’ worth of a personal story to share, Rockler hopes you'll submit it for all to see. In addition to the votes and accolades from viewers, your efforts could also land you one of four attractive prize packages.
Last year about this time, Rockler sponsored the inaugural Nordys video contest, in honor of company founder Nordy Rockler. The first video contest theme focused on “what inspires you to be a woodworker.” It drew a good response from fellow woodworking videophiles, and by the time the entry period ended, more than 30 videos were submitted for consideration. You can read about last year's Nordys by clicking here.
The enthusiasm generated by that contest prompted Ann Rockler, president and CEO, to give the Nordys a go again this year. "Following last year's contest," says Nathan Ensminger, Rockler's E-Commerce presentation manager, "there was a buzz here at Rockler headquarters as we were reminded of why we work so hard, and those glowing smiles that are behind every project."
There's a sense of both community and empowerment at work in these video contests, Ensminger suggests. When woodworkers connect and help each other grow, woodworking as a craft grows, too. Taking one's appreciation for woodworking, and channeling that into his or her efforts to teach the next generation, will help "push woodworking to new heights."
The process for entering this year's Nordys contest is simple. Just click here, or visit rockler.com and click on the Nordys tab on Rockler's homepage. You'll upload your video to YouTube during the process of filling out your online entry information. The video must be no longer than two minutes, and you can submit only one video — either as an individual or as part of a team — for this year's contest. Contestants must be 18 years of age to enter, and Rockler requests that you refrain from any form of advertising in your video. Participants from last year's Nordys, including the winners, can compete again this year. All videos must be submitted by Saturday, Feb. 22.
Make sure your video explains how you inspire the next generation of woodworkers, but don't harness your creativity, Nathan says, because the more unique your video submission, the more likely it will garner excitement, and equally important: popular votes.
Once you've uploaded your Nordys video, it will be viewable immediately on Rockler's Facebook page. There, you'll be able to view all of the video entries to date by clicking the "Vote" tab, and then place a vote for your favorite video of the day. You do not have to enter the contest in order to vote for your daily favorite, either. Anyone can cast "People's Choice" votes, and friends and family of entrants are encouraged to do so. You can also leave a supportive comment, if you choose. Ensminger hopes those interested in this year's Nordys will visit Rockler's Facebook page daily to cast more votes. Voting will end on Thursday, Feb. 27.
While there's still several weeks of time remaining to participate in the contest, don't dally. "Early birds have an opportunity to start accumulating popular votes as soon as their video is submitted," Nathan says. The videos garnering the most online votes will win the People's Choice prize packages.
As with last year's contest, a two-tier judging process will determine "Academy" and "People's Choice" prizes. A panel of Academy judges will be made up of more than 20 Rockler employees who will range in age, background, skill set and gender. The Academy will award first and second place prizes, based on the quality and thematic content of the videos entered. The First Place Prize is an "Ultimate Router Table Bundle," which includes Rockler's HPL router table and stand, a Ready2Rout automated fence, PORTER-CABLE 690LR router, casters and a bundle of routing accessories. It's a prize valued at more than $1,200. The "Ultimate Woodturner's Bundle" Second Place Academy prize (more than $600 value) consists of an Excelsior Mini Lathe and a set of carbide turning tools.
The two videos that receive the highest number of People's Choice votes win a different set of prize packages. Estimated at more than $280, the People's Choice First Place Prize will be an "Ultimate Finishing Bundle," which includes Rockler's HVLP Spray System, quart- and gallon-size Mixing Mate® Paint Lids, the new "Way to Woodwork" Finishing DVD, a four-pack of Bench Cookie® Cones, Work Grippers and Bridges and a 10-pack of premium finishing brushes. The Second Place Prize ($70 value) is an "Ultimate Gluing Bundle" that includes a quart of Titebond® III glue, Rockler's Glue Application Master Set, glue paddles and a double-edged scraper.
"We're very excited about all the extraordinary prize packages this year," Ensminger adds, which at more than $2,000 of total value is an increase from last year's winnings. "It's our effort to reward those that take some time out of their busy schedule to participate."
Winners will be announced the week of March 4, 2014. Rockler plans to create a video of this year's Nordys contest highlights and post that to its YouTube channel. For inspiration, you can view last year's highlight video here. The new highlights video will be presented to Ann and Nordy Rockler, and to employees at Rockler's Medina, Minnesota, headquarters for viewing at one of the company's 2014 quarterly meetings.
"Every customer has a story, and we're proud to provide a unique platform for them to tell it in this second annual Nordys Video Contest," Ensminger says. "Good luck to all of our Nordys contestants!"