Photos by Kim McNeelan and Dan Cary
For the weekend of June 17-19, 2016, I encourage you to take a dreamy drive up the North Shore of Lake Superior. Don’t get lost in the beauty of the millions of blooming Lupine. Don’t stare off into the seemingly endless body of water for too long. Just enjoy your scenic journey past raging water ravines and the millions of acres of trees in the Superior National Forest. The beauty and excitement will continue when you arrive at North House Folk School in Grand Marais, MN. The Wooden Boat Show and Summer Solstice Festival will be happening!
Last June, I was able to attend the magical event. It was definitely an adventure, and the weekend was a special treat for anyone that enjoys a creative passionate craft community. There were gorgeously crafted wooden boats of various types, boat building demonstrations, guest speakers, a silent auction, live entertainment, and wonderful meals all taking place in a breath taking environment full of wonderful camaraderie.
The boats ranged in style and age. Canoes, kayaks, sailboats, dinghies, etc. were some of the awesome styles of boats on show. The variety of boats provides a display of different construction techniques and varying types of wood. It is very interesting to hear enthusiasts ‘shop talk’ about boat construction.
If you want to bring someone that might be less enthusiastic about geeking out about wooden boats, don’t hesitate because there is a range in activities. There was a delicious brunch on Saturday morning, baking classes, natural dye making classes, a Summer Solstice Pageant on Saturday night, various dance and music opportunities, and speakers and programming that went Friday night through Sunday.
The “Solstice Pageant” was one of my favorite parts of the weekend. The huge puppets, live band, and Lake Superior backdrop really kept the crowd’s attention.
North House Folk School is a special place that is focused on creating community around the preservation of traditional Scandinavian crafts. Check out the website: Northhouse.org for more information and this year’s schedule of events.
Kimberly McNeelan has been a woodworker for about 14 years. She’s been coast to coast and beyond studying different woodworking techniques, learning from various masters, and working on a wide array of projects. Read more of Kimberly’s latest adventures.