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Honeysuckle Coat Hooks

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Invasive honeysuckle is cut from the hedgerow between fields.

Invasive honeysuckle is cut from the hedgerow between fields.

I can’t help it;  since last Friday, I have required every person who walks through the door to stop and admire our new honeysuckle coat hooks.  I love them!  Made from invasive bush honeysuckle, they are the epitome of a win-win project:

we cut down the invasive plants, and we made something both useful and beautiful from them.

Branches are cut close to the trunk, making natural hooks.

Branches are cut close to the trunk, making natural hooks.

 

 

 

 

Each piece of honeysuckle is peeled, ends are rounded, and rough places are sanded.

Each piece of honeysuckle is peeled, ends are rounded, and rough places are sanded.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hurrah for Robin Chesnut-Tangerman who shared the idea, showed examples that he had made at home, and guided students through to the completion of the project.

 

Congratulations to the students who persevered through cutting, carving, sanding, oiling, drilling, and mounting.

The board and hooks are oiled before the coat hanger is assembled.

The board and hooks are oiled before the coat hanger is assembled.

 

 

 

!

Each hook has screw holes drilled before attaching.

Each hook has screw holes drilled before attaching.

 

 

 

 

Logging and Honeysuckle

IMG_7466What do a lost logging village in the Green Mountains, a French-Canadian “cirque”, Christmas trees and invasive honeysuckle have in common?  Answer:  they were all part of the curriculum at YouthWork & Learn last week.

IMG_7405Monday, our guest instructor was Brad Bender, president of the Danby-Mt. Tabor Historical Society. After hearing the history of Silas Griffith, local business and logging millionaire of the 19th century, we headed out to the remains of two of his logging villages.  Various adventures later (through snow and high water), we explored the remnants of barns, railways, and one of the first fish hatcheries in the U.S.  We’ll go back in the spring for more hands-on history, including a closer look at hill made of saw dust.

Tuesday, we drove north to Burlington.  As part of our interest in the history and economics of logging, we enjoyed an inspiring performance of the Cirque Alfonse “Timber” at the Flynn Center, a rustic-themed performance that included log tossing, hatchet juggling, and saw jumping.IMG_7458

Wednesday and Friday we continued with our project of turning invasive bush honeysuckle branches into coat hooks.  We also cut Christmas trees, including the Smokey House Center tree donated to the annual gift-giving to the children of Danby, courtesy of a legacy of Silas Griffith (see above).  Friday we also met with SHC director Jesse Pyles, who talked to us about the history and mission of Smokey House and as well as the management of its natural and economic resources.  A full week indeed!IMG_7449