A bunch of us on the Chuckanut Transition Initiating Committee are chipping in to buy a nice old cider press that woodworker, Keith Witter of Alger has agreed to help refurbish. After all the wood has been replaced and a motor attached to the hand crank, the press will be donated to the Alger Community Hall as a resource the whole community can share. If interested contact us by December 1st at email@example.com. Thank you!
Bow Little Market vendors help shape a new economy of wood by utilizing resources often overlooked and underused. Dan Sweaney, who lives just down the road from the Beau Lodge on Wood Road, is a good example of someone learning to responsibly manage his woodlot as a vital resource to his wood working business. Out of his own woodlot, Sweaney harvests fallen cedars left over from a 100-year-old logging operation. From neighboring logging sites, he scavenges waste wood. A birch tree, once planted too close to his house endangering people and property, was taken down and milled at Bormuth’s neighborhood sawmill up the street on Barrell Springs Road. It now sits curing in his shop awaiting the time it will be converted into stools and tables.
Allen Berry, another Bow Little Market vendor, uses sustainably, locally harvested wood for his drop spindles, knitting needles, and crochet hooks. Lilac and holly are some of his favorite woods to use. Although he has no woodlot of his own, he collects an abundance of free materials. Just this summer, with permission from owner, he harvested an ancient lilac tree that had fallen over in a snow storm because it had grown to shaded, spindly and weak. This one tree will provide him years of free wood for his hooks and needles, a discount he then passes on to his customers. Berry grew up in the American Southwest and was strongly influenced by Native American heritage of crafting with what nature provides and has spent his whole life learning and experimenting with resources that are natural, free and abundant if you only open your eyes.
Both Dan and Allen are essential volunteers for the Bow Little Market. Dan spends hours helping set up and break down the market every week. Allen, a retired sign painter, kindly donates his time and skill to make much of our hand lettered signage. Through both their craft and volunteer efforts, these men are helping to build a new localized, more cooperative economy that fits within the limits of our beautiful place here in the Samish Watershed.
Pat Curran, Alger Fire Department’s (Skagit Fire District 14) new commissioner, is reaching out to the community to improve moral and connect with people by answering questions and receiving feedback. The Alger Fire Hall is also looking for more volunteers. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. There will be a community question and answer time with the Commissioner scheduled at the Alger Community Hall in January. Stay tuned for the date.
Notes on October Transition Fidalgo's Seventh Generation Supper. Sarai Stevens of Chuckanut Transition presented that evening.
Transition Fidalgo & Friends
Seventh Generation Supper
Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013 - Anacortes Senior Center
61 people enjoyed another tasty soup supper, as well as music provided by the wonderful Carter family: Rob, Sommer, & Jade along with Sommer's brother, Andrew. Evelyn emceed and started by reviewing TF&F's objectives, then shared some writing by Sandra Steingraber to help introduce the evening's speaker, Sarai Stevens, artist, activist, and co-founder of the Bow Little Market ("where the little guy's a big deal") and Chuckanut Transition.
In 2009, after working for years towards sustainability on her own land, Sarai feared that isolated efforts would never be enough to face the challenges ahead. Inspired by love and concern, she strives to create a resilient community her children can grow up in and inherit.
As a parent, Sarai believes we should be open and honest with children about the economic, environmental and social crises they are inheriting as long as we model empowerment and positive action. She wrote and illustrated the book of paper cuts, Seeds For A New Day, to emphasize the great opportunity before us. She notes that although we can’t control what we need to respond to, we can control how we respond, and we can use this opportunity to build more joyful, healthy, and connected lives.
Sarai pointed out that CO2 is rising to alarming levels. Big business and big banking control the world's money with 40% of the wealth held by 1% of the people. Consumption of one barrel of oil equals the effort of one person working 3-1/2 years, 8 hours a day, 5 days a week (we can see why we became so dependent on oil). However, we use 10 calories of energy to make one calorie of food in the US. This dependence is not sustainable. Initially we had a return of 100 gallons of oil for every 1 gallon of oil used to produce it. Now, we gain only 10 gallons of oil for every 1 gallon of oil, and eventually we'll get to the point where it takes 1 gallon of oil to produce 1 gallon of oil consumed - a washout. Sarai does not want us to become "hopelessly indifferent" but urged us to build creative resilient communities where people join up and collectively work together, and she shared examples from her own life. She hopes homes and communities will become centers of production and not centers of consumption.
Sarai shared her book Seeds for a New Day (co-authored with husband Mike) which was written from her perspective as mother to 3 boys, and which follows Earth's children as they learn to live lives that respect earth's limits. She also noted how she was inspired by the book, "Wilson's World," in which a young boy paints a bright and beautiful world. But it fills up with too many people, buildings, cars, and pollution, so Wilson paints himself a better world, one that people will want to keep bright and beautiful.
To learn more about Sarai and to see her art, visit her website playmeanewsong.weebly.com.
We took a five-minute break so that folks could see Sarai's papercuts, purchase her book, and fill out a Transition survey. Then we had our announcements.
· -- Gaia Rising Farm is hosting a potluck and cider pressing on Saturday, Nov 9th @ 7389 Chestnut Lane on Guemes Island. This will start about 10am. If you want to bring cider home
please bring some apples and containers. The potluck will be around 1pm. Please RSVP to Sequoia at 293-2980.
· --The Time Bank is going strong but still wants lots of folks to participate. Mary Beth Conlee took a quick poll to see if people were interested in the Time Bank hosting a caroling party in December (yes). 3 people signed tonight on as new Time Bank members.
· --Karen Richman needs help moving this week - particularly on Friday. Karen also has 6 chickens that are laying eggs but she cannot take them with her to the new home in Mt. Vernon. If you can assist her or want some chickens, please contact Karen at 360-708-9980.
· --Andrew Vehlin and family are hosting a 5th Street "Trick or Treat" this Thursday from 6:30 - 9:30 pm. Second house behind the Kiwanis Thrift Shop (you'll see them!) "Come if you dare to be scared."
· --Evelyn announced that we've extended the popular skillshare workshop series and this Tuesday, Nov 5th, at the Library (6:30-8 pm), Melany Vorass-Herrera, author of The Front Yard Forager, will talk about the delicious world of urban foraging. After 22 years as an environmental policy analyst and technical author, Melany now teaches foraging workshops up and down the west coast. Her book, which includes recipes on how to prepare nutritious wild edibles, will be available for purchase.
· --Evelyn also noted that this Saturday (11/2, 1-3pm) there will be a Padilla Bay seminar on "Climate Change in the Pacific NW. How has our local climate changed and what can we expect next?" Patty Glick, Senior Climate Change Specialist at the Nat Wildlife Fed, will share the latest science on the impacts of climate change on coastal habitats and ecosystems in the PNW. Free, but please call to register at 428-1558.
· -- Mark Anderson, Project Manager at Whidbey Sun & Wind is sponsoring an "Anacortes Solar Now" campaign that is now into Tier 2 of discount pricing due to great interest from the Fidalgo and Guemes community. WS&W is also extending the contracting deadline from October 31st to Nov 15th! Contact Mark at (W) 360-678-7131 or mobile 360-632-6504.
· Next TF&F meeting, November 26th. The evening presentation will focus on the community solar project as well as PSE's green energy challenge.
Bud Anderson, TF&F Secretary
Chuckanut Transition Community
We're all rural, independent and capable people learning to live cooperatively with one another and with our natural surroundings while recreating our lost village economic network.