North House Folk School
While the harbor is the natural hub of Grand Marais, North House Folk School is the community hub. You can tell just by walking by. There’s an energy rolling off the campus. People are gathered around the wood-fired oven anticipating their breads and pizzas, across the way a group cooperatively lifts a beam on a timber frame building and you’re not even sure what craft is being learned and taught in the Red Building and the Blue Building. Inspired by Scandinavian Folk Schools, North House teaches traditional northern crafts in a student-centered environment and enriches community through wonderful events. Course listings, event details and more information are on their website, but when you’re in town, definitely stop down and see what’s going on. It may inspire to participate.
North House hosts the following annual events plus an occasional special event.
- Traditional Music Weekend :: 3rd weekend in March
- Northern Sustainability & Simple Living Symposium :: last weekend in April
- Boreal Birding & Northern Landscape Festival :: 1st weekend in June
- Wooden Boat Show & Summer Solstice Festival :: 3rd weekend in June
- Unplugged – The Northern Harvest [concert] :: 4th weekend of September
- Winterer’s Gathering & Arctic Film Festival :: 3rd weekend of November
From a half-day session on the basics of Cordwood Construction to a day of making Sausages for the Grill to a weekend making Birch Bark Berry Baskets to a 10-day class on Cedar-Strip Boat Building, North House offers the full gamut of courses. In general, all classes fit under one of the 18 course groupings they offer: basketry, boatbuilding, clothing and jewelry, fiber arts, foods, knitting, music, northern ecology, outdoor skills and travel, painting and photography, sailing, shelter, sustainable living, timber framing, tool making, traditional crafts, woodcarving, and woodworking.
The Blue Building on the west side of the campus houses a small shop filled with intriguing resources and crafts related to the offered workshops. Browse books, birch bark decorations and baskets, wooden cheese buttons, North House hats, tees and sweatshirts, Scandinavian wall hooks, rosemaled decorations and tools.
Day Trip to Grand Portage
The Gunflint Trail: The Trail that Became a Road
North House Folk School: Spring Classes
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