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Boreal Community Media

It Takes a Community to Host a Community Event

Jun 23, 2022 10:08AM ● By Laura Durenberger
Photo: After a two-year hiatus, the community gathered for the return of the Good Harbor Hill Players’ Solstice Pageant - North House Folk School

From the North House Folk School - June 23, 2022

Last weekend North House Folk School hosted the 25th annual Wooden Boat Show, marking the start of summer, drawing thousands of guests to campus over the three days, and bringing together numerous community organizations and local businesses.

“I want to thank this community for all the work and generosity that goes into making the Wooden Boat Show a success,” said Executive Director, Greg Wright, “It’s so much fun having neighbors and friends on campus as we celebrate 25 years of craft and community on the harbor.”

The Grand Marais Lions Club BBQ was a huge hit at the Community Open House and Pie Social - North House Folk School


On Friday night, the Grand Marais Lions Club hosted their 10th  annual BBQ Fundraiser on campus, raising over $800 in support of their work in the community. It followed a talk by Ben Larson and Zack  Smith of North Superior Fishery that brought in a curious crew of folks excited to learn more about commercial fishing in Grand Marais.

Beth Kennedy helped prepare and serve the fresh baked bread to hungry chowder fans at this year’s Lake Superior Chowder experience, which benefited Empty Bowls’ work towards fighting food insecurity in the community.


Saturday’s Lake Superior Chowder Experience raised $4000 in support of Empty Bowls Cook County with the line stretching from the blue building all the way to Highway 61. “When North House contacted me about partnering with Empty Bowls this year at the Wooden Boat Show, I was thrilled,” said Empty Bowls board member, Beth Kennedy, “this is the first Empty Bowls event since 2019, and the support will go a long way toward feeding people in our community.” Special thanks goes to The Angry Trout, The Bad Seed, Beth’s Fudge, Birch Terrace, Bluefin Bay, Blue Water Cafe, Cascade Lodge, Cook County Whole Foods Co-op, Fisherman’s Daughter, Hungry Hippie Tacos, Lutsen Resort, and Trail Center Lodge for their donations to the event and the more than 300 people that participated.

 The Sun King made his triumphant return in the Good Harbor Hill Players Summer Solstice Pageant - North House Folk School

The weekend crescendoed with the return of the beloved Solstice Pageant put on by the Good Harbor Hill Players. This year’s performance included acrobatic lynxes, a caterpillar's metamorphosis, and a massive moose - along with the Sun King celebrating the longest day of the year. A recording of the performance will be available online soon.


The Northwoods Fiber Guild led youths from the Y camp and kids of all ages in lots of fiber art projects - North House Folk School

North House also hosted free family crafts throughout the weekend in partnership with the North Woods Fiber Guild which brought Y Camp participants down Friday afternoon and welcomed kids aged 2-102 to create fiber art.


Zack Smith and Ben Larson from North Superior Fishery concluded their community conversation with a walk down the dock to go over the workings of their boat and talk more about their experience fishing Lake Superior - North House Folk School

Sunday morning featured a conversation with Mark Hanson and Tom Healy reflecting on the early years of North House hosted by founding board member Tim Cochrane. When Mark was asked how the school came together, he responded with “It was remarkable what we did with so little in those early days, but when we needed it, the community really came through. We might not have made it through that first winter without the support of Grand Portage and other partners in Cook County.” The talk was followed by a rousing rendition of Happy Birthday and cake from Crosby Bakery to celebrate with everyone in attendance. 


The Family Dance and Contra dance were welcomed back to North House with enthusiasm and excitement by dancers of all ages - North House Folk School

“We have come a long way over the years,” reflected Wright, “and it’s been made possible by the work of so many hands - from local businesses and community groups, to thousands of volunteer hours, and the generosity of many more. It truly takes a community to host a community event.”


Boreal Ship Spotter - larger view here