Norsk Hostfest-goers can try their hand at woodworking this Friday at the North House Folk School booth in Copenhagen Hall.
At 2 p.m., the staff at the booth will run a $5 class on some of the basics of working with birch wood.
"We are planning on doing birch bark beads, rings and stars," said intern Ian Barrett.
Ian Barrett, an intern with North House Folk School in Grand Marais, Minn., weaves birch bark into a star shape during the Norsk Høstfest on Wednesday.
People can take a class on Friday to learn how to weave birch bark stars, beads and rings at the North House Folk School booth in Copenhagen Hall.
Barrett said there is room for 15 people in the class. It is best suited for people ages 10 and up, said Barrett.
"Ten is a good age," said Barrett, who said people should sign up in person at the booth.
He just learned how to make the stars himself this week.
"You take four individual strands (of birch) and then you weave it into a pattern and you have a star," said Barrett.
The birch star can be attached to a string and hung from a Christmas tree.
Barrett, who grew up in St. Paul, was hired as an intern in February at the folk school in Grand Marais, Minn. Barrett said the folk school hired him to staff the 50-foot sailboat, but he has also had a chance to take other craft classes at the folk school and to learn some new skills, like making the birch bark stars.
"It's been a blast," he said.
The North House Folk School has been a presence at the Hostfest for a number of years. Some years they have brought along a birch bark boat, but Barrett said they didn't have room to bring the boat this year. The booth is set up in Copenhagen Hall where there are a number of resident artists and craftsman at this year's Hostfest.
The North House Folk School offers courses throughout the year in many different arts and crafts. People can sign up for a half day course all the way up to a 15-day course, said Barrett, who said people come from all over to take the classes and enjoy a vacation in Grand Marais.
"We have 36 states so far this year," said Barrett, who said Wisconsin also has a folk school but he thinks the North House Folk School is nicer.
Throughout the year people can sign up for classes in areas such as making baskets, nalbinding mittens, blacksmithing, building a boat, sewing their own traditional anorak, knife making, or rosemaling, among other crafts.
"It's really a lot of fun," said Barrett.