By Charlie Shackleton
Special To The Standard
Want a once-in-a-lifetime experience? Here’s your opportunity to be served an outstanding meal seated at one of 18 tables, handmade from local sugar maple and set up community style on the covered bridge right in the heart of Woodstock, all to the accompaniment of a wandering bagpiper. Can you imagine anything more memorable or unique? So mark your calendars for Sunday August 20th at 1pm.
But more on that later. Let me first tell you about how the Naked Table Project came into being. I love making things, I love the environment, and I love bringing people together. A few years ago, at Sustainable Woodstock’s inaugural community event, these three passions converged in my mind, and gave birth to the idea of giving people the opportunity to create their own handmade family heirloom.
To ensure that Naked Table makers experience a personal environmental connection with what I call the “chain of custody,” we will take them all to the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Park where the sugar maple is sustainably harvested. We’ll also spend time with the saw-millers and craftsmen who cut and shape those logs into table components for assembly. We want to ensure that the table-making process is a rich, enjoyable, and meaningful experience.
All of this fits with another set of personal convictions. I believe our future individually and collectively lies in thinking globally, and acting locally as a community. This means trading with each other, and using our local, natural and sustainable resources to make the things we need.
But what if these “things” can also speak to our beliefs and philosophy? What if they can tell a story about what is and was important to us, our children and our grandchildren? Being able to sit around a handmade table and tell those stories and share those beliefs can convert an ordinary table into an iconic, artistic educational tool.
So come and join us in an event that has quickly become a local tradition. If you would like to build a sugar maple Naked Table ($850), there are just three Naked Table making spots still available for Saturday, August 19.
But if you can’t, everyone is welcome at the sensational locavore lunch prepared by the Woodstock Farmer’s Market, and served on Woodstock’s Middle Covered Bridge at 1pm on Sunday August 20. It’s a fundraiser for Sustainable Woodstock, and tickets are $35 each. But hurry – once-in-a-lifetime experiences sell out fast. Call 672-5175 to reserve yours.
This article first appeared in the August 11th print edition of the Vermont Standard.