A Year in Review
How has the year 2022 already come and gone? Upon reflection, it somehow feels like the longest year that so quickly flew by. Much has happened, both in our collective world and in my personal circle. The Ely Folk School has been a major part of my year and it would be remiss of me not to spend some time reflecting on some of those memories.

Please read my full post detailing the years events here, on our website. How was all of this possible in one year? Increased staff hours. Increased board member participation. And continued community support and buy-in. It takes a village! The Ely Folk School made an investment into staffing hours this year and it has paid off. Ozzie Reif, Sarah Paro, and Steve Klar have joined the Ely Folk School board and have contributed a lot to the success of this year. Undoubtedly the greatest contributing factor to the success of this year was Lucy Soderstorm being promoted to full-time, as the Program Director. Lucy is the driving force behind the new events and wears all of the hats in order to keep the school running smoothly.If you would like to become more involved with EFS or have any questions about the Ely Folk School, our mission, and our operations, please reach out.Happy New Year!

Alexia Springer, Program Coordinator 

View full list of classes online.

We are so grateful and proud of everyone involved in the Bois Forte Native Names Map project and what we have accomplished. This is the first published map featuring Anishinaabe place names in Minnesota. We are hoping (and already seeing!) that this effort can spur other efforts throughout the region to shine a light on lost traditional names and meanings. It is inspirational to think that our efforts at the Ely Folk School can galvanize other important work and reflection on some of the amazing history and culture in this special place. Our hopes for next steps include creating an interactive website with pronunciation of each place name and that our work with Bois Forte could spur an Arrowhead-wide map with input from Anishinaabe bands across the greater Quetico-Superior region. 

Thursday Makers Mornings
9:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Join other makers and crafters weekly at the Ely Folk School for a relaxed morning of creativity and sharing. Whether you crochet, quilt, solder, write, or weave, any project is welcome. This space is also excellent for students who did not finish a project during their class.

 Drop in whenever as you like, for as long as you like. 

Class Spotlight

Taste of Blacksmithing

This class will give you a taste of what it’s like to work with metal and heat with the objective of creating a classic ‘S’ hook using basic blacksmithing techniques. Students will learn the proper color (temperature) to start forging, basic hammering techniques for elongating, bending and twisting metal and go home with a functional ‘S’ hook. Basic forge safety and management will be discussed.

You can choose to take one 2-hour session, or multiple! A discount will be given to those who wish to take 4 hours of class instead of 2.

Scandinavian Loom Beading: Live Online

Fridays, March 10 – 31, 2023
2:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Tuition: $100  Materials: $70  Shipping: $12

Explore the beauty and fun of beading on a loom in the Scandinavian tradition!  Inspired by designs from Nordic bandweaving, this class will take you from start to finish for making your own sparkly beaded bookmark.  Learn about the historic use of loom beading and how a remarkably simple process can transform seed beads into delightful designs.  The class kit includes a handmade loom designed by the instructor and enough beads, silk thread, needles, and patterns to make two projects, if you wish.

We invite you to become a Friend of Ely Folk School through your donation. Thank you so much for helping us accomplish our mission of building community by providing learning experiences that celebrate the wilderness heritage, art, history, culture, and craft of the people of northern Minnesota.
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The Ely Folk School is made possible by: Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, Donald G. Gardner Humanities Trust, Lake Country Power, Minnesota State Arts Board, Clean Water Land & Legacy Amendment, and Rotary International.