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Happy July!
We had a busy past month of making baskets, chairs, dresses, root beer, music, tent stakes, wooden spoons, jewelry, rock pigments, and more. We learned about making our arts practices more eco-friendly; we hosted Ely City Council Members for a discussion regarding housing in Ely; we gathered together to paddle our birch bark canoes; and this week in particular, we have been eating juneberries by the handful.  We also kicked off our second annual Kids Makers Morning (KMM) program, in collaboration with Ely Community Resource. KMM forges community and connection to place through craft and to offer opportunities to foster creative spirit through exploring new hands-on skills, materials, and hobbies. And boy, have we been! We’ve made beeswax luminaries, paper lanterns, seed paper, and more.  Just as many exciting learning experiences are coming up this month. Keep reading to find ways to participate.

You can also always stop by EFS to visit and find out more about what’s going on at the top of the hill on Sheridan Street by talking to any of our staff, including our newest staff member, Brett Ross. 

Lucy Soderstrom, Program Director  

View full list of classes online.


KMM seeking donations for:

  • ZUPs gift card
  • Plastic sorting bins of various sizes
  • Ice cub tray molds of various shapes
  • Balloons
  • 5 gallon buckets
  • Dish towels
  • Cotton hand towels

Class Spotlight:

Taste of Blacksmithing 

*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. 

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.


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.

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.