Naturally Rockford: Round Wood sustainable construction workshop

StoryImage( ‘/Images/Story//Auto-img-11206724476043.jpg’, ‘Photo provided’, ‘CSA Learning Center Round Wood & Straw Bale facility.’);

Learn state-of-the art skills in sustainable construction that you could apply to your home building projects. Participants will receive expert instruction in round wood design, framing, and finishing. Architect Roald Gundersen, who specializes in solar, straw bale and round wood buildings, will show us how to build using un-milled round wood poles harvested from forest thinning for columns and beams (for more on Roald’s work, go to

As with unprocessed food that has more health value, wood used in its natural state retains 50 percent more of its strength. Course participants will help to begin and complete a seasonal structure from scratch during the four days. Participants also will observe previously constructed round wood and straw bale structures on the farm (also designed by Roald Gundersen). The finished product is functional, beautiful, and inspiring!

This is a learning-by-doing workshop. Over the four days, you will help construct a 28-foot x 22-foot round wood structure that will cover a proposed outdoor kitchen area. You will also learn about harvesting round wood (including tree selection and peeling bark) and using round wood for posts, branching columns, beams, and rafters.

The proposed outdoor kitchen area is to be used by youth and adults who take part in agro-ecology education programs at the center. The new structure will greatly enhance CDS’s annual capacity to serve more than 3,500 urban youth and adults from the greater Chicago, Rockford and Madison areas who take part in agro-ecology education and farmer training programs. Also, participants will have the chance to tour Angelic Organics, partner to the CSA Learning Center and a vibrant community-supported agriculture farm that grows for more than 1,200 families each season.

To see a few images of the larger structure under construction, go to architect Roald Gundersen’s webpage at:

Fee is $125 for the four days (or $50 per day), of which includes instruction by Roald Gundersen, lots hands-on experience, and learning materials. Lodging is the responsibility of the participant. Camping facilities are available at the farm.

Workshops are held at CSA Learning Center at Angelic Organics (off I-90 just north of Rockford and south of Beloit, Wis.).

The CSA Learning Center is a farm-based nonprofit that empowers people to create sustainable communities.

To register and for more information:

To register, send your name, address, phone, and e-mail with full payment to:

CSA Learning Center at Angelic Organics ,1547 Rockton Road, Caledonia, IL 61011

Space is limited and filled on a first-come basis. Lodging options include local hotels and camping on the farm. Scholarships are available for low-income participants. For workshop questions, contact Angelic Organics at or 815-389-8455.

For more information on the CSA Learning Center and Angelic Organics, contact:, and

For a list of workshops and events, go to:

The CSA Learning Center empowers people to create sustainable communities of soils, plants, animals and people through educational, creative, and experiential programs offered in partnership with Angelic Organics, a vibrant Biodynamic community supported farm.

From the July 6-12, 2005, issue

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