The Timber Framers Guild is committed to connecting with communities and people, sharing the story of timber framing, and learning and teaching through doing.
To that end, we work with localities, non-profit organizations, and coalitions of organizations to build beautiful timber frame structures that will benefit and strengthen the people and places where we work and live - as well as those far from our own homes. These structures enrich not only the lives of the people we serve - offering new gathering places in the form of farmers' market pavilions, amphitheaters, bridges, and community centers - the structures also enrich the lives of our members as we build skills and knowledge, meet new people, and rally behind a worthy project, working together to bring it to life.
Since 1985, the Timber Framers Guild has raised over 100 timber frames for communities across North America and beyond. Most structures are for public or non-profit entities, such as towns, county park agencies, federal agencies (USFS), land-trusts, or community organizations. Most projects fall into one of five categories: 1 projects to support local agriculture, 2 projects for recreation including bridges and pavilions, 3 projects associated with worship and contemplation, 4 projects for educational institutions and non-profit programs, and 5 historic preservation and restoration.
Community Builds are collaborative efforts involving the Guild, the client (town, non-profit, etc), other entities in the local area (such as donors or sponsors), and passionate people. Projects may take 4-9 months from initiation to execution, with the consturction and "barn-raising" being a 4-6 day affair involving 20-50 people, including members of the Guild and an array of interested locals.
If you are interested in hosting a Community Building Workshop which leads to a timber-framed structure that will be used by members of your community for the next 100 years, please contact Eric Howard, Executive Director of the Guild: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Gateway Visitors' Center in Schuylerville, New York, was completed in partnership with the Historic Hudson-Hoosic Partnership. Culminating with a raising and celebration in June 2017, the project expanded the skills of timber framers from across North America, who traveled to the region to learn from a team of instructors led by Neil Godden, who is now educational director at the Heartwood School.
You can also check out our blog from the Champlain Canal Region Gateway Visitors' Center in 2016.