Mark your calendar for May 27th– Saturday of Memorial Day weekend – for the spring flax processing day! That is the day we assemble along the Amnicon River and turn our flax straw into gold – golden fiber, that is, ready to be spun into linen thread! We’ll be braking, scrutching, and hackling beginning at 10 AM, and work until we’re worn out or our flax is all processed – probably at least 3 PM.
We will have lots of flax straw to process, but if you have some retted flax, bring it and we’ll put that at the head of the queue! If you have unretted flax, this will be a great chance to talk to people and get ideas on how to ret your flax. And if you want to try your hand at growing flax, we’ll have seeds (and instructions) available. Flax is a wonderfully easy plant to grow, and it is absolutely gorgeous when in bloom – it looks like a piece of the sky has fallen to earth!
Everyone is welcome: flax afficionados, hacklers and hecklers, and those who know nothing about flax except that the seeds give you the runs! It’s a great opportunity to learn how something like looks like plain old straw can yield one of the oldest, most useful, and truly beautiful fibers in the world. It’s also a chance to get out into the country, along the Amnion River in an area filled with spring wildflowers.
The event will be held at Louise Young’s house, 2915 S. Merila Rd., South Range, WI. To get there, take highway 53 south out of Superior, then take the first exit – Wisconsin 13 — toward Port Wing and Bayfield. When you get to the Davidson Windmill (about 4 miles from highway 53), you’ll drop down to cross the Amnicon River. Immediately after the bridge, turn left onto Merila Road, a dirt road. Follow this for about a third of a mile, then there will be another left – Pukema Road. Turn here and go past a workshop, a big gray house, and, at the end of the road, a large, half log sided garage and a smaller house. Park on the lawn.
The event will be held rain or shine – in case of bad weather, we can open the port doors of the garage and work inside. Contact phone number is 715-392-1755, however, be aware that there is very limited cell phone coverage at the site (and in fact all along the Amnicon). If you like, bring a beverage and lunch – we’ll also have some munchies to keep up the strength and spirits of workers!
We always have a great time at these – there’s nothing like learning and working outside on a beautiful spring day surrounded by friends!