Well a new year has come. We are off to a good start, had our fi rst Hammer In. We had a very good turn out with over 125 members though the door. As I sit here writing, I realize that this next week will be the second open forge. I am hoping for a lot of participation from the membership. Over the next year we are going to get a lot of people in the fi re. Come on down and hammer a bit, catch up with old friends and make some new friends.
I would like to thank the past Board members for their service, Bob Thomas and Harold Heia, thanks guys. I would also like to welcome our new board members Kelly Stearns and Jay McGowan. Bonnie Kline was elected, but declined the position due to schedule and travel plans that were not known to her at time of her nomination. Dean Mook and I were reelected.
I would like to mention everyone who has worked diligently on getting the 501(C)3 status. This has started to bear fruit. We received our fi rst grant! More on this later… Dean Mook and I will be your Spring Conference hosts. April will be here before we know it, so make your plans now to attend. We have Alec Steele coming over from England. Alec was part of the young smiths at the ABANA conference last summer in South Dakota. It was impressive to see such a young capable smith. I am looking forward to seeing him forge at our event. I hear this young man can really swing a hammer!
On the same note, our local guy will be Berkley Tack, who is a very accomplished smith. He is from Rainier Oregon, just across the river from Longview. Both demonstrators will be working by hand with strikers. This should be very impressive for all of us to see. For people just getting started, they will demonstrate what can be done with just a hammer and an anvil. I am looking forward to seeing both of these smiths work. Date of event April 26, 27, and 28 at Cowlitz Expo Center Longview, WA.
Also in the mix, is a good line up of hands-on demonstrators. Please bring any of your latest work for the gallery. The membership would like to see your work. Don’t forget to bring an auction item. This is how we fund this operation. If your auction item goes for over $250.00 you will receive a one year membership for free.
It’s not too early to start thinking about Western States. This is an event that should not be missed it will be a conference on steroids! There will be smiths from all over the country here, knife-makers and farriers. This will be a national level show along the lines of ABANA right here in our back yard. Ask anyone who attended the last one. Come check it out at Government Camp, Mt. Hood, Oregon, August 22, 23, 24 and 25.
Now for a change. THIS IS BIG! We have been looking at our insurance coverage and it has come to light that if alcohol is involved in any accident, we have no coverage. Also, the Longview grounds have a “NO ALCOHOL POLICY.” We have to follow the same rules. One accident could be the end of the NWBA. This group is about the promotion of blacksmithing, not drinking. This is the responsible path to take. At the banquet dinner, you can drink, only if you buy your drinks at the bar. The caterer has a liquor license and insurance for that. You cannot bring in your own bottle. This is how it must now be. We can work through this.
Well that about wraps it up. If you have any questions please give me a call 360-710-2248. This is the best way to reach of me. I do not look at email often. Bill Apple