Saturday, July 27, 2013
An Unforgettable Field Day at “The Big Woods Farm” with Dave and Bev Medvecky
In the ATFS network of nearly 26 million acres of sustainably managed certified woodlands, the 240 acre “The Big Woods Farm” is one of the nation’s stand-out gems. Dave and Bev Medvecky have fashioned a Tree Farm that provides them with both revenue and an enviable life-style, filled with beauty, friends, family, grandkids and a growing number of like-minded folks who depend on “goods from the woods.” This field trip will give you an insider’s view of the growing “green economy” – and ladle out a heaping serving of one-of-a-kind rural Minnesota hospitality!
In addition to tours of their forest and organic farming operation (Bev grows and sells peas, asparagus, and peonies), the Medvecky’s are assembling an array of woodworkers, vendors and other colleagues from Minnesota’s flourishing artisan timber culture. They sell their wood to a wide variety of customers -- cooks who want cherry wood smoke, woodworking artists, and folks who need lumber for flooring and paneling. Logs with “figured wood,” (what normal mills would call “defects”) are sold to local bowl turners. Some logs are sold to Japan. One customer buys wood to make old-fashioned “berry boxes” for Farmer’s Markets, all made by hand with an old-fashioned machine, as they have been for five generations. They recently received an order for one million boxes.
Dave is filling niche after niche that is emerging in this new timber loving market – and community. He has an uncanny knack for match-making his trees to their final market purpose, be it a specially woodworked object or wood for more generic purposes. The Medveckys manage this forest habitat in ways that sustain its yield, its wildlife, and the sense of “wildness” that still lives there. Timber harvests are done selectively, based on the needs of forest health on a tree-by-tree basis. Hand felling and a small, 1960’s era machine known as “The Mule” enable highly selective harvesting. At Big Woods Farm, the Medveckys like to focus on the culture and traditions grown from Minnesota forests coupled with a small-woods feel. To fully experience and appreciate it, you’ll just have to see it in person.
Come to experience a Minnesota that few others will ever know. The Medveckys and tour friends at STIHL, Inc. and other industry professionals, are creating an event that is alive with the values of the American Tree Farm.