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CHECK IT OUT: URBANWOODNETWORK.ORG IS UP & RUNNING!

The big news in this month’s Illinois Urban Wood Update is that UrbanWoodNetwork.org is live and serving as a beacon to urge all who visit – municipal mangers, arborists, sawyers, lumber sellers, woodworkers, designers and more – to “Join the Movement.”

Urban Wood Network’s mission manifold: “to inform, collaborate, and connect to build business and consumer confidence in the urban wood industry. Whether you are looking to expand your existing model or want to start a new business dedicated to urban wood, click here to see how we can help you be successful.”

The website’s launch represents a collaboration of the wood utilization teams of the four states participating in the Bringing the Urban Forest Full Circle project funded by the U.S. Forest Service: Illinois, Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin.

This is only phase one. Websites are created to change with the times. The Urban Wood Network welcomes and encourages your feedback to make the site more valuable and relevant.

Also featured in the July Update is a pair of worth-a-look videos:
First, watch how Tom Hogard, a.k.a. Tom The Sawyer found a solution to milling a 5,000-pound burr oak log that was way too big for his portable sawmill to handle.

Then, watch and listen to the urban wood “elevator pitch” succinctly uttered by Sean O’Brien, owner of Pacific Coast Lumber.

Finally, kudos to our brethren in Virginia for organizing the Mid-Atlantic Urban Wood Conference set for Aug. 15-16 in Richmond, VA. It’s great to see so many exciting urban wood activities springing up all over the nation.

Until next time, don’t forget to share your urban wood news!

Enjoy the issue.

Rich Christianson
Communications Director
Illinois Wood Utilization Team

READ THE JULY ILLINOIS URBAN WOOD UPDATE



Save the Date: 2016 Urban Wood Conference & Networking Event

McDonald's-CampusThe unique opportunities and benefits of developing and sustaining an urban wood marketplace will be thoroughly explored at “Bringing the Urban Forest Full Circle,” a conference and table top exhibition scheduled for Friday, March 18, 2016 at Hamburger University in Oak Brook, IL.

The event is being organized by the Illinois Wood Utilization Team (WUT), a broad-based group dedicated to promoting the harvest and best use of wood cultivated from urban and community trees. WUT members include representatives of state and municipal government agencies, arborists, land managers, sawyers, lumber distributors, architects, designers, woodworkers, green builders and academia.

The Bringing the Urban Forest Full Circle Conference will provide a vital forum for all urban forestry stakeholders to address the steps needed to create and sustain a viable value-added market for lumber salvaged from trees removed or harvested from urban forests which includes trees on private and public lands in and around cities of all sizes. Urban trees capable of being processed into quality lumber include those infested by the emerald ash borer, damaged by storms, removed by public utilities and other life-ending causes.

The conference will focus on industry best practices for urban tree removal and milling through wood product manufacturing and marketing.

Hamburger University, situated on McDonald’s heavily wooded, 80-acre corporate campus near several major expressways, is an ideal location for the Bringing the Urban Forest Full Circle Conference. McDonald’s has a long history of environmental stewardship of its campus forest and in recent years has lost hundreds of trees to the emerald ash borer.

The emerald ash borer is considered the most destructive pest to ever invade North American forests. The exotic beetle is blamed for killing tens of millions of trees in more than 20 states and several Canadian provinces. Up to now, the vast majority of these terminally infested trees upon removal have been expeditiously chipped or ground into mulch. Fact is the majority of these ash trees contain perfectly usable wood that can readily be turned into lumber for making furniture, cabinets, flooring and other secondary wood products. The end game of the Bringing the Urban Forest Full Circle Conference is to rally all stakeholders to take action and give these dying urban forest trees a second life as functional and decorative furnishings and objects.

“Reclaiming valuable wood products from felled tree landscape trees is just a smart idea,” said Edith Makra, chairman of the Illinois Wood Utilization Team. “There are so many stakeholders – from arborists who must fell trees and industries who make wood products to consumers who find the story of urban compelling. The aim of our conference is to link these key players in the supply chain to spark an innovative, sustainable urban wood products industry in our region.”

Additional information about the Bringing the Urban Forest Full Circle Conference, including registration, sponsorship and display table details, will be posted at IllinoisUrbanWood.org as they become available.

To learn more about attending, sponsoring or exhibiting at the conference, contact Rich Christianson, conference director, at richsonmediapro@gmail.com, 773-822-6750.

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About the Illinois Wood Utilization Team
Founded in 2007, the Illinois Wood Utilization Team is a network of land managers, professionals in the wood products industry, natural resource and green building experts and artisans dedicated to promoting and developing a sustainable market place for achieving the best possible use of trees felled in the urban forest. The Illinois WUT is part of a four-state grant project funded through the USDA Forest Service Northeastern Area. Other grant partners include the Southeast Michigan Resource Conservation and the Southeast Michigan Resource Conservation and Development Council and Recycle Ann Arbor; the Missouri Department of Conservation; and the Sustainable Resources Institute Inc. and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

 



Wisconsin Urban Forest Fest Set for Sept. 15

 

Wisconsin Urban Wood (WUW), in partnership with the USDA Forest Service and the Lynden Sculpture Garden, will present the 2018 Urban Forest Fest 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, September 15 at the Lynden Sculpture Garden in Milwaukee. The event is sponsored by the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC). Urban Forest Fest is an event to connect the public to the urban forest and its products.

Many people forget that wood comes from trees; Urban Forest Fest will make the connection between neighborhood trees and the wood products people use on a daily basis by telling the tree-to-table story.

Planned activities and exhibits include the Wisconsin Arborist Association Kids’ Climb, a sawmill demonstration, WUW members’ wood products and services, WEDC and the USDA Forest Service, along with music and food.

More than 500 people attended the 2016 Urban Forest Fest. View invitation to exhibit at the Fest.

The Lynden Sculpture Garden is located at 2146 W. Brown Deer Road, Milwaukee.

Save the Date: Urban Wood Symposium
Wisconsin Urban Wood also is in the planning stages of an Urban Wood Symposium geared for architects and designers, as well as municipal professionals including city foresters, park directors, public works managers, etc. The one-day program will feature a key-note address by Jessica Simons, representative of the Michigan Urban Wood Network and Michigan state lead for the Urban Wood Network. The event is tentatively planned for Thursday, Nov. 8 in the Madison or Milwaukee area.



Q&A with Erika Horigan of Horigan Urban Forest Products

Horigan Urban Wood ProductsHorigan Urban Forest Products of Skokie, IL, has been blazing trails in the utilization of urban wood for 15 years. In recent years the Horigans moved into larger quarters that includes a sawmill, warehouse and retail operation.

Erika Horigan, who co-owns the company with her husband, Bruce, discusses how Horigan UFP got started and her enjoyment in seeing felled community trees get a second chance as lumber and wood products.

“We first thought of the idea of milling urban logs in the late ‘70s. My husband Bruce, who is a certified arborist, was working in the tree care industry. He could hardly believe how many good milling logs were going into the landfill.”

Read about the company’s success on UrbanWoodNetwork.org.



Woodworking Industry Takes Notice of Urban Wood Movement

The urban wood movement will take to the main stage of the North American woodworking industry’s most important event – the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta. The free 90-minute seminar, “The Urban Wood Revolution Is NOW! Come Join the Movement,” set for Friday, August 24 is garnering strong support from a diverse segment of companies exhibiting at the show.

Wood-Mizer, lead sponsor of the seminar, has been joined by three other sponsors: Richelieu Hardware, Dynabrade and Safety Speed Manufacturing. Each of these companies sees utilizing felled and fallen urban trees to their highest possible value in tune with their own sustainability missions.

It is extremely gratifying to see more wood industry companies support the efforts of the Urban Wood Network, organizer of the event, as well as peer groups in the Southeast and West Coast which will be represented in the seminar. IWF represents a great opportunity to educate more professional woodworking companies about the potential of this vastly under-utilized yet very valuable resource.

Read more about the IWF Urban Wood Seminar Sponsors and the products that they will display in this month’s Illinois Urban Wood Update.

Speaking of IWF Urban Wood Seminar presenters, check out the video featuring Jennifer Alger. Jennifer, CEO of Far West Forest Products in Sheridan, CA, is the force behind the new Urban Salvaged & Reclaimed Woods Network. She will be joined by Dwayne Sperber of Wudeward Urban Forest Products, who will represent the Urban Wood Network on the panel. Yours truly will moderate the presentation.

Also, speaking of IWF Urban Wood Seminar sponsors, read about Wood-Mizer’s recent acquisition of the Swedish company MOReTENs. As a result of the purchase, Wood-Mizer, already renowned for its portable and stationary sawmills, now offers more value-added capability with machines including planers/moulders, table saws and even CNC routers.

Finally, if you are interested in connecting with urban wood proactivists around the globe, then become a member of the Urban Wood Network LinkedIn group that now numbers more than 1,750 strong.

As always, send me your urban wood stories, photos and experiences.

I hope you enjoy this edition.

Rich Christianson

Communications Director
Illinois Wood Utilization Team
info@illinoisurbanwood.org

READ THE JUNE 2018 ILLINOIS URBAN WOOD UPDATE



ADDING VALUE TO URBAN TREES: TWO UPCOMING WORKSHOPS AT MSU

What can we do with urban trees after they need to be removed?  Two upcoming workshops help answer that question. The workshops are being held to promote the launch of the Michigan Urban Wood Network, a new group focused on finding the highest and best use for trees removed from Michigan’s community landscapes.

Each event will begin with overview presentations by area experts and will follow with hands-on field demonstrations. Pre-registration is required. Cost is $35 for each workshop and includes full lunch. Please notify the planning team of any special dietary needs after registration.

 

View Workshop Agenda: Adding Value to Urban Wood: Small Batch Kiln Drying Workshop

REGISTER NOW

WHEN:    Monday, July 9, 2018 – 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
WHO:      Sawmill owners, woodworkers, and other wood industry members
WHERE: Michigan State University Department of Forestry, 480 Wilson Road, Room #338, East Lansing

 

View Workshop Agenda: Actionable Strategies for Managing Wood from Urban & Community Trees

REGISTER NOW

WHEN:     Tuesday, July 10, 2018 – 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
WHO:       Arborists, community foresters, and other land managers
WHERE:  MSU Department of Forestry, 480 Wilson Road, Room #216. East Lansing

Qualify to win a free workshop registration! Please help us understand your organization’s needs better by completing one of our surveys: Sawmill Survey or Municipal & Tree Care Industry Survey.



IWF Urban Wood Seminar Gains Diverse Sponsorship Support

Seminar focused on repurposing felled community trees receives solid sponsorship push from Wood-Mizer, Richelieu, Dynabrade and Safety Speed Manufacturing.

 

An intriguing mix of companies exhibiting at the International Woodworking Fair (IWF) have signed on as sponsors of “The Urban Wood Movement Is NOW! Come Join the Movement.” The free 90-minute seminar is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. Friday, August 24 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.

The diverse cast of urban wood seminar sponsors includes Wood-Mizer, Richelieu, Dynabrade and Safety Speed Manufacturing.

“It is extremely gratifying to see these four major companies throw their support behind the concept of utilizing community and landscape trees at the end of their service as lumber and wood products when possible,” said Rich Christianson, a representative of the Urban Wood Network, organizer of the event. “We’re excited to educate woodworkers about the benefits of networking with local tree care professionals and sawyers to use locally reclaimed lumber in their custom projects.”

Featured presenters will include Dwayne Sperber, owner of Wudeward Urban Forest Products of Milwaukee, WI; Jennifer Alger, CEO of Far West Forest Products of Sheridan, CA; and Joe Lehnen, a representative of the Virginia Urban Wood Group. Each of the presentations will shighlight opportunities to repurpose urban wood otherwise destined for the chipper or landfill to make high-quality lumber, slabs, furniture, flooring and other wood products.

About the Sponsors
Wood-Mizer of Indianapolis, IN, (booth 6575) is the lead sponsor of the IWF urban wood seminar. As a world-wide leader in the manufacture of narrowband portable and industrial sawmills, Wood-Mizer has long been a strong advocate of repurposing trees felled in the urban wood as lumber and wood products. The company’s diverse product offering also includes wideband sawmilling equipment, resaws, kilns, moulders/planers, pallet recycling equipment, and bandsaw blades.

“With Wood-Mizer’s thin-kerf blade technology, diseased and dying city trees can find new life in a piece of furniture that could have otherwise gone to waste,” said Darryl Floyd, COO of Wood-Mizer. “Throughout the past decade, Wood-Mizer has seen a major influx of successful businesses who are utilizing urban sourced wood for their sawmilling operations and we are proud to manufacture a product that enables small businesses to be profitable with an underutilized resource. While Wood-Mizer has been educating woodworkers about the positive environmental and economic impact of urban wood for years, the Urban Wood Seminar at IWF 2018 will be another step forward in saving more trees from going into the waste stream.”

Among the products Wood-Mizer will exhibit at IWF is the LT40 Hydraulic Wide portable sawmill. This industry workhorse for producing quality lumber fast and easily features a 34-inch width of cut and 21-foot log length capacity. Wood-Mizer will also show the MP260 and MP360 four-sided planers/moulders. These single-pass machines can be used to manufacture flooring, planed boards, crown moulding, cabinet trim, door and window frames and furniture components. 

Richelieu of Saint Laurent, QC, (booth 1604) is one of the largest distributors and manufacturers of specialty hardware and complementary products in North America. Richelieu operates more than 50 distribution centers to service over 80,000 customers engaged in the manufacture of kitchen and bath cabinets, closets and storage spaces, and home and office furnishings.

Richelieu will continue the year-long celebration of its 50th anniversary at IWF 2018. The company will display its latest innovations in hardware, fasteners, lighting, storage solutions and more.

Dynabrade of Clarence, NY, (booth 8121) has been designing and manufacturing high-quality portable abrasive power tools in the United States for more than 50 years. Dynabrade also offers dust collection solutions and accessories for its abrasive power tools. “Dynabrade is a company that is going through a “Going Green” program,” said Andy Mandell, marketing manager. “We’re eliminating waste and creating a new recycling program. It’s fantastic to see old wood serving new purposes. and Dynabrade is proud to be a part of it.

Dynabrade will introduce the Dynorbital Extreme Random Orbital Sander line at IWF. It features an ergonomic design with a tactile soft grip over-mold for a comfortable feel. The 12,000 rpm more has an improved rotor design for enhanced power.

Safety Speed Manufacturing of Ham Lake, MN, (booth 6013) is a U.S. manufacturer of high-quality panel processing machinery. Safety Speeds product line includes a full line of vertical panel saws, panel routers, widebelt sanders, edgebanders, screw pocket machines and sign-making equipment. Tom Houska, marketing manager of Safety Speed, said supporting the urban wood movement is an extension of the company’s environmental initiatives. “We are constantly aiming to decrease resource consumption through improved efficiency in our manufacturing processes, eliminate unnecessary resource use and decrease the amount of waste produced through our manufacturing activities.”

At IWF 2018, Safety Speed will demonstrate a manufacturing work cell to more efficiently process panels. The integrated solution includes the 7400 vertical panel saw, Conquest 23-spindle line boring machine, 72GP glue pot edgebander and SPM 301 screw pocket machine, which will make its debut at IWF.

 

Note: While admission to this program is free, advanced registration is required to guarantee a seat. Register at IWFAtlanta.com.

For information about the IWF Urban Wood seminar, contact Rich Christianson at 773-822-6750; richc.illinoisurbanwood@gmail.com.

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About the Urban Wood Network
The Urban Wood Network (UWN) operates from funding provided by the USDA Forest Service Northeastern, State and Private Forestry Landscape Scale Restoration Grant Program. UWN has opened up membership to other state urban wood organizations as well as individual companies and entities. The four state partners include: Illinois Wood Utilization Team; Michigan Urban Wood Network; Missouri Department of Conservation; and Wisconsin Urban Wood.



Wood-Mizer Acquires Swedish Manufacturer of 4-sided Planer/Moulders

Wood-Mizer has expanded its product range to include woodworking equipment with the acquisition of Swedish company, MOReTENs AB. Included are four-sided planer/moulders, table saws, spindle moulders and CNC routers, plus log home building machinery.

“Throughout our history, Wood-Mizer has been committed to providing the best quality equipment to process logs into finished wood products,” said Wood-Mizer President and CEO Richard Vivers. “The affordable and versatile moulder and planer product lines from MOReTENs have been proven worldwide for decades, and are now backed by the high-quality service and support network customers expect from Wood-Mizer.”

The founder and owner of MOReTENs, Bo Mårtensson, has joined Wood-Mizer as the General Director of the factory in Ostersund, Sweden. The factory in Sweden marks Wood-Mizer’s fifth manufacturing plant throughout the world including three facilities in the USA and one in Poland.

Wood-Mizer recently began offering new planers/moulders under the Wood-Mizer name through its distribution network. Read the full press release about the acquisition.

Wood-MIzer is the lead sponsor of the seminar “The Urban Wood Revolution Is NOW! Come Join the Movement,” scheduled for Aug. 24 at the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta.



MAY 18 Update: Researchers Sound the Alarm on Urban Tree Loss

A new study by researchers of the U.S. Forest Service estimates that U.S. urban areas are losing about 36 million trees per year. You can read a summary about the study, with a link to a more in-depth report, in this month’s Illinois Urban Wood Update.

No doubt, I think its fair to say that a good number of these 36 million trees could produce lumber to make things. But I think it’s also fair to say that probably only a very small percentage of the lumber-bearing trees have had a date with a sawmill.

The wasted opportunities to repurpose more of our felled and fallen urban tress points to the need for municipalities to incorporate urban wood utilization in their urban forestry plans. Some do, but far more don’t.

In this regard and on a more encouraging note, you can read how 95 Chicago-area communities recently signed the Greenest Region Compact. The GRC is a guide that cities can use to implement local actions to promote sustainability and create healthy, thriving communities. One of the goals of the GRC is “Harvest and utilize high-value wood products from trees that must be removed.”

Kudos to Edith Makra, director of environmental initiatives at the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus and former chair of the Illinois Wood Utilization Team, who authored the GRC.

Meanwhile, the emerald ash borer has finally found its way into Vermont. It’s amazing that it took this long considering how the EAB has ravished ash trees in surrounding states. As state foresters brace for the deadly beetle’s invasion, they are already considering how they might put some of the tree casualties to use.

Finally, the free urban wood seminar being organized by the Urban Wood Network at the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta, has three new sponsors. Richelieu Hardware, Dynabrade and Safety Speed Manufacturing have joined lead sponsor Wood-Mizer in supporting this special presentation at North America’s largest gathering of professional woodworkers. I’m looking forward to moderating the session, “The Urban Revolution Is NOW! Come Join the Movement,” scheduled for August 24 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.

READ THE MAY 2018 ILLINOIS URBAN WOOD UPDATE

 



Urban Wood Movement Takes Woodworking Industry’s Biggest Stage in Atlanta

Growing demand for urban wood lumber and products is paramount to advancing the urban wood movement and cause.

One way to increase demand for urban wood begins with making woodworkers – particularly custom woodworkers – aware of the potential of using this under-utilized material in their cabinet, furniture and other projects.

The Urban Wood Network (UWN) aims to do just that by presenting a free 90-minute seminar August 24 at the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta. IWF is the woodworking industry’s largest North American event; more than 17,000 professionals attended the show two years ago.

This actually represents an encore performance. More than 130 people registered for the urban wood utilization seminar at IWF 2016.

Representatives of three regional urban wood utilization efforts will present including Dwayne Sperber, representing UWN; Jennifer Alger, representing the West Coast’s new Urban Salvaged & Reclaimed Lumber; and a third speaker to be announced soon representing the Southeast’s urban wood movement. Yours truly will moderate this panel of distinguished and passionate speakers. A big thanks to Wood-Mizer for signing on as the major sponsor of the program.

You can learn more about the IWF urban wood seminar: The Urban Wood Movement Is Now! Come Join the Movement in this edition of the Illinois Urban Wood Update.

Also featured this month:
Watch a video to see how Hunski Hardwoods has established a successful business salvaging and milling felled urban trees in Sacramento, CA. It’s the 4th episode of Wood-Mizer’s Urban Sawmilling series.

Make it a double feature by checking out a video showing how New York state deploys its fleet of 22 drones to get a bird’s-eye view for monitoring the health of its public and urban forests.

In case you missed the Spring Urban Wood Webcast presented by the Wood Education & Resource Center of the Northeast Forest Station, you can now view it on-demand. Included are updates on the Urban Wood Network, Virginia Urban Wood group, urban wood certification efforts and urban wood utilization in Kansas City, MO.

READ APRIL 2018 ILLINOIS URBAN WOOD UPDATE

Don’t forget to share your urban wood stories, photos and experiences.

Until next month, enjoy!

Rich Christianson
Communications Director
Illinois Wood Utilization Team
info@illinoisurbanwood.org