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Advanced Photography - Focus on Landscapes


with Ken Hupila

Calendar Jul 28, 2018 at 10 am

Saturday, July 28, 2018
10:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Tuition: $50

Ever wondered how some photographers can get such stunning landscape shots that contain a large dynamic range and superb depth of focus in addition to a gorgeous scene? What elements should you be thinking of when planning for your inspirational images? How does light, time of year as well of time of day factor into your work? All questions answered in this workshop!

We will cover lens selection, compositional techniques, hyperfocus, image stacking, useful apps, use of filters, and long exposure photography. 

Workshop will consist of three hours in the classroom and a two-hour field trip to Kawishiwi Falls. That is about a 1/3 mile hike over a hiking trail that is rocky in portions, so wear appropriate clothing and footwear.

This class is intended for the intermediate level photographer and above.

About the instructor: Ken Hupila says, "I live in northern Minnesota and have been interested in photography since I won a box camera at a carnival when I was six. The last couple of years have finally seen an opportunity when finances and free time have allowed me to begin playing with the interest. I have been taking nature shots and sport photos for awhile and am just beginning to play with studio photography."

Ken's photography classes at the Ely Folk School have been very popular. He also offers Photographing Wild Orchids, Capturing Fall Colors, and Intro to Photoshop.

Adventurous Elyites: Canoeing Conversations


with Sean Bloomfield Colton Witte

Calendar Sep 8, 2018 at 7 pm

September 8, 2018
7:00 PM- 9:00 PM

Tuition: $10

Sean Bloomfield and Colton Witte will speak about their book Adventure North: 2,200 Miles by Canoe, 49 Day in the WildThe book shares the story of their canoeing adventure from Chaska, Minnesota to Hudson Bay. The two boys graduated from high school early to retrace Eric Sevareid’s classic canoe trip detailed in the book Canoeing with the Cree. Bloomfield and Witte will speak about their adventure and how it differed from Sevareid’s experience.

About the Instructors: Sean Bloomfield teaches 8th grade Social Studies, and coaches high school hockey and lacrosse in Chaska, Minnesota. Along with canoeing to Hudson Bay in 2008, he and his paddling partner, Colton Witte, and two others lived off of the land for one month in the Absaroka-Beartooth region of Montana in 2011. He currently lives with his wife and two sons in Minnesota, and

Colton Witte studied international relations, institutional philosophy, and business at Minnesota State University. He continues to backpack, canoe, fish, and hunt with friends and family, and enjoys exploring music and culture with his girlfriend. In his free time, he plays guitar and signs, performing professional in weddings and at social events. Books will be available for purchase and signing.

All Things Chaga


with Allie Austin

Calendar Aug 15, 2018 at 4 pm

Wednesday August 15, 2018
4:00 PM- 6:00 PM

Tuition: $20 Materials $30

Did you know, growing on our birch trees is one of the most powerfully medicinal mushrooms in the world? Chaga has been highly studied and has been known to kill cancer cells, shrink tumors, and increase the body's ability to respond and adapt to stress, among it's multitude of other benefits. In this class, we will learn how to identify, harvest, and utilize this medicinal powerhouse for both internal and external use. We will make some chaga preparations in class, and students will each go home with their own informational chaga handbook, including a recipe booklet with numerous chaga remedies and creative ways to use Minnesota's most treasured fungi.  

About the Instructor: Allison Austin has been practicing herbalism for over 13 years. Her passion for plants and herbal medicine began in middle school, and has continued to play a central role in her life ever since. She has studied under herbalists in Minnesota, California, Texas, and with Mayan elders in Guatemala. Allison is passionate about bringing the traditional practices of herbalism to people in a practical and accessible way, and encouraging people to utilize herbs in their local area to become more self-sustainable and take charge of their own health. 

Birch Bark Baskets 101


with Susanna Pershern

Calendar Aug 29, 2018 at 9 am

Wednesday, August 29, 2018
9:00 AM - 1:00 PM

Tuition: $40   Materials: $5

Learn to make a beautiful, simple birch bark basket using spruce roots, birch bark and saplings gathered from the Northwoods. You will walk away with a beautiful basket to remind you of the richness of the forest. After only a few short hours in the classroom, you will also carry with you the skills to make more baskets. All the materials will be provided.

About the instructor: Susanna Pershern is an artist and underwater photographer for the Submerged Resources Center of the United States National Park Service. Pershern trained in the traditional photographic processes and several alternative photographic processes at Rockport College, Rockport, ME, (now, Maine Media College.)

Susanna has experience as a young artist counselor and has taught previously at the Ely Folk School. She’s looking forward to returning to Ely and we’re very happy to welcome her back!

Birch Bark Canoe Project


with Erik Simula

Calendar May 8, 2018 at 6 pm

Become a member of the Birch Bark Canoe Project! A one-time fee of $30 entitles you to attend and participate in any of the Tuesday and Wednesday night building sessions from 6-9 at the school or any of the foraging classes listed below.

  • 5/15 Cedar Field Harvest 9-1 p.m.
  • 5/16 Cedar Field Harvest 9-1 p.m.
  • 5/30 Spruce Root & Pitch Field Harvest
  • 5/31 Spruce Root & Pitch Field Harvest
  • 6/5 Spruce Root & Pitch Field Harvest
  • 6/6 Spruce Root & Pitch Field Harvest
  • 7/3 Birch Bark Field Harvest 9-1 p.m.
  • 7/5 Birch Bark Field Harvest 9-1 p.m.
  • 8/15 Paddling Birch Bark Canoes 6-8 p.m.

When you register, pay the $30 ONE TIME only.  After that, to register to attend any of the building or foraging classes (listed separately), indicate that you are a BBCP Member so that you do not need to pay again.

Blueberry Jam


with Mary Louise Icenhour

Calendar Jul 27, 2018 at 1 pm

Blueberry Jam: a wonderful way to get your antioxidants!
July 27, 2018

1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Tuition: $30 Materials: $5

Would you like to preserve those wonderful blueberries you've been picking?  Learn how to make your own blueberry jam from start to finish.  You can bring in your own hand-picked berries or take the easy route and bring in purchased berries from the store; you'll need about one pint per jar. 

You will learn all the fundamentals of jam making; preparing the fruit, sterilizing jars, and using a boiling water bath to insure the safety of the preserved food. You will experience the conversion of delicious blueberries into the tastiest jam on the planet.

About the instructor: Mary Louise is an Ely native and retired teacher who loves to share her passion for traditional skills. She also teaches our Slovenian Potica, Apple Strudel, Blueberry Strudel, Pasty and Pine Needle Basketry classes.

Blueberry Strudel


with Mary Louise Icenhour

Calendar Jul 28, 2018 at 1 pm

Saturday, July 28
1:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Tuition: $40, Materials: $5

Celebrate the Blueberry Art/Festival weekend by joining us at Ely Folk School and learn how to mix, knead, and pull genuine strudel dough the old fashioned way! 

Blueberry strudel is an adaption to the classic dessert of Eastern Europe that's savored by many Ely area residents. Sure, store-bought phyllo dough offers a quick short cut, but handcrafted dough results in a delicate & buttery pastry -- the real deal.

After pulling the dough we will fold it with blueberries, sour cream butter and eggs.  Each student will take home a generous piece. Dessert is served!

About the instructor: Mary Louise is an Ely native and retired teacher who loves to share her passion for traditional skills. She teaches our Pine Needle Basketry, Apple Strudel, Walnut Potica, Pasty and Canning classes.

Full Course
Build Your Own Custom Fishing Rod
Registration Unavailable

Build Your Own Custom Fishing Rod


with Kris Kristufek

Calendar Jul 27, 2018 at 5 pm

Build Your Own Custom Fishing Rod
This is a three-day class:
Friday     7/27/18  5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Saturday 7/28/18  8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sunday   7/29/18  9:00 am - 12:00 noon

Tuitition: $180  Materials: $225

Build your first custom fishing rod under the guidance of professional rod builder, Kris Kristufek from LakeLady Custom Rods. You will build a rod up to seven feet long, with choice of action and power, thread color choices, handle choices, and more, using American-made component parts. Then add your own inscription and personal touches.  

This is an intensive course in which all necessary tools and equipment and supplies are furnished.  During three days of classroom instruction, you will learn how to build a fishing rod made from carbon fiber, attached the handle and reel seat, learn guide placement techniques, wrap the guides with fine thread, find the spine, apply epoxy finish and learn basic decorative techniques.

Why settle for big box store rods when you can build a much better rod yourself, custom-made to fit your measurements? 

In order to choose your custom materials which the instructor will order for you, you must register by July 2nd. Registrations will be taken after that date, but selection of materials will be from the choices the instructor brings to class. Students must be 13 years old or older.

About the instructor: Kris Kristufek of Breezy Point, MN, builds award-winning custom fishing rods. He uses only premium blanks and components, creating unique fishing rods for the discriminating angler at LakeLady Custom Fishing Rods. A Certified Professional Rod Builder by the Custom Rod Builders Guild, Inc., he is one of only two such Certified Pros in Minnesota and one of only 36 in the United States. He has build over 2,500 custom fishing rods. Kristufek is becoming known as the "Rod Professor" as he shares his skills, teaching others this interesting craft of custom rod building.




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