To close out October’s Stone Trust workshops, the Stone Trust Central Valley in Barre, VT hosted a 5-Day Contractor’s Intensive. Five participants joined from all over the country to learn the fundamentals of dry stone walling and achieve their Level 1 Certification.
Instructor Alex Hoffmeier says, “With such varied backgrounds, experiences, and future professional goals, it made for a great dynamic that added a lot of value to the conversations throughout the week. Because the participants were coming from such different regions of the US and North America (British Columbia, Utah, Colorado, Texas and Virginia) it was interesting to hear the type of stonework happening (or not) in each of those areas. A few folks said, “There is no one doing this type of work where I’m from.” It is inspiring to think that they will be able to build off of the skills and knowledge gained in the workshop to distinguish themselves from other masons in their area with a specialty craft such as dry stone walling.”
After a week of hard work and practice, all five participants passed their Level 1 Certification tests. As Alex mentioned, this certification will help them stand out amongst any hardscape or landscape peers that may not have this experience.
The Level 2 Certification test is recognized as the professional standard in the walling world, but can be a trickier goal to accomplish. One Level 2 candidate joined test day, but unfortunately did not pass this time around. Without a doubt, the waller went home understanding the test and knowing what he needs to focus on next time. A newly certified Level 1 Waller also mentioned wanting to come back for the Level 2 test next year. We hope to see you at a Cheek Rebuild Workshop or even a Cheek End Intensive to help you prepare. Additionally, for anyone attempting the Level 2 test, you may find “Leaping the Level 2 Hurdle” helpful.
Thank you to instructor and co-site champion Alex Hoffmeier for taking the time to prepare and teach this intensive workshop. Participants said you are the “perfect person to teach this course.” A big thank you also to co-site champion Jordan Keyes for being so helpful in making sure the site was ready for the workshop and test day.