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Peekskill Youth and Professional Training, Stage 1–Stone Shaping (March 14 -16, 2022)

In partnership with Manzer’s Landscape Design and Development and with the generous support of the Peekskill Rotary Club and the Lanza Family Foundation, the Stone Trust begins training for youth and professionals.

Instructor Pete Ryder led stage one of this year’s training, an Introduction to Stone Shaping for Manzer’s Landscape crew members already trained in the five basic rules of dry stone walling. Pete brought his know-how as a professional waller to bear on how to teach to two levels of walling to accomplish a complex build in a public space.

Stage One: Four landscape/hardscape professionals learned to shape granite for throughstones and vertical wall ends, the materials necessary to build the four cheekends needed for the finished pair of walls. The crew also learned how to shape copes from  bluestone. Pete left homework for the crew to complete between now and April 30, when stage two training begins.

Stage two of the Peekskill Professional and Youth Training coincides with the Peekskill Rotary’s 5th Annual Cherry Blossom Festival & Plant Sale. Stone Trust instructors Robert Faraone, Ben Maron, and Ron Neil lead three days of introductory training for youth ages 17 to 25. This crew builds a pair of freestanding dry stone walls. At the same time, the professional crew builds the vertical wall ends that finish each end of the paired walls.

Thanks to Chappy Manzer, principal of Manzer Landscape and Development, for persisting in his vision of providing ongoing training for Peekskill youth in dry stone walling. You are helping to preserve the tradition, further the craft, and prepare Peekskill’s citizenry to earn right livelihoods.

Thanks to the Factoria and the Charles Point Marina for furnishing a site for this dry stone wall.

And thanks to Pete for wrapping his heart and mind around this complex training project to ensure it happens!