At one point, we were all new to the Seattle Woodturners club and each of us attended our first meeting. Guests and prospective members are always welcome to attend one of our monthly meetings! In fact, it’s a great way to get to know us and learn more about our club and activities. Don’t hesitate to contact us with your questions, too!
[Featured: guest demonstrator, Lynne Hull] Here are answers to some of the typical questions you might have before attending your own first meeting.
When and where do you meet?
We meet on the second Thursday of each month from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM, at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) facility located in Redmond, WA. Social time begins at 6:00 PM, and the meeting promptly begins at 6:30 PM. A calendar of meetings is found in this month’s newsletter or event calendar.
Can I attend a meeting even if I am not a member?
Guests and prospective members are always welcome to attend a club meeting! In fact, it’s a great way to get to know us and learn about our activities. New members and guests are formally welcomed at the start of the meeting. They are also invited to take a free piece of wood from the Wood Raffle table!
What about parking?
Free parking is available. Please note that the VFW asks that we not use the first twenty or so parking spaces when entering the parking lot from 150th Avenue. Try to park in the remaining parking spaces, towards the back of the parking lot.
I really liked your meeting. How do I join your club?
Our Treasurer is always available to accept your application and membership dues (cash or check) at meetings. Membership dues go to support our club activities. You’ll be provided with a membership card and welcome packet to help get you oriented with the club. You can also join our club electronically by paying dues via PayPal or Debit/Credit card. Feel free to contact us with your questions, too!
What is your meeting format?
Social time is 6:00 PM to 6:30 PM, and the meeting follows 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM. Meeting format is usually arranged as follows:
- Announcements, introductions, welcome new members and guests
- Show and Tell
- Woodturning Demonstration (Part I)
- Wood Raffle (and refreshment break)
- Woodturning Demonstration (Part II)
What is Show and Tell like?
All members are encouraged to share their newly-turned pieces with the club. It’s an opportunity to both showcase your work, and receive feedback from others. The President awards gift certificates to the most original and/or creative pieces, as well as those submitting their work to Show and Tell the very first time. All pieces are photographed by our club photographer and subsequently published in our newsletter and/or on the website. [Featured: members, Tim Tibbetts, Jack Wayne]
How does the Wood Raffle work?
Each month our members donate a variety of wood pieces, which often make for excellent turning projects. Members optionally purchase single raffle tickets for $1.00/each, or six raffle tickets for $5.00. All proceeds go to support our club activities.
Tickets are sold prior to the start of the meeting and up to the start of Wood Raffle. The Wood Raffle is conducted during the break, with lucky members walking away with one (or more) pieces of wood!
What are you demonstrations like?
Our Program Director recruits, schedules, and organizes the club’s guest demonstrators. The guest demonstrates a woodturning technique of general interest to the group using the club’s lathes and tools. [Featured: guest demonstrators Lynne Hull, Glenn Lucas]
Our audio-visual (A/V) equipment is used to project the sound quality of the demonstrator’s narrative, and live video is projected to two screens in the front of the hall to enhance the audience’s view. In general, demonstrations include plenty of opportunities for questions and answers. A sample of past demonstrators includes club members, regional woodturners, and both nationally and internationally-known woodturners: Steven Hatcher, Eric Lofstrom, Glenn Lucas, David Lutrick, Jon Magill, John Moe, Jay Shepard, John Shrader, Vern Tator, and Derek Weidman.
What equipment do your demonstrators use?
A club trailer is used to transport the club’s equipment to the VFW facility. The Program Director coordinates use of the club’s lathes, grinders, lighting, A/V, and miscellaneous equipment to support all demonstrations. Demonstrators will typically bring one or more of their own tools, supplies, and a portfolio of slides/pictures.
Do sell any woodturning materials at your meetings?
Wood sealer is sold by the Treasurer to members for $20.00/gallon. All proceeds go to support our club activities. Membership in the club includes discounts available at supporting vendors.
Are refreshments available?
Optional donations are accepted for refreshments, where all proceeds go to support our club activities. Refreshments include coffee, sodas, bottled water, and a cookie/treats assortment.
Do you wear name tags?
We do! We find it’s a great way to get to know each other. When you enter the room, you’ll see the name tag table on your left with printed tags available for members.
Honestly, isn’t woodturning just for old guys?
Actually, we have members of all ages in our club. Several of our members have been woodturning since their youth and have a wealth of experience to share.
Turning wood is a complicated, exciting and rewarding process. Imagine the process of taking a natural material, and shaping it into object of beauty and purpose. It can be profoundly challenging and deeply satisfying, with endless ways to explore and grow your expertise. And while woodturning can sometimes be solitary, it offers just as many opportunities for socializing and friendship, too.
Is there any access for disabled members?
Disabled parking is available, and the VFW hall should be able to comfortably accommodate you. Plan to sit near the front of the room if you require an additional audio, visual, or seating accommodation for the meeting.