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George Wurtzel

Blind at Work: The Woodworker

Blind at Work: The Woodworker

This weekend marks our very first session back up at camp since fires destroyed a large portion of Enchanted Hills Camp in Napa. Thanks to the hard work of the firefighters up at camp, our Tactile Art Barn survived and continues to be a venue for workshops and camp sessions. From February 1 through 4, we’ll be joined by students and woodworking hopefuls from all over, who will learn from internationally renowned woodworker Jerry Kermode and blind woodworker and construction manager George Wurtzel. George works up at camp year round, and in addition to his woodworking expertise, he has plenty to teach us about a life well-lived:

This session is all booked up, but if you’re interested in taking part in future woodworking or tactile art workshops, please contact EHC Program Coordinator Taccarra Burrell at ehc@lighthouse-sf.org or 451-694-7310.

Woodworking with George Wurtzel Returns in November

Woodworking with George Wurtzel Returns in November

Image: Surrounded by woodworking tools and machinery, George Wurtzel works on a wooden bowl in the DeLong -Sweet Tactile Arts Barn at Enchanted Hills.

Join expert carpenter George Wurtzel at our popular workshop for both beginning and experienced woodworkers.

This class will cover wood turning, hand tool work and an introduction to power tools. We’ll learn how to measure accurately without sight, using click rules, gauge blocks, Vernier calipers and talking tape measures. We’ll talk about wood types and construction techniques and learn when to glue, when to nail and when to use screws. We’ll also touch on finishing techniques.

Who: Adults (ages 21 and older ) who are blind or have low vision and are eager to learn woodworking

Where: Enchanted Hills Camp

When: Thursday, November 10 through Sunday, November 13

Cost: $300.00 plus $40.00 for transportation

Class is limited to six participants, so sign up now.

To sign up for this special workshop, contact Camp Director Tony Fletcher at tfletcher@lighthouse-sf.org or 415-694-7319 for an application or with any questions.

George Wurtzel Profiled in Braille Monitor

George Wurtzel Profiled in Braille Monitor

“Except for those times when I didn’t want to work, I’ve had a job since I was thirteen years old, either working for myself or working for someone else. This is because I’ve developed a skillset that suits me well, and I’ve learned how to sell my skillset to people. When you run your own business, it’s like having a job interview every week because you have to go out and sell yourself, whether it’s to a company or a potential customer. You get a guy who wants to build five or six confectionary stores, and you want to build all of his cabinetry for him. You have to go out and convince him that you can build the product the way he wants it, give him the quality that he wants, and do it in the timeframe that he wants. You know, he looks at you as a blind person and says, ‘I don’t know how the guy gets across the street, so can he do all this stuff for me?’”

–Fred Wurtzel, A Hands-On Guy Doing Hands-On Work in the Information Age, Braille Monitor, May 2016

Enchanted Hills Camp Construction Manager George Wurtzel, who is also a highly regarded artist, was recently profiled by his brother, former NFB President Fred Wurtzel, in this article published by the Braille Monitor. You can read the entire article here.