The story behind the chamber’s artistic new tasting room
Great communities are created when individuals exert themselves to make extraordinary contributions that make a lasting difference.
When chamber executive director Shiloh Schauer approached Klinginsmith to create a concrete countertop for the tasting room, Klinginsmith suggested that something much more creative could be done to show off the valley’s heritage. Klinginsmith told me that Schauer and chamber employee Jerri Barkley had been tremendously helpful when he was organizing the PUD’s Andrew York Memorial Lineman Rodeo and he wanted to do something special to return the favor. They gave him wide latitude to follow his creative instincts.
As the project evolved, Klinginsmith enlisted the help of three friends to help out. Home builder Jim Mott put in a tremendous amount of time helping out, and Mott’s building partner Ace Bollinger also pitched in. Zach Lodato, another builder and fabricator and a part owner of the building, constructed the tables using wood reclaimed from the building. Mott told me that he appreciated the opportunity to stretch his creativity in the project. The four of them collaborated on aspects of the project and figured out interesting ways to show off the historic elements of the building.
Everyone they asked to help pitched in and volunteered. Jim Foreman at Foreman Orchards donated the old fruit truck that is being used as the wine bar. Klingsmith spent a lot of time cleaning it up, and cutting it so it could be used as a wine bar. When it came time to move the truck in, Joe Anderson and his crew from Anderson landscaping provided the manpower, Klinginsmith told me. Wells and Wade Mechanical provided the galvanized metal work, including backsplashes. Precision Water Jet went out of its way to prepare the massive elevator gear that is now part of the countertop seating in the tasting room.
Teacher Steve Priest from Wenatchee High School will be soon be installing a mural near the truck that his students have developed depicting an orchard scene. The tables were fabricated out of metal with wood reclaimed from the building, thanks to Lodato’s expertise. Ben Wintler of Clearview Plumbing was working elsewhere in the building and offered to create a unique sink and faucet. “Every piece has a story,” Mott told me. Since virtually all of the material was reclaimed or donated from the community, it was an inexpensive project. The major contribution was time and creative energy.
This is what community is all about — people who care about the community and invest their time and creativity to make important contributions. Our chamber has an extraordinary new visitor center because Klinginsmith volunteered to do something special and Schauer and Barkley gave him free reign to use his creative talents.
What was accomplished will become a significant destination for visitors to our valley rather than just a run-of-the-mill visitor center. It’s a work of art that is the result of many people contributing to make something special.