Winter Break Activity


Winter Break Opportunity

December 27, 28 and 29, 2018, Boardwalk DIY Studio, Andover, MN


Thursday, December 27 - Saturday, December 29, 2018 (class schedules vary - see listing)

Join Boardwalk DIY Studio (Andover, MN) in an immersive experience that allows your child to use both their hands and their minds.

Participants will spend 3 days experiencing wood working, wood finishing, painting and composite materials.  Successful completion of the week gives each student a finished chessboard, chess pieces and a chance to help build our winter (all wood) kayak.

How cool are the projects?  Many projects have been seen at the county and state fair events – earning ribbons and recognition.  If your child is in 4H, we can work with them to include photos and detailed explanations of each step so they can perform their best.

These 3 days are centered on basic woodworking skills and creativity.  

  • Chessboard (checker board)

    • All hardwood - using MN species of Butternut, Silver Maple, Cherry, Walnut and Birch.

    • Includes four or more different types of joints.

  • Chess Pieces

    • Each child can also elect to build a custom chess piece set - made from a blend of wood, nuts, bolts, washers and hooks.

What to Expect

Our time is centered around the patience and process of wood working.  Participants will build up to 2 projects – including a solid hardwood chess board and an optional chess piece set.

While your child is waiting for glue and paint to dry – we explore other subjects related to their projects – including: assisting us in our boat building.  We also show them how to protect their final projects with the use of finishes and composites such as resin and fiberglass (the same materials they use with many boat kits).

Boy Scouts can earn wood working and composite materials if they participate fully in the all 3 days of the class.


Please consider joining us for an awesome week of learning, creation and exploration.

Who Can Attend?

Boys and girls ages 12 – 17 or going into a minimum of the 8th grade. 

If younger students wish to participate - please contact John ( for approval (parent/guardian required to attend)

Boy Scouts – please see additional requirements below.

Boy Scouts wanting to earn certain merit badges must also meet these requirements:

  • Completed blue cards for each merit badge they want to earn.

  • Woodwork Merit Badge: Scouts must be 1st Class and have earned First Aid and have their Totin’ Chip.


Due to limited kitchen space and the very real possibility of food allergies – all participants must bring their own meals and/or snacks as appropriate.  We will strive to provide water and bagged chips throughout the day.  Coolers will be available to keep items cool.  There are no microwaves or ovens to warm meals up.

Students can bring spending money (Amy’s Candy, Subway and Sweet Toppings are nearby). 

Boardwalk DIY will try our best to provide secure places to store electronics – but we cannot guarantee to stop all theft or breakage.

Additional Requirements for Boy Scouts

Merit Badge(s)

Boy Scouts wanting to earn certain merit badges must also meet these requirements:

  • Completed blue cards for each merit badge they want to earn.

  • Woodwork Merit Badge: Scouts must be 1st Class and have earned First Aid and have their Totin’ Chip.


Space is very limited.  Schedule early to get your desired time(s). 

Group 1: Thursday, December 27 – Saturday, December 29, 2018  9a – noon

(Saturday is optional)

  • Student can be dropped off no earlier than 8:45a

  • Student must be picked up no later than 12:30p [1]

Group 2: Thursday, December 27 – Saturday, December 29, 2018 1p - 4p

(Saturday is optional)

  • Student can be dropped off no earlier than 12:45p

  • Student must be picked up no later than 5p [1] 


Fees include building space, materials, tools, storage, basic snacks and wood checkers for your chess board.

  • Groups 1 – 2: $75 per participant (adult helper is free) [11] 

  • Registration closes December 24, 2018 at 6a.

Financial assistance is available. 

A parent/guardian must be able to volunteer a minimum of 4 hrs to receive $20 off fees.  Not all classes will need volunteers.  Limited openings available. 

  • Volunteers must be able to follow directions and assistance with glue, paints, tools, etc.

  • Fees are reimbursed after class completion.

Chess Pieces: (+$25)

Your child can also make chess pieces from nuts, bolts, anchors and more.  We recommend using the ‘optional’ days to focus on these pieces because they do involve solvents, super glue and paint.  Also comes with a plastic carrying case to transport your pieces. 

Tool Use

Note ~ All participants may use hand clippers, chisels, sanding blocks, knives, hand drill and hand saw - among other hand tools.  Participants age 14 and older may also use powered palm sanders, finish sanders, power drills and small grinders (Dremel).  No child under 14 will be allowed to handle any power tool during this course - no exceptions. No participant will be allowed to operate power tools such as a table saw, circular saw, planer, drum sander, miter saw or band saw.


Boardwalk DIY Studio volunteers are not licensed teachers, daycare providers or babysitters (for lack of a better term).  We do have over 11 years of mentoring and teaching students ages 7 – 17 and over 20 years in wood working, crafts and entrepreneurship.

All of the adults helping in this activity are volunteers.  Please treat them with respect and learn from their experience.


All participants are expected to follow the Boy Scout Oath and Law.  If your child is not a Boy Scout – please help familiarize them to these core expectations.

No use of electronics with permission by instructor(s).

Students will be expected to work as a team AND to the best of their ability.  They will NOT be allowed to waste the time or disrupt others.

Arriving/Leaving Studio

Children will be permitted to leave Studio – only at the approved end times for each day – OR when a parent/guardian makes arrangements to pick them up outside of the daily schedule.

All parents/guardians picking up their child MUST present a Driver’s License.

What to bring

  • Lunch/snacks (if needed)

  • Comfortable clothes. Short sleeves preferred, or long sleeves that can be rolled up.

  • Safety glasses.

  • Long hair must be tied back.

  • Boy Scouts must bring a completed Blue Card, Merit Badge Workbook, Notebook and pencils to class. Workbooks and some projects can be done at home during the week.

Dismissal from Activity/Refunds

If parent(s) must be called to pick up their child because of their child’s inability to follow rules and expectations at this activity – there will be no refunds, no readmittance for the rest of the week and an approved parent/guardian must pick them up from Studio.  We cannot let the child leave and walk/bike home on their own.

However, the parent/guardian does have the opportunity to try and talk their child out of whatever rule(s) they are having issues following and we can all return back to class.

Changes to Schedule(s)

Boardwalk DIY Studio has no plans on changing the schedule for the week.  However, if a change becomes necessary – we will work with all affected participants to find a solution.


[1] Students will be expected to work on projects until they leave the activity.  Students are NOT allowed to loiter in the building, disturb other classes, play in the parking lot or disturb other businesses.  They must focus on their projects. 

[11] Adult helpers are encouraged to attend if their child would benefit from the extra help.