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Friday Harbor Brickworks: Community Restored

It is an Ugly Duckling sort of story.

The Brickworks building on Nichols Street, adjacent to Coho Restaurant in Friday Harbor, Washington, began its life almost 100 years ago, as a brick manufacturing business in the 20’s The building began deteriorating when the company closed.  1921 brickworks friday harbor

Over the decades, it became a bit of an eyesore….but Islanders are known for their recycling efforts, and by the turn of this century, the agricultural community began to visualize a restoration for this building with its great location in the heart of Friday Harbor.  Work began in earnest, and thanks to a well coordinated and well populated volunteer effort, Brickworks was restored and re-opened in June of 2013.

Today's Brickworks. friday harbor
Today’s Brickworks. Volunteers showed up daily to help for over six months. Photo courtesy of www.fhbrickworks.com

In July of 2015, local sculptor Matthew Gray Palmer donated a public sculpture for Brickworks, named, appropriately, PIG.  His inspiration was basically “this little piggy went to market”, but also has references to the famous Pig War.

Pig sculpture by Matthew Gray Palmer, at Brickworks Friday Harbor
Pig sculpture by Matthew Gray Palmer, at Brickworks Friday Harbor

Set Up for September Wedding at Brickworks, arranged by Tucker House's Wedding Planner Anna Maria, catered by Coho Restaurant

Recent events include several weddings catered by Coho Restaurant, the weekly farmer’s market, a chili cook off,  a fashion show to benefit the local family resource center, and a series of farm-related documentaries every Tuesday evening.  The Brickworks are located within walking distance of both Harrison House Suites and Tucker House Inn.  Check out Brickworks events at their website.

 

There are no bricks being made these days – but Brickworks has become a place to make memories, learn new skills, remember loved ones, dance, laugh, and celebrate our community and its agricultural roots.  Home of the year round Farmer’s Market, an Art Market during the summer, wedding and memorial service venue…anything goes!

The building has transitioned from a supplier for other buildings to building our community.

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