The Lake Placid Woodcarving Experience

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The Lake Placid Woodcarving Experience

3 different class events each year


2014 Fall LPWE class event 8-20 September 2014

2015 CCA Carve-a-long East 12,13,14 May 2015

2015 Spring LPWE class event 8-12 June 2015

Will be held at the historic hotel Northwoods Inn 2520 Main Street, Lake Placid, NY 12946 Toll Free: (866) 294-7171. The Northwoods Inn is located in the heart of this Village which has been home to both the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympics. Take a look at this wonderful facility here.

The hotel is the tallest building in this picture

What is this all about?

Welcome to woodcarving in Lake Placid - this will be the 5th year of the program at Northwoods Inn where once again we will have a Spring Lake Placid Woodcarving Experience (LPWE) event in addition to the regular Fall LPWE event as well as the CCA Carve-a-long East event.

The Fall LPWE event will be 8 - 20 September 2014. Class info is available now and registrations are being accepted.

The CCA Carve-a-along East - while 2015 program has not yet been established - the 2014 class info will give you an idea of costs, schedules and all details - visit it's web site at 2014 CCA Carve-a-along East

Following the CCA Carve-a-long East will be the 2015 Spring LPWE event Dates for both events in 2015 are not yet established.

During the Spring and Fall LPWE events there will be a mix of 2, 3, 4, and 5 day classes among the sessions so look closely at each class length. In all classes there should be time enough for most carvers to complete and paint or put a finish coat on the projects without feeling "rushed". Most classes are expected to have a low student to instructor ratio for maximum individual attention. Each class is priced differently and you pay the instructor directly for both instructional fees and blank fees. Some class may be appropriate for novice students where they can get very individualized attention, most such classes will say that. If you are unsure or would like to join a class anyway- feel free to contact Jim O'Dea or the instructor to discuss the class.

The CCA_Carve-a-long East is a different type of event. You will spend one day with each instructor working on a different project with each instructor. You will pay the hotel for room, meals, and instruction - only blank fees are paid directly to the instructors. This carving class uses hand tools only and is suitable for anyone with some experience using palm sized hand tools including knives, v-tools and gouges. This event was moved in 2013 to Lake Placid, NY under the sponsorship of the LPWE and the Northwoods Inn. For class info, costs, schedules and details visit it's web site at CCA Carve-a-along East *

2014 Fall LPWE class event during the period 8-20 September 2014 include:
1st session classes start on different days during the week of 8 September 2014, check each class description for start and end date

Habitat - 2 day class starting on Friday 12 Sept and ending on Saturday 13 Sept
Relief - 3 day class starting on Friday 12 Sept ending on Sunday 14 Sept
Caricature - 3 day class starting on Thursday 11 Sept and ends on Saturday 13 Sept
"Ovenbird" - 5 day class starting on Tuesday 9 Sept and ending on Saturday 13 Sept
Relief - 3 day class starting on Thursday 11 Sept and ends on Saturday 13 Sept.
to see the current info about the Fall LPWE 1st session - click here

2nd session starting Sunday 14 September 2014 - all classes in this session start on the same day and end on different days, check each class description for start and end date

Dennis "Butch" Clark - Habitat 2 day class starting on Sunday 14 Sept and ending on Monday 15 Sept.
Al Jordan - Saw-Whet owl - (THIS CLASS IS FULL)5 day class starting on Sunday 14 Sept and ending on Thursday 18 Sept.
Leah Goddard - Animals -5 day class starting on Sunday 14 Sept and ending on Thursday 18 Sept.
Chris Howard - Mountain Character "Popcorn" - 3 day class starting on Sunday 14 Sept and ending on Tuesday 16 Sept.
Pete LeClair - Caricatures - 3 day class starting on Sunday 14 Sept and ending on Tuesday 16 Sept
to see the current info about the Fall LPWE 2nd session- click here


During the Spring and Fall LPWE events we offer several "Hotel Package" deals for accommodations and meals as well as the option to be a commuter (RV or from home) and have Lunch. These "Packages" include the cost of the facility usage for classes but not the class instructional fee and materials (which are paid directly to the instructors).

We will start off each Spring and Fall LPWE event sessions the evening before with a reception at 7pm in the Hotel's lounge area. Meet and greet your instructors and fellow carvers, with very light snacks and beverages. Gary Smith, the hotel owner, will be on hand to welcome you and provide an overview of the Hotel's history and orient you to the Lake Placid area. There are many sights to be seen and your non-carving companion will have plenty to do and enjoy. See the many exciting things to do in Lake Placid here.

Classes start each morning at 8am to 4:30pm and winding down about 3pm on your last day for those heading home. A breakfast (7:30 to 8am) and Lunch (12:00 to 1pm) are provided on site for your convenience as part of a package plan for the classes. For dinner, you are free to explore the city with it's many fine restaurants within a few blocks walk or eat at the Northwoods Inn dining room.

Non-Carving Companion Classes :
Non-carving classes are dependent on someone volunteering to teach one. So far for Sept 2014:
"All Season Gourd Birdfeeder" class will be teaching during both the 1st and 2nd sessions appropriate for anyone including non-carving companions
-two day (half days)class on Friday 12 Sept/Saturday 13 Sept (See class description click here) and then repeated again on Sunday 14/Monday 15 Sept (See her class description click here). If you would like to teach a class please contact Jim O'Dea at
Once announced that there will be a class, reservation for these classes are made by emailing the instructor directly so enough materials will be available. Classes days and times will be determined by participants while you are there such that you get in as many activities as you desire based on weather and interest. Classes are not expected to run concurrently so you may take all if you wish. .

Non-Carving Companion Activities: We will coordinate tours and site seeing for the non-carving companions whom wish to go as a group. Let us know at the reception if you have someone coming that would be interested.

Services and Supplies available

  • During the Spring and Fall LPWE, a free sharpening clinic will be held late afternoon before start of class from 5pm to 6pm. Jim O'Dea will show you how to use power sharpening equipment and help you with your sharpening. Bring your tools and get them sharpened up before class start.
  • There will be some carving tools, gouges, knives, ABRANET, gloves, books, Ram rotary tools, and Colewood burners available for purchase during the workshops. Some instructors may have their books, blanks, carvings and tools for sale as well.

    Spring and Fall LPWE Hotel Accommodations Package Plan one price which includes your room, reception, cookout dinner, plus breakfast and lunch each day is available. There is also an optional spouse/companion reception, cookout, and meal plan. Check the Northwoods Inn web site for -Both Spring and Fall package plans click here. Contact the Hotel directly to make your package plan reservation.

    Spring and Fall Commuter Plans for those not staying at the hotel (ie. RV's or from home, etc.) If you are not staying in a room at the hotel, you will need a "Commuter" Plan. The package includes the hotel's class space usage fee plus the Reception, Cookout, and Lunches only for 2, 3,4, 5 and 6 day classes. Spring and Fall RV and Commuter Plans click here. Contact the Hotel directly to make your Commuter plan reservation. Local RV parks include the KOA seen here and State Parks listed here Saranac Lake Islands here and Wilington Notch here. There may be more in the immediate area that I am not aware of, if so please bring them to my attention.

    How to make Spring and Fall LPWE Woodcarving Class reservations: email Jim O'Dea at and let Jim know what class you want. We don't expect large classes, but if there is a problem with max class size, Jim will contact you and work out an alternative or ensure you get a full Hotel Package refund. No deposit is required for class reservations. Class costs vary with specific classes so be sure to read the descriptions carefully noting any additional blank or roughout costs. Contact Jim O'Dea or the instructor with questions on the class content, the hotel staff will NOT have any info about any class. Age Requirement: Students should be at least 18 years of age. No one under the age of 18 is permitted to participate in a class unless their parent is also enrolled in the same class and under their supervision. Please note that Jim is often traveling and will have intermittent internet access with periods of up to a week without such access so please be patient in expecting a response. When time is of the essence, call him at 941-697-2002 cell. There is usually plenty of spaces available in all classes and in the unlikely event a class fills up it will be indicated so on the class description. You will be assigned a spot based upon the date/time stamp of your email to Jim so go ahead and send in your request and he will respond as soon as possible

    The Spring and Fall LPWE Schedule for a look at the tentative schedule for this event click here.

    The Weather at Lake Placid - while always great, the details and a 10 day forecast are available by clicking here.

    Pictures of the 2011 LPWE click here

    News articles about the 2011 event: for 2011 event click here.

    Lake Placid is an upscale sight seeing destination for your non-carving companions as well as providing a great carving experience for you. Most Carving events are held in locations where there is not much to do for non-carving companions - this will be the exception!! Most carving events are in facilities with minimal room sizes and minimal dinning experiences - this will be the exception! The rooms at the Northwoods are large, suite size rooms,VERY comfortable mattresses and the meals are fine dinning quality.

    Lake Placid is located in the Adirondack Region of Northern New York State. This region is unlike any other area of the Northeastern United States, larger than many neighboring states, the Adirondack Region is a blend of quaint, friendly villages that are surrounded by millions of acres of forests. The forests are filled with hundreds of pristine lakes and ponds, endless miles of rivers and streams, and the famous Adirondack Mountains. We are known for our picturesque hiking and walking trails, wilderness paddling opportunities, unparalleled winter recreation where the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympics were held, and year-round Adirondack hospitality. Just a short, easy drive from any east coast metropolitan center, we are closer than you think, and further from anything you can imagine! We encourage you to explore The Adirondack Region web site and our region, and plan your trip.

    There is so much to see and do in Lake Placid and throughout Adirondacks Region, with so many different areas to visit, plan to come a few days early or stay a few days after, The Hotel will be glad to extend your stay at the same low room rate, just ask for the "extended woodcarver" rate.

    For a "virtual tour" by boat of Lake Placid click here.

    For a real boat tour try the Lake Placid Marina 518-523-9704 - Cruise pristine waters on a pontoon boat. Highlights of the $15 (adults) one-hour narrated tour which travels 16 miles and includes good views of the former summer residences of the singer Kate Smith, Victor Herbert and Johnny Weissmuller. The tours are available several time a day, May to Oct. Call for current schedule and pricing (518) 523-9704.

    For a nature walk try "High Falls Gorge", an eight mile drive from Lake Placid seen here.

    Links to other Woodcarving Class Events - click here

    Links to Woodcarving Clubs

  • Wood Carving Club of Quebec and their Facebook page

  • OUTAOUAIS WOOD CARVERS in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

  • Les Artisans Sculpteurs des Cantons (The Artisans Sculptors Townships)in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada

  • Hudson Valley Wood Carvers Club,Pleasant Valley NY.

  • Lancaster Carvers - Lancaster, PA

  • Genesee Valley Woodcarvers (GVW)- Rochester, New York

    Links to Woodcarving Shows

  • Canadian National Wildfowl Carving Championship held in Waterloo, Ontario in March

  • Genesee Valley Woodcarvers competition and show - Rochester, New York in April

    Subscribe to LakePlacidWoodcarving and get notified of significant updates to the carving program and the web site
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