Timber Frame Barn Raising

ReFraming the WaterShed

Help ReThink Red Deer Raise the Roof at Piper Creek!



For the last five years, an ambitious group of organizations, businesses, and volunteers have been busy as beavers at the Piper Creek Community Gardens. Together, we've done some cool things like install one of Canada's largest Food Forests and Pollinator Gardens, restore the banks of Piper Creek, and plant lots of new beaver habitat! Oh ya, AND we hosted some hungry goats with the City's Parks Department! Baah'd Plant Management & Reclamation

But last summer, we were sad to see the old iconic barn be demolished for safety reasons. The site looks so empty now, in spite of all the beautiful plants growing. It's just not the same when you know what it looked like before.

Top Peg Timber Frame Construction

SO, to wrap things up in our final year, we're teaming up with our friends at Top Peg Timber Frame Construction and the Timber Framers Guild! We plan to host a community barn raising that would replace the beloved structure... but we need YOUR help to do it. We've secured a $25,000 grant from the Alberta Real Estate Foundation to host the timber framers and coordinate the project but we still need funds (or corporate sponsors!) to get the materials and equipment that most grants out there just won't cover.

The barn design is an open-air timber frame structure to harvest rainwater for the planted areas of the site and the walls serve as space for installing pollinator habitat with the help of Living Lands Landscape and Design (making it Canada's largest pollinator hotel) and supporting - in a BIG way - the City of Red Deer's Pollinator Parks initiative!

It's important to note that formal approvals are still pending (e.g., building permit) and no capital funds are being requested from the City of Red Deer. Instead, project organizers are leveraging volunteer efforts by tapping into the power of the crowd with a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign this summer. The campaign runs from August 4 to October 1, wrapping up on the Alberta Culture Days weekend when Guild members from around western Canada and the Pacific Northwest (US) plan to gather at Piper Creek Community Gardens to get familiar with the project, run some timber framing demos for the public, and get more familiar with the community of Red Deer.


Here's the schedule of events in support of the campaign (updated July 25):

  • Thursday, July 19 - Meet & Bleet - meet the goats at Piper Creek Community Gardens (9:30am to 1:00pm)
  • Thursday, July 19 - Green Drinks at Piper Creek Community Gardens (5pm to 8pm) - prizes and sociables (non-alcoholic)!
  • Wednesday, August 1 - Green Drinks at Troubled Monk (5pm to 8pm) - prizes and sociables!
  • Saturday, August 4 - Campaign Kick-Off at the Red Deer Public Market (8am to 12pm)
  • Wednesday, August 15 - Green Drinks at Troubled Monk (5pm to 8pm) - prizes and sociables!
  • Saturday, August 18 - AB Open Farm Days BBQ at Piper Creek Community Gardens (10am to 5pm)
    • Timber Frame Demo - spiffy biffy completion
    • Tours of the Canada 150 Food Forest and Pollinator Garden
  • Timber Frame Friday, August 31 - Green Drinks at Troubled Monk (5pm to 8pm) - prizes and sociables!
  • Red Deer Public Market, Saturday, September 1 (8am to 12:30pm) - Campaign mid-point and video launch
  • Timber Frame Friday, September 14 - Green Drinks at Troubled Monk (5pm to 8pm) - prizes and sociables!
  • Timber Frame Friday, September 28 - Green Drinks at Troubled Monk (5pm to 8pm) - prizes and sociables!
  • September 28 - 30 - AB Culture Days at Piper Creek Community Gardens (10am to 5pm)
    • "Timber Frame Friday" - Timber Frame Demos - project sign making, tours of the Canada 150 Food Forest and Pollinator Garden
    • "Pollinator Saturday" - Timber Frame Demos - hand-crafted timber frame pollinator hotel, tours of the Canada 150 Food Forest and Pollinator Garden
    • Garlic City Market (garlic festival) - Farmers Market, various demos, scythe vs. brush cutter challenge, tours of the Canada 150 Food Forest and Pollinator Garden

Check out our progress with salvaging the barn wood siding last summer before it was demolished:


About the Timber Framers Guild

Timber Frame Ceiiing

The Timber Framers Guild (TFG) is committed to connecting with communities and people, sharing the story of timber framing, and learning and teaching through doing.

To that end, they work with localities, non-profit organizations, and coalitions of organizations to build beautiful timber frame structures that will benefit and strengthen the people and places where we all work and live - as well as those far from our own homes. These structures enrich not only the lives of the people they serve - offering new gathering places in the form of farmers' market pavilions, amphitheatres, bridges, and community centers - they enrich the lives of TFG members as together we build skills and knowledge, meet new people, and rally behind a worthy project, working together to bring it to life.Timber Framing

Since 1985, the Timber Framers Guild has raised nearly 100 timber frames for communities across North America and beyond. The majority are public or non-profit buildings.

ReThink Red Deer and supporting organizations are aiming to host a community barn raising with members of the Timber Framers Guild to replace the barn removed in the summer of 2017 at the Piper Creek project site. The proposed barn is designed as an open-air timber frame structure to demonstrate green building while providing valuable services including rainwater harvesting and pollinator habitat built into the walls to serve as the world's largest pollinator hotel...! 

Contribute to our crowdfunding campaign from August 4 to October 1 to help raise the funds to raise the roof!

And check out the Raising Pemberton video for an idea of what Timber Frame Barn Raising is all about:

RAISING PEMBERTON • Building Community With The Timber Framers Guild from Ramshackle Pictures on Vimeo.