Philip and Ivy White stand next to the “most square/straight/round stack” winner in the first-ever Pioneers of Alaska wood stacking contest. (Photo courtesy of Shannon Crossley/Pioneers of Alaska)

Philip and Ivy White stand next to the “most square/straight/round stack” winner in the first-ever Pioneers of Alaska wood stacking contest. (Photo courtesy of Shannon Crossley/Pioneers of Alaska)

Pioneers of Alaska in Juneau hold first-ever Wood Stacking Contest

Stockpiling firewood for the winter has moved up a notch, as participants in the first annual Pioneers of Alaska wood stacking contest can attest.

Competitors in the Juneau area showed off their stacking abilities in six different categories, piling up bragging rights for excelling in their demonstration of old-fashioned self-sufficiency skills.

“Back in the day having your wood properly stacked could mean the difference between life and death,” explains Kara Johnson, the chairman of the Pioneer’s Wood Stacking Competition committee. “Not having enough wood, the wrong mix, or having it get punky or rot instead of seasoning properly are all factors that would make a long cold winter that much harder in the early days of Alaska.”

The Pioneers of Alaska (POA) is fraternal organization that honors and preserves the history of Alaska and works for the betterment of all Alaskans. The Juneau Women’s Igloo recently celebrated the 100-year anniversary of their charter.

“As an organization we are really redefining what historic preservation looks like,” explains POA Women’s Igloo President Dorene Lorenz. “You have to make it relevant, so folks appreciate our past enough to want to preserve it. We are installing interpretive signage at the different holes at the Treadwell disk golf course next spring, so people learn the importance of the buildings they are playing around and through. Judging the wood stacking competition was a hoot, it was fun to see so many families get involved and sharpen their pioneering skillsets.”

Category winners:

Stacked: most square/straight/round stack: Philip White

Get ‘er Done: biggest self-supported stack: Ethan Romeling

Protect Your Wood: best wood storage: Charlie & Jamalea Martell

Baby Got Wood: most wood quantity: Doug White; 18 cords

Woodsy: best creative/artistic stack: Nathan Barzee

Accessibility: easiest stack to get to: Clinton Singletary

Winners of each Wood Stacking category were put into a drawing. First prize, a Pioneers of Alaska Juneau leather and oilcloth wood carrying tote was won by Ethan Romeling. Second price, a copy of Lars Mytting’s classic tome on wood stacking, Norwegian Wood, went to Doug White.

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