July 16 @ 10:35 am
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During this unique and experiential month-long program participants will be living, learning and working together ~ while learning a wide range of skills!

* Natural Building & Sustainability Classes and Hands-on.
* Enrichment Activities such as spoon-making and fermenting.
* Healthy, tasty meals
* A connection with nature & each other.


See 2020 Winternship Blog


   “Best. Experience. Ever.”   Winternship 2016  Doug Reith

You will have a printed folder of handouts, and access to online copies for our classes on foundations, round pole framing, stoves, earth plasters and more.

On this beautiful rural wooded land  1 hour North of Detroit. Six miles outside a lovely small town, surrounded by farms, forests and meadows.  Within 6 miles of the Strawbale Studio there are some very nice outdoor opportunities:  Bald Mountain Recreation Center, The Seven Ponds Recreation Center and the Rails to Trails bike path system, connecting several small towns.  (There is a bike available to use).  Two swimming lakes and a series of connected lakes to explore by canoe.


Natural Buildings on site ~  Strawbale Studio, Kids Cottage, Hobbit Sauna, Retreat Cabin,

Heat Devices ~ Rocket Stove Heated Bench, Rumford Fireplace Outdoor Rocket Stove Cooker. Hay Box Cooker, Compost Furnace, Hobbit Sauna ! Solar Cooker (use in warm weather only)

Natural  & Local Foods ~ Fermenting Sauerkraut and injira sourdough wraps. Opt:  make hickory nut milk, acorn meal.

Composting ~ 4 types.        Warm Weather Internships:  Foraging, Shitake Log Fruiting & Harvest.

Enrichment ~ NVC (Non-Violent Communication) / Compassionate Communication / Reflective Listening.  Visit East River Farm.  Guest Teacher:  Jared Bogdonov-Hannah or Matthew McCoul on nutrient cycles on-site (biochar, wood ash, 3 types Compost, biomass, other) & integrating permaculture principles into our day/study.

Day-off options: Do your own thing.  Perhaps …. Read, or Whittle & spoon carve. Study / design / model-making. Small round pole model. Finish Worktrade hours. Local Fieldtrip: 7 ponds Nature Center, Bald Mountain Recreation area, Detroit, etc. Bonfire, hang out in Strawbale Studio, sauna. Resturants:  White Horse Inn. Dryden.  Victorias, Oxford.  Sagebrush Cantena, Lake Orion.  20 Front Street.  Kombucha & music venue.

Browse the Resource Library 

Extensive books selection on Strawbale, Cob, Thatching, Herbs & Foraging, and much more. Earth Plaster / Magwood. Videos on sustainability & natural building ~ such as Ben Law – Round Pole Framing. Strawbale Solution, Mud, Hands – A House. Alone in the Wilderness. Building Codes for a Small Planet. Simondale  Low Impact Home for Living in the Future. Cold Day: SBS slideshow Round Pole Movie trailer.


2 Program Options:  Intern, with some1/2 Pay Worktrade available.  Woofing not available this intensive month.
All Programs include room & board, classes & materials, plus sharing of household activities such as cooking & cleaning.

  • Intern  = Focus on the Projects.  Cost per month $950 or $850 prepaid 1 month in advance.
  • 1/2 Pay Worktrade =  Students participate in the Internship & all classes. In addition, 1/2 Pay Worktrade students contribute 10 hours Worktrade per week toward upkeep (office, grounds, gardens, based on participants skills & needs of Strawbale Studio). Cost per month: $475 or $425 prepaid 1 month in advance.


Step 1  Look over the Application Form and Expectations, below, then
Step 2 Fill out the Application (see below) or call Deanne to ask questions
Step 3 When your application is received, your references will be contacted.  Deanne will get back with you.  If accepted into the program….
Step 4 After acceptance, PAYMENT can be made by Paypal / or check / money order to PO Box 733, Oxford, MI 48371 248 496 4088

Payment PAYPAL~ Intern $850 by Dec 5, 2022 or $950 thereafter. 1/2 Pay Worktrade Intern $425 by Dec 5 or $475 thereafter.   Click the Buy Now* button.Buy Now Button  * For CLARITY include your name(s), phone, city + the name & date of the event you want to attend, 
*If the button doesn’t work, open your own paypal account & send payment to ecoartdb@gmail.com.

Main Instructor & Coordinator, Deanne Bednar, is the illustrator of the Hand-Sculpted House & the Natural Plaster Book, and has 20 years of experience in natural building. Background: Art & Sustainable Futures teacher at the middle school level.  Loves to forage, use materials directly from nature in an artful and practical way !




See Strawbale Studio Year-in-Review Reports & Photos!  2020, 2019, 2018  & more. (2021 & 2022 are under construction) 2014 Winternship Blog by Kirsten Pope,Wintern    2015 Winternship Blog by Nana Ferdnance  2015 Winternship Outline & Schedule  2016 Winternship Blog by Doug Reith 2016 Winternship Activities List   Winternship 2016: Thatching  Winternship 2016: Week 1  2018 Outline of Winternship  2020 WINTERNSHIP OUTLINE Pictures below are from previous years’ adventures.

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January 5, 2023 @ 8:00 am
February 5, 2023 @ 5:00 pm
$425 – $950