Full Chisel Blog

August 24, 2008

All good things come to an end…

Filed under: Uncategorized — Stephen Shepherd @ 2:46 pm

as has my tenure at This is the Place Heritage Park in Salt Lake City.  I had been there 4 years with a year and a half back in the 1970’s, I have worked there under 4 administrations, so this is the fourth time I have been fired (well I didn’t renew a contract for one of those occasions) from there, not sure it looks good for either of us.  Oh well, I saw it coming and am well prepared to enjoy my (f)unemployment and I am close to retiring age, so no worries.

This will however free me up to spend more time on my blog (and new web site, coming soon) and I will be free to travel and maybe do some workshops, hint, hint.  I also plan on spending time writing, I have some drawings I would like to do, finish my novel and some personal projects I need to finish.  I have a couple of books to finish and a few to have reprinted. 

Now that I will have the time, I will get these things completed.  I have made arrangements for new shop space, but will be without my shop for a couple of weeks, lots of stuff to box up and move out, then set up.  Now maybe I can find a few things I know I have but don’t know where they are.

I had fun there and I harbor no hard feelings, I still love the Park.  But I am on to other things.




  1. So sad. We will miss seeing pictures of your old shop with the chair on the roof.

    BTW, if you have to downsize and are looking for someone to keep some things for a while…. Just kidding.

    Comment by Luke Townsley — August 24, 2008 @ 4:21 pm

  2. Hi Stephen,

    Sorry to hear that, but pleased to see that you already have “moved on”. I retired a few years ago, and am able to do things to my own timetable and spend time with family and friends, doing woodworking projects. I can thoroughly recommend it. Good luck with the move to the new shop, I look forward to hearing how it goes.


    Comment by Ray Gardiner — August 24, 2008 @ 5:38 pm

  3. A sort of congratulations to you, Stephen!

    I’ll be looking forward to what is in store for you–and us as the willing receipients of your endeavors as you move forward.

    As an aside, I was once fired three times in one day from a particular job. Worked there without incident for another year before going back to self-employment.

    All our best to you and yours.

    Take care, Mike

    Comment by Mike — August 24, 2008 @ 5:42 pm

  4. Stephen,

    Look at this as an opportunity. Being proficient in journalism within the woodworking industry, maybe that will offer something…and whatever you do, I’m sure you’ll be involved with working wood in some way…Thanks for all your advice and help in the past, will be watching to see where you land on your feet, and hopefully you’ll continue to offer advice to folks like me, just like you have to date…:-)


    Comment by Alan — August 24, 2008 @ 6:26 pm

  5. Stephen

    The Park will be a poorer place without you. But I understand the lure of retirement as it looms over the horizon. I look forward to where your creativity and insight takes both you and us.

    We’ll stay in touch, particularly as your pursue your chosen projects and paths.


    Comment by Gary Roberts — August 24, 2008 @ 8:27 pm

  6. Stephen,
    By the sounds of it you are not taking this as a bad thing so therefore I say congratulations. It’s not often that one can take a situation like this and turn it into an opportunity, which it soulds like you have already done. I look forward to the new web site and wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.

    Comment by Bob Rozaieski — August 24, 2008 @ 9:53 pm

  7. How dare they!

    Well actually, I don’t care much about the Park (have never been there, probably won’t pass by there). You have already made 80% of the transition by looking forward to being your own time master and pursuing a lot of other ideas. It’s absolutely fabulous being unemployed (retired 9 months ago), and I’m sure you will enjoy all those projects awaiting.

    You see, this announcement gives a lot of us “lurkers” the opportunity to pipe up and let you know we’ve been watching. THANKS for all that you’ve taught us, and I’ll look forward to learning more.

    All the best!

    Comment by Bob Easton — August 24, 2008 @ 10:15 pm

  8. Bravo to you for a great attitude! No doubt, you will land gracefully on your feet. Enjoy pursuing the things you love most. All the best.

    Comment by The Village Carpenter — August 25, 2008 @ 8:53 am

  9. Stephen,

    Sounds like you have mixed feelings about what has happened. You were prepared and that is always good.

    Good luck with your future things and look forward to hearing about them.

    Comment by Praki — August 26, 2008 @ 12:11 am

  10. Thank you all for your kind words. I am off this morning with Mr. Buss, my very good friend and a volunteer in my shop at the park, to pack up my tools. Another friend will bring his large panel truck up later in the week to load up everything and move it to my new space. I will be setting up a period shop (as that is all I have) that is set up for ‘filming’ (but I don’t think he will be using film) as well as the work I do.

    There are many things I will miss about the Park, mainly the people who work there. I have also met some interesting people that visited the Park. And the kids were usually great and had a good time at my shop. And there are things that I will not miss: the heat, the cold, the flies, the little kids picking up a plane and planing the workbench top or the edge of my shooting board.

    But I have the memories (and a shooting board with a round front edge) and I will treasure those. Again thank you all for your comments, I will keep you posted on the progress.


    P.S. Bob Easton, how did you get your picture on here, I have been trying to get my mug up there?

    Comment by Stephen Shepherd — August 26, 2008 @ 6:56 am

  11. Gary,

    A special thanks to Gary Roberts who posted on his blog at Toolemera some kind words. Thank You.


    Comment by Stephen Shepherd — August 26, 2008 @ 7:10 am

  12. Stephen,
    Getting caught up on some of my reading. Alas my retirement is a long, long, long way off so gotta pay the piper 9 to 5 for now. This is a very bittersweet read for me as I am sad for you and sad for the Park as losing you. However, I am thrilled to hear some of your ideas and ambitions. I think this could be the best thing to happen to you as well as your fans. I hope you are not teasing about teaching some workshops because I have already cleared my schedule and am waiting with bated breath. Good luck in everything you do and it seems that your devoted readers may reap some great rewards with your new found time on your hands.

    “The Renaissance Woodworker”

    Comment by Shannon — August 26, 2008 @ 6:21 pm

  13. I’m sorry to read about this change of circumstances. I was hoping to get out your way the summer of 2009. Next year I’ll be spending one day a month as a first-person woodworker at a California stage-stop circa 1876.

    Now you can reprint your 18th century woodworking book.
    Now you can teach.
    Now you can more actively pass on what you’ve learned, and are learning.


    Comment by Chuck Nickerson — August 27, 2008 @ 10:49 am

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