Tiny home inspires big dreams

By Katherine Trelstad
Reader Contributor

If you stop by Evans Brothers Coffee Roasters and gaze across the parking lot, you will notice something new. A tiny home on wheels is parked adjacent to the Granary. This house is seriously, really tiny. The Eureka Institute is building the 190 square foot home as part of Construction Basics Initiative (CBI), a program that provides job skills training and connects underserved and out of work youth with employment opportunities.

Katherine Trelstad.

Four students spent last summer working on the tiny home alongside Executive Director Steve Holt, learning about tool safety, framing, roofing and siding among other things. Holt’s goal is to help local youth find local jobs. CBI programs reverse “millennial drain,” a well known phenomena in Sandpoint where high school graduates leave town to pursue college or work opportunities that they can’t find here. The tiny home will be at the Granary for a few more weeks while it’s being completed, after which the buyer will tow it off the lot to a piece of land in Gig Harbor, Wash. Stop by and look inside, ask questions, and place your order for a Eureka Institute custom-built tiny home.

Tiny homes are just one of several big dreams simmering at Eureka’s newly relocated office on Fifth Avenue at Cedar Street Station. We’ve partnered with Seattle’s Cornish College of the Arts and the city of Sandpoint to facilitate a college engagement project for junior and senior interior architecture students. Cornish students are designing site plans for the Inland Northwest’s premier retreat facility located at the 42-acre Eureka Center in Sagle. In conjunction with Sandpoint city planning efforts for the University of Idaho property at Boyer, Cornish students are developing their own land use concepts, incorporating classroom theory with research interviews of Sandpoint city staff and guided tours of the Boyer property itself. This innovative project is getting all of us here at Eureka Institute very excited about lifelong learning and leadership. Graduating seniors will display their final projects at Cornish College’s Bachelor of Fine Arts Exhibition in Seattle this May.

You, dear readers, are invited to join us for a special local event this month. Wednesday, Feb. 7, at 5:30 p.m., Idaho Pour Authority will host a fundraiser for Eureka Institute and True North Treks. This is a true FUNdraiser with beer on tap from 12 String Brewing Company, live music, free appetizers and dollar raffle tickets for several fantastic gifts donated by local businesses: City Beach Organics, Eichardt’s, Evans Brothers, Breakwater Expeditions, Whiskey Jack Pottery, Wildflower Spa, Red Shed, Moondance Movement and Winter Ridge.

Later this spring, thanks to a grant from the Equinox Foundation and Selkirks Pend Oreille Transit (SPOT), Eureka will be building two SPOT bus shelters. The first shelter will go up at Jeff Jones Square in Sandpoint and the second is headed for the bus stop at Bonner Mall in Ponderay. We need your support! You can help build the next SPOT bus shelter by purchasing a sponsorship brick at https://www.eureka-institute.org. When you buy a brick your name will be featured at the shelter site along with other individuals and businesses that have donated. This is the perfect way to let everyone know that you support free, safe and accessible public transportation.

Speaking of opportunities to get involved, the Eighth Annual Northwest Yoga Feast will be held July 20-22. As program director, I am particularly excited about the lineup of talented teachers and artists this year. Musical groups include Mahapurna from Toronto, Ontario and DubSutra from Riverside, Calif. Northwest Yoga Feast will also feature local legends Gaia and Shannon Rei from Sandpoint’s own Takyama Dojo, Kelly Thielbar from Sandpoint Hot Yoga and Brietta Leader from Embody Studio. New discount ticket offers include group rates for parties of three or more. Northwest Yoga Feast 2018 is limited to 108 participants to ensure a quality experience. Get your tickets at www.nwyogafeast.com.

To hear more about Eureka Institute’s big dreams, catch Steve Holt and yours truly in our most recent KRFY interview podcast at: https://www.krfy.org/podcast/october-4-2017. To receive quarterly updates, subscribe to Eureka Institute Newsletter at https://www.eureka-institute.org.

Katherine Trelstad is program director at Eureka Institute and assistant professor of social science at Cornish College of the Arts.

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