The Herald, Sharon, PA Published Saturday, November 2, 2002


Carpenters' union works
on small scale for charity

By Erin Palko
Herald Staff Writer

Members of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners Local 268 in Sharon are used to building houses.

But for about six weeks, the carpenters have been working on a much smaller scale.

Union members have put about 100 hours into a Victorian-style dollhouse, which they will donate to MCAR for an upcoming raffle.

The Mercer County Building and Construction Trades Council donated the $540 in supplies, and union members have volunteered the equivalent of $6,500 in labor, said Samuel J. Shilling, business representative for local 268.

"They come in when they have free time. They put in a lot of time on Saturdays," Shilling said. "You have to give them credit for that, coming in on a Saturday when they've worked the whole week as a carpenter."

Last year, the union designed and built a playhouse for a MCAR raffle, Shilling said.

"We try to do something every year for them," he said.

The carpenters not only built the house itself, they work on little details by applying shingles, shutters, railings and window frames. The steps inside were hand-built.

"You can't believe the hours in that," Shilling said of the house. The roof itself, with dozens of tiny scalloped shingles, took time to assemble, he said.

Shilling said the house should be complete within a week.

The 483-member union participates in community service projects throughout Mercer and Lawrence counties. They installed batting cages at Hickory High School, built a camping trailer for the French Creek Council Boy Scouts, worked on a Habitat for Humanity house in Farrell and built a room at Woodland Place in Coolspring Township so the residents could set up a Christmas tree.

"The guys are generous about donating their skills to people in the county," Shilling said. "Almost all of them will jump in and help. We try to get everybody involved."



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