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We had a wonderful week with 8 volunteers coming from Goshen/Elkhart, Indiana area and 13 from Greenwich/Shiloh, Ohio area.  We had a total of 28, including long term volunteers, which kept our cooks busy.   

Our teams worked on two different properties.  One group worked at Billie’s house and within the week had it almost completed except for a couple finishing touches.  The same was true with Jamie’s house.  The crews worked on siding and trim, caulking and painting, as well as replacing windows.  Both houses look really nice, and everyone felt good about it after their hard work. 

The weather this week was cool and sunny mixed with clouds, except for Tuesday when the clouds opened up and it stormed.  We were stranded at the MDS building so we got together and worked on helping to finish the bathrooms at the main lodging site for MDS.  We couldn’t all work in such tight quarters, so we arranged for a tour of the Red Lake Walleye Processing Plant.  We split in half so the work could continue, and everyone had a chance to go.  It was quite interesting and fragrant!  The walleye are caught in Red Lake, which is the sixth largest lake in the United States.  From here they are shipped all around the world.  They process about 1 million tons of fish a year.  That’s a lot of fish! 

We also saw several black bears during the week and one night a bear dined in our dumpster that is right behind the building.  We saw evidence of his invasion strewn all over the back of the building the following morning. 

Wednesday we were excited to have two local women who work for the Red Lake Indian Nation, Liz & Sarah and Liz’s son Jax come and have dinner with us.  After dinner they both shared about their culture and customs, and they asked us lots of questions about our culture and customs.  Jax sang and did a dance for our group which we all enjoyed.  They were probably the highlight of our week. 

In the evenings some put puzzles together, some played volleyball, and some looked at the beautiful sunsets over the lake.  We learned lots about each other as the week progressed.  Then came Friday, our finish up and clean up day.  Everyone pitched in and we said goodbye.  Part of our group left on Friday night and the rest left early Saturday morning to get a head start home. 


Judy Bird for the Red Lake Team 

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