Wānaka Community Workshop News

  • New digs for tiger worms

    New digs for tiger worms

    Feels like winter is now well on its way. Its not only humans who feel the effects, the tiger worms at the Wanaka Community Gardens slow down as well. This time around the MenShed team at the Wanaka Community Workshop aim to make life for the worms just a little easier with new accommodation. The…

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  • Tidy kids

    Tidy kids

    Its great to reinforce the value of recycling. Using timber and materials donated by our local construction sector this week the MenShed team completed a run of “tidy’s” for our local Primary School. The “run” was quite large, enough for three classes of kids. Each “Tidy” is a simple wooden box. Each will provide a…

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  • Winter is comming

    Winter is comming

    Grow Wanaka is our district’s community garden – and more – teaching folk how to grow food in the dry and the cold. The garden and the people who volunteer to create and manage it are significant assets for our community – get to the Outlet and have a look for yourself. This week the…

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  • Kids at play

    Kids at play

    Every so often the “kid” emerges from our MenShed team members. What emerged this week was a toy garage. Something for the grandchild to play with. Built from recycled timber and modelled from a photograph found on the web lets hope the toy lasts for years. That said the 2 year old for which it…

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  • Lilliput library for The Hub

    Lilliput library for The Hub

    The network of small informal book exchanges serving communities across the Upper Clutha continues to grow. Called Lilliput Libraries each is managed by a local community group, business or household. The MenShed team at the Wanaka Community Workshop have used recycled materials to build many, most have two doors but some, slightly smaller, have a…

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  • Piloting tape dispenser

    Piloting tape dispenser

    Recently the principal of one of our local primary schools paid a visit to the Wanaka Community Workshop. It seems there was trouble when the kids were using sticky tape. I am sure each of us have struggled to find the “end” on the roll or managed to turn the tape such that it simply…

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  • From good to great

    From good to great

    The MenShed team like to think of themselves creating good stuff. But that is nothing compared to what others create building on the foundation we have provided. This week taking advantage of a sunny autumnal afternoon a corn hole board was being recreated as art. Some paint, inspiration and skill can make a real difference.…

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  • Heavy duty traps for Fiordland

    Heavy duty traps for Fiordland

    This week the MenShed team completed production of a run of large “double end” traps. Each trap contains not one but two DOC200 mechanisms. The traps are built tough – stainless steel and with features to ensure hat Kea and Weka cannot find their way inside. The traps need to be tough – they are…

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  • Splashes of colour

    Splashes of colour

    The generosity of the Upper Clutha community never ceases to amaze. This week the team at Fabricate have been busy working through recent donations of cloth and textiles. The material is in demand being upcycled and used as raw material to create new items of clothing as well as blankets and throws. With winter imminent…

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  • An aspiring pantry

    An aspiring pantry

    The MenShed team this week delivered a pantry to the Aspiring Beginnings Early Learning Centre. At the Centre the kids are learning the grow vegetables. The pantry will enable the vege’s to be displayed to Mum’s and Dad’s who can pick them up and continue the learning at home by creating meals with their kids.…

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  • Van upgrades

    Van upgrades

    Wanaka hosts visitors from around the world. Many are here for weeks or months seeking work to support their journey. Van’s are popular among visitors given that they provide both transport and accommodation. The Wanaka Community Workshop is increasingly attracting visitors seeking to use the facilities and tools to refurbish and upgrade their vans. With…

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  • Safe kit thanks to Aotea Electric

    Safe kit thanks to Aotea Electric

    Much of our work at the Wanaka Community Workshop is undertaken with powered tools and equipment. These rang from large table saws through sewing machines to small tools such as drills. The safe use of electricity is associated with a annual check – this involves testing the machine then attaching a tag indicating all is…

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  • Repair Revolution

    Repair Revolution

    This week the Wanaka Community Workshop hosted the Repair Revolution. The Repair Revolution is a program managed by Wastebusters. It provides an opportunity for people to bring along household items to be repaired and returned to use. Repair is a more sustainable and cheaper alternative to disposing the item and purchasing a replacement. The Wanaka…

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  • Too few candles?

    Too few candles?

    The MenShed team gather at the Wanaka Community Workshop every Tuesday and Thursday mornings. The team spend most of their time together building projects which meet the needs of community agencies across the Upper Clutha. However the team also enjoy each others company. At every session we take the opportunity to share some kai and…

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  • Viking tables and chairs

    Viking tables and chairs

    Recent weeks have seen the MenShed team re-cycle a host of wooden planks previously used for scaffolding in our local construction sector. The planks have reached the end of their useful life as scaffolding. They are perfect for creating outdoor tables and seating. The design is reflective of what the Vikings may have created –…

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  • Cots for kids

    Cots for kids

    Every so often a project walks in the door at the Wanaka Community Workshop. This time the project involved a couple of toy cots. Both were suffering from the impact of a six year old using them as a bed – joints pulled apart and a few broken elements. Thanks to the skills of a…

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  • Jan – March 2024 Activity Report

    Jan – March 2024 Activity Report

    The first quarter of 2023 has been busy, very busy at the Wanaka Community Workshop. MenShed Throughout the period the MenShed team came together to work on a range of community projects every Tuesday and Thursday morning. Attendance totaled 332 representing 1,162 hours of volunteer effort – 7.2 full time equivalents over the period. No…

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  • DOC trap production

    DOC trap production

    The MenShed team at the Wanaka Community Workshop are currently busy producing a range of DOC 200 traps. Each is destined for a local business or community group who will deploy the traps to protect endangered species from pests such as stoats and rats. The traps are designed to kill pests yet ensure inquisitive birds…

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  • Foundation for light engineering

    Foundation for light engineering

    With the creation of a foundation for our metal work table the capacity of the Wanaka Community Workshop to undertake welding and light engineering took a step forward this week. The relocation of our work table to a more convenient location adjacent to the Workshop comes shortly after our initial training in the use of…

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  • Seed to seedling

    Seed to seedling

    Teaching kids about the value of plants and the practical aspects of growing food is something we should all encourage. This week the MenShed team at the Wanaka Community Workshop have been completing two large “seedling tables” for a local school. The tables will provide the foundation for kids getting their seeds started before the…

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  • Light engineering

    Light engineering

    The wood workshop and Fabrication, our textile workshop are the two key elements of the Wanaka Community Workshop. That said the MenShed team who normally spend their time in the wood workshop are keen to establish a capacity to undertake light engineering. A table suitable for working with metal has been built. This week the…

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  • Importance of wellbeing

    Importance of wellbeing

    The Wanaka Community Workshop is itself a community. It is an important outcome that members enjoy each others company, are valued and are able to contribute. This week following a training session focused upon light engineering and welding the MenShed team got together for lunch. Sharing kai is a great way to catch up and…

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  • Production stages

    Production stages

    Upper Clutha is know for outdoor sports but we know the arts are key to the great lifestyle we in our community enjoys. Over recent weeks the MenShed Team at the Wanaka Community Workshop have designed and built a series of mobile stages. The stages will be used by students at Mt Aspiring College for…

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  • Seats for Skater’s

    Seats for Skater’s

    It is great kids across the Upper Clutha are active. Our district is crammed full of outdoor opportunity. From time to time even the most active need to take a break. This week the MenShed team at the Wanaka Community Workshop completed three solid and rather rustic seats to provide a resting opportunity for kids…

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  • Fabrication of throwing bags

    Fabrication of throwing bags

    The Fabricate and MenShed teams at the Wanaka Community Workshop this week completed a joint project resulting in the production of popular Corn Hole Game sets. “Its great to work on a project together” said Sue, a volunteer from Fabricate. “Each game set comes with eight throw bags filled with clean river”. The game sets…

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  • Sorting tools

    Sorting tools

    The Wanaka Community Workshop is a busy place. In order to get stuff built the Workshop is equipped with a wide range of tools. It may surprise folk but from time to time the Workshop is untidy – messy even. This week members of the MenShed team are working to put things right. New shelving…

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  • Production of traps accelerated

    Production of traps accelerated

    Across the Upper Clutha families and environmental groups are working hard to manage down predators that threaten our iconic wildlife. Much of this work relies on effective trapping. The MenShed Team at the Wanaka Community Workshop are supporting this work building traps – lots of traps. Over recent weeks our store of traps has reduced…

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  • A new doggie icon

    A new doggie icon

    Given the popularity of our initial Doggie Stick Library the MenShed team have completed a second. The new Library is located adjacent to the lakeside track leading to the Wanaka Tree. The library has already featured on social media. Given the number of folk taking photo’s of their library with their dog or just selfies,…

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  • Getting vans ready to occupy

    Getting vans ready to occupy

    Every year the Upper Clutha community hosts thousands of overseas visitors. Many are long term visitors to New Zealand who convert vans in order to freedom camp throughout the nation. The Wanaka Community Workshop regularly hosts such travelers who are seeking to upgrade their vans with beds, storage, kitchen and toilet facilities. Summer is our…

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  • Organizers for Wānaka’s Take Karera School

    Organizers for Wānaka’s Take Karera School

    Schools need to be organised and the busyness of a primary school meant the cardboard boxes that were being used by Estelle and the team at Take Karera Primary School were frequently wearing out. We offered to help out and have now made 40 x 4 litre Small Parts Boxes, 2 x Compartment Lego Boxes,…

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  • Anyone for Cornhole

    Anyone for Cornhole

    This week the team at the MenShed have been busy building corn hole game boards. We built our first board over a year ago. In response to demand from households, firms and community groups our team has been regularly producing corn hole game boards. Its a great game and its always satisfying seeing folk enjoying…

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  • Beach toy repairs

    Beach toy repairs

    Wanaka is busy – hosting an average of 18,000 visitors daily during our peak visitor season. Many of our visitors are kids who have been making great use of the Beach Toy Library located on the lakefront near the Water Sports Facility. As a result a number of the wooden toys built by the MenShed…

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  • Minaret Peak wine

    Minaret Peak wine

    Every so often the MenShed team at the Wanaka Community Workshop get the opportunity to support local business. The funds raised go toward meeting our operational costs such as electricity. The Upper Clutha is home to a highly regarded wine sector. Minaret Peak is a long standing wine grower of our region. This week the…

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  • New lilliput library open

    New lilliput library open

    Over the last couple of years the MenShed team operating from the Wanaka Community Workshop have built Lilliput Libraries. Today these libraries serve local communities throughout Wanaka as well as Lake Hawea and Luggate. This week the most recent addition to the network is ready to open. The lilliput library is located within the Wanaka…

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  • All action at the Workshop

    All action at the Workshop

    This week members of the MenShed welcomed kids participating in the holiday program managed by the Wanaka Recreation Centre. We had prepared for the visit by fabricating components of wooden crates ready for assembly. The kids used a simple jig to complete the job with some precise (and not so precise) hammering. Its great to…

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  • Community delivers

    Community delivers

    The Wanaka Community Workshop is part of our community here in Upper Clutha. We often see real evidence of the support of our community through the donation of building materials, plant and equipment. This week members of the MenShed team have collected (and will soon sort) power and hand tools, equipment as well as a…

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  • Doggie refreshment station

    Doggie refreshment station

    Summer across the Upper Clutha is hot and dry. Dry for humans and dry for dogs. A keen cyclist visiting the region decided to do something about the problem. Do something for the dogs who accompany their owners when biking the trails in Sticky Forest. The stand was quickly created using recycled materials at the…

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  • Last quarter 2023 activities

    Last quarter 2023 activities

    The last quarter of 2023 has been a busy and successful period at the Wanaka Community Workshop. Volunteer/Wo(Men)Shed Sessions – Wood working Our Volunteer sessions continue to be vibrant and the core of the Community Workshop. Average attendance by the MenShed team who as advertised in local media gather each Tuesday and Thursday mornings at…

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  • MINT Christmas Project

    MINT Christmas Project

    This week the Workshop welcomed the crew from MINT. While MINT are regular users of the Workshop their December visit was special – a get together with a Christmas focus. With the support of MenShed members this month’s project was a “organic” Christmas Tree largely build from driftwood collected around the lake shore. The crew…

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  • Mud kitchen in action

    Mud kitchen in action

    This week members of the MenShed team were invited for morning tea at Kids First – a pre school located at Hawea Flat. Recently the team delivered a second mud kitchen for use by the kids as play equipment. The two mud kitchens (one with a stove!) followed a couple of built up gardens where…

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  • Spinning for Volunteers

    Spinning for Volunteers

    Volunteering is a way of life across the Upper Clutha. Many people across our community contribute through giving their time to activities which make our community strong – culture & arts, sports & recreation, spiritual, the natural environment and others who just need a helping hand. Volunteer South is a local agency which works to…

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  • Signs for Te Kakano

    Signs for Te Kakano

    Te Kākano Aotearoa Trust is a Wānaka non-profit organisation that is making a difference for our natural environment. The Trust eco-sources seeds from the Upper Clutha area, raises seedlings in their nursery, and then facilitates community-based native planting and habitat restoration. They do a great job. This week the MenShed Team made a small contribution…

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  • Christmas at the Workshop

    Christmas at the Workshop

    Christmas is a time for family and friends together. This week the team who regularly get together at the Wanaka Community Workshop 2023 met at the workshop to celebrate Christmas. Wellbeing is important for all. While we love designing and building stuff for our community we also enjoy each others company. Christmas is a time…

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  • Puteketeke, Making a Difference

    Puteketeke, Making a Difference

    The MenShed team build traps at the Wanaka Community Workshop – lots of traps. Every day the traps are doing their work protecting our natural environment across the Upper Clutha. Some are located along the shoreline of Lake Wanaka protecting our iconic Puteketeke – the Australasian Crested Grebe, as they lay eggs and raise their…

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  • Furoshiki Fabric Gift Wrapping Workshop – Christmas 2023

    Furoshiki Fabric Gift Wrapping Workshop – Christmas 2023

    Come along to Fabricate for a Furoshiki fabric gift wrapping workshop, just in time for Christmas! You can wrap anything using just a bit of fabric. Best part is you can use the fabric over and over again. No sellotape or ribbons required..  All proceeds donated to Wānaka Community Networks/LINK for the community Xmas hampers…

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  • Viking Table

    Viking Table

    We’re still working through our big stack of Scaffold Planks from Bramwell Scaffolding (big thanks to those guys). This week the team are creating a large table and benches for customers of the food caravan out the front of the Workshop at 15 Gordon Road. Gillian and Donelle picked this project up and have had…

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  • A library for Kirimoko

    A library for Kirimoko

    This week the MenShed Team erected the regions latest Lilliput Library. Built from recycled materials and painted by a local artist the library will serve the Kirimoko community off Aubrey Road in Wanaka. If the number of local adults and kids, who stopped on their way to school and work when the library was being…

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  • Doggie stick library

    Doggie stick library

    The MenShed team have introduced a new service to Wanaka – a Doggie Stick Library. The idea is a bit quirky but was thought to be a great fit for Wanaka. Built from recycled materials the library has been placed in Bremner Bay. The library provides for “classic” sticks named after “Spot”, “Hercules Morse” and…

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  • Hayes Engineering Works

    Hayes Engineering Works

    This month the MenShed Team from the Wanaka Community Workshop took some time out and visited the historic Hayes engineering shop at Oturehua. Coffee and a tour displaying how the water and wind powered machinery of the 1920’s worked. What’s not to like! The team love to gather each week at the Wanaka Community Workshop.…

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  • Triangle tables

    Triangle tables

    This week the MenShed team completed two outdoor tables. Both were built from recycled materials which had been previously used in the construction sector. The tables were unusual being designed as a pair to fit adjacent to a curved wall. As a result each has three legs! It sounds unusual but it works. The tables…

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Got any book recommendations?