|Sent on:||Tuesday, January 8, 2013 2:01 PM|
I believe the chicken coop was one of the past projects, somewhere on the northside, in which the group participated. I don't know details, but I remember hearing it was a strawbale structure. I'm imagining it with a shed roof and some sort of natural plaster (as the group founder is a natural plaster person professionally.)
The current project that is in the works is a cob wall in Humboldt Park. The plan so far is a brick base-wall, maybe a few feet high, atop a packed-gravel foundation/drainage-system that is already in place. That is on hold until the weather allows for the bricks to be laid, i.e., maybe in March. The bricks, by the way, are salvaged (in the sense that they were collected at a demolition site rather than purchased.) There are nuances not mentioned that you may find appealing, and the plan does seem to evolve and solidify as the work goes on, too.
In the meantime, there's a monthly meeting on the 26th of this month (January) and the idea now is to collect phragmightee for thatch. I believe I overheard the source as being somewhere in southwest Cook County. I personally look at the trip as being mostly valuable for personal educational purposes, but I do know the group hopes to bank some thatch for a future project and I'm glad to help with that, too.
Generally any dietary concerns would probably best be mentioned with your r.s.v.p., since it seems there is almost always food involved with the meetup: noting things like vegan, wheat allergies, organic only, etc. in the comments section with the r.s.v.p. would be useful to the snack-provider. At the Oxford strawbale project there was even a fruit-only eater; he had some sort of g.i. condition.
At Oxford, the kitchen served vegetarian with vegan and glutenless options; we ate a lot of millet. The produce was mostly site-grown or locally bought; and things like goat milk was from the neighbor's goats and the cheese was from the Amish and their cows, I think. Then, too, in the second week there started the "meat club," in the parking lot, which was reportedly a ad hoc co-op of meat buyers, cookers, and eaters (as the hosts didn't provide that except on pizza night.) Of the 60-some people who showed up to that project, though, maybe two to five were from the Chicago Natural Building Group, depending on whether kids count here etc. I believe, too, that the Sundog Ohio event was also vegetarian or vegan; the Chicago group had a presence there, too, of at least a couple people. Lastly on the subject, several events relating to natural building that I have attended prior to my membership in the group have been vegetarian, too.
With regard to the group endorsing enslavement, torture, and killing of animals ( or anyone): I am not the group's official spokesperson, but I would confidently guess it does not. It's also my guess that you would encounter at the group people who share your vision in some way or another, and who would like to meet you, talk with you, and work together with you.
Thanks for sharing your ideas and concerns. Hope to see you soon.