Sandisfield OKs wood-working school, but plans now on hold

SANDISFIELD — A proposed school in traditional handcraft woodworking has received a special permit from the Select Board, but plans for further development are on hold until the spring.

Following an August presentation by craftsman and resident Kevin Kiwak on how his Knodding Head School at 3 Sears Road would look and operate, the board unanimously granted the school a special permit to satisfy Sandisfield's zoning requirements.

Kiwak said Tuesday said he has had to put the plans "on hold" for financial reasons. He plans to revisit the idea in the spring.

The project was first proposed to the town in August when the Select Board opened a public hearing on Kiwak's application. He had submitted preliminary plans with the town, and also had been before the Planning Board in October to discuss zoning.

But plans hit a snag shortly after that, and Kiwak canceled his business registration with the state.

The school Kiwak has suggested would have been built on 2 acres of his 170-acre residential property on Sears Road.

He envisioned holding classes of six to eight students. Programs would run anywhere from one day to a week, and cover projects like wood carving, bowl making, how to use a pole lathe, and stonewall building, according to documents filed with the town.

Kiwak has been teaching part-time at the Heartwood woodworking school in Becket for years.

Contact Kristin Palpini at and @kristinpalpini on Twitter.


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