The Brand Boys Build 

Paige Beck

Kaleb and Nolan Put Woodworking Skills to Use

The coronavirus has canceled many activities for all students, but it has also given students more free time to pick up new hobbies. The senior Brand boys, Nolan and Kaleb, have picked up the skill of building during the quarantine. 

The boys got interested in the idea after going to an iron pile over spring break with their grandparents. They each bought a tailgate, and started on their first project, a bench. They looked at some pictures, and with help from their dad, MVHS principal Steve Brand, they got to work. 

After they finished their first benches, they kept finding more projects to work on. “Over our break, Kaleb, my dad, and I have put together a total of five tailgate benches,” Nolan said. “We’ve also made a Chevrolet front end bench for a friend, and are now making a wooded bench for our grandparents and an American flag,” . 

To get supplies for their projects, the boys find free wooden pallets around town and disassemble them. Kaleb said they have acquired so much wood that they had to build storage shelves to hold all of it. “My inspiration for my next project begins at having the materials and tools to accomplish it,” said Kaleb, “I started working on crafting an American Flag because we have plenty of material to build that.” Kaleb doesn’t have a favorite piece yet, but he is looking forward to building a coffee table out of live edge boards he purchased. 

Nolan has been happy with the outcomes of his projects as well; he was especially pleased with his red Ford bench. “My favorite project was the red Ford bench which was “officially” mine,” said Nolan. The boys are satisfied with how their projects have turned out, but they have had some challenges along the way. “The most challenging has been trying to keep the hood on the front end bench that we are putting together for Brad Meester. But every project is a little different and has its own design to adapt to its differences,” said Nolan. 

“I focus on making a sturdy base and fill in the rest from there,” said Kaleb. He said his biggest challenge “is not rushing the process, and to give ourselves time to think about what would work best and also look the best.” Free time is something Kaleb does not get often because of his heavy involvement with sports all year round, so he has been taking advantage of the time off from school to build. 

Nolan has also enjoyed more time to build. “This quarantine time has been different, and it’s a great time to relax and try some different things. I definitely think we’ll keep building things for ourselves and other people. The skills we have learned will be ones that we can use for a long time,” he said. 

“The two boys and I have learned a lot, grown closer, and created some cool, unique furniture” Steve said. Even though the coronavirus took away activities from the Brand boys, they have found a new love for building for their friends and family.