Big Ideas builds support for program at Brown County Fair

Staff photo by Clay Schuldt Big Ideas Auction: From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday the Big Ideas, Inc. hosted a demonstration build. Starry Night Woodworkers were hard at work all day building a patio and tiki bar which were later put up for auction. The patio sold for $3,400 and the Tiki Bar went for $3,100.

NEW ULM–All day Saturday, visitors to the Brown County Fair were able to see a new idea from “Big Ideas” come to fruition.

The non-profit, Big Ideas, Inc. is an organization located in New Ulm. They work to expose learners age 13 and to the value of skilled trades through hands-on Community Education Classes.

In partnership with the Brown County Fair, Big Ideas hosted a demonstration build at the fairgrounds just north of the Pork Producers. Starry Night Woodworkers began building two outdoor living spaces: a patio with swing and a tiki bar.

The build started at 9 a.m. and went around the clock, with time for a few breaks due to the humidity.

The construction team plan to finish before 5 p.m. and was successful in meeting this goal. At 5:30 p.m. the two projects were put up for auction. The patio with swing sold for $3,400 and the tiki bar sold at $3,100.

Big Ideas representative Mary Ann Christensen said the support they had for this project was tremendous. The idea was to show people the value of the trade professions. The need for skilled trade professionals is high across the country and is a great alternative to a four-year college degree.

The trade schools will often give students the chance for hands-on training allowing them to earn while they learn.

The money earned from the auction will be split between Big Ideas and The Brown County Fair.

For more information on Big Ideas visit their website at