The Brickworks Project is a major initiative by the San Juan Islands Agriculture Guild (www.sjiagguild.com) to re-purpose an historic property in the heart of Friday Harbor, San Juan Island, Washington. Situated at 150 Nichols Street in Friday Harbor and taking its name from its original role, the project most prominently includes the restoration of the original building and its re-purposing, along with an outdoor Plaza, Green and Stage, to provide a community gathering place for a variety of local food-based, educational and cultural activities and events.
The Grand Opening of the Brickworks Building on June 15, 2013 represented the culmination of a seven year journey of committed volunteers and financial supporters to realize the dream of a dedicated indoor/outdoor facility to house the San Juan Islands Farmers Market. In this capacity it now provides farmers, food purveyors and craftspeople as well as consumers – both residents and visitors – with a year-round central facility in the heart of Friday Harbor. In similar fashion, it also hosts the Friday Harbor Art Market and the new Sundays@Brickworks eclectic gatherings of craftspeople, food vendors, performance artists, etc.
The addition of a new commercially certified Community Kitchen has further enhanced what Brickworks has to offer. This addition has made the facility even more suitable for holding lunches, dinners and wedding rehearsals. These uses complement its important potential as a standalone rental facility for start-up chefs, food vendors and caterers, thus serving its additional role as a food business incubator.
In its first six months of operation, as a fully equipped facility, Brickworks hosted more than 40 one-time events for other community organizations, businesses and individuals, including meetings, workshops, forums, working lunches and celebratory dinners. Now after its first full year of completion, it has been warmly adopted, bringing new life and an even greater sense of community to a previously underdeveloped and neglected part of the Friday Harbor downtown area.
2014 promises to be an even more dynamic year, with the addition of Ag Guild hosted educational programs, the most notable of which will be its core “Live Life Well” series of lectures by renowned speakers, forums, cooking demonstrations and workshops. Last but not least, rental income from these events is anticipated to make the facility economically self-sustaining – a key Ag Guild objective.