Home > Art, Eureka California > Logger Project

Logger Project

[From Sanctuary Stage]

Sanctuary Stage is producing our Loggers of the Pacific Northwest Cycle, original plays spanning three states and focus on the lives of loggers and their families.

The original plays are regionally specific, and each developed through a community-engaged play-making process with the help of local residents, historians, and logging families. These projects are a celebration and exploration of the logger told through an original score and stories that shape each play. We wish to capture a glimpse of the history, day-to-day lives, and experiences of the men and women who call themselves loggers.


Friday June 3 at 8 p.m.
Saturday June at 7p.m.
Sunday June 5 at 7pm.

Admission is $10 or Pay-what-you-can.

Blue Ox Mill Works and Historic Park is located at the corner of 1 Street and X Street in Eureka just off the Bay.

For more information about The Logger Project please contact: Sanctuary Stage Productions on the web at sanctuarystage.com or Artistic Director, Tinamarie Ivey 707-601-1656. To learn more about Blue Ox visit blueoxmill.com.

  1. 69er
    June 2, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    This should be great and interesting. Logging is the reason I found myself in Eureka many years ago. Dad brought the family here to log the mighty Redwoods. Worked for Dolbeer and Carson, out Elk River way.

  2. Bob
    June 2, 2011 at 10:35 pm

    Worth noting: The play is a musical written by Jackie Dandeneau of the Arcata Playhouse and The Brendas. The Bucky Walters sing a few original songs by Jackie and a couple of logger numbers originally done by The Singing Logger, Buzz Martin. The Buckys also act in the piece.

  3. Anonymous
    June 2, 2011 at 10:58 pm

    Unless this musical includes scenes about how our livelihoods and levels of consumption have devastated landscapes, caused mudslides, silted miles of rivers, poisoned aquifers, disappeared most ancient forests, and ushered-in the sixth largest extinction event on Earth…it’s mostly irrelevant, just like today’s media, movies and “news”.

    The biggest rule in nature is “change to survive”, but change requires knowledge of the need to do so.

    How many times following the worst atrocities in human history have we heard a regretful people proclaim: “but, we didn’t know”…

  4. Decline To State
    June 3, 2011 at 6:11 am

    Anonymous @ 10:58 I suggest that you don’t attend the play. This one wasn’t written for you.

    I’ve spent 37 years in the timber industry, 25 of them in Humboldt County and I offered some of my memories to the creators. These performances should be unique and interesting (to those of us open to it).

  5. Bolithio
    June 3, 2011 at 7:35 am

    Cool! I hope I can make it.

    10:58: “mostly irrelevant” must be your middle name. Put down your pamphlet and get educated about whats really going on.

  6. Anonymous
    June 3, 2011 at 11:20 am

    bolithio says: Put down your pamphlet and pick up mine instead. And oh yeah I work for the logging industry.

  7. Anonymous
    June 3, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    We’re all spending our lives self-deceived of the impacts we’re having on this planet, to varying degrees.

    But that hardly excuses the worst offenders, let alone, romanticizing them in a musical! (The same reason they stopped making cowboy and Indian movies so long ago).

    Will the musical include the famous rural legend of big-timber’s lobbying efforts to stop construction of the SF Bridge after realizing that more tourists would mean more witnesses to the carnage?

    They were right.

    Buy a ticket?

    I would sponsor any play or musical that tells the whole story.

  8. Ed
    June 3, 2011 at 2:46 pm

    As someone who works with wood on a daily basis, I greatly appreciate the effort it takes to get lumber to the marketplace. That said, the examples of resource extraction have been routinely negative for the ideal of sustainability. This is true for all our resources, farming,fishing, logging, mining, all have their historic heroes, and their lobbyists have been very successful in maintaining the notion that they can do no wrong. My hat’s off to those who care enough about their country and community to do the right thing.

  9. Anonymous
    June 3, 2011 at 10:34 pm

    Romanticizing the high-flying days of maximum resource extraction is not the “right thing.”

  10. June 3, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    We went to see The Logger Project tonight. It’s a fantastic example of community-engaged theater and is really well done. It’s also a fun environment – performed outside with hay bales for seats and a fire burning in the pit. The audience tonight was filled with logging families, most of whom I assume, were part of the process of creating the script. They seemed to enjoy it a lot too. Word of warning, though: the mosquitoes are vicious.

  11. Bolithio
    June 4, 2011 at 8:04 am

    Romanticizing the high-flying days of maximum resource extraction is not the “right thing.”

    Ya, and lets not tell stories about war either. Or the pioneer era of America. Or any history for that matter.

    Behind all stories, are people. Regardless of our views of the past, the people behind the stories are just like you and me. The historic era of logging led to environmental impacts. It also took 100 years to understand that as a people. Today, logging practices dont cause the harm of the past – but the people who risk their lives to provide resources for the nation are the same – and their story is one to be told.

    June 4, 2011 at 8:23 am


    that makes 2 of us. Anyhow, remember when Pacific Lumber changed owners. Employee’s said company was running sustainably, then neweer owner (old man Charles H.) decided to gut the forrests to “pay-down” his financial sector debts as they were connected like a choo choo train without good tracks to rail on ……kinda like the current state of affairs with the R/R in Humboldt County – DEFUNCT.


  13. Toohey
    June 4, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Would a play about the pot growers be more acceptable? The play could romanticize the rip-offs, the shootings, the paranoia, the burned houses and the final end of the golden age of pot with legalization. It could be written as a tragic comedy.

  14. Not A Native
    June 4, 2011 at 10:30 am

    I understand the appeal and sentiment of this, but to me its essentially a tent revival for stump worshipers.

    Some history is more properly left uncelebrated(but not forgotten), simply because it was a mistake and is now regretted. I thnk Kristabel’s comment was most illuminating, the attendees are comprised of those who put the show together, they came to see themselves. Just as school plays are largely attended by the families and friends of the performing children. The general public is uninterested.

    From an social/economic perspective, as time goes on, fewer and fewer people will support this kind of events and they both will disappear from the scene.

  15. Anonymous
    June 4, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    My guess is that NAN is not a fan of Ax Men on cable.

  16. Anonymous
    June 4, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    Yeah NAN there won’t be forests to cut because the urban yups and growers will have subdivided the whole thing. But they are are sooo green they will import wood from Siberia and Canada.

  17. June 4, 2011 at 10:10 pm

    I said the audience was filled with logging families, NAN, but it was also filled with a large number of people from many other segments of our community. I don’t come from a logging family, but like Bolithio, I believe stories from the people who lived it are important to understand the history and culture of a place, regardless of my feelings about that history and culture.

    Sanctuary Stage probably shouldn’t have used the word “celebrate” in their copy. It’s not really an accurate description of the performance.

  18. The Big Picture
    June 5, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    I agree with NAN.

    There’s no relevance when lives are portrayed outside the larger context.

    Same as those old cowboy movies that now disgust us.

  19. Steak n Eggs
    June 5, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    My Family sailed across the continent from New Zealand and ended up in Ferndale in the early 1800s to log, farm, and fish. They resided in small logging camps such as Falk and Crannell.

    Follow your family tree far enough back and you will be surprised to find that our ancestors had much more in common with each other than you would like to believe. Celebrate and appreciate what they did in order to have made it possible for us to be here today.

    NAN…sorry to say but you wouldn’t have made it.

  20. Walt
    June 5, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    “My family sailed across the continent from New Zealand. . .” In a “prairie schooner”?

  21. Not A Native
    June 5, 2011 at 5:53 pm

    Steak and Eggs. Sorry to inform you, but I have made it. I’m here, while most progeny of 1950’s and prior loggers aren’t. Your boy Arkley brags on himself that he’s ‘the last man standing’. Seems to me, being an anachronism is nothing to be proud of.

  22. Ross Rowley
    June 5, 2011 at 6:15 pm

    Not A Native,

    I understand why you dislike the timber industry, but why do you so dislike and are disrespectful of the men and women who worked and still work in that field?

  23. Not A Native
    June 5, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    Look Ross, I’ve written here that I promote local history being remembered, not forgottn. So of course that has to include remembering the historical personalities, as best they are known.

    What I oppose is glorifying(or villifying) aspects of the history. The sweep of the history here is great efforts by immigrants learning to survive and prosper, and their causing untoward destruction of the environment. Both of those things are undisputed facts. Although history interpretations and emphasis will vary, both those facts need to be kept in the forefront of any historical perspective for me to consider it legitimate.

    And Ross, just how in your mind do your differentiate the timber ‘industry’ from the ‘men and women who worked and still work in that field’? I don’t feel disrespect for people who act with respect, humbleness, modesty, restraint, and knowledge when they engage in logging. I have a problem only with those who don’t.

  24. mresquan
    June 5, 2011 at 8:19 pm

    “just how in your mind do your differentiate the timber ‘industry’ from the ‘men and women who worked and still work in that field’?”

    The mills were and are still out for mass profit,loggers were out for sustainability in logging,for both the environment and the future of the industry.Well,for the most part.The Logger Project most certainly did not glorify anything about the mills and the clear cutting.

  25. Bolithio
    June 5, 2011 at 8:34 pm

    undisputed facts

    Of course. We all hold to our narratives in life. In mine, I have separated the worker from the fat cat, the past from the present, and accept the reality of humanity. Pollution is a debt we all must pay.

    Logging is nothing like it was, nor our understanding of science and the natural world. Greed obviously still exists, but that fact doesn’t mean making a living is all avarice. I will raise my glass to all working people, regardless of how the fat cat has behaved – because that isn’t us. Even in the face of the greed of today – the worker continues to provide for all. That is worth celebrating. Its all we have.

  26. Ross Rowley
    June 5, 2011 at 10:04 pm

    Thank you Bolithio for your comment. We just attended the Logger Project tonight and there were WAY more cars with bumper stickers with an environmental bent messages on them then Ford-F250’s with bar oil and wedges in the back. When asked, only two loggers graced the audience, so it wasn’t a tent revival for stump worshipers as earlier thought. It was by and large a musical theatrical performance based on the life of men who worked in the woods, their wives and daily adventures. A slice of one aspect of Pacific Northwest life past and present.

  27. Not A Native
    June 5, 2011 at 10:18 pm

    mresquan, clearcutting is common current practice, workers are curently clearcutting, and THPs calling for clearcutting are being filed and approved.

    Bolitho’s rosy ‘we’re all better now’ just isn’t reality, yet. The people who implement bad practices bear some of the responsibility along with those who direct bad practices. In criminal law, aiding and abetting is an offense as is ‘giving comfort to an adversary’ in an armed conflict.

  28. The Big Picture
    June 8, 2011 at 12:28 am

    Thanks for the clear thought NAN.

    The environmentalists were also “workin men” distinguished by their vindication long ago. This musical is a salve for the conscience of the few that remain, while most took their high-pay and skedaddled before the collapse that follows every looting.

  29. Anonymous
    June 13, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    check it out and decide for yourselves http://www.archive.org/details/AH-The_Logger_Project

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