Welcome to The Folk School of Fairbanks



Len Kamerling

Len KamerlingAlaska educator and filmmaker Len Kamerling has produced numerous critically acclaimed, award winning documentary films on Northern cultures and issues.  His film The Drums of Winter, about Yup’ik Eskimo music and dance, was named to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress in 2006.  He is Curator of Film at the University of Alaska Museum of the North, and Professor of English at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Len Kamerling has thirty years of experience as an educator and a producer of cultural media. Throughout his career he has been committed to exploring issues of cultural representation and the role that both documentary and fiction film can play in eliminating stereotypes and credibly translating one culture to another.

Natalie Ott Schuldt

Natalie Ott Schuldt

Natalie was born in Fairbanks and raised on her parents’ homestead in Salcha between the Piledriver Slough and the Tanana River. Childhood winters meant mushing and reading by gas lights, summers meant being outside more than in, and autumn meant berry picking until snow forced her inside. She has lived all over the country, including Dallas, New Orleans, and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Because the boreal forest is imprinted on her soul, she made her way back to Fairbanks and plans on staying forever. Since moving back to Alaska, she has recovered her childhood love of cross-country skiing, berry picking, and generally getting lost in the woods. She loves all things folksy and is passionate about learning how to make things by hand in the old ways. Natalie has an art degree from UAF and is a work-at-home printmaking artist and mother. She lives in Goldstream Valley with her husband Gabe and her two sons, Charlie and Ole.

Gordon Williams
Vice President and Secretary

Gordon Williams was raised in Anchorage, Alaska. He’s had a lifelong interest in the outdoors, handcrafts and building things (but makes no claims to being terribly good at them). He learned to be an avid photographer and general putterer from his father and to enjoy arts and crafts and volunteer work from his mother. After spending his college years in Massachusetts and Washington, he and his wife Leah got their first jobs in eastern Pennsylvania. After living and working there for seven years he finally got to come home to Alaska again in 2009 when he got a job as a math professor at the University of Alaska Fairbanks where he pursues his passions for pattern, symmetry and education.

Marianne Stolz

Marianne StolzMarianne Stolz was born and raised  in Germany. Her decision to pursue a career as a professional wood carver was heavily influenced by the many folkschool classes she was able to attend in her German home town. Since moving to Fairbanks in the early 90’s, Marianne started to pass on her expertise in wood work, teaching classes to children and adults. Having a “do it yourself” kind of lifestyle, she home-schools her two children. With her interest in hands-on approaches she served on the board of Calypso Farm and Ecology Center.

Bruce Campbell

Bruce CampbellBruce Campbell started cooking over a campfire in 1963. At 14, while canoeing in Northern Manitoba, the group of older teens ran out of food, took their fishing seriously, and Bruce acquired a lifelong interest in planning and creating camp meals. A master of heat control with fire, Bruce’s cooking classes explore different aspects of campfire cooking, such as Dutch Oven camp cooking and more primitive forms of cooking.

Bruce built his first canvas covered kayaks in 1966. Wooden skiffs in 1976, early 1980’s, and 2014. He is currently suffering terribly from a “need” to build a glued lap boat in the fashion described in Thomas Hill’s: “Ultralight Boatbuilding.” But before he takes on such a task, he wants to explore the process and understand it well enough to know he can complete a boat.

Michael Whalen

Michael Whalen is a professor and geologist at UAF and the Geophysical Institute. He grew up in western Pennsylvania but has lived in Fairbanks for over 20 years and loves to hike, bike, and cross-country ski. His interest in education and the outdoors drew him to The Folkschool where he hopes to make a positive contribution serving on the Board of Directors.

Randall Rozier

Randall Rozier, an Architect in Fairbanks, grew up in Salcha spending most of his childhood building upon and exploring the banks of the Tanana River. After a brief stint out of state tromping around and pursuing an education he landed back in Fairbanks to pursue a career. Randall’s continued interest in the combination of the outdoors and local education opportunities drew him towards The Folk School of Fairbanks. Randall and his wife Brittany are more often outside than in, engaging in making the interior community their home, and ever exploring opportunities to learn.   

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Upcoming Events

5:00 pm Private Event
Private Event
Sep 21 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Private Event @ The Folk School | Fairbanks | Alaska | United States
Private Event This event is not open to the public. If you would like to rent the Folk School space for a private party or event, please contact us at info@thefolkschoolfairbanks.org or 907-451-0445! Visit our[...]
4:45 pm Adventures in Woodworking II (ag...
Adventures in Woodworking II (ag...
Sep 26 @ 4:45 pm – 6:45 pm
Adventures in Woodworking II (ages 11-14) @ The Folk School | Fairbanks | Alaska | United States
Adventures in Woodworking II – (ages 11-14) – (12 session class) Instructor: John Manthei The goal of this program (in addition to having fun making cool stuff) will be to develop proficiency in a wide[...]
4:00 pm Adventures in Woodworking I (age...
Adventures in Woodworking I (age...
Sep 27 @ 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm
Adventures in Woodworking I (ages 8-10) @ The Folk School | Fairbanks | Alaska | United States
Adventures in Woodworking I – (ages 8-10) – (12 session class) Instructor:  John Manthei Adventures in Woodworking I is designed to expose young students to the most basic principles of working with wood and the[...]
12:00 pm Build Your Own Pack Raft from a Kit
Build Your Own Pack Raft from a Kit
Sep 30 @ 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Build Your Own Pack Raft from a Kit @ The Folk School | Fairbanks | Alaska | United States
Build Your Own Pack Raft from a Kit Instructor: Bruce Campbell Build your own lightweight Pack Raft that you order from a DIY Pack Raft Kit. (Or, finish a raft you have started!) Pack rafting[...]
10:00 am Volunteer Day – Spruce Up The Fo...
Volunteer Day – Spruce Up The Fo...
Oct 1 @ 10:00 am – 3:00 pm
Volunteer Day – Spruce Up The Folk School! Sunday, October 1st, will be a much needed volunteer day at The Folk School. If you have a little time that day and would like to join[...]
9:00 am Principles of Woodworking
Principles of Woodworking
Oct 2 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Principles of Woodworking @ The Folk School | Fairbanks | Alaska | United States
Principles of Woodworking – ongoing class Instructor: John Manthei   This is an ongoing program in which we explore all aspects of woodworking from the most elementary to extremely complex. The idea is to try[...]