Nolan Gorg attended Makers Mill orientation in October of 2022 and was immediately drawn in by the sandblaster he found beckoning to him from this inviting new workspace. His reaction? “I have to get to that sandblaster.” And so he did.
Nolan is presently a highly active member of Makers Mill who spends about eight hours a day circulating and supporting others in the metal shop, which he helped setup and continues to monitor and further develop. Nolan affirms that he can help direct any learner from the community who comes into the Mill seeking support. “We are open to anyone. I am there to circulate and help. I can help people read the machines and use them effectively.”
Nolan is originally from Oregon and admits he was “dragged” here to the Lakes Region by his parents. Although he has now been in the area for nine years, he reports that he is still adapting to this new setting. “I don’t yet feel at home here. Don’t quite feel settled. You have to know people. There are no websites here. You can only learn about what it means to be here through contact and interaction with others.” This is a process in which Nolan is deeply engaged.
Nolan is now thirty-two years old and affirms that he is a “self-taught” individual who was home-schooled. He also notes that he has “moved around a lot” in his life. However, now he affirms that he is committed to settling in. “I am not going anywhere.”
His connection to the metal shop at Makers Mill is deeply grounded in his determination to see it fully equipped and highly functional.
Nolan’s favorite season here is winter. He feels it is “too buggy” in the fall. For him, winter brings “good moons,” three to four times brighter than anywhere else he has lived.
Nolan affirms that he has had an “incredibly busy life.” His hobbies, including video games, keep him ”very busy.” Additionally, he loves making balloon animals. “I love making anything that is three-dimensional.”
Nolan is also committed to a vegan diet. “I love the vegan diet. I come from a culinary family. I cook. Cooking and candy making and video games are my hobbies.”
Nolan does admit that his one problem with Makers Mill is that he is not normally an early riser. Getting up early is a problem. However, he is now meeting the “early riser requirement” and spending eight hours a day in the metal shop, helping, creating, and responding to needs and demands as they arise.
Nolan celebrates the fact that the Metal Shop has already had a positive impact on the larger community. “A couple of bikes are already moving around the area, thanks to the Metal Shop.”
Nolan takes great satisfaction from the many projects and his creative investment of time and energy at the Mill. “In the Repair Cafe, participants have produced a working toaster and a stained glass panel.”
The activities at the Mill are challenging, exciting, and gratifying for Nolan. In summarizing his participation at the Mill, Nolan asserts that just having this set-up is amazing. “We now have a great grant coming in. It’s like giving to get. I am looking for opportunities for learning and helping solve problems. I like learning. I want to have a positive impact.”