TAUNY Halfway: Baker's Delight | St. Lawrence University Career Connections

TAUNY Halfway: Baker's Delight

Monday, July 22, 2019

TAUNY Halfway: Baker’s Delight

Izzy Rourke

So far, I have learned so much at TAUNY. I now regularly identify the many bright, whimsical barn quilts seen around the area (decorated squares of wood meant to look like a patch on a quilt that are hung on barns and the sides of houses), can call myself an aspiring baker, and have enjoyed interviewing and learning from local artists.

One of the things that I have been most excited about while interning at TAUNY has been my project. I have had the opportunity to interview multiple artists about their traditional craft. I have been visiting these artists at their homes and have been able to see their workshop and other artwork they have created. This is one of my favorite things to do because I love talking with people especially people who are so passionate about their work. I believe that compiling more information about these artists will promote their work and encourage people to support them. Having a face, a backstory, and more information about the art is an important factor in why people are choosing to buy these local products from TAUNY. Providing a platform where all this information is open to the community is essential. While gathering this information, I have had the opportunity to travel around the North Country and familiarize myself with the area which has been wonderful. I enjoy connecting with these artists and creating friendships that I can foster in the future. These artists are wonderful, kind, and generous people that create beautiful crafts and contribute to the beauty and vibrancy of the Canton community.

One of the things that has surprised me throughout this internship is how friendly people are, especially when I am baking in the kitchen. Whenever I bake in the kitchen I open up all the doors, its hot and I want people to talk to me! People will walk into the kitchen and ask me what I’m doing, encourage me to try new recipes, and tell me about their own recipes. The other day a kind man from Alaska who owns a camp in Canton shared with me a sour dough recipe passed down to him from the 1800s. The next day, he brought me a loaf that we baked together, gifted me a sour dough starter, gave me a bread making cook book, and promised me to come in later and spend an entire day teaching me how to make multiple types of bread. This generosity surprised me and made me appreciate the comradery and community in the North Country.

My baking projects have been incredibly fun. I was tasked with testing out recipes from a cook book TAUNY created and compiled called, “Good Food, Served Right”. So far, I have baked bread, many muffins, fudge, toffee squares, many cookies, whoopie pies, and more. Whoopie pies have definitely proved to be the winner so far. TAUNY’s goal is to find a product that is tasty, easy to make, and unique. They want to have more food products that are solely the TAUNY brand and a north country essential. I think this is a great idea and intends to diversify the store’s products. It has been fun to discover a new hobby for myself as well as contributing to the development and new visions TAUNY has.

TAUNY has taught me that community is essential. Empowering community members through their art, hobbies, and talents strengthens a group and draws people to it. I have learned that I enjoy interviewing people and learning about things that I didn’t consider learning about before- who knew weaving and felting were so involved and fun! I have been able to connect with a group of people that I never would have, and I am thankful for that, the artist community in Canton is full of bright, hilarious, inspired, warm, talented people. I look forward to my last month baking, talking to people, and creating new aspects to introduce in the TAUNY store.