On Friday, the students are working with a tight 4:00 deadline. The ULEAF stage needs to be ready for its first public appearance at the first annual LEAF Downtown festival this weekend. We’ll be unveiling the stage at 11:30am on Saturday morning.
Today’s most critical task is the lay down the flooring. First, the floorboards are affixed to the stage using liquid nail. Next, the students work in teams pre-drilling (making a small hole for the drill) and drilling (inserting the screw) the floorboards in place.
Some of the other more pressing tasks involve reinforcing the canopy structure. After all, the stage is about to weather a weekend of breakdancing kids, drummers, and the Studio Zahiya dance troupe. Calum grinds down some gusset plates that will be reinforce the arch.
The team takes a short break at lunch. Some generous fellows brought by pizza from Earth Fare and Asheville Pizza and Brewing. Yum! Miriam also brought a pot of dirty rice.
Another important task is laying down the siding of the stage. The wing siding features lumber engraved with the names of the students, donors, volunteers, and partners who made the ULEAF possible. Some of the siding is temporary siding, because the team didn’t have enough pressure-treated wood; it will be replaced next week.
After the sidings are mounted, Lizete sands down the names. A spelling error with one of the students’ names has to be fixed – try to spot it on Saturday!
Another coat of paint is added to the metal components of the structure. All of the assembly work has added a few nicks in the paint; now is the time to correct them and even out the color.
Next week, a fiberglass seal will coat the floor. This will help protect the stage from wear and tear and prevent splinters.
One of the final tasks before the ULEAF gets picked up is to add metal trim to the edges of the stage.
The canopy is functional, but next week a few more screws will be added to hold it in place. This will keep the roof from flapping in high winds or driving down the highway.