GRAND RAPIDS — Local birdhouse craftsman John Guertin isn’t competing with China. He doesn’t want to. Through a love of all things nature, he’s developed a special process, collecting materials and assembling them in a way that, he believes, beats any mass-produced birdhouse or feeder coming from the Far East.
Guertin, 55, has spent the past 15 years creating new from old, prying boards from hundred-year-old Michigan barns and shaping them into Victorian-style birdhouses and newly added feeders for the business he created, Heart & Eagle Co.
John Guertin has an interesting story to tell and he’s not afraid to tell it.
One of the hardest jobs of a retailer is getting attention in the community – in a way that does not involve taking out ads in the media. John Guertin’s Heart & Eagle Company manages to do just that. The story behind his work has gotten him local, regional and national coverage and it may give you some inspiration and P.R. ideas of your own.
Guertin handcrafts birdhouses and bird feeders out of salvaged wood. Some of it came with the old Victorian house he and his wife own in Grand Rapids, Michigan, some he purchases, and a great deal of it comes from the old Patterson Barn where President Gerald Ford worked … ”
(milking cows as part of an election promise in 1948. He promised Kentwood farmers that if they
cast their votes for him and he won a seat in Congress, he’d work on the Patterson farm every morning for a fortnight.)
Click here or select *(click) the Video Image on the left side of this text to launch our Wood TV interview from December 2009.
Gerry Barnaby (WOOD TV 8, NBC affiliate) interviews John Guertin about his green project, recycling old barns (2002).