I've always assumed that I have some ancestor from hundreds or thousands of years ago who made their living as a blacksmith - that's where the last name "Smith" typically comes from, because back then, people's jobs were their identities. If you were a blacksmith, your name was Mike Smith. If you were a butler, your name would be Jim Butler. If you were an athlete, your name was Tom A. Thlete - and so on.

So it might be a cool thing to check this out and see if I have any natural blacksmithing talent somewhere in my DNA - a Missoula artist is giving away free blacksmith lessons from the back of a tricycle.

KPAX has the story, and they talk to local artist Jesse Blumenthal about his project, the Tricycle Forge Blacksmith School. With the support and funding from organizations like the Montana Arts Council and the National Endowment of the Arts, Blumenthal was able to put a forge onto the back of an electric tricycle - with all the weight of the anvil and the tools, the tricycle weighs almost 1000 pounds.

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The plan for Blumenthal right now is to continue popping up with the mobile blacksmith school throughout Missoula for a couple of months (he just recently spent some time at the ZACC last week), and then eventually take it on the road to other Montana cities, most likely in the spring.

So if you're walking around town and you see Blumenthal and the Tricycle Forge Blacksmith School - check it out! It's totally free and you could pick up a couple of new skills along the way.

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