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From the Editor

I love this time of year! Spring is in the air during the early and late parts of the day, with the summer heat coming on strong in the afternoon. The birds create a melodious chorus outside your window, and the plants are in full bloom. Baseball season is in full swing, and I just can't wait to have that big family barbecue and watch the NASCAR race over Memorial Day weekend. But best of all, the MCAA International Excellence in Masonry Awards are announced, and we get to see a collection of some of the best masonry projects in the world.

Just as they have in years prior, the award winners not only exhibit excellence in masonry craftsmanship and design, but also meticulous forethought and ingenuity, exceptional foremanship, superior attention to color and texture, and an awesome array of details executed to the finest degree.

Here are a few examples of just that:

  • The Eastmont Junior High School by Spilker Masonry Company was constructed to meld in texture, color and pattern with the surrounding basalt cliffs of the East Wenatchee Valley.

  • Brazos Masonry, Inc., coordinated 96 on-site employees working on frame, suspension and mast-climbing scaffolding systems and a boatswain's chair to construct the Baylor University Sciences Building.

  • When the YWCA decided to use art to enhance its Opportunity Place project, J&S Masonry, Inc., participated by laying units of different colors in "YW" and "CA" patterns at the top and bottom of brick pilasters.

  • Serpanok Construction brought together split-face CMU, ground-face CMU and red brick masonry for the large-scale Mount Tahoma High School.

  • Leonard Masonry installed masonry for the top of the bell tower on the ground before it was lifted to its final height of 126 feet to complete the Our Lady of Lourdes project.

  • The Terry House for Woodberry Forest School implements a Flemish Bond pattern, recessed accent bands and water table reveals by M3, Inc.

  • Sparten Masonry Group, Inc., created seamless interior CMU walls that were covered with mortar, and then sanded and painted to look like dry wall for the Trinity Women's and Girls' Athletic Facility.

  • And alternating depths and finishes of concrete masonry units, intricate details, a buttressed foundation and splashes of glass block make Masonry Technology's work on the Palm Desert Community Presbyterian Church stand out.

Stonework was once again a big player in this year's awards, with many of the projects utilizing local favorites exclusively or in coordination with other masonry materials.

  • Forrest & Associates, Inc., worked with native Iowa limestone on the Grinnell College Residence East Campus.

  • The owners of the TPC Craig Ranch requested that Dee Brown, Inc., place the Oklahoma sandstone with the back facing out to create ledges.

  • And the 11,000-square-foot Townley Residence has 168 tons of Indiana limestone accented by Tudor-style brick, four masonry fireplaces, a 2,400-square-foot cut slate patio and 3,400 square feet of flag stone walkways.

All of these projects and more are available for the viewing on page 34. Congratulations to all of the winners, and keep up the great work!



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