Northland companies Cedaero, Wintergreen transition to making PPE

Baihly Warfield
Updated: April 07, 2020 10:43 PM

Many Northlanders have found the rhythm of the sewing machine to be steady as the rest of the world feels a little off-beat. 


Summer Goebel has always enjoyed sewing. About three months ago, she made it her career when she landed a job as a sewer for Cedaero in Two Harbors. 

The company makes bikepacking bags. But recently, Cedaero and Summer switched to making masks. 

"I think we grabbed some of the first kits that they made," Goebel said, referencing herself and Karl Gorecki. 

Cedaero already had most of the materials. It was just a matter of putting the resources to work. 

"For example, Cedaero has the cutting table that can cut so much fabric so easily and so accurately, like to not use that would be ... a waste," Gorecki said. 

He works at SpokeNGear, a bike shop in Two Harbors. And since they have both been home for several weeks, making the masks helps them pass the time. It takes 10-15 minutes to sew each one. 

"We're forced to stay home, so this is a great way to put our skills and something that we do -- well, I do -- every day, and help out," Goebel said. 

About 50 went to Lakeview Hospital in Two Harbors, and others were bound for the Damiano Center and the Duluth Regional Care Center. 

"Small business or big business right now, I feel like everyone's trying to help as much as they can," Goebel said. 

Up in Ely, Wintergreen Northern Wear is using its fabric cutting machine and industrial sewing machines to make masks, gowns and headgear that will go to Iron Range and North Shore clinics. 

They had to try out a few prototypes to see what would be best and most comfortable. And now, sewers are stationed 12 feet apart, working hard to churn them out. 

Wintergreen is also recruiting community members to make 3,000 masks. They're helping out with the supplies and a pattern. 

If you need a mask and are in the Ely area, you can request one from Wintergreen using this form


Baihly Warfield

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