THURSDAY AUGUST 22ND, 2019
12:30 PM ApprenticEShip Competition
2:00 pm world championship qualifier
In addition to hosting the World Championship qualifier, Illinois is one the select sites across North America to host a SPEC MIX Jr. BRICKLAYER competition. This new and exciting event tests masonry apprentices and high school students in an abbreviated version of the main regional competition.
Last year’s regional drew 11 teams of highly skilled bricklayers. Marty Marrs and Tony Savant celebrated with a brick count of 587. For their efforts, Marrs and Savant receive A Marshalltown tool bag, Stabila Level, $500, a trip to Las Vegas and the title “Illinois’ Best Bricklayer.” But they didn’t stop there; Marrs and Savant also took home the title SPEC MIX TOP CRAFTSMAN, which came with additional $500 reward.
2nd place went to mason Mike Boll and his mason tender Sam Van-Buren of J&E Duff in West Chicago, IL with a brick count of 496 earning them a prize of $400. Third place went to mason Tracy Wollenburg and his mason tender Francisco Gonzales of Mike Cachey Construction, Chicago, IL who received $300. Each subsequent competitor received a cash reward for participating and also took home a Stabila level and masonry tools.
Masonry students from the District Council Training Center were in attendance to help the SPEC MIX team run the event, and to gain valuable experience in working with some of the regions’ most skilled laborers. Two students were chosen to build their own wall to compare their skills against the pros. The student competitors took 10th and 11th place, and received a cash prize of $100 each.
For the first time in the history of the SPEC MIX BRICKLAYER 500, high school and post-secondary students will be allowed to compete in their own competition designed specifically for their skill level. Those chosen to compete in the Jr. Competition will be given 20 minutes to build an abbreviated version of the wall being constructed during the day’s journeymen bricklaying battle. Students from local trade schools will have a chance to compete in Illinois this year.
The Jr. Bricklaying event is part of a greater workforce development initiative, Masonry Education Day, which allows students a chance to meet local contractors and vendors to learn more about jobs and products in their area. Along with the student competitors, additional masonry students will be in attendance to cheer on their peers while participating in the education program.