Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

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March 1, 2013

His hobby is for the birds

GLASGOW — A sign in Leo Esters’ front yard on Mammoth Cave Road just outside of Cave City reads, “Look Honey! Birdhouses! For Sale!”

Another sign beneath that one reads, “$5 each.”

The signs are surrounded on all sides by birdhouses of varying sizes, most of the bluebird boxes are made of cedar, which deters mites.

Esters has been making birdhouses since 1995 — five years before he retired from his job with the Great Onyx Job Corps.

“I enjoy doing it,” he said. “I just piddle and do it.”

Woodworking is just a hobby for him, even though he does sell quite a few of the items he makes.

“It’s not just birdhouses now,” he said.

Esters started with birdhouses, but has branched out to making toy chests, cedar chests, flower baskets, cabinets, and well, just about anything and everything.

He was inspired to take up woodworking by his father, who made grandfather clocks.

Of all the items he makes, birdhouses are still is No. 1 sellers. The cedar flower baskets run a close second, though.

“We have a lot of repeat customers,” Esters said.

Usually, his repeat customers are people on vacation, visiting Mammoth Cave National Park, who stop to buy a birdhouse or two as a souvenir.

In 2012, he sold more than 700 birdhouses.

For the rest of the story, read the weekend print or edition.

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