We are in the midst of putting the finishing touches on our upcoming Innovation Issue, which hits the streets on June 1. One recent evening I took a much-needed writing break and, while still immersed in all thoughts innovative, perused my Facebook news feed. A college friend posted something that grabbed my attention. Her brother’s business, CounterEvolution, had started an Earth Day contest: share a photo of their tables/counters on social media and win a weekend in the Catskills. Truth be told, I can be easily distracted from finishing a story, but CounterEvolution (and a weekend in the Catskills) intrigued me, so off on an internet tangent I went. Lo and behold, CounterEvolution wasn’t at all counterintuitive to my innovative mindset. Eureka!
CounterEvolution began with a serendipitous seven-foot slab of reclaimed flooring from a bowling alley. Jim Malone, a musician and songwriter, made a trash-to-treasure transformation and installed it as a counter in his New York City apartment. Inspired by the beauty and character of the reclaimed wood, Malone worked on several designs and prototypes, all using salvaged flooring from bowling alleys. Heart Pine, which is the non-living heartwood (as opposed to the living sapwood) of the pine tree, is known for its durability and was a natural flooring choice for bowling alleys. In 2008 CounterEvolution was born of Malone’s creative design and practical repurposing of this unique hardwood. While the revolution began with kitchen counters, it hasn’t ended in the kitchen. Malone’s Brooklyn-made designs also include cutting boards, tables, chairs, commercial installations — just about anything where green-friendly craftsmanship, design and functionality can shine. CounterEvolution’s custom products can be ordered from their Flatiron showroom, which also doubles as an awesome event space. Commercial customers include Shake Shack, the local Starbucks and The Hummus & Pita Company.
Back to the contest. Visit one of more than 30 locations in the metro area (on LI, Shake Shack in Westbury) where CounterEvolution’s products are used, snap a photo of their tables or counters (they like photos of their “Made in Brooklyn” branding), share the photo on their Facebook page and be entered to win a 2-night weekend getaway for six at Jim Malone’s log cabin, Little Big North in Catskill, N.Y. The winner will be randomly selected at CounterEvolution’s Earth Day Party in their showroom on April 23, . Visit and post as many unique location table photos as you can, until Earth Day on April 22. Specific contest rules here. Good luck and go reclaimed!