Sheet Metal Workers put new lid on St. Paul’s municipal booya shed

(by Michael Moore, St.Paul Union Advocate) St. Paul’s municipal booya kitchen has a new roof, thanks to members of Sheet Metal Workers Local 10 and union contractor Berwald Roofing. Four members of Local 10 installed a new standing seam metal roof on the structure in Highland Park today. The contractor donated supplies; Local 10 picked up the labor costs. 

The union’s annual booya feed in the park – a late-summer tradition since 1968 – attracts around 1,000 active workers, retirees and family members. According to Local 10, it’s the longest-running booya feed in St. Paul.

Booya chefs began noticing the kitchen’s roof was in need of repair some time ago, and this year the union approached St. Paul Parks and Recreation, which leases the city-owned kitchen, with a proposal for handling the job on its own.

Booya is a savory stew slow-cooked in large batches over an open fire. The Highland Park booya shed – thought to be one of only a few municipally owned booya kitchens in the country – can accommodate six kettles with a capacity to cook 400 gallons at once.

Local 10’s booya feed is set for Sept. 9 this year.