Timber Frame Pavilions and Outdoor Classrooms

A Timeless Response to a Changing World

Timber frame pavilions are simple, beautiful structures built to shelter people from the weather. A timber frame is the ideal structural form for an outdoor classroom or gathering space, creating a large covered area with the fewest posts.

Standard and Custom Pavilions

The Rochester (Standard)

The Flared Roof (Standard)

Flying Cloud (Custom)

Dartmouth Pavilion (Custom)

A post, outshot brace, tie beam and main rafter on a timber frame pavilion

Clamshell Ampitheater (Custom)

The Rochester Pavilion

We first designed and built this pavilion for a park in the center of the town of Rochester, Vermont. The original design, pictured here, has a sheltered footprint of 440 square feet. By adding additional cross frames (called "bents"), this pavilion can be extended to cover 730 or 1,010 square feet.

Further Details

The Flared Roof Pavilion

The Flared Roof Pavilion is an eye catcher, and is slightly larger than the Rochester. Like the Rochester, it features rot-resistant white oak posts, outshot braces for increased headroom, and pegged mortise and tenon joinery throughout. The original flared pavilion, shown here, was built as an outdoor kitchen and dining area, and cover 612 square feet. The pavilion can be extended with additional bents to cover 931 or 1250 square feet.

Further Details

Flying Cloud Pavilion

We built this Flying Cloud Pavilion for a summer camp in 2014. We have since built other outdoor gathering spaces that are inspired by this one, but it remains a custom pavilion because of its complexity. The original Flying Cloud Pavilion has a thirty-two foot diameter clear-span reciprocal roof, held up by twelve forked trees. It is an awesome building, and we'd love to make you one :).

Read more about the Flying Cloud Pavilion

Clamshell Amphitheater

The clamshell amphitheater is a beautiful covered space with a 'clamshell' shaped roof. It is essentially a shed-roof pavilion, but the roof curves along the eaves, and swoops upwards in the center, as the rafters follow the arced tie beam in front. And, clearly, the posts are trees. This amphitheater was built by a former TimberHomes worker who continues to build beautiful timber frame structures in North Carolina. Visit this page to see more photos and a video about the Clamshell Amphitheater.

More about the Clamshell Amphitheater

Dartmouth Pavilion

Dartmouth College runs an organic farm where students learn about agriculture, grow substantial food for the community, and have pizza parties under this timber framed pavilion. Blah Blah Blah.....must write enough content for photo block to be the right size......


If you're looking for a simpler way to gain more covered, outdoor space, a pergola may serve your needs. Pergolas offer shade and a defined space to gather outdoors, attached to an existing building. Timber framing lends itself naturally to this type of structure, where the framework itself is the feature. Visit the gallery to see examples of pergolas we have designed and built.

Gallery of Pergolas
TimberHomes Vermont