About 4 years ago, our old 40-foot black walnut tree in the back yard took one for the team. Being the highest point on our property, it sacrified itself by taking a massive lightning strike. A thin strip of bark peeled off all the way down one side of the tree and the leaves began dropping mid-summer. We knew that the tree our kids loved to swing from wasn't going to survive.
A few months later, when the tree guys came to cut it down, I asked them if the wood was worth keeping. He said for $50 he'd have it board-cut and bring it back. We didn't hear from them for over 2 years and I had kinda forgot about it. One night at dinner, completely unannounced, appeared the tree guy with a truck full of board cut black walnut. Thanks to a friend with a planer and a big heart, we took 2 full evenings last summer to plane it all down. Sad to say, this is the first piece I have used so far. I can't think of a better place to use it.