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Mother Earth News Fair

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Workshops

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An Introduction to Heritage Breed Goats

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An Introduction to Heritage Breed Goats

Goats have many practical uses around the homestead, and their cheerful personalities put a smile on everyone's face. Hear how you can participate in saving biodiversity by adding heritage breeds to your farm. Alison Martin discusses different breeds and the basics of getting started with goats. Speaker Bio Jeannette Beranger is a program manager for the Livestock Conservancy and has more than 30 years of experience working as an animal professional. She uses the knowledge to plan and implement breed conservation programs. At home, she maintains a heritage breeds farm with a focus on rare breed chickens and horses. In 2015, she was named one of Country Woman Magazine's "45 Amazing Country Women" for her work in conserving endangered breeds.

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Extraordinary Equines

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Extraordinary Equines

Whether you are looking for an equine for the plow, driving, endurance, therapy, or for the trail, there’s the right heritage breed equine out there for you! Learn about the variety of choices and how finding the appropriate breed for your skill and needs can make the dream of ownership and delightful reality. Speaker Bio Jeannette Beranger is a program manager for The Livestock Conservancy and counts more than 30 years of experience working as an animal professional. She uses the knowledge to plan and implement breed conservation programs. At home she maintains a heritage breeds farm with a focus on rare breed chickens and horses. In 2015 she was named one of Country Woman Magazine's "45 Amazing Country Women" for her work in conserving endangered breeds.

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Is Solar Electricity Right for You?

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Is Solar Electricity Right for You?

Solar electricity is more affordable than ever, but does it make economic sense for you? What do you need to know to install a solar electric system on your home? If you can’t afford to buy a system, can you lease one or tap into community solar projects to meet your electrical needs sustainably? Modern Homesteading Stage | Saturday, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Speaker Bio Dan Chiras is director of The Evergreen Institute in east central Missouri, where he teaches workshops on a wide range of topics on self-sufficiency and sustainability. Chiras is also author of 32 books and several hundred articles on a wide range of topics that includes residential energy efficiency and renewable energy, sustainable communities, green building and natural building. His talks are fun, inspirational and full of useful information.

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Essential Oils for Health and Well-Being

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Essential Oils for Health and Well-Being

Connie Jacoby provides information on the usage of essential oils in daily life and history; flashpoints; vital information on safety, blending oils, precautions, ingestion of oils, and overall knowledge of maladies; as well as basic and advanced treatments and benefits derived from usage. Speaker Bio A 17-year nursing professional who became disenchanted with the medical profession and pharmaceuticals, Connie Jacoby chose to use the elements God had supplied for health and well-being. Essential oils, aromatherapy, herbal supplements/tinctures and touch therapy became her focus. Those areas combined have given her the availability to provide answers for the maladies and health-care issues people face each day, affordably.

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Adding a Cow to Your Family

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Adding a Cow to Your Family

This introductory workshop prepares the homesteader for a useful bovine addition to the family. Topics covered include breed selection, purchasing, infrastructure, feeding, breeding, milking, processing, and more. Speaker Bio Callene Rapp graduated with a degree in animal science. After a short stint at a concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) hog farm, she and her husband, Eric, moved to the Wichita area, where she became the senior keeper of the Children’s Farms at the Sedgwick County Zoo. Upon getting hired, she discovered that her education was a little incomplete: A whole world of livestock never once got mentioned in school. Since then, she’s worked hard to make up for that lapse, and enjoys working to educate people about rare breeds of livestock. Today, the Children’s Farms houses one of the largest collection of rare breeds of livestock of any zoo in the country, and features 28 breeds from the Conservation Priority List. When she’s not at the zoo, Callene and Eric own and operate the Rare Hare Barn, a successful heritage rabbit meat enterprise, and their rabbits have been served at some of the finest restaurants coast to coast (but especially in the Kansas City area). She has also published several articles on livestock husbandry in Grit magazine.

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Hopping for Fun and Profit with Heritage Rabbits

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Hopping for Fun and Profit with Heritage Rabbits

Rabbits can be easy, versatile and quiet animals to raise on your small property. Heritage breeds offer a chance to set yourself apart from other rabbitries and provide value-added product for both home use or sale. Get acquainted with the breeds and the basics of raising rabbits. Speaker Bio Callene Rapp graduated with a degree in animal science. After a short stint at a concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) hog farm, she and her husband, Eric, moved to the Wichita area, where she became the senior keeper of the Children’s Farms at the Sedgwick County Zoo. Upon getting hired, she discovered that her education was a little incomplete: There was a whole world of livestock that never once got mentioned in school. Since then, she’s worked hard to make up for that lapse, and enjoys working to educate people about rare breeds of livestock. Today, the Children’s Farms houses one of the largest collections of rare breeds of livestock at any zoo in the country, and features 28 breeds from the Conservation Priority List. When she’s not at the zoo, Callene and Eric own and operate the Rare Hare Barn, a successful heritage rabbit meat enterprise. Their rabbits have been served at some of the finest restaurants coast to coast (and especially in the Kansas City area). She has also published several articles on livestock husbandry in Grit magazine.

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Carbon Gardening: How to mimic nature's best food ecosystems

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Carbon Gardening: How to mimic nature's best food ecosystems

The answers to increased food production are as old as the forests and as ancient as the prairie. Heather Rinaldi, founder of Texas Worm Ranch, coaches how gardeners can harness microbes and contribute continuous organic matter as a foundation for productive soil and profitable foodspaces. By following nature's best examples, carbon gardening can increase yields, reduce costs, decrease workload, manage water conservation, and heal the planet. Speaker Bio Raised in the farm and ranch lands of Oklahoma, Heather Rinaldi's earliest memories include gardening and raising livestock with her parents and grandparents. Her lifelong connection with the soil led her to research soil microbiology in an effort to improve her family’s organic gardens and yard maintenance. Rinaldi founded the Texas Worm Ranch in 2008, and she and her team process more than 100 tons of organic material a year into living worm castings, and garden more than 4,000 square feet of organic garden space. Today, The Texas Worm Ranch is a full-service sustainability consultant company that provides customers with the tools to be organic, affordable and successful.

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Carbon Gardening: How to mimic nature's best food ecosystems

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Carbon Gardening: How to mimic nature's best food ecosystems

The answers to increased food production are as old as the forests and as ancient as the prairie. Heather Rinaldi, founder of Texas Worm Ranch, coaches how gardeners can harness microbes and contribute continuous organic matter as a foundation for productive soil and profitable foodspaces. By following nature's best examples, carbon gardening can increase yields, reduce costs, decrease workload, manage water conservation, and heal the planet. Speaker Bio Raised in the farm and ranch lands of Oklahoma, Heather Rinaldi's earliest memories include gardening and raising livestock with her parents and grandparents. Her lifelong connection with the soil led her to research soil microbiology in an effort to improve her family’s organic gardens and yard maintenance. Rinaldi founded the Texas Worm Ranch in 2008, and she and her team process more than 100 tons of organic material a year into living worm castings, and garden more than 4,000 square feet of organic garden space. Today, The Texas Worm Ranch is a full-service sustainability consultant company that provides customers with the tools to be organic, affordable and successful.

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Benchmarks of Truth

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Benchmarks of Truth

How do you know you're on the right track? What common elements show up when a model honors truth? In this fast paced typical Salatin performance, the farmer identifies ten characteristics from his own experience that offer a compass of right decision-making. Speaker Bio Joel Salatin is a third-generation, beyond organic farmer and author whose family owns and operates Polyface Farm in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley. The farm produces salad bar beef, pigaerator pork, pastured poultry and forage-based rabbits, and direct markets everything to 5,000 families, 50 restaurants and 10 retail outlets. A prolific author, Salatin's nine books to date include both how-to and big picture themes. The farm features prominently in Michael Pollan's New York Times best-seller The Omnivore's Dilemma and the award-winning documentary Food, Inc.

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Salad Bar Beef

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Salad Bar Beef

Herbivores not only built the world's deepest and best soil, they provided the foundation for nutrition in most areas. Building soil and eating well are symbiotic activities, but many today view the herbivore as an enemy ... a direct result of misusing animals. In this workshop, Joel Salatin introduces the concepts and high-tech infrastructure that allows modern farmers to duplicate the symbiotic choreography of ancient herds. This system also increases yields and offers the most tasty, nutritious food. Speaker Bio Joel Salatin's family owns and operates Polyface Farm in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley, producing salad bar beef, pastured poultry, pigaerator pork and forage-based rabbits. The farm services 6,000 families and 50 restaurants. Featured prominently in countless media, documentaries and books, the farm offers many educational opportunities for people wanting to learn these pasture-based systems. He has written 10 books about food and farming, both how-to guides and broad cultural works.

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Family Adventures in Vermiculture

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Family Adventures in Vermiculture

This hands-on, child-friendly workshop delves into the wonderful world of worms. Learn how worms benefit your soil, your garden and the world! Play with worms and learn how to sift your own worm castings. Learn all about how to set up a vermicomposting bin in your own backyard. The first 20 families to participate get to take home a small container of worms, a small bag of worm castings and seeds. Play worm trivia and win a worm prize. Speaker Bio Crystal Stevens and her husband, Eric, are the farmers and resident artists at La Vista CSA Farm on the bluffs of the Mighty Mississippi in Godfrey, Illinois, where they enjoy the rural life with their two children. Stevens blogs for MOTHER EARTH NEWS, has contributed to Grit and Permaculture Magazine, and is a columnist for FEAST Magazine. She is the author of Grow Create Inspire, an Earth Stewardship Manifesto.

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Grow Create Inspire: Be a change maker in your community

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Grow Create Inspire: Be a change maker in your community

Learn strategies for educating your community about an array of eco-topics. Host plant walks, meet-ups, workshops, and more. Learn basic tools for increasing eco-awareness and making changes in your community. Grow for the greater good. The simple act of gardening can be a catalyst for positive change, Earth stewardship, and the art of low-impact living. Discover ways you can be an advocate for the Earth in your own community. Speaker Bio Crystal Stevens and her husband, Eric, are the farmers and resident artists at La Vista CSA Farm on the bluffs of the mighty Mississippi in Godfrey, Illinois, where they enjoy the rural life with their two children. Stevens blogs for MOTHER EARTH NEWS, has contributed to Grit and Permaculture Magazine, and is a columnist for FEAST Magazine. She is the author of Grow Create Inspire, an Earth Stewardship Manifesto.

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Grow More, Work Less: Expert tips for your vegetable garden

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Grow More, Work Less: Expert tips for your vegetable garden

Simple tips and techniques for adding self sowing annual, perennial and biennial vegetables to your garden. Learn how to save time and money in your edible landscape, permaculture beds, or any vegetable garden. Speaker Bio Ira Wallace is on the board of the Organic Seed Alliance and is a worker/owner of the cooperatively managed Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, where she coordinates variety selection and new seed grower contracts. Southern Exposure helps people keep control of their food supply through seed saving and sustainable gardening.

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Growing Great Garlic and Perennial Onions

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Growing Great Garlic and Perennial Onions

Learn about heirloom garlic and perennial onion varieties, from planting to cultivation and harvesting at home. Ira Wallace covers soil preparation, weed control, and disease prevention, as well as curing and storage requirements. Add these culinary essentials to your garden! Speaker Bio Ira Wallace is on the board of the Organic Seed Alliance and is a worker/owner of the cooperatively managed Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, where she coordinates variety selection and new seed grower contracts. Southern Exposure helps people keep control of their food supply through seed saving and sustainable gardening.

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Understanding Geothermal Heating and Cooling

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Understanding Geothermal Heating and Cooling

Learn about geothermal heating and cooling technology, how it works, and what makes it better. Tim Wright discusses various applications for home and farm, how it works with off-grid technologies, and how geothermal compares to traditional systems. Speaker Bio Tim Wright has been with Enertech Global since 2011. He oversees the company’s training, customer service, sales, and marketing departments. He began his career in the geothermal industry in 1988, working to educate homeowners on the technology and to train installers and contractors. Wright serves on the board of directors for California GEO and the Michigan Geothermal Energy Association.

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