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Women in Agriculture: The need for community

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Women in Agriculture: The need for community

Women represent the fastest-growing segment in agriculture today.Women's active role in farming has tripled in the last three decades.Even so, there is a loneliness that often accompanies women who choose this career. They need community, a place where they can share new ideas, celebrate victories, address challenges, and cultivate relationships with like-minded women. Speaker Bio Cyndi Ball has been homesteading for more than 20 years and owns the educational homestead Lazy B Farm. She is the proud mother of six home-schooled children and the wife of 30 years to her husband, Dave. She is an avid educator. Her greatest passion, outside of the home, is women in agriculture. She is the founder and president of the National Ladies Homestead Gathering, an organization that provides local community for women interested in homesteading and sustainability.

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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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Heritage Hogwash

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Heritage Hogwash

The flavor of heritage hogs is a hot topic for chefs and consumers interested in the culinary delights these pigs offer. In this talk, learn about the basics of keeping these animals, about the breeds themselves, and how to tell them apart from the numerous "imposters" that can be a costly lesson to new pig owners. 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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Heritage Hogwash

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Heritage Hogwash

The flavor of heritage hogs is a hot topic for chefs and consumers interested in the culinary delights these pigs offer. In this talk you would learn about the basics of keeping these animals, about the breeds themselves, and how to tell them apart from the numerous "imposters" that can be a costly lesson to new pig owners. 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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Saving Rare Equine Breeds

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Saving Rare Equine Breeds

In most cases, the Livestock Conservancy is concerned with rare breeds that are food producers. In this country, this is not true of horses. Consequently, different justifications are necessary to promote the idea of conserving horses. The purpose of this discussion is to develop ideas to answer the question, “Why save that breed of horse?” Some folks advocate marketing strategies that emphasize the heritage of the breed. Others advocate promoting the breed’s unique characteristics. What other strategies can be found? How important are “strains” of horses to preserving a breed? Another question to answer is how can these breeds be saved? What breeding strategies work best? Do we advocate outbreeding to preserve unique gene pools? How do we prevent bottleneck inbreeding? Finally, how do we get registries and breeders to work together? Speaker Bio Richard Blaney holds a doctorate in biology and retired after teaching for 42 years. He has been involved with preserving Galiceño horses since 2006. Heidi Reinhardt has a bachelor's in environmental science and teaches chemistry to high school students. She is a partner in the Galiceño Ranch in Florida.

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The Color of Food: Storytelling and photography from farmers of color

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The Color of Food: Storytelling and photography from farmers of color

Through photography and storytelling, Natasha Bowens, author of the book The Color of Food: Stories of race, resilience and farming, digs deeper into the stories of farmers and food activists of color revolutionizing the food system and preserving cultural foodways across the country. Their stories highlight important issues of food justice and food sovereignty, such as land ownership, health, community building, and race and gender obstacles. This presentation aims to amplify the role of communities of color in agriculture while challenging the status quo of agrarian identity and teaching us that the good food movement is about more than buying local and protecting our soil. It is about preserving culture and community, digging deep into the places we’ve overlooked and honoring those who have come before us. Blending storytelling, photography, and oral history, Bowens’ workshop explores how true food sovereignty means a place at the table for everyone. Speaker Bio Natasha Bowens is an author, grower, and community activist who focuses on building empowerment and community through food and storytelling. Her book The Color of Food: Stories of race, resilience, and farming is a book the Foreword Review calls “a trailblazing look at the past and present of North American farming” through the eyes of farmers of color. Bowens spent the past five years gathering stories and portraits of farmers and food activists from black, Latina, Asian and native communities across the country ... stories that invite us to dig deep into race, culture, and community. Bowens started The Color of Food in 2010 after exploring race and agriculture on her blog Brown.Girl.Farming. and in a column for Grist magazine. Her work has now garnered national attention from sources such as The Atlantic, MOTHER EARTH NEWS, VICE, YES! Magazine and NPR. She has shared her work across the country from Purdue, Tuskegee, and Harvard to the National Organic Farming Association and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. She currently resides in Frederick, Maryland, with her husband and brand-new daughter. She runs community gardens and gardening and cooking programs in Frederick’s public housing communities.

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Chick Fever: Getting started for less

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Chick Fever: Getting started for less

Thinking about getting chickens? Chickens make wonderful family pets. Learn all the basics of starting out, including chick care, housing needs, feed, and raising a healthy and happy flock. Throughout this presentation, Melissa Caughey shares tips, hacks, secrets to egg laying, money-saving ideas, and much more. Speaker Bio Melissa Caughey is a backyard chicken keeper, beekeeper, and gardener who writes the award-winning blog Tilly's Nest. Caughey lives on Cape Cod in Massachusetts with her family. She regularly writes for HGTV Gardens, Community Chickens, Grit magazine, and contributes to Country Living magazine. Better Homes and Gardens named her blog as one of the magazine's Top 10 Gardening Blogs, and Country Living magazine gave it a Blue Ribbon Blogger Award.

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Colorful Paper Chicken Friends

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Colorful Paper Chicken Friends

Learn how to create a flock of your own to love with paper plates, tissue paper, and googly eyes. Bring your imagination and creative spirit for this one-of-a-kind workshop. Speaker Bio Melissa Caughey is a backyard chicken keeper, beekeeper, and gardener who writes the award-winning blog Tilly's Nest. Caughey lives on Cape Cod in Massachusetts with her family. She regularly writes for HGTV Gardens, Community Chickens, Grit magazine, and contributes to Country Living magazine. Better Homes and Gardens named her blog as one of the magazine's Top 10 Gardening Blogs, and Country Living magazine gave it a Blue Ribbon Blogger Award.

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Gardening with Chicken: Secrets to success

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Gardening with Chicken: Secrets to success

Learn how to successfully plant and enjoy gardens with vegetables, fruits, annuals, and perennials for you and your free-ranging flock. Chicken-loving Master Gardener Melissa Caughey shares tips, clever ideas, how to outsmart the chickens, as well as safe plantings, fertilizers, and more secrets. Speaker Bio Melissa Caughey is a backyard chicken keeper, beekeeper, and gardener who writes the award-winning blog Tilly's Nest. Caughey lives on Cape Cod in Massachusetts with her family. She regularly writes for HGTV Gardens, Community Chickens, Grit magazine, and contributes to Country Living magazine. Better Homes and Gardens named her blog as one of the magazine's Top 10 Gardening Blogs, and Country Living magazine gave it a Blue Ribbon Blogger Award.

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All About Canning

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All About Canning

Knowing how to safely use a boiling water bath canner, steam canner and pressure canner ensures that you have the skills to preserve any food you raise, even without electricity. Learn how to use this equipment safely and sample some canned foods made by each method. Speaker Bio Andrea Chesman has written more than 20 cookbooks, including Storey’s The Pickled Pantry, Recipes from the Root Cellar, Serving Up the Harvest and Mom’s Best Crowd-Pleasers. She has also written a number of books on grilling, including the James Beard Award nominee The Vegetarian Grill. She has contributed to many publications, including The New York Times, Cooking Light, Vegetarian Times, Fine Cooking, and many regional and local newspapers. She teaches and does cooking demonstrations and classes at fairs, festivals, book events, and garden shows across the United States. She lives in Ripton, Vermont.

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Achieving Complete Self-Sufficiency

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Achieving Complete Self-Sufficiency

Many people are working toward a life of total self-sufficiency, but the road can be difficult and confusing. There are so many options and there is so much bad information that it boggles the mind. Additionally, there are many aspects of self-sufficiency (such as self-health care, personal fitness, and transportation) that people overlook. Dan Chiras, one of the nation’s leading experts on self-sufficiency, outlines the key steps you must take to completely meet your family’s needs for energy, water, food, health care, income, and transportation to thrive during major economic or ecological catastrophe or simply to forge a totally sustainable lifestyle. 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, including 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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Chinese Greenhouses: The intelligent choice for year-round production

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Chinese Greenhouses: The intelligent choice for year-round production

Most greenhouses in the United States are an energy nightmare. We couldn’t have created a worse design. Greenhouses that most of us install are the least-sustainable way to grow food year-round, costing us a fortune in energy. In this workshop, discover a revolutionary new design for year-round greenhouse growing and aquaponics, the Chinese Greenhouse. Learn how to design and build a Chinese greenhouse to grow a wide variety of vegetables without outside energy. Speaker Bio Dan Chiras is director of The Evergreen Institute in east-central Missouri, where he teaches self-sufficiency and sustainability workshops on a wide range of topics. Chiras is also author of 32 books and several hundred articles on subjects including 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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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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The Scoop on Poop

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The Scoop on Poop

To be truly sustainable, we need to return all nutrients we take from the Earth back to the Earth. That includes the valuable nutrients in human bodily wastes. Learn the basics of composting toilets and how to safely compost humanure. Speaker Bio Dan Chiras is the author of more than 30 books and several hundred articles on residential green building, renewable energy and sustainable living. He is director of the Evergreen Institute, where he teaches classes on these and other related subject.

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Natural Strategies to Manage Your Blood Sugar

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Natural Strategies to Manage Your Blood Sugar

Diabetes is common but, outside of all the emails you get about cinnamon, how many plants and therapies do you know that can help support balanced blood sugar? We tend to focus on insulin and the pancreas, but a holistic perspective requires that we also look at digestion and the endocrine system in its entirety. Dawn Combs discusses strategies to work with your doctor, gain control, and find freedom from the frustration of the ups and downs of daily monitoring. Speaker Bio Dawn Combs is an ethnobotanist with more than 20 years of experience in her field. She is the owner of the herbal health farm Mockingbird Meadows, is a contributor for Mother Earth Living, and the author of Heal Local: 20 Essential Herbs for Do-it-Yourself Home Health Care and Conceiving Healthy Babies: An Herbal Guide to Support Preconception, Pregnancy and Lactation.

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The Road to Health Is Through Your Stomach

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The Road to Health Is Through Your Stomach

Healthy digestion is important to everyone who has a stomach. Every day we hear about food sensitivities, new diets, and fad health foods. Learn how a focus on gut health with simple steps at home can guarantee daily vitality and even help you tackle some of today’s most feared diseases. Speaker Bio Dawn Combs is an ethnobotanist with more than 20 years of experience in her field. She is the owner of the herbal health farm Mockingbird Meadows, is a contributor for Mother Earth Living, and the author of Heal Local: 20 Essential Herbs for Do-it-Yourself Home Health Care and Conceiving Healthy Babies: An Herbal Guide to Support Preconception, Pregnancy and Lactation.

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Fungi in the Classroom

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Fungi in the Classroom

Ever wonder what kind of projects you and your children can start at home or in school with mushrooms? This program is part show and part hands-on, with many cool experiments that are practical for demonstrating recycling and composting home and school waste byproducts using mushroom spawn. Participants make and take home a small mushroom fruiting kit they make from shredded paper or cardboard, as well as a living culture! Speaker Bio Tradd Cotter is a microbiologist, professional mycologist and organic gardener who has been tissue culturing, collecting native fungi in the Southeast, and cultivating both commercially and experimentally for more than 22 years. He is the author of Organic Mushroom Farming and Mycoremediation, published by Chelsea Green in 2014. In 1996, he founded Mushroom Mountain (which he owns and operates with his wife, Olga, and daughter Heidi) to explore applications for mushrooms in various industries, and he currently maintains more than 200 species of fungi for food production, mycoremediation of environmental pollutants, and natural alternatives to chemical pesticides.

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Mushroom Cultivation for Everyone

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Mushroom Cultivation for Everyone

If you think growing mushrooms is too complicated, here’s your chance to see how easy and rewarding it can be. This workshop instantly gets you growing, and you leave understanding the best ways to cultivate delicious mushrooms at home or on your farm. You learn about inexpensive startup options for beginners and many commercial ideas to expand on. This class energizes your efforts and maximizes your production, covering all indoor and outdoor methods and the top edible and medicinal species that anyone can grow at home or on the homestead! Speaker Bio Tradd Cotter is a microbiologist, professional mycologist and organic gardener who has been tissue culturing, collecting native fungi in the Southeast, and cultivating both commercially and experimentally for more than 22 years. He is the author of Organic Mushroom Farming and Mycoremediation, published by Chelsea Green in 2014. In 1996, he founded Mushroom Mountain (which he owns and operates with his wife, Olga, and daughter Heidi) to explore applications for mushrooms in various industries, and he currently maintains more than 200 species of fungi for food production, mycoremediation of environmental pollutants, and natural alternatives to chemical pesticides.

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Mycoremediation and Recycling and Composting of Home and Farm Waste Using Mushrooms

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Mycoremediation and Recycling and Composting of Home and Farm Waste Using Mushrooms

Are you wondering how you can help reduce pollution and lessen your impact on landfills? Tradd Cotter teaches how to grow edible mushrooms on trash you thought you couldn’t compost! Turn cardboard, cereal boxes and more into fresh mushrooms, and then add your leftover “fungus farm” to your garden to attract worms and enrich the soil. Create a circular system that’s a winner! Many species of edible and medicinal mushrooms sweat powerful enzymes into the environment as they grow, capable of molecular disassembly of complex molecules such as hydrocarbons, aromatic chlorinated compounds, and pesticides. Mushrooms native to your area of the United States are also well-adapted to filter, stun and destroy pathogenic bacteria that accompany failing septic systems, manure-holding ponds, and even pet waste runoff. Hear about easy, turnkey projects from beginner to advanced that anyone can do. Speaker Bio Tradd Cotter is a microbiologist, professional mycologist and organic gardener who has been tissue culturing, collecting native fungi in the Southeast, and cultivating both commercially and experimentally for more than 22 years. He is the author of Organic Mushroom Farming and Mycoremediation, published by Chelsea Green in 2014. In 1996, he founded Mushroom Mountain (which he owns and operates with his wife, Olga, and daughter Heidi) to explore applications for mushrooms in various industries, and he currently maintains more than 200 species of fungi for food production, mycoremediation of environmental pollutants, and natural alternatives to chemical pesticides.

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Crop Planning for Sustainable Vegetable Production

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Crop Planning for Sustainable Vegetable Production

Follow a step-by-step approach to closing the planning circle, so that you can produce crops when you want them and in the right quantities. Planning this way allows you to sell your crops where and when you need to and support yourself with a rewarding livelihood while replenishing the soil. Never repeat the same mistake two years running! Speaker Bio Pam Dawling is the author of Sustainable Market Farming: Intensive Vegetable Production on a Few Acres. She is also a contributing editor with Growing for Market magazine. An avid vegetable grower for almost 40 years, she has lived at Twin Oaks Community in central Virginia for more than 20 years, growing vegetables and berries for 100 people on 3.5 acres, and providing training for members in sustainable vegetable production.

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Succession Planting for Continuous Vegetable Harvests

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Succession Planting for Continuous Vegetable Harvests

Hear how to plan sowing dates for continuous supplies of popular summer crops, such as beans, squash, cucumbers, edamame, and sweet corn; cold-weather hoophouse greens; and year-round lettuce. Using these planning strategies can help avoid gluts and shortages. Speaker Bio Pam Dawling is a contributing editor with Growing for Market magazine. Her book, Sustainable Market Farming, is on sale at this event. An avid vegetable grower for almost 40 years, she has lived at Twin Oaks Community in central Virginia for more than 20 years, growing vegetables and berries for 100 people on 3.5 acres, and providing training for members in sustainable vegetable production.

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A Tiny Home to Call Your Own: Living well in just-right houses

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A Tiny Home to Call Your Own: Living well in just-right houses

You can have an attractive, upscale quality-built tiny home that is artistically beautiful, highly marketable and long-term profitable. Smaller homes can be more livable, cozy, enjoyable, easier to clean and lower maintenance than big houses. But tiny and smaller homes are not for everyone. Learn why and what it takes to live in a small space to make room for a larger life. Explore the many uses of tiny homes and find out why more people are opting for less square footage in exchange for more time, freedom and money. Speaker Bio Patricia Foreman is a sustainable agriculture author, local foods activist, and popular speaker. She (and her co-presenter, chicken celebrity Oprah Hen-Free) has presented workshops and book signings at major national festivals and conferences across the United States. She is the author or co-author of five books, including City Chicks and Chicken Tractor. To help “Chick Start America,” she developed the Backyard Chicken Keeper Certification course (www.ChickensAndYOU.com). Foreman graduated from Purdue University with degrees in animal science and pharmacy. She has a master's of public affairs from Indiana University’s Graduate School of Public and Environmental Affairs.

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Chick in Egg: The miracle of incubation

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Chick in Egg: The miracle of incubation

The journey from egg to chick is an awe-inspiring, educational, life-affirming event. This workshop journeys through the entire process of getting fertile eggs (without a rooster), selecting the most likely eggs to hatch and managing the incubation process. Egg to chick in only 21 days! Understand the cycle of eggs to chicks to hens to more eggs. Become a Chickeneer Eggspert! Speaker Bio Patricia Foreman is a sustainable agriculture author, local foods activist, and popular speaker. She (and her co-presenter, chicken celebrity Oprah Hen-Free) has presented workshops and book signings at major national festivals and conferences across the United States. She is the author or co-author of five books, including City Chicks and Chicken Tractor. To help “Chick Start America,” she developed the Backyard Chicken Keeper Certification course (www.ChickensAndYOU.com). Foreman graduated from Purdue University with degrees in animal science and pharmacy. She has a master's of public affairs from Indiana University’s Graduate School of Public and Environmental Affairs.

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Home Poultry Processing: The art and science of micro-scale meat bird processing ... using tools you already have

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Home Poultry Processing: The art and science of micro-scale meat bird processing ... using tools you already have

Learn how to humanely, safely, sanitarily and skillfully process your birds. What to do with those roosters and older hens? Get healthy, high-quality meat, and bone broth from your backyard flock. This workshop covers topics including the power of knowing your meat source, how it was raised, fed and processed; the sacred significance of taking a life ... so that you can live; the science and chemistry behind skilled meat processing; processing equipment that you have ... or could easily borrow; hand-plucking made fun; super simple evisceration and an educational anatomy lesson; nutritional differences of meat from heritage vs. commercial breeds; and cold shorting and effective freezer packaging for long-term storage. Processing your own chickens for family food is a lost art in our culture. It’s time to bring back this old tradition and combine it with new techniques, so that poultry processing becomes common knowledge in homes and communities. Speaker Bio Patricia Foreman is a sustainable agriculture author, local foods activist, and popular speaker. She (and her co-presenter, chicken celebrity Oprah Hen-Free) has presented workshops and book signings at major national festivals and conferences across the United States. She is the author or co-author of five books, including City Chicks and Chicken Tractor. To help “Chick Start America,” she developed the Backyard Chicken Keeper Certification course (www.ChickensAndYOU.com). Foreman graduated from Purdue University with degrees in animal science and pharmacy. She has a master's of public affairs from Indiana University’s Graduate School of Public and Environmental Affairs.

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Maple Tapping and Raisin Cane

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Maple Tapping and Raisin Cane

Alan and Susan Fox "sweeten" the pot by bringing you not just one but two ways to get a sugar rush! First, they share how to start a backyard sorghum project and demonstrate a simple way to juice the canes. Next, they tell how to tap maple trees and make your own sumac spiles (taps). Enjoy a sample of maple sap. Speaker Bio Alan and Susan Fox's farm is truly sustainable. After Susan was diagnosed with breast cancer and Alan lost his job, all they had to fall back on was the farm. They had to make it work for themselves. They are a small-scale, diversified, working and teaching farm. They use natural methods, and no antibiotics or hormones for the animals. At their on-farm, state-inspected kitchen, they process Bloody Butcher cornmeal, hops jelly and traditional jellies, and prepare baked goods. They grow in-season produce and berries, and now are a Farmstead Aged Cheese Micro-Dairy. They also make and sell goat milk soap and crafts. They are recipients of the 2015 WNC Ag Options grant for Yancey County and are offering a "workshop stay" with some of their workshops. Susan also does some freelance writing and has written a self-published book of some of their workshops (The Mushroom Hut @ Fox Farms ... Workshops from the Farm).

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Tapping into a Sweet Idea: Making natural sumac spiles

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Tapping into a Sweet Idea: Making natural sumac spiles

Alan and Susan Fox show how to make natural spiles/taps from staghorn sumac branches. They talk about how to tap your own trees (they don't have to be sugar maples) without all the expense. They also talk about when and how to go about tapping and the boiling down process, and offer samples of their newly released "sap waters." Speaker Bio Alan and Susan Fox's farm is truly sustainable. After Susan was diagnosed with breast cancer and Alan lost his job, all they had to fall back on was the farm. They had to make it work for themselves. They are a small-scale, diversified, working and teaching farm. They use natural methods, and no antibiotics or hormones for the animals. At their on-farm, state-inspected kitchen, they process Bloody Butcher cornmeal, hops jelly and traditional jellies, and prepare baked goods. They grow in-season produce and berries, and now are a Farmstead Aged Cheese Micro-Dairy. They also make and sell goat milk soap and crafts. They are recipients of the 2015 WNC Ag Options grant for Yancey County and are offering a "workshop stay" with some of their workshops. Susan also does some freelance writing and has written a "self-published" book of some of their workshops (The Mushroom Hut @ Fox Farms ... Workshops from the Farm).

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Aromatherapy for Wellness

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Aromatherapy for Wellness

This fun, hands-on class focuses on making aromatherapy simple and easy to use. The light but informative talk discusses 17 essential oils. Billy Galloway shares not only what the oils do, but how to use them to achieve desired outcomes. Discover how to use aromatherapy to assist issues including sleeplessness, psoriasis, restless leg syndrome, hot flashes, lack of energy or focus, sinus problems, arthritis, fibromyalgia, and depression. Speaker Bio Billy Galloway has been experiencing the benefits of aromatherapy since 2006. He is a certified aromatherapist accredited by the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy and is the eastern director of operations for Natural Options Aromatherapy. Galloway, his wife, Jenny, and two children reside in Kingsport, Tennessee.

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Nature's Pharmaceuticals

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Nature's Pharmaceuticals

Naturally formed, plant based essential oils really are Nature’s Pharmaceuticals. Depending on the plant they can provide pain relief, are anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal, relieve stress, aid sleep, improve arthritis, heal wounds, stop scaring, increase energy, remove cramps, help relieve psoriasis and eczema, help PMS and menopause including hot flashes, and even improve grades. How do they work and how do you use them? Come and find out at this fun, hands on seminar. Speaker Bio Billy Galloway has been experiencing the benefits of aromatherapy since 2006. He is a certified aromatherapist accredited by the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy and is the eastern director of operations for Natural Options Aromatherapy. Galloway, his wife, Jenny, and two children reside in Kingsport, Tennessee.

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Guinea-Keeping for Organic Pest Control

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Guinea-Keeping for Organic Pest Control

More and more, people are searching for non-chemical means of controlling yard and garden pests, including grasshoppers, beetles, and Lyme disease-carrying ticks. Guinea fowl can be a big part of your organic pest control plan for your yard, farm, or garden. Among their many benefits, guineas are insect-eating machines, and they are easy-keepers, once you learn about their specific needs. This talk includes information about how to raise guineas and incorporate them into your already existing situation, how to take advantage of their traits and habits, best housing, and everything else guinea-keepers need to know. Speaker Bio Cindy Gibson is president of Guinea Fowl International, an organization founded to support the responsible guinea-keeping and to educate on the care and habits of Guinea Fowl. She first acquired guineas to help combat a grasshopper infestation on her Texas ranch, and now keeps over 100 guinea fowl along with her chickens, ducks, and grazing animals. She helps new guinea-keepers, and frequently speaks to groups about the why-and-how to incorporate guinea-keeping into your landscape or farm. In particular, she helps dispel some of the myths and misinformation that has led some to unsuccessful attempts at guinea-keeping.

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Edible and Medicinal Mushrooms for the Rest of Us

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Edible and Medicinal Mushrooms for the Rest of Us

Do you like mushrooms, but are not sure what to pick, grow, or propagate? Join John Holzwart for this basic overview that is sure to inspire you to become that special "funguy"... or gal. Speaker Bio John Holzwart is a naturalist, permaculturist, educator, beekeeper, wild forager, and maker of traditional brooms. He has his design certificate in permaculture and applies these principles to his daily life. Holzwart teaches and demonstrates the many traditional skills he practices at events across North America. You can often find him in the woods looking for broom handles or mushrooms and other wild edibles.

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Grow Your Own Broom

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Grow Your Own Broom

Historically, many farmers grew broom corn and crafted their own farmstead brooms. Join broom maker John Holzwart as he illustrates this lost art from seed to sweep. Speaker Bio John Holzwart is a naturalist, permaculturist, educator, beekeeper, wild forager and traditional broom maker. He has his design certificate in permaculture and applies these principles to his daily life. Holzwart teaches and demonstrates the many traditional skills he practices at events across North America. You can often find him in the woods looking for broom handles, mushrooms and other wild edibles.

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Eating Wild: Identifying the wild edible plants in your own backyard

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Eating Wild: Identifying the wild edible plants in your own backyard

Want to learn how to identify and utilize the wild edible plants growing in your own backyard and nearby wild spaces? Join Heather Houskeeper, author of A Guide to the Edible and Medicinal Plants of the Mountains to Sea Trail as she highlights our local useful plants, offering easy methods for identification, harvest, and incorporating them into deliciously healthful meals both at home and on the trail. Now this is what you call eating local! Plants will be showcased by photos taken in the field and there will be plenty of time for question and answer. Speaker Bio Heather Houskeeper is an herbalist, long-distance hiker and writer. After thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail and graduating from the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine, she set her sights on the Mountains to Sea Trail. Here, she trekked 1,000 miles across North Carolina, studying the edible and medicinal plants along the way. This experience culminated in her newly published book, A Guide to the Edible and Medicinal Plants of the Mountains to Sea Trail. When not rambling in the woods, she enjoys writing, cooking, and teaching people about local plants in the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina.

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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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Growing Fungi for Farm Diversity and Resilience

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Growing Fungi for Farm Diversity and Resilience

As our planet rapidly changes, we must find solutions to retain and build resilience in our agroecosystems. Explore our alliance with fungi, which provides farmers opportunities to support and grow biodiversity, enhance ecosystem services, and provide food and medicine for our communities and the planet. At this workshop, expect a discussion of advanced techniques for mushroom growing and how to use mycelium as a solution to growing a regenerative agriculture. Speaker Bio Mark Jones is the owner and mycologist at Sharondale Mushroom Farm in Cismont, Virginia. The farm provides high-quality mushrooms, spawn, tools, and materials for mushroom cultivation. Jones offers cultivation workshops for hobby growers and small farmers.

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Marketing for Small-Scale Mushroom Growers

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Marketing for Small-Scale Mushroom Growers

This semi-moderated discussion and overview of mushroom farm marketing aims to include participants' experiences about how to identify a market, develop a brand, develop buyer relationships, understand certification processes, and adapt cultivation to demand. Other topics include post-harvest handling as well as value-added products for retail and wholesale marketing. Speaker Bio Mark Jones is the owner and mycologist at Sharondale Mushroom Farm in Cismont, Virginia. Sharondale Farm provides high-quality mushrooms, spawn, tools, and materials for mushroom cultivation. Jones offers cultivation workshops for hobby growers and small farmers.

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Growing Your Own Food on the Homestead

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Growing Your Own Food on the Homestead

Growing your own food provides an endless number of benefits for you and your family, some of which include self-sustainability, improved health, and teaching the values of hard work to the younger generation. With his vast horticultural and agricultural knowledge, Greg Key provides insight into the tools and practices needed to grow food on the homestead. Key delivers practical and feasible solutions for beginner or advanced gardeners to help them grow good, clean food for their family and friends. Speaker Bio Greg Key has been involved in horticulture and agriculture for more than 30 years. With a special interest in organic and small-scale production, he has been on the forefront of the local food movement. He enjoys studying the processes and educating people about how to make growing healthy, local food more possible. With vegetable gardening being one of his favorite hobbies, he founded Hoss Tools in 2009 with the goal of manufacturing and selling high-quality, American-made garden tools. Today, Hoss Tools provides gardening tools and supplies to people all over the world, with the primary goal of helping people grow their own food.

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Farmstead Chef: Organic eating on a dime

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Farmstead Chef: Organic eating on a dime

What’s the key ingredient to eating healthy, saving money and stewarding the planet? A return to our nation’s farmstead roots of independence, self-sufficiency and frugality. Learn simple, creative tips for rethinking household food budgets, from preserving the homegrown harvest to stocking the kitchen pantry. Speaker Bio Lisa Kivirist is a national speaker, writer and innkeeper of Inn Serendipity Bed and Breakfast. Together with her husband, John Ivanko, Kivirist is co-author of Homemade for Sale, Farmstead Chef, ECOpreneuring and Rural Renaissance. Kivirist is a distinguished Kellogg Food and Society Policy Fellow, and a national advocate and leader for women in sustainable agriculture. She initiated and directs the Rural Women’s Project of the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES), an award-winning initiative providing resources and networking for women farmers and food-based ecopreneurs.

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Big Food Talk

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Big Food Talk

Meredith Leigh, author of The Ethical Meat Handbook, leads a compelling class on the future of eating. She makes connections between environment, economy, culture, and science to discuss how we should think about the food we eat, and why it matters. This workshop is full of cutting, chopping, cooking, talking, and answering questions, leaving participants with a new way of thinking about food ... one that touches on day-to-day dietary considerations as well as global perspective. Speaker Bio Meredith Leigh is a farmer, butcher, cook, and the author of The Ethical Meat Handbook: Complete Home Butchery, Charcuterie and Cooking for the Conscious Omnivore. She lives in Asheville, North Carolina.

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Whole Animal Butchery

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Whole Animal Butchery

Meredith Leigh, author of The Ethical Meat Handbook, demonstrates whole-animal butchery. Using lamb as an example, she discusses delicious and thrifty use of the entire carcass, and applies principles of butchery, charcuterie, and cooking to other animal species as well. Speaker Bio Meredith Leigh is a farmer, butcher, cook, and author of The Ethical Meat Handbook: Complete Home Butchery, Charcuterie and Cooking for the Conscious Omnivore. She lives in Asheville, North Carolina.

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Hand Tools for Wood Harvesting, Firewood Processing, and Basic Woodworking

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Hand Tools for Wood Harvesting, Firewood Processing, and Basic Woodworking

Learn the value of new and vintage hand tools for firewood harvesting and basic woodworking. This workshop covers the basic tools needed for everything from felling trees to splitting kindling and green woodworking. Hear what tools you're better off buying vintage, and what you can buy off the shelf without worrying. Speaker Bio From an early age, Jonathon LeValley has had a passion for the outdoors. Starting with a simple pocket knife at age 6 and a cheap hatchet by 8, experience has taught him the value of good tools and hard work. The hunt for a good axe led him to start restoring tools, and in 2012, the hobby became a full-time profession with the founding of LeValley Outdoors. Outside of the shop, Jon spends hundreds of hours each year researching and testing tools and techniques both new and old.

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The Axe: A brief history one of man's oldest tools, and how to select and care for one today

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The Axe: A brief history one of man's oldest tools, and how to select and care for one today

Developing across continents and millennia, the axe has been man's constant companion and one of our most valuable tools. This long development has led to a dizzying variety of axes, but selecting one today need not be a complicated process. Once you learn how to select an axe, you'll also learn how to maintain it for many years of happy use. Speaker Bio From an early age, Jonathon LeValley has had a passion for the outdoors. Starting with a simple pocket knife at age 6 and a cheap hatchet by 8, experience has taught him the value of good tools and hard work. The hunt for a good axe led him to start restoring tools, and in 2012, the hobby became a full-time profession with the founding of LeValley Outdoors. Outside of the shop, Jon spends hundreds of hours each year researching and testing tools and techniques both new and old.

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Guinea Fowl 101

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Guinea Fowl 101

Fun facts and things you never knew about guinea fowl, as well as the basics on how to keep guineas successfully and safely, so they can be part of your organic pest control plan. Speaker Bio Dana Manchester has been keeping guineas since 2004. He is one of the few folks in the United States who works with breeding for all the various colors and patterns, and he is now very close to having a complete understanding of all the plumage mutations. In addition to research, Guinea Fowl International promotes guineas and their many uses.

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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 Alison Martin is the program director at the Livestock Conservancy, a membership organization for conserving heritage livestock and poultry. With more than 20 years of experience in agriculture, she provides technical support and education to heritage breed farmers and ranchers.

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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 Alison Martin is the program director at the Livestock Conservancy, a membership organization for conserving heritage livestock and poultry. With more than 20 years of experience in agriculture, she provides technical support and education to heritage breed farmers and ranchers.

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Herbal Bitters: An easy way to enjoy the forgotten flavor

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Herbal Bitters: An easy way to enjoy the forgotten flavor

Every culture with an intact food system uses bitter-tasting plants to enhance meals, encourage conviviality, and support good digestion. These preparations rely on a simple recipe structure that allows almost infinite variation. Learn how to use the spectrum of bitter flavors, from classic "pure" bitters like gentian and artichoke to the more "nutty" taste of burdock and walnut. Combine them with a range of flavor profiles, using "hot" or "cool" pungent herbs, citrus notes, floral highlights, and more. Finally, adjust the mouthfeel by balancing astringency and demulcency. The resulting blends will be unique, carry the stories of the plants that they feature, and open up the potential for a range of health-promoting effects. As you learn more about the wild plants that go into making bitters, you will see how making your own, and discovering the roots of herbalism, is one of the keys to optimal wellness (and a powerful ecological act, too). As the internal environment changes in response to bitters, we can see our external environment change as well: from monoculture to diversified, small-scale agriculture; from the herbicides of industrial agriculture to gardens that encourage weedy buffer zones, pollinator diversity, and a healthy harvest of medicinal herbs. Speaker Bio Guido Masé RH (AHG) is a clinician and educator in the Western herbal tradition. He spent his childhood in Italy and has been living in Vermont since 1996. His practice interweaves clinical experience, mythology, and science. He is a chief herbalist at Urban Moonshine, clinician at the Burlington Herb Clinic, faculty member and clinical supervisor at the Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism, teacher in herbal medicine at the University of Vermont, and author of The Wild Medicine Solution and DIY Bitters.

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Rewilding Using Medicinal Plants: How herbs link personal health to the health of the community, soil, and ecology

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Barbecue Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades: Bastes, butters, and glazes, too

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Barbecue Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades: Bastes, butters, and glazes, too

Barbecue Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades is Steven Raichlen’s encyclopedia of the flavor boosters, dry and wet, that give grilled food its character, personality, depth, and soul. Chili-fired rubs, lemony marinades, buttery bastes, and flavorful sauces, mops, slathers, sambals, and chutneys: In more than 200 recipes from around the globe, Raichlen shows how to add the expert touch to every dish in your repertoire. The book also includes a number of recipes for finished dishes, such as Korea Town Brisket, Jamaican Jerk Spareribs, and Kung Pao Smoked Chicken. The best-selling original edition sold over half a million copies and, due to its popularity, Workman has fully revised and updated it with a beautiful new look, full-color photographs throughout, information on all of the latest advances in barbecuing and grilling techniques, and a number of new recipes. Speaker Bio Steven Raichlen is America’s foremost grilling authority. His last book, Project Smoke, was a New York Times best-seller, and previous live-fire cookbooks have won James Beard and IACP awards. Articles by Raichlen have appeared regularly in The New York Times, Food & Wine, and Bon Appétit, and for the past dozen years he’s taught sold-out Barbecue University classes, currently at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He and his wife divide their time between Miami, Florida, and Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts.

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Pond Management Dynamics

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Pond Management Dynamics

Knowing what is going on inside the dynamics of your pond can help you effectively manage it to meet the needs of your farm. Learn practical solutions to control erosion, algae and vegetation, as well as how to enjoy all the benefits your pond has to offer: fish production, swimming, aquatic plants, fire protection and relaxation! Speaker Bio Ken Rust has been involved with pond and lake management and aeration product design for 20 years. With Louisiana Pond Management, he manages ponds and lakes and people's expectations of them on a daily basis. He enjoys educating people about pond biology and helping them get the most out of their aquatic assets.

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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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The Return of the Family Milk Cow, Part 1

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The Return of the Family Milk Cow, Part 1

Discover how the family milk cow can make the homestead leap forward in terms of self-sustainability, providing so much for the family's health and well-being. Learn why and how to prepare for and buy a healthy cow that will not be plagued with dairy cow issues such as mastitis, ketosis and milk fever. It starts before birth! Speaker Bio Faith Schlabach and her husband, Adam, are passionate about helping others learn how to care for their very own family milk cow. She shares from her experiences raising and training family cows, teaching a natural approach that lends itself nicely to the hobby farm model. Yes, though a cow is a bit more complicated than raising a tomato, folks come away from her workshops inspired and filled with know-how! The Schlabach’s produce three Milking School DVDs - 5+ hours all about how to care for your very own Cud Chewing Beauty Queens!

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The Return of the Family Milk Cow, Part 2

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The Return of the Family Milk Cow, Part 2

Learn about housing, pasture needs, feeding and keeping your cud-chewing beauty queen healthy with a naturally based model (and how it differs from the industrial model). Buy hay and feed no grain, some grain, or tank her up? Speaker Bio Faith Schlabach and her husband, Adam, are passionate about helping others learn how to care for their very own family milk cow. She shares from her experiences raising and training family cows, teaching a natural approach that lends itself nicely to the hobby farm model. Yes, though a cow is a bit more complicated than raising a tomato, folks come away from her workshops inspired and filled with know-how! The Schlabach’s produce three Milking School DVDs - 5+ hours all about how to care for your very own Cud Chewing Beauty Queens!

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Going Local Without Going Crazy: 25 Tips to increase your local footprint

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Going Local Without Going Crazy: 25 Tips to increase your local footprint

Want to bring healthy, local foods into your kitchen, and stay on-budget, too? Julia Shanks has a passion for and expertise in locavorism, and is eager to share easy ways we can all make change that connect us to the food and farmers in our own communities. The world is changing as more people are supporting local, small businesses and returning to homemade food to avoid the health, social, and environmental consequences associated with processed foods from big agribusinesses. Shanks is leading a discussion and Q-and-A session, complete with recipes, ideas, and a healthy dose of delicious fun. Speaker Bio Chef, author, and entrepreneur Julia Shanks prepares food and farm businesses for growth through business planning, cash flow planning, and financial feasibility studies. Some of her most intriguing projects include developing a Cricket Cracker recipe for Aspire Food Group and refining the growth strategy of Boston’s first rooftop farm. She is the author of The Farmer’s Office and co-author of The Farmers Market Cookbook.

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Kids Kraut!

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Kids Kraut!

Kids love to make and eat sauerkraut. Vegetable fermentation is one of the oldest, and perhaps the most healthful, food preparation (and preservation) methods. This rediscovered culinary art is easy and safe, making it a wonderful, accessible way for even the youngest “chefs” to begin participating in the preparation of their family’s nourishment. And that is empowering. This workshop is a hands-on program in which kids can taste some fresh raw sauerkraut and then make their own small batch to take home and ferment. This is a drop-in-style session, so stop by and join us. Speaker Bio Kirsten K. Shockey and Christopher Shockey got their start in fermenting foods with their farmstead food company, where they created over 40 varieties of cultured vegetables and krauts. Their current focus is on teaching the art of fermenting vegetables to others through classes and workshops at their farm. Kirsten blogs at www.fermentista.us. They live on a 40-acre hillside homestead in the Applegate Valley of southern Oregon.

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Mastering Vegetable Fermentation for Fun, Flavor and Health

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Mastering Vegetable Fermentation for Fun, Flavor and Health

Vegetable fermentation has moved beyond sauerkraut into an entirely new realm of flavor, culinary art and adventure. Kirsten K. Shockey discusses the benefits of making and enjoying fermented vegetables. She demystifies the process by discussing these ancient methods and modern techniques of preservation. She explores herbal pastes, chutneys, and other condiments through demonstration. Speaker Bio Kirsten K. Shockey and Christopher Shockey got their start in fermenting foods with their farmstead food company, where they created over 40 varieties of cultured vegetables and krauts. Their current focus is on teaching the art of fermenting vegetables to others through classes and workshops at their farm. Kirsten blogs at www.fermentista.us. They live on a 40-acre hillside homestead in the Applegate Valley of southern Oregon.

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Preserving Your Harvest Through Fermentation: From A to Z

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Preserving Your Harvest Through Fermentation: From A to Z

For your harvest of garden veggies why not use one of the safest, easiest, most flavorful and healthiest techniques known to preserve and keep all the nutrients alive (and even increase health benefits)? Learn how to ferment your vegetables when they are in season for flavor all year. This demonstration includes a special question-and-answer session: Stump the Fermentista! Along with other questions, attendees can list some of the veggies in their gardens and hear Kirsten K. Shockey come up with recipe ideas on the spot. Speaker Bio Kirsten K. Shockey and Christopher Shockey got their start in fermenting foods with their farmstead food company, where they created more than 40 varieties of cultured vegetables and krauts. Their current focus is on teaching the art of fermenting vegetables to others through classes and workshops at their farm. Kirsten blogs at www.fermentista.us. They live on a 40-acre hillside homestead in the Applegate Valley of southern Oregon.

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Heat With Solar: Successfully radiant heat integration

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Heat With Solar: Successfully radiant heat integration

Join Arden Steiner to learn how to effectively use solar water heaters to save thousands and provide the best possible heat for your health and finances. All energy is best left in its original state – the more you transfer energy the more you lose! Start saving today with radiant heat connected to your solar water heaters! Speaker Bio Arden Steiner leads the team at Rayviance. During the past few years, Steiner has immersed himself in the solar water heating market by learning, investigating, researching, and integrating systems. Steiner's passion is not to just support green energy, but rather to support energy that truly makes sense and makes a difference.

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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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DIY: Chicken coops and tractors on the cheap

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DIY: Chicken coops and tractors on the cheap

Karen Lynn Thompson and her husband, Eric, share how to build your own DIY chicken coops and mobile tractors (and how to do it affordably and easily). They have raised more than seven flocks of chickens since 2002 and still have six chickens in a DIY, mobile chicken tractor right in their yard in suburbia. Think you can't raise chickens? Well, think again ... You can, and the Thompsons not only show you some they have built, they also answer questions at the end of their session. Speaker Bio Karen Lynn Thompson and her husband, Eric, are suburban homesteaders and beekeepers. They raise backyard chickens and grow a nice supplement to their food supply in their garden ... all on a third of an acre in North Carolina. They are passionate about helping people find creative ways to grow food and keep chickens!

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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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How to Produce Half Your Food in Less Than an Hour Per Day in a Backyard

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How to Produce Half Your Food in Less Than an Hour Per Day in a Backyard

Marjory Wildcraft presents a simple three-part system for producing your own food in a backyard-sized space. Fast-paced and empowering, this presentation gets down to the numbers of calories produced, square footage required, and exactly what to do on a daily basis. The focus is on food production in a scenario in which the grid is down. Speaker Bio Marjory Wildcraft is the founder of the [Grow] Network, the online home of a global network of people who produce their own food and medicine, recognizing the wisdom of homegrown food on every table. Wildcraft was featured as an expert on sustainable living by National Geographic, and she's a regular guest on Coast to Coast AM. The author of several books, she is perhaps best known for her video series Grow Your Own Groceries: More than a half million copies are in use by homesteaders, foodies, preppers, universities and missionary organizations around the world.

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The 7-Hour Business to Fund Your Family Farm

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The 7-Hour Business to Fund Your Family Farm

How does seed saving, homesteading experiments, and sustainability relate to the businesses models of Exxon Mobil, O'Hare International Airport, and Google? The most successful businesses on the planet are profitable mainly due to extreme resource depletion. Are there any other business models where you could earn income while working toward sustainability? Learn about an experimental business that is attracting and rewarding the brightest and best people on the planet to do the work of creating a sustainable relationship between humans and our ecosystem. While still small, this model has been wildly successful and is growing by leaps and bounds. If you are an excellent communicator who is truly living and working toward sustainability, and you are interested in earning $5,000 to $20,000 a year for part-time work, see if this is for you. Speaker Bio Marjory Wildcraft is the founder of The Grow Network, which is the online home of a global network of people who produce their own food and medicine. Wildcraft was featured as an expert in sustainable living by National Geographic, she speaks at MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIRS, and she is a regular guest on Coast to Coast AM. She is the host of the annual Home Grown Food Summit, but she's best known for her video series "Grow Your Own Groceries," which has more than a half million copies in use by homesteaders, foodies, preppers, universities, and missionary organizations around the world.

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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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Easy Seed Starting

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Easy Seed Starting

Learn to start seeds directly in the garden and indoors using the English seed-starting method, soil blocking. For those who want to grow organically, seed starting is essential and easy with a few ground rules to follow. This workshop includes a hands-on demonstration. Speaker Bio Lisa Mason Ziegler is a cut-flower farmer, author and nationally recognized speaker on organic cut-flower gardening. Ziegler has been farming since 1998; her urban 3-acre farm produces thousands of stems of flowers each week in season. She sells her flowers to florists and through her CSA programs. Ziegler is the founder and owner of The Gardener’s Workshop, a catalog and online shop offering the gardening tools and supplies she uses in her own gardens.

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Grow Cut-flowers for Profit

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Grow Cut-flowers for Profit

Learn the ins and outs of field-grown cut-flowers for profit from veteran flower farmer Lisa Mason Ziegler. She discusses tips for getting started, who you can sell to, what to grow, and how to sell cut-flowers commercially. Flower farming can become a part of your homestead or your urban home with little investment. Ziegler’s urban 1-1/4 acre cutting gardens produce thousands of stems each week in season. Speaker Bio Lisa Mason Ziegler is a cut-flower farmer, author and nationally recognized speaker on organic cut-flower gardening. She has been farming since 1998; she sells her flowers to florists and through her CSA programs. Ziegler is the founder and owner of The Gardener’s Workshop, a catalog and online shop offering the gardening tools and supplies she uses in her own gardens.

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Vegetable Gardening: Got flowers?

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Vegetable Gardening: Got flowers?

What business do pretty flowers have in a vegetable garden? Not much, according to most gardeners. Flowers are often treated like tag-along little sisters: They only get a place if there’s room left over. In decades past, flowers were considered a key element of the vegetable patch. Today, they are a casualty of downsizing and practicality. But even though you can’t eat them, flowers more than pull their weight in the garden; they are the welcoming mat for pollinators and beneficial insects. Want your garden to have a strong community of natural garden workers? Plant flowers! Their blossoms will attract a workforce of beneficial insects that will come, set up housekeeping and raise their families. Learn how you can add three seasons of flowers to benefit your vegetable garden and your lifestyle. Speaker Bio Lisa Mason Ziegler is a cut-flower farmer, author and nationally recognized speaker on organic cut-flower gardening. She has been farming since 1998; her urban 3-acre farm produces thousands of stems of flowers each week in season. She sells her flowers to florists and through her CSA programs. Ziegler is the founder and owner of The Gardener’s Workshop, a catalog and online shop offering the gardening tools and supplies she uses in her own gardens.

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