Belton, Texas Workshops | MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR Belton, Texas Workshops | MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR
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Simplify Your Homestead Plan

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Simplify Your Homestead Plan

Are you overwhelmed by the myriad of choices in homesteading? Not sure where or how to get started? Or is the homesteading lifestyle taking more from your pocketbook than it's providing for your pantry? This workshop provides a simple planning tool to help make your homesteading dreams a practical reality. 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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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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Introduction to Charcuterie

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Introduction to Charcuterie

Learn about charcuterie: the preservation of meat using salt and smoke. Meredith Leigh demonstrates making fresh sausage and discusses other forms of charcuterie (such as fermented sausages and smoked meats). 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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Sausage Making 101

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Sausage Making 101

Learn the basics of making delicious sausage from pork, beef, chicken, lamb, rabbit, or wild game. Meredith Leigh, author of The Ethical Meat Handbook, discusses secrets to optimum flavor and texture, and she covers equipment needs (as well as creating your own recipes). Hear about cooking methods, including smoking, in addition to processing. 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. Books by This Speaker: The Ethical Meat Handbook

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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 a hog 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. Mother Earth News Stage | Sunday, 2:00-3:00 p.m. Booksigning: Sunday 3:00-3:30 p.m. 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. Books by This Speaker: The Ethical Meat Handbook

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The Permabed System

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The Permabed System

One of the ways to farm more ecologically and improve long-term profitability is to diversify production. This can be challenging when efficiency and income must be maintained in the short term while transitioning to better management practices. In addition, diversity of production can require different tools, techniques, and knowledge that may strain the farm manager. Zach Loeks' permabed system solves garden management and includes a garden layout, principles, and techniques for transitioning toward guild crop production and agro-ecological land patterning. It is scalable from 300 square feet to 3,000 acres and emphasizes soil-building practices alongside practical field management. Speaker Bio Zach Loeks is an educator, designer/consultant, and farmer in Ontario, and he has a degree in environmental geography from Concordia University. He teaches soil science at Algonquin College and root cellar design at Yestermorrow Design/Build School. He also runs workshops on and off the farm on topics ranging from organic gardening and garlic production to off-grid living and farm design. His research and farming practices emphasize integrating diversity, conserving soil, and maximizing farm ecosystem services while maintaining high productivity. He is also the author of The Permaculture Market Garden, a vibrant guide to sustainable market gardening and agroecological land patterning. Books by This Speaker: The Permaculture Market Garden

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The Permaculture Market Garden

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The Permaculture Market Garden

Zach Loeks starts with a crash course in natural science, explains ecosystem services, and covers techniques for mapping and designing your farm to fit within your property's environmental reality. He discusses how to use holistic planning to balance your business and then delves into the routine improvement of your soil through brown brain investment. The presentation culminates with Loeks laying out his Permabed system for patterning efficient garden diversity and how it serves as a framework for agro-ecosystem design. Covering key concepts from Loeks' book The Permaculture Market Garden, this workshop invites attendees to immerse themselves in this farm design process and its possibilities for simplifying and improving a farm business or homestead. Speaker Bio Zach Loeks is an educator, designer/consultant, and farmer in Ontario, and he has a degree in environmental geography from Concordia University. He teaches soil science at Algonquin College and root cellar design at Yestermorrow Design/Build School. He also runs workshops on and off the farm on topics ranging from organic gardening and garlic production to off-grid living and farm design. His research and farming practices emphasize integrating diversity, conserving soil, and maximizing farm ecosystem services while maintaining high productivity. He is also the author of The Permaculture Market Garden, a vibrant guide to sustainable market gardening and agro-ecological land patterning. Books by This Speaker: The Permaculture Market Garden

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Local Food and Farming Laws

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Local Food and Farming Laws

As more consumers seek out healthy food, local farmers and artisan producers seek to meet the demand. But the “Get big or get out” government policies of the last several decades mean that the laws and regulations are often a significant barrier for these small businesses. Learn about the laws governing local produce, grass-fed meats, home-baked goods, raw milk, and more. This overview for both producers and consumers includes a focus on food initiatives at the state and local level that are designed to help family farmers and local producers. Yanmar Sustainable Agriculture Stage | Saturday, 5:00-6:00 p.m. Speaker Bio Judith McGeary is an attorney, activist and sustainable farmer. After earning her bachelor's from Stanford and her juris doctor from the University of Texas at Austin, she practiced environmental and appellate law. During that time, she became a passionate advocate of sustainable agriculture, and she and her husband established their own livestock farm. After seeing how government regulations benefit industrial agriculture at the expense of family farms, she founded the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance to promote common sense policies for local, diversified agricultural systems. McGeary has been profiled in the Texas Observer and Edible Austin, appears in the documentary Farmageddon, and has been interviewed on numerous radio shows across the country. She serves as the executive director of the Council for Healthy Food Systems.

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Texas Water Wars: Ensuring water resources for farming and homesteading now and into the future

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Texas Water Wars: Ensuring water resources for farming and homesteading now and into the future

Title coming... Yanmar Sustainable Agriculture Stage | Saturday, 11:00-12:00 p.m. Speaker Bio Judith McGeary is an attorney, activist and sustainable farmer. After earning her bachelor's from Stanford and her juris doctor from the University of Texas at Austin, she practiced environmental and appellate law. During that time, she became a passionate advocate of sustainable agriculture, and she and her husband established their own livestock farm. After seeing how government regulations benefit industrial agriculture at the expense of family farms, she founded the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance to promote common sense policies for local, diversified agricultural systems. McGeary has been profiled in the Texas Observer and Edible Austin, appears in the documentary Farmageddon, and has been interviewed on numerous radio shows across the country. She serves as the executive director of the Council for Healthy Food Systems.

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Growing Heirloom Alliums

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Growing Heirloom Alliums

Tim Miller provides a description and a narrative of how onions, garlic, scallions, and shallots (the four alliums) respond to the Texas environment and how to grow these wonderful crops. His PowerPoint presentation features Harvey Wilson Leek, Dr. Pound garlic, and the two multiplying onions. Heirloom Gardener Stage | Sunday, 9:30-10:30 a.m. Speaker Bio Tim Miller has been a certified organic grower for 26 years. He specializes in only heirlooms and water conservation. Using only small quantities of saved rainwater has enabled him to sustain a highly diversified small-scale farm. As a product of the community gardening system, he went from backyard to community gardens, being hired by Austin Community Gardens (where he worked for nine years). He's gone from developing garden sites to owning a farm. Years of specialized growing techniques have enabled him to grow without ever pumping any aquifer water in 26 years.

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Hands-on: Fearless Pressure Cooking

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Hands-on: Fearless Pressure Cooking

Get hands-on and learn how to cook more than one item in the pressure cooker at a time. Find out how the electric pressure cooker works and use it to make some simple staples. Discover how to easily steam vegetables. Space is limited, to secure a spot to this workshop, pick up an admission ticket at the Information Desk. Speaker Bio Jill Nussinow (the "Veggie Queen") is a registered dietitian and culinary educator who has been teaching plant-based, whole foods cooking for almost 30 years at Santa Rosa Junior College and elsewhere throughout the United States and beyond. She is the author of four cookbooks: Vegan Under Pressure, The New Fast Food: The Veggie Queen Pressure Cooks Whole Food Meals in Less Than 30 Minutes, Nutrition CHAMPS: The Veggie Queen’s Guide to Eating and Cooking for Optimum Health, Happiness, Energy and Vitality and The Veggie Queen: Vegetables Get the Royal Treatment. She also stars in the DVDs Pressure Cooking, a Fresh Look: Delicious Dishes in Minutes and Creative Low-fat Vegan Cuisine. Nussinow is a fellow of The Leadership Institute for Ecology and the Economy. She frequents local farmers markets, mushroom hunting and teaching fermentation classes. She has taught thousands of people how to successfully pressure cook over the past 20 years. Her goal is to see everyone leading a healthy, happy life through better eating and cooking. She loves to share the passion and joy of eating plants that will help save the planet. Her website is www.TheVeggieQueen.com. Books by this Speaker: The New Fast Food

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Sustainable Eating with a Pressure Cooker for Personal and Planetary Health

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Sustainable Eating with a Pressure Cooker for Personal and Planetary Health

Jill Nussinow shows how quickly and easily you can cook food with the modern pressure cooker. You save time, money, and energy (both yours and the planet's). Only solar cooking saves more energy than pressure cooking. Learn what you can cook and get some tasty samples, too. Real Food Stage | Sunday, 9:30-10:30 a.m. Booksigning: Sunday 10:30-11:00 a.m. Speaker Bio Jill Nussinow (the "Veggie Queen") is a registered dietitian and culinary educator who has been teaching plant-based, whole foods cooking for almost 30 years at Santa Rosa Junior College and elsewhere throughout the United States and beyond. She is the author of four cookbooks: Vegan Under Pressure, The New Fast Food: The Veggie Queen Pressure Cooks Whole Food Meals in Less Than 30 Minutes, Nutrition CHAMPS: The Veggie Queen’s Guide to Eating and Cooking for Optimum Health, Happiness, Energy and Vitality and The Veggie Queen: Vegetables Get the Royal Treatment. She also stars in the DVDs Pressure Cooking, a Fresh Look: Delicious Dishes in Minutes and Creative Low-fat Vegan Cuisine. Nussinow is a fellow of The Leadership Institute for Ecology and the Economy. She frequents local farmers markets, mushroom hunting and teaching fermentation classes. She has taught thousands of people how to successfully pressure cook over the past 20 years. Her goal is to see everyone leading a healthy, happy life through better eating and cooking. She loves to share the passion and joy of eating plants that will help save the planet. Her website is www.TheVeggieQueen.com. Books by this Speaker: The New Fast Food

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