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TOFGA Virtual Conference @ online
Jan 5 @ 5:00 pm – Feb 25 @ 7:30 pm
TOFGA Virtual Conference @ online

The Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (TOFGA) is holding its 27th Annual Conference online this year. This virtual conference format features expert speakers and will draw participants from across the state and country. The conference includes virtual tours of farms, ranches, and homesteads from different regions and of different scales to highlight the diverse ways that Texans are participating in organic and sustainable agriculture. With workshops featuring top soil scientists, industry experts, and innovative and experienced farmers and ranchers, this year’s conference is sure to excite and engage!

Live sessions will be held every Tuesday and Thursday evening in January and February. Dive in deep with expert speakers and fellow agriculturalist on topics like applied weed ecology, on-farm goat diaries, high tunnel management, utilizing technology for online sales, and much, MUCH more! Tune in to live sessions to have the opportunity to ask questions and share ideas.

Never miss a session with a-synchronistic viewing options! If you are unable to tune-in to workshops on Tuesday or Thursday you can view them at your leisure. Your conference registration gives you access to the session recordings up to a year after the conference.

For more information or to register, visit the conference website, or email TOFGA.

12th Annual Agroforestry Symposium: Community Health & Resilient Food Systems @ online
Jan 28 @ 9:00 am – Jan 30 @ 12:30 pm
12th Annual Agroforestry Symposium: Community Health & Resilient Food Systems @ online

The University of Missouri’s 12th Annual Agroforestry Symposium is a free virtual gathering with engaging webinars, research posters, exhibitors, and roundtable sessions. Speakers include:

  • Mariah Gladstone, Blackfeet & Cherokee food educator, IndigiKitchen
  • Michael Muehlbauer and Alkebu-Lan Marcus, Philadelphia Orchard Project
  • Rose Hayden-Smith, garden historian and author, UC Food Observer
  • Jim Worstell, The Resilience Project

In response to the ongoing challenges we collectively face at this time, including the coronavirus pandemic, climate change, and inequities in social, environmental, and economic realms, the University of Missouri Center for Agroforestry seeks to share and support creative solutions. Sustainable food and agriculture systems exemplified by diversified agroforestry practices yield outcomes that can have a positive effect on each of these challenges. From healthy, accessible food that supports disease-resistant bodies, to innovative strategies for strong local economies, and community engagement for improved equity and awareness, the 2021 Agroforestry Symposium will highlight inspiring efforts and leaders who are paving a way to comprehensive community wellness.

Major themes to be addressed at the Symposium are relevant to farmers, value-added producers, health professionals, community organizers and engaged citizens. Themes include:

  • Specialty crops for healthy people and a healthy environment
  • Innovative community development and advocacy
  • Access and equity for a socially just food system

This annual event is an opportunity for networking and education, to help build and grow connections between efforts taking place at the University of Missouri, partnering institutions, and organizations who are contributing to resilient food and agriculture solutions. In order to retain the collective energy of a live in-person event without compromising health and safety, the Symposium seminars will be held online with opportunities for discussion, questions, and dialogue. The event will take place Thursday, January 28th through Saturday, January 30th, from 9:00am to 12:30pm daily.

For more information or to register, visit the conference webpage, or contact the University of Missouri Center for Agroforestry by email or phone (573-884-2874).

Raising Sheep & Goats 101 @ online
Jan 28 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Raising Sheep & Goats 101 @ online

Raising Sheep & Goats 101

One of the appeals of living on an acreage or in a more rural area is the ability to raise animals for fun or profit. This program is for anyone considering raising sheep or goats for the first time. Join Oklahoma County Extension Educator Joshua Campbell to learn the basics of breed selection, housing, fencing, health and nutrition for sheep and goats. Registration required to receive the Zoom link.

For more information or to register, visit the registration page, or contact the Metropolitan Library System by email or phone (405-231-8650).

Emerging Farmers Conference @ online
Jan 29 – Jan 30 all-day
Emerging Farmers Conference @ online

The 16th annual Emerging Farmers Conference will be held virtually this year due to COVID 19.

The annual Emerging Farmers Conference (formerly the Immigrant & Minority Farmers Conference) serves to advance the success and sustainability of farmers who traditionally face barriers to the education and resources necessary to build profitable agricultural businesses, including immigrant farmers and farmers of color.

This innovative conference focuses primarily on the needs and interests of these farmers, and supports their contributions to local economic development and building healthy communities. It does so by connecting farmers, farm advocates, educators, professionals, experts, and agency officials.

The Emerging Farmers Conference (EFC) is FREE for all farmers and language interpretation is available in Spanish, Hmong, Karen, Bhutanese, Vietnamese, and Somali. Interpretation is based on registration.

The EFC is a program of Big River Farms. It is planned and hosted by a collaborative of farmers and volunteers, government, nonprofit, and University of Minnesota personnel. ​

EFC attendees will be able to share experiences and learn from other farmers in the following workshops:

  • Profitable Farming
  • Pest and disease management
  • Scaling to wholesale
  • Value-added production
  • Land access panel
  • Producer panel
  • Conservation and NRCS grant programs
  • Keynote address with Tiffany LaShae

For more information or to register, visit the conference webpage, or contact KaZoua Berry by
email or phone (651-504-8105).

Blue Thumb Volunteer Training @ Stillwater (Oklahoma State University)
Jan 30 @ 8:30 am – Jan 31 @ 4:30 pm
Blue Thumb Volunteer Training @ Stillwater (Oklahoma State University)

Blue Thumb is having a training for new volunteers from 8:30am to 4:30pm on Saturday, January 30, 2020 and 8:30am to 4:30pm on Sunday, January 31, 2020 at Oklahoma State University at 164 N Monroe Street in Stillwater, OK.

The first day of training will include an introduction to the Blue Thumb program and an overview of various ways you can participate as a Blue Thumb volunteer, with a focus on volunteer education opportunities. You will also get to learn about water quality, watersheds, nonpoint source pollution and other topics through a series of educational activities which you can then use to educate members of your own community. Project WET (Water Education for Teachers) will be included and all participants will recieve at WET activity guide at the end of the day. The day will also include a visit to a local creek to discuss the creek’s ecology and biology, including getting into the water and looking for bugs and fish.

The second day of training will cover all of the monthly chemical tests conducted by volunteers at their local creek or stream. There will also be a discussion of the test results, what they mean and what they reveal about water quality and nonpoint source pollution. The day will include visiting a local creek to perform all of the required stream-side testing procedures and then returning to the indoor location to perform the chemical tests volunteers conduct every month. This monitoring training is mandatory before you can begin to monitor your creek.

All volunteers who have been trained in the past but would like a refresher course on their chemical tests are also welcome and encouraged to attend.

For more information or to register, visit the Blue Thumb website or email Blue Thumb.

*Refunds will be available until January 23*

**If you miss the sign up, and would still like to participate, tickets will be available for an extra $10.00 charge until January 27 with no refund**

Because of the uncertainty of the COVID-19 situation, the number of participants for this training has been reduced. There will be two concurrent trainings, with 10 people in each room, maintaining proper social distancing, and with plenty of hand sanitzer available. All equipment will be sanitized before use, and all staff will be wearing face masks when not outside.

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