Apple juggling
Events: March 2009

Maple Sugaring Tours

Sunday, March 1 2:30PM - Sunday, March 29 5:00PM | N. Brookfield, MA | directions

We'll share stories about the Native Americans’ role in the early history of sugaring, then continue by demonstrating colonial methods and tools for collecting and boiling. During a quick trip to our woods you'll explore two different systems used today, and will have an opportunity to see new technology. Aspects of nature, science, meteorology, and math will be woven into the presentation. The tour heads to the sugarhouse, where a large evaporator stands ready to receive sap from collection tanks outside. Here, everyone will learn how sap is boiled into syrup, and see the equipment and gauges needed for this process. We'll end back at the picnic table area for more stories and sampling. Boiling is weather dependent, so the tours are not based on our ability to boil. This is certainly a tradition that has something of interest for all ages! You may also choose to just come and walk around the farm on your own at no charge and without reservations. The Sweet Traditions movie will be playing throughout the day in the greenhouse, and you can poke around the tour areas when groups are not using them. Reservations required. Admission fee for guided tour.

Hosted by The Warren Farm at the The Warren Farm: 31 Warren St., N. Brookfield, MA.

Contact Janice Wentworth at (508) 867-0174 or by e-mail for more information.

Energize Your Farm's Future: 2nd Annual One-Day Farm Conference & Resource Fair

Saturday, March 7 | 11:00AM - 7:00PM | Dighton, MA | directions

Cost: $20 (includes lunch). Two pesticides recertification credits offered

Special thanks to our conference sponsors Fieldworks and First Pioneer Farm Credit!

8am: Registration

ALL DAY: Grants Room: Reps from BCCD, MDAR, FSA, NRCS, SARE, Trustees of Reservations, &
more will be available to answer your individual questions about grant program details and your eligibility.

8:30-10:00 am: Farm Energy Workshop
Augustine Pimentel of NTSAR, Jim Staley of National Resource Management, and Vincent Graziano of RISE Engineering will cover programs, technologies, and incentives to help farms monitor and save on energy use.

10:00-10:30 am: Break

10:30 am-12:00 pm: Farm Transfer and Tenure Workshop (two options)
Option 1: How to Save a Million Dollars:
Attorney Neal Satran details concrete ways to
save your money and your land through advance
farm transfer planning.
Option 2: Farmland Leasing:
Kathy Ruhf and Bob Bernstein of Land For Good
cover specific farmland lease models and structures
that let entering growers build equity.

12:00-1:00 pm: Lunch Prepared by Mike Melo of M&C Café, New Bedford, featuring local foods.

12:00-1:00 pm: Resource Fair: Get your questions answered & learn about new offerings from
exhibitors including Baker Tractor, BioBlend Renewable Resources, Fieldworks, First Pioneer Farm Credit, Kencove Fencing, King’s AgriSeeds, Ledgewood Greenhouses, NE Biodiesel Equip. & Supplies, SEMAP, Whole Foods Market, and more.

1:00-2:30 pm: Second Round of Workshops (Three Options)
Option 1: Season Extension:
Ed Persons of Ledgewood Greenhouses provides specific
information on production techniques and budgeting for season-extending crop production in both unheated high tunnels and heated greenhouses.
Option 2: Grassfed Poultry:
Jennifer Hashley of Pete and Jen’s Backyard Birds in Concord will
discuss her successful pastured poultry business and her work on a Mobile Poultry Processing Unit
(MPPU) in Western MA. Ali Berlow of Island Grown Initiative will discuss the Vineyard’s MPPU.
Option 3: Grassfed Meats:
Don Minto of Watson Farm in Jamestown RI will discuss his
grassfed beef operation, including sales through farmers’ markets, and the RI Raised Livestock Association. Tom Adams of King’s AgriSeeds will
cover pasture mixes.

2:30-2:45 pm: Break

2:45-3:45 pm: Third Round of Workshops (Three Options)
Option 1: Cucurbit Pest Management
Paul Peters, Agronomist - Fieldworks, Westport
Application for 1 pesticide recert. credit in process
Option 2: Parasites of Pastured Poultry
Michael Darre, UConn Application for 1 pesticide
recert. credit in process.
Option 3: MPPU Tour: Led by Jen Hashley and Ali Berlow. Take a look at the different setups of the W. MA and Vineyard Mobile Poultry Processing Units (MPPUs).

Alternative Contact information:

TO REGISTER: Email Becky Turner at BCD to receive an emailed or mailed copy of the invitation and registration form.

Special offer: Register for this conference and the Fieldworks meeting on 2/15/09 and receive $5 off each joint registration.

Hosted by SEMAP & BCCD at the Bristol County Agricultural High School: 135 Center Street, Dighton, MA.

Contact Becky Turner at (508) 669-6621 or by e-mail for more information.

The 'Microbiopolitics' of Raw Milk Cheese in the U.S.

Tuesday, March 10 | 7:30PM - 9:00PM | Providence, RI | directions

Heather Paxson, Associate Professor of Anthropology at MIT, explores how people grapple with changing socioeconomic conditions and new bioscientific knowledge through everyday ethical practices, especially those having to do with reproduction and food. She is now working on an ethnographic study of American artisanal cheesemakers and will speak about the politics of raw milk cheese in the U.S.

Hosted by The Committee on Science and Technology Studies at the Brown University, Macmillan 115: 167 Thayer St., Providence, RI.

Contact Michele Duff at (401) 863-3138 for more information.

Plan an Affordable Green Wedding

Wednesday, March 11 10:00PM - Thursday, March 12 12:00AM | Providence, RI | directions | website

Join instructor Kim Grant, Eco-Wedding Consultant of Learn all aspects of planning a socially responsible wedding, including local and organic food and beverages. Discover where to find eco-friendly vendors. You can plan your dream wedding, be socially responsible and stay within your budget.

Cost: $45 non-member, $39 Learning Connection member. Pre-registration required.

Hosted by Learning Connection at the Learning Connection: 201 Wayland Ave., Providence, RI.

Contact Kim at (919) 414-5507 for more information.

RI Livestock Association Annual Meeting

Wednesday, March 18 9:30PM - Thursday, March 19 12:00AM | West Greenwich, RI | directions

The Annual meeting of the Rhode Island Raised Livestock Association will be held on March 18th at 6:30 at the Elks Lodge in West Greenwich. All members of the Association are encouraged to attend as well as anyone interested in RI Livestock and Rhode Island Agriculture.

RIRLA has planned an informative evening of information for RI farmers. This meeting is an opportunity to learn more about the Association and what we offer our members. Farmers will get valuable information on how to obtain permits to sell your meat; learn more about different cuts of meat for marketing. Upcoming educational workshops and pasture walks will be announced. RIRLA is a member driven organization and there will be an open forum to brainstorm and plan projects and direct activities for 2009 and beyond.

Hosted by RIRLA at the Elks Lodge: 42 Nooseneck Hill Road, West Greenwich, RI.

Contact Kim Ziegelmayer at (401) 575-3348 or by e-mail for more information.

The Business of Farming + Food on the Farm

Friday, March 27 | 11:30AM - 6:00PM | Exeter, RI | directions

A Very Special Two-Part Program

Program Fee $10.00 (FarmWays Association Members Free)

8:30-9:00 Registration

Part I The Business of Farming - Improving agriculture's business standing and profile -"yours," "mine" and "ours."

With local agriculture enjoying a renaissance and public support strong and growing, why isn't that support being reflected in the business and economic development communities? Why isn't agriculture, for example part of any 'business cluster' as defined by the Economic Development Corporation? Why was the fight for farmland preservation dollars in 2008 so contentious? Why are land and farm tax issues so long in coming to resolution on the Hill?

And what about your own business profile?
Is your farm business set up the way it should be? Are your business practices helping or hindering your growth? Are you connected where you can take advantage of business counseling services and support now available to farm operators?

Sign up for free business counseling services
Sharpen your business skills to become more visible and viable.
Connect with local business leaders and services available to help.
Explore important insurance issues and solutions.
Start measuring your business success this year and every year forward.

9:00 Ken Ayars, Chief DEM Division of Agriculture with a very special announcement for the agricultural community.

9:15-11:45 Panels on farm business issues and answers
Special Guests will include:
Sherri Lynn Carrera, Manager Small Business Services, Every Company Counts (RIEDC)
Representative Mike Rice (Democrat - District 35, South Kingstown)
Charlie Koines, NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets
Joseph O Connor, Director Claims, Farm Family Insurance
Representatives from RI Chambers of Commerce and the business media

11:45-12:30 Lunch

Part II Food on the Farm - what you need to know to conduct safe and successful food activities and events on your farm

Food Regulations and ordinances
Food safety and sanitation
Farm Kitchens
Prepared and packaged foods
Catering for Food and Wine Events
"Feast in the Field" - process and protocols

12:30:2:30 Panels on Farm/Food Issues
Special Guests will include:
Tom Nerney - Compliance Evaluation and Standards Officer, RI Department of Health Office of Food Protection
Steve Krohn - Newport Vineyards, New England Wine School and Wine entertainment Resources
Glenn Place - Tom's Marketing Catering - Guest Chef and Caterer for "Feast in the Field"

3PM Adjourn

Join us, bring your questions, comments and concerns.

All RI, CT, and MA farmers are invited and welcome!

Seating limited. All attendees must pre-register on RIFarmWays website "Contact Us" page.. Please write in box: "Program 3/27"

This program is being cosponsored by the Rhode Island Small Business Development Center at Johnson and Wales University in partnership with RICAPE.

Hosted by RICAPE at the Schartner Farm Corner Nursery(Formerly Bald Hill Nursery): 90 Ten Rod Road, Exeter, RI.

Contact Stu Nunnery at (401) 592-0209 or by e-mail for more information.