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"One way to open your eyes is to ask yourself, "What if I had never seen this before? What if I would never see it again?""
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 Calendar: Events of Interest

The following is a list of events taking place around the country – and the world!

Included here are events that are organized or co-sponsored by MOFGA. Download or read our
2017 MOFGA Events Calendar (8.5"x11").

JULY 2017

  • 25 - Mechanical Weed Management – Effective Hand-Scale Tools and Techniques. MOFGA Farm Training Project workshop: Tuesday, 5 p.m. at Johnny's Selected Seeds ("Movie Palace Field"), Albion. Join tool specialist Adam Lemieux of Johnny's Selected Seeds to get acquainted with the growing world of innovative and efficient tools for organic weed management that don't involve sitting on a tractor or crawling on your hands and knees. Learn proper technique, timing and efficient use of different hand tools for effective organic weed management and test different tools on a multitude of diversified crops at Johnny's tool research farm. We'll meet at Johnny's "Movie Palace Field" across from the Amulet Country Store at 200 Rt-202 in Albion. Potluck to follow.
  • 25 - How to Establish and Manage Alfalfa in Rotation. Farmer to Farmer in the Field farm tour: Tuesday, Two Loons Farm, 407 East Vassalboro Rd., China. 5:30 p.m. farm tour; 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. topic discussion. Whether you are interested in growing alfalfa for hay or as a cover crop come and learn from Spencer Aitel on how to establish and manage alfalfa as part of your rotation.
  • 26 - Highmoor Farm Field Day. Wednesday, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Highmoor Farm, Monmouth. Registration fee is $25.00 and includes lunch. Preregistration is strongly encouraged at https://extension.umaine.edu/highmoor/blog/2017/06/20/highmoor-farm-field-day-july-26-2017/ or contact Pam St. Peter at pamela.stpeter@maine.edu or 207-933-2100. Topics include: Apple Rootstock Research / Specialty Crops Research Initiative; Hiring and Retaining Good Employees; Maine State Pomological Society Business Meeting; Two Concurrent Experiment Station Research Tours; Tree Fruit: New Geneva apple rootstocks; and pruning techniques for high apple, peach and cherry orchards; pumpkin, sweet corn, broccoli and grape variety trials; pest update; reduced tillage in organic systems and permanent beds; high tunnel tomatoes, cucumbers and strawberries; irrigation and compost application rates in high tunnels.
  • 26 - Seaweed Nursery Tour. MOFGA Gather & Grow event; 6 p.m., CCAR, 33 Salmon Farm Rd., Franklin, Maine. The sea vegetable nursery at the University of Maine's Center for Cooperative Aquaculture Research (CCAR) supports the development of the new sea vegetable aquaculture industry in Maine through research, development, and seed provision of native sea vegetable species, including sugar kelp, skinny kelp, winged kelp, dulse, and laver. The nursery has been organically certified through MOFGA since 2016, and will be offering organic seed for sale this year. For more information see the website: https://umaine.edu/cooperative-aquaculture/sea-vegetables-3/. Entrance is by donation. Email Anna at alibby@mofga.org with any questions or for more information.
  • 27 - Waldo County Small Scale Forest Stewardship Field Tour. Thursday, 3-5 p.m., Villageside Farm, Freedom. Villageside Farm owners Prentice Grassi and Polly Shyka have for several years undertaken innovative small scale thinning projects, improvement cuts, wildlife habitat measures, and access improvements on the farm woodlot. Forester Rob Nelson will describe at first hand the purpose, planning, and implementation of several projects. Meet at Villageside Farm, Route 137 (1/4 mile west of Freedom village). Tour is free and open to anyone interested in woodland management. Involves walking in the woods, rain or shine; please dress for field conditions. Parking is limited; consider carpooling. For information contact Aleta McKeage, Technical Director of Waldo County Soil and Water Conservation District at 855-884-2284, aleta.waldosoilandwater@gmail.com, or Morten Moesswilde, Midcoast District Forester with the Maine Forest Service, at 207-441-2895. WCSWCD website
  • 30 - Common Throne Workday with Nancy Rosalie. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. MOFGA volunteer Nancy Rosalie organizes the Common Thrones that you enjoy at our fairgrounds each year. Lend a hand as we fix them up for the fall. Meet at the wood shop at MOFGA (the building across from the big red barn on the corner of Crosby Brook Road and Route 139). Bring your own lunch. We'll have T-shirts for all our volunteers. FMI: volunteers@mofga.org or 207-568-4142

AUGUST 2017

  • TBA - Conservation Biological Control Short Course. 9:00 am - 4:30 pm EDT, MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, 294 Crosby Brook Road, Unity, ME. Course is tailored to the needs of farmers, NRCS, SWCD, Cooperative Extension, and state department of agriculture employees, as well as crop consultants, natural resource specialists, and non-governmental conservation organization staff. Offered by the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation. Registration is $45 per person. Course registration includes the Xerces Society's Conservation Biocontrol Toolkit and a copy of "Farming With Native Beneficial Insects." Please bring a sack lunch - lunch will not be provided. Information and registration.
  • 1 - Ecological Pest Management. MOFGA Farm Training Project workshop: Tuesday, 5 p.m., Whatley Farm, Topsham. Effective ecological pest control starts with a farm system design based on the fundamental principles of diversity and complexity. Join Dave Colson, MOFGA's Agricultural Services Director, and farmer Ben Whatley for a comprehensive perspective on managing pests in organic vegetable systems. Potluck to follow. Schedule of 2017 FTP workshops.
  • 4 - MOFGA's Common Ground Radio Show, an hour on local food and agriculture. 10 a.m. on 89.9 and 99.9 FM and weru.org
  • 5 - MOFGA Organic Orcharding Workshop: Bud Grafting. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., North Branch Farm, Monroe. Please bring a bag lunch. "Budding" uses individual buds from this year’s new growth to graft onto rootstock already set in the nursery. Instructor: Seth Yentes. Registration fee: $50; $35 for MOFGA members. Register here. More information.
  • 7 - Garden Walk with MOFGA Members June & Adam. MOFGA Gather & Grow homestead tour; 5:30 p.m., Avant Gardens, West Gardiner. Avant Gardens is an experiment in retirement homesteading. On just less than 2 acres, Adam Tomash and June Zellers have fruit trees, berry bushes, grapes, asparagus, bees, pollinator gardens and a thriving organic vegetable garden. Their aim is to grow almost all their own fruits and vegetables in a sustainable manner. The address is 751 High Street, West Gardiner, Maine. Entrance is by donation. Email Anna at alibby@mofga.org with any questions or for more information.
  • 9 - Volunteer Cook Day with Chef Frank Giglio. Wednesday, 9:30 a.m., MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity, Maine. Join us in our kitchen as chef Frank Giglio leads us in preparing some dishes to stock our freezers. He'll share some great tips and recipes, and we'll have a great time making some food for MOFGA events. We'll have lunch and T-shirts for those who lend a hand. FMI: volunteers@mofga.org or 207-568-4142
  • 9 - Biodynamic Farming. MOFGA Farm Training Project workshop: Wednesday, 5 p.m., Hope's Edge Farm, Hope. Biodynamics is a mystical, holistic approach to agriculture that has something to offer every farmer and gardener. Join host Tom Griffin for an introduction to the Biodynamic approach, and see how he incorporates it into his operation. Potluck to follow.
  • 10 - MOFGA Board of Directors Meeting. 1:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at MOFGA Common Ground Education Center.
  • 10 - Common Ground Country Fair Steering Committee Meeting. Thursday, 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Members welcome. Information: aprilb@mofga.org
  • 11-13 - Northeast Organic Farming Association's Summer Conference, Hampshire College, Amherst, MA. Information.
  • 15 - Explore a Fiber Farm. MOFGA Gather & Grow homestead tour; 5:30 p.m., Friends' Folly Farm, Monmouth. Join us for an evening at a fiber focused farm. Meet the Angora goats, tour the fiber processing mill, visit our yurt which includes fiber products and vintage treasures. Then sample a light meal featuring goat meat chili and homemade bread & cheese. For directions go to: friendsfollyfarm.com. Just off Route 202 in Monmouth. Entrance is by donation. Email Anna at alibby@mofga.org with any questions or for more information.
  • 16 - Farming with Horses. MOFGA Farm Training Project workshop: Wednesday, 5 p.m., New Beat Farm, Knox. Using animals for draft power has a number of economic, environmental and social benefits; but it is not easy. Sandy Meadow Farm relies on draft power for all aspects of their operation – from tillage to haying to woods work. Come learn the basics of this genuinely solar-based system of farming. Potluck to follow. Schedule of 2017 FTP workshops.
  • 18-20 - Maine Apple Camp. Camp NEOFA, Liberty, Maine. Join a gathering of heirloom fruit experts, advocates, and farmers to share knowledge and build networks that can facilitate the rescue and conservation our horticultural heritage. $165 for MOFGA members; $215 for non-members. For family registrations, please contact the MOFGA office. Information and registration.
  • 19 - Maine Axe and Saw Day. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. $5 admission; free for children. Come learn about the history, making, use, and care of axes, crosscut saws, peaveys and other vintage and modern non-motorized tools. Information
  • 21 - Soil Health Field Day at Bumbleroot Farm. Farmer to Farmer in the Field farm tour: Monday, 5 to 7:30 p.m., 196 Highland Cliff Rd., Windham. Join the UMaine Extension Soil Health team, MOFGA staff, and various seed and equipment dealers at this Soil Health Field Day. Events include: touring summer cover crop and cover crop mix demo plots; demos of implements for cover crop management and cultivation that are designed for improving soil health; measuring soil health. We will look at methods for testing your soil health and determining what the results tell you.
  • 23 - Seed Saving and Production on a Diversified Farm. MOFGA Farm Training Project workshop: Wednesday, 5 p.m., Seven Tree Farm, Vassalboro. Roberta Bailey of Fedco Seeds operates Seven Tree Farm, 18 acres with three field plots, an orchard and grape arbor and many fruit and berry plantings. The farm also includes a solar house, root cellar, and many post and beam buildings, including a new barn and woodworking shop. The focus of their operation is to grow much of our food and to raise commercial seed crops on a small farm scale. Seed crops can work well with the home garden or the field production gardens, further diversifying a farm operation's income and securing seed supply in some situations. The talk will focus on interplanting seed crops in your gardens or field plots, using the by-products of the crop for food production or value added products to sell, and on basic seed saving and plant genetics, crop nutrition, rotations, isolations, and how to harvest and dry seed. The talk will cover biennials such as beets and carrots as well. Potluck to follow.
  • 24 - Waldo County Small Scale Forest Stewardship Field Tour. Thursday, 3-5 p.m., Jon Robbins Woodlot, Searsmont. Landowner, licensed forester and professional logger Jon Robbins will guide us through his approach to light commercial thinning, particularly of white pine stands, which he has repeated multiple times over many years. We’ll also look at treatments he’s initiated in younger stands. Meet at the property on Moody Mountain Road, approx. 0.7 miles east of the intersection with Route 131. Tour is free and open to anyone interested in woodland management. Involves walking in the woods, rain or shine; please dress for field conditions. Parking is limited; consider carpooling. For information contact Aleta McKeage, Technical Director of Waldo County Soil and Water Conservation District at 855-884-2284, aleta.waldosoilandwater@gmail.com, or Morten Moesswilde, Midcoast District Forester with the Maine Forest Service, at 207-441-2895. WCSWCD website
  • 30 - Farm Woodlot Management. MOFGA Farm Training Project workshop: Wednesday, 5 p.m., Hidden Valley Nature Center, Jefferson. Woodlots are a ubiquitous, and essential part of farms in Maine. Whether the forest provides a heat source for your home and greenhouse, vital habitat for pollinators, foraging potential for livestock, maple syrup, or lumber for your buildings it must be managed with skill and vision. Hidden Valley Nature Center manages 1,000+ acres of forest for diverse purposes and you're invited to tour a portion of their activity with HVNC Director Andy Bezon. This workshop will emphasize the need for creativity at the intersection of field and forest, as well as a look at innovative tools, equipment, and processes. HVNC works in collaboration with MOFGA's Low Impact Forestry Project and aims to promote the thoughtful and sustainable inclusion of forests into the future of farms in Maine. HVNC was named the 2014 Outstanding Tree Farm in Maine. Potluck to follow.

SEPTEMBER 2017

  • 1 - MOFGA's Common Ground Radio Show, an hour on local food and agriculture. 10 a.m. on 89.9 and 99.9 FM and weru.org
  • 5 - Orchard Tour with John Bunker and Cammy Watts. MOFGA Gather & Grow homestead tour; 5:30 p.m., Super Chilly Farm, Palermo. Join famed apple expert John Bunker and Cammy Watts at their homestead in Palermo to explore their orchards and learn more about Maine's apple heritage. Entrance is by donation. Email Anna at alibby@mofga.org with any questions or for more information.
  • 6 - Diverse Dairy. MOFGA Farm Training Project workshop: 6 p.m., Toddy Pond Farm, Monroe. In recent decades, many small dairy farms have had to 'get big or get out' as the rising cost of operating a small scale, pasture based dairy has grown beyond economic sustainability. In order to become profitable, many producers have gotten creative—by diversification, value-added production, and innovative marketing strategies. Toddy Pond Farm is a small, diversified, family-run dairy operation of grass-fed Jersey and Guernsey cows in Monroe. Come see how farmers Greg and Heidi Purinton-Brown have designed the business model of the farm to ensure long term economic sustainability. They produce yogurt, kefir, cheese, and ice cream, along with honey, sheep, guinea hogs, meat chickens and eggs. Learn about their marketing strategies for this diversified operation and how the different aspects of the farm compliment each other. Potluck to follow.
  • 13 - Next Steps: Apprentice to Journeyperson. MOFGA Farm Training Project workshop: Wednesday, 5 p.m., Old Wells Farm, Limington. MOFGA estimates that Maine needs about 150 new farmers each year just to maintain the infrastructure required to support our local food system – so every new farm operation in Maine is a reason to celebrate! But, it's becoming increasingly difficult to get started in farming. Join Dylan and Alaena, along with several of MOFGA's current Journeypersons, as they share their insights and enthusiasm about how they are managing their first few years farming independently. Several key service providers will also discuss how their programs can help. If you are considering farming for a living, please come and contribute to this important discussion. Potluck to follow.
  • 14 - Meeting of the Executive Committee of MOFGA's Board of Directors. 3:00 - 5:30 p.m.
  • 14 - Common Ground Country Fair Steering Committee Meeting. Thursday, 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Members welcome. Information: aprilb@mofga.org
  • 22-24 - COMMON GROUND COUNTRY FAIR. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. The Fair is MOFGA’s premier event celebrating rural living. Three full days of educational talks and demonstrations, entertainment, delicious Maine-grown organic food and products from local artisans. Want to volunteer? FMI volunteers@mofga.org
  • 28 - Waldo County Small Scale Forest Stewardship Field Tour. Thursday, 3-5 p.m., Johnson Farm, Thorndike. Landowners Travis and Katie Johnson will talk about management of their 400-acre farm in family ownership since the 1700s. Travis will describe his computerized timber inventory tracking system which increases his ability to track the value of his trees. He’ll also display the Wallenstein log trailer which enables him to adjust his harvest approach and respond to specialized forest product markets. Meet at Johnson Farm at 945 East Thorndike Road (changes from Works Road), approx. 2.5 miles west of Route 7 (Valley Road), just over the Thorndike/Jackson town line. Tour is free and open to anyone interested in woodland management. Involves walking in the woods, rain or shine; please dress for field conditions. Parking is limited; consider carpooling. For information contact Aleta McKeage, Technical Director of Waldo County Soil and Water Conservation District at 855-884-2284, aleta.waldosoilandwater@gmail.com, or Morten Moesswilde, Midcoast District Forester with the Maine Forest Service, at 207-441-2895. WCSWCD website

OCTOBER 2017

  • 6 - MOFGA's Common Ground Radio Show, an hour on local food and agriculture. 10 a.m. on 89.9 and 99.9 FM and weru.org
  • 7-9 - MOFGA Nose to Tail Pork Processing. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. This is one of our most popular workshops, covering all aspects of raising, humanely slaughtering, and processing pigs. $350 all three days; $300 for MOFGA members. Register here.
  • 12 - Common Ground Country Fair Steering Committee Meeting. Thursday, 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Members welcome. Information: aprilb@mofga.org
  • 14 - A Day in the Woods. Saturday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Midcoast Conservancy's Hidden Valley Nature Center in Jefferson. Rain date Oct. 15. Cosponsored by MOFGA. Learn about low impact forestry, logging with draft horses, carbon sequestration in forests, and much more. Fun events for all, too. Information.
  • 15 - Great Maine Apple Day. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Celebrate the history, tradition, and flavor of Maine apples with MOFGA.
  • 22 - MOFGA Board of Directors Meeting. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center.

NOVEMBER 2017

  • 3 - MOFGA's Common Ground Radio Show, an hour on local food and agriculture. 10 a.m. on 89.9 and 99.9 FM and weru.org
  • 4-6 - MOFGA Farmer to Farmer Conference. Saturday to Monday, Northport, Maine. MOFGA’s annual conference for farmers provides a great opportunity to talk about what works and what doesn’t while learning new ideas from university faculty, fellow farmers and others.
  • 9 - Fair Steering Committee Meeting. Thursday, 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Members welcome. Information: aprilb@mofga.org
  • 11-12 - Maine Harvest Festival, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. http://www.maineharvestfestival.com/
  • 16 - Meeting of the Executive Committee of MOFGA's Board of Directors. 2:00 - 5:00 p.m.
  • 16-19 - Low Impact Forestry Workshops. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. For people, beginning and experienced, to learn and practice sustainable woodlot management, and logging with animals and low-impact machinery. For beginners and experienced.
  • 17-18 - MOFGA Chainsaw & Forestry Safety Courses. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Level I is a two-day course covering many aspects of chainsaw use, including the basics of saw mechanics, operation, maintenance and safety, and a chance to learn and practice safe felling techniques. Level II is for experienced saw operators who want to practice and improve their technique.
  • 27–29 - ACORN Conference (Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network). Best Western Glengarry Hotel, Truro, Nova Scotia, Canada. Largest Canadian organic conference east of Ontario. Check http://www.acornorganic.org for details.

DECEMBER 2017

  • 1 - MOFGA's Common Ground Radio Show, an hour on local food and agriculture. 10 a.m. on 89.9 and 99.9 FM and weru.org
  • 3 - MOFGA Board of Directors Meeting. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center.
  • 7 - Kitchen Licensing Workshop. Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. (Snow date December 8.) Designed for farmers and others interested in home-food processing for resale. $50 (includes lunch); $35 for MOFGA members. Register here
  • 12-14 - New England Vegetable & Fruit Conference 2017, Radisson Hotel, Manchester, N.H. http://newenglandvfc.org/.
  • 14 - Common Ground Country Fair Steering Committee Meeting. Thursday, 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Members welcome. Information: aprilb@mofga.org

 


    

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