Women in Farming Workshop & Farm Tour – June 10
The Kansas Rural Center invites women farmers or want-to-be-farmers, women landowners, and women interested in sustainable farming, food production and local food initiatives to attend a Women in Farming Workshop on Saturday, June 10, 2017. This all-day, women-only workshop and farm tour will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Palmer Community Center, (203 N Indiana St., Palmer, KS), and two nearby farms.
Saturday’s workshop will provide useful tools and information for women farmers who are interested in increasing local food production and opportunities; raising grass-fed beef; adding or attracting pollinators to their farm operations; and growing specialty crops with high tunnels. The informal format of the workshop encourages lots of discussion, questions and participation by those attending.
The morning’s presentations will begin with Natalie Fullerton, KRC’s Community Food Solutions Program Director, giving an overview of state-level and community-based local food initiatives. She will provide an overview of the “Feeding Kansas” report and recommendations, a report that has informed the development of local food policy councils and developed into KRC’s work this year in supporting local food capacity in southwest Kansas.
Joanna Voigt, beekeeper and KRC’s Communications and Pollinator Program Coordinator, will present on pollinators on the farm. She will explain why pollinators are important on the farm (and elsewhere) and will highlight farming practices that are beneficial to pollinator populations.
The morning’s final presentation will be with Tom Buller, longtime organic farmer and K-State Research and Extension’s Douglas County Horticulture Agent. He will share an introduction to growing specialty crops in hoop houses and give guidance on using row covers and hoop houses to extend the growing and market seasons. Buller authored the in-depth “Growing Under Cover: A Kansas Grower’s Guide” with KRC in 2016, and will review the report’s findings and provide copies to attendees.
Following the presentations and a catered lunch, attendees will head to nearby Sunny Day Farms, owned and operated by Lucinda Stuenkel (1835 Parallel Road, Palmer, Kansas). The group will tour the farm’s grass-fed and grass-finished cattle operation. Stuenkel practices intensive rotational grazing, has incorporated cover crops, and is beginning to add in pollinator strips. Her farm has received numerous conservation grants and awards, including a pasture-management award and rangeland-management award.
Following the Sunny Day Farms tour, attendees will drive about 15 miles to Jay and Linda Sleichter’s farm (1282 21st Road, Clay Center, Kansas). On less than five acres, the family has six high tunnels and grows fresh produce nearly year-round, including hundreds of tomato plants in nearly every color, shape and size. The family also sells a selection of homemade jellies. Directions to both farms will be provided at the event.
Be sure to dress for the weather: Wear sturdy shoes that can get muddy and bring sun protection. Don’t forget a water bottle!
Saturday’s workshop and farm tour requires an RSVP (you can do so here – http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=haxabybab&oeidk=a07ee6girgl966031ad), and a $15 registration fee to cover lunch, the farm tour hosts, and materials.
For more information about the workshop and/or the roundtable, email KRC at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 866-579-5469.
The Kansas Rural Center, a non-profit research, education and advocacy organization promoting sustainable agriculture and food systems, is hosting the workshop with the following sponsors: United Methodist Church Great Plains Conference and the Kansas Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Alternative Crops.