Previous events

2015

July 9
Rita to give a presentation on Cooking with Herbs, at Wenke's Greenhouse, 6 pm. Kalamazoo.
June 17
Join the local Permaculture group and Local Lawton for a field trip to PJ's Forest Garden, 7pm. One block west of Welch's on White Oak Rd. in Lawton.
May 20
Local Lawton, meeting on Weds., May 20 at 7 pm - topic Wild Edible Foods & Mushrooms. We meet in the Community Room, 510 S. Main St.
May 14
Rita to give a presentation on Teas for enjoyment and health, Wenke's greenhouse, 6 pm. Kalamazoo.
May 3
Michigan Land Trustees Meeting, 5 pm begins with potluck meal. Contact the Bobers for location.
May 2
Bangor Garden Expo - Norm and Rita will share Wild Edible Foods at 9:30 am. Located at the United Methodist Church, Bangor.
April 15
Local Lawton, meeting on Weds., April 15 at 7 pm. Celebrate Earth Day with special guests Bill Westrate and Kay Caskey who will discuss Bees & Butterflies and other pollinators.
March 18
Local Lawton, meeting on Weds., March 18 at 7 pm for our annual Seed Exchange and discussion of how to save seeds. Collecting seeds for our Seed Bank in the Lawton Library.
Feb 18
Local Lawton, meeting on Weds., Feb. 18 at 7 pm to discuss Diverse, Edible Landscapes. Transform your yard into a beautiful place of food, flowers, and medicinal plants. We meet in the Community Room, 510 S. Main St.
January 21
Local Lawton - let's plan for the coming year. We need your input - what would you like to see happen in our community. We meet on Weds., from 7-9 p.m., at the Community Room. Hope to see you there!

January 11
Michigan Land Trustees meeting. We start with a potluck at 5 p.m. with the meeting to follow. Meeting will be at Tom and Layne's house in Portage. Contact us for directions at boberrita@yahoo.com

2014

December 20
Join with the Miniss Kitigan Drum to celebrate Winter Solstice. Hear the Ojibwe Creation story. Learn how the Ancient Ones celebrated Winter Solstice. Enjoy a potluck with kindred spirits. For details email us at boberrita@yahoo.com

November 19
Local Lawton showing of the film The Sanctity of Sactuary. A film about one man's attempts to change his life and the world around him. Discussion to follow - 7-9 pm in the Community Room.

November 17
Norm and friend Rich Smith will talk about what they have learned participating in the Tom Brown Tracker School, as well as how they have integrated those teachings with their experiences in the natural world. Program for Portage Central High School students who are reading Tom Brown's book, The Tracker.

September 17
Local Lawton reskilling on Canning and Freezing Food. Join us on Weds., 7-9 p.m. in the Community Room, 125 S. Main St. (same bldg. as the Library/Clerk's office).

August 3
Local Lawton and Van-Kal Permaculture group will host a Sun Energy program with solar dehydration and solar cooking. 4 pm at the local park. Potluck to follow.

July 4
Local Lawton at Summerfest parade - join us as we celebrate July 4th. with a sustainable bike-float. Meet at E. Fourth & Main St. We will be passing out copies of our recently published Lawton-Area Food and Farm Guide.

May 22, 2014
Plant Identification Walk at the home of Bobbi Martindale and Jon Towne, Bangor, MI, 6:30-7:30 pm. 24760 C.R. 681, north of town.

May 18, 2014
Michigan Land Trustee meeting, potluck at 5 pm - contact Rita and Norm for location.

May 4, 2014
Local Lawton
Herbs for the Family - come and learn which herbs can help your family with everyday health issues. Lawton Community Room, 125 S. Main St. (same building as the Library/Clerk's office). We meet from 3-5 pm.

April 29, 2014
Norm and Rich teaching bow drill fire making at Portage Central High School.

April 16, 2014
Medicinal Kitchen Herbs and Wild Herbs From Your Yard. Bangor Public Library, Wednesday, 6 pm. Presentation by Rita. All are welcome.

April 6, 2014
Local Lawton
Lawton Community Room, 125 S. Main St., Lawton, 3-5 pm. Seed Exchange - a time to share the vegetable and flower seeds we have saved and place some in the Seed Bank at the Lawton Public Library.

March 8, 2014
Getting Started with Renewable Energy in your Home
Room 141 at LakeMichigan College in South Haven, 1-4 pm. Norm will present our experience in including renewable energy into our lifestyle.

March 2, 2014
Local Lawton
Fermentation: The How and What of Fermenting Foods. Lawton Community Room, 125 S. Main St., Lawton, 3-5 pm

Jan. 19, 2013
Transition Van Buren/Allegan
Sunday, at 2 p.m. at The Wellness Center in South Haven. If you're interested in attending, email us at boberrita @ yahoo.com.

Jan. 12, 2013
Michigan Land Trustees
Meeting at the home of Mike & Lisa Phillips, 84757 28th St., Lawton. Potluck begins at 5 p.m. with meeting afterwards. All welcomed.

Jan. 5, 2013
Local Lawton
Film on local food and gardening. Lawton Community Room, 125 S. Main St., Lawton from 3-5 p.m.

2013

Dec. 1, 2013
Local Lawton
Abundance Gift Swap to be held at the Lawton Community Room, 125 S. Main St., Lawton from 3-5 p.m.

Nov. 3, 2013
Local Lawton Picnic
We'll meet at Peace of Porter Farm, 24280 CR 352 from 3-5 p.m. Topic: Available Resources: Using, Sharing and Beyond.

October 6, 2013
Local Lawton Meeting
Sunday from 3-5 pm. Agenda and venue TBD.

Sept. 23, 2013
Local Lawton Seed Saving Workshop
Monday, 7:00 pm in the Lawton Community Room (125 S. Main St). Come learn about saving seeds from several knowledgeable people who have saved seeds for years.

Sept. 15, 2013
Michigan Land Trustees
Southwest Michigan Harvest Fest, Sunday from 11:30 - 5:30 pm at Tiller's International in Scotts. Both MLT and Van-Kal Permaculture will have booths there. Great place to meet local folks with similar ideas, hear good music, and more.

Sept. 13, 2013
Van-Kal Permaculture Meeting
At Dale & Tomme's, Michigan Ave. at Foresman, Kalamazoo. Starts at 5:30 pm and includes a potluck and visit with Bill Wilson of Midwest Permaculture.

Sept. 8, 2013
Michigan Land Trustees
Starting with a potluck at 5 p.m. at Maynard Kaufman's home in Bangor. Updates on the Harvest Fest, preparing for Bill McKibbens visit to Kalamazoo and more. All are welcome.

Sept. 1, 2013
Local Lawton Picnic
Sunday from 3 - 5 pm at Lewis park. Bring a dish to pass, your own place settings and your ideas.

August 4, 2013
Local Lawton Meeting
Sunday from 3-5 p.m. Gathering at the homestead of Rita and Norm. Learn how they are working towards sustainability through a tour of their 15 acres including passive solar home, garden, orchard, animals, medicinal and edible plants, trees, and shrubs (over 100).

July 13, 2013
Permaculture Gathering
Saturday, meet at 5:30 p.m. Tour of the Bober's 15 acre homestead. Share a potluck meal and discuss permaculture ideas. See many medicinal and edible plants, shrubs, and trees.

May 11, 2013
Plant Walk for Medicinal and Edible plants with Rita and Norm on the Kal-Haven Trail
Sponsored by the Bloomingdale Area Historical Association Heritage Day. Free walk along the Kal-Haven Trail State Park. Meet at the Jeff Mitchell midpoint trail head at 10 am. The trailhead parking is totally accessible to the Trail. The walk should last 1 to 1.5 hours.
May 5, 2013
Local Lawton
Monthly meeting at the Community Room, 125 S. Main Street, from 3-5 pm. This month we will be talking about sustainability and mapping our community.
May 4, 2013
Plant Walk with Rita, Norm, and Phil
Edible and Otherwise Useful Plants at the Briarwood Valley Arboretum. Park at Ken Kirton's house - 121 Woodwind Circle, Kalamazoo, 49006 at 10 am. Sponsored by the Michigan Botanical Club-Southwest Chapter.
January 13, 2012
Local Lawton
Local Lawton meeting, 3-5 p.m. at the Lawton Community Room (same building as the Library/Clerk’s Office, 125 S. Main St). We will view the movie The Power of Community, a documentary about surviving with less fossil fuel energy. We'll discuss how Lawton might cope under similar circumstances. A must-see, heartwarming film of hope.
January 6, 2013
Transition VBA Meeting
Our next meeting for Transition Van Buren / Allegan is this coming Sunday, January 6th. It will be held at the Bloomingdale Municipal Center (Town Hall/Library), just east of the red blinker light on the north side of the street at 2 PM.

2012

November 11, 2012
Local Lawton
Local Lawton - we come together to share hopes and concerns for our town. Local Lawton is a branch of Transition VB/A. We will meet at the Lawton Community Room (down the hall from the Library) from 3-5 pm.
October 13, 2012
Bangor Reskilling
Rita will be doing a workshop on "An Herbal First Aid Kit" at 10 a.m. at the Bangor Reskilling, Saturday from 10-4 (Corner of Walnut & Arlington, Bangor). Additional classes include: seed saving, alternative energy, chicken butchering, sauerkraut making, and preparing the garden for winter. Donations accepted. Lunch will be available.
July 8, 2012
Michigan Land Trustees Meeting
Potluck meal at 5 p.m. and meeting afterwards.
Location: 84757 28th Street, Lawton. All are welcome!
May 12, 2012, 2pm
Plant Walk at Stone Circle Farm
Plant Walk, 2 p.m. Come and learn what local and not so local edible and medicinal plants look like. Rita and Norm have identified over 100 plants on their 15 acres. Children are welcome. 27621 C.R. 352, Lawton MI 49065
April 22, 2012
Plant Walk
Rita and Norm will lead a Plant Walk at the Skyridge Church of the Brethren for their Earth Day service beginning at 9:30 a.m. Besides identifying edible wild food growing at the church, they will share their concerns regarding the need to include native plantings on our properties to support biodiversity.
March 10, 2012
Herbs and Wild Edible Plants
Rita will present this workshop at the Reskilling Workshops on Vegetable Gardening from 2:15 to 3:15 p.m. Sponsored by Transition Bangor and Community Education. To be held at the Community Education Center in Bangor at 12 N. Walnut Street. This will be a day-long event with numerous sessions on vegetable gardening including making compost, organic gardening, coping with weeds and insect pests, germinating seeds, etc. This is a "free" event. Contact the Community Education Center at 269-427-6800 ext. 2103 for more information.

2011

November 16: Wednesday, 7 p.m.
Seed Saving and Starting Seeds: There are many vegetables that you can save the seeds for use in next year’s garden. What kind of plants to save from; demonstration of various seeds saved; making sure the seeds are viable and not crossed from other similar types, etc. Starting seeds in the spring: tips on how to be successful.
October 19: Wednesday, 7 p.m.
Canning, Freezing, Drying and Root Cellars: Our grandmother’s canned many fruits and vegetables to last the whole year. Learn how to can with water bath and pressure canner. Includes a discussion of equipment and safe handling of all supplies. Keeping your garden produce in a root cellar or cool location - which vegetables are best; drying with a dehydrator, sun drying or oven drying. Freezing some vegetables/fruit &emdash; blanching or not; protecting fruit from losing its color.
September 21: Wednesday, 7 p.m.
Introduction to vegetable gardening: Why gardening is good for you; sustainable gardening-organic vs. conventional; soil testing and preparation; pest management, composting: how to make a good compost pile, using grass clippings and leaves around your flowers and trees. Worms &emdash; why they are important. Compost bins for the house.
July 11
Permaculture Gathering with potluck and discussion. Come and share your ideas and experiences with permaculture. We will begin at 4 p.m. with a tour of our 15 acres discussing some of our permaculture ideas. At 5 p.m. we will share a potluck meal and get into our discussion. All levels of permaculture experience are welcomed. Contact Rita & Norm Bober for directions and any questions at nbober@mwconnections.com.
June, July, August
Lawton Community Garden: on-going planting, weeding, mulching, watering, and harvesting. Workdays: Tuesday and Thursday, 6-8 pm, Saturdays: 10-2 pm.
March 22
Lawton Community Garden meeting, 7 PM, on-going monthly meeting. See February 22 for details.
March 5
Culinary Herbs are more than just flavoring — the herbs and spices in your kitchen are filled with healing ingredients. Rita will present at the American Red Cross Expo, 10:15 AM, at the Lawrence Conference Center, Lawrence, Michigan. All are welcome, no registration needed.
February 22
Lawton Community Garden meeting, 7 PM at St. Paul's United Methodist Church, 117 S. Franklin.. Monthly meeting of community members starting a local organic garden. Sharing the labor and the fruits of our labor with the community. All are welcome!
January 17
Lawton Community Garden Meeting, Monday, January 17 at 7:00 pm at St. Paul's United Methodist Church, 117 S. Franklin. Join with other community volunteers to begin defining what our Community Garden will look like. Lawton Transition Group and St. Paul's United Methodist Church working to help Lawton become more resilient.

2010

December 19
Join with the Miniss Kitigan Drum to celebrate Winter Solstice. Hear the Ojibwe Creation story. Learn how the Ancient Ones celebrated Winter Solstice. Enjoy a potluck with kindred spirits. For details email us at nbober@mwconnections.com.
December 5
Transition Van Buren/Allegan will gather on Sunday, December 5 at 10 AM for breakfast at the Conservation Club, 16681 41st Street, Bloomingdale (between CR 380 & 14 Ave). Come and meet folks and find out what is happening around our communities.
November 29 — December 3
Norm and friend Rich Smith will talk about what they have learned participating in the Tom Brown Tracker School, as well as how they have integrated those teachings with their experiences in the natural world. Program for Portage Central High School students who are reading Tom Brown's book, The Tracker.
October 25
Annual Transition VB/A Meeting. Check for details at the website: transitionvba.ning.com.
October 17
Garlic planting (1:00 PM) and Michigan Land Trustees meeting (5:00 PM). Maynard Kaufman's place in Bangor. Sunday, October 17th. See MLT website for details.
October 9
Transition VB/A presents Reskilling Workshops — Saturday from 1:30 to 5:00. Sponsored by Transition Van Buren-Allegan and Michigan Land Trustees.
1:30 Meet at Sunflower, 25485 C.R. 681, one mile north of the blinking light at M-43 and Center Street in Bangor. Phone 650-1758. A donation of $5.00 will be requested.
1:45 Brief introduction to the Reskilling idea by Barbara Geisler and Maynard Kaufman.
Workshops begin
on three neighboring farms
2:15 to 3:30
  • at Sunflower: Energy audit of off-grid house with Thom Phillips
  • at Eater's Guild: Cheesemaking with Laurie Arboreal
  • at Towne-Martindale residence: Value of Native Plants by Tom Small
3:45 to 5:00
  • at Sunflower: Dealing with emergencies by Lynne Farmer
  • at Eater's Guild: Fermentation with Shawna Greenway
  • at Towne-Martindale Residence: Permaculture gardening with Jon Towne
October 5
Medicinal Herbs. Portage Public Library, 6:30-8:00 PM. Rita will teach a class on plants that have medicinal properties as shared by past and present herbal practitioners. Traditions of healing, hazards, harvesting and storing will be discussed. Simple ways to use medicinal plants including teas, infusions, tinctures and salves will be demonstrated. Herbalism is the oldest form of healing — 80% of the world population still use herbs.
October 2
Solar Tour-Michigan Sustainable Home and Business Tour. Sponsored by the Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association. Saturday from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM. The tour highlights homes and businesses that incorporate solar and other renewable energy technologies. The Bobers are on the tour. Our home was built in 1989 and features a passive solar design with two-foot overhangs. It also features a 2kW pole-mounted photovoltaic system. The home also includes solar hot water, insulated concrete walls, Energy Star appliances, and many other energy-efficient features.
September 28
Moving Towards Resilience: One Step at a Time. Portage Public Library, 6:30-8:00 PM. Norm & Rita will be on a panel sharing how they are working towards self-reliance. Home gardening and preserving; solar passive housing, solar energy; transportation; local food; planting trees; reuse, renew & recycle are among the topics to be discussed.
September 19
Southwest Michigan Community Harvest Festival. See swmiharvestfest.org for details.
August 16, 1:30 – 3:00
Culinary Herbs with Rita Bober Culinary herbs are more than just flavoring — the herbs and spices you have in your kitchen are filled with healing ingredients. Learn the 15 most powerful culinary herbs and the many conditions for which they have proven useful. Find out what herbs will help you stay healthy and active as you age. Many can be grown in your garden or in pots. Using fresh and dried herbs will also be discussed. Presented at the Portage Senior Center (behind the Portage Public Library). All are welcome. Free. Register at 329-4555.
June 27 Update: July 11
Michigan Land Trustees Meeting and Garlic Harvesting. To be held at the Old Michigan Land Trust Farm, 24760 C.R. 681, Bangor, MI. Meeting at 5 PM, garlic harvesting at 3 PM.
June 27
Transition VanBuren/Allegan meeting & potluck. Maynard Kaufman's home at 25485 CR 681, Bangor (north on CR 681 off M-43, sign on right side of road says Sunflower Farm). Potluck starts at 4 PM.
June 12
Transition Van Buren/Allegan and Michigan Land Trustees (MLT) invite you to attend Reskilling: Building Community Self-Reliance. People living in communities of the past knew how to live with less energy consumption and close to the land. What self-sufficiency/homesteading practices do you know and what are you able to share or barter? We no longer have the basic knowledge our grandparents took for granted. How can we provide for ourselves and our community? Are you interested in growing your own food and preserving it? Are there edible wild foods you can eat and use for medicines? Want to have your own bees? How can you make your home more energy efficient? If you want to learn what some people are doing to conserve energy and live sustainably, join us:

When: June 12, 2010 from 1-5 PM
Where: 27621 C.R. 352, Lawton, Michigan — Stone Circle Center

For more information contact Rita or Norm at 269-624-5501 or visit the MLT website or transitionvba.ning.com. A $5 donation is suggested. Join us for the day to learn new skills and problem-solving, share our ideas and concerns, and enjoy supportive neighbors.

June 3
Firemaking. Norm and friend Rich Smith will be presenting a Firemaking class for Portage High School students. They will be teaching bow-drill fire making techniques. This is a follow-up to their session at the school sharing their experiences at the Tracker school with Tom Brown, Jr.
May 25
Herbal Class from 7-9 PM at Stone Circle Center. See January 28th for description of the class. Must be pre-registered.
May 16
Transition Van Buren/Allegan meeting, 4-6 PM. See transitionvba.ning.com for details.
May 4
Acorn Bread and Violet Jelly: Foraging for Wild Foods. Learn how to identify and prepare delicious foods from wild plants. Talk by Rita at the Portage Public Library. Tuesday, May 4th from 6:30‑8 PM. Co-sponsored by Fair Food Matters. Free; no registration required.
April 18
Transition Van Buren/Allegan meeting, 2-4 PM See transitionvba.ning.com for location.
April 18
Michigan Land Trustees meeting & potluck. 5 PM potluck with meeting to follow. At the home of Dennis Wilcox, Bangor.
April 16
Herbal Class from 4‑6 PM at Stone Circle Center. See January 28th for description of the class. Must be preregistered.
March 12
Herbal Class, from 4-6 PM at Stone Circle Center. See January 28th for description of the class. Must be preregistered.
March 9

Michigan Land Trustees (MLT) Community Potluck and Speakers Series presents The Power of Community: Are there lessons we can learn from one country's experience of a severely diminished oil supply? This is MLT's second program geared toward raising awareness and building resilient communities in SW Michigan.

The program will be held on Tuesday, March 9, 2010 at The Van Buren Conference Center, 490 S. Paw Paw St., Lawrence, Michigan from 5:30 to 9:30 PM.

After the potluck, we will view the DVD "Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil" with Dr. Ken Dahlberg (MLT) and Dr. Tom Kostrzewa (WMU) giving insights and observations about Cuba's experience and of local actions to prepare for an uncertain future. A question and answer period will follow.

Please bring a dish to pass, your own plates and silverware, and a willingness to network with your neighbors. Drinks will be provided. For more information contact Rita or Norm at 269-624-5501 or visit the MLT website.

March 7
Transition Van Buren/Allegan meeting and potluck, 4-6 PM. See transitionvba.ning.com for location.
January 31
Transition Van Buren/Allegan meeting. Community-level sustainability in a future of low-energy inputs. Meet with others working to inspire our communities to creatively and proactively design our future after peak oil. We will meet at the Bangor Cafe in the Bangor Depot Building on Sunday, January 31 from 4-6 PM. Check out the website: transitionvba.ning.com.
January 28
Herbal Classes — connecting with the spirit of the plants; philosophies of medicine; harvesting and making herbal preparations; learning various plants for different medicinal conditions; native foods and medicine; culinary herbs as medicine; wild edibles; etc. Meeting once a month on Thursday from 6-8 PM at Stone Circle Center. Share in the cost of products used. Call for more details or directions: 269-624-5501.
January 10
Michigan Land Trustees meeting, 5 PM. Potluck followed by quarterly meeting. Join us in revitalizing rural and urban communities, promoting responsible land use and the development of localized food and energy systems. Meeting to be held at the home of Ken Dahlberg, 2427 Kensington Drive, Kalamazoo. All are welcome.
January 3
Transition Van Buren/Allegan meeting and potluck, 4-6 PM. In the face of peak oil, climate change, and economic disruption, we are dedicated to building stronger, resilient, local communities in Van Buren and Allegan Counties. See transitionvba.ning.com for on-going events and data on meetings.

2009

December 19
Join with the Miniss Kitigan Drum to celebrate Winter Solstice. Hear the Ojibwe Creation story. Learn how the Ancient Ones celebrated Winter Solstice. Enjoy a potluck with kindred spirits. For details email us at: nbober@mwconnections.com.
November 30
Norm and friend Rich Smith will talk about what they have learned participating in the Tom Brown Tracker School, as well as how they have integrated those teachings with their experiences in the natural world. Program for Portage Central High School students who are reading Tom Brown's book, The Tracker.
November 12

Michigan Land Trustees (MLT) Community Potluck and Speaker

6:00 PM to 9:00 PM, Van Buren Conference Center, 490 S. Paw Paw St., Lawrence, Michigan. Please bring a dish to pass and your own dishes and silverware. Drinks will be provided.

Join us for an exciting evening of talk and discussion on the Transition Initiative: our communities' response to the challenges and opportunities of Peak Oil and Climate Change. We'll address the question: How do we as a community significantly increase our resilience as we adapt to the effects of less oil and drastically reduce carbon emissions in response to climate change? For information about MLT, see www.michiganlandtrust.org.

Directions: take I-94 to the Lawrence exit (No. 52), go north into town. Just past the Van Buren Intermediate School District offices, the Van Buren Conference Center is located on the left (west) side of the road. From the north, take Red Arrow Highway to Lawrence, turn south at the main intersection (Paw Paw St.), cross the railroad tracks, pass the post office and you will see the Van Buren Conference Center on the right.

October 18

Michigan Land Trustees Garlic Fundraiser — 2 PM.

We will meet at the Old Homesteading Farm, 24760 C.R. 681, Bangor, Michigan. Tel: 269-427-8791, email: tomar@btc-bci.com.

As part of our mission, we plan to support new and existing farmers using organic principals with micro-loans to help them establish their farms or to become locally viable in helping supply local food. Profits from the sale of the garlic will be used to support these micro-loans. Join us in planting our crop of garlic and become part of the bigger picture. After the garlic planting, the Michigan Land Trustees potluck and fall meeting will be held at 5 PM at the farm.

Directions: Take M-43 into Bangor to the only blinking light in town (C.R. 681, Center Street) — turn north, cross over the railroad tracks, drive up about 1 mile, the farm is on the left side of the road. The number (24760) is on the mailbox.

September 20
7th Annual Southwest Michigan Community Harvest Fest. Both Norm and Rita have been involved on the planning committee since it began in 2002. Join us for a fun-filled day with guest speakers, demonstrations, local vendors, food, and music. See www.swmiharvestfest.org for details. The Harvest Fest is held at Tillers International, Scotts, Michigan.
September 9
World Peace Gathering — Ripples of Fire on 09-09-09. As part of this World Peace Gathering, we will gather at sunrise to light a sacred peace fire. This date is the most significant date in the Irish calendar in 100 years. Ireland is the doorway and key to peace in all of Europe. We invite people from all over the world to light their own sacred fire wherever they are located. The Fire will travel around the world for 24 hours, being lit, at sunrise. This is part of the Peace Summit being held at Northeastern Illinois University. If you are awake and want to join us, we will be making a sacred fire on our farm at sunrise.
August 23

Michigan Land Trustees Farm/Land Tour: see June 28th for more details.

  1. Urban Community Organic Garden — Michael and Caren Kruk gardening while living in a condominium — 1:00 PM

    If coming from a distance, take I-94 and exit at Oakland, go north to Parkview, turn left (west) to Parkview Hills. Turn left onto Greenleaf Blvd. Road curves around then comes to a dead end. Go left on Old Field Trail about ½ mile — garden on the right.

  2. Backyard organic gardening in Portage — Jan Ryan — suburban living — 3:00 PM

    225 Crocket Ave., Portage. Off Westnedge between Melody and Parkland. Turn west off Westnedge onto Crocket, 4th house down, across from a church, address on the mail box.

    Organic garden, small greenhouse, natural pest management.

August 14-16
Weed Dance Weekend — Rita will be giving a talk on United Plant Savers. Started by Rosemary Gladstar, United Plant Savers is a non-profit, educational organization dedicated to the preservation of native medicinal plants. The intent is to assure the increasing abundance of the medicinal plants which are presently in decline due to expanding popularity and shrinking habitat and range. Come and learn about these at-risk plants and how to help preserve our herbal future. Go to www.weeddancefarm.com for details on attending this women's weekend held in Gobles, Michigan.
July 26

Michigan Land Trustees Farm/Land Tour: see June 28th for more details.

  1. Blue Dog Greens — Dennis Wilcox & Genevieve Mallek — 1:00 PM

    130 Hastings Court. Take 43 to the blinking light in Bangor (C.R. 681), turn right going north across railroad tracks, turn right at the 2nd street past the tracks, about 200 feet the road curves to the right, turn left before the curve at the first gravel driveway, about 900 ft. drive curves to the right and crosses the tracks, follow drive to new house.

    A small certified organic produce farm. Bare pastureland when purchased in 2002, it was previously operated by Maynard Kaufman (the 3rd stop on the day's tour) under The School of Homesteading and certified organic since 1973. With a life goal of being more self-reliant, they are finishing work on their passive-solar, off-grid farmhouse.

  2. The Old MLT farm — Jon Towne & Bobbi Martindale — 2:30 PM

    24760 C.R. 681 north of Bangor (on the left side of road) (tomar@btc-bci.com)

    36 Acres — pasture raised cows, ponds, permaculture setting, organic garden, variety of trees

  3. Sunflower Farm — Maynard Kaufman & Barbara Geisler — 4:00 PM

    25485 C.R. 681 just down the road from the Old MLT farm

    Organic garden, grapes, pond, hay fields, solar-wind powered, off-the-grid home.

    Maynard has taught organic gardening through the School of Homesteading and has years of farming experiences.

June 28

Michigan Land Trustees Farm/Land Tour: Join us to learn about our connection with the land, plants and animal life and the environment. Michigan Land Trustees is dedicated to revitalizing rural and urban communities by promoting responsible land use and the development of localized food and energy systems. Board members would like to share with others how they are accomplishing these efforts on their own properties. Come and ask questions. Learn what went well and what needed to be fixed. This is the first in a series to take place this summer.

  1. Dancing Turtle Farm — Ron & Soo Klein — 16 acres — 1:00 PM

    9721 - 6th St., in Texas Township between RS and S (rdklein@net-link.net)

    Example of a farm with close neighbors, MAEAP-certified. Grass/browse fed goats, home dairy, aged raw goat cheeses, greenhouse, ponds, ducks, bees (apiary, natural queen rearing), chickens, turkeys, llamas, organic gardens.

  2. Stone Circle Farm — Norm & Rita Bober — developing a wildlife habitat. — 3:00 PM

    27621 C.R. 352, south of Lawton between M-40 and C.R. 652 (nbober@mwconnections.com)

    Sharing 15 acres with wildlife and domesticated animals, 2 acres prairie, organic garden, orchard, nut trees, fruit, solar/passive house, solar water, animals include chickens and meat goats, identify wild edible foods on the land.

  3. Phillips Place — Mike & Lisa Phillips — 11 acres — 4:00 PM

    We will walk to the Phillips from the Bober's place.

    Solar passive home with grey water system, small organic orchard and garden, bees, woods (maple trees), pond, chickens and a home business.

May 15
Family Fun Day. In times past it was a traditional practice to hold Spring games and contests and in that way teach needed skills for survival and hunting to the young people. Join with the Miniss Kitigan Drum to share this fun day with families and friends. There is overnight camping on the land, sharing of meals and Ojibway prayers. Come overnight or just for the day. Email us for additional information or further details.
April 19
Spring Nature Awareness Gathering. We meet at the Blanche Hull Reserve at 1:00 PM Correction: 8:30 AM, parking on South Burdick, north of Kilgore. Date changed because of Easter. The trees are budding, plants are poking out of the ground, birds have returned for the season — join us to explore all of these as we walk the trails of the Preserve.
March 1
March was that time of year when Native Peoples began their Maple Sugar Camps and the collecting of maple sap. Join with us to hear the story of how The People learned about Maple sugar as told by Norm. We will also learn how to tap trees and gather our own maple sap. A potluck dinner will follow. Contact us for details at nbober@mwconnections.com.
February 15
Rita will facilitate a "Spirit of the Wind" ritual on connecting ourselves to the Earth and each other at Raham women's spirituality group. At the People's Church, 1758 North 10th Street in Kalamazoo (off West Main, go north). At 7:00 PM — all women are welcome.
February 13-14
T.E.A.M. (Teachers of Experiential and Adventure Methodology) — Norm & I will be in Chicago at the T.E.A.M. conference at Northeastern Illinois University
February 8
Nature Awareness & Survival Group — We are meeting at Blanche Hull Reserve — parking on south Burdock, north of Kilgore — tracking and mapping — monthly meetings — 1:00 PM.
January 11
Nature gathering — winter weather gathering: explore building snow lodges, tracking and other outdoor activities, primitive fire making. Join together to learn survival skills.

2008

December 20
Join with the Miniss Kitigan Drum to cerebrate Winter Solstice. Hear the Ojibwe Creation story. Learn how the Ancient Ones celebrated Winter Solstice. Enjoy a potluck with kindred spirits. Email us for details.
December 8
Norm and friend Rich Smith will talk about what they have learned participating in the Tom Brown Tracker School as well as how they have integrated those teachings with their experiences in the natural world to students at Portage Central High. Students are reading Tom Brown's book, The Tracker.
December 7
Nature Awareness local group — We will be meeting about once a month to learn wilderness awareness skills such as plant and tree identification, animal tracking, shelter building, fire making, etc. Today we meet at the Blanchall Reserve at 1:00 in the parking lot. We will be identifying trees and, with the snow, possibly animal tracks. Anyone can join us. Email us for details.
Page updated 23 Jun 2015