EVENTS

Upcoming 2024

SOIL FEST // JULY 27

Soil Fest at White Feather Farm is returning! Join us for the Third Annual Soil Fest on July 27th in Saugerties, NY, starting at 11:30 am. Reserve your tickets today!

Carbon Sponge will be leading a workshop from 11:30-1pm that includes: communing with microbes, learning how to design a carbon sponge, demonstration of the Carbon Sponge Kit and a visit to the sorghum field (with a tasty sorghum snack in hand, of course!).

This is a free workshop but you must reserve a spot. Stay for the other workshops, USDA’s Soil Shop, alternative grain beer tasting, foraging feast, music, food truck and more! Hope to see you there!




More to come! We have exciting events in the works for 2024. Check back here or follow us on Instagram to be in the loop!

2023

Seed Saving: Biodiversity, Cultural Preservation and Climate Resiliency 
August 25 + 26, 2023
White Feather Farm, Saugerties, NY

Panel: August 25 7:00pm (free, reseve tickets)
Workshop; August 26 10:30am ($20, reserve tickets)

Vivien Sansour,  founder of the Palestine Heirloom Seed Library

Panel:
Seed saving is an age-old tradition that is both practical and economical, yet in today’s world it is also has urgent cultural, political and existential implications. White Feather Farm hosts a roundtable conversation to explore the “why” of seed saving with plant breeder and organizer Nate Kleinman (Experimental Farm Network), artist researcher Vivien Sansour (Palestine Heirloom Seed Library) and farmer organizer Craig Jon Marcklinger (Sweet Freedom Farm, Wild Amaranth Projects), moderated by Brooke Singer (Carbon Sponge, WFF’s Director of Farm Innovation). Each presenter will discuss their personal connection to seeds and the stories they tell, as well as address the larger systemic issues that seed saving engages.

Workshop:
The day following the roundtable, “Seed Saving: Biodiversity, Cultural Preservation and Climate Resiliency,” Nate Kleinman of the Experimental Farm Network will lead us through the practice of seed saving with a thorough overview of topics like seed types, pollination, isolation, harvesting, processing, storage and libraries. The workshop will provide useful information for people who want to start seed saving or those who want to expand an existing library. There will be hands-on demonstration with different crops that are in season too.

Bios:

Nate Kleinman was born in Philadelphia. He graduated Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in 2004. He worked in a wide range of jobs, from landscaper to spotlight operator to office manager before realizing he needed to pursue a life of activism. Since then he has mainly worked in politics and organizing, though he quit his last “real job” in 2012 (as an organizer with the Service Employees International Union). He is grateful to be able to consider himself equal parts farmer and organizer today. As a volunteer, Nate has been involved in efforts ranging from the Sudan Freedom Walk campaign to Occupy Sandy. He helped found InterOccupy.net, an open communication platform for activists. He ran for U.S. Congress in 2012 and was called “the first Occupy candidate” by Politico. He has served on the Executive Board of the Project for Nuclear Awareness (PNA), the Cumberland County (NJ) Long Term Recovery Group, the Jewish Social Policy Action Network (JSPAN), and GMO Free PA. He started the Baederwood Cultural Heritage Garden Project in 2009, his first experiment with networked seed-saving. He is a member of the Seed Advisory Committee of the Non-GMO Project. As a plant breeder and experimenter, Nate has a broad range of interests, but he is most excited at the moment by sorghum, chestnuts, perennial kale, mayapples (Podophyllum), Crambes, and currants (Ribes). He co-founded the Experimental Farm Network in 2013 to create an open-source platform for facilitating collaboration in plant breeding and other agricultural research on an unpredented scale. The ultimate aim of EFN is to develop new crops and systems for climate change mitigation.


Craig Jon Marcklinger farms for the future of food security and sovereignty by decentralizing seed access and radically diversifying the crop genetics in his fields. He was born in Ohio to a family of Western New Yorkers and he spent formative years in New Jersey, Miami and Haiti. Jon honors his learning lineage with beloved Haitians, who schooled him in resistance and true peasant agriculture during his time in Haiti and as an organizer in South Florida’s refugee community. A fluent speaker of Caribbean Spanish and Haitian Kreyòl he spent three years hosting a local radio show as part of his organizing work. After years working on farms in Kansas, South Florida and Maryland, Jon landed in the Hudson Valley, NY and has spent the last four years in collaboration with Jalal Sabur and the farmers of Sweet Freedom Farm. Jon now runs the Wild Amaranth Projects based in Germantown, NY. Wild Amaranth’s mission is to bring long term food security to the Northeast through the development and dissemination of low-input, genetically diverse staple crop seeds, and holds a future goal of developing a community seed cleaning facility and mill.


Vivien Sansour is an artist, researcher, and writer. She uses installations, images, sketches, film, soil, seeds, and plants to enliven old cultural tales in contemporary presentations and to advocate for seed conservation and the protection of agrobiodiversity as a cultural/political act. Vivien founded the Palestine Heirloom Seed Library in 2014, where she works with farmers in Palestine and around the world. As an extension of this project, she created The Traveling Kitchen, a social engagement project aimed at bringing to the forefront conversations about climate crisis, food politics, and the imagining of new worlds.  Her work as an artist and scholar has been showcased internationally. As a writer, Vivien has written for magazines such as E-fluxx, Mold Magazine, and The Forward, where she was featured as a food columnist. An enthusiastic cook, Vivien works to bring threatened varieties “back to the dinner table to become part of our living culture rather than a relic of the past.” This work has led her to collaborate with award-winning chefs, including Anthony Bourdain and Sammi Tamimi. A former Harvard University Fellow, Vivien is currently the Distinguished Artistic Fellow at Bard College where she premiered her art performance, “The Belly is A Garden."





Soil Fest + Upstate Art Weekend
July 21 – 23, 2023
White Feather Farm, Saugerties, NY


Lisa Schonberg + Allie Wist’s “Sensory Kinship of the Third Kind”

Soil Fest is a three day celebration of soil at White Feather Farm in Saugerties, NY. This second annual festival includes live performances, workshops and food intersecting art, science and ecology. Performing live are the Dust Bowl Faeries, Arm of the Sea Puppet Theater and Lisa Schonberg. There will be artist-led workshops with Claire Pentecost, Brooke Singer and Allie Wist. Experience making biochar with Bill Hilgendorf and tasting alternative grain beers with Kevin VanBlarcum of West Kill Brewing. Local harvest veggie fermentation and sorghum dosa making with Atina Foods. Food provided by La Ruta del Sol.

 
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Illustrations by Corey Cavagnolo
Photographs by Jess Giacobbe, Miles Dubois and Brooke Singer