Monday, January 23, 2017

Weekly Events & Opportunities: Healthy Farms Conference Week!

2017 Healthy Farms Conference

Plan to attend the Healthy Farms Conference of the Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society. The dates for 2017 are January 27th & 28th and it will be held at the  Columbus Ramada & Rivers Edge Conference Center in Columbus. This years conference features over 30 breakout sessions aimed at providing resources and laying the foundation for farmers, aspiring farmers and beginning farmers to farm.  We'll also have over 30 exhibitors showcasing the latest ideas, products and resources available.  


This year we feature two dynamic keynotes to provide inspirtation and motivation for your farming adventures. Longtime sustainable agriculture advocate John Ikerd will provide a keynote on Friday morning of the conference.  Sustainable farmer and advocateGreg Gunthorp will provide a keynote on Saturday during the conference.  Find more information about them by visiting,

Breakout Sessions

With sessions ranging from Holistic Management Grazing to Organic Weed Control using a Flamer and Crimper, and Holistic Sheep & Goat Production to Understanding Soil Health, we have sessions for everyone.  A complete list can be found on the website. Breakouts begin Friday morning at 10:30 and conclude on Saturday afternoon at 4pm.  Find the complete list of breakout sessions including bios and abstracts at

Social Media

Find conference info like breakout sessions, exhibitors, All-Nebraska Evening, etc on the NSAS Blog! The Hashtag for the conference is #2017HFC. You can find complete postings by following that link or visiting the conference event page on Facebook


There are several options for lodging including 2 level suites. To make a reservation call, 402-564-1492. Rivers Edge lodging includes a complimentary breakfast, fitness center, family rooms, and a pool that includes a family friendly water park. For the group rate, rooms should be reserved under the "Healthy Farms Conference" block.

Register today!

Online registration is still open and will stay open until Thursday. Pre-registering allows us to plan and provide conference programs and materials with a more accurate count. It also allows the chef and staff at the conference site to prepare and adjust accordingly. If you have not registered and plan to attend please do so today! Register!

NSAS Memberships

Enjoy the List Serv? Like supporting sustainable and organic farming and foods? We need your support! Now is the best time to join or renew your NSAS Membership.At conference time we offer a reduced membership rate and we encourage everyone to sign up or renew today! Email Jo Lowe for details, or follow the conference registration page.


Another highlight of the conference is the trade show featuring businesses, farms, and organizations from across Nebraska & the Midwest. This is an opportunity to see the latest research, tools, and other opportunities for the journey. This year we have over 30 exhibitors and you can find more information about them by visiting,

Conference Program

Featuring photos from NSAS members across the state, the program is your year round resource to sustainable and organic farming & foods.  The program provides detailed information about this years conference!


A majority of foods for the conference have been sourced locally, and features several NSAS members.  We'll also have fair trade and organic coffee that was locally roasted in Lincoln at the Mill. Farms that contributed foods include; Prairie Pride Poultry, Erstwhile Farm, Farm2Fork Ranch, Straight Arrow Bison, Grain Place Foods, Lincoln Neighbors Urban Farm, Clear Creek Organic Farms, Omaha Home for Boys, & Back Alley Bakery.

The RoundTables

Always great conversations the roundtables will once again be held on Saturday morning of the conference. We'll let you sleep in and won't start the roundtables until 8am!  Topics this year so far include: Homeopathy for your Farm, Value Added Producer Grants, Farm Service Agency Program & Opportunities, Solar Vermicomposting, Financial & Technical Assistance with NRCS, USDA Farm Service Agency Programs, Homeopathy for Your Farm, Resources & Opportunities for Veterans in Agriculture, and Seeds GMO/Non GMO! If you have a topic you'd like included, nothing is to small, go to the NSAS website and follow the link for more information

All-Nebraska Evening

A highlight for many that attend is the All-Nebraska Evening.  The events begin Friday evening with the Beer, Wine & Cheese reception followed with a Live Auction Fundraiser for NSAS. Special thanks to Auction Solutions Inc for auctioneering once again! Followed by a dinner with a majority of foods sourced locally and capped off with entertainment from Ted & Alice Miller! 
Nebraska Beer, Wine & Cheese Reception

The All-Nebraska Evening is preceded by this reception. This year we'll feature several local Nebraska breweries as well as some old favorites.  Boiler Brewing, Infusion Brewery & Upstream Brewery will all contribute beers. As will Thunderhead from Kearney once again.  We will have wines from Glacial Till Vineyard. And Clear Creek Organic Farms will provide cheeses. The reception will begin at 4pm in Suite 101. Willcontinue after the dinner & entertainment in the same room. 

Conference Sponsors!

A special thanks to all of our conference sponsors! Grain Place FoodsRoberts Seed, Blue River Hybrids, the Nebraska Food Coop, Rincon Vitova, OCIA #1 & College of Public Health Central States Center for Agricultural Safety & Health. With support from our sponsors we are able to provide a back to our roots conference as well as numerous events & activities including scholarships for youth programming!

Youth Sessions

Youth 10 & under are free!  We also have scholarships for FFA, 4-H, or other students interested in Agriculture. Sessions include: Herbs for Kids, How to Start an Organic Garden, Permaculture Earth Repair for Kids, Identfying Insects, And more! Find the complete schedule & details on the NSAS website


Each year we hold two fundraising auction at the conference. The Live Auction is on Friday during the All-Nebraska events. And the Silent Auction is on Saturday. Both are perfect opportunities to support NSAS, either by bidding and purchasing or by donating items for the cause.  Donating items is a great way to showcase your farm or a special talent such as woodworking or a special product.  If you have a donation please email William at

Special Thanks!

Each year we have numerous individuals and groups step up and collaborate on the conference. Board member Brent Lubbert put together the conference program. Liz Sarno and the folks at the Big Garden helped coordinate the youth program.  Gene Gauge coordinated the coffee. Numerous farms contributed foods for the conference, and much more.  Please be sure to thank all of these folks!

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