Sunday, September 12, 2010

“Farm, Field and Forest” a “Teach-In” with a Message September 25 in Orange, MA

“Farm, Field and Forest” a “Teach-In” with a Message September 25 in Orange

“Farm, Field and Forest: Living with the Land,” scheduled for September 25 is both a celebration of sustainable, local economies past and present, and a “Teach-In” with speakers, panel discussions, and demonstrations. The day-long event will take place in two near-by locations – the Orange Town Hall, 6 Prospect Street, starting at 9:00 am – and The White Elephant Yoga Studio, 19 East Main Street, Orange, MA where doors will open at noon. The day’s activities are free and open to the public.

The Orange Town Hall will be where people can learn about activities as varied as fishing for food, spinning wool, trailblazing, ecotourism, conservation and renewable energy, but also develop an understating of the science behind sustainable, eco-friendly forest and farm management and how these activities have been practiced from pre-colonial days to the present.

For example, following the keynote address at 1:00 pm on 17th century land-based practices by Native Americans, David King, a local wildlife expert, will discuss the habitat relationships of wildlife in managed forests, with a focus on birds and native pollinators. This will include a discussion of the effects of forestry on these species. King has a Master’s and Ph.D in Wildlife Biology from the University of Massachusetts and has also worked extensively with migrant birds on their wintering grounds in the tropics.

Spinning wool demonstrations
The White Elephant will be the cultural heart of “Farm, Field and Forest” with an art and photography exhibit, entertainment by performers Adam Bergeron and Diane Lincoln, and talks by Quabbin Valley author Elizabeth Peirce, starting at 2:00 pm, and North Quabbin author Allen Young, at 3:00 pm. The White Elephant activities are scheduled between noon and 5:00 pm.

"Farm, Field and Forest: Living with the Land" is organized by Genevieve Fraser, a former exhibits developer for the New England Science Center and environmental technical writer who was awarded an Environmental Commendation for her work on Massachusetts Acid Rain Awareness events. In 1997, she was commissioned by the Commonwealth to write the EcoTheater drama, "Giants in the Wilderness with John Muir" as part of the 100th Anniversary of the Massachusetts Forest and Park System.

The schedule for “Farm, Field and Forest” at the Orange Town Hall includes a 9:00 am workshop on sustenance hunting and fishing; 10:00 am, trailblazing and ecotourism; 11:00 am, sustainable energies and conservation; 1:00 pm, keynote address on Native Americans with Dr. Jack Dempsey; 2:00 pm, wildlife forest habitat with David King; 3:00 pm, Herm Eck - DCR Quabbin forest management; 3:30 pm, panel discussion on the need for sustainable forest management; 4:00 pm, Steve Alves, "Food for Change" story of the food coop movement; 4:30 pm, sustainable farming panel discussion; 5:00 pm, Feed Northampton - municipal food security; 5:30 pm, panel discussion on building sustainable, environmentally friendly, land-based economies, including the continued role of mature industries such as paper and lumber manufacturing.

The MA Department of Conservation and Recreation Forester Licensing Board has determined that a total of 7 continuing forestry education credits can be offered to licensed foresters and timber harvesters who attend. For further information, visit or contact Genevieve Fraser at (978) 544-1872.

PHOTO:  Herm Eck - Quabbin Forester
PHOTO CREDITS - Genevieve Fraser

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