News from IL Organic Growers Association: Upcoming Summer/Fall Field Days

We are excited to share with you the 2013 Summer/Fall Field Days that are now available for registration.  Providing an array of learning opportunities, these field days will cover a wide variety of beneficial topics. See here for more detailed descriptions.

SIU STUDENT FARM AND FIELD TO FORK TOUR
Saturday, June 15, 8:00-10:00 am
SIU Center for Sustainable Farming, Carbondale, IL

Organized and operated only by volunteers, the Local Organic Gardening Initiative of Carbondale (LOGIC) has raised beds, a hoop house, and permaculture site. Visit the center for a tour of their work, followed by a visit to one of Carbondale’s two Farmers’ Markets! Cost is free. Pre-registration is requested here, but walk-ins are welcome.

GROWING YOUR SUSTAINABLE FARM BUSINESS: A PRODUCER’S PERSPECTIVE
Saturday, July 13, 3:00-7:00 pm
Living Waters Farm, Strawn, IL & South Pork Ranch, Chatsworth, IL (Livingston County)

Beginning the afternoon at Living Waters Farm in Strawn, IL, see a variety of vegetable farming methods. After your visit at Living Waters Farm, you will travel to South Pork Ranch in Chatsworth, IL to see animal production. Learn how these two farms have thrived by working together with other local producers, and then branching out to become independent, successful businesses.

You can register here.  Cost is free to CISFN members, $5 for non-members.

MANY SEAONS WEATHERED: TOURS OF TWO VETERAN ORGANIC FARMS
Sunday, July 21, 1:00-5:30 pm
Tomahnous Farm, Mahomet, IL & Blue Moon Farm, Urbana, IL

Have the opportunity to to tour the farms of two 15-year veterans, Lisa Haynes of Tomahnous Farm and Jon Cherniss of Blue Moon Farm, providing you an overview of their planning, management and marketing approaches. Cost is free. Pre-registration is requested but walk-ins are welcome.

GRASS-FED BEEF, ROW CROPS AND POULTRY
Thursday, August 27, 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Sandy Ridge Farm, Tampico, IL (Whiteside County)

MOSES, in collaboration with IOGA and the University of Illinois, joins the Shrock family on a tour of more than 1,200 acres of row crops and two livestock operations. They will share how they manage their crops and improve soil quality to achieve high yields and a quality product.

You can register here.  Cost is $30 if you pre-register, $40 for onsite registration, and includes lunch served by the Shrock family. The deadline for pre-registration is August 23.

TRANSITIONING TO ORGANIC CORN AND SOYBEANS: A FIRST-HAND LOOK
Saturday, September 7, 1:00-4:30 pm
Two Roads Farm, Assumption, IL (Christian County)

Just starting with our with organic corn and soybean production, considering making the transition to organic, or just wanting to know more about what is involved? Gary McDonald, Director of Organic Resource Advisor, will provide a practical “how to” on moving from conventional to organic production of corn and soybeans. Hear from a farmer panel that will give their first-hand experiences of moving to organic production and be available for questions from the audience. Cost is free. Pre-registration is requested but walk-ins are welcome.

VEGETABLE DIVERSIFICATION
Monday, September 16, 12:30 – 4:30 pm
PrairiErth Farm, Atlanta, IL (Logan County)

Get all of the information you need to take your farm to the next step. PrairiErth Farm produces vegetables, poultry, beef, pigs, and variety of value-added products. See how farming can be a viable career opportunity, while learning to build synergy between diverse production systems, enticing customers with a wide range of products.

You can register here.  Cost is free.

TAKING YOUR FARM TO THE NEXT LEVEL: EQUIPMENT FOR SCALING UP PRODUCTION
Saturday, September 21, 1:45-4:30 pm
PrairiErth Farm, Atlanta, IL (Logan County)

Want to know what it takes to scale up production on your farm with equipment? Hans Bishop of PrairiErth Farm will showcase specialty crops equipment that he uses to reduce hand work, improve efficiency, and employee job satisfaction.

You can register here. Cost is free to CISFN members, $5 for non-members.