Annual Tree Planting: Expanding the Food Forest
We’ll continue our tradition of planting trees at the Jam by adding more diversity to the Camp Sedalia food forest. Learn planting techniques, food forest design methodology, and have fun creating more food, habitat, and beauty while learning how to do the same at home.
Holistic Management Herd Hike
Ben will lead his annual herd hike where we will walk through the farm to the cows while he edifies us in the subtle art of managing animals holistically to heal the land, water cycle, and farm ecosystems—how a well managed herd can be a force of immense good.
Ted Falls of Wheats Valley Apiary and Beekeeping Services will explain how he keeps bees and why, elaborating on his biodynamic beekeeping techniques and approaches.
The Bioregional Soul of Agriculture
Jason Myers-Benner is a home garden farmer and lifelong agriculture nerd. Though he claims to have made generalism his specialty, he and his family (wife, Janelle, and daughters, Kali, Alida and Terah) have settled in to focusing on learning to gain their dietary needs from their own six acres of soil and selecting animal and plant strains that are well suited to those needs in that place. The desire to do this grows from personal fascination with agricultural processes combined with the goal of finding a just way of living.
Whether you are a farmer, an eater, or anyone else involved in contemporary food systems (which is essentially all of us), it is important to take some time and give careful thought to how those systems are working, and what might need to change. What might there be to lose? What might there be to gain? Particularly, what are the cultural, economic, political, social, and ecological implications of the necessary transformation of our food systems to truly sustainable models? In this session Jason will facilitate conversation spurred by the group’s consideration of excerpts chosen by participants from some writing he has done on these topics (http://tanglywoods.com/)
Birding the Restored Landscape
Bob Epperson is a long time birder, an avian field ecologist, and the Field Trip Leader for the Lynchburg Bird Club. He will provide an introduction to birding, and lead an informative bird walk on the property. Over 78 bird species have been observed at Mountain Run Farm during the past year. This restored landscape attracts higher numbers and more species of birds compared with the typical mechanized farm with its manicured fields and denuded fence rows. At Mountain Run Farm, the lush fields of native grasses and wildflowers support meadowlarks, grasshopper sparrows, indigo buntings… and what other bird life? Join the walk to find out, and to observe the relationships between birds and their habitats. The fall migration will be in full swing, and will provide an opportunity to see birds that may visit the farm as a refueling stopover during their southbound journey.
The workshop will begin with a brief overview of birding basics, including equipment and use, resources, and identification skills. We will then bird the property with an emphasis on finding a variety of birds while observing bird behavior and habitat use in particular. Plan to meet at 7:00 a.m. at Camp Sedalia to begin our birding tour of the farm. Binoculars are highly recommended. Also, bring water and wear sturdy shoes for walking about 1-2 miles of mowed paths and field roads, portions of which may be wet depending on rainfall.
Learn to Scythe
Scythes are ancient, powerful, and simple tools, used the world over for mowing hayfields, meadows, yards, and more. There’s an ever-growing resurgence of using scythes in the modern world as a way to reduce fossil fuel reliance, indulge in simple pleasures, and as a very practical and efficient tool for managing all kinds of vegetation to simply mow, make hay, create mulch, and manage weeds.
Mark will teach a small group the art of mowing with a scythe. This will be a hands-on class covering the basics of owning and using a scythe, instruction in appropriate form and technique, with plenty of time to get lost in the joy of mowing with this simple tool. Learn to enjoy mowing as a meditative exercise!
Fascinating Fungus: An Intro to The Unseen World of Mycology
Adam is one of three VDACS approved wild mushroom harvesters and has been cultivating and foraging mushrooms for over 10 years. Join him to learn about proper mushroom I.D. and the many culinary and medicinal virtues of mushrooms. Weather dependent, hopefully there will be plenty of mushrooms to see.
The Nature of Art
Join Alika in an expressive art workshop that connects art with nature. We will use natural materials and paint to make something that inspires you. This class will bring out your inherent creative skills while providing space for artistic exploration, mindfulness and reflection. She believes that everyone is an artist inside and will help inspire the courage to bring it out.
Acornicopia’s Circus Quercus: What’s Nuts?
What’s nuts is the idea that we can begin to transition to perennially plant based diets utilizing the beautiful native hardwood trees that make our region’s environment so pleasurable to live in. The Acornucopia Project is gearing up for the Fall foraging season and trying to get as many nuts as possible. The A.P. is a worker owned cooperative, and to cooperate with these workers is as easy as learning how to I.D. nut trees, observing them, knowing which trees can be profitably foraged, and how to care for the nuts post harvest, and get them to the nut depot asap. Come to Mountain Run Jam to learn about the diversity and value of the native nut trees we have, how we can make the four major commodities oil, flour, dairy, and meat from them, simple tools needed for efficient harvesting and techniques, and what to do with them afterwards.
This Fall the Acornucopia Project is buying acorns, hickories, chestnuts, and hazels. So bring us your nuts at Mountain Run Jam. Come out and learn which ones can give you the most return, bringing nutritious local food back to our community, sequestering wealth, water, soil, and carbon with minimal inputs and no chemicals! Why settle for a world that is only partially nuts when we can have one that is completely nuts!
Wild Food Plant Walk
Mark will lead a group across Camp Sedalia to explore the various wild food plants available for harvest in the fall. Learn about plant I.D. and how to harvest, process, and prepare these amazing plant foods.
Blacksmithing with Bill Mauser
Weather permitting, Bill Mauser will be working his mobile forge throughout the weekend. Watch him make all sorts of useful and beautiful things from metal.
Join John Hoskins on Saturday between for our annual cider pressing! Learn about the process of turning apples into fresh juice, and enjoy a taste!
Seek out Doug Macleod Friday afternoon through Saturday morning to learn about the ancient art of flint knapping, cordage making, bow and arrows and more.
Grandfather’s Pipe Ceremony
Bill Howard will be leading Grandfather’s pipe ceremony, passed down through the Tracker School, Sunday at 6pm to close out the jam. Don’t miss this unique opportunity!
Observe Mark Angelini and Mike Hanna as they turn beautiful trees into functional, wooden spoons. They’ll be doing spots of demos Saturday and Sunday throughout the day.
2018 Healing Arts
Yoga with Shannon
Awaken your body and mind with a moderately vigorous flow. Postures will be challenging, but accessible, with modifications for all levels. Invigorating the body with the breath and proper alignment will help you to journey inward and cultivate a sense of stillness. This will support your efforts to be fully present, maximizing your time and energy amidst all of the weekend activities.
Come and join Master Teasley’s open Tai Chi class for beginners and advanced at 9 am on Saturday!