Decorah Area Chamber of Commerce - Event Information
Homesteading Weekend Workshop
Art Performances & Education Calendar
Whether you live on a city plot or acres of land, learn new homesteading skills and become better stewards of your land. Attend the Eagle Bluff Homesteading Weekend Workshop and learn how to manage a beehive, graft fruit tress, cultivate mushrooms, or start an organic garden. These workshops have something for everyone.
Register for the entire weekend or individual classes.
So You Want to be a Beekeeper?
Saturday March 9, 2019 9am-4:30pm
What’s all the buzz about? Join this in-depth beekeeping class to find out! You’ll get an extensive look at what it means to be a beekeeper through a presentation and hands-on learning. You’ll have an opportunity to work with hives (minus the bees). The first half of the day will cover beekeeping terminology, biology of bees, pests and diseases, and beekeeping equipment. The second half of the day will include buying bees, hive and pest management, winter preparation, extracting honey, and working with beekeeping equipment. At the end of this class you will have a better understanding of what it takes to be an effective beekeeper.
Instructors: Chris Schad (The Bee Shed) – is a biologist by training, with several peer-reviewed papers published in scientific journals. Several years ago he turned his attention to prairie restoration and other ways to support local pollinators such as honey bees. He manages bees on his rural Rochester, MN property plus on other sites in the region.
John Shonyo (The Bee Shed) – has been beekeeping since 2009 in Oronoco Township. Up until the merger with The Bee Shed he owned and operated Bee’s Knees Honey Farm. He has been a honey bee advocate giving presentations to community groups, schools, and service organizations about how important the honey bee is to our food supply and what people can do to help keep a healthy bee population.
Beginning Organic Gardening
Sunday March 10, 2019 9am-1pm
Designed for the beginner, this class will give you the basics of plant biology in simple terms. We’ll also discuss how to prepare your growing places, and how to choose the best garden for you. Upon completion of this class, you’ll have a list of possible produce to grow tailored to your own particular space and to the amount of time you want to devote to your garden.
Instructor: Sarah Hansen – has been married to her best friend and fellow enthusiast for over 20 years. Together they are the parents of 13 healthy and vibrant children. They work, play, learn, grow, eat, camp, and explore together on 13 acres in rural Minnesota. Sarah grew up in the country, learning life skills such as gardening, butchering, preserving, cooking, and living naturally. During her years as a wife and mother, she’s added bee-keeping, herbal medicine and home education to her list of joys. In the second third of her life, she plans to continue her love of music and fitness, and hopes to expand her base of organic gardening practices and experiencing adventures with her husband and kids.
Shiitake Mushroom Cultivation
Sunday March 10, 2019 2-5pm
Are you interested in growing one of the most popular mushrooms consumed world-wide? This class helps you get started and sends you home with knowledge, handouts, and an inoculated shiitake log. You will learn how to select shiitake logs, choose spawn, use equipment, and more! Class begins with a presentation and then relocates to inoculate logs. Growing and marketing considerations will be discussed.
Instructor: Joe Deden is the former Executive Director of Eagle Bluff Environmental Learning Center in Lanesboro Minnesota. As a child he spent time in the woods with his maternal grandfather who shared his love for especially wildflowers. He even attempted to teach him their Latin names. He was Hay Creek township’s version of Thoreau. The love for nature stuck and giving that opportunity to other children has been Joe’s life mission. He believes we have to share our passion for nature with others, make it infectious and something everyone wants and does. In his free time he enjoys sustainable living, gardening, biking, wild edibles, ecotourism, Ethnobotony and food preservation.
Fruit Tree Grafting and Orchard Care
Saturday March 9, 2019 9am-12pm & 1-4pm
Sunday March 10, 2019 9am-12pm & 1-4pm
This class will teach you how to graft your own apple tree to take home as well as how to care for your trees from planting till harvest. Topics will include rootstock selection, pruning basics and creating habitat that will insure pollination of your new ‘orchard’. The course will provide semi-dwarf rootstocks, a selection of heirloom apple varieties to choose from as well the materials to make your own grafts. This is a hands-on class for all skill levels.
Instructor: Dan Bussey grew up in the middle of his family’s farm orchard in Wisconsin and has been surrounded by apples all his life. Dan is a past president of the Wisconsin Apple Grower’s Association and had operated Albion Prairie Cyder Orchard and Mill in Edgerton for over 30 years before coming to work as the Orchard Manager at the Seed Savers Exchange from 2012 until 2017. Dan has taught fruit tree grafting for 32 years and lectures on heirloom apple growing, orchard management, cider making and even apple pie baking. Dan is the author of the recently published, 7-volume “The Illustrated History of Apples in the United States and Canada” by the Jakkaw Press of Mt. Horeb, Wisconsin. This book won the 2018 Literature Award given by the Council on Botanical and Horticultural Libraries. Dan currently resides in Ridgeway, Iowa.