the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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see two “our land” films in berkeley, ca – march 17th and 18th at 7 PM

Poster advertising two films showing in Berkeley, CA at 7 PM on March 17th and 18thWhat does the land want? How can our human systems for legacy planning, farm transition and land-linking best serve the interests of the land? Please join the Agrarian Trust and Our Land at two film screenings that explore issues of land access, care and transition. Each film will be followed by a Q&A or roundtable discussion.

What: Film screenings of Brookford Alamanac and Hannah Ranch

When: Tuesday, March 17th at 7 PM (Brookford Almanac) and Wednesday, March 18th at 7 PM (Hannah Ranch)

Where: The David Brower Center at 2150 Allston Way, Berkeley, CA

How much: $10 Advance/$12 Door/$5 Students + Teachers


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do you live in one of california’s pesticide hotspots?

image via theguardian.com

You might wonder how much of your food and air is contaminated by pesticides. Now, if you live in California, you can find out!

The Center for Investigative Reporting has put together an interactive map of California’s pesticide hotspots so you can check whether or not you live in one.

Check out the interactive map HERE.


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uc berkeley 11th hour food and farming journalism: application deadline march 15th

image via blog.longnow.org

The UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism is offering ten $10,000 postgraduate Food and Farming Journalism Fellowships in a new program established by Michael Pollan, the John S. and James L. Knight Professor of Journalism at UC Berkeley. The fellowship, a project of the Knight Center in Science and Environmental Journalism, is supported by a grant from The 11th Hour Project, a program of The Schmidt Family Foundation. Aimed at early and mid career journalists, the Fellowship presents an opportunity to report ambitious long form stories on the full range of subjects under the rubric of food systems: agricultural and nutritional policy, the food industry, food science, technology and culture, rural and urban farming, agriculture and the environment (including climate change), global trade and supply chains, consolidation and securitization of the food system and public health as it relates to food and farming.

In 2015, the fellowship is open to print and audio journalists; in future years, we hope to expand to include multi-media and video journalists. We will give preference to U.S. focused stories, but will also consider international stories with a strong U.S. angle or connection.

Online applications for this year’s fellowship will be due March 15, 2015, and should include a one-page pitch with a clearly defined story idea, not just a subject. The pitch should reflect some preliminary research, providing a clear sense of place, characters, narrative and reporting strategy. The application also requires a CV, two letters of recommendation and published clips.

Those interested in applying will need to be available for a workshop June 8-12, 2015 at UC Berkeley with the 2015 cohort of fellows, fellowship director Michael Pollan, guest editors from national publications and managing editor Malia Wollan. Travel, lodging and meals for the meeting will be covered by the fellowship. During the first session, fellows will refine their story pitches with the help of the editors, and develop a reporting and publishing or broadcast strategy. Fellows will also have opportunities to meet with and interview faculty members and researchers doing work relevant to their stories at UC Berkeley.

Reporting and writing will then take place from June-November. Fellows will meet for a second four-day session in mid-November, during which time completed stories will be workshopped and edited; the editors will also assist fellows in placing their stories for publication or broadcast. Travel and lodging for the November session will also be covered by the Fellowship.

Learn more and apply HERE.


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restoring health to agricultural ecosystems workshop: deadline extended!

image via paicinesranch.com

On the weekend of March 4th-6th Paicines Ranch in Paicines, CA will be hosting a workshop on Restoring Health to Agricultural Ecosystems. The theme this year is Principles and Practices from Soil to Communities.

DESCRIPTION: The potential for sustaining civilization is largely dependent on how we care for the soil, particularly through our farming and grazing practices. In this practical and dynamic workshop we will explore principles and practices for creating healthy agricultural ecosystems. Emphasis will be placed on the importance of soil carbon and the interconnectedness of soil health to the health of all life.

WHERE: Paicines Ranch, 13388 Old Airline Hwy, Paicines, CA 95043

WHEN: Tuesday, March 4-6, 2015, 9 to 5 each day

You can learn more about the workshop and find out how to register for the workshop HERE.


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women on the land: creating conscious community

Women On The Land highlights the work of women of this Northern California coastal community over the past forty years. The film opens with archival footage of women who founded “Country Women” in the 1970’s, the extremely successful feminist publication and how-to magazine for women’s self-sufficiency. Featuring the work women in this community have done to care for the environment of our coastal land and sea over the years, the film then follows the lives of women farming now and explains why the sustainable, organic, local food movement is essential in our current world of dwindling natural resources and economic decline.


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agrarian trust film screening w/ greenhorns director severine v t fleming

Berkeley denizens, mark your calendars for March 17th and 18th. Each night is half of a two-part Agrarian Trust film screening dealing with the issues of land rights and sustainable agriculture in America.

March 17th at 7:00 pm is a screening of Brookford Almanac

In this Reel to Real mini-series, the Brower Center and the Agrarian Trust explore the future of American farmland and farmers. In these two fascinating documentaries, audiences will encounter a first-generation farming couple who left the urban areas of their youth to found a biodynamic dairy (Brookford Almanac) and a lifelong rancher turned “eco-cowboy” (Hanna Ranch).

Brookford Almanac tells the story of Luke and Catarina Mahoney, a first-generation farming couple living their dream of raising a family on an organic dairy tucked along a country road in Rollinsford, NH. Farming is not what Luke and Catarina’s parents expected them to do. They are part of a new generation of farmers that grew up in cities and suburbs and are drawn to the land—to farming—by something other than their family’s expectations. When was the last time you heard a child say, “When I grow up, I want to be a farmer”? (40 min)
Brookford Almanac will be preceded by short films from the New Brunswick Filmmakers’ Co-Operative and the “Our Land” series.

Followed by a Q&A with the Agrarian Trust’s Severine von Tscharner Fleming and special guests.

March 18th at 7:00 pm is a screening of Hanna Ranch
Part two of the Our Land in Transition mini-series, Hanna Ranch is a feature documentary about visionary cattleman Kirk Hanna and his personal struggle to protect a once prominent way of life in Colorado. Born into a life on the family ranch, he became a leader in the environmental ranching movement that set out to protect the West from the relentless encroachment of development and misuse.
Featured in the book Fast Food Nation and dubbed the “eco-cowboy,” Hanna was an early adopter of Holistic Resource Management practices, sat on numerous environmental boards, and was president of the Colorado Cattleman’s Association. At one time, many saw him as a future governor of Colorado–and then his dream of harmony and sustainability was interrupted by the reality of family conflict and mounting threats to the land. (73 min)

Followed by a Q&A with the Agrarian Trust’s Severine von Tscharner Fleming and special guests.

You can purchase tickets and learn more about the whole film series HERE.


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admission open for grange farm school in mendocino county

Read on for new and beginning farmer education as well as opportunities for
experienced farmers looking to learn more. Apply now to be one of the first
students of an emerging hub for sustainable agricultural education, or
register for one of the exciting workshops being offered!

The Grange Farm School is dedicated to teaching the next generation of
responsible, innovative, and successful farmers.  We are strong believers in
experiential education, and our Practicum Student Program is built upon that
philosophy.  A combination of hands-on field work instruction with rigorous
academic curriculum provide an environment for students to learn the
foundations of integrated crops and livestock operations, business management,
industrial arts, sustainable technologies and ecological restoration.

The school is located on 12 acres of the 5,000 acre Ridgewood Ranch in
Mendocino County, and students in the first few years have the exciting
opportunity to collaborate with staff on infrastructure development of a
working farm.  Students will be developing 6 acres for cultivation and
pasture, working with a 2 acre orchard, building facilities for the farm,
marketing produce, meat and eggs, and creating sample business plans, research
proposals, or grant applications.  Experts and mentors in various fields are
available for students to focus on an individual area of interest and field
trips will expand the perspectives we all have on the many methods of
achieving sustainable food production. This program is designed to allow for
independent, project oriented individuals an opportunity to test out theories
and methods while envisioning their future in farming.

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