Winter Conference: More Activities

OVERVIEW | KEYNOTE SPEAKER | WORKSHOPS | INTENSIVES | MORE ACTIVITIES | CHILDREN'S CONFERENCE | DETAILS


In addition to workshops and speakers, the conference offers a vibrant, comfortable environment with varied opportunities for people to connect, share knowledge, and celebrate the occasion. During the main conference on Saturday, February 18, enjoy special meet-ups, lunchtime roundtable discussions, and other activities and goodies.

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Four piece band playing outside, including guitar, cello, and fiddles.

Music

Music is a rich tradition of NOFA-VT's Winter Conference. During the conference opening, enjoy live folk music inspired by tidal rhythms from Elsie Gawler, Ethan Tischler, and Willy Clemetson. Then, groove along to Slim Pickins with Mary Rowell, Fran Rowell, Annie Rowell, Don Schabner during the end-of-day social.

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People get lunch at a buffet

Food

  • Lunch—Enjoy a hearty chili bar featuring ingredients from local, organic producers. Vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free options are available. Lunch does sell out, so secure your ticket in advance when you register for the conference. You are also welcome to bring your own lunch and dine with new and old friends in the ballroom. No other on-campus dining options will be open in the Davis Center that weekend.
  • Snacks & Refreshments—Our complimentary “hospitality” table is open to all and stocked with savory and sweet snacks all day, thanks to our local producers and sponsors.
  • Wood-Fired Oven—NOFA-VT’s beloved mobile oven is onsite, serving roasted root vegetables and providing a place for wintry outdoor connection.
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Drone photo of farmland

Lunchtime Roundtable Discussions 

Join during the lunchtime break on Saturday for conversations around focused topics:

  • Land Access—Come share your needs around land access, ask questions, and discuss relevant issues and challenges with a team of service providers whose work focuses on connecting farmers with land.
  • The Real Organic Project—Learn about this farmer-led add-on label and how it allows farmers to differentiate themselves & promote organic transparency, hear farmer stories, and learn about the Real Organic Podcast.
  • State Policy—Join advocates and organizers to learn about important policy issues being taken up by the legislature and worked on by food, farm, and justice organizations.
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Two people eat ice cream in the Davis Center atrium

Special Meet-Ups

Join an affinity group for conversation and connection!

  • Black, Indigenous, and other people of color (BIPOC) Affinity Space—Hosted by members of the Vermont Releaf Collective, the room will be available throughout the day as a safe space for renewal, conversation, & collaborative art, with structured discussion during the lunch break to focus on needs specific to BIPOC communities. 
  • Examining Whiteness—Reflect on whiteness, privilege, and white supremacy as connected to issues of racism and justice in the food system. Hosted by Bella Fearn, Peace & Justice Center and NOFA-VT Staff during the lunch break.
  • Queer Farmers—Meet up with fellow queer farmers during the lunch break; hosted by Ike Leslie, Magnetic Fields Farm & UVM Extension.
  • Veteran Farmers—Meet up with fellow veteran farmers during the lunch break; hosted by Jon Turner, Wild Roots Farm.
  • Farm Share—In appreciation of the farms who participate in NOFA-VT’s Farm Share Program, we welcome folks from these farms to gather and connect over a tasty treat during the lunch break. 
  • Farm Beginnings & Journey Farmer Cohorts, Past & Present—Have you participated in, or are currently part of, NOFA-VT's Farm Beginnings and/or Journey Farmer programs? Come build community and talk shop with other participants during the lunch break!
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Someone's hands block printing an image of ferns.

Collaborative Art

Stop by and take part in the “Sowing Stories Makerspace” hosted by Ink + Light Creative with block printing and photographic portraiture. Contribute to a community art project centering NOFA-VT values, plus take home a block print and sit for a professional digital photo if you like.

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Seed swappers peruse the table

Seed Swap

Available all day, but most active 12:00-2:00 pm, the seed swap is a great opportunity to try new varieties and offer abundance to fellow conference attendees. An expert from High Mowing Organic Seeds will be on hand to talk seed saving and share tips and resources about storage and more. Bring your clearly labeled seeds to share!

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Jack Lazor on a corn dryer

Film Screening

During lunch, we’ll be screening the recent short film “Soul of the Soil,” which celebrates Butterworks Farm co-founder Jack Lazor’s bold use of organic practices and lifelong commitment to healing the earth. Join us to honor the life and work of a long-time NOFA-VT member and agricultural leader.

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A conference attendee visits a table displaying honey

Exhibitors Fair

In between workshops, peruse exhibitor tables and chat with representatives from organizations central to the farm and food movement in Vermont and across our region. The fair features a range of resources, including new tools, seeds, books, products, educational materials, and more. Stop by to sample some food & drink as you learn about our exhibitors’ important work and services.

 

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People drink beer inside

End-of-Conference Social

At the end of the day, mix and mingle with fellow attendees and debrief the day while enjoying appetizers and a cash bar. Visit with exhibitors and enjoy music by Slim Pickins as you unwind!

 

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A group of four people stand at a cocktail table, smiling.

After-Conference Party

Post-conference, head downtown to Hotel Vermont for drinks and light snacks hosted by Slow Food Vermont and the Vermont Young Farmers Coalition. This social event is open to everyone, including colleagues and friends who have not attended the conference.

 

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An adult, child, and toddler wearing navy shirts printed with the winter conference poster

T-Shirts

Take home a conference memento by purchasing an organic cotton t-shirt featuring conference artwork by our very own Christine Hill! Keep an eye out for the t-shirt table at the conference! Pre-ordering is now closed. 

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People checking in at the conference

Volunteering

Volunteers are central to the success of the conference and it’s a great way to connect with others and be behind the scenes. Shifts are 2 hours and volunteers receive a free conference t-shirt. Or, City Market member hours are available if applicable.

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