We offer community education workshops to enrich and empower area residents who may not be able to participate in our residential programming. The workshops are designed to offer the skills & knowledge people need for their journey toward sustainable living. Offered on Sundays, either as a half-day or a full-day of lecture and hands-on training, we invite experts to come to our campus and teach in their area of expertise, from small animal husbandry to wildcrafting, beekeeping to medicinal herb gardening.
Community education is offered on a donation-basis and a sliding scale basis, depending on an individual’s ability to pay. Please see your event description to see which tuition rate is listed for your event. Some workshops, classes, or discussions are donation-based, while half-day workshops (4 hours) on hard-skills are $25 to $50 sliding scale in advance when you register, and $30 to $55 at the door. Full-day workshops are $45 to $90.
We really appreciate people offering as much as they are able, so that we can continue to offer these learning opportunities to the public. However, if an individual doesn’t have the funding and the course is already filled to meet expenses, we can offer scholarships on a case-by-case basis. Please request a scholarship by submit
ting a description of your circumstances on our Community Education Registration page.
During the summer months, our workshop programming slows down due to low participation. We will be hosting a few workshops during the warm sunny months, but our regular programming runs from October to April.
- Supervised children under 12 are free!
- Herbal tea and water provided. Please bring a snack!
- Please register in advance to get the early bird rate.
- Please wear warm clothing and bring workshop-appropriate gear such as gloves, etc.
In this comprehensive workshop, you will learn about the history of biodynamics, the relationship between biodynamics and permaculture, different biodynamic preparations, the whole farm system and the role of animals, planting by the moon and how cosmic rhythms affect agriculture, the spiritual nature of biodynamics, and modern interpretations. Students will learn how to add preps to a compost pile as well as make a barrel compost pit.
Join Andy Howell for an afternoon of animal fat wizardry. Explore the history of using animal fats as a local, traditional, healthy alternative to many modern oils. Get hands-on experience rendering and preserving animal fats for cooking, salve-making, candle-making, and soap-making. Participate in step-by-step soap-making. Leave with the knowledge to use animal fat as a staple of sustainable living!
What you eat and the environment you live in are literally what make your baby. Tasty and nutritious pregnancy, populate your baby’s microbiome, and restore your health in the “fourth trimester.” We will be making, eating, and sipping an herbally-infused bone broth, a vegetable ferment, herbal tea infusion, and a nutritious snack. Learn how to prepare these foods and nurture the “foundations of health” to provide optimal health and energy for mom, baby, and the whole family. Participants will gain knowledge and inspiration, and leave with recipes, handouts, a tea blend, and something to ferment at home! Bring a quart jar. Materials fee: $5
Backyard beekeeping = Honey + Wax + Pollination. Beekeeping can be a rewarding hobby and provide quality local honey for your family. This workshop will introduce the basics: equipment, supplies, sources, and techniques. Learn about current issues with beekeeping, local laws, diseases and pests, and treatment options. This workshop will also include biology of the honeybee and the life of the hive, history of beekeeping and honey hunting, home honey extraction methods, and plans for a home-built honey extractor.
This workshop with Aprovecho’s permaculture teacher and designer Abel Kloster will cover the skills, resources, and rhythms needed to manage an orchard year round while focusing specific attention on the winter season’s duties. Winter maintenance including pruning technique for optimal production and fertility management will be taught in a classroom setting and then demonstrated in the garden. Students will leave with both the knowledge necessary for year round maintenance and the hands-on skills to prepare their orchard for the summer growing season. This is an important workshop for any caretaker of fruit trees!
More information coming soon!
Join local woodcarver Daniel Yanchury of Corylus Crafts for a primer on working fresh-cut wood by hand with ancient tools. The class will have a mixed format with demonstrations on subjects like shaping wood by splitting, the nature and function of hand tools, sharpness and how to attain it, how wood changes as it dries and how to use this to your advantage, and carving a well-designed spoon. Students will learn and use several “Swedish knife grips” to carve a simple project with a Sloyd knife, and will have the opportunity to try their hand at splitting, shaping, and carving wood by hand and familiarize themselves with the basic tools and techniques of the green woodworker. Bring your questions, tools, and curiosity about this interesting material. Tools will be available for use and purchase.
How do global climatic patterns inform our climate and weather in Western Oregon? What changing climatic conditions can we foresee for the Pacific Northwest as atmospheric carbon dioxide climbs to levels higher than any time in the last 100 million years? What can we do now to prepare for and buffer the impacts of these changes in the way we design our food, water, energy, and shelter systems? What steps can we take to mitigate the impacts of wildfire or other catastrophes? In addition to exploring some of the answers to these daunting questions, we will learn about how we can work with some aspects of climate at the local level to extend our growing season, improve the livability of our homes, and increase total biological diversity and crop yields.
Earthen plasters offer a beautiful and sustainable alternative as a natural finish. We will be using local materials to make and apply both base and finish plasters. You will learn how to create sample boards and what common ingredients and ratios are used for these different types of plasters. Should time remain, we will explore wheat-paste paints and play with pigments. Since studying natural building at Aprovecho, Emily Sessoms has utilized plasters in many of her clients’ projects and where she lives now. She believes in the aesthetic beauty of natural finishes, the meditation that comes through their application, and the wonderful community bonds they can create. Come have fun playing with mud and tapping in to your inner artist!
Sample a wide variety of botanic ales: Urtication Ale, Cherry Yarrow Kriek, Elderberry Wine, Mountain Gruit and Ebulon. We’ll learn about health benefits, history and lore of select country wines (herbs + cane-based ferments), Gruits (herbs + grain or seed-based ferments), Methelglin (herb + honey based ferments) and Speciality Herbal Beers. We will start the day wild-harvesting and learning about a few seasonally available plants. We’ll spend the second half of the day engaged in a brewing demonstration and tasting. Leave with your own botanical ale to ferment at home! Materials fee: $20
Terra Preta is a soil-building technique developed by ancient Amazonian civilizations at least 7000 years ago as a solution to permanently solve the problems of poor tropical soil fertility. Terra Preta soils have been found to contain organic matter content that are 50x greater and contain 3x more Phosphorus and Nitrogen as neighboring forest soils. No water, ventilation, or external energy are required, and you can close the loop between issues of sanitation and bio-waste while feeding the soil food web. In this workshop you will learn how to easily create a Terra Preta sanitation system yourself in your own backyard and build a biochar hearth stove to create your own charcoal!