If Farm Aid’s stage is the heart of Farm Aid, the HOMEGROWN Village is the hands! Inside the HOMEGROWN Village, food and farm groups from across the country come together to exhibit their work and to give concertgoers a chance to get their hands dirty and dig into the Good Food Movement.
The HOMEGROWN Village is a space for concertgoers to mingle with farmers, engage in hands-on food and farm activities and learn about the ways family farmers are enriching our soil, protecting our water and growing our economy, in addition to bringing us good food for good health.
Under the HOMEGROWN Skills Tent, folks will learn agrarian skills like vermicomposting, sustainable papermaking, and beekeeping. On Farm Yard stage, farmers and artists will engage in live briefings on agricultural issues. In the Farm Aid Action Center, concertgoers can take action to bring Congress’ attention to important matters that affect farmers and eaters.
This year’s HOMEGROWN Village will take place on September 17 between noon and 5:30pm.
If you are interested in participating, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Check out last year’s HOMEGROWN Village exhibits:
Eat Your Zip Code
What does local food mean to you? What can we build to help us all eat closer to home and support family farmers in our area? How are you growing a strong, local Good Food Movement in your region?
Presented by Academy for Global Citizenship Charter School, Chicago, IL
Go back to Kindergarten for a virtual day in the life of a student at the Academy for Global Citizenship (AGC), an innovative Chicago public charter school, including a virtual farm tour of AGC’s schoolyard gardens, a scratch-made, virtual lunch in the zero-waste cafeteria, and more!
Chicago Urban Agriculture Mapping Project
Presented by Advocates for Urban Agriculture, Chicago, IL
If you have ever wondered where to find a community garden, buy local produce for your restaurant, or shop at a farm stand in the city of Chicago, come check out the Chicago Urban Agriculture Mapping Project from Advocates for Urban Agriculture, an interactive map of Chicago’s thriving farms and gardens – simply enter your address to get started!
Hidden Veggie Guessing Game
Presented by Brotherz, Missouri
Can you guess the hidden regional veggies grown by family farmers? Test your tactile skills with Brotherz & Kansas City Food Circle.
Food System Chain Game
Presented by Chicago Botanic Windy City Harvest, Chicago, IL
Trace the path of corn grown in Illinois from farm fields to grocery shelves — where does your food dollar end up and how does this path affect the environment, the economy and your health?
Presented by Chicago Market, Chicago, IL
Learn from a new Chicago co-op about farm-to-table transparency, community education on nutrition, ingredient sourcing and methods of food production, and how Chicago Market will support sustainability and integrity in all areas, including environmental stewardship, fair labor practices and cooperative principles.
Mystery Shopping Bag
Where does your food come from? Is it genetically-modified? Play the “Mystery Shopping Bag” game with Food & Water Watch and Family Farm Defenders to find out!
Explore the Eat Well Guide
Presented by GRACE Communications Foundation, New York, NY
Take your photo with an array of animals, farmers and chefs in the GRACE Photo Booth, and flip through the Eat Well Guide, a directory of over 25,000 hand-picked farms, restaurants, farmers’ markets and other sources of local, sustainable food, to support farmers across the nation!
Presented by Growing Solutions, Chicago, IL
The decision to eat locally may have a bigger impact on more than just your plate! Visit a local vocational farm for individuals with special needs with Growing Solutions.
Growing a Homegrown Flag: The Kentucky Cloth Project
Presented by Growing Warriors, Danville, KY
Learn how to grow an American flag with Growing Warriors and explore the importance of sustainable textile production on the family farm. Touch the first Homegrown Flag, grown from Kentucky’s first crop of hemp in 60 years and dyed using Colonial-era techniques. Everyone should wear, and fly, their zip code!
Celebrating our Food Heritage
Presented by Slow Food Chicago, Chicago, IL
Explore food, clean and fair food and farm diversity! Identify heirloom foods from the Midwest and add your own food, farm and family heritage memories to the Slow Food family tree.
Chicken Meet & Greet
Presented by Angelic Organics Learning Center, Caledonia, IL
Meet the chicks from Angelic Organics! Learn more about the important links between these friendly, feathered friends and local farmers and eaters and the benefits that growing chickens can bring to a family farm.
In Farmers We Trust
Farmers are the backbone of America’s food system and our economy. What does it take to be a farmer? What challenges and opportunities are facing family farmers of all generations and backgrounds? How can we sustain and support the future of farming in America?
Band of Farmers
Presented by Band of Farmers, Chicago, IL
Meet the Band of Farmers: The Chicagoland CSA Coalition! On-stage and off, they’ll show you their silly sides and discuss the serious challenges they face as small-scale family farmers.
Guide to Factory-Free Meat, Eggs and Dairy
Help make Illinois the next state to ban the extreme confinement of factory farm animals. Visit Crate-Free Illinois to support the traditional family farmers, the backbone of the Illinois agricultural system.
Empowering Citizens to Fight Factory Farms
Factory farms are on the rise! How close do you live to a CAFO? The Socially Responsible Agriculture Project and Illinois Citizens for Clean Air & Water are mapping factory farms in Illinois and engaging citizens on what they can do to stop them.
FamilyFarmed: Supporting Local Food and Farmers
Presented by FamilyFarmed, Oak Park, IL
Take a photo with FamilyFarmed to show your support for local agriculture and submit a question in the “Ask the Farmer” game!
Mobilizing Veterans to Feed America
Presented by Farmer Veteran Coalition, Davis, CA
Veterans possess a unique set of skills that translate perfectly into the farming community. Visit with the Farmer Veteran Coalition and learn more about where farmer veterans are growing our food all across America!
What is the Farmers’ Share of the Retail Food Dollar?
Presented by Illinois Farmers Union, Altamont, IL, Wisconsin Farmers Union, Chippewa Falls, WI, Iowa Farmers Union, Des Moines, IA, Indiana Farmers Union, Versailles, IN, Michigan Farmers Union, Weidman, MI
Is the price for family farmers right? Spin the wheel and learn how much of the retail cost of food products finds its way to the family farmer with representatives from the Farmers Unions!
Jumbo Jenga with Food and Farm Trivia
Presented by Illinois Stewardship Alliance, Springfield, IL
How does your food and farming knowledge stack up? Test your skills with jumbo Jenga trivia, and learn more about local food, sustainable farming, and how you can advocate for a more just food system with Illinois Stewardship Alliance.
Presented by Liberty Prairie Foundation, Grayslake, IL
Navigate the intricacies of land access with Liberty Prairie to match local farmers with the appropriate landowners or farmland needed to grow food for the Chicago foodshed with “Farmland Mingle”, an interactive memory game – its not as simple as you might expect to find a match.
Powering the Farm
What are the farm-based innovations, alternative energy sources, growing methods, and models will power us into the future?
Farm Hack – Homegrown Tools for Farmers
Presented by Farm Hack, Iowa City, IA
Farm Hack: Open Source Farm Innovation for all! Stop by and check out Farm Hack’s tractor converted to electric power, homebuilt hand tools and livestock equipment and search our database of over 100 DIY farm inventions – by farmers, for farmers
Presented by Know Tomorrow, Chicago, IL
We know tomorrow will be better! We can all take action for climate change! Know Tomorrow is unifying, synchronizing and amplifying millennials’ voices speaking out on climate change and invites concertgoers to take part in climate change solutions.
Fuel from the Farm
Presented by Sustainable Biodiesel Alliance, Kahului, HI
Discover the benefits of sustainable, community-based biodiesel at home, on the farm, and in your community with Sustainable Biodiesel Alliance. Travel along the community biodiesel life-cycle and learn about this important farm fuel.
Seed Saving for Tomorrow
Presented by The Land Connection, Champaign, IL
Participate with The Land Connection in three different methods of saving seeds from dry beans, tomatoes and marigolds for next season from this year’s produce! These which can be planted next year or traded for new seed at over 300 seed libraries and local seed swaps!
Tap The Source
Water is life. The growing scarcity of clean water affects us all. What are the major threats to our water future? How do farmers practice water stewardship and how can we become better stewards of our water supplies?
Conservation on the Farm
Presented by Michael Fields Agricultural Institute, East Troy, WI
Get your hands wet and learn about water conservation with Michael Fields Agricultural Institute. Manipulate the water modules on the farm landscape to see the affects of conservation and non-conservation practices.
Protect the Source: H2O Stewardship in Real-time
Presented by National Center for Appropriate Technology, Butte, MT
Visit NCAT to learn about the geologic, hydric and physical principles that affect ground and surface water systems and about important stewardship practices that protect everyone’s safe water supply!
Water to Live vs. Water for Profit
Water is becoming a scarce commodity for many family farmers and fishermen. Outside of drought, what are the reasons behind this scarcity and what can the public and our government do to ensure family farmer and fisher access? Visit National Family Farm Coalition to learn more!
The Fertile Ground
Black gold… topsoil… terra firma… No matter what you call it, soil is vital to growing healthy food. What makes soil healthy and what is soil’s role in the health of our land, water, air, climate and food supply? What can we do to better care for this vital resource?
Eco-Restoration for the Future!
Presented by Biodiversity for a Livable Climate, Lexington, MA
Have you heard about eco-restoration? Its an inexpensive, low-tech and powerful approach to addressing droughts, floods, desertification, health, farm productivity, economic security, global warming, food and water conflicts – it’s nature’s package deal and we can all do it together!
Soil Infiltration Testing
Presented by Biodiversity for a Livable Climate, Lexington, MA
Guess and then test soil infiltration rates of various samples. What determines the length of time it takes water to infiltrate soil? What is the composition of a healthy soil versus an unhealthy soil? Add some water to the soil samples and come find out!
Grow. Compost. Repeat
Presented by Growing Home, Inc., Chicago, IL
Come create seed balls, learn about composting and grow to fully appreciate the magic of dirt as Growing Home takes you on a journey from seed to soil and back!
Presented by Indiana Hemp Industries Association, Monrovia, IN
Indiana Hemp Industries Association is bringing hemp back to farmers and consumers! Discover the benefits of hemp as cover crop, the results of the first hemp field test trials at Perdue University and all of the products that can be made with sustainable hemp.
Farm to School – How Do Our Gardens Grow?
Presented by National Farm to School Network, Chicago, IL
Concertgoers of all ages can create the perfect soil recipe, and plant a seed to be grown by a Chicago Public School student in their school garden this fall with the National Farm to School Network!
Clean Food Crusade with United Sludge Free Alliance
Presented by United Sludge Free Alliance, Kutztown, PA
What happens to our food and water sources and the communities where sewage sludge is spread? Get the ‘poop-scoop’ on growing America’s food, why animal manure is different than human waste, our “working worms” exhibit and how you can join our ‘Clean Food Crusade’.
The HOMEGROWN Skills Tent
Presented by HOMEGROWN.org, the HOMEGROWN Skills Tent promises to be chock full of learning and fun! Get your hands dirty and take home a new skill. Participate in workshops and demonstrations to learn new skills.
Resurrect the Potluck
Traditions connect us to our ancestry and to each other. The potluck is a tradition that celebrates tried and true recipes, community and, of course, eating! What food traditions do you want to pass on to others? Share your cooking, baking, brewing, preserving, crafting and building skills with folks through demonstrations and hands-on activities.
Presented by HOMEGROWN.org, Cambridge, MA
HOMEGROWN.org is a gathering place for celebrating the “culture” in agriculture and sharing skills like growing, cooking and food preservation. Stake your plot of land in the HOMEGROWN.org community; meet your fellow HOMEGROWN “neighbors”; take home new agrarian skills from the HOMEGROWN 101 library; and share a favorite skills, recipe or DIY tip!
Eat Your Weeds: Foraging 101
Presented by Dave Odd of Odd Produce, Chicago, IL
Here’s a tip for getting rid of garden weeds: eat them! Dave Odd, of Odd Produce, does just that. He gathers wildflowers, sidewalk herbs and stray berries, and serves them up at Chicago’s finest restaurants. Stop by the Skills Tent to find out what’s growing across the city and how to safely forage in your neck of the woods.
Butter, Kefir and Cheese: Added-Value Dairy 101
Presented by Columbus Agrarians, Columbus, OH
Join Rachel Tayse – homesteading extraordinaire – of the Columbus Agrarians to learn about the complexities of running a small dairy and the ways that many dairy farmers add value to their products. Then try your hand at churning butter, culturing kefir, and making soft cheese!
Sustainable Papermaking 101
Presented by Eric Benson from the Fresh Press Agri-Fiber Paper Research Lab, University of Illinois School of Art & Design, Champaign, IL
What do corn, soybeans, rye and prairie grass have to do with paper? Potentially everything! Learn how Fresh Press is reimagining the paper product industry by using crop residues. In this workshop, you will take part in the sustainable papermaking process to create sheets of paper that are not made from tree fibers. Be prepared to get messy!
Meat Your Farmer
Presented by Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society, Ceresco, NE
Learn how to breakdown a whole pastured chicken, hear about different cuts and how to cook each one, and watch a cooking demo using a marinade that’s been passed down for five generations. Join the Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society in the Skills Tent for all of this and a brief history of chickens and their importance on farms throughout the Midwest.
Just a Spoonful of Kimchi: Fermentation 101
Kimchi may be a standard Korean side dish, but there’s nothing typical about its recipe. The most common contains Napa cabbage, daikon radish, scallions, and lots of stinky fermented shrimp, but Chef Kimberley Clark encourages people to let their imaginations run wild to create original recipes. Come to the Skills Tent to learn how to make this nutritious fermented treat!
Skillshare Exhibits Available All Day
Ferment Your Farm: Brewing 101
Gather your hops, your dandelions, your rose petals, and your lilacs and come cure your ALEments with a homebrew. In this demo, the Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society will stew up a big pot of beer using a timeworn Nebraskan recipe. Learn about brewing history and how to incorporate wild herbs and flowers into your ferment.
Join Jay Salinas and Arts @ Large to learn more about vermicomposting. Stop by the Roadside Culture Stands to learn more about the integration of culture and agriculture!
In Pursuit of Honey: Urban Beekeeping 101
Presented by Westside BeeBoyz, Chicago, IL
Thad Smith of the Westside Beeboyz sets up beehives on rooftops and backyard apiaries across Chicago. Buzz down to the Skills Tent to learn about pollinator health, setting up a hive, and, most deliciously, harvesting honey!
Art in the Village
Paint the Harvest
Presented by: Andrea Jablonski
Grab a paintbrush and make your mark on the Farm Aid 30 mural. Join muralist Andrea Jablonski to create a large-scale, crowd-sourced piece of art. This paint-by-numbers project will illustrate the fall harvest in urban and rural farms alike.
Presented by: Betsy Arant and Laurel Radziewski, resident artists at Wormfarm Institute, Reedsburg, WI
Are you a food poet and don’t even know it? Sit down with Wormfarm Institute resident artists Betsy Arant and Laurel Radziewski, who will engage visitors in impromptu creative writing and poetry about good food!
Temporary Tater Tats!
Presented by: Tater Tats, Zeeland, MI
Do you love chard, asparagus or eggplant? Seal your favorite seasonal veggies in ink and wear them proudly for all to see! Visit with farmer Jenna from Michigan who designs Tater Tats to encourage healthy and local eating, and gives back 10% of sales to small farms and food startups.
Dig In with Farm Aid!
Take Action with Farm Aid
Add your voice to the chorus of people clamoring for change across the country. Join us today to take action for family farmers and a better food system!
We all need family farmers and family farmers need us – to raises our voices in support of critical policies that help them stay on the land, growing good food for us all. Join us in this year’s featured actions:
Support Farm to School!
Farm to school programs are a win-win-win: bringing healthy, farm fresh foods to students, growing market opportunities for family farmers and supporting community economic development. Add your voice to support the Farm To School Act of 2015, which will increase funding for these critical programs across the country.
Farming is Public Service
Presented in partnership with the National Young Farmers Coalition
We need to encourage young people to choose careers on the land! Young people are ready to farm, but student loan debt puts their career dreams on hold. Farmers, like nurses, teachers, government employees and non-profit workers should qualify for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program. Help us tell Congress that #FarmingisPublicService and to endorse the Young Farmer Success Act of 2015.
Register to Vote with Headcount
Presented by Headcount
As American citizens, we all have a part to play and a voice that needs to be heard. Register to vote to make sure your voice shapes your local, state and national elections on important issues, including policies affecting family farmers and food systems.
Stop by to learn more about Farm Aid’s work over the past 30 years to keep family farmers on the land and to grow the Good Food Movement! Add your pledge to the #Road2FarmAid, read about our grantees and the work we have funded across America, and check out the timeline of highlights from Farm Aid’s last 30 years.
Join us on the #Road2FarmAid, our communications campaign to reinforce the idea that change is the sum of many small acts! Get inspired by HOMEGROWN Village exhibitors who are sharing ideas of many things that folks can do to affect change on agricultural issues. Stop by the Farm Aid tent to take the pledge and share your photos and ideas that show how you can make a difference on the #Road2FarmAid!
Celebrate 30 Years of Farm Aid Grantmaking
Farm Aid stitched together a quilt to illustrate how our annual grant program creates a vibrant network of family farm organization across the country. Come sit in a rocking chair and read about the incredible work of our grantees over 30 years.
Learn more about the Farm Aid concert
The Farm Yard
Gather under the Farm Yard tent to listen to issue briefings from farmers and artists on the on the Farm Yard stage. Mingle with family farmers and view footage from the Farm Advocates Documentary project, created in partnership with Charles Thompson of the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University.