If Farm Aid’s stage is the heart of Farm Aid, the HOMEGROWN Village is the hands!
In the HOMEGROWN Village, thousands of festivalgoers will explore interactive exhibits and activities that engage all of their senses. Food and farm groups from across the country showcase exhibits about soil, water, energy, food and farming through art, games, and hands-on activities. In the HOMEGROWN Skills area, festivalgoers attend skillshares and demonstrations, celebrate the culture of agriculture and go home with new skills. Farmers, farm activists and festivalgoers come together in the FarmYard to meet and share stories. On the FarmYard Stage farmers and concert artists discuss urgent issues. Read below for last year’s HOMEGROWN Village exhibits and skills activities.
Check out last year’s exhibits in each category below.
Jump to A Section
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?
Farm to Table Connections of Western PA
Presented by Farm to Table Western PA, Pittsburgh, PA
Find out everything you need to know to eat locally year round in Pennsylvania with the Local Food Guide and tips for preserving fresh produce.
The Singing Grow Room
Presented by FIT Farms, Pittsburgh, PA
Ever wondered what a plant sounds like? Come sit inside a mobile, living, interactive, edible musical instrument that exhibits the potentials of Green STEAM workforce development.
Calculate the Carbon in Your Calories
Presented by the City of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
In this data-based exhibit, festival goers will design their own urban homesteads on city lots and calculate the cost savings and carbon savings of growing food, not lawns.
Presented by Restaurant Opportunities Center (ROC) United, Philadelphia, PA
Put your corn hole tossing skills to good use while learning about the injustice of the sub-minimum tipped wage and the need for dignity and fairness for people working as restaurant servers.
Good Food for All
Presented by The Food Trust, Just Harvest, & Tobacco Free Allegheny, Pittsburgh, PA
Everyone deserves access to good food. Find out how groups in the Pittsburgh area are working to make this a reality-in corner stores, farmers markets and grocery stores-and how you can get involved wherever you live!
Supporting Farmers Locally and Nationally: Advocating With Your Fork and Your Vote
Presented by National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, Washington, DC
Test your regional knowledge at this model farmers’ market stand to learn about local and regional foods and farms and how to support them with your fork and your vote.
Serving Up Sustainability
Presented by Sustainable Pittsburgh Restaurants, Pittsburgh, PA
Play a game to find out what Pittsburgh restaurants are doing to become more sustainable and support local farms, and best of all, find out where those restaurants are located![/expand]
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?
Presented by Pennsylvania Farmers Union, Stroudsburg, PA
Gather up your trivia team to test your knowledge in two different games: the levels of government controlling food policy that impacts your daily lives and the discrepancies between the price you pay for food and the price the farmer receives.
The Farm @ Greater Washington County Food Bank
Presented by The Farm @ Greater Washington County Food Bank, Brownsville, PA
Do you know how to solve food insecurity, hunger, and other social issues? Through innovative agricultural practices and community based agricultural education! Learn how The Farm @GWCFB does it, and check out their beautiful antique tractor.
AgrAbility: Making Farming Accessible for All
Presented by West Virginia AgrAbility, Morgantown, WV
This play area is your chance to get your hands on some awesome, accessible farm tools (including a tractor!) and dig in the dirt while learning that there are no limitations to who can farm.
Growing Right Multimedia Pop Up: The Voices of Organic Farmers and the Beginnings of the Ohio Organic and Ecological Food and Farm Movement
Presented by Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association, Columbus, OH
Step up to this multimedia booth to hear incredible recordings of organic farmers, enjoy slideshows, and view historical and other informational documents on the beginnings of the local and organic food movement in Ohio.
The Fortune Cookie
Presented by West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition, Charleston, WV
Learn about life as a West Virginia farmer and take the opportunity to share advice and give words of encouragement and thanks to farmers in the Mountain State
Learn some new masonry skills with hands-on hempcrete wall building demonstrations and check out some other surprising things made from hemp while learning about a crop that has a lot of potential for farmers in Pennsylvania and beyond!
Try your luck at our very own policy Plinko board! Explore the differences between local, state, and federal policies and programs, all while learning how you can make a difference.
Don’t Fry Our Farms!
Presented by RESPECTAgZone, Indianaola, PA
Try your hand at planning a utility route that will have the least impact on local agriculture and learn about efforts to stop high-voltage transmission lines from going through agricultural zones.
Change Starts with You
Presented by Community Farm Alliance, Berea, KY
Come spin CFA’s Theory of Change Wheel and see how a 30+ year-old organization plugs you into their work changing and uplifting food and farm systems in Kentucky.
Guess What? Chicken Butt!
Presented by Socially Responsible Agriculture Project (SRAP), Salem, OR
Learn about the consequences of your food choices through an interactive game where larger-than-life chickens will prompt you to ask, “how was your meat produced?”
Farm Safety: Live With It
Learn the importance of farm safety through active play with model farm equipment that simulates farm accidents and demonstrates measures that can keep farm families safe.
The Declaration of Interdependence
You’ve heard of the Price is Right; come try your hand at the Price is Wrong and learn the difference between the prices you pay for food and the prices farmers, ranchers, and fishermen receive. Then help write the Declaration of Interdependence to outline the interdependence between farmers, fishermen, and eaters!
Presented by KDC: Cooperative Solutions, Ephrata, PA
Learn the benefits of cooperation through fun activities and how farmer owned cooperatives boost the local food supply.
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?
Turning Protectors into Providers
Presented by Veterans to Farmers, Denver, CO
Walk through a functioning greenhouse and hydroponics system while talking to veterans about their farming operations and how they conserve water and land!
Pin the Tail on the Pipeline
Presented by Food & Water Watch, Philadelphia, PA
Like the classic party game but with fossil fuel pipelines! Place a sticker on a map of Pennsylvania to learn where pipelines are located or proposed in the state and what it means for farmers and the food supply.
What’s Soil Got to Do with It?
Presented by Waterkeepers Chesapeake, Takoma Park, MD
See the effect that soil has on water quality with your own eyes and learn what farmers can do to protect both our soils and water sources.
Farming and Fracking Don’t Mix
Presented by Berks Gas Truth, Kutztown, PA
Learn about the impacts fracking and natural gas infrastructure have had on farms and water quality in Pennsylvania.
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?
It’s Alive! Composting Food Waste for Food-Growing Soil
Presented by Steel City Soils, LLC, Braddock, PA
Get up close and personal with the microbes that live in healthy organic soil, and take the chance to interact with and feel like part of an otherwise unseen world.
People, Pasture, Profit, Planet
Presented by United States Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service, Harrisburg, PA, with Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture, Millheim, PA
Hop on a stationary bike to grind small grains and learn the importance of proper grazing techniques that improve animal health and wellbeing, natural resources, profits, and farms across America.
The Resilience of Biologically Active Soil
Presented by National Center for Appropriate Technology, Keene, NH
Learn everything you want to know about soil and its impact on our food supply, land, water, air, and climate through interactive demonstrations.
You Are What You Eat: Sludge-Free For Me!
Presented by United Sludge Free Alliance, Kempton, PA
Get the “poop-scoop” on the differences between fertilizing with animal manure versus human waste, watch worms at work in the soil, and see plants soaking up nutrients in a colorful demonstration.
Fight it with Farming
Presented by Rodale Institute, Kutztown, PA
Get your hands dirty while learning how regenerative organic agriculture fights climate change through carbon sequestration and creates climate change resiliency in farming systems.
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.
2017 Skills Tent Demo Schedule
12:30 Gathering the next generation of plants: Seed Saving 101
Presented by Tess Weigand from Pennsylvania Certified Organic
Come learn how to save your own garden seeds and explore why seed saving is important, along with some basic plant biology. Stop by our table throughout the day to learn how to save seed from many of your favorite garden vegetables, and swap seeds with home gardeners and farmers from around the country!
1:00 Feed the Worms: Vermicomposting 101
Presented by Travis Leivo of Shadyside Worms
Meet some worms and watch them churn out fertile soil. Learn to compost, reduce your food waste and amend your soils, and discover the science behind composting.
2:00 Harvesting Paper: Sustainable Hemp Papermaking 101
Hemp is a hearty plant that has many industrial applications, and a long history in the U.S. In this workshop, learn the process of papermaking with hemp plants. Starting from raw hemp stalks, you’ll learn retting, pulping, and sheet forming, then pressing, and drying.
3:00 Buttress the Bees: Pollinator-Friendly Seedballs 101
Presented by Amanda Brozana Rios from National Grange
Learn how you can help make any environment supportive of pollinators through the guerilla gardening tool: seed balls. Using just a few simple ingredients including seeds that will make native pollinator happy, you’ll make and take home seed balls, along with knowledge about improving pollinator health and the importance of pollinators in our food system. And, see bees in action at the demonstration hive throughout the day!
4:00 Seasonal thirst-quenchers with a punch: Shrub and Switchel 101
Presented by Moirin Reynolds and Danielle Marvit from Garden Dreams Urban Farm and Nursery
Create your own locally sourced seasonal refreshments! We will be making a fruit shrub and a classic switchel with local ingredients. Learn a little of the history behind these recipes and how they have been used to quench the thirst of farmers for generations. You’ll also learn tips and tricks on how to use shrubs and switchels to make creative cocktails that will wow your friends and family!
4:30 The Art of the Crispy Pickle: Pickling 101
Presented by Jeff Conover from Conover Organic Farm
Learn the secret to making crisp and great tasting Dill and Bread and Butter Pickles at home.
5:00 Core Skills: Appealing Ways to Use Apples 101
Presented by Chef David Carmine from WQED
David Carmine, professional chef and host of the online series, “Between the Eats,” will demonstrate a variety of ways apples can be prepared: including apple chutney and apple butter.
Farm Aid 2017 Seed Swap
Presented by Pennsylvania Certified Organic
Farmers and gardeners, bring seeds from home and come on down to the HOMEGROWN Skills Tent. Meet enthusiastic seed savers, swap some of your own seeds and go home with new varieties to try!
Art & Games in the HOMEGROWN Village!
Presented by Brian Calhoun and Dave Matthews
Break your flock of Chickapigs free while dodging opponents, hay bales and an unruly pooping cow in this strategic board game. Chickapig breeder and game creator Brian Calhoun joins forces with his farming buddy Dave Matthews to bring this game from farm to table. Bring some friends and give it a whirl on giant magnetic boards.
Make your mark on the Farm Aid 2017 mural with a fun project that makes use of the shadows cast by the trees around the KeyBank Pavilion!
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!
Here’s a list of last year’s actions.
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:
Tell Congress: Family Farms, not Factory Farms!
Support Family Farmers in the 2018 Farm Bill
Presented by Campaign for Family Farms and Environment members Missouri Rural Crisis Center, Iowa CCI, Land Stewardship Project, Dakota Rural Action, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, and Food & Water Watch
Express your artistic side while fulfilling your civic duty. Decorate a postcard to be sent to your members of Congress, urging them to support family farmers, not factory farms, in the upcoming 2018 Farm Bill.
The Importance of Voting Local
Presented by HeadCount, New York, NY
Local governments have a huge impact on laws and regulations that affect farmers, the food industry, and everyday life. Register to vote and become a more active member of your community!
HOMEGROWN Youthmarket in the HOMEGROWN Village
You can purchase their delicious produce and foods in HOMEGROWN Concessions, so come learn about and speak with the youth and the organizations that support them!
Stop by to learn more about Farm Aid’s work over the past 32 years to keep family farmers on the land and to grow the Good Food Movement! Read about our grantees and the work we have funded across America and check out the timeline of highlights from Farm Aid’s last 32 years.
Farm Advocate Link & Farmer Resource Network
Navigating the complex world of farm lending, state and federal regulations, contracts, and government programs can feel impossible for many farmers. Since the farm crisis of the 1980s, farm advocates and farm service organizations have helped farmers navigate the maze of food and farm regulations and programs. Come learn about Farm Aid’s Farm Advocate Link and Farmer Resource Network — two programs which connect farmers to the people and resources that can help them stay on their land and be successful.
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 the last 32 years.
Learn more about the Farm Aid concert
Gather in front of the FarmYard stage to put your farm on Farm Aid’s farmer map! Mingle with family farmers and farm activists throughout the day.