List of Presenters from 2016


Aaron Dinwoodie

Bio: Aaron Dinwoodie has been farming organically and saving seeds for 12 years and has taught seed saving on a number of occasions. He currently farms 2 acres of certified organic mixed veggies in Sunol, CA where he also saves seed from a variety of crops. He sells his seed at the Old Oakland Farmers Market and online through his farm’s website.

Workshop: Beginning and Intermediate Seed Saving
Techniques for beginning to intermediate seed saving for farm or garden from growing to cleaning, including hands-on opportunities to clean seeds.

Abeja Judy Hummel

Bio: A therapeutic bodyworker, yogini, sportswoman, and lifelong student of human anatomy, Abeja Hummel graduated from William and Mary’s premed program with honors. She thought she knew a lot about how the musculo-skeletal system worked; until she came into contact with Esther Gokhale’s inspired, logical, and unique ideas. Having extensively traveled in Latin America, Africa, Asia and the Middle East (and spending a lifetime in a body!) she immediately saw the inherent wisdom in the Gokhale Method. Incorporating Esther’s ideas into her life, her yoga and her bodywork practice has transformed Abeja’s own posture as well as helped bring great improvement her clients who had not progressed for years with traditional approaches. Abeja lives with her husband and son in beautiful Mendocino County, California in a rural intentional community dedicated to lifelong learning and education in permaculture, sustainability, and restoration of the earth and ourselves.

Workshop: Posture for Gardeners & Crafters
Learn how to use your body in a balanced way to avoid strains, repetitive stress injuries, and back problems while doing the work you love! Based on the Gokhale Method, aka Primal Posture, this workshop will give you the tools to keep the homestead going for years to come.

Workshop: Lively Cultures
In this workshop we will explore the culturing of cow and goat milk into yogurt & kefir and cow cream into crème fraiche. Also, we will make water kefir, a refreshing dairy free alternative. Kombucha-making will also be discussed. Co-presenting with Cindy Wilder

Ali Boecker

Bio: Ali Bee has been a roaming resident of Mendocino County since 2005, currently living on the coast. Passionate about empowering people to care for and take a stand to protect land, life, water and community of which we are part of, she has spent the past few years seeking insight into how & why laws are created to serve corporations, legally allowing harm into our community. How can we, as people living in Mendocino, not only stop poisoning of land, water, and air, but start to enact laws which set a positive and forward-looking vision? Ali participated and ran for Commissioner for the Charter County Project of 2016 (Measure W). As a member of the Mendocino Cannabis Policy Council, she is currently advocating to protect the smallest cannabis farmers, who steward the land, as the era of prohibition is ending in California, and we witness large corporations and politicians fight for every last dollar from this long-unregulated industry.

Now it’s time for the next step. Together, we can create the world we want to see, for the health of our community and for many generations we are borrowing this place from.

Conversation Cafe Topic: Cannabis Happenings
Cannabis is emerging as an above-ground industry. The honey pot has many hands dipping in. Licenses and taxation are soon to be widely available. A bill to allow recreational adult cannabis use is on the CA November ballot. How will this change the landscape? Join this Conversation Cafe to discuss local Cottage Industry, unfolding Mendocino policy, state movements, and above all – HOW do we care for and support Mendocino land and residents as this underground industry emerges into a new era?


Alice Woelfle-Erskine

Bio: Alice grew up in Los Angeles where access to livestock was limited to surreptitiously feeding a neighbors potbellied pigs carrot sticks from her lunchbox. She began working with livestock in 2007 on an urban farm in London, England. In 2009 Alice returned to the US and has worked with livestock on four farms in Oregon and CA including an 18 month apprenticeship with Dan Macon on his Sheep ranch in Auburn CA, where the depth and breadth of her knowledge about managing animals and running a farm business was greatly expanded. Alice moved to Boonville in 2012 and is currently nomading a small herd of Jacob sheep and a 1963 travel trailer around the Anderson Valley.

Workshop: Livestock Management and Shearing Demonstration
The workshop will consist of a shearing demonstration using hand shears. Following that I will discuss all aspects of keeping all kinds of animals at any scale, from large livestock business to small homestead, including breeding, feeding, health issues, slaughter and death, and tips on making decisions about the right practices for your situation. There will be an opportunity for question and answer.

Amigo Bob Cantisano

Bio: Amigo Bob Cantisano is an internationally recognized pioneer in the modern organic farming revolution. His 40+ year career spans all aspects of the organic and local food movement, from organizing food coops, retail stores, wholesale distribution, diversified organic farming, farm and garden supply, food processor, homesteader, heirloom plant propagator, farm advisor, farmer organizer, educator, technical writer, inventor and political activist.

Workshop: Managing Soils on the North Coast

Ananda Sonnabend-Richmond

Bio: Currently a resident of Berkeley, Ananda loves to create food and art at home as much as possible amidst raising two active kids and working with special needs children at an elementary school. A lifelong lover of sour tasting foods, she started doing ferments about 4 years ago and is really interested in the science of fermentation.

Workshop: Raw and Living ~ A Fermentation Demonstration
A fermentation demonstration covering the basics of turning fresh and seasonal produce into highly nutritious and delicious foods. We will demonstrate two basic salt fermentation techniques – dry packing and brining – which can turn almost any garden, foraged or purchased produce into delicious foods high in probiotics. Our workshop menu will include Dilly Beans, Half-Sour Kosher Dill Pickles, Traditional Sauerkraut, Preserved Lemons and Curtido. We will also discuss fermenting with a starter and the basics of water kefir, milk kefir and yogurt.
Co-presenting with Julie Liebenbaum.

Andy Balestracci

Bio: Andy Balestracci has been a devotee of the cult of seed for the past 20 years and a former apprentice at Green Gulch Farm, Muir Beach, CA. He was barking up the organic agriculture trail before WOOFING (Willing Workers on Organic Farms) was around in the U.S. at the Central Rocky Mtn. Permaculture Institute, Basalt, CO., Baca Center for High Altitude Sustainable Agriculture, Crestone, CO., and Mountain Gardens, Burnsville, N.C.. He now offers local heirloom seeds through Diaspora Seeds. He and his partner Linda, along with their canine, feline and poultry co-conspirators, live in Boonville.

Workshop: Seed Saving for Local Resilience
Get an overview of The Art of Seed Saving. You’ll learn the basics of saving seed from all your common garden vegetables. Experience the empowerment and nourishment that comes from local seed saving for your family and community.


Angela (Angie) Peterson

Bio: I was introduced to bees by a friend of mine. I listened to all he had to say about his bees, and what they did for his garden. I decided I wanted at least one hive of my own. I was given a Mason Bee hive. Its simplicity and necessity are fascinating! Mason Bees are just as important as Honey Bees, and both need promotional devices in order to promote their well being.

Workshop: Mason Bee Hive Crafting
Mason bees are very valuable bees to any garden. One Mason bee does the same pollination as 120 honey bees. Their hives are very easy to make and help promote your local Mason bee population. You will learn how to make a Mason Bee Hive out of materials at hand. Several styles will be presented. One out of an old log piece, and a more decorated style. There is a $10 materials fee to make your own.

Anna Birkas

Bio: has her M.S. in Hydrology, B.S. in Environmental Ecology, and is a licensed general Building Contractor. She has worked in watershed sciences, ecology, and construction for 12 years. She is proficient in hydrologic and soils analysis, ecological composition, construction and materials, codes and permitting, and team leadership. She founded Village Ecosystems to provide essential service for water design and construction, especially as it relates with energy, nutrients, and ecosystems.

Workshop: Watershed Health
We will be covering watershed health, specifically roads, erosion, bioengineering, and the regulatory framework such as Fish and Wildlife and Regional Water Board. Co-presenting with Noah Cornell

Anna Purna

Bio: Anna Purna has lived in giant redwood trees to prevent them from being cut down, planted trees with children at their schools all over California, converted diesel buses and trucks to run on vegetable oil and started a garden program at her daughter’s school. She has been turning her personal trash into Bottle Bricks for the past year and has taught children in the garden program how to make them and why it is so necessary in these times.

Workshop: There Is No “Away”
Where is this mythical place “Away? This workshop is a breakdown of the American waste stream and it’s impact on the environment and people. Learn how making Bottle Bricks can be a personal solution to your part in the great American waste stream and throw it a better way into a Bottle Brick that can be used for building. Tired of the thin plastic layer that ubiquitously covers everything you buy and cannot be recycled? Just as food scraps turn into useful compost for our gardens is there a way to turn this “waste” into something that can be used to help build our resilient homes and neighborhoods? Learn about how”trash” can be stuffed into plastic bottles to make Bottle Bricks and about how Bottle Bricks can be used to build benches, garden beds, walls and entire buildings. See examples from across the world. Make your very own Bottle Brick!


April Lance

Bio: April has been keeping bees for over 12 years and is very generous with her time. For the people who buy local, calm, healthy bees from her, they are invited to come and work with her in her bee yard and gain additional experience. She offers packages of bees (3 pounds with a well bred queen) in the spring, up and running hives (just load in your vehicle, set up in your orchard, garden or at your home), as well as all beekeeping equipment. She answers all emails with bee questions all year and is extremely helpful. No chemicals ever used. Excellent beekeeping practices conveyed to you quickly in one hour.

Workshop: Bees and Bee Hives
Where to get bees, what kind of bees should I get. How to get calm, healthy, gentle, lovingly raised, no chemicals ever used HONEYBEES and HOW to set up YOUR HIVE. The current status of honeybees, colony collapse disorder update will be discussed. Interesting facts on honeybees and pollinators will be presented. What we each can do to help honeybees and pollinators whether or not we decide to have a hive or two in our own backyard or garden. How to set up a hive will be shown. Handouts will be provided. Time required to manage your own bees will be discussed.

Arlene Magarian

Bio: Arlene learned the craft of Braided Rug and Basket Making from two Northern California women in 1980 and has been teaching the craft in diverse settings all over California since then, especially in the north and in the Bay Area. Being a “trash queen” and “reuse fiend,” she loves working with color, patterns & creating practical & durable items. She encourages creativity after learning the basics. Teens are welcome to attend.

Workshop: Braided Rug and Basket Making
Learn the traditional craft of Braided Rug and Basket Making using recycled materials of all kinds to make rug, seat mat, pet bed, basket and more. It’s reuse at it’s best and results in practical, useful, unique and beautiful objects. Tricks are best demonstrated. $10 materials fee includes material to begin piece, stainless steel Braidkin lacing tool, a couple yards of waxed linen lacing, pictorial pamphlet detailing the basics.


Barbara Goodell

Bio: Barbara has been cooking with solar ovens for decades. She has experience with solarly cooking vegetables, meat, fish, bread, eggs, soups casseroles, cakes, warming up left-overs, and making cheese and yoghurt.

Workshop: Living With a Solar Oven Every Day
Demonstration of how solar ovens are in many ways easier to use than fossil fuel ovens and even stovetop burners, often with better results. Co-presenting with David Skillman .

Bill Meyer

Bio: Bill has been building fences for more than 40 years both for containing livestock and excluding wildlife. The principles are essentially the same for every fence, but he learns something new with each project. Bill and his wife raised two kids on their homestead in the hills of Boonville.

Workshop: Building Fences
We will offer tools, techniques, and tips for building permanent fencing on all sorts of terrain with a variety of materials.

Bill Seekins

Bio: I have raised canola, harvested it, and pressed it into oil.

Workshop: Canola Oil: Growing, Harvesting and Pressing
I will talk about growing and harvesting canola and demonstrate pressing it into oil.”


Bill Taylor

Bio: Bill Taylor has gardened for 50+ years, farmed for the past 13 years in several Mendocino County microclimates, and founded EarthWorks Projects in Boston: urban orchards and gardens in inner city neighborhoods. He blends wild and cultivated plants, perennial and annual, trees, shrubs, at Floodgate Farm on Heart Mountain above Redwood Valley. He also composes music and plays piano at the Ukiah United Methodist Church.

Workshop: Salad University
Salad University will introduce students to 30 or more wild and cultivated plants used in Floodgate Farm’s salad mix. We will taste and discuss health giving properties as well as hints on when to grow and harvest. We will offer atual plant samples and photos of each plant, and finish with a green smoothie made with wild plants. Co-presenting with Jaye Alison Moscariello.

Carol Cox

Bio: Carol Cox managed the Ecology Action Research Garden for nearly twenty years. Now she and her neighbors in the middle of Willits are collaborating on a community garden in the empty lot next door.

Workshop: COMPOSTING: Waste into Wealth!
Compost can help you improve your soil, grow healthier plants, reduce insect damage, conserve water, recycle your kitchen and garden waste! Naturally! And its easy! We will look at some basic guidelines so that you can make great compost.

Workshop: SOLAR COOKING: Using the Sun instead of Your Stove
Cooking with the sun is an easy way to reduce your carbon footprint. You can make your own solar box cooker or buy a fancier one. You’ll eat better-tasting food, keep your kitchen cooler, and save money on utilities. Well look at different kinds of solar cookers and how to use them.”


Carolyn Carleton Browe

Bio: Carolyn Carleton Browe has been handweaving rugs and carpets for the interior design trade for 35 years. Raised on her family’s 8th-generation farm in Connecticut, she and her sister taught themselves spinning, dyeing and weaving with the wool from their father’s sheep. Studies in natural and chemical dyeing and weaving in the SF Bay Area broadened her knowledge and in 1980, her rug weaving studio, Carleton Designs, was launched in collaboration with her late husband, Vincent Carleton. In the last 5 years, Carolyn has also been exploring floor-covering designs in wool felt. Today her rugs are represented by interior design showrooms in San Francisco, New York and Chicago and locally in Partners Gallery in Ft. Bragg.

Workshop: Natural Plant Dyeing
I will have a couple of different plant dyepots to tie-dye cotton handkerchiefs/napkins. One will be onion skins for a rich rust color and the other is Old Mans Beard lichen for a softer orange color. After a short talk on the variety of colors possible with various plant materials in combination with various chemical mordants, I will provide pre-mordanted cloths and the participants will tie the cloths in preparation for different tie-dye patterns. Participants will take the dyed cloths home after the workshop.


Chuck Payne

Bio: Chuck Payne is a Professional Geologist working in the Bay Area. During his career in the environmental site assessment/remediation industry he has been immersed in the culture of safety, which emphases communication about hazards and mitigation of risk. Both through his education and first hand experience (while in Santa Cruz in 1989 during the Loma Prieta earthquake) he knows what can happen when the immense forces of interacting plates release their stored energy in the form of an earthquake. Thus, over many years he has researched and prepared for the next major earthquake.

Workshop: Earthquake Preparedness
One of thing that makes Californias landscape so beautiful also presents a real danger to its citizens: earthquakes. This workshop will provide a brief summary of the numerous threats an earthquake poses and will present a number of steps that can be taken beforehand to minimize the potential for personal injury and reduce damage. Topics will include: identification of hazards in you home, preparation of an emergency plan, building and an earthquake kit, steps required to secure your home and belonging to minimize damage. In addition, protection is critical during an earthquake and the meaning of “Drop, Cover, and Holding On” will be discussed. Finally, topics on how to restore daily life during the days and weeks after a major earthquake will include: checking for damage and injury, when to follow an emergency plan, how to use the earthquake kit and reconnecting with others.

Guidance documents from the Earthquake County Alliance (Staying Safe when the Earth Shakes and Living on Shaky Ground) and the USGS (Putting Down Roots in Earthquake Country) will be available at the fair and are also available for download at


Cindy Wilder

Bio: Cindy has been growing her own food in Boonville for 21 years. Nine years ago she added medicinal herbs, followed by laying hens and bees. She is an avid composter and loves the challenge of balancing the bounty of what is grown in her garden between what is consumed by her and her husband and what goes to the chickens or is left to flower for the bees. She also enjoys time spent on AV Foodshed activities and helping to organize the Not-So-Simple Living Fair. About 12 years ago, Sandor Katz came to Anderson Valley and did a workshop on fermentation at the Boonville General Store, demonstrating how easy it is to do. She’s been making sauerkraut ever since and also became involved in culturing at about the same time, turning milk into yogurt & kefir and cream into crème fraiche.

Workshop: Lively Cultures
In this workshop we will explore the culturing of cow and goat milk into yogurt & kefir and cow cream into crème fraiche. Also, we will make water kefir, a refreshing dairy free alternative. Kombucha-making will also be discussed. Co-presenting with Abeja Hummel


Community Garden Tour

Bio: The Community Garden was started by Eri Ferreyra this year. Eri had been working for the last two years with the Gardens Project, a part of North Coast Opportunities in Ukiah, that has started over 30 gardens in Mendocino County for low-income and senior citizens. He urged them to start one in Anderson Valley. Partnering with Karen Ottobani and Gina Pardini, he solicited volunteers from the community to create our new Community Garden on the grounds of the Elderhome. The garden is open to anyone who wants a garden but has limited access to water and/or space. It is hoped that there will be great diversity among the participants and that the garden will be a place where different groups and ages will meet and work together.

Workshop: Community Garden Tour
Eri Ferreyra and his assistant Jessie will take a group over to see this wonderful new garden space in downtown Boonville and learn more about it.

Corine Pearce

Bio: Corine Pearce is a Pomo from Redwood Valley with Mendocino and Lake County ancestry. She is a traditional basket weaver, herbalist, singer, and dancer. With a lifetime of experience, Corine has dedicated her life to sharing her knowledge of her land base in a sincere effort to help others to love and connect the place we inhabit.

Workshop: Traditional Acorn Processing
Learn how to process the abundance of the oaks in this hands-on class. From tending the oaks to eating the mush, learn the traditional and modern ways we use this great blessing.

Workshop: Native Uses of Plants
This is a hands-on class, part lecture, part plant identification, part storytelling. Discuss and learn about the utilitarian, medicinal and spiritual uses of the local flora. This class is open to any level participant, all ages welcome. Young children please bring a parent.


David Severn

Bio: David Severn’s childhood mentor was Straight Arrow, a Comanche warrior whose Native American wisdom was regularly recorded on the cardboard dividers between the biscuits of David’s favorite breakfast cereal, Nabisco Shredded Wheat. Later in adolescence, Coyote visited David in the form of an Indian matron from the southern Humboldt, Wailaki tribe, who sat next him at a dance and proclaimed he looked like a “real Indian boy”. Taking this to heart, he has been studying, listening to the elders and trying to walk the Good Red Road ever since.

Conversation Cafe: Native Californians~With Great Respect
Think of all the New Age buzzwords like Sustainability, Ecology, Community, Peace, Harmony, Local Food, Spirituality and come planning to discuss how we might learn from those that came before us.


David Skillman

Bio: David Skillman is a lifelong maker and builder, disguised as a licensed general contractor. His other projects include furniture made of local Douglas fir branches, houses using innovative design and building materials, hot tubs, heliostats, and bicycles. He is unintimidated by three-dimensional projects.

Workshop: Living With a Solar Oven Every Day
Demonstration of how solar ovens are in many ways easier to use than fossil fuel ovens and even stovetop burners, often with better results. Co-presenting with Barbara Goodell


Debbie Baron

Bio: My name is Debbie Baron and I am the secretary of the Mendo Alcohol Fuel Group, which is located in Fort Bragg, CA. Our group is a made up of people who believe alcohol fuel (ethanol fuel) is the most effective, cheapest, and safest fuel that society can use to run our vehicles right now, as well as, the fuel that can mitigate climate change and other environmental problems. Our group believes in all things ethanol fuel and strives to tell the truth about it.

Workshop: Alcohol Fuel – Mini Style
Hands on mash making and denaturing, distillation demonstration, storage and dispensing of alcohol fuel. Also, poster board descriptions of how a small farm can grow for ethanol fuel using a variety of feed stocks while regenerating soil, conserving water, and mitigating green house gas emissions.


Donna d’Terra, and friends

Bio: Donna is a lifelong student of plants and has been teaching herb classes for the past 30 years with a focus on local, sustainable and restorative herbalism. She is the founder and director of Motherland Botanical Sanctuary and Herb School, located in the hills outside of Willits, Ca. Georgia Lane is an herbalist /activist and wild foods chef living in the Pygmy Forest. Vicky Salcido-Cobb is the Garden Manager at Motherland, and has an herbal products business, Grandmother’s Medicine.

Workshop: Wild Plants for Food and Medicine
Learn how to sustainably harvest and use wild plants that are all around us for nutritious, delicious food and drink. We’ll cover weeds/greens, berries, and trees/nuts. Many taste treats offered.


Doug Browe

Bio: A life-long artist and lover of cooking and starter of a local weekly sourdough bread barter circle on Greenwood Ridge now in its 3rd year, Doug is intrigued by the alchemical magic of this historic tradition of community based food stuff and its current relevance and importance in our localized food stream. By day, Doug is an artist and a mild mannered college art professor, and one day a week he stokes the oven of his desire! Building a wood fired oven begat weekly bread bakes, that in turn created a weekly “bread route” where he bakes for his community and is learning to bake the best bread he could imagine. Brag Tag: His Hearth Baked Loaves have been 1st place winners and Best of Division the last 2 years running at the Boonville Apple Fair.

Workshop: Flour, Water, Salt, & Magic
There are 3 sessions. If you want to bake your own loaf or see the whole process, come to all 3. More adventures in wildcrafted yeast and bacteria raised wheat breads. We will meet for 3 workshops on Saturday. In the early morning shift at 8 am, we will discuss and learn the art of wildcrafting our own Sourdough starter through discussion and demonstration. We will then learn to make a leaven from our starter and then the bulk ferment, start it rising and fold it to condition the dough. At noon we will turn out the slack dough and form up the loaves and set them to raise in their baskets. Then at 4pm we will preheat dutch ovens, turn the dough into them, and set them to bake in time for us to share our magical offerings at the Saturday night potluck! NO experience needed, just a love or interest in bread and baking. Bring a Dutch Oven with lid if you want to bake a loaf at the fairgrounds!


Doug Livingston

Bio: Doug has been engineering alternative energy systems for 25 years. He is a popular alternative energy instructor at the Solar Living Institute in Hopland and the host of the Alternative Energy Hour program on KZYX&Z community radio. In addition to doing system design, installation and trouble shooting, he also has significant experience teaching solar. Doug is a NABCEP Certified Solar Installer.

Workshop: What’s New With Grid-tie Photovoltaic Systems
Doug will give an overview of photovoltaic systems, the advantages of grid-tie, including tax incentives. He will also address questions about on alternative energy topics including off-grid solar, solar water heating, small hydroelectric systems, and solar water pumping, depending on the interest of the participants.


Ed Nieves

Bio: Aho Mitakuye Oyasin! All Thanks to Grand-Mother Ocean our Mother’s womb from which all Life springs. In 1970 I was eleven years old and standing in a school playground in the ghetto’s of N.Y. when my dream of feeding people from the Ocean began. It was 1998 – 28 years later that my dream became a reality and I’ve been doing it ever since.My sense of well-being, spiritual connection and my ability to raise my voice in song and prayer all stem from gratitude, right livelihood and the opportunity to sit at her feet. Give Thanks. Ed

Workshop: Seaweedin’ – Giving Thanks for Food and Medicine from the Mother’s Womb. Wildcrafting where the weeds aren’t plants and the ocean is your garden. Come prepared to laugh, sing, sample seaweeds, and learn more than you wanted to know. This class will cover the basics of seaweed harvesting from ethics to licensing and harvesting techniques. We will touch on the spirit of harvesting food and medicine for yourself and for others and share ceremony as part of daily life.