2013 Fall Festival’s Sustainability Day

fall_festival_posters_sustainSaturday, October 5th 12-5 p.m.

Love local food, renewable energy, and other cool ways to take care of Mother Earth? Well, Sustainability Day is the day for you! Featuring a slew of demonstrators and vendors promoting their paths to a healthy planet (full list below), there will be plenty of ways to get your hands dirty– literally– with farm fun and environmental education. From backyard chickens and worm composting to solar ovens and bike blenders, the power of YOU has never been more clear than with this event’s activities. Activities subject to change.


Compost Tea presented by Rio Grande Community Farm

Compost tea is a great way to quickly offer beneficial nutrients and microbes to your plants. Learn from Jamie Phillips, farmer at RGCF, how to make your own simple, inexpensive, and effective compost tea at home.

Worm Composting presented by the Worm Ladies

Master Composters Patricia and Stephanie, also known as “the worm ladies”, demonstrate vermicomposting, or worm composting, a way to easily convert household vegetable waste into a natural soil amendment. Come learn what you need to know to vermicompost in your home!

John Shasti of Knowaste

Knowaste provides waste management services with an educational focus on minimizing solid waste through proper sorting of trash, recyclables, and compostable waste. Bringing ABQ closer to Zero Waste with your input!



RGCF Community Garden

Rio Grande Community Farm’s Community Garden coordinator, Greg Little assists with the overall maintenance of the community garden while organizing and facilitating workshops about gardening, harvesting, and storing techniques. Stop by to get some free seeds and learn about the community garden.

Bernalillo County Master Gardeners

Stop by this information booth for expert gardening advice from Bernalillo County Master Gardeners. The Master Gardeners will be available for questions as well as hosting games and activities for kids. They will also be selling Down to Earth: A Gardener’s Guide to the Albuquerque Area, Tomato Fiesta Cookbooks, and tomato knives.



Solar Power presented by Affordable Solar

Come learn about photovoltaic solar technology and how you can reduce your energy bill through rooftop solar panels.  Information on NM and federal tax credits as well as a new “lease to buy” program will be available.

Solar Cooking Presented by Sunny Skies Solar

Use New Mexico’s most abundant resource to cook your food economically! Come watch and taste as Sunny Skies Solar demonstrates their efficient and inexpensive hot pot solar ovens.



Backyard Foraging presented by Debrilla Ratchford

How local do you eat? Known as the Princess of Prickly Pear, Debrilla Ratchford’s expertise on backyard foraging gives a new meaning to eating local. Join her demonstration to learn about the Prickly Pear cactus: harvesting tips, nutritional information, and recipes for both the pad and the juice. Enjoy samples of this delicacy!

Bicycle-Powered Blender presented by Cycles of Life

Come enjoy a smoothie with Cycles of Life founder Jake Foreman as he uses a bicycle-powered blender and earth-based curriculum to engage youth to explore health and take action to foster positive change in people, communities, and bioregions.

Albuquerque Herbalism

Join Albuquerque Herbalism Instructor Dara Saville for “Make Your Own Healing Lip Balm” demonstrations. Watch how fast and easy it is to make your own customized lip balms made from just a few natural ingredients. Learn about Albuquerque Herbalism’s affordable classes on how to make your own body care products and herbal remedies for natural health and wellness.



 The Drought Dillema Game presented by Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority

Roll the die to understand what drought looks like in New Mexico and how long it will take to recover. Is there anything we can do to help?



Farm Animal Fun presented by Animal Protection of New Mexico

Children will learn about farm animals through inter-active play with a large-scale toy farm equipped with barns, pastures, ponds, and farm animals. Humane treatment of animals begins with the awareness that what makes people happy and healthy is also what makes animals happy and healthy…even large farm animals! Children will be able to “milk” Clarabell, (our pint-sized cow) and make clucking chickens to take home. Presentations will be offered at 1:00 and 2:00 and limited to 20 children (and their adults).

The Wonders of Bats presented by Rio Grande Basin Bat Project and RD Wildlife Management

Did you know that while you are sleeping, bats are busy controlling the insect populations on our farms and gardens? Learn about these amazing nocturnal creatures, hear about the programs of Rio Grande Basin Bat Project and observe a bat house being made.

Plus Nubian Goats and Chickens!



MRCOG Agricultural Collaborative

The MidRegion Council of Governments Agricultural Collaborative supports the local agricultural economy, small farms & local food in central New Mexico by providing monthly meetings on relevant local food topics, on-line resources including maps, blogs, and land-linkage opportunities, and hosting an annual local food festival.

‘No-Till’ Farming Demonstration presented by Dan Schuster

RGCF’s Chief Farmer Dan Schuster will demonstrate some of the equipment used at Rio Grande Community Farm to farm without disturbing the soil’s microbes in order to increase soil organic matter and water-holding capacity.

UNM Sustainability Studies Program

The Sustainability Studies Program is an interdisciplinary academic program on the main campus at UNM. We teach students about how they can use their minor in sustainability to be sustainable in their career and personal life.  Dr. Bruce Milne, Director of UNM Sustainability Studies Program will speak at 3:00.

Las Arañas Spinners and Weavers Guild

Las Arañas Spinner and Weavers Guild will demonstrate and teach the traditional, sustainable, and practical art of spinning wool and weaving it into clothing and blankets.