Local Businesses

Friday, October 21st 12:30pm

Yellow Springs has it’s fill of long-standing, small business (and non-profits) that have, over the years, been pillars of the community. Many of these businesses have interesting and storied histories. Come join us for the Local Business Tour and hear firsthand what some of them are. We will be visiting 1) the Little Art Theatre, 2) The Yellow Springs News, 3) the Chamber of Commerce & 4) the Yellow Springs Brewery, all of which have rich histories in our little hamlet. 

To visit the the Little Art Theatre website, please click here

To visit the The Yellow Springs News website, please click here

To visit the The Chamber of Commerce website please click here

To visit the The Yellow Springs Brewery please click here

Those planning to attend the Local Business Tour, please gather at 12:15 in front of the Little Art Theatre (247 Xenia Ave, Yellow Springs)


Pollinator Gardens

Friday, October 21st 3:00pm

Nadia Malarkey

The three private gardens that we will tour are examples of the work I am engaged in to transform suburbia from the formulaic and chemically saturated footprint that dominates the country today to spaces that are healthy, bio-diverse, and beautiful. These spaces are designed to attract wildlife and provide support for our at risk native pollinators while serving as effective carbon sinks.

We will visit a typical suburban ‘planned unit development’ where a new build on 1/3 of an acre is being transformed into a bio-diverse landscape. Another project was an existing 5 acre property where we installed a large swathe of plantings that can be enjoyed from an upper story porch.

The third is a small ‘courtyard garden’ where the family can enjoy seeing pollinators and wildlife visit their garden both from their kitchen table and within the patio area surrounded with plantings.

Those planning to attend the Pollinator Gardens Tour, please gather at 3:15 in the Community Solutions Parking lot behind the Fels building  (800 Livermore St., Yellow Springs). The tour will happen rain or shine so please prepare accordingly. 



Saturday, October 22nd 4:30pm

Linda Wigington & Eric Johnson

Have you ever marveled at some of the newer style homes (like Straw Bale houses and Passive Houses) and their astonishing capacity for energy-saving and then been dejected about the prospects for upgrading your own, older home? Well don’t be! Come join retrofit experts Linda Wigington and Eric Johnson on a tour of a local home and commercial building, which have been rehabilitated & revitalized through retrofitting to maximize energy efficiency. Hear the stories first-hand from the owners about how their investments in the infrastructure of their homes are now paying dividends.

Those planning to attend the Retrofit Tour, please gather at 4:15 just outside the classroom where the Deep Retrofits Workshop was being held (Antioch College, McGregor Hall)


Framing The Fight: Storytelling as Activism

Friday, October 21st 3:00pm

Sellus Wilder

Tell the story you want told!  Practiced storyteller / activist Sellus Wilder will help us learn to tell the story that we want told.  In this hands-on workshop, we'll discuss the value of distilling your efforts into a story that can generate free press, bring new stakeholders around to your perspective, and ultimately give a deeper meaning and momentum to your movement.  Participants in this workshop will collaborate to frame at least one narrative around a local or regional issue, while developing simple talking points to support the narrative. Turn your potential energy into kinetic!



Stones as Mentors: Spiritual Ecotherapy

Friday, October 21st 12:30pm

Tina Fields

As you face the big issues like climate change along with figuring out how to best live your own life, have you ever wished you had a wise elder around to give you perspective and advice? Engage in an ancient and powerful animistic practice that works with the oldest parts of the earth – stones – to gain insight into a life question. Participants will experience how the natural world can serve as spiritual advisor.


Excerpts and Discussion of "The End of the Line"

Friday, October 21st 6:00pm

Sellus Wilder

Director Statement 

"We want this film to inspire other communities to recognize that grassroots efforts really can win even in the face of impossible odds, while sharing some of the tactics and strategies that worked for us in Kentucky." 

Synopsis of The End of the Line

When two major energy companies teamed up to ship hazardous liquids from the northeast to the Gulf Coast, they didn't count on the resistance they would encounter in Kentucky. Join a bluegrassroots coalition of farmers, activists, constitutional conservatives, and religious order as they join together against the fracking industry to defeat the controversial Bluegrass Pipeline. 

This true story captured national headlines when a group of Kentucky nuns (the 'singing Sisters of Loretto') joined the fight with an inspiring act of resistance. The ensuing drama played out across farms and courtrooms across the commonwealth, eventually reaching the halls of the state legislature. 

This documentary has been made to help other communities recognize that grassroots efforts can succeed even in the face of impossible odds. It shares some of the tactics and strategies that worked against the Bluegrass Pipeline, and it ultimately makes a case for a global transition towards renewable energy.


Limits of Growth

Friday, October 21st 7:30pm

Nicole Foss

We are rapidly approaching a range of limits to growth, and these pose a fundamental challenge to our way of life. We cannot continue on the current trajectory and so must adapt to changing circumstances, notably the growing financial vulnerability. Community solutions are of the greatest importance in allowing us to serve our needs in ways that do not depend on failing centralized systems. Nicole will explore ways in which we may best address building a constructive future from the grass roots.


The One-Hundred-Year Plan

Saturday, October 22nd 7:30pm

Jim Merkel

The One-Hundred-Year Plan film is a search for a path through turbulent times. We are the generation watching humanity devour earth.  Will we pass on a parched planet or figure out how to live within earth’s limits? Travel along to far-flung and unlikely places on a quest for a world that works for all.   

Currently the reins are in the hands of powerful corporate interests and governments. Through globalization, extreme extraction and land grabs our planet races toward catastrophe. Critical planetary boundaries are being exceeded leading to climate disruption, the 6th great extinction, grinding poverty and wars. Most leaders have no other plan but to grow the economy, stimulate consumerism, and stimulate couples to have more children--the very things that drive this crisis.

This film seeks to discover if a sustainable future is even possible and if so, what adaptations and practices would be necessary. The late systems thinker and author of The Limits to Growth, Donella Meadows, using extensive modeling suggested that humanity could avoid a dramatic collapse in the 21 century by having smaller families and footprints while using technology to reduce impact and enhance wellbeing.


Friday, October 21st 9:30pm

Friday evening, at 9:30pm after Nicole Foss’s Keynote, students are invited to a discussion featuring students from different schools, such as Kenyon College and Antioch College, about activism and sustainability as it relates to their schools. There will be several student organizations, as well as student activists, talking on a panel and sharing their experiences. There will be an open discussion following the panel. Location: Antioch College Birch Hall Dining Room.


Community Economics Panel

Sunday, October 23rd 9:00pm

Matt Standard & Kristen Barker

Join us as we discuss the many exciting initiatives springing up internationally as communities work together to reclaim their economic commons. 

Commonomics’ Matt Stannard will discuss state banking and other practical responses to our current economic woes. He will also discuss the work of Commonomics, which works to weave commons concepts into law, policy, and culture.

Kristen Barker will discuss the economic importance of an urban coop for revitalizing communities and her experience running the Cinci Union Coop (based on the Mondragon model), which includes food, energy, and affordable housing cooperatives.


Regenerative Land Use

Saturday, October 22nd 9:00am

Join practitioners and educators Peter Bane and David Brandt as they lead a discussion on the practice and benefits of regenerative land use.

Peter Bane, founder of Permaculture Activist Magazine, and author of The Permaculture Handbook, is at work on a book about the intersection of land use and water cycles. Peter will frame the morning’s discussion by reflecting on soil and water cycles, which have been systematically overlooked by climate scientists seeking the causal mechanism for global heating.  Vegetation in the form of forests, grasslands, and wetlands has regulated the climate through many swings of CO2 levels.  However, the cumulative impact of 10,000 years of forest removal, agricultural degradation of soils, draining of wetlands, and urbanization—accelerating exponentially over the past three centuries—has so damaged the biosphere’s capacity to exhaust heat that we are rapidly approaching a threshold beyond which it may not be possible to reverse the process.

Carbon sequestration in the form of soil repair and revegetation will be required to restore the small water cycle over land, but if sequestration becomes the goal without regard for hydrology, those efforts may be insufficient to alter the trajectory of global warming. We need our actions to have multiple effects. What this means is that carbon must be captured by plants and soils rather than from smokestacks as now proposed by technological ideologues. If we can repair the damage we have wreaked on biotic communities, the beneficial effects on the water cycle may achieve what we must try at all costs to do: prevent further heating and reverse the trend of recent decades.

Farmer David Brandt has been experimenting with conservation practices on his Ohio farm for over forty years. He’ll reflect on his journey which began with no-till agriculture, led to  experimentation with a variety of cover crops, and has resulted in healthier soils, increased yields,  andfruitful research partnerships with the NCRS and Ohio State University.


Community Activism

Sunday, October 23rd 11:00am

Dr. Michael GainesJonna JohnsonEric Smith, Winkie Mitchell, Brian Keith and The Promise Zone Crew, & Chebrya Jeffery

Activism and Organizing come in many shapes and sizes – and luckily variety is the spice of life!!  We have a panel of activists who will share their diverse talents and experiences ---- poetry, music, dialogue, a sit-in!?!  The panel presentations will be followed by a robust Q&A, bring your questions and kinetic energy!

The Promise Zone Crew is a group of elementary school students in a 10-week Hip Hop Culture Club that meets twice a week at the Springfield YMCA to learn and discover the 5 Elements of Hip Hop: Graffitti, B-Boying/B-Girling (break dancing), Emceeing (Rapping), DJing, and Knowledge. The Promise Zone Crew will share music designed to address the pressure of youth culture and alternatives to popular Hip Hop music. 

Chebrya Jeffery is a recent graduate of Wittenberg University, community activist, and poet. She will be reciting her poetry.


Energy Democracy

Saturday, October 22nd 11:00am

Panelists: Bob BrechaNicole FossSellus Wilder, & Richard Heinberg

Energy Democracy is a new framework of looking at energy use through a multi-faceted lens-- including such factors as international and intergenerational equity, human health and agency, and decentralized ownership.  Join us as four authors, researchers, and activists reflect on their work and the intersection of energy use with climate change and economic instability.

Richard Heinberg will discuss his new book Our Renewable Future, co-authored with David Fridley, which outlines the promises and drawbacks of a system built on renewable energy.

Sellus Wilder will detail the community coalition that led to the defeat of the Bluegrass Pipeline, and reflect on the impact the fossil fuel industry has had on his native Kentucky.

Nicole Foss will give an up-to-date analysis on the status of the fossil fuel industry, and what it means for the international economic future.

Bob Brecha will talk about the renewable energy landscape in Europe and also reflect on the need for a rapid sharing of renewables technology with developing nations.


The Limits to Growth and the Limits to Freedom: Can Democracy Survive Depletion?

Sunday, October 23rd 2:30pm

Jim Merkel, Megan Bachman, & Erik Lindberg

We will look at the way curtailment, whether voluntary or forced, will challenge a democratic system that has been used for growth and imperial expansion and ever-increasing material accumulation.  We will then explore alternatives to a growth and consumption based political order, asking: how can we save democracy and freedom?  Is the building of a European-style social democracy that Bernie Sanders developed a possible beginning?  If not, what other alternatives might a sustainability activist pursue?


Enacting Commonomics: Law, Policy, and Cooperative Culture

Saturday, October 22nd 4:30pm

Matt Stannard

Saving the planet means changing our everyday material practices. These changes must be encoded not only in our interpersonal and collective culture, but also in law and policy. Matt Stannard will discuss the process of materially empathetic construction of local ordinances and organic economic practices in the service of building a cooperative economy.


Fostering Nature Connection and Joy as a Resilience Strategy

Saturday, October 22nd 2:00pm 

Tina Fields

Along with structural alternatives, psychological and spiritual resilience need to be cultivated in order to effectively meet the enormous challenges and coming changes posed by climate change. Allowing the feelings that arise to be recognized and flow though us is a key element – both the harder feelings of pain, fear, anger and denial, and also the joy and mysteries of being alive at this time. In this workshop, participants will have the opportunity to express their feelings about the situation of climate change, and to explore their own deep and abiding connection with the more-than-human world.


Incorporating Reduce and Reuse Strategies

Saturday, October 22nd 2:00pm

MaryEllen Etienne & Tom Clevenger

While recycling is an important part of the sustainability journey many municipalities and businesses that have reduced wasteful processes and implemented reuse systems first have realized the greatest savings. Join us to understand how to save money, reduce your environmental footprint, and make the best use of available resources with the first two R’s: "Reduce and Reuse". Learn how reuse can serve as the foundation for successful business ventures from a variety of local and national professionals with hands on experience. The session will cover reuse issues such as deconstruction, repair, creative reuse and the sharing economy.
Following this presentation, participants will be able to...
1) Understand the concepts of waste prevention and reuse.
2) Understand the triple bottom line benefits of reuse.
3) Understand how reuse factors into zero waste, green procurement and overall sustainability.


Getting to Know our Wild Weeds: Teachers of Resilience

Saturday, October 22nd 3:15pm

Nicole Manieri

The intention of this class is to empower participants with knowledge and experience in working with common weeds as vital sources of nutrition in preventative care. Fall is a great time for collecting roots! We will identify, learn the health-giving properties and basic processing techniques for various wild weeds. This includes beginner's instruction in herbal preparations. Participants will receive a packet of information. In this class, I come from a folk perspective that incorporates the tangible and intangible benefits of befriending these local allies.


Deep Energy Retrofits

Saturday, October 22nd 3:15pm

Linda Wigington

Explore opportunities to renovate existing structures to perform as good as, or better than, newly built high performance buildings. Gain an understanding of how to evaluate a project and the opportunities it presents. Learn from case studies and from those who have embarked on deep energy retrofit projects. This workshop will be followed by the Deep Energy Retrofit Tour of two properties in Yellow Springs.


Seeds of Peace

Saturday, October 22nd 3:15pm

Reverend Ann Fox

Careers in education, technical writing, and ministry all provided opportunities for The Reverend Ann Fox to participate in social justice causes. She embraced programs for the educationally disadvantaged, protested for peace in the Vietnam era and more modern conflicts, rallied for women’s rights, advocated for wildlife and flora greenbelts between towns in California, worked for marriage equality and transgender rights, and supported individuals and groups who worked for environmental causes. The Unitarian Universalist congregation Ann served for 13 years in Fairhaven (a town of 16,000 residents), Massachusetts, became champions of environmental justice. In 2007, they attained Certified Green Congregation status. They were instrumental in establishing in the town of Fairhaven a farmer’s market, an enhanced curbside recycling program, an environmental technology fair, and the establishment of community gardens on the church campus and in local elementary schools. Ann began to see that working for peace in the world and peace within the self is the psychological component of creating more wholesome and sustainable community. As an exemplar, Ann turned to the experience of the woman who walked 25,000 miles for peace in the 1970s and 1980s and called herself Peace Pilgrim. She has found that the teachings of Peace Pilgrim and those of the new age author and medical doctor, Deepak Chopra can guide us to develop peace within and peaceful action in the world, including in our interpersonal relationships. Ann will include in her talk the need for a Department of Peace in our country, perhaps in every country.


No-Till Farming

Saturday, October 22nd 2:00pm

David Brandt

When I planted my first cover crop — cereal rye — in 1978 to control erosion on poorly drained, hilly clay soils, I had no idea what the full ramifications of that decision would be. Since then, cover crops have become the anchor of a diverse crop rotation in our continuous no-till system.

We credit several cover crops, most of them legumes, with amazing increases in organic matter, sharply reduced fertilizer costs, elimination of soil compaction, mellower soils and deeper water infiltration.

Our goal is to keep something of value growing on the soil surface for as many months as possible. The overall result has been better-than-average yields in years of bad weather and superior harvests in favorable growing seasons. Organic matter content has increased from 0.5% to 3%, even on our steeper 18% slopes.



Community Activism Tools and Dialogue

Saturday, October 22nd 4:30pm

Moderated by Michael Gaines, Central State University

Invited activists include: 

Join in a powerful, moderated roundtable discussion regarding the various facets of Community Organizing.  Engage with invited activists as we share in-the-trench experiences and thoughts on best practice.  Explore Community Organizing tools and tactics, and gain clarity on questions such as What is Community Organizing?; What are the nuts and bolts?; What are barriers and how do we overcome them?; Where are opportunities to utilize Community Organizing today? and more.  Bring your Organizing ideas, experiences, wisdom, and questions!