Part of our mission at Homeplace is to educate people about agriculture. This can take many forms, from learning about historical methods of planting and harvesting, hosting historical re-enactments that celebrate old traditions and techniques, and preserving the buildings on the historic farm, to implementing the most cutting edge growing practices on our cropland and hosting a recipient goat herd in our pasture land. We want to connect people to the land to their food, and to each other!
Homesteading as a lifestyle has undergone a tremendous rebirth and has a rapidly growing following. People all over the country and, in fact the world are reclaiming old knowledge of self-sufficiency and living off the land. Many are working to infuse old methods with new techniques as they focus on sustainability. This lifestyle goes beyond just providing for themselves and their land's ability to yield sustenance. It focuses on the health of the land itself and on fostering a human connection to the greater ecosystem we all share. Homesteading as a lifestyle has no set parameters. People can be involved in minimal ways. Things like growing a simple summer vegetable garden or roof-top beekeeping are great ways to practice self-sufficiency. All the way up to raising alpacas and processing fiber or preserving enough homegrown meat, fruits, and vegetables to last through the winter. At its core, Homesteading is making a choice to produce the necessities of life in the home or community rather than from a store. The motivation for that choice may be based on health concerns, a wariness of supply lines, environmental concerns, or all of the above.
In the early part of 2022 we were approached by folks from the Homestead Education Program about partnering in the production of a Homesteading conference. We dove into deep discussions about what that could look like, and concluded that not only is this type of event one that aligns with our mission as an organization, but one that the beautiful spaces and buildings here at Homeplace are perfectly suited for. In September of 2022, we held South Central Kentucky's first ever Homesteading conference. It was a great success and cemented our partnership with The Homestead Education Programto make this event an annual occurrence. We hope to grow this event each year to serve the growing need for education on empowering people to live sustainably and in harmony with nature.