Participants will choose from a variety of workshops or playshops shown below.  After you register you will be e-mailed a form to sign-up for workshops that interest you the most.
Right Brain (your art/visual/music creative part of your brain)

               Left Brain
                       (your logical/rational/information
                                    part of your brain)

                                                                                              Out of the building (enough said)

Workshop/Playshop Schedule
Monday, October 8
Carol Windrum is an ordained UMC clergy whose specialized ministry focused on peace with justice.  In her living will, she is donating her body to science and is still figuring out the most earth-friendly way to recycle her remains. 
Your Last Recycling Project: Green Burials! 
1:00-2:30 PM, Monday, 10/8
Right Brain

O-kay folks, this is going to be a lighthearted approach to a "deadly" topic!  We will explore a variety of ways in which you can plan for your remains to nurture the earth instead of polluting it.  

Deb Metcalf worked as Volunteer Coordinator for Hospice House- the Josie Harper Residence where she learned that death can be dignified, especially when holistic care for the individual is incorporated with holistic care for the loved ones of the dying individual as well. She is also a certified Advanced Care Planner.  She hopes to help people realize that “death is not so awful that we should hide our faces from it and usher it out the back door”, but embrace it as yet another stage in life as we return to the earth. (Quote from Gary George, director of Hospice House in personal conversation)  

​​Jill Heng, Olive Creek Farm
Jill Heng owns Olive Creek Farm with her husband, Charlie. Both grew up on conventional row crop farms with confinement hog operations. Jill attended Truman State University (BS in Health Science) and UCLA (Masters in Public Health in Epidemiology). After returning to Lincoln, Nebraska, Jill wrote and managed grants around domestic violence and sexual assault while teaching at Doane University. With children, Jill stayed home full time to raise and homeschool their five daughters. Olive Creek Farm was created as a response to the question of how to be a strong family that lives and works together. Currently, OFC offers pasture raised chicken and beef, free range eggs and over 100 types of produce.

CSA and the honor system,
sustainable farming, "Creating Beneficial Work
1:00- 2:30 PM Monday, 10/8
left Brain

In response to the “American Conveyer Belt” which was pulling their family further apart with work, money and activities, Jill wanted to use her love of health and desire to build a strong family to create beneficial work: beneficial to their family, others and the earth. Olive Creek Farm was the answer.
Big Garden demo of Great Kid's activities for Grandparents
1:00- 2:30 PM Monday, 10/8
Out of the building

Cait Caughey, Big Garden 

Cait Caughey started as a community gardener, grew into an organic farmer, and now is focused on her work as Education Director at The Big Garden. Cait is passionate about soil health, protecting native and wild lands, seed saving, getting children in nature, and most of all being a mama to her two young children.
Sustainable Leadership
3:00 to 4:30 PM, Monday 10/8
Right Brain

This presentation about sustaining yourself and personally thriving while pursuing your passion to create a more just, vibrant and sustainable world.  It will introduce biomimicry and teach a few of nature’s secrets to truly being a resilient leader by providing a framework to learn how to thrive in the midst of dynamic change and have a positive impact in our world.

Daniel Lawse Chief Century Thinker Verdis Group

Daniel Lawse is the Chief Century Thinker and co-owner of Verdis Group, a sustainability consulting firm based in Omaha. He has undergone his own journey of finding personal sustainability while being a sustainability leader. He has journeyed through varying degrees of community engagement and burnout to a dynamic ebb and flow of personal, family and community thriving.
Justin Evertson
Green Infrastructure Coordinator
Nebraska Statewide Arboretum, Nebraska Forest Service

Justin Evertson has been involved with the Nebraska Statewide Arboretum and the Nebraska Forest Service since 1990. Justin grew up on a farm in western Nebraska where he learned an appreciation for shortgrass prairie and Nebraska’s wide-open spaces.  Since 2010 he oversees programs that provide funding, technical assistance and educational outreach for sustainable landscape enhancements in communities across the state.
Creating Beautiful and Ecologically Balanced Gardens in a Changing Climate
3:00 to 4:30 PM, Monday 10/8
Left Brain

Will explore how homeowners and property managers can develop visually pleasing and yet ecologically functional landscapes that are resilient. Great Plains native plants have evolved to be quite flexible to widely fluctuating climate within the last 10,000 years. We can work to restore a wild landscape to include non-natives will be the key emphasis.

Mindful Walking
3:00 to 4:30 PM, Monday 10/8
Out of the building

The key to the practice  of walking meditation is mindfulness. Dwelling in the present moment we are  fully aware of our surroundings, of our breath, and the precious contact of our  feet with the earth. Our lives often seem to be bound up in getting somewhere  and reaching some future goal. In walking meditation there is no destination. We  walk in order to walk; we have already reached our destination; it is the here  and now; we can move slowly, relax and smile. “Breathing in, I dwell in the  present moment. Breathing out, I know this is the only moment.”
Mike McMahon is a long-time practitioner in both the Christian (Catholic) and Buddhist Traditions.  He has been ordained as a lay member of Thich Nhat Hanh's Order of Interbeing, and has been certified as a spiritual director through Creighton University. He is a founding member of the Honey Locust Sangha- a group in Omaha, NE which practices mindful living in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh
An Introduction to Nebraska Organizations working to save our environment  
4:45 - 5:45 PM, Monday, 10/8

Six to eight environmental organizations in Nebraska will present about their programing, what they are doing, and how you can be involved.  Find out what great work is happening already and how you can plug into their work.
Tuesday October 9

Lincoln Public Schools sustainability model, with kids
1:30 - 2:30 Tuesday, 10/9
Right Brain

Sustainability in K-12 Schools: Creating the Next Generation of Environmental Stewards
The Lincoln Public Schools Sustainability Coordinator, Brittney Albin, will share her experience helping the district reduce its environmental impact while also increasing environmental and sustainability literacy among students and staff. She will discuss district programs for recycling, composting, and school gardens, as well as the LPS Green Schools Recognition Program. In addition to the measured impact of these programs, Brittney will share the challenges and lessons learned so far, as well as some resources that are available for anyone hoping to help create greener schools in their community. 

Brittney Albin is the first Sustainability Coordinator for Lincoln Public School District. She also currently serves as the board president of the Lincoln Earth Day Coalition and is a board member of the Nebraska Recycling Council and the US Green Building Council Nebraska Flatwater Chapter. She received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in Environmental Studies and a Masters of Public Administration from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

RegeNErate Nebraska: The Solution Lies In The Soil -Sustainable Family Farming
1:30 - 2:30 Tuesday, 10/9
Left Brain


Graham Christensen organized landowners against the KXL Pipeline, helped educate rural Nebraskans about climate change and renewable energy, and helped enroll 1.2 million agriculture acres into a carbon sequestration program. Christensen, President of GC Resolve, focuses on grassroots community development, mobilization, and education on the environment, is working on raising awareness about Nebraska’s rising water quality issues caused by corporate farming while educating and advocating for “regenerative” farming and ranching. Christensen recently started GC ReVOLT, a solar and alternative energy company. Graham is actively involved in Christensen Farms, Inc. with his family, and is the State Secretary for the Nebraska Farmers Union. ​

Contact with Nature: Forest Bathing
1:30 - 2:30 Tuesday, 10/9
Out of the building

After a brief introduction to the Prairie Pines Nature Preserve, the presentation focuses on contact with nature research including its benefits and proposed mechanisms including those found with “forest bathing”. It suggests that contact with nature is an accessible and affordable health intervention that provides significant ecosystem services and justification for preservation of natural places critical to species diversity and environmental sustainability.

Sue Kohles is a Naturalist and Horticulturist. She is the Coordinator of the Prairie Pines Partners, a small nonprofit that provides nature-based programming at the Prairie Pines Nature Preserve in northeast Lincoln. She was a nurse for over 25 years before obtaining a Horticulture degree from the University of Nebraska. She later made the “people plant connection” when she became a Horticultural Therapist. She grew up roaming the woods and fields of northeast Nebraska and continues her nature roaming in southeast Nebraska with husband Bob. She loves being with family and being outside and active.

Elaine Wells, M.S., Licensed Mental Health Practitioner

Elaine is a professional marriage counselor and activist with Nebraskans for Peace, and RESULTS, a citizens’ lobby for the world’s poorest people. She developed and facilitated "Pro-Life/Pro-Choice Dialogues" and “Black/White Dialogues.” "Liberal/Conservative Dialogues” are in progress.

Common Ground
3:00-4:00 PM Tuesday, 10/9
Right Brain

As politics explode, we need to talk WITH folks who disagree with us. We’ll practice skills that enabled people at Conservative-Liberal Dialogues 1.0 to have fun AND learn how to hear each other, understand underlying values, and communicate respectfully.
Click "download" to get Elaine's handout "Respond to deniers".
Prairie Birding
3:00-4:00 PM Tuesday, 10/9
Slide Show

Enjoy this chat about Audubon's Plants for Birds program filled with great information about planting for birds, bugs, and wildlife in your area and how important this can be for our birds dealing with climate change and other threats to habitat and resources.
 Jason St Sauver (“The Birdnerd”) Director of Education and Outreach, Nebraska Audubon Springreek Prairie

Jason is the Director of Education & Outreach for Audubon Nebraska working out of Spring Creek Prairie Audubon Center. Originally from South Dakota, Jason is a self-proclaimed "Birdnerd" and loves sharing his knowledge about birds, conservation, and all things nature will audiences of all ages and backgrounds. He has been working in outdoor education for over ten years across the country for both Audubon and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. 

The Art of Looking and Seeing
3:00-4:00 PM Tuesday, 10/9
Out of the building
Nature journaling is the regular recording of personal observations, perceptions and reflections about the natural world around you. For this workshop you’ll need to bring a blank notebook & pencils to make notes & a shoulder bag for stowing your tools.​

Cassandra Dean, Mahoney Naturalist

Cassandra Dean, Mahoney Park’s naturalist will teach this workshop to you provide with ways to deepen your personal connection to nature.