Detailed Class Descriptions

Here is a selection of our classes from the 2017 gathering, which are representative of the subjects and skills the 2018 Firefly Gathering will offer. We will update with the 2018 classes in the spring.

 

Thursday (6/29/2017) – Morning

Luke Learningdeer

Edible, medicinal, useful and wondrous Plants of Field and Forest

Let’s walk and meet some of the astounding and generous plants of the gathering, and discus their Edible, Medicinal, and Wondrous gifts.

Bring a notebook, and a spirit of exploration. We’ll be diving deep into the green and wild world.

Lauren Jacobs

10 basic hand stitches you should know

This class will cover 10 basic hand stitches for you to use everyday. If we complete all 10 within the time aloud, there will be “bonus round” stitches. Everyone will leave with a sampler that they’ve executed.

No sewing experience necessary

Fuz Sanderson

40 Minute Forks

40 minute forks: Thursday Morning, Friday morning, Sunday Morning,

Don’t eat your salad with a spoon! This a wood carving gateway skill, we’ll make a fork you can use in the wilderness, or in the office…

Age 12 and above. you will need a sharp knife, and you will feel empowered.

Sangoma

Activating Natures Instincts Within

Participants will revisit the life map of their Birth for the perspective of what are the Elements and ingredients necessary for the fertilization of the Soil of the Soul. By carefully Taking the internal view of the Gardener we examine what is growing in the garden of our lives daily and as the seasons and climate of our world is so rapidly changing.

What personal and community resources are we in possession of to support our connection and relationship to Nature?

Zac Fittipaldi

Black Ash Berry Baskets (All Day Class)

Learn to weave your very own berry-picking basket with black ash!

Age limit: 12 and older

Materials Fee: $20

Tod Kershaw

Blacksmithing Basics

This class is for people who want to get started blacksmithing! This information-rich class will cover topics such as choosing charcoal vs. coal, building your forge, choosing your material (raw steel vs. re-using/recycling old metal), and repairing broken metal tools. Those who signup will get at least 5-10 minutes of hammer-time. Whoever wants to come can come and watch but only the 12 who sign up are guaranteed time with a hammer.

Mateo Ryall

Capoeira Foundations

Capoeira is an ancient martial art that was brought to Brazil from Africa, where it incorporated dance, musical circles and disguised itself in order to stay alive in the slave communities. This art embodies skill that can empower and train the individual for conflict, resiliency and the ability to de-escalate conflict. We’ll cover the foundation of movement, and practice techniques to help strengthen your reflexes, versatility and movement to aggression, hostility and the unexpected.

Barron Brown

Carve a Wooden Hair Comb

Carve a beautiful hair comb for beauty and function with Barron Brown.

Bring a sharp knife.

Age limit: 10 and older unless accompanied by an adult.

Grant Adkisson

Chi Gung and Tai Chi Push Hands

Mobilize and warm the joints with the Buddhist Longevity exercises. Be still with standing meditation and move your energy with intention through Chi Gung. Learn the basics of Tai Chi Push Hands, the bridge between Tai Chi form and martial application.

Graham Wesley

Earth Medicine for Embodiment

Our relationships with self and planet are powerful resources for us as we navigate healing for ourselves, our communities, and the earth. Gather with us to explore practices that invite us to deeper awareness of our bodies and the integration of body, mind, and spirit, including breathing and mindfulness practices for layered integration as well as traditional herbal and stone medicine, to guide you in connecting with self and earth for transformative healing wherever you are.

john kraus

Edge Tools Sharpening and Care: Axes and Adzes

Use and sharpening of edge tools. This session will focus on Axes and Adzes, but we can sharpen and go over maintenance for whatever edge tools you bring. Participants are encouraged to bring your own tools and sharpening equipment.

Chelsea Fox

Food Preservation through the Seasons

Canning, drying, fermentation, freezing … so many choices for how to preserve what you’re growing, foraging and finding at the farmer’s market. This class will focus on what preservation methods work best for which vegetables and fruits and Chelsea will share her creative recipes and seasonal flow plan for putting food away. There will be samples!

Anthony Troia

Intro to Forest Gardening

This is a discussion of my approach to forest gardening that has developed over the past decade. This is not so much a “how to”, but rather “how to approach” with regards to agroforestry. Discussion will include, species selection for YOUR site, animals in agroforestry systems, forage production, water harvesting, soil building strategies, managing weeds….and then some (:

Jason Drevenak

Making buffalo leather shoulder bags

Making buffalo leather shoulder bags

If the shoulder bag you carry just isn’t big enough come and learn to design, lay out,and create a medium, large or Xtra large buffalo leather shoulder bag to put all your cool primitive stuff in. All materials (including leather, buckskin for lacing and tools) provided. Come by Drev’s camp to see what a finished bag looks like.

Materials fee is:

$20 for a medium bag,

$30 for a large bag,

and $40 for an Xl bag!

Shawn Kelly

Making fire with flint and steel

Making fire using flint and steel strikers.

Kathleen Player

Name of class: Sourdough fermenting for all your bread kneads

How to make your own sourdough starter and use it for breads, pizza crusts, even gingerbreads with a focus on gluten-free sourdoughs (the technique can be applied to ancient wheat flours too). Along with sampling different foods, we’ll discuss trouble-shooting starters, the importance of sourdough, phytic acid and have time for Q&A. All samples are gluten-free, dairy-free, and sugar-free.

Kelly Gaskill

Naturally dyed prayer flags

In this class we will dye squares of fabric using local plants and mushrooms. String these pieces up to make your own prayer flags! You will get to experiment with different dyeing and eco-printing techniques. This is not an intro to natural dyeing class, but you will learn some of the basic techniques as well as some of the best local plants to use for color.

Jessica Kaufman

Needle Felting

This is a fantastic skill to have: turning loose wool roving into strong, useful felt WITHOUT needing any water or soap or manual strength for scrubbing/agitating! Using one simple (and very affordable) tool, the barbed needle, we will create faces, figures, pouches, patches, etc with sheep’s wool and the barbed needle only. Everyone is successful in this class, and projects turn out better than most folks imagine. This is a popular class because needle felting is so portable: you can bring your project to any lecture class and work away quietly while listening to other instructors. Come early (Thursday) or late (Sunday) in the Gathering and learn everything you need to create a beautifully felted project. You can also repair holes in wool clothing with needle felting, and add decoration to natural fiber garments. Imagine felting sweet vines and leaves pictorially in woll onto your favorite hat, jacket, sweater, or backpack… See you there! Materials fee is $5/person.

Lyca Mikhael

Nest Intentions Ceremony

We will gather in Old-Ways Circle to give Gratitude to the Land, Call in our Allies, Bare Witness unto One Another, and Cast our Intentions into the Nest of our Community Cultivation. Let’s make an Egg! Come with your Highest Intentions and Medicines! Facilitation by Lycaonthropology.

Sara Callaway

Peacemaking

What is peace? How do we cultivate it? There are many elements that go into peaceful relations, including communication approaches, structural setups, power dynamics, internal tracking, and personal priorities. At the heart of it all is respect. Come explore an 8 shields approach to Peacemaking. If you long for greater inner peace, if you deeply desire more peace in your relationships and in your community, this is a conversation you may want to join in.

Marc Williams

Plant Family Patterns: The Key to See

Plant Family Patterns can greatly aid in demystifying the “green wall” of species around us. Approximately 350,000 species of flowering plants are known to global science. These species have been grouped into around 15,000 genera and over 400 flowering plant families. About 200 flowering plant families grow in the temperate world where it annually frosts and or freezes. You will know something significant about the majority of plants that you see in the temperate world if you learn the top 30 families around you. It is often possible to guess whether a plant is edible, medicinal, or poisonous simply by the family it occupies. However, some exceptions are important to know as well. We will engage in a walk and talk around the Firefly Gathering grounds where we will delve into the major plant families of the Southern USA. Students will reinforce plant identification skills by observing family patterns such as leaf, flower and fruit types. Uses including edibility, medicinality, craft, wildlife promotion and landscape beauty will be discussed. Participants will gain a more holistic understanding of the major plants comprising the Southern US flora and their potential ecological and ethnobotanical applications.

Aileen Peterson

Sacred Beekeeping: An Introduction to the Path of the Melissae

Join Aileen Marie of LADY MOON to explore the ancient tradition of the Bee Priestesses and how we can practice bee-centered, holistic, shamanic beekeeping in today’s world.

forest hilyer

Stalking Basics

Come learn the basics of stalking! This is a great skill to develop for getting closer to wildlife whether for observation, photography, hunting or other purposes. In this class we will discuss theory and reality of stalking, plus learn and practice stalking technique. We may even play some 🙂

Steve Torma

The Art of Intimacy (NVC) Level 1

Staying centered in any situation, moving beyond stalemates with Nonviolent Communication, forgiving others and yourself, hearing the yes behind every no, being flexible without being submissive, expressing anger or disappointment without judgment or blame, and more. With the former president of Earthaven Ecovillage and co-founder of The REAL Center.

Patrick Walker

Tomahawk and Knife Throwing

This class is an introduction into Weapon Throwing and the basic physical intelligence employed therein. I’m no champion thrower and really just enjoy facilitating a practice environment that’s safe. To that end, class will be light on structure, heavy on practice, with everyone’s safety paramount over all.

Do you Qualify for a degree in physical physics? Let’s find out, one throw at a time.

*Class fee is a suggested donation $1 per student, per class, but is not required.

Robert Eidus

Water – designing for water on the land and homestead

Designing for water use and flow on the land and homestead. Integrating water into the permaculture system. How to tap a spring. And more!

Thursday (6/29/2017) – Afternoon

Debbie Lienhart

Bamboo Wind Chimes

In this class we will make wind chimes out of bamboo, which is locally abundant and needs to be used. Basic supplies are provided. You are welcome to bring decorative objects for your wind chimes. This is a beginning level class using hand saws and drills. Bring a sharp knife if you have one.

Zac Fittipaldi

Black Ash Berry Baskets (Part 2)

Finish making our very own berry picking baskets with black ash.

Age limit: 12 and up

Materials Fee: $20

Tod Kershaw

Blacksmithing Basics

This class is for people who want to get started blacksmithing! This information-rich class will cover topics such as choosing charcoal vs. coal, building your forge, choosing your material (raw steel vs. re-using/recycling old metal), and repairing broken metal tools. Those who signup will get at least 5-10 minutes of hammer-time. Whoever wants to come can come and watch but only the 12 who sign up are guaranteed time with a hammer.

Rachel Shopper

Bowdrill 101

Let’s make fire! In this class, students will assemble and use their own bowdrill friction fire kits. We will cover how to choose and prepare the different “ingredients”, how to maximize efficiency with good form, and basic troubleshooting. Please bring a knife, as there will be some carving involved.

Yona FrenchHawk

Building the Cherokee Sweat Lodge

Help build the Sweat Lodge for this year’s Gathering!

Yona is a full blooded member of The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Born and raised on the Qualla Boundary in Cherokee NC Yona has a deep connection to Turtle Island/Mother Earth. He will share the Cherokee Prophesy of Feminine and Masculine and how they live in balance to honor all life and living things. Through ceremony, song, and honoring, Yona has been tasked by his Tsalagi elders to continue to weave the web of life by sharing the Tsalagi way and helping to connect all the colors of the rainbow.

Prepare to do some hands-on work!

(Thursday Afternoon Building of Sweat Lodge participation is optional – you don’t have to help build in order to sweat later)

Ages 18 and up only

talcon quinn

Bystander Intervention – How We Can Prevent Sexual Assault and Other Forms of Harassment

This class is for preteens thru adults who are respectful and have an open mind; and are able to handle the mature subject manner.

Bystander Intervention is when a bystander chooses not just to bear witness to a hurtful act (or actions) but to intervene in away that helps the victim without escalating the situation.

We will define Sexual Assault, discuss how it is perpetuated in our society and communities and learn ways to combat it. As well as other forms of harassment.

Prevention of harassment and assaults begins with individual awareness and understanding which leads to community awareness and understanding. We (community members, friends and family) can combat harassment and assaults by learning the signs of micro aggressions that can lead to larger acts of violence and by exploring intervention strategies so that we can be prepared to intervene when we see it happening.

Bari Caton

Card-Weaving for Beginners

Learn the ancient art of card-weaving using a deck of 12 punched cards. You’ll be setting up and weaving a multicolored pattern about 24 inches long plus six inches of fringe on each end. Wear it as a headband, armband or hatband. If you work industriously, you can have it completely finished by the time class ends. I will repeat the same class on Thursday afternoon and Friday afternoon. Older children (ages 10+) welcome, but check with instructor first. Please be on time; we have a lot to do! Please bring a waist-type belt and a blunt metal dinner knife.

Ash Aymond

Clay Cornucopia – An Introduction to Natural Building

Learn about the basic building blocks of natural building with a unique focus on each element – clay, fiber, sand and water – and their role in this timeless building practice. You’ll walk away with a profound understanding and appreciation of these simple materials and take home a cool Clay Crucible of your own design!

Chloe Buzzotta

Creating a Resilient Future

We live in unsettling times. How do we seek security in this climate of environmental, social, and political disarray? This class is meant to take all of the tools and courses taught at Firefly and integrate it into our collective future. Places like ecovillages, transition towns, and permaculture communities actively use these earth skills as a means of survival currently. During the class we will cover these forms of living that already exist and how you can get involved with this movement.

Chelsea Fox

Creative Kraut Fermentation

Join us for a inspiring workshop on how to become a vegetable fermentation artist! The class will focus on the practical application of vegetable fermentation techniques including the skills needed to make the cabbage-based ferments, kraut & kimchi. We will make a batch of kraut in the class, sample some previously made krauts and attendees will leave with the knowledge of how to experiment further in their home kitchen. Come with questions and stories ferment failures and successes!

Rachel Watersong

Dealin with Feelings

Do you sometimes find that strong emotions like anger, shame or despair make it hard for you to do the stuff that brings meaning and joy to your life? What if you could transform your relationship with your emotions so that instead of battling them as enemies, they could become trusted friends that bring you crucial information and connection? In this class, we’ll explore a handful of simple, practical skills that can help you do two things: tame the intense body feelings that come with strong emotions so that you can stay wise and centered even when the storm is raging, and bring acceptance and mindfulness to your emotions so that your brain and body begin to heal from the cycle of “freaking out and shutting down.” The focus of the class will be hands-on practice of the strategies and skills, rather than discussing, processing, or analyzing ourselves or each other. Believe it or not, working with emotions can be fun!

Justina Prenatt

Defying Gender Constructs to Raise Fulfilled Children

The generation of children we raise today will be the leaders of tomorrow, and we have an obligation to these children and to the future of Earth and all peoples to guide young people to become their most aware, fully actualized, empowered selves. We will explore what the gender constructs are for girls and boys in our culture and what the impact is of having a limited scope of gender roles forced on children (which will be illuminating on how we have been impacted as adults, as well). We will learn techniques to help children maintain positive self-esteem, develop positive self-images, to experience and healthily express the full range of human emotions, to be fair in peer relationships and to relate well across gender lines, to develop effective problem-solving skills, to learn assertive communication skills, and to honor their own unique interests and life paths. Appropriate for parents, teachers, mentors, health care providers, counselors, and anyone seeking to support children and young adults.

Wolf Bravo

Demystifying Sharpening

Learn the delicate and critical art of knife and tool sharpening. This class will focus on, developing good techniques for different edge tools, as well as, where to find quality materials and tools for bargain prices.

Types of stones: oil, water, wet, natural, and man-made.

Other media available: sand paper, butcher steel, ceramics, diamond impregnated plates.

Design follows function:

Blades: design, uses, alloys, hardness and angles.

The three stages of blade’s edge: dull edge, damage edge, and restoration of functionality.

Evaluating the task: initial observation, materials needed, and safety tips, plus deciding to keep current function or create a new design.

Techniques for each stage of sharpening: honing, sharpening, and restoring the bevels and micro bevels.

Sangoma

Earth-Mage Tool Making

Medicine Wheels, Shields, Talking sticks, Prayer Arrows, tools that assist in the daily navigation of our Personal Destiny…through the ancient’s teachings of numerology and astrology participants return to their original birth plan and where EXACTLY they are in this season of destiny. Once this information is revealed…we are better able to create from nature TOOLS that support walking, talking and living our Truth in Authenticity.

john kraus

Edge Tools Sharpening & Care – Drawknives and Spokeshaves

class will focus on drawknives and spokeshaves. We will sharpen,set up and use. Other edge tools will be discussed,demonstrated or sharpened as time permits. Participants are encouraged to bring their own tools and sharpening equipment.

Sabrina Squires

Egg-Tanned Rabbit Hides

Using eggs, smoke and a little bit of elbow grease, students will flesh, tan and soften their own rabbit hides. This process can take a few hours or a day or two, depending on the amount of time the student has to devote to their hide. All tools, eggs, sewing material and two rabbit hides each will be provided to students.

Robert Eidus

Exotic Invasive Plants of the Southern Forests

Nonnative, Invasive plants of the Southern forests. This will be both a plant walk and a discussion. We’ll also discuss how to use some of these plants for food or medicine, or other uses.

Baram Kim

Fermentation:Elements of Life

Food be Medicine Workshop by master chef Baram. Workshop will begin with the history of fermentation & survival of the humankind. Fermentation has been part of Baram’s life since childhood as he was born and raised in Korea. Learn how to become a fermentation master. This class will cover beverage, vegetable & fruit fermentation. You will be sampling delicious world of Fermentation and take the knowledge to your own kitchen!

robin allison

Field Botany 101

Learn how to confidently identify edible, medicinal, and all the rest of the plants with Wandering-Botanist-On-Call, Robin Allison!

James Clinkscales

Fintknapping

In this class you will learn the basic methods of flintknapping so you can make an arrowhead or spear point. This includes percussion and pressure flaking techniques using stone, wood and antler tools. Copper Ishi’s will be used for pressure flaking.

Glenn Ingram

Furniture From a Log – Part 1

Part 1 to making furniture from a log: Making the Parts from the Log. Come learn how to process a log into boards, chair legs, seats, and other parts for furniture. You can make furniture from firewood!

Andrew Goodheart

Home Orchards

Growing fruit organically in western NC, as well as the southeast in general, is challenging. We will cover just about everything you need to know, in order to be successful.

liz thecowgirl

Ice Cream Farm Social and Chat

A family friendly farm chat and ICE CREAM SOCIAL! We will make raw, homemade ice cream together, sharing the burden of churning the raw ingredients (cream, milk and eggssorry vegans) into the deliciousness we call ice cream. The discussion will be guided by interested participants, and we’ll share what we know (or don’t know) about any farm topic you bring up.

Topics could include:

Rotational Grazing

Cow Handling

Cow Health

Portable Electric Fencing for cows, sheep, poultry, pigs, dogs

Alternative Feeds (including spent brewer’s grain and silage)

Pastured Poultry

Pastured Pigs

Livestock Guardian Dogs

Breeding

Various Management Strategies

Milk Processing (cream, butter, kefir, yogurt, ice cream)

Sliding Scale donation $3-10

Eric Blevins

Knot, a class

Come learn a variety of knots and hitches that can be used for many applications: tarps, vehicle tie-downs, climbing, etc.

Emily Bell

Make a Turkey Wing Broom!

Join me for this beginner’s class and walk away with your very own turkey wing broom! These are small, beautiful brooms made of broomcorn (sorghum bicolor) that are perfect to use with your dustpan or near your fireplace.

We will briefly discuss the history as well as how to grow broomcorn. Participants must have moderate hand strength.

There is a $12 materials fee- please bring it with you to class.

Jason Drevenak

Making buffalo leather shoulder bags

Making buffalo leather shoulder bags

If the shoulder bag you carry just isn’t big enough come and learn to design, lay out,and create a medium, large or Xtra large buffalo leather shoulder bag to put all your cool primitive stuff in. All materials (including leather, buckskin for lacing and tools) provided. Come by Drev’s camp to see what a finished bag looks like.

Materials fee is:

$20 for a medium bag,

$30 for a large bag,

and $40 for an Xl bag!

Chelsea Morning

Netted Water Bottle Holder

Learn basic Macrame’ and create a netted water bottle holder.

Luna Dietrich

Rewilding Your Sexual Sovereignty

Connecting and accepting our sexuality is a foundation for empowerment. But modern dominator culture can often oppress

our ability to think for ourselves… in every direction of life, but especially our sexual and emotional intelligence. So let us rewild!.. by dismantling old beliefs based in shame and ownership that aren’t serving our natural desires and human agency.

Through meditation, embodiment practices, and writing exercises we will dive deeply into self loving awareness to acknowledge and liberate the choices that celebrate our sexual sovereignty.

There will be no explicit touch with one another, rather this a chance to go deep and claim your autonomy. All humans are welcome! When the class begins it will be a closed container, please try not to come late. And please bring a journal, something to write with if possible, and anything to make you comfortable in the space.

Lorin Purifoy

Spirit Ceremony with Flowers, Trees and Stones

I invite you into Ceremony. To touch upon the web of life and drop into our intuitive nature. I will reveal my process of making spirit essences (energetics) with ceremony and we’ll co-create either a flower or tree essence that we’ll journey with after. Spirit Essences (most are familiar with flower essences) are vibrational medicine and support us with emotional balance and a means for deep healing.

Our time together will be a weaving of meditation, stone medicine, spirit essence crafting and tuning into the unique messages that our Nature Allies wish to share.

If you’d like to receive a dosage bottle of the essence we create, please bring $3. You may also wish to bring a journal, something to lay on and water of course.

I look forward to sharing the journey.

Becky Beyer

Successful Homestead Planning: Year Round Food Gettin

Tackle the sometimes overwhelming prospect of planning a year round, productive garden with some simple organizational tools. We go beyond permaculture to incorporate French Intensive, Bio Intensive and Bio Dynamic Methods to create a workable farm and garden plan, as well as address the available wild foods and unusual perennials that can help to ensure something good is worth gettin’ all year round.

Steve Torma

The Art of Intimacy (NVC) Level 2

For those with some familiarity with Nonviolent Communication. Using NVC Dance Floors and Somatic Experiencing to move from pain to compassion, from the illusion of conflicting needs to finding win/win strategies, from grasping for approval to deep inner peace, and from negativity to the natural joy of life. With the former president of Earthaven Ecovillage and co-founder of The REAL Center.

Patrick Walker

Tomahawk and Knife Throwing

This class is an introduction into Weapon Throwing and the basic physical intelligence employed therein. I’m no champion thrower and really just enjoy facilitating a practice environment that’s safe. To that end, class will be light on structure, heavy on practice, with everyone’s safety paramount over all.

Do you Qualify for a degree in physical physics? Let’s find out, one throw at a time.

*Class fee is an optional donation, $1, per class, but is not required.

Spencer Two Dogs

Trapping; the big picture

Students will learn about legal and ethical considerations of trapping, the psychology of motivation, and look at a variety of trap systems found around the world. Behavior engineering will be discussed with perspectives from aboriginal people, military, and professional trappers.

Students will learn about cordage, rope, wire and salvaging or making necessary materials.

We will cover basic carving techniques and break down anatomy of trap systems including a detailed look at deadfalls, snares, drags, vehicle and mantraps.

Bill Parravano

Working out the Kinks: Neck & Shoulders

Working out the kinks: Neck & Shoulders – Teach your body to recover faster after primitive & homesteading skills.

Got a sore, stiff, tight, achy, or painful neck and shoulders? Then this class is for you!

Learn the secrets of your body’s nervous system. You will walk away from this class with a working knowledge of how to eliminate tension in your neck and shoulders no matter what your age.

Bring your own pillows, blankets and yoga mats to get the most benefit out of this class

Thursday (6/29/2017) – Evening

Yona FrenchHawk

Cherokee Sweat Lodge

Yona is a full-blooded member of The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Born and raised on the Qualla Boundary in Cherokee NC Yona has a deep connection to Turtle Island/Mother Earth. He will share the Cherokee Prophesy of Feminine and Masculine and how they live in balance to honor all life and living things. Through ceremony, song, and honoring, Yona has been tasked by his Tsalagi elders to continue to weave the web of life by sharing the Tsalagi way and helping to connect all the colors of the rainbow.

Drinks lots of fluids. Men will be wearing shorts and women we ask to wear a skirt or wrap and a loose fitting top that covers the shoulders. Also bring a towel.

Age Limit 18 and Older ONLY

liz thecowgirl

Evening Cow Milking

We will gather from 7:30-8:30 to discuss the basics of cow handling, and each participant will have the opportunity to milk Honey, our beloved Guernsey cow.

Bring a jar or vessel for a taste!

Children should be accompanied by an adult.

Please wear closed toed shoes.

All are welcome to come watch and chat. Only those signed up will be able to try their hands at milking.

Phil Ferguson

Swordplay Arena

The Wandering Swordsmen will run the Swordplay Arena each evening from 8-10pm during the last light of the day Wednesday-Sunday. We will run field battles from 8-9pm, including games like capture the flag, javelin dodgeball, and archery tag! From 9-10pm we will light up the 20′ wide arena tent for tournament style games including 1v1 and 2v2 tournaments with single sword, sword and shield, dual sword, and other weapon styles.

All our boffer gear is made for full contact combat and tested monthly for compliance with the regulations provided by The Belegarth Medieval Combat Society, a national boffer league with very strict standards for safety and game play. All our swords, shields, spears, javelins, bows, arrows, and other gear are designed to safely engage in the highly physical and athletic sport of boffing, or padded weapon combat. All players must have a waiver on file to play, and minors must have their waiver filled out by a legal guardian. The waiver is available to fill out online at the following link, and we will have paper copies on site as well.

https://www.smartwaiver.com/v/wanderingswordsmen/

We will also have gear for sale and information about our summer camps and classes for all ages of people who are interested in this growing sport! Come check out our donation based weekly battles every Sunday at Carrier Park in West Asheville from 1-3pm for kids and 3-6pm for adults! See our website at www.thewanderingswordsmen.com for more information.

Alinahh Ever

Thursday night Fire Songcircle

We will sing songs that honor our selves, our relationships, the Earth and our connection with zer. When we sing together, we are breathing together and tuning with each other in a powerful way. Around the fire, our village gathers and we share songs that have touched us in some way. Come sing with us and truly be a member of the singing species that we are. All welcome.

Led by Alinahh Ever and Zeke Kotikovsky

Patrick Walker

Tomahawk and Knife Throwing

This class is an introduction into Weapon Throwing and the basic physical intelligence employed therein. I’m no champion thrower and really just enjoy facilitating a practice environment that’s safe. To that end, class will be light on structure, heavy on practice, with everyone’s safety paramount over all.

Do you Qualify for a degree in physical physics? Let’s find out, one throw at a time.

Class will start around 4:30

*Class fee is an optional donation, $1, per class, but is not required.

Friday (6/30/2017) – Early Morning (before breakfast)

Tara Rawson

Acrobatic Partner Yoga

Start your day with movement, playfulness and lots of laughter! Meet and connect with your fellow friends at Firefly each morning. We’ll practice trust exercises, acrobatic partner play to strengthen and lengthen and we’ll always finish with thai massage techniques. You will go through your day feeling strong, energized and relaxed. Beginners are welcome and no partner is needed. Bring a mat, blanket, towel or skin.

liz thecowgirl

Morning Milking

We will gather from 8:30-9:30 to discuss the basics of cow handling, and each participant will have the opportunity to hand milk one of our Jersey or Guernsey cows.

Bring a jar or vessel for a taste!

Children should be accompanied by an adult.

Please wear closed toed shoes.

All are welcome to come hang out and chat about cows. Only those who’ve signed up will be able to milk.

Patrick Walker

Tomahawk and Knife Throwing

This class is an introduction into Weapon Throwing and the basic physical intelligence employed therein. I’m no champion thrower and really just enjoy facilitating a practice environment that’s safe. To that end, class will be light on structure, heavy on practice, with everyone’s safety paramount over all.

Do you Qualify for a degree in physical physics? Let’s find out, one throw at a time.

*Class fee is an optional donation, $1, per class, but is not required.

Friday (6/30/2017) – Morning

Fuz Sanderson

40 Minute Forks

40 minute forks: Thursday Morning, Friday morning, Sunday Morning,

Don’t eat your salad with a spoon! This a wood carving gateway skill, we’ll make a fork you can use in the wilderness, or in the office…

Limit 20 people, Age 12 and above. You will need a sharp knife, and you will feel empowered.

Daniel Foor

Ancestor Reverence and Cultural Healing

With Daniel and Sangoma.

Everyone has loving and wise ancestors, and by reaching out for their support we access tremendous vitality for personal and family healing. Our ancestors help us to clarify our destiny, important relationships, and work in the world. Attendees will learn some basic ways to engage family and older lineage ancestors for guidance, healing, and inspiration as well as practices to establish boundaries with the dead who are not yet at peace. Our time will also consider ways the the unwell dead already speak through many of our current conflicts (e.g., sexism, racism, colonialism) and how we can more consciously invoke ancestral support for cultural healing. All are welcome, including those new to practices of ancestor reverence, those intimated by the crunchy activist vibe surrounding social and ecological justice, and those with a troubled family or no knowledge of their ancestors.

Alexandra Tait

Archery Lesson and Shoot

Stretch warmup, professional lesson and supervised shooting. All equipment included. We will use training fiberglass recurve bows with wooden arrows shooting into straw bales.

$5 arrow fee covers wear and tear on arrows and equipment!

Lyca Mikhael

Barefoot Walking, Stalking and Running

Comfortably and consciously move on your bare feet! Learn the gentle cycle of fore-foot walking, the tactful stalking approach of Tom Brown, and the energy-efficient pose-method of forefoot running. Gain the agility of a fox and prowess of a panther!

Luke Learningdeer

Bird Language, The Conversation of the Wilds!

The astounding World of Birds and Bird Language offers us new and novel insights and unexpected wisdoms that greatly expand our Awareness and understanding of the wild landscape.

Come ready for an inspiring class that dives deep into the lives of our local feathered friends, and teaches practical techniques to begin the life changing journey of joining the Conversation of the Wilds.

Tod Kershaw

Blacksmithing Basics

This class is for people who want to get started blacksmithing! This information-rich class will cover topics such as choosing charcoal vs. coal, building your forge, choosing your material (raw steel vs. re-using/recycling old metal), and repairing broken metal tools. Those who signup will get at least 5-10 minutes of hammer-time. Whoever wants to come can come and watch but only the 12 who sign up are guaranteed time with a hammer.

Barron Brown

Bowl Carving

Come and learn how to carve a wooden bowl with hand tools with Barron Brown.

Bring a sharp knife.

Age limit: 10 and older unless accompanied by an adult.

Ian Snider

Chainsaw 101

We will go over the basic care and use of chainsaws, how to safely fell a tree, and break it down into useable material. Receive step by step instruction from a seasoned woodsman and his family who make their living from the Appalachian Forest.

Rebekah Luhrs

Circle Ceremony (Yoga Flow)

This is a yoga flow done in a circle. The circular shape represents unity and the desire to co-exist together in harmony. The goal is to move as one, breathe as one and sound as one, uniting everyone included in the circle. In this ceremony, participants explore new ways to practice movement and breath as one. With the support of others, balance postures in yoga become steady; with the assist of others, stretches sink deeper and feel especially delicious, and simply the physical connection to another promotes communication, openness, and support. In closing, we discuss how and if we can incorporate this level of support within our existing communities and what the benefits would be.

Bring water and a yoga mat if you have one (or a blanket).

Wolf Bravo

Demystifying Sharpening

Learn the delicate and critical art of knife and tool sharpening. This class will focus on, developing good techniques for different edge tools, as well as, where to find quality materials and tools for bargain prices.

Types of stones: oil, water, wet, natural, and man-made.

Other media available: sand paper, butcher steel, ceramics, diamond impregnated plates.

Design follows function:

Blades: design, uses, alloys, hardness and angles.

The three stages of blade’s edge: dull edge, damage edge, and restoration of functionality.

Evaluating the task: initial observation, materials needed, and safety tips, plus deciding to keep current function or create a new design.

Techniques for each stage of sharpening: honing, sharpening, and restoring the bevels and micro bevels.

Kelly Gaskill

Eco-print scarves

Eco-printing, it’s like natural dyes, but different! Come learn how easy and fun it is to capture the image of our local (and not so local) flora. We will be printing on silk scarves.

john kraus

Edge Tools Sharpening and Care: Knives and Scrapers

Use and sharpening of edge tools. This session will focus on Knives and Scrapers, but we can sharpen and go over maintenance for whatever edge tools you bring. Participants are encouraged to bring your own tools and sharpening equipment.

Sabrina Squires

Egg-Tanned Rabbit Hides

Using eggs, smoke and a little bit of elbow grease, students will flesh, tan and soften their own rabbit hides. This process can take a few hours or a day or two, depending on the amount of time the student has to devote to their hide. All tools, eggs, sewing material and two rabbit hides each will be provided to students.

Graham Wesley

Embodied Healing for Practitioners, Activists, & Lovers of this World

Join us to connect deeply with our earth mother and listen for your path; discern the skills and characteristics you are drawn to offer to this collective movement. Engage with meditation, stone wisdom, and deep personal relationship to open your heart to the power within and take the next steps in your journey as an essential member of our earthly community.

James Clinkscales

Flintknapping

In this class you will learn the basic methods of flintknapping so you can make an arrowhead or spear point. This includes percussion and pressure flaking techniques using stone, wood and antler tools. Copper Ishi’s will be used for pressure flaking.

Nancy Basket

Freeform Kudzu Flower-Gathering Baskets

Split kudzu vine and random weave a vessel to gather wild things. Dazzle other learners in a wild forage walk with your new basket on one arm and one hand free to pick! Hear all about kudzu, listen to Cherokee stories and bring questions about Native culture.

Jason Drevenak

Friction Fire Free For All

This class will introduce the fundamentals of fire by friction using the hand and bow and drill methods. We will work on components of each method, body posture and mechanics, material choices and natural tinder. Come by for the whole session or just stop by to work on something specific.

Aileen Peterson

Gaia as Healer: An Introduction to Forest Bathing & Earthing

Join Aileen Marie of LADY MOON to delve into discussion and practice around the Earth-organism ‘Gaia’ as Healer. We will discuss the use of Forest Bathing and Earthing for promoting holistic mind-body-spirit wellness and then go on a guided forest bathing/earthing session with meditation and drumming sound therapy offering.

Andrew Goodheart

Home Orchards

Growing fruit organically in western NC, as well as the southeast in general, is challenging. We will cover just about everything you need to know, in order to be successful.

Abby Artemisia

How to be a Forager

Abby, a botanist, herbalist, and forager, will talk about the basics of plant identification and how to get started or continue along this journey. We’ll look at and discuss some helpful resources and tools for learning how to work with the plants. We’ll also talk about how to learn the plant families. Once we recognize how they’re related, we’re given clues of how best to work with them. Then we’ll get to go a plant walk, using our senses, to identify, smell, touch, taste, and learn more about these plants. We’ll also talk about safe and ethical harvesting. Bring your questions, field guides, notebooks, and cameras, along with hiking boots, rain jackets, and water bottles.

Sara Callaway

Human Life Cycle, Stages of Life, & Rites of Passage

This class focuses on the human life cycle and how our journeys unfold over time. Well discuss the stages of life, core competencies to develop (nature tasks, culture tasks), rites of passage, and how ones community can impact this experience. Many of these ideas are drawn from the work of Bill Plotkin (Nature and the Human Soul) and Paul Raphael (an Odawa Elder), as well as from personal experience. Life is a continual process of transformation. Learn how to support the changes.

Scott Sullivan

Leather Wallet Making

We will be using up-cycled leather to make simple wrap around style wallets and bi-fold wallets.

We will use different style and techniques of stitching using artificial sinew or leather lacing.

Marie-Lies Van Asten

Make your own face cream

Come learn to make your own face cream using infused oils, hydrosols, and essential oils. Everyone will take some cream home.

Miranda Coonrod

Naalbinden: what is that?

Naalbinden is a Scandinavian word that means “needle binding” and refers to a type of looping that using a length of string, one needle, and a human thumb to make fabric for hats, mitten, socks, bags, etc. Examples of this type of clothing were found on the “bog people” and halstaadt salt mine mummies of Austria dating to the bronze age but the oldest have been found in a cave in Israel from the Neolithic period. It is also still a technique that is used today in parts of western Africa and Central and South America. Meaning that this is a technique that has traveled the world and through time linking us back to our own fibery past. And it doesn’t unravel or run like knitting or crochet making a truly durable end product. You will learn the basic stitch and how to increase and decrease to make different shapes. All materials provided. this is a beginners class but some hand work experience is helpful, though not necessary.

Laura Roscoe

Pine Needle Baskets

Let’s make a beautiful coiled pine needle basket from the needles of the long leaf pine. Ages 14 and up only.

Justina Prenatt

Raising Confident Girls and Sensitive Boys – Defying Gender Constructs and Cultural Oppression to Raise Fulfilled Children

The generation of children we raise today will be the leaders of tomorrow, and we have an obligation to these children and to the future of Earth and all peoples to guide young people to become their most aware, fully actualized, empowered selves. We will explore what the gender constructs are for girls and boys in our culture and what the impact is of having a limited scope of gender roles forced on children (which will be illuminating on how we have been impacted as adults, as well). We will learn techniques to help children maintain positive self-esteem, develop positive self-images, to experience and healthily express the full range of human emotions, to be fair in peer relationships and to relate well across gender lines, to develop effective problem-solving skills, to learn assertive communication skills, and to honor their own unique interests and life paths. Appropriate for parents, teachers, mentors, health care providers, counselors, and anyone seeking to support children and young adults.

osker brown

Rewild appalachia

You are an attribute of your ecosystem. The only chance for humans to lie without fossil fuels in southern appalachia lies in the restoration of the crucial ecotypes that allow for sustainable subsistence. We will discuss ecological history of the region for the past ~13,000 years of human presence here and the reciprocal effects on ecosystem function. We will then take a quick tour through some ancestral examples of European indigenous cultures. To conclude, we will describe real world strategies for putting the puzzle pieces back together and fully integrating humans into this region.

talcon quinn

Sewing Buckskin Bags (ALL DAY CLASS)

Learn how to sew with brain tanned buckskin!

In this class you will create a small beautiful and functional buckskin bag!

Learn how to lay out patterns appropriately on a skin, how to sew three beautiful, classic and versatile stitches sewn with

buck skin thong and an awl.

Braintanned Buckskin is provided for a materials fee, as well as an awl to use or purchase. You may bring your own supplies, but please talk with

instructor first.

This class is ALL DAY! & open to youth, who are dexterous or accompanied by an adult.

Class fee sliding scale 35-60 bucks.

Lauren Jacobs

Sharpening your observational skills through nature drawing

Drawing is a way of seeing. The most difficult thing about observational drawing is identifying when you’re making an assumption and when you’re making an authentic observation. We’ll discuss the foundations of observational drawing before attendees create their own drawings with instructor oversight.

No art experience of any kind necessary

Spencer Two Dogs

The Appalachian Ninja

Spencer’s book, The Appalachian Ninja, examines the 18 traditional ninjutsu disciplines as expressed through Appalachian culture. A student-interest led class, this is much more than ‘martial arts’- in fact, there is no martial arts training in this class. Instead we will touch on a variety of topics such as folk weather predicting skills, awareness development, escape and evasion, and historical examples that compare the two mountainous cultures. Book not required!

Steve Torma

The Art of Intimacy (NVC) Level 1

Staying centered in any situation, moving beyond stalemates with Nonviolent Communication, forgiving others and yourself, hearing the yes behind every no, being flexible without being submissive, expressing anger or disappointment without judgment or blame, and more. With the former president of Earthaven Ecovillage and co-founder of The REAL Center.

Zac Fittipaldi

The Six Knots Most People Will Ever Need

The six basic knots needed for almost any situation. No age limit.

Luke McLaughlin

The Zen art of Hand Drill

Come and learn the ancient art of making fire with 2 sticks! The hand drill was the preferred fire making method for so many indigenous cultures because of it’s simplicity and ease. Come and learn how to pray to the fire gods.

Patrick Walker

Tomahawk and Knife Throwing

This class is an introduction into Weapon Throwing and the basic physical intelligence employed therein. I’m no champion thrower and really just enjoy facilitating a practice environment that’s safe. To that end, class will be light on structure, heavy on practice, with everyone’s safety paramount over all.

Do you Qualify for a degree in physical physics? Let’s find out, one throw at a time.

*Class fee is an optional donation, $1, per class, but is not required.

Papillon DeBoer

Tools for Healing Sexual Trauma

This workshop is for survivors of sexual trauma, allies, and healers. We will review some facts and statistics, then focus on building skills and tools for healing. These will include breathing, somatic and cognitive skills in order to work with emotional dysregulation, boundaries, and self-criticism and shame. We will not be processing personal wounds or doing healing work on each other. In order to keep the space safe, we will not be discussing personal trauma stories or identifying our reasons for attending. If panic arises at the thought of participating in this workshop, please be gentle with yourself and consider attending another time.

Alan Muskat

What the Fungus That

Join us for an entertaining introduction to the fleshy fun-guys. I’ll also touch on how to teach wild foods and employment opportunities with my organization, No Taste Like Home.

Doug Elliott

Woodslore, Weeds, and Useful Wild Plants Walk

Come on a magical journey with Ranger Doug through the fields and forests to learn about the old-timey ways and connections to the natural world, hear about our regions heritage and crafts, and become familiar with some useful plants and animals. Not to mention, he might have an entertaining song or a story or two to share…

Friday (6/30/2017) – Afternoon

osker brown

Acorn Processing

Acorns served as the predominant staple food for our species for millennia. In this class we will discuss all aspects of harvest, storage, processing, and cooking this abundantly available high quality food.

Graham Wesley

Ancient Stone Medicine: Taoist Traditions & Earth Connection

Discover the origins of stone healing in the Taoist tradition and beyond. Learn about specific stones you can incorporate into your healing as well as practical applications of stone medicine like elixirs and treatments. Learn about how to work with the stones of your place, with the land you call home and sacred spaces, for healing for yourself, your community, and the planet we share.

forest hilyer

bamboo spring snare for rodents

Come learn to make a self contained bamboo snare trap for rodents! In this class we will discuss ethics and concerns of trapping and you will make your own snare trap to take home. Please bring a sharp (non serrate) knife!

Micah Wiles

Barktan Basics

Bark tanning is a traditional method of making grain leather using tannins from tree bark and other plant sources. This class will delve into the basic process of bark tanning and we will discuss sourcing tannin material and tools. We will work hands-on with deer hides at all stages of the process so that attendees will leave the class ready to start tanning at home.

The first 10 to sign up will get to work hands on with hides, others may or may not depending on availability of time and materials.

Tod Kershaw

Blacksmithing Basics

This class is for people who want to get started blacksmithing! This information-rich class will cover topics such as choosing charcoal vs. coal, building your forge, choosing your material (raw steel vs. re-using/recycling old metal), and repairing broken metal tools. Those who signup will get at least 5-10 minutes of hammer-time. Whoever wants to come can come and watch but only the 12 who sign up are guaranteed time with a hammer.

Rachel Shopper

Bowdrill 101

Let’s make fire! In this class, students will assemble and use their own bowdrill friction fire kits. We will cover how to choose and prepare the different “ingredients”, how to maximize efficiency with good form, and basic troubleshooting. Please bring a knife, as there will be some carving involved.

Bari Caton

Card-Weaving for Beginners

Learn the ancient art of card-weaving using a deck of 12 punched cards. You’ll be setting up and weaving a multicolored pattern about 24 inches long plus six inches of fringe on each end. Wear it as a headband, armband or hatband. If you work industriously, you can have it completely finished by the time class ends. I will repeat the same class on Thursday afternoon and Friday afternoon. Older children (ages 10+) welcome, but check with instructor first. Please be on time; we have a lot to do! Please bring a waist-type belt and a blunt metal dinner knife.

Ash Aymond

Clay Cornucopia – An Introduction to Natural Building

Learn about the basic building blocks of natural building with a unique focus on each element – clay, fiber, sand and water – and their role in this timeless building practice. You’ll walk away with a profound understanding and appreciation of these simple materials and take home a cool Clay Crucible of your own design!

Sangoma

Connecting Lifes Dots around the Medicine Wheel

Connecting Life’s Dots round the Medicine Wheel is a Beautiful Journey beginning in the Northeast of remembering our Sacred Agreements with All realms internally and externally and How to Honor those agreements. As we move around the wheel through all directions, we reacquaint participants with the seasons, cycles, elementals and characteristics of each direction. In order to fully know Where we are going, we absolutely must have clarity and resolve about where we have been and why. The journey is accentuated through the healing medicine of songs, chants and prayers for each direction.

Jeffrey Gottlieb

Cordage College

Everything you always wanted to know about natural string, rope and thread. Anyone can come; there are no prerequisites. We will make cordage by hand and using a simple machine, producing two ply and three ply cord. Explore the cordage museum and its many animal and plant fiber and rope samples. Handle specimens of fresh fiber bearing plants and learn to process them to get their fiber. Find out how civilization as we know it would not have been possible without rope! Book by instructor is available for $10 if desired.

Corr de Joch

De-escalation (and some back-up survival tricks if that doesnt always work)

Demonstration, training & practice of very effective method for turning a pre-violent conflict into an opportunity for sincere dialogue & respect. Both nonviolence AND self-defense techniques are integrated into a process that is preferable to the sum of its parts, showing that the two schools of thought need not be held mutually exclusive. And in case de-escalation does not work every time, we will practice some easy-to-learn, violence-ending self-defense tricks that are highly effective without mastery of a martial artform.

Wolf Bravo

Demystifying Sharpening

Learn the delicate and critical art of knife and tool sharpening. This class will focus on, developing good techniques for different edge tools, as well as, where to find quality materials and tools for bargain prices.

Types of stones: oil, water, wet, natural, and man-made.

Other media available: sand paper, butcher steel, ceramics, diamond impregnated plates.

Design follows function:

Blades: design, uses, alloys, hardness and angles.

The three stages of blade’s edge: dull edge, damage edge, and restoration of functionality.

Evaluating the task: initial observation, materials needed, and safety tips, plus deciding to keep current function or create a new design.

Techniques for each stage of sharpening: honing, sharpening, and restoring the bevels and micro bevels.

Fuz Sanderson

Didgeridoo Making and Playing

Fuz Sanderson will teach you how to make and decorate your own bamboo didgeridoo. We’ll touch on the cultural history of Australian original peoples and other uses of bamboo. The class will finish with playing techniques and circular breathing.

There is a materials fee of $ 10-$20, pay what you can afford.

Class limit 14

Age 13 and above.

Abby Artemisia

DIY Herbal Tinctures

Learn how to make your own herbal extracts. Tinctures are herbs extracted with alcohol, glycerine, or vinegar. They are super convenient as they’re portable and more concentrated than tea. Tinctures are an easy method of extending the shelf life of herbs. They can also be a great way to get kids to take herbs.

We’ll discuss and demonstrate the different methods for making tinctures, local herbs that work well as tinctures, along with how to harvest and process them. You’ll get to take home instructions, recipes, and a tincture that you make during the class.

Steven Townsend

Drum circle 101

Drum circles were formed to help bring the community together. Participation promotes group unity, and teaches people how to take turns in leading and following. There are many physical and emotional benefits linked to drum circles. Come and learn to drum together. there will be spare drums to use.

Papillon DeBoer

Ecstatic Fire Circle Culture

Dancing, drumming, singing, fire. Human cultures around the world have celebrated community and spirit in this way for many thousands of years. Over the last several decades, pagan fire circles on this continent have begun to develop their own cultures. Come hear and share stories on some of these models, including the basics processes they share, and collaborate as Firefly develops its unique fire circle culture. Bring some drums and percussion and we’ll do more than talk. Papillon has been rocking pagan fire circles since 1997.

john kraus

Edge Tools Sharpening and Care: Chisels and Gouges

Use and sharpening of edge tools. This session will focus on Chisels and Gouges, but we can sharpen and go over maintenance for whatever edge tools you bring. Participants are encouraged to bring your own tools.

Baram Kim

Elements of Life: Radiant Life Intro

Join Baram & Abhayam for introduction to self-healing and revitalizing lifestyle. Baram has healed himself from several debilitating conditions, including painful digestive issues and autoimmune diseases. Overcoming big challenges allowed him to develop his own unique lifestyle that integrates nature, nutrition, movement, and mind. This is the foundation of Radiant Life.

robin allison

Field Botany 101

Learn how to confidently identify edible, medicinal, and all the rest of the plants with Wandering-Botanist-On-Call, Robin Allison!

James Clinkscales

Flintknapping

In this class you will learn the basic methods of flintknapping so you can make an arrowhead or spear point. This includes percussion and pressure flaking techniques using stone, wood and antler tools. Copper Ishi’s will be used for pressure flaking.

Glenn Ingram

Furniture from a Log – Part 2: Mortise and Tenon Joints

Learn how to layout and cut round mortise and tenon joints to make stools, chairs, benches, tables, and many other possible projects.

Elise Damilatis

Herbalism 101

Come learn the basics of herbal medicine – philosophy, plant identification, medicine making, and some first aid.

Josh Fox

Herbs for the Emotional Body

Come learn how emotion, trauma, blood, and the moon cycle all relate. Integrating wisdom from Chinese and Western traditions, Fox will elucidate herbal strategies for balancing the emotional body while providing real-life examples and samples of relevant superstar herbs.

Ian Snider

Horses in the Forest

We will go over the basic care and partnership between woodsmen and horse then safely harvest timber with horse power. Receive instruction from a seasoned woodsman and his family who make their living from the Appalachian Forest.

Steve Torma

Introduction to Sacred Sexuality

After our survival instinct, sexual energy is the most powerful force in the human experience. How do we access and guide this energy? With the heart. And what guides our heart? The overall spiritual purpose of our lives. When all three are combined: sex, heart, and spirit, we can live a deeply satisfying life of service to our ultimate vision. Ideas and practices for improving your physical and emotionally-intimate relationships. With the former President of Earthaven Ecovillage and co-founder of The REAL Center.

Charly Aurelia

Knives : Use And Defense In Self Protection

Many of us carry knives, and for many different reasons.

This is a hands on class that will increase your chance of survival when things get direct and go beyond what awareness and de-escalation can handle.

Learn no-nonsense, practical, functional, and proven skills for surviving violence with edged weapons.

* See what Charly is doing and is offering at www.facebook.com/wncmountainforge

Scott Sullivan

Leather Wallet Making

We will be using up-cycled leather to make simple wrap around style wallets and bi-fold wallets.

We will use different style and techniques of stitching using artificial sinew or leather lacing.

Grant Adkisson

Mead Making 101 (Adults 21+ ONLY)

Magical Mead Making – Fundamentals of Brewing and Cultural Inoculation

Learn to make the rarest of vintages, honeywine using fruit, medicinal herbs, spices, and more. Whether medicinal or purely recreational, we will discuss the history of mead and the various cultures and cultural customs surrounding this magical brew. Experience a mini Mead Circle and savor the taste of a cold winter day in summer, or the nectar of another time and place in each unique brew. Up to 20 participants can join and watch the demonstration. There will be enough materials on hand for up to 10 people to brew their own small batch to take home with a materials fee of 20-25$ to cover the cost of the raw, (non-alcoholic) materials, and starter brewing setup. Gain your own brewing independence and enjoy your own rarest of vintages at a fraction of the price of store bought meads.

Suggested Donation: 5-25

***(THIS CLASS IS FOR ADULTS 21 AND OVER ONLY)*** ***(THIS CLASS IS FOR ADULTS 21 AND OVER ONLY)*** ***(THIS CLASS IS FOR ADULTS 21 AND OVER ONLY)***

Shawn Kelly

Metal matches

Nicholas Parker

Mushroom cultivation intensive

Using different matterials such as sawdust, cardboard, wood chips, coffee grounds, etc. To grow mushrooms.

Which trees are best for which species and the differences in diameter of wood used and in what way

Cultivating on pastuerize medium.

Basic life cycle and introduction to mushroom wants and needs.

Mateo Ryall

mushroom walk

we will explore the land in search of any mushrooms, while discussing how to identify mushrooms safely and respectfully harvest for food, fiber, tinder and medicine.

Chelsea Morning

Netted Water Bottle Holder

Learn basic Macrame’ and create a netted water bottle holder.

Kai Eagle

Next-Level Tree Climbing

Learn to climb trunks without branches, move from tree to tree and safely navigate the canopy. First witness and then embody. Come prepared to climb.

Alexandra Tait

Owning the Healthy Predator Within

Discussion plus Specialized Archery Shoot on provided recurve training bows.

What is a “Healthy Predator?” Our dysfunctional culture of acquiring food and hunting is mostly out of alignment with Natural Law. Learn to become a “healthy predator,” become embodied and how we fit into the web of life. Even human vegans are the apex predator on this planet. Cultivate this with experiential exercises as we shoot at straw bales with our powerful imagination. Basic archery experience is recommended.

$5 Arrow Fee covers wear and tear for use of archery equipment.

frank salzano

Permaculture & Natural Building Tour of Wild Abundance

Let’s go adventuring and see the homestead & school of Natalie Bogwalker and family. This tour will be led by her partner Frank Salzano, who brings the sophistication & genius to wild abundance 😉

We will meet at main circle & arrange carpools 10 minutes before afternoon class time starts.

We will review the edible & useful plant species, talk water and earth-scaping, see permaculture principles in action, look at neighborhood design, & view the various natural building projects (including: log cabin construction, slip-straw techniques, waddle-and-daub, decedent use of native Appalachian woods, explore outdoor and seasonal structures, a non-traditional pagoda, and all the other natural building madness that is our homeplace).

Laura Roscoe

Pine Needle Baskets

Let’s make a beautiful coiled basket using the needles from the longleaf pine. Adults only- ages 14 and up.

Sabrina Squires

Rabbit Butchering

Beginning with a live rabbit, we will go through the steps of dispatch, skinning, gutting and quartering. Afterwards, we’ll cook the rabbit and enjoy.

liz thecowgirl

Rotational Grazing and Portable Fencing for the Homestead

This class will explore many aspects of rotational grazing, including an opportunity to interact with portable electric fencing and move the Cows and Chickens to their next paddock. The focus of this class may shift based on the specific interests of participants. This class has information applicable to a variety of species. We have experience fencing in Cows, Sheep, Poultry, Pigs, and Livestock Guardian Dogs.

talcon quinn

Sewing Buckskin Bags (ALL DAY CLASS)

Learn how to sew with brain tanned buckskin!

In this class you will create a small beautiful and functional buckskin bag!

Learn how to lay out patterns appropriately on a skin, how to sew three beautiful, classic and versatile stitches sewn with

buck skin thong and an awl.

Braintanned Buckskin is provided for a materials fee, as well as an awl to use or purchase. You may bring your own supplies, but please talk with

instructor first.

This class is ALL DAY! & open to youth, who are dexterous or accompanied by an adult.

Class fee sliding scale 35-60 bucks.

Nancy Basket

Small Random/Free-Form Kudzu Bird Nests

Learn the art of splitting kudzu and weaving it to hold jelly beans, (not birds)!

Scotty Karas

The Art of Growing Fruit

This is a class for organic home and community scale orchardists and those wishing to create or maintain edible forest gardens. If you want to learn about growing a fruit and nut orchard in your backyard or in your community this class is for you. We will cover everything from site planning, species selection, spacing, planting, holistic soil management, mulching, amending, fertilizing, pruning, disease management and more.

Zac Fittipaldi

Women Wood Splitting with Sophia Rog

A class on splitting firewood especially for female empowerment!

No age limit.

Bill Parravano

Working out the Kinks: Hips & Lower Back

Working out the kinks: Hips/Lower Back

Do you have sore, stiff, tight, achy, painful hips or lower back? Then this class is for you! Learn the secrets of your body’s nervous system. You will walk away from this class with the working knowledge of how to eliminate tension in your hips and lower back no matter what age or what you do.

Participants of the class will receive a copy of my book, Knees For Life that contain the ongoing practice of the concepts and principles learned during the class to take home with them.

For your own comfort bring any pillows, blankets, or yoga mats to make lying on the ground more comfortable for you.

Friday (6/30/2017) – Evening

Jack Lion

A Council of All Beings: 3 hour ritual

The Council of All Beings is a community ritual that explores our connection/disconnection to ourselves, each other (inclusive of ancestors and future brother/sister beings) and the natural world. The Council includes multiple roles for participants to explore such as personifying and embodying elements of the natural world and allowing themselves to be spoken “through” addressing the circle of gathered humans as that entity’s emissary. The structure is simple and is designed to help us experience the beauty and power of our interconnectedness with all life. Costumes are welcome, but you may not be the one who wears what you bring, so please be willing to share and keep an open mind about what role(s) you may end up working with, such is the nature of ritual! [I carry this ritual as a student of Joanna Macy. Joanna Macy and John Seed are the “founders” of this community ritual.]

We will open the circle for this ritual 30 minutes after dinner is over (7:30). Those who choose/feel called to take emissary roles should plan to stay for the duration of the ritual (about three hours) in order to maintain the integrity of the container until the circle is closed.

Yona FrenchHawk

Cherokee Sweat Lodge

Yona is a full-blooded member of The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Born and raised on the Qualla Boundary in Cherokee NC Yona has a deep connection to Turtle Island/Mother Earth. He will share the Cherokee Prophesy of Feminine and Masculine and how they live in balance to honor all life and living things. Through ceremony, song, and honoring, Yona has been tasked by his Tsalagi elders to continue to weave the web of life by sharing the Tsalagi way and helping to connect all the colors of the rainbow.

Drinks lots of fluids. Men will be wearing shorts and women we ask to wear a skirt or wrap and a loose fitting top that covers the shoulders. Also bring a towel.

Age Limit 18 and Older ONLY

liz thecowgirl

Evening Cow Milking

We will gather from 7:30-8:30 to discuss the basics of cow handling, and each participant will have the opportunity to milk Honey, our beloved Guernsey cow.

Bring a jar or vessel for a taste!

Children should be accompanied by an adult.

Please wear closed toed shoes.

All are welcome to come watch and chat. Only those signed up will be able to try their hands at milking.

Phil Ferguson

Swordplay Arena

The Wandering Swordsmen will run the Swordplay Arena each evening from 8-10pm during the last light of the day Wednesday-Sunday. We will run field battles from 8-9pm, including games like capture the flag, javelin dodgeball, and archery tag! From 9-10pm we will light up the 20′ wide arena tent for tournament style games including 1v1 and 2v2 tournaments with single sword, sword and shield, dual sword, and other weapon styles.

All our boffer gear is made for full contact combat and tested monthly for compliance with the regulations provided by The Belegarth Medieval Combat Society, a national boffer league with very strict standards for safety and game play. All our swords, shields, spears, javelins, bows, arrows, and other gear are designed to safely engage in the highly physical and athletic sport of boffing, or padded weapon combat. All players must have a waiver on file to play, and minors must have their waiver filled out by a legal guardian. The waiver is available to fill out online at the following link, and we will have paper copies on site as well.

https://www.smartwaiver.com/v/wanderingswordsmen/

We will also have gear for sale and information about our summer camps and classes for all ages of people who are interested in this growing sport! Come check out our donation based weekly battles every Sunday at Carrier Park in West Asheville from 1-3pm for kids and 3-6pm for adults! See our website at www.thewanderingswordsmen.com for more information.

Patrick Walker

Tomahawk and Knife Throwing

This class is an introduction into Weapon Throwing and the basic physical intelligence employed therein. I’m no champion thrower and really just enjoy facilitating a practice environment that’s safe. To that end, class will be light on structure, heavy on practice, with everyone’s safety paramount over all.

Do you Qualify for a degree in physical physics? Let’s find out, one throw at a time.

This class will start at 4

*Class fee is an optional donation, $1, per class, but is not required.

Saturday (7/1/2017) – Early Morning (before breakfast)

Tara Rawson

Acrobatic Partner Yoga

Start your day with movement, playfulness and lots of laughter! Meet and connect with your fellow friends at Firefly each morning. We’ll practice trust exercises, acrobatic partner play to strengthen and lengthen and we’ll always finish with thai massage techniques. You will go through your day feeling strong, energized and relaxed. Beginners are welcome and no partner is needed. Bring a mat, blanket, towel or skin.

Baram Kim

Elements of Life: Movement

Elements of Life: Movement, Start time 7:00, Join Baram & Abhayam for movement. Learn to build strength and increase energy with simple, yet powerful movement. This blend of martial art and simple exercise will help you understand your own body and mind.

liz thecowgirl

Morning Milking

We will gather from 8:30-9:30 to discuss the basics of cow handling, and each participant will have the opportunity to hand milk one of our Jersey or Guernsey cows.

Bring a jar or vessel for a taste!

Children should be accompanied by an adult.

Please wear closed toed shoes.

All are welcome to come hang out and chat about cows. Only those who’ve signed up will be able to milk.

Saturday (7/1/2017) – Morning

Sara Callaway

Introduction to 8 Shields

This class is an introduction to the 8 shields. The 8 shields help one understand how things fit together in the world, and how they flow. Well explore the energies of the 8 directions, how they are reflected in the natural cycles of a day, a year, plant life, and human life, and how we can tap into those energies to better understand and design for life experiences. Come see how an 8 shields approach can help you.

justin sutera

Awareness Games for Adults

Come engage your senses and explore your intuition through some playful awareness games!

Zac Fittipaldi

Axes, Mauls, Hatchets, and Cross-Cut Saws – What is the difference? And, how to use them!

These tools aren’t all the same, but they sure are all useful for working with wood. Learn when and why to use these various tools for splitting and cutting wood. You’ll have a chance to get a feel for using these different kinds of tools.

No age limit!

forest hilyer

bamboo fire saw

Come learn to create fire with a dead grass (bamboo)! In this class you will make your own bamboo fire saw kit and learn technique for creating fire with it! This is an extremely useful and neat skill to add to your treasure trove! Please bring a sharp (non serrate) knife.

Rebekah Luhrs

Beginner AcroYoga

In a culture where we have lost a deep level of physical connection, AcroYoga offers a space where people can connect with one another, build trust, and develop deep and meaningful relationships. Rooted in the mindfulness of yoga, AcroYoga is a practice that is available for every body, age, and ability. It is a dynamic partner practice that blends the wisdom of yoga, the dynamic power of acrobatics, and the loving kindness of healing arts. In this session, we will dive into the foundations of the AcroYoga practice. We will start with a brief overview of the philosophy behind the practice, and then move into a warm up and foundational postures and therapeutic inversions. Through this session, we will work closely with spotters, providing a safe and supported environment for newcomers to immerse themselves in practice. In this particular part of the practice, we learn how to build trust in partnerships, how to communicate, let go, and play.

talcon quinn

Buckskin Bikini Tops (ALL DAY)

Make yourself a custom tailored buckskin bikini top! You will learn how to make a pattern and some fundamentals for sewing with buckskin.

Leather and tools are provided with the material fee. Students who have their own brain tanned buckskin are welcome to use their own and participate if they talk to the instructor prior.

Fee:Sliding scale 50-100 bucks. This is an all day class.

Ian Snider

Chainsaw 101

We will go over the basic use and care of a chainsaw, learn to safely fell a tree, and break it down into useable material. Receive instruction from a seasoned woodsman and his family who make their living from the Appalachian Forest.

Christina Gordon

Dairy Goats 101 and Cheese Tasting

We will discuss aspects of raising dairy goats for the beginner or experienced goat keeper. This class will cover getting your goat, nutritional needs, housing, feeding and fodder options, basic health care, bucks, kids, breeding and a discussion on homestead cheese making, methods, cultures and types of cheeses. We will have a variety of cheeses to review and taste during class as well as NCDA Registered Raw Goat Milk for pets to taste or purchase.

Josh Fox

Deep Connection Games

Even when we’re surrounded by hundreds of people, we can still feel isolated and socially disconnected.

Let’s go deep and create real human connection, playing fun games and exercises to open our hearts, find our edges, and learn how to create the aliveness that we all crave and delight in.

Gary Tuerack

Double Your Wild Skills in Less Time!

Double Your Wild Skills in Less Time!

Ever wish you could read faster and remember better to get through all of your Wildfood/Homesteading/Survival/etc. books? In this session you will learn to double your reading speed with full comprehension from renowned expert Gary Tuerack.

  • Increase Your Reading Speed Significantly with Full Comprehension
  • Improve Long Term Retention
  • Save Hours of Aggravation Trying to Understand Your Reading
  • Prevent Mind Wandering
  • Discover the Foods That Affect Your Concentration
  • Much more…

Gary is an internationally sought after author and speaker on faster reading with increased comprehension and memory improvement. He has presented this info at Harvard, Cornell University (audience of 1,500), and hundreds of others. He is the winner of the “Best Lecturer of the Year” award from the prestigious collegiate association APCA. High energy, interactive, fun, and prizes! One session you don’t want to miss.

john kraus

Edge Tools Sharpening and Care – Drills, Augers, & Planes

Use and sharpening of edge tools. This session will focus on Drills, Augers, and Planes. But we can sharpen and go over maintenance for whatever edge tools you bring. Participants are encouraged to bring your own tools and sharpening equipment.

Sabrina Squires

Egg-Tanning Rabbit Hides

Using eggs, smoke and a little bit of elbow grease, students will flesh, tan and soften their own rabbit hides. This process can take a few hours or a day or two, depending on the amount of time the student has to devote to their hide. All tools, eggs, sewing material and two rabbit hides each will be provided to students.

Baram Kim

Elements of Life: Five Elements

Join Abhayam and Baram to learn all Five Life Elements.elemental living is the integration of essential life elements into our internal biological environment to improve and sustain optimal health and well being. The body is a play of five elements – water, earth, air, fire and space *(movement) for your life journey. a self-healing and revitalizing lifestyle.

Paeonia Sherrow

Felting

Full day felting class. Folks will need to be present for both morning and afternoon sessions. Students will start from raw wool, create their own patterns and felt a small pouch, wallet, purse or mason jar coozie. This class is great for the complete beginner and for those with experience who want to try something new or freshen their skill. As an instructor, my intention is to offer you this craft in such a way that you can recreate and grow with it at home on your own. All materials will be provided for a materials fee of $20. In general, this class is open for age 12 & up, younger folks can feel free to talk with me if they want to join.

Grant Adkisson

Flint and Steel Strikers

Before the Zippo, Before matches, before the bic lighter there was flint and steel. Classic blacksmithing project that has practical applications. Learn some of the basic blacksmithing techniques of drawing, tapering, bending and heat treating to transform tool steel into a functional and artistic tool used to make fire. Start with good fire management and ergonomic techniques to get familiar with forging. No experience necessary. Small Class size to ensure success and quality experience. Students will also make char cloth and go home with a fire kit of their own making.

Abby Artemisia

Forage Your First Aid Kit

Our best medicine surrounds us; we are adapted to the same habitat. This being one of the most diverse areas in the world, why wouldn’t we harvest our own herbs from our backyards, field and forest? We’ll focus on 10 of the most common wild herbs and talk about how to make them into formulas like teas, tinctures, and salves for ailments you might encounter at home or on adventures in the woods and beyond. We’ll take a short walk to see some of these herbs in their natural habitat. Leave with a handout of common, local first aid plants beyond what we’ll have time to cover in class.

Cathy Holt

Heartfelt Communication for Families

Want to practice compassionate communication skills with your children? Naming our feelings and needs, and empathically guessing those of others, helps to lower everyone’s stress levels and strengthen connection. Solutions to conflicts often emerge. In this class for parents and children ages 7 and up, family members will create together a set of Feelings and Needs cards which we’ll use to play a game. At home, use the cards to express feelings and help resolve conflicts. You’ll also learn a simple breathing technique to create calm. Adults without kids welcome too.

Jamie Sparks

Herbs, Stones and Supports for Healing Grief and a Broken Heart

A sweet exploration of the stones and herbs that can support our spirits through grief, as well as meditations to come more fully into your body and learn where your grief may live, say hello and offer it hugs and loves. We will share exercises to support ourselves and others during times of grief or trauma. Don’t be fooled by the titlethese herbs and stones and connections can lift, lighten and connect our hearts and spirits during any time in life.

Luke McLaughlin

Human Superpowers: An evolutionary look at Survival :

What are humans “superpowers”? Come explore “survival” with an evolutionary biology lens. How can we use our understanding of our ancestral history to live in proper alignment with our DNA? What are the most important skills to have to keep us alive and well in all environmental situations? Other topics include: psycho somatic shifting, endurance running, barefoot running, and survival skills.

Daniel Foor

Intro to West African Ifa/Orisha tradition

Ifa/Orisha tradition is the most widely practiced traditional African path on Earth. The tradition includes elements such as: rituals for relating with the forces of nature (orisha), rites of passage, practices for conscious offering of food animals, extensive traditions of herbal medicine, processes for community conflict resolution and accountability, etc. In this interactive teaching I’ll share some from four pilgrimages to Nigeria to train with Yoruba elders. Our emphasis will be on ways this lineage of indigenous African teaching can apply to everyday life and earth skills in Western NC. We’ll touch on implications for conscious killing of food plants and animals, the role of traditional African wisdom in healing contemporary American racism, and the deep etiquette required to approach traditional systems with humility, heart, and integrity. All are welcome, the vibe will be relaxed and conversational with some light, inclusive ritual.

Steven Townsend

Intro to west African rhythms

learn the secret to becoming a good drummer as told by Mamady Kieta, we will go over some traditional rhythms, where they originated, why they are played, djembe/dun accompaniment parts, along with calls, breaks and solo phrasing.

Jessica Kaufman

Knitted Cordage

You’ve taken cordage classes, you’ve (possibly?) taken knitting classes… did you know you can make knitted cordage?! It’s a series of consecutive and connected loops coming up through loops, easy to learn and understand, and TUBULAR (like, really, man). It’s constructed in a tube, so you could insert something inside of it… or not. Use it as straps on a wool project, decoration for your body, or in any other way you’d use cordage. Instructor will bring a variety of yarn scraps and needles to borrow during class (it goes quickly so you’ll probably finish before lunch!). Bring double-pointed needles or a circular needle if you want to take yours along with you.

Scott Sullivan

Leather Wallet Making

We will be using up-cycled leather to make simple wrap around style wallets and bi-fold wallets.

We will use different style and techniques of stitching using artificial sinew or leather lacing.

Jason Drevenak

Making buffalo leather shoulder bags

Making buffalo leather shoulder bags

If the shoulder bag you carry just isn’t big enough come and learn to design, lay out,and create a medium, large or Xtra large buffalo leather shoulder bag to put all your cool primitive stuff in. All materials (including leather, buckskin for lacing and tools) provided. Come by Drev’s camp to see what a finished bag looks like.

Materials fee is:

$20 for a medium bag,

$30 for a large bag,

and $40 for an Xl bag

Shawn Kelly

Making fire with flint and steel

Kai Eagle

Next-Level Tree Climbing

Learn to climb trunks without branches, move from tree to tree and safely navigate the canopy. First witness and then embody. Come prepared to climb.

Andrew Goodheart

Organic Home Orchards

Growing fruit organically in western NC, as well as the southeast in general, is challenging. We will cover just about everything you need to know, in order to be successful.

Sean and Nesta Kennedy

personal protection for everyone

This is a fun interactive class that will give anyone basic movement and self protection skills for life.

Laura Roscoe

Pine Needle Baskets

Let’s make a beautiful coiled pine needle basket from the needles of the long leaf pine. Ages 14 and up only.

Rachel Shopper

Poetry and Sensory Awareness: Cutting a Ripe Watermelon with a Sharp Knife

In this class students will be lead through a variety of experiences to awaken their senses and sharpen their awareness. We will explore meditations, natural movement, haiku, and other writing exercises to cultivate presence and awaken to our interconnection with the natural world.

Adriana Jerez

Positive Reinforcement Training For Animal Husbandry

What do cows, chickens, and dogs all have in common? They can all learn using positive reinforcement!

We will be using principles of learning theory to teach new behaviors to our student animals. Class participants will have time to experiment with learning principles on multiple species including cows, chickens, and dogs.

We will learn:

different ways to teach new behaviors

ways to modify and/or eliminate existing (bad) behaviors

how to make veterinary care easy and stress-free

methods for handling a fearful animal

how training can improve our relationship with the animals under our care

Participants will leave this class with a strong foundation for beginning to apply these skills with their own animals at home.

Jeffrey Gottlieb

Southeastern Style Moccasins (Part 1)

Learn to make a pattern for your foot, choose hides, cut and sew the best fitting, most comfortable footwear you have ever had on your feet. These are the beautiful center seam moccasins made by several Southeastern tribes. Must attend both morning and afternoon sessions. Fee waived if you bring your own buckskin.

Barron Brown

Spoon Carving

Learn how to carve your very own spoon with Barron Brown using just hand tools the old fashioned way. No Firefly Gathering is complete without making a spoon of your very own! bring a sharp knife!

Age limit 10 and older unless parents are present.

patrick Ironwood

Spring tapping and back country water systems.

Spring tapping and backcountry water systems.

The basics of finding clear water springs and ideas on tapping them to create a safe water source.

Around us there is always water, the hills and mountains are full of water.

It lies low in coves and high in mountain canyons. let us explore and discover its seeps and secret streams, if the ecology is healthy we find drinking water.

This workshop will cover:

spring finding and how to determine water safety.

the Ecological ramifications and responsibilities of tapping springs.

plumbing 101- tools and materials

small scale water systems, running pipes, building a settling tank and small reservoir.

Corr de Joch

sticktag & poorkids sticktag (no taggin sticks)

Awaken your body’s instinctual dueling abilities learning what many players consider the best simple sport ever.

Sticktag & Poorkids’ Sticktag (no tagging sticks) is a very low impact (finesse-tagging/scoring system), cooperative competition sparring sport with NO gender/weight/age divisions. We’ll see how different bodytypes mean different advantages, as little kids often defeat adults trying their best, and female-bodied players tend to slightly outscore male-bodied players, partly due to it’s not being an upper body strength contest. This game builds physical confidence, instinct awareness, cardio endurance, balance, and lower body strength, maintaining an honorable atmosphere as we exchange mutual guidance and keep each others’ scores.

9ish-60ish (if spry) It’s an “adult” class that doesnt mind if some coordinated, non-delicate kids participate!

frank salzano

Stop Throwing Away Your Qi: The #1 Best Thing To Improve Your Sex Life (Besides Opening Your Heart Chakra)

This class will be a practical introduction to ejaculation control and multiple male orgasm. We will cover some theory and practices… and talk about how to integrate these very simple, time-tested, evidence-based, clinically-proven, US Department of Health & Human Services rubber-stamped, and generally approved techniques into your bedroom and into the next phases of your ecstatic bliss-filled sex-life. All genders welcome.

Steve Torma

The Art of Intimacy (NVC) Level 1

Staying centered in any situation, moving beyond stalemates with Nonviolent Communication, forgiving others and yourself, hearing the yes behind every no, being flexible without being submissive, expressing anger or disappointment without judgment or blame, and more. With the former president of Earthaven Ecovillage and co-founder of The REAL Center.

Alinahh Ever

Tuning & Toning our Voices

We will work with ancient Essene and Vedic practices that connect us deeply with our hearts and use our voices to tune in to ourselves and all creation. Toning and tuning our voices, we will move into using sacred sounds to soothe the soul and raise our vibration. We will end with beautiful songs in several languages that are intended to heal humans and send our love to Mama Earth. No singing experience or ability necessary. These are practices to honor your self and become a full member of the singing species that we are.

With Alinahh Ever and Zeke Kotikovsky

Scotty Karas

Utilizing the Medicine Wheel

In this class we will learn to work with Nature and harness the power of natural cycles to enhance what we do in our daily lives. The medicine wheel, and the energies of the 8 directions will be embodied and understood through life cycles in nature, song, story, elements, animals and more. Through experiencing the cyclical patterns of nature, we will learn how to embrace them in our day to day lives, enhancing what we do by working with Nature. Whether its planning our day, a date, a vacation, a meeting, a speech, or an entire program, aligning with natural cycles of learning and growth brings flow, ease, and natural connection.

Fermenti. foods

Vegetable Fermantation

Basic and Advanced Principles of both Self Brining and Brined Vegetable Fermentation. General discussion with a Make and Take component with a Q&A to follow. Additional technical support is provided as well.

$15 materials fee covers the “Make and Take” materials, enough for 30 people.

Laura Coleman

Waldorf Education: Learning with Hands, Heart, and Head

In this class I will share my journey and passion as a Waldorf teacher over the past 13 years. I will offer an overview of Waldorf curriculum as it meets the developing child through 3 fundamental stages of growth: Ages 0-7 Hands, Ages 7-14 Heart, and Ages 14-21 Head.

We will also have fun with some activities, including circle games designed for developing children, storytelling, and a craft.

Charly Aurelia

When There is No 911 : Patient Assessment

Most of us are raised to expect emergency services to arrive in 8 minutes or less after calling for help.

Cell phone and satellite based emergency notification devices are now making it possible to summon help (and even specifically what type of help you may need) almost anywhere.

But help may still be hours away, perhaps days.

Learn the foundational skill of emergency medicine: assessment.

Assessment is hands on, using all of your senses, but it is also a way of thinking. This way of thinking allows you to integrate your findings into a functional, effective plan of action.

Come use your mind.

*See what Charly is doing and is offering at www.facebook.com/wncmountainforge

Ryan Milt

Wild Food Harvest

Learn to identify and efficiently harvest some tasty and nutrient dense wild foods. Sustainable harvesting and methods to ensure the maintained integrity of your wild foods will also be discussed.

Luke Learningdeer

Wondrous Plants and Fungi !

Come meet, greet and go deeper with the plants and fungi that surround our gathering. We’ll discuss ID, Edible, Medicinal and Utilitarian uses, ecology, lore, magic and more!

Doug Elliott

Woodslore, Weeds, and Useful Wild Plants Walk copy

Come on a magical journey with Ranger Doug through the fields and forests to learn about the old-timey ways and connections to the natural world, hear about our regions heritage and crafts, and become familiar with some useful plants and animals. Not to mention, he might have an entertaining song or a story or two to share…

Fuz Sanderson

Zen and the Art of Wood Splitting

Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, Chop wood carry water.

We’ll focus on the physics and mechanics of splitting, as well as the qualities of different wood types, heating value, cooking and other tips and tricks. Limit 14 people, age 13 and above. Wear closed toe shoes and be ready to get physical and have fun.

Saturday (7/1/2017) – Afternoon

Steven Townsend

Creating the Voice of the village

During this time I would like to set the intent of being the sound track for firefly, Unlike a open drum circle this will be a facilitated circle this will be a improvisational journey, all skill levels welcome, i want us all to explore the rhythm physically, mentally, and spiritually . lets sing dance and drum life into our village!

Reishi Strauss

Appalachian Medicinal Plant and Tree Walk

Learn how to identify medicinal plants, trees, mushrooms, and flowers of Appalachia, as well as the basics of Herbalism such as sustainable wildcrafting, plant processing techniques, and medicinal preparations. This walk is family friendly, open to children & teens

Marc Williams

Appalachian Woody Ethnobotany

Spend a class learning about trees and shrubs. We will go for a plant walk to learn how to identify a woody plant by the leaves, bark and other characteristics. Common and obscure uses for woody plants of the Appalachian flora that may support overall health, well-being and sustenance will also be discussed.

Walter Tipton

Approachable Spoon Carving: Cherry Flavored

Please bring a sharp knife. Raw cherry wood splits will be provided. As a bonus: catch a quick demonstration and learn how to make your own hook-knife.

Becky Beyer

Bioregional Nutrition: Place Based Human Diet

Learn about the foods and nourishment that surround us in Southern Appalachia and how eating locally helps to support our planet, our bodies and our minds. A combination of understanding basic human nutrition, foraging, sustainable agriculture, and how it all works together to create lasting health and food security. Body positive, does mention and discuss humane butchering, hunting, and other meat-based diets. We will end with a sample and short over-fire cooking of some foraged food and have a little tasting. Feel free to bring your own home grown, homemade, foraged or otherwise local foods to share and sample!

justin sutera

Black Ash Splint Basketry

Learn about Ash splint basketry using the Black Ash tree. We will pound the log to remove splints and use those for each student to make a small ash basket. Students will learn the entire process from tree identification and selection through splint preparation and ultimately basket weaving. It is likely that students will not finish their baskets during the class time, and should expect to put in some work on their own out of class to complete this craft.

Tod Kershaw

Blacksmithing with Tod Kershaw and Barron Brown

This class is for people who want to get started blacksmithing! This information-rich class will cover topics such as choosing charcoal vs. coal, building your forge, choosing your material (raw steel vs. re-using/recycling old metal), and repairing broken metal tools. Those who signup will get at least 5-10 minutes of hammer-time. Whoever wants to come can come and watch but only those who sign up are guaranteed time with a hammer.

talcon quinn

Buckskin Bikini Tops (ALL DAY)

Continuation of morning class.

Ash Aymond

Clay Cornucopia – An Introduction to Natural Building

Learn about the basic building blocks of natural building with a unique focus on each element – clay, fiber, sand and water – and their role in this timeless building practice. You’ll walk away with a profound understanding and appreciation of these simple materials and take home a cool Clay Crucible of your own design!

MELISSA CLARK

Community Rights

We the People are more powerful than we dare to believe. For almost two centuries now, since large corporations started to win Constitutional so-called “rights” in 1819, We the People have been slowly forgetting who We are. And forgetting that the American revolutionaries who founded our nation designed corporations as a subordinate legal fiction, chartered to serve a specific public need and to cause no harm. How far we have strayed from that reality! But it doesn’t have to be that way.

If we relearn our history, if we understand again that corporations were designed to serve us, not to rule us, in this “democratic republic”, then we can reclaim our sovereignty. Once we understand this, the sky’s the limit. We can rein in corporate constitutional “rights” as have more than 200 communities in nine states. We can get back to governing ourselves, collectively determining what a majority of us wants, in this nation founded on the principle of majority rule.

What would this look like at the municipal or county level? What do the majority of local residents want regarding water and air quality, land use, cell phone towers, food safety, big box and chain stores, forest health, etc? And is your local government prepared to stand tall with that majority when push comes to shove?

Since 1999, 200 communities in nine states have passed legally groundbreaking locally-enforceable Community Rights laws which . . . have banned fracking and oil drilling, water withdrawal for bottling, toxic sludge dumping on farmland, corporate-managed infrastructure, unsustainable energy development, and more. 95% of these laws have never been challenged in court.

Chloe Buzzotta

Creating a Resilient Future

Creating a Resilient Future (I will teach twice): We live in unsettling times. How do we seek security in this climate of environmental, social, and political disarray? This class is meant to take all of the tools and courses taught at Firefly and integrate it into our collective future. Places like ecovillages, transition towns, and permaculture communities actively use these earth skills as a means of survival currently. During the class we will cover these forms of living that already exist and how you can get involved with this movement.

Luna Dietrich

Ecosex Magic Ritual with Lover Earth

Sexuality it not just limited to act we do, but can be an energy we allow. It is our creative life force and when we suppress and shame our sexuality, we suppress our connection to our divinity, magic, and power. However, when we radically embody this energy, we often find that our deepest authentic desires are expressions that enrich life.

Through ritual, creative expression, and intention, we will focus our sexual energy to intimately connect to our deepest and biggest resource, Lover Earth. From this place of support, we will bravely claim our dreams and passionately face our fears to live in a consensual relationship with our planet.

There will be no explicit touch with one another, rather this a chance to go deep and claim your autonomy.

All humans are welcome! When the class begins it will be a closed container, please try not to come late. And please bring a journal, something to write with if possible, and anything to make you comfortable in the space.

john kraus

Edge Tools Sharpening & Care – Saws and Files

This class will focus on the sharpening,use and care of various saws. we will joint and sharpen various types of saws handsaws,crosscut saws, etc. you may bring your saws to work on but please bring a sharp 60 degree triangular file to use.

Paeonia Sherrow

Felting

Full day felting class. Folks will need to be present for both morning and afternoon sessions. Students will start from raw wool, create their own patterns and felt a small pouch, wallet, purse or mason jar coozie. This class is great for the complete beginner and for those with experience who want to try something new or freshen their skill. As an instructor, my intention is to offer you this craft in such a way that you can recreate it and grow at home on your own. All materials will be provided for a materials fee of $20. In general, this class is open for age 12 & up, younger folks can feel free to talk with me if they want to join.

robin allison

Field Botany 202

Take your knowledge of plants to a higher level! We’ll focus more deeply on plant family characteristics, terminology, and perhaps some of the more obscure natives of our area. Some previous study of plant lore recommended, but not required.

Tracy Wilson

Fire-Starting Ferro Rods and How to Use Them

Ferrocerium Rod or is it a Mischmetal rod? How long will it last? What tinder do I look for and use? What’s the best way to strike my rod?

This class is a combination of lecture, demonstration and hands on learning that will help you get the most out of your Ferro rod.

Adults and children are encouraged to work together as a team.

There is a materials fee of $12.00 that gets you a Fatwood Ferro rod, scrapper, and various tender materials used in the class. Bring your own Ferro Rod and the materials fee is waived.

James Clinkscales

Flintknapping

In this class you will learn the basic methods of flintknapping so you can make an arrowhead or spear point. This includes percussion and pressure flaking techniques using stone, wood and antler tools. Copper Ishi’s will be used for pressure flaking.

Debbie Lienhart

Fruit tree grafting

We’ll learn and practice several fruit trees methods, which can be used during different times of the year. We will practive grafting with branches. Pawpaw seedlings and scion wood are available for $5 if you would like to graft a tree to take home. Bring pruners and a grafting knife or other single bevel knife if you have them.

Miranda Coonrod

Hand Spindle Spinning

Come explore the drop spindle! a simple hand tool used by people the world over since before time to put twist into fiber of all sorts to make yarn and useable string. They have a long history but are still used today by many traditional people and new spinning crafters. all materials and tools provided but if you have your own drop spindle there is no need to sign up as the class limit is based on the number of spindles available. We will discuss different animal fibers and how to process them. Up your fiber intake…warning: you may become a fiber fanatic.

Glenn Ingram

Hand Tool Woodworking

This is an open class to come by and try out hand tool woodworking and work on projects. Try out a spring pole lathe, a draw knife, a plane, and many more.

Baram Kim

Happiness Within – Elements of Life open talk

Learn the power of Inner Peace and Happiness Within on open talk with Baram, Abhayam & YOU! Join Baram and Abhayam as they share their life journey finding peace and happiness, then open talk & practice of Cultivating Happiness.

Ian Snider

Horses in the Forest

We will go over the basic care and partnership between woodsmen and horse then safely harvest timber with horse power. Receive instruction from a seasoned woodsman and his family who make their living from the Appalachian Forest.

patrick Ironwood

How to find each other after the crash. Building and maintaining hidden time capsules systems for post-apocalypse messaging and map sharing.

The essentials for maintaining post-apocalypse social connections, a way we can find each other without civilization’s tools.

After the system crashes “we” will want to be able to find each other and communicate over time.

This is also a creative writing exercise or practice for the real thing- we will write in a journal as though the crash has already happened. We will record what future readers will want to know. And next year we will recover our cache and re-read – evaluate and write more.

What if all event sites had these? It is like a shrine or a time capsule with the maps and journals, and other small useful items and artifacts.

As we prepare for life beyond civilization whether it’s tomorrow or in 200 years, whether it’s a computer glitch, a monkey wrench or a wooden shoe, our future ancestors will remember us by what we leave behind.

We will cover and brainstorm on at least the following:

*Container types

*Container location marking systems- How to hide and locate (how do only the right people find it)

*What maps to use and then mark on them locations of other proposed sites and paths to them.

*A list of what would be in the containers

If time permits we will go into a discussion of tribal gatherings as a form of revolutionary preparedness. If there were to be massive civil unrest or any of the possible collapse scenarios, local militias with guns and authoritarian control would attempt to rule, the wise among them would see the value of practical earth skills and in time our skills of circling, communication and self-government could unite the warring tribes after the eschaton.

Steve Torma

Introduction to Sacred Sexuality

After our survival instinct, sexual energy is the most powerful force in the human experience. How do we access and guide this energy? With the heart. And what guides our heart? The overall spiritual purpose of our lives. When all three are combined: sex, heart, and spirit, we can live a deeply satisfying life of service to our ultimate vision. Ideas and practices for improving your physical and emotionally-intimate relationships. With the former President of Earthaven Ecovillage and co-founder of The REAL Center.

Sean and Nesta Kennedy

Intuition for Survival!

We are born with a voice inside that is here not only to help us make the right decisions for ourselves but also keep us safe. In this fun interactive class, deepen your intuition and use it to protect yourself in survival situations. We will also cover taking action for self protection when our intuition senses danger.

Charly Aurelia

Knives: Use and Defense In Self Protection

Many of us carry knives, and for many different reasons.

This is a hands on class that will increase your chance of survival when things get direct and go beyond what awareness and de-escalation can handle.

Learn no-nonsense, practical, functional, and proven skills for surviving violence with edged weapons.

* See what Charly is doing and is offering at www.facebook.com/wncmountainforge

Shawn Kelly

Make a strike-a-light kit from an old file

Emily Bell

Make a Turkey Wing Broom!

Join me for this beginner’s class and walk away with your very own turkey wing broom! These are small, beautiful brooms made of broomcorn (sorghum bicolor) that are perfect to use with your dustpan or near your fireplace.

We will briefly discuss the history as well as how to grow broomcorn. Participants must have moderate hand strength.

There is a $12 materials fee- please bring it with you to class.

Jason Drevenak

Making Buffalo Leather Shoulder Bags

Making buffalo leather shoulder bags

If the shoulder bag you carry just isn’t big enough come and learn to design, lay out,and create a medium, large or Xtra large buffalo leather shoulder bag to put all your cool primitive stuff in. All materials (including leather, buckskin for lacing and tools) provided. Come by Drev’s camp to see what a finished bag looks like.

Materials fee is:

$20 for a medium bag,

$30 for a large bag,

and $40 for an Xl bag

Lauren Jacobs

Making clothing patterns (templates) for your body

This class covers the basics of how to make clothing to fit your body. We’ll discuss how clothing affects body function and movement, how to create a clothing pattern (template), measurements and how to alter and construct pattern (template) shapes, and you’ll leave with a small-scale pattern (template) with measurements along with instructions on how to execute the pattern and make your garment when you get home.

No sewing or clothing experience necessary.

Mateo Ryall

Medicinal Plant and Tree Walk

We will explore the area to identify different medicinal species of plants and trees, discussing traditional uses and current medical research into phyto -constituents . All experience levels welcome.

Jamie Sparks

Medicine as Food-Preserving the Herbal Harvest

These mountains are full of herbal medicines that our body can enjoy and utilize to increase our vitality and maximize our nutritional intake. Learn who and how as we meet and taste many forms of some of these wild plants that will keep your body vital and wild and just a bit less domesticated. Come learn how to create to create herbal vinegars, honeys, powders and so much more that can easily allow you to “eat something wild everyday”.

No class fee, but donations definitely appreciated to cover costs of ingredients.

Chelsea Morning

Netted Water Bottle Holder

Learn basic Macrame’ and create a netted water bottle holder.

bradley jones

Perennial Vegetables; Virulent Food

An exploration of the most aggressive food plants – for home use, or to take over the world.

Laura Roscoe

Pine Needle Baskets

Let’s make a beautiful coiled pine needle basket from the needles of the long leaf pine. Ages 14 and up only.

Sabrina Squires

Sewing Fur Hats

This is an in depth class that will walk students through the steps of making a fur hat. We will work from full hides, trace out our patterns, sew fur and cloth liners to complete our hats. Basic sewing techniques, and pattern making will be discussed. Students will leave with a completed fur hat.

Charity Cimarron

Singing Our Way Through

Peoples of the world have been using their voices to build community, move mountains, and heal wounds, as long as we can remember. Come raise your voice in harmony as we sing our way through many cultures and vocal styles. Bring a notebook!

All ages and experiences welcome

Chris Farmer

Small Off-Grid Power Systems

We’ll be reviewing the basics of small off-grid solar and micro-hydro power systems. Feel free to bring your own questions about design, installation and maintenance of off-grid electrical systems. Teacher has lived off-grid for over 19 years. He can run a welder and plasma cutter on his solar system on sunny days. But we’ll mostly be keeping it to the basics of how to design, install and maintain a small electrical system for a small cabin, tiny house, RV, or boat. Yes yes.

Jeffrey Gottlieb

Southeastern Style Moccasins (Part 2)

Continuing morning session: take patterns we made in am, cut out and sew beautiful, custom fitted Southeastern style moccasins. Fee waived if you bring your own buckskin.

Peace Weaver

Spinning Wool Yarn

Learn the ancient timeless craft of spinning yarn. One of the earliest and most primitive of skills is also the most relaxing and meditative …

Learn to spin yarn from wool… how it gets off a sheep, cleaned washed, prepared and spun into fiber, then plied into cord, rope, yarn or thread … using a drop spindle students will learn to use their fingers, and hands to spin.

Youth are welcome with a parent … materials provided ($1 class fee) spindles and extra fiber can be purchased to bring home ($8-10)

Spencer Two Dogs

Stick Jiu Jutsu

Drawing on a variety of martial disciplines, Spencer will offer training in pain compliance, holds, and compassionate alternatives to ‘striking’ arts involving sticks of various length. Escapes, chokes, locks, pins, and takedowns will be trained. No experience is necessary, however, students of martial arts will recognize many techniques and universal principles as practiced in Gi and no Gi methods.

Students will learn options for pocket sticks, improvised stick like tools, and hiking / walking sticks.

Spencer operates LOTSWild Martial Arts in western NC and teaches year round covering Kenpo, Filipino arts, Taijutsu / Ninjutsu, Tang Soo Do, and Jiu Jutsu.

This class involves personal contact and discomfort. Please come with a good heart, open attitude, and willingness to experience pain.

Eric Blevins

Thai Massage

Thai Massage is an ancient healing art that is beneficial to the giver and receiver. It is very interactive with lots of movement and assisted stretching. Please bring a blanket or yoga mat.

Natalie Bogwalker

Tiny House Design – an Intro

Is a tiny house right for you? This is a crash course for people wanting to know more about building beautiful tiny homes using sustainable and natural building techniques, as well as ethically harvested local materials. An overview of the theory, as well as basic design considerations and approaches will be explored.

Christina Gordon

Womens Fire Making

This class is for women only where we will find our fire by friction within. Put a bow-drill kit together start to finish and take it home to continue your practice.

Saturday (7/1/2017) – Evening

Yona FrenchHawk

Cherokee Sweat Lodge

Yona is a full-blooded member of The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Born and raised on the Qualla Boundary in Cherokee NC Yona has a deep connection to Turtle Island/Mother Earth. He will share the Cherokee Prophesy of Feminine and Masculine and how they live in balance to honor all life and living things. Through ceremony, song, and honoring, Yona has been tasked by his Tsalagi elders to continue to weave the web of life by sharing the Tsalagi way and helping to connect all the colors of the rainbow.

Drinks lots of fluids. Men will be wearing shorts and women we ask to wear a skirt or wrap and a loose fitting top that covers the shoulders. Also bring a towel.

Age Limit 18 and Older ONLY

liz thecowgirl

Evening Cow Milking

We will gather from 7:30-8:30 to discuss the basics of cow handling, and each participant will have the opportunity to milk Honey, our beloved Guernsey cow.

Bring a jar or vessel for a taste!

Children should be accompanied by an adult.

Please wear closed toed shoes.

All are welcome to come watch and chat. Only those signed up will be able to try their hands at milking.

Phil Ferguson

Swordplay Arena

The Wandering Swordsmen will run the Swordplay Arena each evening from 8-10pm during the last light of the day Wednesday-Sunday. We will run field battles from 8-9pm, including games like capture the flag, javelin dodgeball, and archery tag! From 9-10pm we will light up the 20′ wide arena tent for tournament style games including 1v1 and 2v2 tournaments with single sword, sword and shield, dual sword, and other weapon styles.

All our boffer gear is made for full contact combat and tested monthly for compliance with the regulations provided by The Belegarth Medieval Combat Society, a national boffer league with very strict standards for safety and game play. All our swords, shields, spears, javelins, bows, arrows, and other gear are designed to safely engage in the highly physical and athletic sport of boffing, or padded weapon combat. All players must have a waiver on file to play, and minors must have their waiver filled out by a legal guardian. The waiver is available to fill out online at the following link, and we will have paper copies on site as well.

https://www.smartwaiver.com/v/wanderingswordsmen/

We will also have gear for sale and information about our summer camps and classes for all ages of people who are interested in this growing sport! Come check out our donation based weekly battles every Sunday at Carrier Park in West Asheville from 1-3pm for kids and 3-6pm for adults! See our website at www.thewanderingswordsmen.com for more information.

Sunday (7/2/2017) – Early Morning (before breakfast)

Tara Rawson

Acrobatic Partner Yoga

Start your day with movement, playfulness and lots of laughter! Meet and connect with your fellow friends at Firefly each morning. We’ll practice trust exercises, acrobatic partner play to strengthen and lengthen and we’ll always finish with thai massage techniques. You will go through your day feeling strong, energized and relaxed. Beginners are welcome and no partner is needed. Bring a mat, blanket, towel or skin.

Ian Snider

Chainsaw 101

We will go over the basic use and care of a chainsaw, learn to safely fell a tree, and break it down into useable material. Receive instruction from a seasoned woodsman and his family who make their living from the Appalachian Forest.

liz thecowgirl

Morning Milking

We will gather from 8:30-9:30 to discuss the basics of cow handling, and each participant will have the opportunity to hand milk one of our Jersey or Guernsey cows.

Bring a jar or vessel for a taste!

Children should be accompanied by an adult.

Please wear closed toed shoes.

All are welcome to come hang out and chat about cows. Only those who’ve signed up will be able to milk.

Sunday (7/2/2017) – Morning

Lauren Jacobs

10 basic hand stitches you should know

This class will cover 10 basic hand stitches for you to use everyday. If we complete all 10 within the time aloud, there will be “bonus round” stitches. Everyone will leave with a sampler that they’ve executed.

No sewing experience necessary

Fuz Sanderson

40 Minute Forks

40 minute forks: Thursday Morning, Friday morning, Sunday Morning,

Don’t eat your salad with a spoon! This a wood carving gateway skill, we’ll make a fork you can use in the wilderness, or in the office…

Limit 20 people, Age 12 and above. you will need a sharp knife, and you will feel empowered.

Alexandra Tait

Archery Lesson and Shoot

Stretch warm-up, professional lesson and supervised shooting. All equipment included. We will use training fiberglass recurve bows with wooden arrows shooting into straw bales.

$5 Arrow Fee covers wear and tear for use of archery equipment.

Micah Wiles

Barktan Basics

Bark tanning is a traditional method of making grain leather using tannins from tree bark and other plant sources. This class will delve into the basic process of bark tanning and we will discuss sourcing tannin material and tools. We will work hands-on with deer hides at all stages of the process so that attendees will leave the class ready to start tanning at home.

The first 10 to sign up will get to work hands on with hides, others may or may not depending on availability of time and materials.

Luke Learningdeer

Bird Language, The Conversation of the Wilds!

The astounding World of Birds and Bird Language offers us new and novel insights and unexpected wisdoms that greatly expand our Awareness and understanding of the wild landscape.

Come ready for an inspiring class that dives deep into the lives of our local feathered friends, and teaches practical techniques to begin the life changing journey of joining the Conversation of the Wilds.

Zac Fittipaldi

Black Ash Berry Baskets

Learn to make your very own basket for picking berries and other nice things.

Age limit: 15 and up

Class Fee: $20

Tod Kershaw

Blacksmithing

This class is for people who want to get started blacksmithing! This information-rich class will cover topics such as choosing charcoal vs. coal, building your forge, choosing your material (raw steel vs. re-using/recycling old metal), and repairing broken metal tools. Those who signup will get at least 5-10 minutes of hammer-time. Whoever wants to come can come and watch but only the 12 who sign up are guaranteed time with a hammer.

Sean and Nesta Kennedy

Combative Flow

Learn techniques and training ideas to help you move freely in all aspects of combat as well as everyday life.

Chelsea Fox

Composting Toilets!

Learn how to stop flushing your excrements down clean drinking water and help build precious soil by composting “humanure.” Composting toilet systems can be successful in both urban and rural areas, are completely safe when done right (we’ll discuss what that looks like) and have the potential to preserve precious water! Join us if you’ve ever considered how ridiculous it is that we go to the bathroom in water and want to learn how you can stop participating in a broken nutrient cycle.

Corr de Joch

De-escalation of Pre-Violent Conflict

Demonstration, training & practice of very effective method for turning a pre-violent conflict into an opportunity for sincere dialogue & respect. Both nonviolence AND self-defense techniques are integrated into a process that is preferable to the sum of its parts, showing that the two schools of thought need not be held mutually exclusive. And in case de-escalation does not work every time, we will practice a few easy-to-learn, attack-stopping unarmed self-defense moves that are highly effective without mastery of a martial artform.

Steven Townsend

Drum maintenance and tutorial

Learn how to tighten Drums, how to re-head Drums, the different types, Also I will answer any questions you may have regarding Drum and/or previous classes, fill free to drop in and DRUM!

john kraus

Edge Tools Sharpening & Care – Edge Tools Fest

Use and sharpening of edge tools. This session is your last chance to hang out with John, a true tool-making expert. You can sharpen and go over maintenance for whatever edge tools you bring. Participants are encouraged to bring your own tools and sharpening equipment. Go pick his brain if you haven’t yet!

Ekaterina Rodriguez

Embodying Acceptance

Engaging mindfulness, movement & experiential exercises within the axis of self and other for the embodiment of deep acceptance.

Barron Brown

Finish Up Wood Carving Projects and Fish Nets

We’ll be at Barron’s Instructor Camp (Field) and finishing up anything you started this weekend. Come on down!

Bring a sharp knife.

Age limit: 10 and older unless accompanied by an adult.

Tracy Wilson

Fire-Starting Ferro Rods and How to Use Them

Ferrocerium Rod or is it a Mischmetal rod? How long will it last? What tinder do I look for and use? What’s the best way to strike my rod?

This class is a combination of lecture, demonstration and hands on learning that will help you get the most out of your Ferro rod.

Adults and children are encouraged to work together as a team.

There is a materials fee of $12.00 that gets you a Fatwood Ferro rod, scrapper, and various tender materials used in the class. Bring your own Ferro Rod and the materials fee is waived.

Becky Beyer

Fish Net Weaving with Becky Beyers and Barron Brown

Join Becky Beyer and Barron Brown to learn the ancient art of fish net weaving using shuttles, cordage, and one special knot. Take home your own shuttle or use ours. We will also discuss the history of nets and chat about different types of nets while we weave. 5$ donation for materials.

Nicholas Parker

Fungi in the forest and beyond

Medicinals and their uses and applications

Basic genera identification.

Small forage for basic species identification.

Fungi life cycle within the forest and applications within human scarred world.

Creating cardboard spawn from stem butts found in woodland.

justin sutera

Hand Drill Friction Fire

Come learn to make Hand Drill friction fire. Students will use pre gathered materials to craft their own kit and learn about proper technique to successfully make fire. Students get to take home the friction kit that they make.

Reishi Strauss

Intuitive Plant Relationships

Discover and develop a personal relationship with your plant allies through meditation, heart-centric perception, and breath work.

Come prepared to drop into a deep state of listening where the plants will do most of the talking.

Baram Kim

Journey into Radiant Life

Join Baram & Abhayam to learn a self-healing and revitalizing lifestyle. It is based on integrating nature’s elements to harmonize, rejuvenate, and strengthen the spirit, mind, and body by unlocking our warrior essence within.

Alinahh Ever

Letting Go & Rising Up

We groan up and find out that our options for releasing anger and other heavy emotions are very limited. Connecting in deeply with self, we will do some deep perspective shifting with people in our lives. We will learn some powerful physical and vocal practices to release, including shaking and having tantrums that heal. Get ready to dance to out some of those strong emotions too as we listen to loud anger-provoking music and shake our booties. We’ll also share ways that we’ve all found to lift us in those difficult moments. And we’ll weave in connection and honoring of pacha mama who welcomes and transforms all.

With Alinahh Ever and Zeke Kotikovsky

Emily Marantz

Medicinal Mycellial Networking

Mycelium (mushrooms) have so much to teach us and share with us – in many practical ways, and through know-ticing how they grow, break down, and allow forests of trees to communicate through underground networks.

We will learn a very simple, effective and easy way to grow medicinal edible mushrooms in a mason jar (in a sterile way – and no lab required)! We will then discuss what mycelial networks teach us about how to truly support each other through this time of great transition…how to transition with ease and grace. Essentially we will be discussing and exploring how to (most easily) grow and BE and carry the Medicine.

Rachel Watersong

Meditation 101

If you’ve always wanted to try meditation, but are not sure how to do it or if you’ve tried it for a few minutes and thought to yourself, “this sucks!” or if you just need a break from the hustle and bustle come sit with us. I’ll offer some initial instruction for shamatha (breath-focused) meditation. No gimmicks, no flashy lights, just plain old watching your breath and learning how to tame your wild and crazy mind. We’ll also talk about common barriers that show up on the cushion and how to find your own practice community. Bring a thick pillow or cushion if you have one, we’ll make it work.

Chelsea Morning

Netted Water Bottle Holder

learn basic macrame’ while creating a netted water bottle holder.

Chloe Buzzotta

Permaculture 101 (Intro)

An introductory class on the ethics, principles, and techniques of permaculture. We will go over the history of permaculture and how to integrate it into cities, landscapes, businesses, and homes. Permaculture is a design system for creating sustainable human settlements and homesteads, and incorporates things like gardens, rainwater catchment, livestock, etc. to maximize yields while reducing inputs.

Justina Prenatt

Personal Ecology of Place: Developing a Relationship with Your Place on Earth

Wherever you live, city or mountain holler, you live with beloved Earth. Modern living separates us from being in relation with Earth herself. Through mindfulness, simple daily practices, and ceremony you can cultivate deep abiding connection with Earth from any place in the world, even a concrete skyscraper, if you must. Learn to Rejoice, Grieve, Rest, and Renew with the most constant love affair you can ever have – between the Earth and yourself.

Adriana Jerez

Positive Reinforcement Training For Animal Husbandry

What do cows, chickens, and dogs all have in common? They can all learn using positive reinforcement!

We will be using principles of learning theory to teach new behaviors to our student animals. Class participants will have time to experiment with learning principles on multiple species including cows, chickens, and dogs.

We will learn:

different ways to teach new behaviors

ways to modify and/or eliminate existing (bad) behaviors

how to make veterinary care easy and stress-free

methods for handling a fearful animal

how training can improve our relationship with the animals under our care

Participants will leave this class with a strong foundation for beginning to apply these skills with their own animals at home.

Eric Wolf

Raising Wild Children as Domesticated Parents

We will explore how the role of parent as defined by our culture limits us and our children’s lives. We will seek to expose the various ruses and limits that our training as parents places inside us. We will seek to free ourselves of these limitations with the short time we have for the survival of future generations. We seek to find a way between the weight of personal history and our children’s survival in the age of extinction. This is an participatory workshop with a combination of lecture, group brainstorm and conversation.

Scotty Karas

Sensory Play – Games and Activities

Awaken and hone your sensory awareness through games and activities. Learn to walk quietly and listen intently with fun games. Expand upon your senses of smell, touch, and taste with interactive activities. These engaging games and activities enhance our sensory awareness and bring us to the present moment. This present moment awareness enhances our ability to connect with nature, deepens our relationships, and brings about a peaceful state of mind. Learn skills, games, and activities to take home and share with your community.

Kiran Sirah

Telling Stories That Matter

Kiran Singh Sirah, President, International Storytelling Center

This interactive discussion based workshop will explore methods and techniques for creating and performing your own story within the broader genre of storytelling for social change. It will involve work- a light narrative meditation- so come prepared with an open heart and mind!

Elise Damilatis

The 6 Steps of Healing, The Wise Woman Way

Come learn a truly holistic, integrative and empowered approach to wellness – the Wise Woman Way!

Steve Torma

The Art of Intimacy (NVC) Level 2

For those with some familiarity with Nonviolent Communication. Using NVC Dance Floors and Somatic Experiencing to move from pain to compassion, from the illusion of conflicting needs to finding win/win strategies, from grasping for approval to deep inner peace, and from negativity to the natural joy of life. With the former president of Earthaven Ecovillage and co-founder of The REAL Center.

Glenn Ingram

The Simplest Bench There Ever Was

Check out the simplest bench out there (other than an old door on some saw horses) that you can use to plane, saw, cut joinery, and most any task using hand tools. It is solid yet fairly portable and can be stowed away easily if space is an issue. It uses the magic of pegs and wedges to hold things in place. It is easy and cheap to build. Come see how it works and try it out.

Rebekah Luhrs

Therapeutic Flight And Healing Arts (AcroYoga & Thai Massage)

In a culture where we have lost a deep level of physical connection, AcroYoga offers a space where people can connect with one another, build trust, and develop deep and meaningful relationships. Rooted in the mindfulness of yoga, AcroYoga is a practice that is available for every body, age, and ability. It is a dynamic partner practice that blends the wisdom of yoga, the dynamic power of acrobatics, and the loving kindness of healing arts. In this session, participants explore Thai massage while both giving/basing and receiving/flying. In this space, we engage in positive and healthy touch/contact that allows participants to cultivate more open and compassionate communication towards one another. Postures focus on spinal elongation and traction, where gravity is used as a tool for releasing, decompressing and twisting the body. In this portion of the practice, the whole body becomes the expression of unconditional love and the symbol of balance.

Papillon DeBoer

Tools for Healing Sexual Trauma

This workshop is for survivors of sexual trauma, allies, and healers. We will review some facts and statistics, then focus on building skills and tools for healing. These will include breathing, somatic and cognitive skills in order to work with emotional dysregulation, boundaries, and self-criticism and shame. We will not be processing personal wounds or doing healing work on each other. In order to keep the space safe, we will not be discussing personal trauma stories or identifying our reasons for attending. If panic arises at the thought of participating in this workshop, please be gentle with yourself and consider attending another time.

Doug Elliott

Tulip Poplar Baskets

In this class we will make beautiful strong baskets from tree bark. They are functional and stylin! Bring a sharp knife and $ 20 materials fee. (20 students max)

Charly Aurelia

Wayfinding : Compass And Map

Wayfinding is a primary skill/relationship.

Knowing where you are and perhaps, at least a little about where you may be headed.

Come unlearn and learn !

If you hold the belief that you “have a poor sense of direction” this class is definitely for you! But, it is also for everyone, whether experienced or inexperienced.

Please bring a compass -baseplate style preferred- if you have one (if you are buying one, I suggest a baseplate compass with adjustable declination), and any maps you may have.

Be prepared to come back from your foraging, hikes, explorations and trekking !

* See what Charly is doing and is offering at www.facebook.com/wncmountainforge

Peace Weaver

What are you Wearing? Clothing, Mending and Making

Ever wonder what you’re wearing ? learn the three type of fabric, and the two types of fibers … and all the many variations … learn the difference between woven’s and knits … how to weave, knit, felt, sew, make and repair clothing … as well as purchase, care for and wear your clothing with consciousness and sustainability in mind.

Learn about consumer traps … like bamboo (not an eco-fiber!), rayon, cotton, microfiber, leather, satin etc … why you don’t need to dry clean many items … and how to tell where something is made and what it’s made of.

this class will include samples, teaching demos, and hands on touch, try and feel … you can also bring your clothing projects and mending for help with repairs and advice.

Ryan Milt

Wild Pesto Preparation

We’ll be making pesto from wild-harvested greens, wild garlic, and wild nuts! Time saving tricks to crack and separate nuts that were locally harvested from this bioregion last fall. Pesto will be hand ground with a pestle and mortar found in this area! Your hard work will be rewarded with a tasty creation and the knowledge to replicate it.

Sunday (7/2/2017) – Afternoon

Reishi Strauss

Appalachian Medicinal Plant and Tree Walk

Learn how to identify medicinal plants, trees, mushrooms, and flowers of Appalachia, as well as the basics of Herbalism such as sustainable wildcrafting, plant processing techniques, and medicinal preparations. This walk is family friendly, open to children & teens

Debbie Lienhart

Bamboo Rain Sticks

This class we will make rain sticks from bamboo, which is locally abundant and needs to be used. Bamboo will be provided. You are welcome to bring decorative items to add to your project. If you have them, bring a sharp and/or sturdy knife or hatchet (for splitting small pieces of bamboo). This is a beginning level class.

Micah Wiles

Barktan Basics

Bark tanning is a traditional method of making grain leather using tannins from tree bark and other plant sources. This class will delve into the basic process of bark tanning and we will discuss sourcing tannin material and tools. We will work hands-on with deer hides at all stages of the process so that attendees will leave the class ready to start tanning at home.

The first 10 to sign up will get to work hands on with hides, others may or may not depending on availability of time and materials.

Zac Fittipaldi

Black Ash Berry Baskets (Part 2) – Finishing

We will finish making our berry baskets that we started in the morning.

Ages 15 and up

Charly Aurelia

Building A Life Saving Emergency Medical Kit : For When You Need It RIGHT NOW !

Your eyes widen, your heart rate rises, your breath becomes short, your mouth opens to a gasp !! ….you need to act now…Get Your Kit !!

Come get some tips about building your emergency medical kit and how to scale it to the number in your group, the length of your adventure, the size of your vehicle, etc.

Learn about new gear and equipment that is available and pertinent to explorers, adventureres, homesteaders…everyone.

Chris Farmer

Carbon-Negative Cooking on Wood Gasifier Stove

We’ll be doing a live demo of cooking on a Top Lit Up Draft (TLUD) wood-gasifier stove – cooking with the woodgas created by transforming wood chips into charcoal. The charcoal can then be made into biochar as a high-quality fertilizer for your garden. Yes folks, this is a carbon-negative method for cooking food and boiling water. This is not really a class for chefs, but for folks who want to know how to cook and make charcoal at the same time. This stove isn’t going to change the world, but the basic ideas behind how it works just might change the world someday. Who knows? Come find out.

Spencer Two Dogs

Clothing as a Tool

Chances are good that when a situation requires us to shift into an improvising, survival mindset we will not have the best tools we would wish for. Self defense, wilderness travel, auto repair, international adventures, first aid, and more can be enhanced with many things we wear every day. From plastic water bottles to nylon hose, belts and shoelaces to plastic credit cards and an old sock; things we are familiar with can be turned into useful items with more than one purpose. Most of all this class helps us get creative in new ways and think outside the box. This class is based on a chapter in Spencer’s book The Appalachian Ninja – Clothing as a Tool. Book not required for class!

Students will learn to categorize items based on use and functionality. Class interest will direct how much time we spend in a given area from traps to defense, repairs or navigation through the wilderness. Flexible items will be taught for restraint, arrest and immobilization as well.

Spencer directs Land of the Sky Wilderness School in western NC and enjoys traveling and teaching around the world.

MELISSA CLARK

Community Rights

We the People are more powerful than we dare to believe. For almost two centuries now, since large corporations started to win Constitutional so-called “rights” in 1819, We the People have been slowly forgetting who We are. And forgetting that the American revolutionaries who founded our nation designed corporations as a subordinate legal fiction, chartered to serve a specific public need and to cause no harm. How far we have strayed from that reality! But it doesn’t have to be that way.

If we relearn our history, if we understand again that corporations were designed to serve us, not to rule us, in this “democratic republic”, then we can reclaim our sovereignty. Once we understand this, the sky’s the limit. We can rein in corporate constitutional “rights” as have more than 200 communities in nine states. We can get back to governing ourselves, collectively determining what a majority of us wants, in this nation founded on the principle of majority rule.

What would this look like at the municipal or county level? What do the majority of local residents want regarding water and air quality, land use, cell phone towers, food safety, big box and chain stores, forest health, etc? And is your local government prepared to stand tall with that majority when push comes to shove?

Since 1999, 200 communities in nine states have passed legally groundbreaking locally-enforceable Community Rights laws which . . . have banned fracking and oil drilling, water withdrawal for bottling, toxic sludge dumping on farmland, corporate-managed infrastructure, unsustainable energy development, and more. 95% of these laws have never been challenged in court.

Mateo Ryall

Dakotah Access Pipeline – Now What? (Indigenous and Environmental Rights and Water Protection)

We all drink water, but not everyone has rights protecting their water sources. Come join a conversation with two activists who joined the protest at Standing Rock to hear about their experiences, and pathways moving forward. Strategies for environmental and social justice, divestiture, pipeline resistance, community rights, and water protection will be discussed.

Discussion introduced and facilitated by Cathy Holt and Mateo Ryall, both of whom are Asheville locals who were present at the Standing Rock action last year.

john kraus

Edge Tools Sharpening and Care: Edge Tools Fest

Use and sharpening of edge tools. This session is your last chance to hang out with John, a true tool-making expert. You can sharpen and go over maintenance for whatever edge tools you bring. Participants are encouraged to bring your own tools. Go pick his brain if you havent yet!

Luna Dietrich

Embodying Your Rights of Pleasure

Pleasure is our natural born right. So why for most of us is it challenging to access? There are many blocks in our modern, fast paced, dominator culture that disembody us and keep us disconnected from our sources of pleasure. It can be scary and challenging to relax into the ever present now and actually claim feeling amazing! Our minds may say it’s shameful! Obnoxious! It may feel vulnerable, but the power is in the surrender and the benefits of pleasure are infinite. In this workshop, we will first allow and accept whatever inhibitions come up and hold us back. And then we will bravely enter a pleasure salon of the self. With the help of sound, movement, breath, and our senses, you will be invited to tap into what is always available. Without goals or expectations, you may just possibly feeling really freaking good.

There will be no explicit genital touch with self. It’s an invitation to embody pleasure in less obvious ways. All humans are welcome! When the class begins it will be a closed container, so try not to come late. If possible, please bring a journal, something to write and anything that would make you more comfortable.

Kenneth Huck

Expanding our Capacity for Sensual Pleasure: A Heart-Sharing Circle

PARTICIPANTS PLEASE ARRIVE AT THE PUBLISHED START TIME AS WE INTEND TO CREATE A SAFE SPACE!

The facilitator will briefly present a method for co-creating a circle of trust and safety. Within that circle of trust participants will organically form an egalitarian teaching and learning community to share their experiences, hopes and questions on the theme of expanding capacity for sensual pleasure.

Facilitator Bio:

Ken facilitates openhearted conversations about sensuality intending to deepen self connection and invite ecstasy.

Josh Fox

Facing Our Grief

Experiencing grief is as natural to the human experience as eating, drinking, dancing, or flint-knapping. Come explore what a grief-friendly cultural model can look like, as we celebrate and witness each other in this forgotten art.

Barron Brown

Finish Up Wood Carving Projects and Fish Nets

Time to finish up whatever you started earlier this weekend.

Bring a sharp knife.

Age limit: 10 and older unless accompanied by an adult.

Tracy Wilson

Fire-Starting Ferro Rods and How to Use Them copy

Ferrocerium Rod or is it a Mischmetal rod? How long will it last? What tinder do I look for and use? What’s the best way to strike my rod?

This class is a combination of lecture, demonstration and hands on learning that will help you get the most out of your Ferro rod.

Adults and children are encouraged to work together as a team.

There is a materials fee of $12.00 that gets you a Fatwood Ferro rod, scrapper, and various tender materials used in the class. Bring your own Ferro Rod and the materials fee is waived.

Miranda Coonrod

Four stranded Rag Rug Braiding

Most braided rugs you see are 3 strand braids that are sewn together. That stitching will always be your weakest link and be the first thing to wear out on your rug. In this class you will learn a 4 strand braid that is woven back on itself to create a durable floor/van/rig/shack/wigwam rug. We’ll be ripping up sheets and plaiting them back together again. Tearing apart to reconstruct something for people step on.

Bill Parravano

Functional Movement, Breathing & Relaxation

This class is all about increasing sensitivity and awareness in your body and how it moves. We will cover the importance of functional movement, breathing and relaxation in the context of primitive/homestead living. Be prepared to move in ways you never thought possible and gain flexibility through breathing that is both dynamic and exhilarating. You will move away from the class with a deeper understanding of your body and the role your nervous system plays in how you feel.

Natalie Bogwalker

Homesteading 101

Ready to try your hand at living with the land? Come learn from a voice of experience. This overview will help you know how to plan your homestead and design your life to meet your goals for sustainability, right livelihood, and connection with the landscape.

Natalie is the founder and director of the Wild Abundance and the Firefly Gathering, both in and around Asheville, NC. Natalie teaches and shares tools and skills that are essential for living harmoniously within the natural systems of the earth.

She lives in her lovely, growing homestead nestled deep in community in the Southern Appalachians. She spends her time harvesting in the wild, building, gardening, planting, putting up food, growing, teaching and scheming about how to introduce more people to Earth-based living, all while worshiping the beauty around her.

Ian Snider

Horses in the Forest

We will go over the basic care and partnership between woodsmen and horse then safely harvest timber with horse power. Receive instruction from a seasoned woodsman and his family who make their living from the Appalachian Forest.

patrick Ironwood

How to sell your art and still love being an artist

How to sell your art and still be an artist

Many of us animate and live our skills, yet still struggle economically.

We will discuss how to turn what we love to do, into a modest middle-class income.

The focus will be on how to do the craftsperson/artist fair/show circuit. If done well, there is where fun, excitement and economic reliance to be discovered.

We will cover and discuss:

how to develop your inventory.

how to price your work.

how to photograph your work. And your booth/instillation.

how to develop your artist statement.

how to (and how not to) fill out applications and use the web-based program “Zapplication”.

how to choose which shows to apply for.

how to develop your 10×10 booth/ installation: set up, sales, etc.…this is a design puzzle which can lead to great rewards.

how to get in and get out and enjoy the rush and the doldrums.

how to survive the weather.

how to use conscious awareness to deal with the, all too often, uptight management at shows.

how to explore our diverse decision making and forgiveness methods in the creative, business and ultimately our personal flow, which art illuminates.

liz thecowgirl

Ice Cream Farm Social and Chat

A family friendly farm chat and ICE CREAM SOCIAL! We will make raw, homemade ice cream together, sharing the burden of churning the raw ingredients (cream, milk and eggs: sorry vegans this one isn’t for you) into the deliciousness we call ice cream. The discussion will be guided by interested participants, and we’ll share what we know (or don’t know) about any farm topic you bring up.

Topics could include:

Rotational Grazing

Cow Handling

Cow Health

Portable Electric Fencing for cows, sheep, poultry, pigs, dogs

Alternative Feeds (including spent brewer’s grain and silage)

Pastured Poultry

Pastured Pigs

Livestock Guardian Dogs (LGDs)

Breeding

Various Management Strategies

Milk Processing (cream, butter, kefir, yogurt, ice cream)

Sliding Scale donation $3-10

Steve Torma

Intro to Sacred Sexuality

After our survival instinct, sexual energy is the most powerful force in the human experience. How do we access and guide this energy? With the heart. And what guides our heart? The overall spiritual purpose of our lives. When all three are combined: sex, heart, and spirit, we can live a deeply satisfying life of service to our ultimate vision. Ideas and practices for improving your physical and emotionally-intimate relationships. With the former President of Earthaven Ecovillage and co-founder of The REAL Center.

Jessica Kaufman

Needle Felting

This is a fantastic skill to have: turning loose wool roving into strong, useful felt WITHOUT needing any water or soap or manual strength for scrubbing/agitating! Using one simple (and very affordable) tool, the barbed needle, we will create faces, figures, pouches, patches, etc with sheep’s wool and the barbed needle only. Everyone is successful in this class, and projects turn out better than most folks imagine. This is a popular class because needle felting is so portable: you can bring your project to any lecture class and work away quietly while listening to other instructors. Come early (Thursday) or late (Sunday) in the Gathering and learn everything you need to create a beautifully felted project. You can also repair holes in wool clothing with needle felting, and add decoration to natural fiber garments. Imagine felting sweet vines and leaves pictorially in woll onto your favorite hat, jacket, sweater, or backpack… See you there! Materials fee is $5/person.

Luke Learningdeer

Our Astounding TREES

We are blessed to live among a vast diversity of TREES. Come meet some of our noteworthy local species. We will discuss Identification, Edible, Medicinal and Utilitarian uses, Ecology, Lore Magic and More!

Adam Ingersoll

Relationship paradigms

Many people within the re-wilding community are becoming increasingly skeptical of the relationship models of the mainstream culture, like marriage, and have begun to look for an alternative option. Polyamory has become of particular interest as we investigate un-colonized societies.

The “Free Love” Movement of the Sixties involved a wanton disregard of the energetic ties inherent in multiple sexual relationships, giving polyamory a bad reputation (otherwise known as “polyfuckery”). Meanwhile, the current model of monogamy is often associated with codependency, a limited support network, and the loss of individual identity. Those who identify with polyamory boast of more freedom and autonomy, while monogamists praise commitment and devotion. Out of this paradox we are beginning to create a paradigm in which our diverse and seemingly contrasting needs can be integrated and celebrated within our relationships. Whether it comes from tribally supported monogamy or synergistically bonded polyamory, we are making the shifts necessary to find ourselves in relationships that offer freedom, authenticity, safety, commitment, and devotion.

In a time when many people doubt the paradigm of marriage, the re-wilding community has looked for a new option.

The preexisting model of monogamy often is one of codependency, a singular support network and being attached at the hip. Early ventures in polyamory involved an wanton disregard for the energetic ties involved n multiple sexual relationships. One side needs more freedom and autonomy the other needs more responsibility and commitment. Out of this paradox we are creating a new central point. Wether it comes from tribally supportive monogamy or synergistically bonded polyamory we are finding a balance between freedom/ authenticity and responsibility/ commitment.

Marc Williams

Southeast Native American Ethnobotany

We will explore the various Native American applications of plants from the southeast and North Carolina specifically as we walk around the gathering grounds. Tribes such as the Cherokee, Catawba and Lumbee will be a particular focus.

Peace Weaver

Spinning Wool Yarn

Learn the ancient timeless craft of spinning yarn. One of the earliest and most primitive of skills is also the most relaxing and meditative …

Learn to spin yarn from wool… how it gets off a sheep, cleaned washed, prepared and spun into fiber, then plied into cord, rope, yarn or thread … using a drop spindle students will learn to use their fingers, and hands to spin.

Youth are welcome with a parent … materials provided ($1 class fee) spindles and extra fiber can be purchased to bring home ($8-10)

Sean and Nesta Kennedy

surviving multiple attackers

This is an interactive and fun class that will look at how to move to stay safe when out numbered.

Lyca Mikhael

Tarp Tact

Tarps provide a flexible, site-specific shelter system to meet almost any environmental condition. Learn a 2-tree ridgeline system that shelters crafting/cooking and provides dry hammock-sleeping. Also: anchors, knots, tensioning, and exemplar pitches. Bring a 10×10’ tarp, 50’+ of Cordage and 4+ stakes to build your Own System!

Ryan Milt

Tea-neath Your Feet & Salad of the Field

We will harvest, prepare, and sample some tasty and nutrient dense wild food ingredients for making tea as well as wild salads. Identification, efficient and sustainable harvesting methods, and nutrition will be discussed.

Eric Blevins

Thai Massage

Thai Massage is an ancient healing art that is beneficial to the giver and receiver. It is very interactive with lots of movement and assisted stretching. Please bring a blanket or yoga mat.

Aileen Peterson

The Primal Woman Salon

Join Aileen Marie of LADY MOON to embark on a journey into reclaiming our feminine body autonomy, exploring natural and ancestral women’s health practices, and rediscovering our innate wisdom of instinctive, primal birth and mothering. Part One of the salon will discuss Our Cycles; Holistic Womb & Breast Health including body and eco-friendly menstrual products; Natural Contraception & Conscious Conception. Part Two of the Salon will discuss Holistic Wellness, Traditional Nutrition, and Primal Movement for Pregnancy, Birth and the Postpartum; Undisturbed, Instinctive Birth; and Freebirth.

Fermenti. foods

Vegetable Fermantation

Basic and Advanced Principles of both Self Brining and Brined Vegetable Fermentation. General discussion with a Make and Take component with a Q&A to follow. Additional technical support is provided as well.

$15 materials fee covers the “Make and Take” materials, enough for 30 people.

Sunday (7/2/2017) – Evening

liz thecowgirl

Evening Cow Milking

We will gather from 7:30-8:30 to discuss the basics of cow handling, and each participant will have the opportunity to milk Honey, our beloved Guernsey cow.

Bring a jar or vessel for a taste!

Children should be accompanied by an adult.

Please wear closed toed shoes.

All are welcome to come watch and chat. Only those signed up will be able to try their hands at milking.

Phil Ferguson

Swordplay Arena

The Wandering Swordsmen will run the Swordplay Arena each evening from 8-10pm during the last light of the day Wednesday-Sunday. We will run field battles from 8-9pm, including games like capture the flag, javelin dodgeball, and archery tag! From 9-10pm we will light up the 20′ wide arena tent for tournament style games including 1v1 and 2v2 tournaments with single sword, sword and shield, dual sword, and other weapon styles.

All our boffer gear is made for full contact combat and tested monthly for compliance with the regulations provided by The Belegarth Medieval Combat Society, a national boffer league with very strict standards for safety and game play. All our swords, shields, spears, javelins, bows, arrows, and other gear are designed to safely engage in the highly physical and athletic sport of boffing, or padded weapon combat. All players must have a waiver on file to play, and minors must have their waiver filled out by a legal guardian. The waiver is available to fill out online at the following link, and we will have paper copies on site as well.

https://www.smartwaiver.com/v/wanderingswordsmen/

We will also have gear for sale and information about our summer camps and classes for all ages of people who are interested in this growing sport! Come check out our donation based weekly battles every Sunday at Carrier Park in West Asheville from 1-3pm for kids and 3-6pm for adults! See our website at www.thewanderingswordsmen.com for more information.