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Center for Prairie Studies

Woodland Wildflower Hike at CERA

Tuesday, April 26, 2016 - 4:45pm to 6:15pm

 

Join CERA Manager Elizabeth Hill on a 1.5 mile spring ephemeral wildflower hike at CERA. Wear sturdy walking shoes and long pants to explore the spring ephemeral wildflowers at CERA!

Van leaves from Rosenfield Center drop-off zone at 4:15 p.m. Hike starts 4:45 p.m. at CERA, meet at Environmental Education Center.

Email Elizabeth Hill to reserve transportation.

Fracking Our Land

Tuesday, April 19, 2016 - 7:30pm to 9:30pm
Joe Rosenfield '25 Center Room 101

Panel of writers, thinkers, environmentalists to discuss fracking on April 19
Conversation will be based on first anthology of creative writing that explores fracking

A panel of four Iowa-based writers, editors, thinkers and environmentalists will discuss "Fracture: Essays, Poems, and Stories on Fracking in America," the country's first anthology of creative writing that explores hydraulic fracking, at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 19, at Grinnell College.

Debra Marquart, Carolyn Raffensperger, Frederick Kirschenmann and Taylor Brorby will all read their work from the anthology and explore impacts of hydraulic fracking on Iowa.

The event, which is free and open to the public, will take place in room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield '25 Center, 1115 Eighth Ave., Grinnell.

Marquart is a professor of English at Iowa State University, teaching in the Master of Fine Arts program in Creative Writing and Environment. The author of a memoir, "The Horizontal World: Growing up Wild in the Middle of Nowhere" and two poetry collections, she has received numerous honors for her work, including John Guyon Nonfiction Award, the Mid-American Review Nonfiction Award, a New York Times Editor's Choice commendation and a 2008 National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Prose Fellowship.

Raffensperger is an environmental lawyer specializing in the changes in law and policy necessary to address climate change and preserve public health and the environment. She is executive director of the Science and Environmental Health network, and has edited three comprehensive volumes on the precautionary principle of environmental law. Her work has been featured in Gourmet magazine, the Utne Reader, Yes! Magazine, the Sun, Whole Earth and Scientific American.

A national expert in sustainable agriculture, Kirschenmann is a family farmer, writer and scholar on ecology. He has held numerous appointments, including U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Organic Standards Board and the National Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production. His farm has been featured in numerous publications, including National Geographic, Business Week, Audubon and Gourmet magazine, for its diverse crop rotation and productivity without using synthetic inputs. His book, "Cultivating an Ecological Conscience: Essays from a Farmer Philosopher," traces the evolution of his ecological and farming philosophy over the past 30 years.

The editor of "Fracture," Taylor Brorby is an award-winning essayist, poet and environmentalist. He is currently pursuing his MFA in Creative Writing and Environment at Iowa State University. His work has been featured in "Rock, Paper, Scissors," "The Englewood Review of Books," on Minnesota Public Radio, North Dakota Public Radio and in numerous newspapers. A talented writer himself, he is currently working on two poetry collections, one related to the Bakken oil boom and the other about the Adirondacks in upstate New York, as well as an essay collection about western North Dakota.

Sponsoring the event are the Center for Prairie Studies and Environmental Studies.

Fracture: Essays, Poems, and Stories on Fracking in America

A panel of four Iowa-based writers, editors, thinkers, and environmentalists will discuss Fracture: Essays, Poems, and Stories on Fracking in America, the country's first anthology of creative writing that explores hydraulic fracturing, at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 19, in Joe Rosenfield '25 Center, Room 101. The discussion is free and open to the public.

Debra Marquart, Carolyn Raffensperger, Frederick Kirschenmann, and Taylor Brorby will all read their work from the anthology and explore impacts of hydraulic fracking on Iowa.

The Center for Prairie Studies and the Environmental Studies Concentration are sponsoring the event.

Grinnell welcomes and encourages the participation of people with disabilities. You can request accommodations from Conference Operations and Events.

Debra Marquart

Marquart is a professor of English at Iowa State University, teaching in the Master of Fine Arts program in Creative Writing and Environment. The author of a memoir, The Horizontal World: Growing up Wild in the Middle of Nowhere and two poetry collections, she has received numerous honors for her work, including John Guyon Nonfiction Award, the Mid-American Review Nonfiction Award, a New York Times Editor's Choice commendation, and a 2008 National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Prose Fellowship.

Carolyn Raffensperger

Raffensperger is an environmental lawyer specializing in the changes in law and policy necessary to address climate change and preserve public health and the environment. She is executive director of the Science and Environmental Health network, and has edited three comprehensive volumes on the precautionary principle of environmental law. Her work has been featured in Gourmet magazine, the Utne Reader, Yes! Magazine, the Sun, Whole Earth, and Scientific American.

Frederick Kirschenmann

A national expert in sustainable agriculture, Kirschenmann is a family farmer, writer, and scholar on ecology. He has held numerous appointments, including director of the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture at Iowa State University. He also has served on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Organic Standards Board and the National Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production. His farm has been featured in numerous publications, including National Geographic, Business Week, Audubon, and Gourmet magazine, for its diverse crop rotation and productivity without using synthetic inputs. His book, Cultivating an Ecological Conscience: Essays from a Farmer Philosopher, traces the evolution of his ecological and farming philosophy over the past 30 years.

Taylor Brorby

The editor of Fracture, Taylor Brorby is an award-winning essayist, poet and environmentalist. He is currently pursuing his masters of fine arts in Creative Writing and Environment at Iowa State University. His work has been featured on Minnesota Public Radio and North Dakota Public Radio and in numerous newspapers. A talented writer himself, he is currently working on two poetry collections, one related to the Bakken oil boom and the other about the Adirondacks in upstate New York, as well as an essay collection about western North Dakota.

Celebrate the Earth During April - May 2016

Monday, April 11, 2016 - 4:00pm to Saturday, May 7, 2016 - 12:00pm

Grinnell College will host a series of events throughout April and early May in celebration of Earth Month. The free, public events will be focused on local food, creativity, volunteering and exploration.

Monday, April 11

Fred Magdoff
4:00 PM Roundtable - Noyce 1022
7:30 PM Public Talk - Joe Rosenfield ‘25 Center 101

Fred Magdoff, Professor Emeritus of Soils at the University of Vermont, will give a roundtable, Soil and Soil Health at 4:00pm in Noyce 1022; and a public talk, Capitalism and Agriculture, at 7:30pm in JRC 101.

Tuesday, April 12 and Thursday, April 14
Undergraduate Research Symposium
11:00 AM-1:00PM, Joe Rosenfield ‘25 Center, various locations

Undergraduate research panel and poster presentations include many student talks on local and global environmental and food justice topics. Arrive at 11:00am to grab a free lunch and full presentation schedule.   Panel presentations in JRC rooms: 202, 203, 209, 225-227. Poster/performance sessions in JRC 101.

Saturday, April 16           

Spring Fest
12:00-4:00 PM, Ecohouse

Join Ecohouse members for a celebration of spring, local foods, music, and community. Explore Ecohouse’s environmental projects and take part in seed planting. Enjoy live music from student performers, springtime crafting, and more!

Saturday, April 16                

National Water Dance
3:00 PM, Conard Environmental Research Area (CERA)

Join Grinnell College and community dancers and         musicians in celebrating the importance of water in our lives through music and dance.

RSVP to Jan Graham grahamj[at]grinnell[dot]edu. Van leaves JRC drop-off zone at 2:15pm, and Mayflower Community at 2:25pm. If driving on your own, meet at EEC at 2:50pm

Monday, April 18             

Site-Specific Studio Critique
1:00-4:00 PM, Conard Environmental Research Area (CERA)

Join Professor Lee Emma Running and her ART320 - Site Specific Studio students for the critique of their place-based art installations at CERA. Student art installations explore how we connect to the Iowa landscape.  RSVP to hilleliz[at]grinnell[dot]edu for transportation.

Tuesday, April 19

Fracture: Essays Poems, and Stories on Fracking in America
7:30 PM, Joe Rosenfield ‘25 Center 101

Join Taylor Brorby (ed.) and Iowa-based writers and thinkers - Debra Marquart, Carolyn Raffensperger, and Frederick Kirschenmann for a book reading and Q&A session on the impacts of hydraulic fracturing (fracking).

Wednesday, April 20                  

Richard Oppenlander
7:15 PM, ARH 302

Consultant and researcher Richard Oppenlander, author of “Food Choice and Sustainability” will guide the audience through a fact filled journey of the food choice-animal agriculture-environment connection, revealing why humanity is currently on a path of pseudo-sustainability.

Wednesday, April 20                

Ecohouse Movie Night
9:00 PM, Bob’s Underground Cafe

Join Ecohouse members to watch “The Secret Life of Plants,” a 1979 documentary based on the book of the same name. The film features time-lapse photography of plants and fungi growing and original score by musician Stevie Wonder.

Friday, April 22

20 Minutes @ 11: Culling the Herd
11:00 AM, Bucksbaum 131 - Faulconer Gallery

Explore our human relationship to white-tailed deer with Professor Lee Emma Running, who will present her recent project “Cure” in which she carves and gilds the bones of roadkill, and CERA Manager Elizabeth Hill, who will provide background on deer management in Iowa.

Saturday, April 23
The Power is Ours! Spiritual Reflections on Earth Day
12:30 PM, Grinnell United Church of Christ

Join UCC members in welcoming Grinnell College faculty Liz Queathem and David Campbell, together with Associate Chaplain and Rabbi Rob Cabelli, who explore spiritual connections to Earth Day and Climate Change.

Saturday, April 23

Eco Fair
11:00 AM-1:00 PM, Joe Rosenfield ‘25 Center, 1st floor and outdoor patio

SEC and Off-the-Grid students will present posters and demonstrations on topics pertaining to sustainable and off-the-grid living, including the tiny home movement,  water sanitation and heating, backcountry camping tips, permaculture, urban gardening, and composting toilets.

Sunday, April 24

Arbor Lake Cleanup
2:00 PM, Arbor Lake Park, 123 Pearl Street

Join IOWATER club in removing waste and beautifying Arbor Lake Park. Be prepared to get dirty, please wear rain boots and old clothes. RSVP to Iowater[at]grinnell[dot]edu. Meet at GORP room in Harris Center or at Arbor Lake Park

Tuesday, April 26

Woodland Wildflower Hike
4:15 - 6:15 PM, Conard Environmental Research Area (CERA)

Join CERA Manager Elizabeth Hill on a 1.5 mile spring ephemeral wildflower hike at CERA. Wear sturdy walking shoes. Hike starts 4:45pm at CERA. Van leaves from JRC drop-off zone at 4:15 P.M. RSVP to hilleliz[at]grinnell[dot]edu for transportation.

Thursday, April 28            

Ecofeminist Organizing Workshop
4:00-5:30 PM, ARH 102
Learn about inclusive organizing with two extraordinary activists! Join Bakken Resistance Pipeline Coalition co-founders and Women Food and Agriculture Network board members Ahna Kruzic and Dr. Angie Carter for a workshop on ecofeminist activism and organizing.

Friday, April 29                              

Food For Thought May Day Celebration
5:00-8:00 PM, Cleve Beach

Join members of Grinnell College’s Food For Thought group to celebrate early May Day. Bring a dish to the potluck and enjoy face-painting, music, and a discussion about campus food activism. Come and find out what Food For Thought is doing to increase the amount of “real food“ on campus!

Saturday, May 7

Tallgrass Audubon Bird Banding
8:00 AM-12:00 PM, Bob and Connie VanErsvelde’s house

Join members of the Tallgrass Audubon Society to learn about bird banding and the natural history of migratory birds. Families welcome! Van leaves from JRC drop-off zone. RSVP to hilleliz[at]grinnell[dot]edu for transportation or address

Sponsored by: Center for Prairie Studies, CERA, Environmental Studies, Faulconer Gallery, Peace and Conflict Studies, Food for Thought, Iowater, Student Environmental Committee, Ecohouse, Poweshiek County SWCD, Advancing Animal Compassion Together, Student Government Association.
 

Fred Magdoff: Capitalism and Agriculture

On Monday, April 11, Fred Magdoff, emeritus professor of plant and soil science at the University of Vermont, will discuss capitalism, agriculture, soil, and soil health in two event.

He will give a talk, “Capitalism and Agriculture” at 7:30 p.m. in Joe Rosenfield '25 Center, Room 101. Before the talk, Magdoff will lead a roundtable discussion about “Soil and Soil Health” at 4 p.m. in Noyce Science Center, Room 1022.

Grinnell College's Center for Prairie Studies is sponsoring the events, which are free and open to the public.

“When a leading soil scientist and a leading political activist are the same person, the results are bound to be interesting,” said Jon Andelson, Rosenfield professor of social science-anthropology and director of the Center for Prairie Studies. “Professor Magdoff will subject the capitalist context of American and world agriculture to critical scrutiny, as he has in much of his published work. If you believe capitalism is the best economic system for agriculture, come and hear an argument to the contrary.”

Numerous social and ecological problems arise from the way that agriculture functions within capitalist economies, according to Magdoff. These include hunger in the midst of plenty, lack of nutrient cycling, poor rotations, inhumane raising of animals on factory farms, poor treatment of farm and slaughterhouse labor, and environmental pollution with pesticides and fertilizers.

He asserts that these problems are outcomes of a system in which the overriding goal and motivating force is profit. In such a system, decisions that makes sense from the narrow economic standpoint, are frequently ecologically and socially irrational.

Magdoff's interests range from soil science to agriculture and food (science, production, economics, policy) to the environment to the U.S. economy. His science research has expored ways to improve soil fertility, especially focusing on the critical role of soil organic matter. He oriented his agricultural outreach activities to explaining the application of ecological principles to food production.

He is co-author of Building Crops for Better Soil: Sustainable Soil Management and What Every Environmentalist Needs to Know About Capitalism. He is co-editor of Agriculture and Food in Crisis: Conflict, Resistance and Renewal. His forthcoming book, Creating an Ecological Society, is due out later this year.

The National Water Dance Comes to Grinnell

Ivy Kuhn ’16 and an ensemble will perform a dance as part of the National Water Dance project at 3 p.m. on Saturday, April 16. Kuhn organized the event and choreographed the community-dance project as part of a Mentored Advanced Project with Celeste Miller, assistant professor of theatre and dance.

Kuhn's performance, which will feature the Tai Chi Women's Group, Grinnell Community Ensemble, and Pioneer String Quartet, will take place at the College's Conard Environmental Research Area (CERA). Sponsored by the Center for Prairie Studies, it is free and open to the public.

The performance at CERA is one of more than 100 National Water Dance sites around the nation that will join together April 16 for a simultaneous event to bring awareness to the pressing issues of water. This event will be live-streamed on the National Water Dance website

National Water Dance is an organization that creates opportunities for dancers of all ages to experience the power of art and performance as a vehicle for social change by collaborating on the formation of a nationwide movement choir.

“Water is so obviously precious to human life — and to all life — that we shouldn’t need a dance to make us realize it. But this dance is taking place at locations all around the country on the same day and at the same time as a statement that we need to achieve an even more profound realization,” said Jon Andelson ’70, Rosenfield professor of science – anthropology and director of the Center for Prairie Studies. 

Each site of the National Water Dance project features a dance that is specifically choreographed to reflect a local water issue.

“I centered my choreography,” Kuhn said, “on the sensory elements of the prairie playing with the imagery of the extensive roots, gravity and sinking, the exchange between breath and contact, in contrast to the internal and external sense of water's fluidity and ability to flood and alter when there is nothing holding it in place.”

Audience participation will be invited at the April 16 event at CERA. “If you can move,” Andelson said, “you can participate in this dance.”

Those interested in participating in the dance are encouraged to attend one of the following workshops, which are open to all ages with no dance experience required:

  • Saturday, April 9, 10:30-11:30 a.m., North Room of the Grinnell Arts Center, 926 Broad St.
  • Saturday, April 9, 1-2 p.m., Caulkins Community Room at the Drake Community Library, 930 Park St.
  • Sunday, April 10, 3:30-4:30 p.m., room 209 of Grinnell College's Joe Rosenfield '25 Center, 1115 Eighth Ave.
  • Tuesday, April 12, 2-3 p.m., Carmen Center, Mayflower Community, 616 Broad St.

Free, round-trip bus transportation to CERA on April 16 will be provided at 2:15 p.m. at the Rosenfield Center. Reservations can be made by contacting Jan Graham, 641-269-4384, by noon, Tuesday, April 13.

To drive to CERA, take Interstate-80 west from Grinnell to Exit 173. Go north on Highway 224 and turn right on the first gravel road (South 12th Avenue East), following it east about 1.5 miles to the main entrance of CERA.

The National Water Dance Comes to Grinnell

Saturday, April 16, 2016 - 3:00pm to 3:30pm
CERA

Featuring live music from the Pioneer String Quartet, dance performance by Ivy Kuhn and Ensemble, Tai Chi Women's Group, and the Grinnell Community Ensemble.

Over 100 sites in 35 states are coming together to bring attention to the pressing issues of water in the United States through embodied action! Come celebrate and bring awareness to the importance of water in our lives!

Bus transportation leaving from the JRC at 2:15 p.m. Please reserve a spot by emailing Jan Graham by noon, Tuesday, April 13th.

Come Dance With Us! Seeking dancers of all ages!

Saturday, April 9, 2016 - 10:30am to Tuesday, April 12, 2016 - 3:00pm
The National Water Dance Comes to Grinnell!

Seeking dancers of all ages! No previous dance experience necessary!

Come learn a simple dance phrase to be performed as part of the National Water Dance at CERA on Saturday, April 16th at 3:00 p.m.

This is a unique opportunity to bring attention to the pressing water issues in the United States through embodied action! Over 100 sites in the United States are participating now!

To join please attend one of the following workshops:

Saturday, April 9th 10:30-11:30 a.m. at Grinnell Area Arts, North Room

Saturday, April 9th 1:00-2:00 p.m. at the Drake Community Library, Caulkins Community Room

Sunday, April 10th 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Grinnell College, JRC 209

Tuesday, April 12th 2:00-3:00 p.m. at the Mayflower Carmen Center

Performance: Saturday, April 16th 3:00-3:30 p.m. at CERA

Please contact Ivy Kuhn, organizer and choreographer for more information: kuhnivy[at]grinnell[dot]edu
 

Capitalism and Agriculture

Monday, April 11, 2016 - 7:30pm to 9:30pm
Joe Rosenfield '25 Center Room 101
Fred Magdoff
Emeritus Professor of Plant and Soil Science, University of Vermont

4:00 p.m., Roundtable discussion, SCI 1022, Soil and Soil Health
7:30 p.m., Public Talk, JRC 101, Capitalism and Agriculture

Numerous social and ecological problems arise from the way that agriculture functions within capitalist economies. These include hunger in the midst of plenty, lack of nutrient cycling, poor rotations, inhumane raising of animals on factory farms, poor treatment of farm and slaughterhouse labor, and environmental pollution with pesticides and fertilizers. These are outcomes of a system in which the overriding goal and motivating force is profit. In such a system, decisions that makes sense from the narrow economic point, are frequently ecologically and socially irrational.

Fred Magdoff is Emeritus Professor of Plant and Soil Science at the University of Vermont. His interests range from soil science to agriculture and food (science, production, economics, policy) to the environment to the U.S. economy. His science research was on ways to improve the soil fertility, especially focusing on the critical role of soil organic matter. He oriented his agricultural outreach activities to explaining the application of ecological principles to food production. He is the co-author of Building Crops for Better Soil: Sustainable Soil Management and What Every Environmentalist Needs to Know About Capitalism. He is co-editor of Agriculture and Food in Crisis: Conflict, Resistance, and Renewal. Creating an Ecological Society is due out later this year.

Family physician, writer, professor to discuss family farming at Grinnell College

Thursday, March 10, 2016 - 7:30pm to 9:30pm
Joe Rosenfield '25 Center Room 101

Dr. Daphne Miller, a family physician, writer and associate professor of family medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, will discuss “Farmacology: Total Health from the Ground Up” on Thursday, March 10, at Grinnell College.

Her lecture will start at 7:30 p.m. in room 101 of the Joe Rosenfield '25 Center, 1115 Eighth Ave., Grinnell. She will also lead a roundtable discussion about health professions, alternative medicine and diet at 4 p.m., the same day, in room 152 of the Bucksbaum Center for the Arts, 1108 Park St., Grinnell. Both events are free and open to the public.

Miller will use her latest book, "Farmacology: What Innovative Family Farming Can Teach Us About Health and Healing," to frame her discussion of family farms. Her lecture will cover all the aspects of farming—from seed choice to soil management—that have a direct and powerful impact on health.

Bridging the traditional divide between agriculture and medicine, Miller will share lessons learned from inspiring farmers and biomedical researchers as she weaves their insights and discoveries, along with stories from her patients, into the narrative.

A practicing family physician, Miller is also a leading scholar on health ecology. Her writings in the field have been published in The Washington Post, The New York Times, Vogue, Orion Magazine, Yes! Magazine, Food and Wine, The Guardian and Harvard Medical Magazine.

Miller has received numerous honors for her achievements in health ecology, including fellowships at the University of California San Francisco, funded by the National Institute of Health, and at the Berkeley Food Institute. She also serves on the boards of a number of non-profits, including Institute of the Golden Gate, Education Outside, Mandela Marketplace and the Edible Schoolyard Foundation.

Sponsoring this event are the Grinnell College Office of the President, Center for Prairie Studies, Rosenfield Program in Public Affairs, International Relations and Human Rights, Office of Community Enhancement and Engagement, Wellness Program, Chaplain’s Office, Student Environmental Committee and the Student Government Association.