2019 Conference Slideshow
Photos mostly by Trav Williams of Broken Banjo Photography (link is external), with a few provided by BDA staff
(The "full screen" icon can be seen when you hover your mouse in the lower right corner while video is playing, or you can click to watch on YouTube.)
From November 20 to November 24, the Sagamore Resort in the Adirondacks of Upstate New York hosted more than 650 farmers, gardeners, educators, students, activists, entrepreneurs, and others from the region, across the United States, and around the world. The beautiful setting inspired reflection and reverence as a warm and vibrant community coalesced over the course of the five days — engaging, exploring, sharing, questioning, learning, and connecting. Our minds and hearts were opened, our souls and spirits were nourished, and our wills were strengthened to continue the sacred work of stewarding land, growing food, and cultivating relationships with Earth, cosmos, and community.
During our time together in New York, we looked at practical and grounded ways to work with the land and develop co-creative partnerships with our soils, plants, and animals during six field days, intensive pre-conference workshops, and four breakout workshop sessions. Inspired by our experiences at the annual international biodynamic conference in Dornach, Switzerland, we offered new multi-day experiential workshop sessions that built a theme and a community of relationships through three morning sessions, weaving continuity and connection into the diverse offerings of the conference.
We explored how to bring service, reverance, and justice into our farming, gardening, and land stewardship and how to cultivate a living relationship with biodynamics through four inspiring keynotes: "From 'Good Grief' to 'Good Mind': Illuminating the Constellations of Reciprocal Relationship with Land, Self, and Stars" with Stephanie Morningstar and Çaca Yvaire; "Developing Experiential Awareness of the Relatiionship Between the Heavens and Earth" with Michael D'Aleo; "Black Faith Matters: The Spirit Ecology of African Agrarianism" with Leah Penniman; and "Relating within the Being of the Farm Individuality" with Mac Mead, Megan Durney, Alex Tuchman, and Gunther Hauk.
Finally, we celebrated, conversed, and connected through many special events. At the Opening Celebration and Tasting, we enjoyed tastings of cheeses, fruits, breads, soups, juices, meads, ciders, wines, and more from local, organic, and Biodynamic® producers. Morning movement sessions offered opportunities to start the day with eurythmy, qigong, or Spacial Dynamics®. The Josephine Porter Institute offered a wide array of books and calendars that attendees perused in the cozy chairs of the REC Center loft, while exhibitors in the Conference Center offered products, information, and inspiration. Open Space turned the programming over to attendees, giving everyone the chance to host a conversation on any topic or to join in any conversation of their choice. Sidewalk Consulting offered 15-minute sessions to connect and get advice from experts in the field, while informal Fireside Chats (held more comfortably indoors considering the weather!) provided stories of inspiration and innovation from members of the biodynamic community. On Friday, we were transfixed by the dynamic performance of Naima Penniman, followed by the inspiring music of Lady Moon & The Eclipse, while on Saturday we heard from our fellow conference participants during Open Mic Night, shared seeds and information during the Seed Share, and learned about recent research during the Research Poster Session.
We were also pleased this year to partner with Demeter International to host the International Biodynamic Banana Conference in conjunction with our conference. Banana Conference sessions were open to all conference attendees, and the convergence of these two events greatly enriched our conference experience.
We are so grateful to all who contributed to this amazing event in so many ways: our Conference Advisory Committee, Business and Community Partners, farmers and producers, presenters, performers, exhibitors, translators, volunteers, scholarship fund donors, staff, board — and of course the participants themselves, who were the true heart and soul of this event.
We invite you to discover more through the video slideshow above, conference recordings, and the links below. And we hope you can join us next year, November 11-15, when we come together again in Westminster, Colorado!