EXPO 2022

September 30, 2022 - October 2, 2022

Arrowpeak Lodge, Great Falls

JOIN US AT EXPO 2022

Registration is now closed. Thank you to all who joined us at Expo!

Your registration fee covers full access to Expo panels, discussions and activities, as well as farm tours, food and lodging. We offer discounted rates for AERO members, as well as student rates.

Scroll down to see details about this year’s Expo agenda, farm tours, workshops, and more. We will continue to update this page as more information becomes available, and feel free to reach out if you have any questions: [email protected]

Thank you, and we hope to see you at Expo!

With gratitude,

The AERO Team

Looking for the Dan Kittredge Pre-Expo WorkshopFind details here.

2022 KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

Liz Carlisle

AERO is honored to welcome Liz Carlisle back again as keynote speaker. She is the author of Lentil Underground, co-author of Grain By Grain, and Assistant Professor in Environmental Studies at UC Santa Barbara. Liz will be sharing wisdom from her latest book, Healing Grounds: Climate, Justice and the Deep Roots of Regenerative Farming.

Dan Kittredge

Dan Kittredge has been an organic farmer for more than 30 years and is one of the leading 21st century proponents of “nutrient density”. He is founder and Executive Director of the Bionutrient Food Association (BFA), a non-profit whose mission is to build a nutrient dense food supply, recognizing that together, we are stewards of our food future. Dan is also teaching a pre-Expo class, Principles of Biological Systems, the day before Expo. Learn more about the course HERE

We have a wonderful cast of guest speakers and panelists joining us for Expo. To see the bios of all of our presenters, CLICK HERE.

EXPO SCHEDULE & AGENDA

 Cultivating Resiliency

This is our 2022 Expo theme, explored through the lens of “stewardship agriculture”, a catchphrase that captures the culture of stewardship that is the heart of our AERO community. Stewardship of planetary resources, of our communities, and of food producing resources—human, animal, plant, and land. This culture drives our conversations, our questions, and the creative solutions we dream up. Come learn what imaginative pragmatists around the state are doing to cultivate resilient stewardship at all levels. May they inspire new questions and solutions for you!

Tracks & Breakout Sessions
REIMAGINING THE ECONOMY OF STEWARDSHIP AGRICULTURE
  • The Culture of Agriculture: Partnerships for Sharing Risk and Building Value—Creative partnership efforts by producers, nonprofits, and educational institutions
  • Economic Value and Impact of Local Food in Montana—Summary of the Highland Economics report commissioned by the Grow Montana coalition: a look at what’s at stake and policy advocacy in 2023
  • Addressing the Impact of Extractive Ag on Human and Planetary Health—A look at current efforts from a variety of perspectives
  • Shifting Perspectives for a Resilient Mind—Expanding the lens for sustainable solutions
FOOD SOVEREIGNTY AND FOOD CULTURE
  • The Culture of Food: Sharing Stories to Shift the Narrative—Why our food stories matter and new tools for sharing them
  • Indigenous Food Sovereignty and Wellness—Grassroots efforts for rebuilding food sovereignty in Indian Country
  • Using Story to Unpack Racial Inequity in the Food System—Exploring the personal process of unpacking racial inequity in the food system through story
ACCESS ROUTES TO SUSTAINABLE STEWARDSHIP
  • New Ways of Accessing Financial Capital—A look at creative financial resources for purpose-driven food and farming businesses
  • Supporting Producer Land Access—Individual and community approaches to producer land access
  • Creative Models for Building Consumer and Community Engagement—Reports from community, regional, and international models in action
  • Farm Staff Housing—Making it affordable, making it sustainable

 

Daily Schedule
Friday, September 30th

During the day, choose from one of our Farm Tours & Local Lunch options (see below) or complete Dan Kittredge’s workshop on Principles of Biological Systems (not included in cost of Expo), which starts Thursday Sept 29, and ends at noon on Friday – in time to join Tour 4 at Ole Norgaard’s farm. Check in at Arrowpeak Lodge anytime between 12:00-5:00pm.

Evening Festivities:

4:30-5:30pm —Happy Hours & Appetizers from Saibeen’s Kitchen

5:45pm—Evening Keynote: Liz Carlisle

7:00-9:00pm—Potluck Dinner and AERO Cake Auction*

*Yum! It’s tradition to bring a dish to share for the potluck. Showcase your creativity and bake a killer cake for the Cake Auction! In all events, bring your cash. The stakes are high in this staple AERO FUNdraiser, with the highest bidding table getting first choice of cake!

Saturday, October 1st

7:00-8:00am—Sunrise yoga with Ellie Costello

7:30-8:30am—Breakfast & Registration

9:00am—Morning Keynote: Dan Kittredge

10:30am—Breakout Session #1

12:00pm—Lunch

1:15pm—AERO Annual Meeting

2:45pm—Breakout Session #2

4:15pm—Breakout Session #3 and Value-Added Producer Workshop

Evening Festivities:

7:00-8:00pm—Dinner and Silent Auction Winners

8:00-10:00pm—Live music by State Champions!

Sunday, October 2nd

7:00-8:00am—Sunrise yoga with Ellie Costello

7:30-8:30am—Coffee chats

7:00-8:45am—Breakfast

9:00am—Breakout Session #4

10:30am—Closing

11am—Expo ends

FARM TOURS & LOCAL LUNCHES

With our last two Expo’s taking place virtually, we have really missed the field component that is traditionally a part of Expo. This year we are back, and we have four excellent tours to choose from! Tours are FREE with Expo registration. All tours will take place on Friday, September 30th. Select the tour of your choice when you purchase your Expo ticket.

Tour 1: BRIDGING THE RURAL-URBAN DIVIDE (Lunch Tour)

11:00am-1:00pm, Helena, MT

Old Salt Co-Op is building a Montana meat brand that is about “connecting customers and producers in a shared purpose: to be stewards, enhancing land, wildlife habitat and community like a pinch of salt in a recipe, like the salt of the earth.” Join us at the Old Salt Outpost in Helena’s historic downtown for delicious burgers and conversation around connecting to Montana’s working landscapes. (Tour participants are responsible for the cost of their own meal at Old Salt Outpost.)

 

Tour 2: THE PRAIRIE TOUR

10:00am-3:30pm, Lewistown & Stanford, MT

Meet in Lewistown at the American Prairie Reserve Center to chat about the buffalo/prairie ecosystem with Liz Carlisle, Latrice Tatsey (bison ecologist currently restoring buffalo to their native homelands in the Blackfeet Nation), and Corrie Williamson, former AERO staffer, now Senior Outreach Manager for American Prairie. Then to Jess Alger’s ranch in Stanford. A former AERO Board member and keen supporter from way back, Jess Alger has been a Montana leader in regenerative ranching and agriculture practices since 1999 when he transitioned his 1,120 acre farm/ranch to organic. (Please bring $ for lunch from Rising Trout Cafe or bring a sack lunch.)

Tour 3: FOOD FOR THE PEOPLE

11:00am-3:30pm, Ulm & Highwood, MT

Start at Timeless Seeds in Ulm—a must if you want to understand the history, legacy, and opportunity of stewardship agriculture in Montana today. Then head to Ole Norgaard’s organic and biodynamic North Frontier Farms. Learn about the Canadian Thistle biocontrol project with MSU, the innovative grain seed cleaner for small and large-scale farmers, and the story of bringing to market Dave Christiansen’s Montana Morado Maize, a unique cold and drought tolerant anthocyanin-rich purple/black corn. (Bring a sack lunch or grab it to go at Harvest Craft Kitchen in Great Falls.)

Tour 4: FOOD CULTURE SNAPSHOT (Lunch Tour)

-CANCELLED-

This tour has been cancelled. If you already registered for this tour you will be contacted by AERO to make other arrangements. Thank you for your understanding.

DETAILS & LOGISTICS

Lodging and Accomodations

Lodging is included in the cost of your Expo registration.

Arrowpeak Lodge sits on 144-acres in the beautiful Highwood Mountains 40 miles east of Great Falls. With a main lodge and four large outbuildings, it’s perfect for kindling the small group conversations and impromptu collaborations that distinguish the Expo experience.

On-site accommodations include dormitories, individual rooms and cabins, and tent & RV camping. Shower House available for campers. Lodging is limited and can be reserved when you register on our website.

Off-site accommodations are also available in Fort Benton (Franklin St. Guest House, The River House, Grand Union Hotel, Pioneer Lodge), and in Great Falls. 

Meals and Potlucks

Meals are included in the cost of your Expo registration.

Friday night’s dinner will be a potluck, so please bring a dish to share. We also will have our AERO Cake Auction, a beloved tradition that puts the FUN in fundraiser! Show off your baking chops and bring a show-stopping cake to contribute!

All other meals will be provided, catered by Bomgardner Catering. We will endeavor to meet everybody’s dietary needs and preferences, and you can indicate any dietary needs during registration.

 

Silent Auction

Saturday night will include a Silent Auction, and we welcome your contributions to this annual fundraising event!

No gift is too small or too big. Whether it is a cherished book, a product from your business, dinner for two at a local restaurant, or a guided float down a wild Montana river, we celebrate the generosity of our AERO community.

Let us know what you plan to add to the Auction when you register online. Thank you!

Harvest Market Tables

Share about your organization or business by getting a booth at our Harvest Market, or tabling space! AERO invites you to promote your work or products. You can reserve a Harvest Market table when you register for Expo. $25/table 

Directions to Arrowpeak Lodge

Arrowpeak Lodge is located 40 miles east of Great Falls. You can find directions to the Montana Farmers Union camp from Great Falls or from Billings HERE.

Questions?

Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions about Expo or Dan Kittredge’s Workshop on Principles of Biological Systems. We are happy to help!

Contact Gillian at [email protected].

Many Thanks to Our Sponsors

Give a round of applause for this year’s Expo sponsors! We couldn’t do this without your generous support. Many thanks to the following organizations and businesses who have pledged to make this Expo a success. You can become an Expo sponsor, too! Learn more HERE

American Prairie

Kamut International

Mission West Community Development Partners/Mission Mountain Food Enterprise Center

Community Food and Agriculture Coalition (CFAC)

Montana Organic Association

Montana Renewable Energy Association

Blue Truck Bread

O’Hara Commons and Sustainability Center

North Fork Financial

NCAT (National Center for Appropriate Technology)

Grow Montana Food Policy Coalition

Barnstormers (Cafe Mam Coffee)

Montana Farmers Union

Complex Systems Institute

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)

Old Salt Co-op

Good Food Store

maxwell milton

Happy Trash Can

Alternative Energy Resources Organization

Mailing address: PO Box 1558, Helena MT 59624

Physical address: 32 S Ewing St #333, Helena MT 59601