Bringing Permaculture to Our Communities Workshop

Join us this summer, over two weekends, from July 30-31st and August 6-7, 2020.
Bringing Permaculture to Our Community: A Workshop for mentors, educators, and facilitators is presented by Northern Michigan Permaculture and hosted by Commonplace, a community innovation hub and co-working space in Traverse City, which is just a very, few blocks away from Grand Traverse Bay in the unceded Anishinaabe territory of Northwest Michigan’s lower peninsula.

“Bringing Permaculture to our Communities” is a 4-day on-line opportunity to engage in a nature-based approach to learning, sharing, teaching, mentoring and examining and practicing anti-oppression work through the theme and topics connected to permaculture design.

~This is not just about or for BIG people, although most of us attending will be considered adults. We will definitely be looking at educational approaches and how children are transformative change agents in our culture and society.

~ We will be sitting together in Zoom-like circle fashion, examining both our generational experience and youth relationships with nature and what permaculture design offers us in the big wide world.

~We will co-create a healthy info-sharing space with the basics of our long-time experience in permaculture design blended with our real life experiences.

~We will take time to explore opportunities that can involve children and youth in permaculture activities, through: Practice, Design, and Information Share.

~We will build a wonderful, just the right size community of open-minded and hearted people who are interested in how educational opportunities and a permaculture pedagogy are presented and practiced.

~We will honor and recognize the NOW and the opportunity to learn more about permaculture design, mentoring, education, and engaging children in permaculture while practicing anti-oppression and anti-racism.

~And we will knuckle down and make a sincere vow to create an experience that fosters ongoing support through use of in-person and/or an online networking group and ways to instigate a permaculture learning network in your region, community and neighborhoods.

Each day will begin at 8:30 am until 5:00 pm.

This Four-Day training is based on several excellent published resources, along with a teaching team that has 20+ years of hands-on teaching experiences. We are pleased to bring longtime permaculture designers/mentors/educators to hear your stories; support your teaching and mentoring and to share their experiences: Rhonda Baird and Penny Krebiehl are joined by Kate Heiber-Cobb. All three women on this facilitation team have lived, worked and devoted themselves to learning and sharing through art, environmental education and social justice–including permaculture design–the midwest their entire lives.

We are offering this training to a maximum of 20 people, 18 years and older. $100 of the registration will be retained as a non-refundable deposit towards the workshop. No one will be turned away for lack of funds. Contact the organizers with your request/needs. Registrations will be accepted through July 23, 2020 (one week prior to Day 1 of this workshop).

Expect FULL days and plan to arrive on time and dig deep!

Here is the daily schedule/pattern, beginning @ 8:30 am until 5:00 pm.

8:30 am–room opens

9:00 am – morning session

10:30 am – long working break

11:30 am debrief

12-1 lunch–room open

1-2 – afternoon session

2-2:30 project time


3-3:15 break

3:15-4 second afternoon session

4-4:30 breakout or project

4:30 check-outs

We will send out the final daily workshop outline with descriptions of the sessions once you have registered and we have contact information. Please reach out to us if you have questions or need more information before your register.

While this “workshop” opportunity is loosely cloaked in the mode of a “training” and our theme/topics are centralizing around permaculture design education, it’s going to be SO MUCH MORE than what we’ve shared in any of these announcements or invitations. We began planning for this workshop at the end of 2019, and it has gone through many revisions, and morphing changes since we first announced it in January!

Permaculture Educator and Mentoring Team:

Rhonda Baird

Rhonda grew up gardening and foraging in Indiana. She is passionate about redirecting efforts from extractive practices toward skills that foster resilience and nurture life. To that end, she engaged in community organizing and non-profit work for 25 years, and came to teaching permaculture design in 2005. She co-originated the Bloomington Permaculture Guild, the Great Rivers & Lakes Permaculture Institute, and supports groups doing the good work in the Bloomington, Indiana region and beyond. She is a Field Advisor for PINA, leader of the permaculture circle in Sociocracy for All, and is the senior editor of Permaculture Design magazine (formerly Permaculture Activist). She maintains a design practice through Sheltering Hills Design.


Penny Krebiehl

Penny has been sharing/educating through permaculture design since 2005, and is a graphic-recorder for courses and presentations, through the Mid-west & USA. Penny is a life-long Michigan garden-farmer, woods-wanderer, and arts educator. She is the founder of Northern Michigan Permaculture, a Co-Originator of Great Rivers and Lakes Permaculture Institute, a Certified Permaculture Designer and Instructor. As the originator of O’k CSA Cooperative, building a neighborhood, community gardening system in Traverse City, since 2004, she continues to serve the community and region. Penny’s work is focused through Northern Michigan Permaculture, O’k Art & Design and the educational non-profit, Little Artshram.

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