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New year, new activities with Transition Tallahassee

It’s 2014, and Transition Tallahassee is on the move! Last year, we hosted our first World Cafe community discussion, which featured presentations by six local environmental groups and had over 50 participants in attendance. The World Cafe also featured a performance by the Trashtronauts using upcycled instruments, and a presentation by local author & environmental [...]

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Third Seed Swap this Sunday at Bread & Roses Food Co-op

It’s that time again! Time to plant a fall garden! This year, plant a few seeds given to you by friends and community members at the Fall 2013 Seed Swap, hosted by Transition Tallahassee and Tallahassee Sustainability Group. The seed swap takes place this Sunday, October 13th, 2013 from 2-4pm at Bread & Roses Food [...]

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Gasland II Screening at IMAX Theater on Oct 6th

Transition Tallahassee is teaming up with several local environmental and social justice organizations to host a screening of Gasland II, a film about the dangers of fracking, on Sunday, October 6th at 3:00pm at the local IMAX theatre. The film will be followed by a discussion with Joe Mule, President of Preserve Our Paradise, the [...]

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New year, new activities with Transition Tallahassee

It’s 2014, and Transition Tallahassee is on the move!

Last year, we hosted our first World Cafe community discussion, which featured presentations by six local environmental groups and had over 50 participants in attendance. The World Cafe also featured a performance by the Trashtronauts using upcycled instruments, and a presentation by local author & environmental activist Susan Cerulean. Look for a synopsis of the presentations and the projects that are coming out of them by our steering group member Mary Marcous, coming soon.

We also hosted our monthly film screenings with the UU Church and a coalition of local environmental groups, in addition to screenings of Gasland I and Gasland II with a coalition of environmental and social justice groups. Our members have been active in the campaign to label genetically engineered foods in Florida, and the fossil fuel divestment campaign as well.

2013 also contained several reskilling workshops hosted by Transition Tallahassee, including a wild foraging walk that was led by Aimee Leteux and featured as part of 7 Days of Local Delights, a week of events sponsored by the Red Hills Small Farm Alliance. Last, we hosted a Time Banking/Skill Share interest meeting, that was featured as part of the New Economy course taught through the IFAS Extension Center by Will Sheftall.

This year, we are moving forward with our dreams of starting a time & skill share in Tallahassee. At our January meeting, we compiled a list of skills held by our active members, as well as skills we would like to learn. Future plans include more skill workshops that are taught by Transition members, as well as skill workshops taught by community members with skills that our group members want to learn. We also plan to transcribe the list of skills we compiled onto a page on our website so that members can easily access and refer to it. The next step will be employing a social networking software to make this online skill exchange interactive, with participants able to create profiles and set up skill exchanges through the site.

Our member Jim Ball is also eagerly planning a “peak-oil simulation,” which will be an event in which participants are presented with peak oil scenarios and asked to respond to them and create solutions. The event should function something like a “choose-your-own-adventure” book. For more info about this, talk to Jim!

And, our first monthly film screening of this year was a huge success! We showed the film “Fixing the Future,” and Jim led a great discussion after the film. The next film is “Urban Roots,” a film about the urban farming movement, on Feb 23rd from 4-6pm at the UU Church.

Film screenings are always the 4th Sunday of the month from 4-6pm at the UU Church (2810 N Meridian Rd), refreshments provided (every now and then we take a month off due to holidays and such, so be sure to check the schedule under the ‘Events’ tab). Transition Tallahassee meetings are every 2nd Monday of the month from 6:30-8:00pm at the Oasis Center for Women & Girls (317 E Call St), refreshments provided. For more info, contact us at: transition.tallahassee@gmail.com!

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Third Seed Swap this Sunday at Bread & Roses Food Co-op

It’s that time again! Time to plant a fall garden! This year, plant a few seeds given to you by friends and community members at the Fall 2013 Seed Swap, hosted by Transition Tallahassee and Tallahassee Sustainability Group. The seed swap takes place this Sunday, October 13th, 2013 from 2-4pm at Bread & Roses Food Cooperative (915 Railroad Ave).

Community members are encouraged to bring seeds to trade, or simply attend and collect seeds with which to start a garden. Seeds do not need to be heirloom or organic, nor do they need to have been saved by the person bringing them. Seed envelopes, labels, pens and table space for displaying seeds will be provided. Those bringing seeds are asked to arrive 15 minutes early to set-up, and to be prepared to answer questions regarding the variety, year saved, and planting instructions for their seeds.

The seed swap will include a light meal featuring organic produce from local farms, and a presentation on seed saving by Louise Divine, owner of Turkey Hill Farm and founder of Red Hills Small Farm Alliance.

There is a suggested donation of $2 or more to help cover the event cost.

If you are interested in volunteering at this event, please contact: transition.tallahassee@gmail.com.

Visit the Facebook event for the seed swap HERE.

Fall 2013 Seed Swap

Gasland II Screening at IMAX Theater on Oct 6th

Transition Tallahassee is teaming up with several local environmental and social justice organizations to host a screening of Gasland II, a film about the dangers of fracking, on Sunday, October 6th at 3:00pm at the local IMAX theatre. The film will be followed by a discussion with Joe Mule, President of Preserve Our Paradise, the Naples organization working to stop fracking in Collier County.

Florida is facing the immediate threat of fracking in Collier County, which contains Naples and Immokalee. Many residents near the proposed drilling site get their drinking water from wells, and the site is also nearby the Florida Everglades, Big Cypress National Preserve, Picayune Strand State Forest, and Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge. We need to stand up as Floridians so that a precedent of fracking in our state is not established, and say, “Don’t Frack Florida!”

For more information:
http://preserveourparadise.org/
http://www.foodandwaterwatch.org/water/fracking/fracking-action-center/

Attendees will have the opportunity to sign a petition to nationally ban fracking from Food & Water Watch, as well as speak with Tallahassee activists working on a bill to ban fracking statewide.

Gasland II, which premiered at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival, shows how the stakes have been raised on all sides in one of the most important environmental issues facing our nation today. The film argues that the gas industry’s portrayal of natural gas as a clean and safe alternative to oil is a myth and that fracked wells inevitably leak over time, contaminating water and air, hurting families, and endangering the earth’s climate with the potent greenhouse gas, methane. In addition the film looks at how the powerful oil and gas industries are in director Josh Fox’s words “contaminating our democracy”.

Watch the trailer here:
http://www.gaslandthemovie.com/about-the-film

This event is free and open to the public, however, donations are warmly appreciated.

Co-sponsors:
Florida Physicians for Social Responsibility
Florida Food & Water Watch
Florida League of Conservation Voters
ReThink Energy Florida
Transition Tallahassee
Sustainable Tallahassee
Big Bend Sierra Club
Tallahassee Citizens’ Climate Lobby
Tallahassee Freethinkers
Tallahassee Sustainability Group
UUCT Green Sanctuary
FAMU Green Coalition
FSU Environmental Service Program
Teens Turning Green

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World Cafe Update

Transition Tallahassee and Tallahassee Sustainability Group are hosting a community discussion forum known as a World Cafe on Sunday, Sept 8th, 2013 from 1:30-4:00pm at the FSU Center for Global Engagement (110 S. Woodward Ave).

Although on FSU’s campus, the FSU Center for Global Engagement is very easy to access from off-campus. All you need to do is head north on S. Woodward Ave. from south of FSU campus on, say, Jefferson St. or Pensacola St. Once you pass Jefferson, the location will be soon on your left. There is a parking garage that is very convenient to the location. Just continue north on S. Woodward Ave. after passing the building on your left. Very soon, the road will curve to the right, and the parking garage will be on your left (the parking garage is visible from the event location). Get directions HERE.

The World Cafe will feature free refreshments and coffee, a live music performance from the Trashtronauts, a band that plays instruments made of recycled materials, and a guest presentation by local author, naturalist, and activist Susan Cerulean. The event is free and open to the public. Donations to help cover the event cost are appreciated, but by no means required.

Then, we’ve got five great breakout discussions on how to make the transition off of fossil fuels and towards a strong, resilient local economy. Members of Sustainable Tallahassee will be giving a presentation on starting local solar cooperatives. Folks from Tallahassee Food Network and Tallahassee Sustainability Group will be leading a workshop on building the local food economy. Martha Lang, Soil and Water Supervisor, and others will be facilitating a workshop on fossil fuel divestment and local reinvestment. Transition Tallahassee and Will Sheftall from the Extension Center are leading a workshop on the new economy and time banking, and David Brightbill, co-founder of Making Awesome makerspace, will be facilitating a workshop on building a local maker economy.

For updates and World Cafe schedule, please check out the Facebook event HERE.

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Get ready for the World Cafe!

Transition Tallahassee and Tallahassee Sustainability Group are hosting a community discussion forum known as a World Cafe on Sunday, September 8th, from 1:30-4:00pm in the FSU Center for Global Engagement auditorium (110 S. Woodward Ave). A World Cafe is a discussion process that aims to address a central question by breaking out into smaller groups that each address a smaller facet of the question, and then reconvening and reporting back to the larger group.

The central question of this World Cafe will be:
How can we best make the transition away from the fossil fuel economy and towards a re-localized, resilient, and tight-knit Tallahassee community?

We are collecting proposals for breakout discussion topics in advance of the World Cafe event, and choosing 6 topics out of all the proposals submitted. We’ve already received proposals on the topics of creating a local time bank, building a local maker economy, and working to pass a GMO labeling law.

We’re also excited to have the event facilitated by Martha Lang, Soil & Water Conservation Supervisor, Seat 1, and to start the event off with a guest presentation by Susan Cerulean, local nature writer and environmental advocate.

The World Cafe event schedule will be as follows:

1:30-2:00 Hors d’oeuvres, coffee, and socializing
2:00-2:10 Introduction to World Cafe concept by Martha Lang, Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisor, Seat 1
2:10-2:30 Opening thoughts by Susan Cerulean, local nature writer
2:30-2:35 Introduction of World Cafe breakout facilitators, breakout topics, & process by Martha Lang
2:35-3:35 Breakout discussions
3:35-3:55 Reportbacks by breakout groups
3:55-4:00 Closing remarks by Martha Lang
4:00-4:30 Socializing/Post-event discussion with breakout facilitators

If you would like to host a breakout discussion, please send a detailed description of your topic, how it addresses the central question, and the name and your contact information (phone & e-mail) to transition.tallahassee@gmail.com, preferably by August 19th at 5pm. You will be notified by Wednesday, August 21st if your topic was chosen.

We hope to see you at the World Cafe on September 8th!

Summer with Transition Tallahassee

Hello everyone,

Today is July 27th, and we’ve just had a very successful screening of Gasland I at All Saints Cinema. The theater was packed, and unfortunately several people had to be turned away. However, Transition Tallahassee and other local environmental organizations who hosted this screening, such as Physicians for Social Responsibility, are planning to show Gasland II in a larger venue as soon as the film license becomes available.

Following the film, we had a discussion panel consisting of Gwen Graham, candidate in Florida’s 2nd congressional district, Steve Masterson, former executive director of Florida Academy of Trial Lawyers, and Kim Ross, director of ReThink Energy Florida. We gathered 39 signatures for Food & Water Watch’s petition to ban fracking nationwide, and will continue to collect signatures. Additionally, 350 North Florida is drafting a Florida constitutional amendment to ban fracking statewide, and will begin to gather signatures to place the amendment on the ballot soon.

Fracking is a dangerous method of mining for natural gas in which a fracking fluid containing toxic chemicals is injected into the ground to fracture rock surrounding a gas well, releasing natural gas trapped in the rock. The toxic chemicals in the fracking fluid, often undisclosed and protected as trade secrets, as well as the gas itself, leech into local water, air, and soil, and have been known to cause health problems such as cancer, asthma, birth defects, and brain damage.

Transition Tallahassee also hosted a Gasland II house party on July 8th. Many Transition members, as well as some new faces, got together at steering group member Martha Lang’s house to watch the premiere of Gasland II on HBO.

For more information on fracking, visit Food & Water Watch: http://www.foodandwaterwatch.org/water/fracking/.

Earlier in the evening on July 8th, at Transition’s July meeting, we gathered and recorded our member’s visions for the future of Tallahassee to report to the new local organization Imagine Tallahassee. We submitted our input to Imagine, letting them know we look forward to a Tallahassee that is sustainable, resilient, and ready to stand up to the inevitable shocks that will come with peak oil and climate change.

Many Transition members also attended a rally on May 25th at the Florida capitol that took place as part of the international March Against Monsanto movement. The rally had an attendance of over 100 people, and we heard from speakers including Nathan Ballantine, the Man-in-Overalls and organizer with the iGrow youth garden on Dunn St, Simon Bevis, garden manager with the Salvation Army Garden on Jackson Bluff Rd, Priscilla Hudson, local master gardener and beekeeper, and Farmer Herman Holly from Turkey Hill Farm.

The rally speakers and sign-waving attendees shared their hopes for a strong, resilient local food system free of GMO’s and interference from large, profit-driven corporations such as Monsanto. Speakers touched on negative health effects caused by GMO’s, economic harms to small farmers caused by dependence on GMO seed and expensive herbicide inputs, and the people-powered, grassroots movement needed to address these issues.

Going further back, March and April each contained wild edible foraging walks hosted by Transition, as well as screenings of “End of Suburbia” in March, and “Anima Mundi” in April. Transition also hosted an Herbal Medicine Workshop with Frankie Messier at Wild Greens Cafe in April, and tabled at the 2013 Tomato Feastival at Turkey Hill Farm, and the 2nd annual Energy Ball hosted by ReThink Energy Florida.

Coming up soon, Transition Tallahassee will be hosting a World Cafe community discussion forum on Sunday, September 8th, from 2-4pm in the FSU Center for Global Engagement auditorium. The topic of discussion will be, “How can we best transition to a resilient, relocalized, and peak-oil-ready Tallahassee community?” The World Cafe will be facilitated by Martha Lang, Soil & Water Conservation Supervisor, Seat 1, and will feature Susan Cerulean, local nature writer, as a motivational speaker.

Please join us for our next general meeting, August 12th at 6:30PM at the Oasis Center for Women & Girls (317 E Call St). Learn how you can get involved in the local effort to build a strong, resilient Tallahassee community!

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Past week of great events, March meeting next week

This past week was chock full of awesome events Transition Tallahassee has hosted along with several local organizations.

On Sunday, February 24th, Transition hosted a screening of Blue Gold, a documentary about how our current economy structures the use of the world’s water supply. Privatization of water, pollution, and piping and shipping water from one region to another all contribute to localized shortages of potable water and water conflicts that follow. Water is a precious resource that although renewable, can be exhausted if we use it unsustainably or pollute it.

For more information and a film trailer, see: http://www.bluegold-worldwaterwars.com/. The film was followed by a great discussion that touched on several local watershed issues, and afterward we went out to eat together!

The next day, Monday, February 25th, we held our Wild Root Beer Making Workshop with Scott Davis, Field Trip Coordinator for the local chapter of Florida Native Plant Society. Scott provided three different root beer recipes, and brought several examples of local edible plants and roots to show us. We made two batches of sassafras root beer from locally harvested wild sassafras. We all got to taste the root beer, and many took home root beer, syrup, and yaupon holly leaves to caffeinate their homemade beverages.

This past Sunday, Transition hosted our second seasonal seed swap at Bread and Roses Food Cooperative/Wild Greens Community Cafe. Many local gardeners showed up to swap seeds, and new gardeners came to receive seeds from those who had already gotten started. We had a presentation from Simon Bevis, Garden Manager at Salvation Army Garden, on his trip to the Iowa Seed Savers’ Exchange, with info on plant breeding and saving seed.

The Ekanlaunee Seed Exchange was also present with surveys regarding a new local seed bank, and Sue Hansen read an inspiring poem she wrote entitled “Requiem for Mother Earth.” To top it off, there was delicious food made from Salvation Army Garden produce, and seeds for sale at Bread and Roses from Southern Exposure Seed Exchange!

Further back in February, we also hosted local Creek and Cherokee elders and organic farmers Susan Anderson and Roy Stanley to speak. They shared with us their ethics around sense of place and caring for the land where we live. They also passed around a sign-up sheet for volunteering at their farm, and with the Wisdom Keepers Project, helping to archive recorded interviews with native elders from around the world.

We hope local community members will also join us for our March general meeting on Monday, March 11th from 6:30-8:00PM at the Oasis Center for Women & Girls (317 E Call St). Come out and meet folks like you who care about our land and community, and understand that the way we are living must change fundamentally and fast in order to re-create a healthy, resilient way of life. We’ll be talking about outreach efforts such as tabling and Transition talks, and discussing our plans for a World Cafe community discussion event. All are welcome and encouraged to attend, with friends! Refreshments will be provided!

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Spring Seed Swap on March 3rd

This March 3rd from 2-4PM at Bread and Roses Food Cooperative/Wild Greens Community Cafe (915 Railroad Ave), Transition Tallahassee will be co-sponsoring Tallahassee’s second seasonal seed swap with Tallahassee Sustainability Group and Bread and Roses Food Co-op.

Gardeners of all experience levels are encouraged to save and bring seeds to share, but this is not required. If you’re interested in gardening but haven’t gotten started yet, feel free to come and pick up seeds to get going.  There will be plenty of seeds to go around!  It will also be helpful to bring envelopes and markers for storing and labeling seeds you take home.

The event will begin with a presentation on the Iowa Seed Savers’ Exchange by Simon Bevis. There will be a $2 cover that will go toward event expenses, and remaining funds raised will go to Bread & Roses Food Cooperative. A light meal will be provided.

The goal of our seasonal seed swaps is to encourage a community of seed savers who help to create genetic varieties that are adapted to our local bioregion and have desirable traits like good flavor, as opposed to being shippable and having long shelf lives, like many varieties bred for industrial agriculture.

For more information, contact: transition.tallahassee@gmail.com.

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Wild Root Beer Making Workshop on February 25th

In late February, Transition Tallahassee will be teaming up with the Magnolia chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society, Bread and Roses Food Cooperative, and Wild Greens Community Cafe, to bring you a Wild Root Beer Making Workshop!

This workshop will teach how to make root beer using wild plant roots that grow all around us, such as sassafras, dandelion, and bull briar. Our previous wild foraging walk focused on gathering wild roots that are the mainstay of the winter season. Now, learn how to process these roots into a delicious root beer, and taste our concoction when the workshop is done!

This workshop will be facilitated by Scott Davis, Board of Directors Representative for the local chapter of Florida Native Plant Society, and knowledgeable facilitator of our recurring foraging walks.  The workshop takes place on Monday, February 25th, 2013, from 6-8PM in the kitchen at Wild Greens Community Cafe/Bread and Roses Food Cooperative (915 Railroad Ave).

Materials provided. Free to the public, but donations always appreciated!  For more information, contact: transition.tallahassee@gmail.com.

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The Spirit of the Land is Red public lecture February 6th

Transition Tallahassee, along with the FSU Center for Participant Education and the FSU American Indian Student Union, will be hosting Susan Anderson and Roy Stanley, two local elders in Creek and Cherokee ceremonial communities, to give a public presentation on Wednesday, February 6th, 2013, from 7-8PM in the FSU Center for Global Engagement (110 S. Woodward Ave), Room L.

Join Susan and Roy for a discussion on how their stories, cosmology and worldview inform their land ethic and enable them to maintain cultural and environmental sustainability in their contemporary lives. The presentation will focus on the practical application of deep values that create order, balance, harmony and peace with Mother Earth in the face of 21st century chaos and boundless consumption. Susan and Roy will discuss their understanding of natural law and speculate with you on how a better understanding of these values may give you food for thought as you fashion your own sustainability practices and values to live as one earth family in this place at this time.

The presentation is free, although donations are appreciated.  For more information, please contact: transition.tallahassee@gmail.com.

Spirit of the Land