Take your 2021 Homesteaders of America Conference experience to the next level! Learn new self-sufficiency and homesteading skills from experts in their field when you attend our Hands-On Workshops!


Basics of Homestead Fermenting

Off-Grid with Doug & Stacy

The Essential Family Cow

Shawn & Beth Dougherty


Homestead Carpentry

Jason Contreras

Beginner Beekeeping

Kaylee Richardson



2021 Hands-On Workshop Details

General Workshop Details

Workshops happen RAIN OR SHINE!

Your teacher will be in touch with you a week or two before your workshop to let you know what you need to bring along with any other information you may need to know before the workshop.

THESE WORKSHOPS DO NOT TAKE PLACE DURING THE CONFERENCE!

They are pre-conference workshops that take place on Thursday, October 7th, the day BEFORE the conference. Classes begin a 9AM. Lunch break will be at noon. You can pack a lunch or food will be available on the fairgrounds.

Payment Details

Please note that these workshops are separate from conference tickets. You will need to purchase conference tickets separately. 

Workshops are NON-REFUNDABLE, so please be kind to other students that might be interested and make sure you can attend! 

2021 WORKSHOPS LINE-UP

Here are the workshops that will be available on THURSDAY OCTOBER 7th, the Thursday before the conference.

>> CAREFULLY READ THE WORKSHOP DESCRIPTIONS BEFORE PURCHASING YOUR TICKET.


Canning & Preserving 101

Ann Accetta-Scott

Author, Farm Girl’s Guide to Preserving the Harvest

Learn how to effectively and safely preserve foods through pressure and water bath canning. Prior to beginning you must first need to understand the guidelines needed to make canned goods shelf stable. Experience the canning process under the watch and care of a certified master food preserver. In addition to canning, learn of other methods used to store foods long-term. Fermentation, curing, drying, and selecting the best crops for fresh storage.

Does this sound like you? Do you want to try your hand at canning, but with all of the safety concerns, you seek someone to walk you through the steps and give you the confidence that what you’re doing is right? Then you need our Pressure and Water Bath Canning Workshop! Author of The Farm Girl’s Guide to Preserving the Harvest, Ann Accetta-Scott, will be teaching you the step-by-step methods to safely preserve the harvest long-term. Participants will be taking the foods preserved in this hands-on course home to enjoy during the winter months! 

Class participants will also have the opportunity to purchase a copy of Ann’s book at wholesale cost and her Sustainable Canning Course at a great discount to help guide you through the process once you get home!

  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Date: Thursday, October 7th, 2021
  • Class Size: Unlimited
  • Cost: $175/individual or $300/couple (COUPLES: USE COUPON CODE “CANNING2021” FOR DISCOUNT)

Your Homestead Business Blueprint

Jill Winger

The Prairie Homestead

In this workshop, we’ll build a roadmap for exactly where you want to take your homestead or farm business. No more shooting in the dark or feeling like you’re always operating in reactionary mode and one step behind your competitors— you’ll now have your own game plan you can follow with confidence. Together, we’ll create the foundations of a profitable business— whether you currently have an established business or are planning to start one in the future. 

This workshop will cover:

  • How to create effective and targeted messaging that will enable you to speak directly to your dream customers and keep them coming back for more
  • How to create an endless flow of ideas and product concepts for your business 
  • How to build offers and product packages that maximize your sales (and thrill your customers)
  • Online strategies for organic marketing that feel authentic to you (and never “salesy”)
  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Class Size: 30
  • Materials to Bring: Pen & Paper
  • Materials Provided: Handouts & Worksheets
  • Cost: $180

Grow a Year’s Worth of Vegetables, Fruits and Herbs in Your BackYard

Melissa K. Norris

Pioneering Today

Is growing a YEAR-ROUND SUPPLY OF FOOD one of your gardening goals? ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Join Melissa to learn how to customize a growth plan for your fruit, vegetable, and herbal production on your homestead. You’ll come away with a personalized plan to grow a year’s worth of food based on your family’s eating habits and climate.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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She will walk you through how to analyze your property and yard for the best placements of your crops to get the maximum harvest, based on harnessing the four major microclimates almost every backyard has. You’ll get Melissa’s top 4 secrets to increasing your fruit and vegetable production without spending hours on end or increasing your gardening space. Learn about planning and optimizing an orchard and/or berry bushes, even if you don’t have a lot of property or aren’t on your permanent location.

  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Class Size: Unlimited
  • Materials to Bring: A notebook and pencil
  • Cost: $115

The Basics of Homestead Fermenting

Doug & Stacy

Off-Grid with Doug & Stacy

Join Doug & Stacy as they walk you through the ancient art of food preservation known as fermentation. Not only does fermentation help enhance food preservation from season to season, it can increase availability of vitamins and minerals for our bodies to absorb, and boost beneficial bacteria in your digestive tract. These foods are what have helped people survive and thrive throughout history. In this workshop, you will learn how to turn your diet into a probiotic powerhouse.

What you will be  learning:

  • How the fermenting process works
  • Common fermenting mistakes and how to deal with them
  • Learn hands-on and step-by-step  techniques of making a variety of ferments including salsa, condiments, sauerkraut, dilly beans, spicy carrots, kombucha, and lots more.
  • You will make 3 ferments to take home with you along with lots of tasty recipes and confidence to add a bit of ferment into your life
  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Class Size: 30
  • Materials to Bring: 3 pint size mason jars with rings and flats; Paper and pen if you want to take notes
  • Materials Provided: 3 mason tops fermenting pucks and fermenting lids
  • Cost: $170

The Essential Family Cow: Heart of the Homestead

Shawn & Beth Dougherty

Authors, The Independent Farmstead

Can’t make up your mind about a dairy cow? This all-day workshop will amaze you with how dairy fits into your life and your homestead.  Find out how affordable and manageable a dairy cow can be with year-round grazing (no grain feeds), relaxed milking schedules, and simple hand-milking equipment.  Even just a few acres can support a family cow!  Shawn and Beth Dougherty, veteran homesteaders of 30 years, share the essentials of selecting and buying a cow, basic rotational grazing, milking, breeding, calf rearing, and Magical Milk Management — leveraging milk to feed everything on the farm!  Eliminate livestock feed bills and nourish people, calves, pigs and chickens with your own free solar energy.  Get your homestead really up and running with the all-grass Family Cow!

  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Class Size: Unlimited
  • Materials to Bring: notebook and pen, water bottle, sack lunch
  • Materials Provided: Food will be available for purchase at the fairgrounds, but class discussion will continue over lunchtime, so bring your lunch and don’t miss anything!
  • Cost: $135

Fundamentals of Cheesemaking: How to Make Popular Fresh Cheeses

Connie Meyer

Urban Overalls

Students will learn the fundamentals of how to make popular homestead cheeses that include ricotta, mozzarella, crème fraiche, marscapone, and cottage cheese. Enjoy samples of the cheeses you will be making during this workshop! Information covered will include: basic cheesemaking supplies and tools for the home cheesemaker that won’t break the bank; types of coagulants/cultures and how they impact the final cheese, resources for purchasing cheesemaking supplies, learn how various types of milk can (and cannot) be used in cheesemaking; as well as sourcing milk.

  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Class Size: 22
  • Materials to Bring: A positive attitude and materials to take notes
  • Materials Provided: Recipes for the all the cheeses made during the workshop, a package of 90 grade butter muslin, a container of liquid rennet, and a self-draining cheese mold.
  • Cost: $215

Homestead Carpentry: The Basics

Jason Contreras

Sow the Land

The Homestead Carpentry Workshop is for the beginner homesteader looking to build and do things themselves with their own hands.

We will go over the basic simple tools needed to build your homestead and show you how to use them. 
During the class we will be using these tools to make a veggie washing station start to finish. After the class we will raffle off the veggie washing station to one winner.

  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Class Size: 12
  • Materials to Bring:
  • Materials Provided: Step-by-step plan print out of the veggie washing station
  • Cost: $100

Beginner Beekeeping

Kaylee Richardson

The Honeystead

Students will learn basic beekeeping skills, hive building demonstration, and more! Learn all about becoming a beekeeper from experienced teachers in a casual atmosphere! Weather permitting, you’ll even get to get into the hives, spin honey, and learn how to utilize all of the wax and bee goodness on your homestead. Learn about building your own hives and the benefits of bees! Bee suits and more will be provided for you.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

  • Location: Bentonville, Virginia
  • Class Size: Unlimited
  • Materials to Bring: Notebook/pen for note taking
  • Materials Provided: Bee suits
  • Cost: $245

Rabbits – From Hutch to Hearty Meal   SOLD OUT

Jeremy Chambers

Indepedence Acres Homestead

During the class, the instructor will walk you through many aspects of raising rabbits, the steps of rabbit processing, parting out or de-boning, and even preparing two rabbit based dishes with you.

Each participant /couple will walk away with the knowledge of selecting breeding stock, building or acquiring proper housing, preparing for breeding, rabbit care, processing and rabbit anatomy, confidence to prepare a dish and a small recipe booklet, a rabbit packaged and ready to cook, and a quality small game processing knife.

Morning session will consist of a discussion on raising rabbits on a homestead, a processing class, a lesson on parting out and de-boning a rabbit, and preparing two rabbit based dishes.  

Afternoon session will consist of each participant/couple processing their own rabbit under the supervision of the instructor, packaging it to take home, and sampling the dishes prepared in the morning during a Q&A session.  

  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Class Size: 15 Individuals or Couples
  • Materials to Bring:  Cooler with ice; Apron or change of clothes
  • Materials Provided: Rabbit to process, a small game knife, samples of rabbit based dishes, recipe booklet
  • Cost: $85 per person with one rabbit / $100 for couple with one rabbit to share (COUPLES: USE COUPON CODE “RABBITS2021” FOR DISCOUNT)

 Coturnix Quail from Hatch to Dispatch 

John and Anita Garrett

AJ Farms

Join AJ Farms, LLC and discuss the Coturnix Quail.  We will be walking you through the process of keeping Coturnix Quail on the homestead from hatch to dispatch .  You will take away knowledge about the hatching process, housing, care, picking breeding stock, dispatching and processing.

Each participant/couple will be given 4 quail to butcher and take with them at the end of the workshop.  You will be taught to dispatch humanely and how to process in 2 ways. We will be plucking one which leaves you with a whole intact bird the other will be skinned and butterflied.  Upon learning these skills you may decide which of the 2 methods you would like to use to process the remaining 2 Quail. Instructors will be available for help as needed.
You will also take home an information packet which will include some of our favorite recipes for you to try.

  • Location: Warren County Fairgrounds – Front Royal, Virginia
  • Class Size: 15 Individuals or Couples
  • Materials to Bring:  Kitchen Shears that can cut bone; Cooler with ice; Apron or change of clothes
  • Materials Provided: Coturnix Quail, A Pair of Hemostats, Scalding pot (will be shared), block ice and basins for cooling your quail, latex gloves. We will vacuum seal your quail for you at the end of the workshop
  • Cost: $95 per person with four quail / $115 for couple with four quail to share (COUPLES: USE COUPON CODE “QUAIL2021” FOR DISCOUNT)

 Whole Hog Butchering Workshop 

Andy Lane & Doug Wharton

Hand Hewn Farm

Join Doug and Andy from Hand Hewn Farm for this immersive Whole-hog workshop. Over the length of this class, students will be part of a storied communal ritual that is often outsourced from the farm. This workshop differs from some of the other workshops offered as this is a 3-day event that starts the day before the conference and ends on the two days following the conference. Each day covers specific topics that are sure to help you on your journey to hog butchering and meat curing on your homestead. You can choose any or all days to attend. 

The First Day (Thursday, Oct. 7th) of the workshop will cover:

  • How to calmly and humanely kill your homestead pig
  • Learn various methods of scalding and scraping that can be adapted for any homestead
  • How to utilize all the organs to create nutrient-dense food for your family
  • How to take advantage of lesser-used parts of the pig for your food.
  • How to make blood sausage and clean your own casings.

The Second Day (Sunday, Oct. 10th) of the workshop will cover: SOLD OUT

  • Traditional American and European Butchering techniques and methods
  • How to utilize every part of the pig to its highest potential
  • Optimum methods to cook every cut of pork
  • Lard rendering
  • How to produce flavorful, nutritious stock
  • Packaging for the freezer
  • Prioritize the best cuts to be cured and options for curing the whole pig

The Third Day (Monday, Oct. 11th) of the workshop will cover:

  • How to use the head to create a plethora of dishes including scrapple, goetta, headcheese and more. 
  • How to create your own delicious homestead bacon.
  • How to dry cure hams and other cuts of meat that will be preserved without the use of a freezer.
  • Taste a whole spectrum of cured meats that have been produced by Hand Hewn Farm to get a sense of what is possible.

  • Location: Bridgewater, Virginia
  • Class Size: 10 Individuals per day
  • Materials to Bring:  Comfortable clothes and shoes
  • Materials Provided: Breakfast and Lunch provided for each day.
  • Cost: $225 per person per day / $550 for the entire 3-day course