Archive for the ‘Urban agriculture’ Category

Call for Proposals at Good Food Fest, March 24, 2018

Want to present your preserving process? Wax eloquent about the wonders of worm composting? Crow about your kombucha? Brag on your beautiful homebrew?

The Good Food Fest is asking for presentation topic proposals for 2018. Deadline is Feb. 2, 2018.

Event Date: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Event Hours: 10:00am – 5:00pm
Event Location: UIC Forum, 725 W. Roosevelt Road, Chicago, IL
Workshops Hours: 10:30am – 4:00pm
Length of Workshops: 30 minutes
Workshops Location: Level 1 of UIC Forum in combined Rooms D-E-F

Workshop presenters should focus on skills-based topics that can be delivered in a concise 30-minute format to a small group. Audience engagement is critical and a format that fosters direct interaction and time for questions is essential. Each Resource Center will seat 6-12 attendees with standing room for a small group. Your proposal should include a description of your presentation format to help us understand how it will integrate into this environment.


COMPOST IT: includes soil topics, vermiculture, compost teas, troubleshooting, best practices, or anything else related to composting practices.

GROW YOUR OWN: includes urban growing, container gardening, season extension, harvesting & handling, and other DIY gardening skills.

MAKE YOUR OWN: includes kitchen skills, keeping cultures (kombucha and sourdough), culinary curiosities, special diets, preserving, fermenting and other creative cooking topics.

RAISE YOUR OWN: includes livestock, raising urban animals, bees, chickens, goats, or anything else of interest to backyard livestock enthusiasts.

Thank you for your interest, and we look forward to seeing the creative ideas our great Good Food community comes up with! Please e-mail questions to Nick Lucas at



Urban Livestock Expo, Feb. 3, 2018 – additional info

On February 3rd, 2018, 11am-2pm, AUA and Southside Occupational Academy warmly invite you to the 6th Annual Urban Livestock Expo: FREE, fun, family-friendly workshops on raising bees, goats, chickens, ducks and more in your yard!

All levels of expertise and interest welcome, from the experienced to the curious! Workshops will cover daily care, ideal breeds, how to troubleshoot common problems, and professionals’ tips for being a good neighbor with animals in the city. Also get a chance to explore the amazing urban agriculture program at our host site, Southside Occupational Academy!

Additionally, area urban livestock groups and businesses will staff resource tables with information on further learning opportunities, support networks, sources of supplies, equipment, and more.

Don’t miss this fun opportunity to expand your knowledge, connect with other practitioners, and bond with a goat! Further details here:, and detailed workshop topics to follow. Reach out to AUA with questions at or 773-850-0428. We hope you’ll join us!

6th Annual Urban Livestock Expo
Organized by Advocates for Urban Agriculture (AUA) and Southside Occupational Academy
Saturday, February 3rd, 11am-2pm
Southside Occupational Academy
7432 S. Hoyne Ave
Free parking and public transit accessible!

Download the poster here.

Needed ASAP – volunteers for 2017 coop tour

We need your help for the Windy City 2017 coop tour! It’s only one month away, and the coordinator Martha Boyd of Angelic Organics Learning Center has put out a desperate email, calling for “5-10 really motivated people” to volunteer ASAP. If she can’t muster the necessary support, she’ll be forced to pull the plug.

If you can help, email Martha today. 

This year’s concept was to extend the Tour as a showcase of the variety of Eco-Yard systems and activities that many of folks demonstrate over and above backyard chickens — Eco-Yards can include hosts who don’t have backyard livestock but can share lots of other interesting examples of green/sustainable yards and homes.
SO — We hope that the notion of a bigger, more expansive Tour in 2018 can tide folks over if no Coop Tour this Sept.




Seeking proposal topics for Good Food Fest on March 18

We’re again recruiting presenters for short (20 mins) workshops in the Festival’s Good Food Commons, between 10:30AM and 4PM. 

The event is at the Good Food Festival, Sat March 18, at the UIC Forum (725 W. Roosevelt Road, Chicago, IL).

As in the past couple years, ChiChickEns is coordinating the “Raise Your Own” section, seeking presenters on all livestock topics. You can cover the basics, and/or you can discuss a special skill or interest. Ideally you bring a demonstration critter (or two) and some supplies/equipment for show and tell.
Presentations are just 20 mins long and start every half-hour, from 10:30AM and ending at 4PM.
There’s a short form to fill out (and more info about the event) at this LINK. The button for the application is at the bottom of that page. The deadline for filling out the application is Feb 20.
Presenters get access to this fun and busy event (Sat), and you can also reserve a table to display your stuff on Fri (see the link for more on that.)
Feel free also to propose teaching a workshop in another Resource Area (Growing, Composting, Making, or Community Building), as you wish.
Event guidelines mention needing proof of insurance to display live animals — if you are not a small biz or organization with your own liability insurance, we can arrange for event coverage — please contact me, and I can point you in the right direction.
Also, if you have other questions, let me know!

2017 Urban Livestock Expo

Come out for the Urban Livestock Expo, Feb 18, 10-1, at the Chicago High School For Agricultural Sciences, 3857 W 111th St, Chicago, Illinois 60655.

Ever considered how to keep bees, goats, chickens, ducks or quails in your backyard? Join AUA’s winter gathering for free, fun workshops on daily care, ideal breeds, how to troubleshoot common problems, and professionals’ tips for being a good neighbor with animals in the city!

All levels of expertise and interest welcome, from the experienced to the curious! In addition to these great workshops, students will guide us on behind-the-scenes tours of their livestock barn and aquaponics center!

Area urban livestock groups and businesses will also staff resource tables with information on further learning opportunities, support networks, sources of supplies and equipment, and more.

To power all that learning, we’ll have tasty local food and beverage vendors with us as well! Don’t miss this fun opportunity to expand your knowledge, connect with other practitioners, and get close to a goat. Spread the word to your networks, send questions to, and see you then!

**Unfortunately, Home to Roost will not able to attend this year due to chicken-keeping classes at the Morton Arboretum. 


Annual Windy City Coop Tour – Sat./Sun., Sept. 17-18, 2016

Join chicken owners and chicken enthusiasts from across the city of Chicago on the annual Windy City Coop Tour, Sept. 17-18, 10 AM to 2 PM. You’ll be able to tour urban backyards, see coops, poultry, gardens, beehives, and other “green” living elements!


Check out the coop tour info on the Chicago Chicken Enthusiasts webpage: a map of coop tour locations and site info (including breeds and other critters).

Tour Guidelines

  • Please respect the privacy of our Tour Hosts & Flocks by visiting ONLY on the day they are hosting Visitors, between 10AM & 2PM.
  • Visit Hosts’ yards and coops, ask questions, and take photos.
  • It’s a self-guided Tour — no need to pre-register. You can see as many as you want and have time for.
  • Children supervised by adults are welcome on the Tour.
  • DO NOT BRING DOGS or other pets.
  • If a yard is full, you may be asked to wait momentarily until current Visitors exit.
  • To prevent spread of communicable chicken diseases, Hosts may direct Visitors to decontaminate their shoes at the entrance.
  • Stay within the boundaries that Hosts designate for Visitors.
  • Restrooms, drinking water, and snacks are NOT provided on the Tour — plan accordingly and bring what you need with you.
  • Street parking may be scarce. Consider taking public transit and/or riding a bike on the Tour!

A few notes on sites

  • Again, PLEASE go to sites only if they are hosting on the day/s you want to visit!
  • Four coop locations (BLUE) are open for Visitors both Sat & Sun.
  • Eleven are open Saturday ONLY (RED).
  • Seven are open Sunday ONLY (GOLD).
  • Hosts of this year’s Tour live in 19 of Chicago’s 50 Wards: 1, 2, 12, 19, 20 (2), 25, 26, 31, 32, 33, 36 (2), 40, 41, 43, 45 (2), 47, 48, 49, and 50!

Home to Roost looks forward to joining the coop tour again next year but remains a proud sponsor! Catch me at Garfield Park Conservatory’s Harvest Days.

Chicago Tonight Covers Urban Agriculture

Chicago Tonight covered urban ag in this fun piece. They focused on goats and touched on bees and (of course!) chickens!