Events

ElderFlower Blossom

Yes, the Midwest Elderberry Cooperative Wants You!
We do accept, and truly appreciate, volunteer help with our events and elderberry crop maintenance and harvest. Natura Farms incorporates education in its mission goals, which is one reason why it hosts our events. It provides opportunities for volunteer labor as a way of learning about sustainable agriculture, which includes the cultivation of elderberry. To volunteer, pre-register or coordinate group participation, please contact Paul Otten directly: 651-308-3801; pmo@chof.net.

Future Events

Nov, 17, 2017: Midwest Elderberry Cooperative Annual
Members & Board of Directors Meeting

Tom Erhardt from Albert Lea Seed Co. has graciously invited us to their free Open House and will provide us with a meeting room on Friday Nov. 17, so please mark your calendars. Their address is: 1414 W Main St, Albert Lea, MN 56007. We will set the time once we have the final program and send both to you in a future email.

You can see their conference speaker agenda here: http://www.alseed.com/News/2017-Open-HouseSAVE-THE-DATE-2017-10-10/1090 . As you note, there are three days in all, and you may attend any of those sessions that interest you.

We are waiting for a final program with times, but Paul and I plan to get there by 9 am. We are also invited to their free lunch, which was very good two years ago when Paul was last there. 

Presenting at 2018 Minnesota Organic Conference 
January 11-12, 2018 in Saint Cloud MN

Titled Transitioning Native Elder Berry & Flower Production from Craft Hobby to Commercial Small Fruit, Chris Patton and Paul Otten will talk about the marketing and horticultural challenges of producing certified organic elderberry on a commercial scale profitably. 

Past Events of Importance:

June 25-27 Summer Fancy Food Show,  New York, NY

Chris Patton as River Hills Harvest Marketers, LLC  will attend this show as part (booth #6363) of the Minnesota pavilion, hosted by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s Marketing folks. Besides showcasing the River Hills harvest brand, he will distribute information about the Midwest Elderberry Cooperative. 

July 8, 2017 Elderflower Power Day Cancelled!

Instead, I’ll be singing, “Where have all the flowers gone…” 

Click here to see images of hail damage at our main production field.

One of our favorite events [ See pictures from last year.] has been cancelled by an act of nature. Online direct sales of dried elderflowers and elderberries are handled by Sacred Blossom Farm. Please click here to order.

Paul Otten will take orders for plant purchases. You can get that info and much more about growing elderberry and soil health in general at his website: http://berrycommunications.midwest-elderberry.coop/elderberry-cultivation.html 

2017 Comprehensive Elderberry Workshop, Jefferson City, MO

The Carver Center, 3804 Bald Hill Road, Jefferson City, MO 
May 31 - June 1-2, 2017 

Terry Durham & his Elderberry Team put on the original and most comprehensive workshop about growing elderberry. To review some of the presentations given, please go to our Reports & Grants page.

Practical Farmers of Iowa Conference -
January 19-21, 2017, Scheman Bldg., Ames, IA

Begins January 19 at 1 pm, Short Course Presentations & Discussion:
Production, Processing, and Marketing of Alternative Berry Crops with Terry Durham, Chris Patton, Jim Riddle and Kurt Rueber and hopefully Paul Otten. To review past presentations given, please go to our Reports & Grants page. Please see the IPF website: http://practicalfarmers.org/2017-annual-conference/

July 9, 2016 Elderflower Power Day & Public Plant Sale 

MEC Board Member and Elderflower Committee leader Dr. Will Marsh submitted the following schedule of events beginning at 9 am:

  • Identify and pick flowers in the field that are suitable for processing
  • Make Elderflower Syrup
  • Make Elderflower Lemonade
  • Demonstrate Elderflower Wine making process and equipment
  • Tastings:
    • - Elderflower Lemonade
    • - Elderflower Wine
    • - Elderflower Liqueur
    • - Elderflower Cocktail Ideas

Hosted by:

River Hills Harvest Marketers, LLC
Berry Communications at Natura Farms
19060 Manning Trail N. 
Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047

http://berrycommunications.midwest-elderberry.coop/elderberry-cultivation.html 

Spring MEC - Midwest Members Meeting & VOTE, Elderberry Workshop, Farm Tour & Plant Sale 

June 4, 2016 from 8am-5pm, free event.
Minnesota Elderberry Cooperative will conduct its annual members meeting at 10 am in the to discuss and vote on final by-laws including WI, IA and other non-MN growers as equal members with MN growers (hence a likely name change). The public is welcome to listen in, visit and buy plants. Only paid members will be able to vote. 

Hosted by:

River Hills Harvest Marketers, LLC
Berry Communications at Natura Farms
19060 Manning Trail N. 
Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047

http://berrycommunications.midwest-elderberry.coop/elderberry-cultivation.html 

Participant at the Women's Agricultural Leadership Conference 2016
Celebrating 18 Years of the Women’s Agricultural Leadership Conference
Wednesday April 13, 2016, 8 am - 6 pm
Location: Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, 36785 Arboretum Drive, Chaska, MN

2016 Practical Farmers of Iowa Conference

January 22-23ay the invitation of SARE/USDA, Chris Patton will be presenting on growing/marketing elderberry at the Practical Farmers of Iowa Conference at the Iowa State Conference Center in Ames. 

Feast Local Foods Festival 2015
Mayo Civic CenterBox Office - 30 Civic Center Dr SE, Rochester, Minnesota 55902

More information at http://www.local-feast.org/.

The 2015 Green Lands Blue Waters Conference

November 3 & 4, 2015
Coffman Memorial Union, 3rd floor
Minneapolis-East Bank Campus of the University of Minnesota

MEC Founding Director Chris Patton will present & participate at the conference. Elderberries from Natura Farms will be included in the menu.

2015 Minnesota Elderberry Harvest Apprenticeship
8:30 am both days - Friday, August 28, 2015 and Saturday, August 29, 2015 
The University of Minnesota Good Agricultural Practices page provides (almost) everything you need to know:    
http://www.extension.umn.edu/rsdp/community-and-local-food/good-agricultural-practices/

Hosted by:

River Hills Harvest Marketers, LLC
Berry Communications at Natura Farms
19060 Manning Trail N. 
Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047
Click here to launch a short video of the 2014 Workshop.

Mother Earth News Fair, West Bend, WI
August 8-9, 2015
Terry Durham will present on growing elderberry for fun and profit. River Hills Harvest ElderBerry Juice products and MEC will share a booth at this event.

July 4, 2015 Elderflower Power Day & Public Plant Sale

Learn about elderflowers by participating in our harvest from 8 am - Noon. Enjoy your own picnic lunch on the farm. You will learn about the traditional uses of elderflowers and make some recipes. Elderberry plants will be available for sale plus a seasonal elderflower / elderberry bonus opportunity. 

Planned activities include: 

  • Harvesting Elderflowers:
    • Determine when flowers are ready to pick
    • Participate in picking and bagging elderflower cymes
    • Separating flowers from cymes
  • Making Elderflower Syrup 
    • The first step in making Elderflower Lemonade

Hosted by:
Berry Communications at Natura Farms
19060 Manning Trail N. 
Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047

Comprehensive Elderberry Workshop, Jefferson City, MO
June 18-19, 2015 Terry Durham & his Elderberry Team put on the original and most comprehensive workshop about growing elderberry. Keep an eye of riverhillsharvest.com for other events.

Spring Elderberry Workshop, Farm Tour & Plant Sale 

June 6, 2015 from 8am-5pm, free event.
Minnesota Elderberry Cooperative free workshop on growing elderberry and farm tour of some beautifully productive berry fields.

http://berrycommunications.midwest-elderberry.coop/elderberry-cultivation.html 

Event Partners:

Berry Communications, River Hills Harvest Marketers, LLC, Sustainable Farming Association, Organic Fruit Growers Association

Sponsored by North Central SARE

Hosted by:

River Hills Harvest Marketers, LLC
Berry Communications at Natura Farms
19060 Manning Trail N. 
Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047


Minnesota Elderberry Cooperative First Annual Members Meeting

9 am - Noon on Saturday, March 28, 2015 at 23 Empire St,  St. Paul, MN.  

Elderberry as a Third Crop, Presentation - March 9, 2015

Rural Advantage [http://ruraladvantage.org/], 1243 Lake Avenue Suite 222, Fairmont, MN 56031, 507-238-5449.

Sustainable Farming Association of MN

The 2015 SFA Annual Conference will be Feb. 14, 2015, at the College of Saint Benedict in St. Joseph, MN. 

Minnesota Elderberry Festival

Friday - Saturday, August 22-23, 2014, 8:00am - 5:00pm
At Natura Farms, LLC / Berry Communications
19060 Manning Trail N., Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047

Berry Communications (nursery) Paul Otten: 651-308-3801; pmo@chof.net;
Minnesota Elderberry Cooperative, Natura Farms, LLC, Natural Kick Farms, River Hills Harvest Marketers, LLC.
Chris Patton: 612-418-4624  


Minnesota Fruit & Vegetable Growers Assoc. Conference

Thursday - Friday, January 16-17, 2014

St. Cloud Convention Center

On Thursday afternoon at the MFVGA, MEC hosted the University of Missouri’s Patrick Byers, who will speak on the following elderberry related topics:

  • History of the Missouri Elderberry Development project, current emphasis areas, and future directions
  • Elderberry production practices, and how these recommendations may need to be adjusted for northern production areas
  • Development of the industry in Missouri, and the role that growers have played
  • Challenges to further development of the industry in Missouri and elsewhere

Byers-in-field

Patrick Byers

Regional Horticulture Specialist - Southwest Region
Greene County Extension Office, University of Missouri Extension
2400 South Scenic
Springfield, MO 65807
telephone: 
417-881-8909; fax 417-823-4818
email: byerspl@missouri.edu
Greene County Extension website: http://extension.missouri.edu/greene/


Biological Berry Day

Saturday, August 24, 2013, 8:00am - 5:00pm

At Natura Farms, LLC / Berry Communications

19060 Manning Trail N., Marine on St. Croix, MN 55047

Sponsored by:  

Berry Communications (nursery) Paul Otten: 651-308-3801; pmo@chof.net;
Minnesota Elderberry Cooperative, Natura Farms, LLC, Natural Kick Farms,
River Hills Harvest Marketers, LLC
 

This field day was developed with support from the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program, which is funded by the US Department of Agriculture — National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA-NIFA).

First International Symposium on Elderberry

© Midwest Elderberry Cooperative 2016