Larry Yoder and Melissa Kinsey

ASI Bids Farewell to Two Long-Term Faculty

The 2017 Agroecology Summer Intensive (ASI) was the last year for two faculty members who have served the program since its inception in 2006. Larry Yoder and Melissa Kinsey were honored for their contributions at the concluding celebration of the 2017 ASI in early August.

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Ostergren Article on Climate Change Makes NASA website

Merry Lea’s Dr. Dave Ostergren is a co-author of a paper on climate change which recently turned up on a NASA webpage.

The article is entitled, “Promoting climate justice in high-income countries: lessons from African American communities on the Chesapeake Bay,” and appeared in a July 2017 issue of the journal, Climatic Change. It examines opportunities for increasing justice for communities likely to suffer most from climate change. 

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Jess Raffel giving a presentation on weed management.

Agroecology Students Share Research–On the Spot

Students in Merry Lea’s Agroecology Summer Intensive not only learn to grow things; they also work at communicating their learnings to others. In late July, they presented projects on topics such as composting, weed management and pastured chickens in a public forum open to community members. 

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Youth Explore Conservation at Merry Lea

About a dozen high school students are spending a week at Merry Lea in June to learn more about sustainability, land management and future careers that might interest them. The schedule looks like a cross between summer camp and college. The week began with a toasty cross-property hike. Participants are also scheduled for service projects, a tour of the Merry Lea Sustainable Farm, a research hike, a smattering of geology and plenty of campfires.

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West Side Project Nears Completion

Unlike many workers, Bill Minter can see at least one of the things he’s accomplished over the past quarter century. It is a 65-acre naturalized area on the west side of Merry Lea. The 25-year project transformed abandoned cropland overrun with invasive woody shrubs into native wetland, prairie and oak savanna habitats.

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Farm Food Reaches Mouths Via CSA

Merry Lea’s spring and summer CSA is in full swing, offering weekly bags of food to customers. Assistant Farm Manager Ellie Schertz prepares the deliveries every Tuesday. Chickens, salad greens and vigorous bunches of lovage are in this week’s goodie bags. Lovage is a celery-like herb used in salads and soups. It will go well with the chicken, Ellie says.

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Prairie burning near Kesling Wetland

Prairies Burn a Month Early

Warm weather the weekend of February 18 gave Land Manager Bill Minter and any nearby fire fans a leg up on spring prairie burning.

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Kayak with chickens

Faculty Prepare for New Sustainability Majors

Goshen College has been offering summer agriculture education since 2008 and fall sustainability education since 2012 through Merry Lea. But beginning in the fall of 2017, the college will be offering students complete majors in these rapidly-emerging field

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Exploring Goat Cay, part of Andros Marine National Park.

Master’s Students Explore Andros Island

Students in Merry Lea’s Master’s in Environmental Education program are learning to teach in a new ecosystem: a tropical island. This year, the curriculum expanded to include a three-week experience on Andros Island—a part of the Bahamas.

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Merry Lea Farm Blog

The Merry Lea Mission

  • Providing a natural sanctuary for northern Indiana’s plants and animals
  • Providing environmental education for people of all ages
  • Providing a setting for re-creating opportunities that benefit the human body and spirit while not exploiting the land or excessively disturbing its ecosystems
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