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  • HDT Team

A Day Devoted to Sustainability


Back to Basics is one of Happy Dancing Turtle’s hallmark events, bringing together experts, enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, and everyday people around ideas of sustainability and resiliency. Of the more than 45 workshops offered, we’re highlighting two areas this week that help you take care of yourself, your loved ones, and/or the planet.


A Wealth of Wellness Ideas


Taking care of yourself and your loved ones is something you probably do each day without thinking too much about it. All of us have routines and habits that help us care for ourselves and those we love. The lineup of workshops for the 2023 Back to Basics includes multiple opportunities to introduce yourself to new ideas, information and practices. Maybe it will help you take care to the next level, whether that’s for yourself or those around you.


In “What Is Ayurveda?” Aprile Lack will introduce participants to this ancient science focused on restoring and maintaining a healthy balance between the mind, body, and soul. Learn the connections to nature, seasonal routines and diet and lifestyle guidelines.



Faith in Action of Cass County is a non-profit that has a mighty network of volunteers who provide assistance with transportation, home repair, caregiver support, meal delivery and more. Theresa Eclov and Larellyn Micheau of FIA are presenting “Preparing for the Aging Storm,” a workshop offering basic tools and resources to help be prepared for emergencies and crises as we get older. Stop by the FIA booth at the vendor/exhibitor fair to learn more about their resources. Bonus: FIA has some interesting volunteer opportunities as well.


If you are a caregiver for an elderly or ill loved one, or have reluctance to think about end-of-life issues, “Ask a Death Doula” will provide some tips on this often-avoided topic. Learn tips on how to care for a loved one, the signs of approaching death, and simple ways to be present. And, of course, bring your questions for Tanya Hanson, death educator, massage therapist, hospice professional, and death doula.


Other workshops on Wellness topics include: Green Burial, Essential Oils, Juicing, Making Wines/Meads, Creative Nature Writing & Ecotherapy, yoga breathing and Yoga Nidra, Cannabis and personal exploration. Find the full list of workshops here.


Sustainability on a Bigger Scale

The Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs) work to meet people wherever they are on a journey to clean energy. “Add Some Clean Energy to Your Life” is geared for individuals who want to learn about energy efficiency, solar, and electric vehicles. The information includes program and incentives to help pay for them. “Clean Energy for Your Farm or Business” will focus on both financial and environmental sustainability with ideas to reduce costs and take advantage of programs and incentives.


Dana Gutzman of the Cass County Aquatic Invasive Species Program offers both the theoretical and the practical side of this challenging issue. In the Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) workshop, learn some basic aquatic identification, lake ecology, and the impact on property values, taxes and tourism.


Meet someone who takes sustainability down to zero, as in Zero Waste. April Hepokoski implements what she calls closed loop zero waste,, a lifestyle she lives out through a blog and the Zero Waste Nature School. In “Living Zero Waste for a More Sustainable World,” April will cover the 7 Rs of her adapted lifestyle, offering simple tricks & tips that may be applied right away.


Other workshops on sustainability include: The Cause & Solution for Plastic Pollution, Non-toxic Cleaners for Your Home, Energy Appreciation, Solar–Is It Right for Me, Learn About PFAs: ‘Forever Chemicals,’ and What to Do with Oxygen Bleach. Find the full list of workshops here.


In future blogs, we’ll explore workshops that focus on nature, gardening, and agriculture as well as water. But you can explore the workshop topics on your own and register anytime by clicking here. Early registration is encouraged as every year, some workshops fill up well before the event date.



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