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Being bonkers about permaculture is a bit rare.  And when friends try to set you up, you realize that you really prefer to find somebody that has similar permaculture values.  

There are some people that attend two PDCs and several workshops every year, not only because they thoroughly enjoy it (it feeds their soul), but also because they meet the ONLY people that seem like a possible fit.   Unfortunately, most of the people at the events are not available or not quite the right fit, but these people are far, far closer than the alternatives.  It is clear that it is just matter of time until the right person is found.




Permaculture Design Courses

men and women at permaculture design courses PDC


There are about a hundred, all over the world, each year.  Two weeks of living with a group of people all studying the same thing.  While most people attend just one or two for their entire life, some people have been to a dozen.  Most of their lives are spent with non-permies and so two weeks with people that understand them is a welcome vacation.   And each PDC has a slightly different flavor, so it is a little like getting a whole new experience.  

Permies.com keeps a free list of all permaculture design courses here.

Wheaton Labs offers a PDC for scientists and engineers here.




Permaculture Workshops

men and women at permaculture design courses PDC


Maybe your interests are a bit more specific - so something like a workshop.  Or, more accurately, you might want to attend an event populated with the sort of person you are seeking.  A workshop is a really great way to get to know somebody - a few days of working side-by-side, plus all the skills you build along the way.  

Permies.com keeps a free list of all workshops here.

Wheaton Labs offers a PTJ (Permaculture Technology Jamboree) for learning and experimenting with permaculture and homesteading technology, here.


There's a lot of other types of workshops out there, too:  

  - natural building
  - PTJ
  - regional events like tree planting
  - community gardening classes
  - SKIP
  - master gardener course (like this one)
  - hugelkultur/gardening classes
  - local weekend workshop
  - four week long national workshops or conferences
  - "barn raising" events where you help build a natural building an learn a lot in the process

Host your own PDC or workshop?

What are some other ideas for in-person permaculture events you could meet someone like-minded at?

What kind of events would you be more likely to encounter lots of ladies? Which ones would you meet more guys?
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steward
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Years back, there was this thread called Where's all the dudes? It seemed like a lot of the volunteer opportunities had a large percentage of women.
 
pollinator
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Sonja Draven wrote:
Host your own PDC or workshop?
What are some other ideas for in-person permaculture events you could meet someone like-minded at?
What kind of events would you be more likely to encounter lots of ladies? Which ones would you meet more guys?



From my view as a single guy. The biggest issue is time, I have a forty hours a week job and getting time off can be hard for a lot of reasons. Yes, in a heart beat I would go to a PDC or workshop if I had the time off.  For me a one or two day event would be about right.  Trying to explain to a boss that you would like to have two weeks in a row off is hard. Summer for me is a busy time. Fall or winter for me is the best time to take time off and go to an event.
 
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My question would be "how do we create more permie events locally -- where a like-minded group could get together frequently and maybe come up with a STEM style way to teach permaculture type stuff where even us newbies could support, learn, and grow.  And maybe find a similarly aged and interested person with whom to build a set of whatevers that we'd like to make part of the fabric of our local ruralities, towns, and small cities, etc.

I think the hardest part is pure economics -- the difficulty of people from diverse places being able to meet and greet enough for one or both people to decide to commit and move.  My belief is also we've become more than a little bit gun shy, I think.  Not so much about the commitment, but at least in my own experience:  I don't know that we'all remember how to become and stay sweethearts with each other.

What do y'all think? Could we build this kind of meeting space in many many different towns and small cities if we pilot projected a good one, and showed that it would work?

 
 
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I made a post in the singles forum years ago and connected with 2 people but nothing serious ever came out of it. I find myself contemplating my relationship status a lot right now and i do wish there were permaculture mixers I could go to. Even if they were on zoom it would be nice to connect with like minded people. I'm in a Permaculture dead zone which makes it even worse. (Insert insult aimed at the state of ct here!) Honestly I'm hoping to meet someone at a farmers market since I'm trying to cut back on the phone usage but the odds are slim, guess i better start hoping for fate to intervene lol
 
Paul Ellsworth
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A farmers market-- that is brilliant... Because that's the exact audience/group where we need to grow. i have a rather brilliant gardening friend who could help me turn that into a doable! Will post a bit more after chatting with her.
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:Years back, there was this thread called Where's all the dudes? It seemed like a lot of the volunteer opportunities had a large percentage of women.



That’s pretty much my experience 😊

And the token man is married!
 
Helen Butt
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Paul Ellsworth wrote:My question would be "how do we create more permie events locally -- where a like-minded group could get together frequently and maybe come up with a STEM style way to teach permaculture type stuff where even us newbies could support, learn, and grow.  And maybe find a similarly aged and interested person with whom to build a set of whatevers that we'd like to make part of the fabric of our local ruralities, towns, and small cities, etc.

I think the hardest part is pure economics -- the difficulty of people from diverse places being able to meet and greet enough for one or both people to decide to commit and move.  My belief is also we've become more than a little bit gun shy, I think.  Not so much about the commitment, but at least in my own experience:  I don't know that we'all remember how to become and stay sweethearts with each other.

What do y'all think? Could we build this kind of meeting space in many many different towns and small cities if we pilot projected a good one, and showed that it would work?

 



I did a PDC in the hope of meeting someone but there wasn’t anyone single/in my age range. Even if you had the time, it’s a small chance with a lot of inconvenience and expense.

Regular smaller events are probably a better way to go - you can fit them in and it means you can get to know people over a period of time. Hasn’t worked for me yet but then I always needed to take my daughter with me, which created a different dynamic.
 
Helen Butt
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William Hiers wrote:I made a post in the singles forum years ago and connected with 2 people but nothing serious ever came out of it. I find myself contemplating my relationship status a lot right now and i do wish there were permaculture mixers I could go to. Even if they were on zoom it would be nice to connect with like minded people. I'm in a Permaculture dead zone which makes it even worse. (Insert insult aimed at the state of ct here!) Honestly I'm hoping to meet someone at a farmers market since I'm trying to cut back on the phone usage but the odds are slim, guess i better start hoping for fate to intervene lol



I joined PIRN (Permaculture International Research Network) not only because l’m interested in research, though I am interested in it. Nothing much was happening in the network until just before Christmas when an enterprising member said ‘Hey, let’s get this group moving with a zoom call’. We’ll be having our second this coming Friday and then another in a couple of weeks or so.

When asked at the first meeting, what we most wanted from PIRN, guess what the no. 1 response was? More zoom calls!
 
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I like the farmer's market idea.  I started a Homesteading Club in my area and it has brought together a lot of people.  If I were single it might be a way to catch a partner.  On paper you might say that my area is a permaculture dead zone as well but once you start talking to people about it, they come out of the woodwork.  My little homesteading club has 170 emails on the mailing list after two years.  It's lead to building a a Community Garden that also would be a good place to find like minded people.

If you build it, they will come
 
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My question would be, why not set up events which are specifically designed for singles?  How would you do that without it degenerating into some kind of swingers event?  Singles cruises are a thing, for example. If word got out that PDCs are a hunting ground for singles, it might become rather off-putting for those who are attending for the course content!  
 
Nicole Alderman
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A lot of people go to church in part because they're hoping they'll meet someone of a similar ideology. But, that doesn't stop non-single people from going. Maybe a single person never meets a match at church, but they still learned something. The same, I think, applies to a permaculture event. If I were single, I'd much go to an event to learn something, than just one aimed at singles. If you go to a normal event, you come away with having learned something you wanted to learn, even if you didn't meet someone you wanted to meet.
 
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Paul Ellsworth wrote:
My question would be "how do we create more permie events locally..

I think that is exactly the answer, Paul.  Small meet and greets to build ideas for larger workshops with like minded folks.  I have found I don’t really have to know so much about the topic as to find people who do.  People love to share their knowledge.   I use to host a Science Cafe monthly.  It was a free event at a restaurant or bar.  We picked topics in advance and found folks to come speak.  People ate, listened, asked questions, and visited.  Once when I couldn’t find an “expert “ willing to present- I made a short slide show from a Google search with pros and cons of the topics and just presented them for open discussion- It was a great night.  And a true world expert was in the audience. It was a lovely surprise.
Long winded way to say- maybe arranging an informal session like just described to get folks coming around and then form a group that wants to start hosting workshops or events locally.

The SKIP and other things sound amazing but I’m in eastern NC, and starting small locally would make more sense for me.

I like your idea Paul.  Maybe we can all bounce around some ideas for ways to start locally.
 
T Blankinship
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I had a thought the other day. A very informal meeting at a business, coffee shop comes to mind. So it would go something like this "Who wants to meet at ( input time here ) and just talk about how cool permaculture is to do?". Then add the place of business. Nothing be on that.  And I feel if an event was about one hour away from where I live and was at the right time I would most likely go. In my view a bigger city could be better. For example if there was a meeting like this in south west Missouri, people from Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas and Missouri could meet easily in Joplin Missouri.
 
pollinator
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Don't forget events and groups that are allied to permaculture but don't use the name.  Most states have some kind of organic grower's group, for instance....this is where my partner first laid eyes on me.  Think about environmental organizations, activism around threatened areas or other issues of concern, and just other fun social activities....music festivals come to mind.  Of course all of this assumes pre-or-post covid world, but there is also a surprising amount going on on line as well.  It has many dangers and drawbacks, but I met one awesome girlfriend on a dating website, too
 
Paul Ellsworth
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Snipping a little, into the bits I am feeling connected to:

Mike Haasl wrote:I like the farmer's market idea.  I started a Homesteading Club in my area and it has brought together a lot of people.  ... once you start talking to people about it, they come out of the woodwork.  ... It's lead to building a a Community Garden that also would be a good place to find like minded people. If you build it, they will come



There may be a bit of an opportunity here if we can get past the covid-mess sufficiently well, and as it develops, I'll experiment & tweak and then give y'all my feedback at season's end. Here in the area we have a few u-pick orchards and two decent size farmer's markets... Most importantly, there's not much of a fee to play and I can get the equivalent of maybe a 20x20 booth space.  Thought being... put out a decent supply of "fill your cup with cold water", plop your buttz down in these here chairs and have somewhat "permie style expert" led conversations, bit of folk music, etc. and just see what and WHO comes to be part of something old but new.  Thoughts?
 
Mike Haasl
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Yup, that should do the trick!  I had a booth at a music, art and sustainability fair where the banner for the booth was "Homesteading Club / Permaculture".  So I split my table between club stuff and general "ask me about permaculture" stuff.  Half the people walking by were interested in one or the other and it kept me pretty busy all day.
 
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This sounds like the best perspective. Thanks
 
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I second the idea of developing an affinity group, with partnering-up being a secondary/tertiary objective. Even if all the people in your group are partnered-up or are otherwise not seeking a new relationship, hey: they know other people, and once they learn you're not a creep they may introduce you to those other people.

Being a customer at farmer's markets is also beneficial in this regard. Although I don't have a booth myself, I have come into the habit of briefly chatting with everyone staffing the booths I buy from. In general, a vendor will appreciate the business, the interaction, and the potential for future patronage/connection. It's a natural way to keep conversations brief as well: they're at work, and you have other vendors to visit/errands to run.
 
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In my community, pre-covid, there was a monthly mixer called Green Drinks. Not specifically for permaculture folks but definitely permaculture-adjacent. I've never been, but as I understand it was presented as an opportunity for green business owners as well as individuals to network and socialize.

There's a Green Drinks international organization that lists places with groups.





 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:A lot of people go to church in part because they're hoping they'll meet someone of a similar ideology. But, that doesn't stop non-single people from going. Maybe a single person never meets a match at church, but they still learned something. The same, I think, applies to a permaculture event. If I were single, I'd much go to an event to learn something, than just one aimed at singles. If you go to a normal event, you come away with having learned something you wanted to learn, even if you didn't meet someone you wanted to meet.



I LOVE this Nicole and as a believer trusting God for a mate… I find that I’ve accepted that if I go somewhere to do something or learn something… finding a mate there would just be an added bonus but NOT my purpose. I have friends who attend events or go places because single available men will be there... perhaps that is enough for them… or they are just not as peculiar as I see myself to be. I am simply not interested in doing that… I’d like for my future partner to find me doing something that interests me and being my authentic self… (which I think is why permies are suggesting these ideas here)

(once in a relationship… as I’ve done previously, I have been willing to do lots of things I don’t particularly enjoy or interest me because I love and care about the other person but I hope to find that special someone doing what interests him and being his authentic self… not just being in a place to find likeminded singles.)

However, I am still single with no prospects in sight… so perhaps, I am not the best person to advise with a successful love story. But, I have found that this philosophy of showing up places leads to quite a bit of fulfillment.

I have met other permies at farmers markets, on Craigslist, at library talks, arboretums, local county workshops, an airBnB, at Weston A Price Foundation (WAPF) conferences in other states, WAPF chapter meetings/talks, MeetUp.com, farm stands, nurseries, churches and of course HERE. I have never dated any of them, nor did more than a handful remain in my life but I did learn and grow and I feel that the other people and I felt enriched and/or challenged by the conversations and experiences we shared… which indeed added value to each of our lives.

*Speaking of finding a good match…
The-last-pair-of-clean-socks.JPG
[Thumbnail for The-last-pair-of-clean-socks.JPG]
 
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Yes Alana -pretty name - it gets more difficult to meet guys as you get older. I am an older gal - 70 in March who is looking to be equally yoked.  Do not stop looking, do not lower your standards.  Build the life you want for you and you just may stumble over him! And if there is a guy out there looking in North Carolina - give me a shout out!
 
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"Being bonkers about permaculture is a bit rare.  And when friends try to set you up, you realize that you really prefer to find somebody that has similar permaculture values.

 

Thanks for a great thread and what a great idea!
 
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T Blankinship wrote: From my view as a single guy. The biggest issue is time, I have a forty hours a week job and getting time off can be hard for a lot of reasons. Yes, in a heart beat I would go to a PDC or workshop if I had the time off.  For me a one or two day event would be about right.  Trying to explain to a boss that you would like to have two weeks in a row off is hard. Summer for me is a busy time. Fall or winter for me is the best time to take time off and go to an event.



This is me as well, trying to find local events or groups to get my foot in the door of this whole new environment, while working full time still.
 
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