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Urban Livestock Expo Gathers City Critter Keepers

By Martha Boyd, Program Director, Urban Initiative (Chicago)

On February 16th, over 200 visitors convened at the Garfield Park Conservatory to learn about caring for livestock in the city. 

Many people helped make the first annual Urban Livestock Expo a success – the organizers: Advocates for Urban Agriculture (AUA), Angelic Organics Learning Center, Chicago Chicken Enthusiasts, the hosts, the Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance, the 15 presenters, 20+ volunteers AND the standing room only crowd who came to learn from experienced practitioners about keeping chickens, ducks, bees, goats, and rabbits in the city.

The well-versed presenters offered critter-specific information and advice on raising animals responsibly in backyards.  The many presenters answered questions and guided people to more resources and opportunities to learn more through visits, apprenticeships, sources of supplies, networking, and more.  

Following the Expo, a group toured two nearby yards with goats and chickens in residence.

 We want to acknowledge and thank especially:

  • Fellow sponsors and organizers: for preparing and shaping, and for solving problems as they arose
  • Speakers: for knowledgeable, grounded, and thoughtful presentations
  • Staffers of info tables: for sharing your products and knowledge
  • Volunteers (greeters, notetakers, photographers, and herders): your many willing hands made light work
  • Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance for hosting, and Dill Pickle Coop for their generous donation of fruit
  • Journalists and bloggers and others for spreading the word so effectively, include WBEZ’s multimedia coverage of livestock in the city!
  • AND hundreds of visitors from many wards of Chicago and beyond, for engaging enthusiastically in the day

  To watch videos of some of the presentations, visit AUA’s Youtube Channel. You can read more about the event on Home to Roost’s blog.  

We're looking forward to the 2014 Expo next year!

Photos by Amandas Areias

City ChickenUrban Livestock ExpoUrban Livestock Expo - Bees