Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Slide Ranch Facilities Manger Position Available

Title: Facilities Manager
Position: Full time – Residence at Slide Ranch Required
Reports to: Director of Ranch Operations

Slide Ranch provides farm-based environmental education to Bay Area youth
and families that focuses on the principles of sustainable agriculture and
environmental stewardship. By cooking, gardening, caring for animals and
exploring the coastal ecosystems, visitors of all ages see the connection
between a healthy food system and a healthy, resilient environment.

Position Summary
The Facilities Manager reports to the Director of Operations, and is part of the Ranch Management Team, which also includes a Garden Manager and Animal Care Manager. The Facilities Manager is responsible for day-to-day upkeep, maintenance and repair of the farm facilities and staff housing in a manner that is safe and appropriate for providing hands-on educational programs to the public. The Facilities Manager coordinates regularly with the Ranch Management Team to assist or seek help with maintenance tasks and chores as needed or directed. As one of the main staff training the Teachers in Residence, the Facilities Manager provides in-depth orientation to facilities systems at the beginning of each internship cycle. In conjunction with other staff, the Facilities Manager also plans and leads ongoing, weekly training sessions with the Teachers-in-Residence to grow their skills in topics such as basic tool use and safety, building design and construction, plumbing, electrical, etc. This position requires living on-site in housing provided by Slide Ranch.

Primary Responsibilities
 Maintains the ranch facilities, grounds and trails in a safe, functional and attractive manner,
consistent with organizational values and available budget.
 Responsible for the safe and responsible operation and maintenance of all utility systems at Slide Ranch including: plumbing systems, electrical systems, appliances, wood burning stoves and electrical heating systems, waste management and disposal systems including trash, recycling, and compost toilets.
 Responsible for maintenance, repair and improvement of all buildings and facilities at Slide Ranch.
 Works with Slide Ranch staff and GGNRA to develop and implement the campus improvement plan, seeing each project from planning through construction and completion.
 Maintains the annual facilities budget.
 Maintains Ranch workshop and tools in clean and safe working order.
 Trains and orients all staff and interns on proper use of workshop, tools and machinery before authorizing use of tools.
 Responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of ranch tractor.
 Responsible for monitoring and training staff on proper tractor use and protocols.
 Plans and leads weekly Ranch learn-and-work sessions for interns.
 Maintains gates, fences and drainage systems.
 In coordination with Animal Care Manager, helps to maintain and repair animal shelters, pastures, fences, pens and enclosures.
 In coordination with Garden Manager, helps to maintain and repair garden beds, hose bibs and plumbing in the garden.
 Maintains fire safety systems including fire extinguishers, smoke alarms, woodstoves and chimneys.
 Provides regular input to Director of Operations about needed repairs and ideas for improving safety and operations around the ranch.
 Responsible for purchasing and ordering all supplies and materials needed for ranch maintenance with an emphasis on reused and recycled materials.
 Participates in annual health and safety inspections; implements changes as required.
 Works with staff to maintain the water system, including daily monitoring and sampling, repairs, and monthly sampling in accordance with State and Federal regulations.

Other Responsibilities
 Coordinates with Ranch Management Team to seek help with ranch facilities tasks as needed.
 Assists with chore coverage as needed to maintain the animals and garden.
 Collaborates with staff regarding volunteer groups scheduled to work at Slide Ranch; leads or assists volunteer groups as needed.
 Collaborates with staff regarding tasks for site rentals and special events.
 Maintains firewood supply.
 As member of the residential community at Slide Ranch, participates in community chores, meetings, cleanup and cooking and helps coordinate community training as needed.

 Commitment to environmental education and sustainable farming.
 High School diploma and five years demonstrated experience with carpentry, plumbing, electrical and other facilities maintenance skills.
 Ability to lift 50 lbs. and perform strenuous outdoor tasks related to ranch maintenance.
 Willingness to do what it takes to perform emergency repairs when needed.
 Flexibility to provide on-duty coverage on weekends and/or evenings on rotational basis or with other days off, as needed and arranged.
 Teaching experience preferred, especially with a variety of learning styles or experience levels.
 Ability to work closely and collaborate with a wide variety of people.
 Computer literacy a plus.
 Clean DMV record and valid driver’s license required.

Housing, food, retirement plan option, health, dental and life insurance. Annual salary $22,000- $25,000. Applicants must be comfortable living in rustic accommodations.

To Apply
No phone calls please. Mail, email, or fax resume with cover letter and three work related references with contact information to:
Slide Ranch, 2025 Shoreline Highway, Muir Beach CA 94965,
fax 415-381-5762.

Visit for full description and more information.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Sheep Shearing Services

If you ever need someone or know of someone who would need a shearer please call Thomas Bagwell at 760-265-2511. Mobile, willing to travel any distance, insured, has references, and does hooves. 

Monday, July 29, 2013

On-Farm Food Safety Workshop

Wednesday August 28, 2013, 8:30 AM to 12 noon, Mandarin Hill Orchard, Penryn

Workshop fee: $5 per person, payable in cash at the workshop. Fee includes drinks, snacks, and materials.
Pre-registration is required. Workshop is limited to 20 people. Register at
Learn about:
·         Key practices to reduce risk of contamination on your farm
·         Important information about the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and how it might affect your farm
·         What is involved in a food safety audit and who might be subject to such audits

For questions and more information, contact Cindy Fake

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Market opportunity in Loomis!

The Flower Farm in Loomis is looking for one or two growers to supply vegetables to be sold through their nursery. They'd prefer someone who can grow year round. In addition, the Flower Farm is growing approximately 1/2 acre of vegetables on-site (for use in their cafe). They would be willing to work with a farmer who would take responsibility for their plot in exchange for the lion's share of the profit from the garden's sales.

If you're interested, please contact Annie Bowler at the Flower Farm at 916/705-1325 or at For more information on the Flower Farm, go to

Communications & Events Internship at CalCAN

The California Climate and Agriculture Network (CalCAN) is a collaboration of California’s leading sustainable agriculture organizations and allies advocating for policy solutions at the nexus of climate change and agriculture. We came together to cultivate sustainable agriculture leadership to face the challenges of climate change and to serve as the sustainable agriculture voice on climate change policy in California.

Internship Position Description – The intern will assist in media, communications and event organizing, working with CalCAN’s Executive Director (based in Sebastopol) and Policy Director (based in Sacramento). Activities will include development of educational and social media materials; writing newsletter/blog articles; event planning and coordination. The internship will also require assisting with other support roles, including database management and web site maintenance. The intern will receive an orientation and on-going supervision by CalCAN’s Executive Director.

More details are available at:

Friday, July 19, 2013

Farm Hack Davis Meet-Up - Berryessa Brewery 7-21, 4-6pm

Sunday, July 21, 4–6 P.M.
Farm Hack is happening in California! The Farm Hack Davis topic is starting to take shape around beginning farmers, equipment, and local infrastructure for the production and consumption of staple foods. We need your input. Come hang out with your farmer neighbors and meet some of the tinkerers, recyclers, mechanics, and engineers that have an interest in farming and food. We’re looking for folks who have problems to solve, inventions on the back burner, or tools to tweak, who want to share ideas with each other, and other skilled craftspeople to see what comes out if it. If you are not a farmer but interested or skilled in any of these things, come on over, we want to have a beer with you. 

We’ll be hosting informal meet-ups all summer to prepare for the big event on November 16-17, 2013. Save the date!

But come out and have a beer with us Sunday first. This little gathering is free and open to all. Pass it on to folks you think might want to come. Hope to see you there!

-The Farm Hack Davis Team

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Upcoming Farmer Training Classes at Soil Born Farms!!!

Building Healthy Soil
Saturday, July 20, 3pm-7pm

Soil may be the single most undervalued and precious resource existing on the planet today. In order to truly understand how to build and maintain good soil health one must understand what soil is and how it works. Come out to the American River Ranch and learn about the fundamentals of the physical, chemical and biological properties of soil, as well as how to build and maintain the fertility of your farm or garden’s soil.  Register here.

Instructor: Chuck Ingels, UC Cooperative Extension
Chuck Ingels has been the Farm and Horticulture Advisor with UC Cooperative Extension in Sacramento County since 1996. In this role, he conducts research and educational programs for tree fruit and wine grape growers, landscape professionals, and the public.  He also oversees the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center, which is maintained by over fifty Master Gardeners.  He was the lead technical editor and author of the UC Davis publication, The Home Orchard, published in 2007, as well as Cover Cropping in Vineyards, published in 1998.    He holds a Bachelor’s degree in fruit science from Cal Poly, SLO, and a Master’s degree in horticulture from UC Davis.  From 1989-96, he was a tree and vine crop analyst for the UC Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education Program. 

Harvesting, Grading, and Packing for Wholesale, Retail and Direct Markets
Saturday, July 27, 3pm-7pm

Once you’ve done the hard work of growing beautiful produce, now it’s time to get it to market!  Learn how to communicate with buyers, proper post-harvest handling, harvest assessment, and much, much more.  Dina Izzo, veteran of the sustainable farming industry in California and farmer-educator to new farmers will take the guesswork out of harvesting and delivering your veggies and fruits so they’re at their peak and helping you build your market presence.  Register here.

Instructor: Dina Izzo, Bludog Organic Produce Services
Dina Izzo, owner and founder of BluDog Organic Produce Services, has had a 30 year career in the organic produce industry. Her experience includes management/purchasing in the retail sector with several stores including locally owned chain New Leaf Community Markets headquartered Santa Cruz. Dina's wholesale experience includes nine years with Veritable Vegetable in San Francisco and six years as creator/general manager of ALBA Organics, a wholesale distribution company focused on family scale organic farms in the  Salinas Valley. Dina is the founder of Bludog Organic Produce Services, a consulting firm serving small-scale and beginning farmers that works to create and execute marketing plans and strategies for an economically viable business.

Organic Systems Compliance: Creating and Maintaining a Systems Plan
Wednesday, July 31, 5:30-8:30

Preparing for organic certification can be daunting. However, it can be a valuable asset to your farm business. In this class you’ll learn about the benefits and drawbacks to certification, different types of certification, as well as how to create and maintain an organic systems plan to ensure compliance with state and federal organics regulations.  Register here.

Instructor: Rex Dufour, NCAT/ATTRA
Rex Dufour's background is in entomology and integrated pest management. His work experience includes managing sustainable development projects in Thailand and Laos. Mr. Dufour has worked as both project manager and program specialist for NCAT and heads NCAT's California office. In addition to the ATTRA project, he is involved in several minority farmer outreach projects.

Sarah Barnes
Education Coordinator
Soil Born Farms Urban Agriculture & Education Project

New Land Opportunity in Lassen County!

Lassen County ID #174: Hundreds of acres flat, undeveloped sage scrub near Susanville 
324 acres and possibly 256 additional acres are available for long-term lease, suitable for grazing or development for other long-term agricultural use. At 4,000 feet elevation, this sagebrush-dominated landscape is surrounded by thousands of acres of government land. Electricity is accessible, but not yet hooked up. There are no buildings on site, and there is currently no irrigation. The owner is willing, however, to help invest in well, fencing or possibly solar electricity. Honey Lake sits only one mile from the property boundary. There is dirt road access to both sides of the property, about 1/2 mile from the nearest paved County road.

New Land Opportunity in Placer County!

Placer County #1452 
26 acre organic farm available for lease or partnership with option to purchase in Newcastle. 

Gentle slope suitable for organic agriculture; underground irrigation with gravity feed 80-90 psi from PCWA. 8 acres gentle rolling decomposed granite soil, 7 acres flatland, 3-10 acre 3-8% gentle slope. Land is fenced and 
currently has mature 500 satsuma mandarin orchard, 2 acre vineyard, and livestock. Pasture 60 years, organic history goes back 17 years. Compost used extensively with livestock manure base. Owner desires partnership with potential option to purchase for farming operation. Owners live onsite.