Lanark Ecovillage Project

Lanark Eco-Village (LEV) In our northern climate, a house without a heating system would be considered incomplete. Within the next couple of decades, a home built without a food supply will be considered incomplete. The Lanark Eco-Village aims to build … Continue reading

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LEV Solstice Party – Dec 20th 2014

The year is drawing to a close and we are keen to party with friends and associates at the Lanark Eco-Village project.
Saturday, December 20th is a very short day followed by the longest night.  Please join us for a pot luck supper at sundown (around 5:00 pm) followed by singing, dancing and whatever other revelry we can muster.
If you haven’t had a tour of the site, let me know.  We can arrange for a walk-about before the Sun sets.
We have a room (possibly two) available.
If you are interested in joining us for a season or a generation, let’s talk.
As the snow again covers the ground, all the garlic is planted, we have a big supply of soil mix ready for indoor Spring planting, the rhubarb has received a layer of manure, there is a new roof on Tim’s trailer and the tool tent has been taken down.  Almost all other pre-winter tasks are under control.  Let it snow – lightly.
As for our application for a zoning exception, we are down to a last negotiation with the neighbour about our right-of-way.  Once that discussion is resolved, all details will be in line and the prospects look good for getting the go ahead to design and build.
Imagine: a dwelling that not only heats and cools itself by design, but also has the means of providing its inhabitants with all their nutritional needs.  The systems needed for doing this have been proven, our goal is to demonstrate them with a building that can house fifteen to twenty people in a combination of private spaces and shared facilities.  Help us make it happen.
Vision and Purpose
What We Can Build
I’m looking forward to writing about the Eco-Village possibility and spreading the vision broadly, once the zoning is in place.  (To date almost all outreach has been word of mouth.)  As our times evolve, there are more and more people interested in how we might live well in the years ahead.
Meanwhile, the days are getting shorter and we need to get together and help each other counteract the effects of diminishing light and cooling weather.
My partner Claire and I and the other villagers (Gail, Michael, Greg, Tim & Robin) hope you can join us for this Solstice night and that your holiday season ushers you into the time of expanding days and gathering hope.
Yours, Mike and Claire
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July 18 2014 Members Meeting

Here is the Schedule and Agenda

Friday July 18 2014

Afternoon – Help with the firewood if you are available. Arrange with Mike for further details.

5:30PM Meditation
6:00PM Pot Luck Supper

After Supper – Meeting
Facilitator: Pat
Minute Taker – Steve or Tim – TBD

Reading of June 2014 minutes

  • zoning
  •  yurt
  • business plan
  • Not for Profit Incorporation – See the Ontario Not For Profit Incorporators Handbook posted here: Not for Profit Incorporators Handbook (Ontario)
  • nomenclature – for LEV transactions. Please see the following pages on the website
  •  House occupancy
  • Construction Planning – Schedule and Priorities
  • Discussion of Life Money Illusion -selections- (Optional)
    • Buddist economy p. 295
    • Meaningful work for all – Reframing Efficiency p. 226
    • LETS, as we have somewhat playfully explored Leavens…
    • Rudolf Steiner p. 319
  • Next members meeting
  • Check out
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July 2014 Open House

Lanark Eco-Village Open House
July 5th, 2014

Gardening season is in full swing and we have much to show.
There will be much more to see come July 5th.  We hope you can join us.

Hoping that the Spring is unfolding well for you.

Yours, Mike N.,  for Lanark Eco-Village

Open House Schedule:

July 5th, 2014

2:00 Tour of the site and vision
4:00 Listening/Speaking circle on community, hopes, dreams, concerns and the tuture
6:00 Pot Luck supper
7:30 Informal social with music, dance and/or . . .

You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.
— Buckminister Fuller.

We aim to build one of those models.
Will you join us?

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June 9 2014 Members Meeting

The LEV Members’ Meeting for  Monday June 9 will include the following:

For those on the Residency Meeting Planning Committee, our meeting is at 10:30 a.m.
Pot Luck lunch for those who can make it.

1:30 [optional] Meditation

2:00 Meeting

  •  Check in
  •  Minutes
    • Agenda
       Consensus decision making
    •  A Seven Generation Community
    •  Zoning update
    • Open House – July 5th ?
    • Second storage container
    • Yurt
      • need to have air circulation
      • construction planning
  •  Other work projects
  • Insurance fee schedule
  • Kids Camp – reschedule – August 23rd ?
  • Naming the building as described in the Zoning Exception application
  • Hosting for Transition Perth’s Garden Tour July 27th
  • Brother Sun Sister Moon – video to watch
  • New Agenda Items
    • Order of Agenda
  •  Next meeting
  • Check out  

Also, please note that our membership year began April 1st.  Some members have already renewed for 2014.  If you have not, please consider bringing your membership fee ($60) to the Open House/Members’ Meeting this weekend, or mail it to:

Gail Walker
2799 McDonalds Corners Rd.
Lanark, Ontario  K0G 1K0

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May 2014 Open House and Members’ Meeting

Spring has finally arrived!  One can walk almost everywhere in running shoes; the few exceptions being the low lying areas where water remains in slowly shrinking puddles.  In the garden are carrots and parsnips that came through the winter in good shape to eat.  The soil is bursting forth with garlic, rhubarb, and nettle.  The leeks that will give us seed this year made it through the winter and iris, poppies and several types of day lilies are reaching up to catch sunshine.  Lettuce, peas and spinach are in the ground and our window sills are graced with little tomato plants, celery, hot and sweet peppers, leeks, basil, arugula and some blue berry cuttings taking root.  Many other types of seed are waiting their turns to sprout as we enter the growing season.

New growth is evident everywhere, and not least important is the continuing unfolding of Lanark Eco-Village itself.  To nurture this growth we hold regular Open Houses, the next being on Saturday, May 10th.  We hope you will be able to join us to see for yourself and to discuss the possibility of self-sustaining community.

Open House Schedule, Saturday, May 10th:

2:00 Tour of the site
4:00 Listening Circle
6:00 Pot luck supper
7:30 Social with home grow music. Bring an instrument if you like.
Times after the tour are approximate.

The LEV Members’ Meeting is at 10:00 am on Sunday, May 11th.  The draft agenda is as follows:

  • Invoice for Environmental Impact Assessment
  • A Seven Generations Community?
  • Zoning application: before or after Municipal Election?
  • Zoning for Yurt
  • Scale of new building
  • Water system
  • Non-paying members
  • Rationalizing various web pages


Also, please note that our membership year began April 1st.  Some members have already renewed for 2014.  If you have not, please consider bringing your membership fee ($60) to the Open House/Members’ Meeting this weekend, or mail it to:

Gail Walker
2799 McDonalds Corners Rd.
Lanark, Ontario  K0G 1K0




Scenes from the Spring

Sap collection, April 2014

Boiling down to syrup



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April 2014 Open House and Members’ Meeting

This Sunday, April 13, Lanark Eco-Village is opening its windows to the spring air and its doors to friends, members, and the interested public.  Please come meet the people involved in building a sustainable rural community, find out what we’re trying to achieve and how we’re going about it, and even contribute your own suggestions and ideas.

We have a special event to start this month: Anthony Durant, who visited last fall and talked with us about wild healing plants and fungus, has agreed to join us again.  This time he is giving us his take on who we are and what we can do on a deep spiritual and energetic level to explore our role as humans in the cosmic dance.  Our relationship with nature is key to how we experience our lives and the unfolding of personal and world events.  Anthony will follow the questions and desires of the group to bring light to some ancient and newly unfolding mysteries of the universe from microcosm to macrocosm.  Weather permitting, an exploration of the nearby woods and helpful fungi will be possible as well.

Anthony’s presentation begins at 10:00am, and is followed by a Pot Luck lunch at 12:30pm.  We hope you will be able to join us.

The Open House itself begins at 2:00pm with a tour of the site, with time for questions and answers.  At 4:00pm we will have a Listening Circle to discuss thoughts, feelings, hopes and concerns about community, the world and the future.  Each participant gets to speak without interruption, encouraging us all to listen to the wisdom of others.  Communication like this is a rare opportunity and what we hear and learn this way is always interesting.

There will be a Pot Luck Dinner at 6:30pm, followed by socializing.  Bring a musical instrument if you are so inclined, or simply come and raise your voice in song!


Also this weekend, our normal monthly Members’ Meeting.  If you are a member of LEV, want to be, or simply would like to observe how we plan our… development? growth? perhaps unfolding is the most appropriate term– then please come at 2:00pm Saturday April 12.  We intend to discuss:

  1. Incorporating as a Not-for-Profit
  2. Status of our submission to the Township for a Zoning Exception
  3. Yurts and other four-season tiny housing possibilities
  4. Residency assessment procedures
  5. “Privileged Mode” sessions: status, feedback, Q&A
  6. Summer Kids’ Camp
  7. Kitchen extension

Other items may yet appear.  Please contact Mike Nickerson if you wish to add anything.

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March 2014 Members Meeting

The next Members’ meeting will be on Sunday afternoon, March 2nd.  It is the same date as Perth’s Seedy Sunday (10:00 am – 4:00 pm, 26 Beckwith St.E).  Several of us will be going into town that morning to participate in the seed exchange.  Then we’ll come back for a pot-luck lunch and the meeting.  One doesn’t have to be a member to sit in on the meeting.

The topics below include:

  1. Musings on building possibilities,
  2. One Thing Changes All Else, a link to a recent posting from our educational non-profit,
  3. Next Members’ Meeting and Open House,
  4. Invitation to a Cattail Weaving Workshop, and
  5. The Bean Ceremony.

There won’t be an Open House this time.  However, if any of you are looking for an opportunity to see what is here, before the snow melts, give me a call or send an email and we can arrange a time for a walk-about and conversation.    (613) 482-1208

– Cattail Weaving Workshop:

While the leaves were coming off the trees last Fall, Michael G. and I went to the local cattail swamp and gathered up a bunch of their long leaves.  Sometime in the next few weeks, we will weave with them.

I’ve woven such material on several occasions and intend to make myself a big umbrella hat so that its shade will follow me around the garden this Summer.  We have enough material for four people and I’ll enjoy both showing whoever is interested the tricks I’ve learned and seeing what you might do with the medium.

– The Bean Ceremony:

As the planting season approaches, we plan to organize a bean ceremony.  The specific timing will be to accommodate the six or seven participants for whom we have room this year.  Three of the places are presently spoken for.

The plan is to put a variety of bean seeds on a wet blotter to germinate.  Sitting and watching while the seeds swell up, quicken and eventually push out a root, is an extraordinary experience.  It is a potent antidote to the modern trap of ever-changing stimulation, which distracts us from the natural world.  Anyone completing the ceremony will forever after have a revolutionary new relationship with every seed they plant.

Musings on building:

Joseph Campbell is known for identifying patterns in mythologies from around the world.  When he said: “The goal of life is to make your heartbeat match the beat of the universe, to match your nature with Nature,” he encapsulated a moving force in the Eco-Village dream.

As I walked through the building area the other day I imagined our building emerging from the trees and clay right there, and straw from nearby.  Organizing those local resources to stand up, encompassing abundant living space, is the intent.  The day was as cold as this winter, but I got a sense of the warmth that we will be able to capture in that space.

Even now, when the Sun shines, my room above the shop doesn’t need a fire.  We could be looking out of the community building with the Sun shining in and more sunlight bouncing in off the snow to maintain a comfortable abode.  Any supplementary heat needed in the darkest of times could first be run through soups and stews, showers and hot tubs.  We could even fire a kiln making plates and mugs before letting the heat dissipate into the living areas.  With substantial cob (sand, clay and straw) partitions thoroughly separating accommodations, the warmth from the days would be carried into the night in the same way that the cool of Summer nights would be carried into the days.

A friend recently sent this amazing video showing the construction of a big cob house – 10,000 sq. ft. big.  (We’re only looking at 7,000 sq. ft.).  While the narrator seems a bit hyped about what is, without such comment, sufficiently awe-inspiring to be worth watching, it will give you a sense of what is possible simply by taking materials from underfoot, mixing them with straw and working them into useful shapes.   (Beware the advertisements.  You can skip them by pulling the time tracker forward until you see the building again.)  For the project here, extracting the necessary clay and sand will leave a big hole not far from the building, in which we can swim and on which we could skate, as the seasons allow.

 Which of us will be in the new space in the years ahead? 

– One Thing Changes All Else is a recent post from our educational non- profit.  It explains the fundamental change that has to be understood to make effective decisions in this new era.

The 7th Generation Initiative, from which the Eco-Village project is emerging, has existed as a not-for-profit entity since 1985.  In turn, it was a phoenix rising from the Institute for the Study of Cultural Evolution.

If you want, you can get updates here:

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January 2014 Open House and Members’ Meeting

LEV Film (Saturday Jan 18) , Presentation (Sunday Jan 19)

Open House and Members’ Meeting
Unique to this month is a film showing and discussion around Nassim Haramein’s production “Crossing the Event Horizon” in the evening on Saturday. and a presentation and discussion with Anita Pain who trained with Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project after the Members’ Meeting on Sunday.Saturday, January 18th 2014 Open House

2:00 Tour of the site.  This will likely be miniimal unless everyone brings snow shoes.  Nevertheless, we can show you the basic layout of the land and can discuss it further at,
3:00 Questions and answers about the Lanark Eco-Village project.
4:00 Listening Circle: An opportunity for everyone to share, without interruption, their ideas, interests, visions and concerns about Eco-Village and the world.
6:00 Pot luck supper
7:30 Film and discussion: “Crossing the Event Horizon.”
Sunday, January 19th Member’s Meeting

Meditation – Prayer tree  -( 11:30)
-Noon pot luck lunch
1:00 Members’ Meeting
– Check in
– Minutes
– Additional habitation  –  Cabin – Yurts
– Use of house –
– Accounts update for 2013
– Garden tasks
– Results of the Survey we did December 23.
– Zoning Envt assessment report.
– Not for Profit Incorporation
– ‘Stuff’
– Scheduling events in time for notices
– Kids Camp
– WWOOFers
– New Agenda Items
– Next meeting
– Check out

4:00 Presentation and discussion:  Climate reality presentation and discussion with Anita Payne who trained with Al Gore.
6:30 Pot luck supper following the discussion.

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December 2013 Update

Here is an update and photo essay from Mike Nickerson about the goings on at the
Lanark Ecovillage Project:


We hope your 2013 was a great year, and we are looking forward to all the exciting new developments 2014 will bring.

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