Mother’s 1979 Self-Reliance Seminars

1 / 4
The dedicated students at the three-day earth-sheltered homes seminar stayed in class until 8:00 every night!
2 / 4
Learning self-reliance doesn't necessarily mean forsaking all modern conveniences. A set of amazing Megamex wood-burning water heaters kept our hardworking pupils supplied with soothing hot showers.
3 / 4
Attendees mixed some pleasure with their "business" by listening to an authentic mountain story teller, watching an engaging puppet show, clapping along with some down home music, and enjoying cookouts at an evening bonfire.
4 / 4
A lot of future "fuel fixers" got the practical know-how they needed at the one-day farmer's alcohol session.

If you missed out on week one of MOTHER EARTH NEWS’ self-reliance seminars, here’s a glimpse of the goin’s-on that filled those six days.

The days (and nights) from July 9 through 14 were, as you probably know, really exciting for all of us here at MOTHER EARTH NEWS. During that time, some 1,500 readers flocked to this magazine’s 600-plus-acre research property to attend our first-ever series of seminars.

And despite the fact that the event took place during a 10-day period that dumped half of our area’s average July rainfall on the seminar property (and on our 300 seminar campers … who responded, “So what’s a little weather!”), putting a pretty serious crimp in our construction crew’s endeavors, MOTHER EARTH NEWS Week Number One was all we could have hoped for.

Of course, those seminar attendees weren’t the only folks to learn a lot, as the days of discussions and evenings of campfires, down-home music, and so forth rolled on. Our staff and seminar instructors carefully made note of every suggestion for improvement that the “students” came up with and–before the second day of the week was over–were already incorporating those tips into their classes.

As you can imagine, at that rate the August seminars (and the September week) should be downright incredible!

Our staff members, however (who spent as much time out at the seminar site as the approaching deadline for this issue would allow), felt that the most exciting part of the whole week was the opportunity to meet with and get ideas from so many of you, the readers of this publication. You people are one fine bunch of folks!