Details for Attendees

We’re thrilled that you’re joining us for the 26th Annual Spring Conference. Here are some details to get you prepared. You should have received all of this by email but if for some reason you didn’t you can find it all here. If you have any further questions that are not answered here, check out our FAQs page or call us at (828) 214-7833.

ONLINE Registration for 2019 Spring Conference is now closed.

ONSITE Registration is available all weekend at Mars Hill University. Starting at 7:30 am each morning, both Saturday and Sunday.

Friday Pre-Conference Workshops

March 8, 2019
Cost: $55 with regular conference registration; $70 without. Pre-registration is required.
Please note: There is NO walk-in, on-site, or day-of registration for Friday Pre-conference Workshops.

Find all the descriptions for the pre-conference workshops here and the bios for our 2019 guest speakers here.

  • Finding, Buying, & Loving the Land— Site Assessment & Land Design for Farmers, Homesteaders, & Land Seekers with Peter Bane in Mills River, NC. ATTENDEE DETAILS ARE HERE. 
  • Year Round Growing on Farm & Garden with Pam Dawling & Ira Wallace in Arden, NC. ATTENDEE DETAILS ARE HERE. 

  • Integrated Animal Agriculture—Incorporating Livestock into your Farm & Homestead with Meredith Leigh in Alexander, NC. ATTENDEE DETAILS ARE HERE. 

  • Water & Agriculture—Critical Consciousness for Healing the Planet with John & Jonathan Todd in Mills River, NC. ATTENDEE DETAILS ARE HERE. 

Weekend Conference (Saturday & Sunday)

March 9-10, 2019
Mars Hill University, Mars Hill, NC


Online registration closes on Wednesday, March 6, 2019 at 11:59 p.m. Walk-in, on-site, day-of registration is available all day Saturday and Sunday at Mars Hill University. No pre-registrations are required for the weekend workshops (with the exception of the half day workshops which you must sign up for and pay a materials fee of $10 extra). Workshops are filled on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please arrive early to get your spot or plan to go to your second or third choice. 

Please NOTE the New Venue for 2019!

The 26th Annual OGS Spring Conference will be at a NEW venue in 2019! We’re thrilled to be moving to Mars Hill University for our 26th Annual Spring Conference! Mars Hill University is just 20 minutes north of downtown Asheville, with easy access off of Exit 11 from 26. Benefits of this campus include:
  • FREE and easy parking
  • Larger classroom sizes
  • More centralized indoor location for exhibitors and registration
  • More food vendor options
  • And best of all, MORE AFFORDABLE (which as a non-profit really helps keep our expenses down and registration costs low.)

We look forward to see you all at Mars Hill University. Google map – directions to Mars Hill – OGS Spring Conference Map. For extended details and a campus map, including building locations and parking lots, click here.

Directions & Parking

Directions for Mars Hill University (where the WEEKEND events will be happening; please note, each pre-conference workshop is held in a different location) are detailed below. OGS volunteers will be on-site to direct you to appropriate parking. For extended details and a campus map, including building locations and parking lots, click here.

From Asheville:

  • Take Highway 19-23 (Future Interstate 26) north approximately 18 miles to Mars Hill.
  • Take Exit 11 and turn left off the on-ramp onto NC Hwy 213/Carl Eller Road.
  • Travel approximately 1 mile onto the campus of Mars Hill University.

From Johnson City:

  • Take Interstate 26 south approximately 42 miles to Mars Hill. (At the North Carolina line, Interstate 26 becomes Hwy 19-23/Future I-26).
  • Take Exit 11 and turn left off the on-ramp onto NC Hwy 213/Carl Eller Road.
  • Travel approximately 1 mile onto the campus of Mars Hill University.


Check-in starts at 7:30am at Ferguson Math & Sciences building. We will have your name tag and the revised conference schedule waiting for you. There will be signs to help guide you to parking, classes, and more. Look for the OGS logo. Remember to check in – you must have your name tag with you to attend workshops


MHU has many parking areas which are spread out around the campus and include on-street options. Give yourself some extra time to navigate parking and walking to Ferguson Math & Sciences building for check-in. Attendees may park anywhere in the immediate campus area except in lots otherwise marked as Reserved.

***PLEASE NOTE: MHU has TWO buildings called ‘Ferguson’. We are using Ferguson Math & Science building ONLY – located on the northside of NC 213 (Cascade Street). We ARE NOT using Ferguson Health Sciences Center across the road.


Box lunch orders MUST BE RECEIVED by Monday, March 4th at NOON (to order return to registration page HERE, check the box that says, “I’ve already registered and want to add something” and select your order). If you pre-order a lunch box, it will be available for pick up at 12:30 on the upper quad just off College Street near Spilman Hall and the flagpole.

Food vendors serving healthy, local, and nutritious food will be available for breakfast/snacks (exhibitor area and near Day Hall), lunch (food trucks on College Street in front of Day Hall), and dinner (at Saturday Social) on Saturday and for breakfast and lunch on Sunday.  

Check out the OGS Spring Conference Map for our “Organic Meet-Ups”: designated eating areas in Day Hall for Farmers, Gardeners, and Homesteaders to eat alongside folks who grow like you do!


Our Exhibit Hall will be open all day Saturday and Sunday. Check out our 2019 EXHIBITOR LIST and plan your visit. Exhibits are located on three levels of the beautiful Ferguson Math & Sciences Atrium. Visit the trade show to deepen learning, and purchase tools, seeds, snacks, equipment, and more!


Visit our Schedule page for the most up-to-date version. Class changes and cancellations during the weekend will be posted on the Exhibit Hall and Day Hall message boards. PLEASE NOTE: classes may fill up, so arrive early if you have your heart set on a class and/or move on to your next choice if your first choice is full. Most (but not all!) classes are repeated in the same track and timeslot on Saturday and Sunday to help address this issue.

BUCHI BREW & CHEW: A Free Party!

5:30–7:30pm Saturday at Wren Student Union

Kick back and relax with your fellow farmers and gardeners over Buchi and snacks! Keep the conversation flowing and farm inspiration growing. Enter to win raffle prizes, sample Buchi’s line of locally fermented flavors, and mix up your own specialty concoction at the Buchi + Gaia Herbal Elixir Bar! (Mars Hill is a ‘dry’ campus and beer will not be available at the social). Tasty empanadas and more will be available for purchase from Cecilia’s Kitchen.


The weather can be unpredictable! Please come prepared with a winter coat and rain gear so you can stay comfortable walking around the campus! Help minimize waste by bringing your own mug for drinks, and utensils for lunch.


Network: MHUwireless Wifi
Password: mhillwireless


Be sure to tag @organicgrowersschool and #ogsspringconf in your social media posts to get entered into a raffle for an OGS Shirt (size of your choice!) and tote bag to rock the weekend of! We’ll announce the winner by sharing your post on social media on Sunday afternoon — you can come pick up your shirt & tote bag at the OGS booth in the Exhibit Hall.


Updated lodging options are available on the OGS lodging website HERE.


Registration for the OGS Spring Conference is non-refundable. The conference will be held rain, snow or shine. If you are unable to attend, we will be happy to send you documentation so that your registration fee can be recorded as a tax-deductible contribution to the ongoing work of the Organic Growers School. The only exception is if you register for a half-day workshop, are notified that it is full, and choose not to attend another workshop.


Registration at an OGS event means that you grant us the right to use your photograph, video and voice recordings or likeness, with or without your name, for publicity and educational purposes for Organic Growers School.


The OGS Spring Conference is geared towards adults. If you are registering your mature teenager (over the age of 12) please know that their behavior must mirror adult behavior in the classrooms and on site. All minors must be accompanied by an adult at this event.


If you have any further questions check out our FAQs page or email our Spring Conference staff, at