Orange County $aves
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7th Annual Orange County Saves:
Eco-Nomic Living Expo
Features Chef David Bearl
of the University of Florida
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

On Saturday, February 1, 2014 Orange County UF/IFAS Extension will host its seventh Annual Eco-Nomic Living Expo. This year we are pleased to welcome Chef David Bearl as our closing keynote speaker. Chef Bearl is the Statewide Coordinator for Culinary Education for UF/IFAS and FDACS Florida Farm to School Partnership. He is extremely involved in both the Farm to School and Farm to Table programs. During his 35-year professional career, Chef Bearl has earned the American Culinary Federation’s Certified Culinary Educator and Certified Chef de Cuisine credentials. In 2010, he was inducted into the American Academy of Chefs.

The opening session, entitled "Creating Urban Landscapes to Conserve Biodiversity", will be presented by Dr. Mark Hostetler from the Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation at the University of Florida. With over twenty years of experience in urban wildlife issues and natural resource management, Dr. Hostetler conducts research and outreach on how urban landscapes could be designed and managed, from small to large scales, to conserve biodiversity

Following the general opening session, participants can attend up to four 25-minute educational workshops. Renowned gardening expert Tom MacCubbin will teach two sessions, including "Edible Landscapes" and "Gardening with Tom". Other workshops include: "Bringing Biodiverse Conservation to Your Home Landscape", "Gardening 'Off The Grid'", "The Best Family Time is Kitchen Time", "Local Food Systems in Central Florida", "Improve Your Financial Stability: Successful Saving Strategies", "Meats from Local Farms to Your Plate", "Florida’s Water Quality & You", "Landscape for Less $$$", "Cooking with Cool Season Crops" and "Successful Butterfly Gardens". Vendors will be on site to share their products and new technologies related to sustainability.

Orange County Master Gardeners will also be on hand at their Mobile Plant Clinic to answer homeowners gardening questions. The Expo will conclude with a free "Adopt-A-Tree" event sponsored by Orange County government.

The Eco-Nomic Living Expo has won national and regional awards in the areas of environmental education and program marketing. The program seeks to provide research based solutions to real world problems. Topics addressed include sustainability, local food production, water conservation, financial management, and landscaping. The goal of the Eco-Nomic Living Expo is to motivate participants to develop habits that will have a low impact on the environment; and to help participants understand how to incorporate "sustainable" living and make it a lifestyle choice.

UF/IFAS Extension Service in Orange County is the local affiliate of UF/IFAS Extension. University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension is a federal-state-county partnership dedicated to developing knowledge in agriculture, human and natural resources, and the life sciences, and enhancing and sustaining the quality of human life by making that information accessible. While extending into every community of the state, UF/IFAS Extension has developed an international reputation for its accomplishments in teaching, research and extension.