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On March 19th at Westport Commons Farm, Cultivate KC and Missouri Organic Recycling hosted the first ever Compost Fest, a day dedicated to public education about diverting organic matter from our waste stream. Volunteers from both organizations were joined by community members and representatives from the Heartland All Species Project and Kalin Custom Homes, Inc. to accomplish the event’s first task, building out a farm-sized compost pile.
Under the direction of Kevin Anderson from Missouri Organic, chipped brush and mulched leaves were layered with fresh food waste provided by Compost Collective KC and spent grain from KC Bier Co to create a static windrow measuring roughly 40’ long and 6’ high. The only other ingredient needed in this recipe to keep the pile maintained and cooking is the occasional addition of water; thanks to the late March rains we received, our pile is currently well drenched. Once finished, Cultivate plans to use the compost as a soil amendment on our field- and possibly share some with our neighbors!
With the hard work behind us, the afternoon was free to enjoy an educational and entertaining line-up of speakers and performers. Eco Elvis, aka Matt Riggs, kicked off the program with a rousing setlist all about the importance of reducing our ecological footprint. Highlights included the crowd favorites “Let’s Go Organic,” and “Burnin’ Globe.” Following Elvis were Dan Krull and Marty Kraft providing short talks on vermicomposting, Johnson Su bioreactors, and composting with black soldier fly larvae. Adults and children alike were enthralled by the breadth of knowledge and the approachable nature of these three speakers.
Thank you to all our sponsors for the 2022 Compost Fest. We hope to see YOU at Compost Fest 2023!