Session 1: May 17-20, weekend before Memorial Day
Session 2: May 24-27, Memorial Day weekend
Session 3: August 30-September 2, Labor Day weekend
Three times a year women from many backgrounds of life gather together in great celebration for four full days of inspiring Herbal and Sustainability classes, gourmet vegetarian meals, talented campfire capers, amazing handcrafted marketplace items, Rites-of-Passage Ceremonies, powerful campfire drumming and dancing, refreshing swimming hole dips, and conversations with remarkable & inspiring womyn!
We meet together under the ancient oaks, Doug firs, and bay trees of Northern California. Our main gathering area is encircled by sixteen tipis with a large fire pit in the center. All classes are held sitting on the ground under these majestic trees, or under shade tarps that we have set-up. At night we camp together, either in the tipis or in tents that we each bring.
During the days we are a gathering of women and children studying, teaching, learning, networking, and talking about plants, healing, and healthy lifestyles. When the sun goes down we become a playful and celebratory group, chatting, chanting, singing, showing off our talents, drumming and dancing into the night around the campfire.
We are a group of 350-400 women and children and we gather to learn from each other, to nurture and nourish each other, to take a break from our daily lives, to regenerate, refresh, dance, frolic, talk plants, and most of all, to have a REALLY GOOD THYME together!
Each session is a separate event. Do join us for one, two, or all sessions!
ASL interpretation is available upon request with advanced notice.
We meet at Black Oak Ranch in Laytonville, California, in Mendocino County, a beautiful site nestled among the native trees and home to Wavy Gravy’s circus and performing arts children’s Camp Winnarainbow. There are wild areas to explore here and two natural creeks that come together, offering excellent and refreshing dipping holes.
Classes & Intensives
Over 45 classes are offered throughout each session, including several four-hour intensives, covering many different aspects of Herbalism and sustainable lifestyles. Topics include: Aromatherapy, Ayurveda, Chinese Medicine, Flower Essences, Herb Walks, Herbal Crafts, Herbal Cultivation & Propagation, Magical Herbs, Herbal Treatments for Specific Disorders, Women’s Health, and much more. Session 3 also offers Sustainable Living classes, including: Alternative Vehicle Fuels, Natural Building Techniques, Permaculture, Solar Energy, and much more.
Each session offers different classes and different teachers.
The majority of our teachers are Northern California women doing remarkable work in their field. We search out local women whose herbal and sustainability work is admired and appreciated.
Work Exchange and Scholarships
Several Work Exchange positions and Scholarships are available for women unable to pay the full regular registration fee. See Work Exchange and Scholarship pages for details.
Cost and Payment
Please click on each session's registration link for cost. Fees are on a sliding scale. This fee includes all classes, meals, camping, and events. The sliding scale is designed to provide access to women of all income levels. We depend upon a percentage of high paying participants in order to meet the budget. We expect women with access to money to pay the full fee. Please be honest. There are a limited number of spaces for young women, ages 12-20 and Elders, ages 60 and over at a special rate if needed. Please go to each session's link for pricing.
If you cancel: If you cancel before May 1st for the Spring Sessions and August 1st for Fall Session, we will refund your full registration minus a $25.00 processing fee. If you need to cancel after this date, you will need to find your own replacement and work out the finances directly with her. No refunds, transfers or credits are available after these dates.
All requests for refunds must be in writing (email is sufficient). No exceptions.
If we cancel: NCWHS has full intentions of holding each Session rain or shine. However, in the event that we are forced to cancel before May 10th for Spring Sessions or before August 10th for Fall session, we will refund as much of the registration fee as possible, to be determined at that time. If it becomes necessary for us to cancel after these dates we may be unable to refund any of the registration fee.
This year we we will continue the practice of using wristbands. Everyone will be expected to wear her wristband all weekend and anyone found without one, will be asked to leave. To honor ourselves, each other, the kitchen and the organizers it has become necessary to monitor in such a way. Thank you for understanding.
We will gather at Black Oak Ranch in Laytonville, California (Mendocino County)
If you have any questions please email us:
NCWHS@monitor.net or call 707-824-1429
We look forward to hearing from you!
We are beyond excited to see you!
Much Love To Everyone!
Terri Tall Tree
Copperwoman the Technowitch
Linda the Magnificent
High Crone Jill (from Heaven)
Beloved Cronnies Linnie & Stephanie
The Rockin’ Kitchen Crew
Tea Whisperer Julie & Team
Our Precious Childcare
Our Honored Teachers
And everyone at NCWHS
There will be an Indigenous Land Acknowledgement on Friday evening of both Sessions in recognition and appreciation of those who’s land we gather on.
Women of Color Rising: Intentional Space for Women Of Color at NCWHS
Since 1991, NCWHS has been creating space to celebrate womanhood through reclaiming women’s sacred wisdom, ritual, and herbal knowledge predominantly in the Western European traditions. From the beginning, NCWHS has included women from many different traditions, although the majority attending have generally been of European heritage. In 2019, we began an open conversation about race, and that work continues. Just as we—as women—have created intentional space for ourselves to come together and heal, in 2023, we will be creating intentional space for women of color within the Symposium, a safe space within a safe space, and are excited to deepen our awareness of how we all can best support racial and ethnic diversity, inclusion and belonging for all members of our community.
A deep bow of Gratitude to Aya de Leon, Shereel Washington, Naomi Stein, and Susannah Mackintosh for creating and leading us in this.
Anti-Jewish sentiment and hate crimes are at an all time high in the U.S. NCWHS is a safe space for all women and will be creating a safe space within the safe space for all Jewish women to come together for Shabbat and Havdalah rituals, as well as classes to learn and share cultural plant knowledge. Jewish women of all levels of knowledge and connection to the community are warmly welcome to all events. Any woman wanting to learn more about Jewish cultures are welcome to join us for the classes and the Havdalah rituals on Saturday nights (Shabbat will be specifically for Jewish women to meet and connect).
In our efforts to be more welcoming and inclusive to women from diverse backgrounds this year we will doing the following.
At Session 2
We will have designated space for women of color (WOC).
Throughout the weekend, WOC can opt-in to a WOC only camping area and a WOC eating area.
WOC are also invited to come in early, on Thursday May 25, to ground together on the land before Symposium opens (WOC please email us if you'd like to do this at: firstname.lastname@example.org).
We will also have a panel/workshop titled: Sprouting Liberation: Courageous Conversations around Race, Ethnicity, and Belonging at NCWHS to which all are welcome and encouraged to attend!
At Both Session 1 and Session 2
There will be a ritual and sharing space for Jewish women during Shabbat and Havdalah on Saturday afternoon.
At Both Session 1 and Session 2
We will hold a class geared for white women titled: Hey White People Let’s Talk About Race.