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Authors' Sunday at the LeDuc Historic Estate

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Friends of LeDuc of Historic Hastings and Dakota County Historical Society are pleased to announce that Atina Diffley, author, farmer, and organic farming advocate, will be the presenter at the LeDuc Historic Estate, 1629 Vermillion Street, Hastings, On Sunday, April 14, 1 p.m.

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This event is free and the public is invited to attend.  Refreshments will be served.  In addition to Diffley's presentation at the LeDuc Historic Estate, she will also be giving a free presentation at the Lawshe Memorial Museum in South St. Paul on Thursday, April 15, at 7 p.m.

The author explains what motivates her to write, discusses details of her writing craft and style, reads passages from her book, signs and sells her books.

Diffley is an organic farmer and consultant (Organic Farming Works LLC,) public speaker, and author of the 2012 memoir, "Turn Here, Sweet Corn: Organic Farming Works."  From 1985 to 2008, she and her husband Martin ran the Gardens of Eagan, an urban-edge, organic vegetable farm, which he started in 1973.  She is the co-author and lead trainer for "Wholesale Success: A Farmer's Guide to Selling, Postharvest Handling" and "Packing Produce."

Land use issues have been a central point of entry for Atina's  organic advocacy.  In 1989, the fifth-generation Diffley family land was lost to suburban development.  The Diffleys collaborated with filmmaker Helen DeMichiel to create the award-winning documentary, "Turn Here, Sweet Corn: The Video."  Filmed on the Diffley land in Eagan and in the surrounding community, the video focuses on the loss of greenbelt farmlands to suburbia.

The Diffleys started over on new land, but faced eminent domain again in 2006 when threatened by a crude oil pipeline owned by Koch Industries.  The Diffleys intervened as legal parties in the route proceeding and eventually succeeded in creating an Organic Mitigation Plan that provides protection for the soil and certification of threatened organic farms in Minnesota. More information about Diffley is available at www.atinadiffley.com.

In 2008 the Diffleys sold the Gardens of Eagan name to the Wedge Community Co-op.  The Wedge -- operated as Gardens of Eagan -- continues to provide organic produce to the local community.  The Diffley's on-farm projects now include breeding of sweet corn cultivars, mentoring beginning farmers and transitioning conventional land to organic.

For further information see www. dakotahistory.org or call 651-437-7055.

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