Transforming Agriculture, Perennially

Prairie Festival

Prairie Festival in 2021 canceled

Due to COVID-19 resurgence and growing uncertainty


We have spent early August reflecting on Prairie Festival 2021, considering the ever-changing context we find ourselves in this year. We believe it is in the best interest of our guests, staff, and the local community to cancel the Prairie Festival again this year.

The value of the Prairie Festival is part mind and part body. The experience seeps into you through the dust settling on your skin, the wind whistling hot one day and cool the next, the cicada and bird song in the air, and the emergent interaction of people, plants, and community. For The Land Institute, it is an opportunity to offer hospitality and challenging ideas to our constituency. However, the richness of the Prairie Festival is dually challenged by the immense uncertainty of the pandemic and the priority to build a global movement with the urgency of climate change.

While it saddens us to forego yet another year of critical thought and “intellectual hootenanny,” to quote Kathryn Shattuck in the New York Times, we already imagine how sweet, delicious, and fulfilling Prairie Festival 2022 will be. So save the date now for September 23-25, 2022! Sign up for our newsletter at the bottom of our home page to stay updated on our latest news and happenings.






Rachel Stroer

President, The Land Institute


View Previous Prairie Festival Presentations

Videos of talks and presentations from previous Prairie Festivals can be viewed in our Video & Audio Library. To see the most recent speakers, visit  2019 speaker presentations on our YouTube channel.

For information on visiting The Land Institute, including driving directions, local accommodations, and more, or if you can’t make it to the Prairie Festival but would like to visit The Land Institute, we can arrange for a tour at other times of the year, check out the Visit Us page of our website.

About Prairie Festival

The first Prairie Festival took place in 1979 on Sam and Terry Evans’ farm near Salina, Kansas, with David Brower as the featured speaker. Since then, our signature annual public event has drawn thousands of attendees from around the world.

Held over the last full weekend of September along the banks of the Smoky Hill River on The Land Institute’s home campus outside Salina, Kansas, the festival revolves around “low tech” presentations by notable guests in The Land Institute’s Big Barn.

The Prairie Festival offers a unique opportunity to interact with some of the world’s most compelling authors, thinkers, artists, and advocates focused on agriculture, food, the environment, science, sustainability, and social and environmental justice.

Our science staff provides tours and an in-depth update on our plant breeding and ecology work and partnerships. There’s great food and music, the Hedge Fire Circle, and always a few surprises. Join us for what The New York Times called an “intellectual hootenanny” and what has become a remarkable can’t-miss event on the prairie.

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