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cider fest

Megan Betz

The Bloomington Community Orchard hosted their fourth annual Cider Fest this weekend. I headed over for participant observation. Well, that and a mug of warm cider & some old-time music.

During classes this week, I had my students read Hayden & Buck's "Doing community supported agriculture: Tactile space, affect and effects of membership". It was their introduction to non-representational theory. We used the opportunity to discuss how all five senses build the landscape & enhance our relationship to place. As Haden & Buck write, following Deleuze & Guattari, "...affect is transversal force that is always being created, becoming. Affect emerges from spatially constrained mutable webs of associations and actions." Merriam-Webster defines affect as "the conscious subjective aspect of an emotion considered apart from bodily changes" and "a set of observable manifestations of a subjectively experienced emotion."

It was these two things I kept in mind while watching bodies move through the orchard, sipping cider & bending into downward-facing dog.  

A volunteer beekeeper processes the honey from the Orchard's bees, & the honey bears are given away as door prizes.

A volunteer beekeeper processes the honey from the Orchard's bees, & the honey bears are given away as door prizes.

Homemade treats & donations from local businesses were on display as other raffle prizes.

Homemade treats & donations from local businesses were on display as other raffle prizes.

Volunteers keep the cider press running nonstop. The cider is then warmed, & volunteers fill their mugs before walking around the orchard.

Volunteers keep the cider press running nonstop. The cider is then warmed, & volunteers fill their mugs before walking around the orchard.

Signs guide guests to activities around the orchard...

Signs guide guests to activities around the orchard...

...like yoga in the espalier circle...

...like yoga in the espalier circle...

...pumpkin carving & painting...

...pumpkin carving & painting...

...and grape pressing with grapes from this arbor.

...and grape pressing with grapes from this arbor.