Mqt Climber’s Co-op offers workshops

Photo+courtesy+of+Marquette+Climbers+Cooperative+%0ADOWN+AND+DIRTY%C2%AD%C2%AD%E2%80%94Community+members+gather+in+the+Marquette+Climber%E2%80%99s+Cooperative+greenhouse+on+Saturday%2C+Jan.+25+to+learn+about+sustainable+gardening.+Senior+biology+major+Bryce+DeMers%2C+member+of+the+co-op+refers+to+the+text%2C+%E2%80%9CThe+Rocket+Mass+Heater+Builder%E2%80%99s+Guide%E2%80%9D+when+explaining+the+greenhouse+dynamic.+The+rocket+mass+heater+they+use+is+a+space+heating+system+expanded+from+a+type+of+efficient+wood+burning+stove%2C+the+rocket+stove.+

Photo courtesy of Marquette Climbers Cooperative DOWN AND DIRTY­­—Community members gather in the Marquette Climber’s Cooperative greenhouse on Saturday, Jan. 25 to learn about sustainable gardening. Senior biology major Bryce DeMers, member of the co-op refers to the text, “The Rocket Mass Heater Builder’s Guide” when explaining the greenhouse dynamic. The rocket mass heater they use is a space heating system expanded from a type of efficient wood burning stove, the rocket stove.

Adan Mulvaney

Earthy tones and a fresh scent seeps out of the floorboards of the century old building that houses the U.P’s only permaculture housing cooperative, located in the heart of Marquette.

Some students prefer to spend their free time watching television, scrolling through social media, or taking lengthy, luxurious naps. The dedicated students of the Marquette Climber’s Cooperative (MCC), however, prefer to spend their free time working in the soon to be vibrant greenhouse connected to their house. 

The MCC is hosting a series of sustainability workshops titled “The Yoopers Guide to Gardening in Collaboration Marquette.” They kicked off the series on Saturday, Jan. 25 with the first workshop, “Envisioning Your Alt. Powered Greenhouse.” The remaining three meetings are on the fourth Saturday of every month.

Senior economics major Sarah Head has been a part of the MCC for two years. 

“We have five people who live at the co-op, and we’re all Northern students. Everybody who lives in the house has a role and we all share duties,” Head said. “We do chores together, we share meals together through our family grocery system. We’re all oriented towards a sustainable lifestyle, or maybe rock climbing for some of us.”

Right next to the kitchen is a bouldering cave, where those who have a passion for rock climbing spend their free time. 

The MMC is a community group that focuses on minimal waste, recycling and educating about climate change. The co-op is running a composting initiative open to the community to encourage recycling. Collecting used or excess coffee grounds from Dead River Coffee Roasters, the students introduce the coffee as a fertilizer for the soil through composting.

“We give out five gallon bins for community members and students to collect their own compost at home. They bring it to us, we process their compost and give them a new bucket. It’s a great way to cut down on waste and it helps us fertilize our garden,” Head said.

“The workshops aim to educate the Marquette community about gardening, and allow the community to get more involved in environmental preservation,” Head said.

The first workshop topic discussed how to heat a greenhouse using an alternative methods. The group is using a rocket mass heater in order to create a controlled burn to generate heat. However, their heater is currently not in use as they are still working on getting it up to code for the health department. 

In addition to the completion of the rocket mass heater, the MCC has plans to install rainwater harvesting barrels and expand their flower beds over the next year.