Raising Chickens in the Backyard

Question:  Can residents raise chickens in their back yard within the city limits?  Is locally grown food less expensive or more healthy?  Are residents allowed to install wind turbines and solar panels on private property?  How can local units of government assist residents as well as their bottom line by embracing renewable energy?


Americans all across the nation are taking steps to save money on food and utilities, eat healthier, and lessen their use of our natural resources.


However, these steps can often cause problems and confusion if you live in the city limits where there are restrictions (or no restrictions) regarding roof weight loads, nuisance ordinances, or agricultural animals.


To help address these issues, we have chosen “Planning for Sustainable Trends in Food and Energy” as the theme for the 5th annual Grundy County Growth Conference (GC2), which will be Friday, October 29th, from 8:00 am to 12:30 pm at First Christian Church in Morris.


For the first time, we’ll be serving breakfast , which will be made of locally-grown foods.  While dining, we’ll be entertained by Shawna Coronado, a nationally-renowned author, blogger, and inspirational speaker who will share her story with us and show us that mental and physical health are intricately connected to being exposed to nature, greening our environment, and building community.


Two break-out sessions will focus on food.  One will be a panel discussing village codes and ordinances – can residents raise chickens in their back yard?  The other workshop will highlight the entrepreneurial side of agriculture – what are some options for starting your own food business and is there help available?


Two more break-out sessions will focus on energy.  One will show residents how they can lower their utility bills and take steps toward using renewable energy.  The other workshop will discuss village codes, ordinances, and inspections so village officials are prepared when residents request building permits for solar panels and wind turbines.


Our final session will be lead by Brook McDonald of The Conservation Foundation.  He will demonstrate the various cost- and resource-saving steps they’ve incorporated into their McDonald Farm property as well as facilitate a final “question and answer” period.


Invitations do get sent to village officials and our land use partners, but please accept this as an open invitation to the public to attend this exciting event.


Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door.  Please contact the Community Foundation of Grundy County at 941-0852 or stop by our office at 102 Liberty Street to make your reservation.


We look forward to seeing you there!




Thank you to our

2010 GC2 Sponsors

Aux Sable Liquid Products
Baxter & Woodman, Inc Consulting Engineers
Chamlin & Associates
Christopher B. Burke Engineering Ltd
Edward Jones – Kristi Bennington
Erienna Township
First Midwest Bank
GC Environmental & Resource Conservation Office
Grundy County Land Use Department
Horizon Wind Energy, LLC
Law Office of Michael Mattingly
Spaceco, Inc.
Teska Associates, Inc.
Village of Coal City
Village of Minooka