Cart 0

Solstice Seaweed Connection & Wildtending • Big Sur


JUNE 20-22, 2019


Gather with Wildtender and Mercado Sagrado for a Solstice exploration of Big Sur’s intertidal zone – where rocky pools and ragged shoreline hold secret stores of wild food and medicine revealed only by the ebbing tide. Herbalists and foragers Tanya Stiller and Kelsey Barrett (Heavy Nettle) will guide us to identify, sustainably and ethically harvest, and prepare seaweeds for nourishment and healing, while supporting the tending and restoration of the dynamic kelp forest ecosystem. As we connect with the sea life along the Big Sur coast, we will renew our ancient human connection with land and sea.

In this workshop we will:

  • Learn to identify several different edible sea vegetables.

  • Learn about ethical and sustainable wild harvesting and drying techniques. Harvest and dry your own seaweed to take home.

  • Taste several types of seaweeds, cook new seaweed recipes and learn about their health benefits.

  • Learn about the dynamic state of the kelp forest ecosystem and how we can help with ongoing monitoring and restoration efforts.

We are committed to promoting ethical and sustainable guidelines around seaweed harvesting and kelp ecosystem protection. Here are some of the guidelines that will inform this workshop.


Registration for this program is through Mercado Sagrado.

$450 tuition includes:

  • Intertidal natural history and sustainable/ethical seaweed foraging instruction

  • Meals – Thursday dinner, Friday breakfast and lunch, and Saturday breakfast are all provided by Dark Horse + Sproutcraft Creamery as part of this program. (Please note that Friday dinner and Saturday lunch are not included; tickets can be purchased separately for meals on site.)

Program Details | June 20-22, 2019

This is a three day program. Activities are planned for Thursday evening, all day Friday (Summer Solstice), and concluding on Saturday by 1:00 pm. A detailed packing list will be emailed to you following registration.

The shore hiking for this class will be moderately difficult and involves the very rare danger of sneaker waves crashing into the tidal zone unexpectedly.

Thursday, June 20

5:00 - 7:00 pm

Convene at Big Sur’s Village Shops for an introduction to seaweed identification and uses / benefits for nourishment and health. Learn the tools and tricks of the trade which we will dive deeper into in the following two days.  

7:00 - 9:00 pm

Group dinner provided by Dark Horse + Sproutcraft Creamery

Friday, June 21

7:00 am - 11:00 am

Pack a take-away breakfast provided by Dark Horse + Sproutcraft Creamery. Carpool to an ocean site. Low tide is at 8:52 am, so we will have close to two hours before the low tide to explore the area and assess the ecosystem's health before choosing if and where to harvest.  

11:00 am -12:00 pm

Return to camp to learn how to dry seaweed.

12:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Learn to cook simple seaweed based recipes to enjoy with lunch, provided by Dark Horse + Sproutcraft Creamery. Afterward, time permitting, our afternoon will feature seaweed spa time.

3:00 pm on

Free time to explore Big Sur, rest at camp, or connect at the Village Shops. Tickets can be purchased separately for dinner by Dark Horse + Sproutcraft Creamery.

Saturday, June 22

7:00am - 1:00 pm

Pack a take-away breakfast provided by Dark Horse + Sproutcraft Creamery. Carpool to a different ocean location in Big Sur with a unique variety of seaweeds to identify and explore. Return to camp to try more recipes for food, health and beauty. Workshop concludes before lunch.

Meet your guides

Tanya Stiller

Tanya Stiller has been an herbalist for twenty-five years, and teaches ethnobotany, seaweed harvesting, foraging, and homesteading through organizations like the Ohlone Center for Herbal Studies, Ancestral Apothecary, and the Institute of Urban Homesteading.  She spends her days teaching gardening and nutrition classes to children and studying organic chemistry, while maintaining a private practice as a Functional Wellness Coach, Herbalist, and Nutrition Consultant.


Kelsey Barrett

Kelsey Barrett is a western clinical herbalist and nourishing foods enthusiast. A former Director and core faculty member at the Ohlone Herbal Center in Berkeley, California, Kelsey currently holds a private practice called Heavy Nettle (@heavynettlegathering), manages the Wellness Den at Spirit Weavers Gathering, and serves as Herbal Program Director for Wildtender.