Q&A’s

Are Co-Sponsorships and donations to OACC tax deductible?

Please contact us for specific instructions if you would like to deduct your Co-Sponsorship or your donation.

Why are meals at OACC vegetarian?

It is not the formal consensus of the Congress that any form of diet is preferred over other diets. Ananda Kanan, the site of the Congress in recent years, prohibits particular foods in their kitchen including flesh, mushrooms, garlic and onions.

I’ve lived in the Ozarks for years. How come I’ve never heard of OACC?

While any number of newspaper and magazine articles about OACC have been published over the years, the organization has remained low-profile overall. Word of mouth emerged as the most effective method of publicity for OACC. It has often been said that if each attendee would bring two people with them to the next Congress, that in time the entire Bioregion would be represented while maintaining a level of growth that might keep the values and principles of the Congress intact.

What Would it Take for OACC to Happen at a Different Location Next Year?

Ananda Kanan has graciously hosted many OACC’s in recent years. People often ask what it would take to change the location of OACC in the following year.

The Congress has convened in many beautiful settings and we welcome your ideas for new venues. Anyone who is willing to attend the planning session of the next OACC and come prepared with the necessary information is invited to propose a new location. The Sunday morning planning meeting of each Congress is the time and place major decisions about OACC are made. Decisions are made by consensus of those who attend the meeting.

Necessary information to be presented at the meeting permits the Congress to decide if the proposed facility will be affordable and meet the needs of all. Please take a look at the list of questions to ask when you are researching possible locations. Not every question need be answered with a “yes”, however, all of the information listed is necessary for the Congress to make an informed decision as to whether a location will meet our needs. We thank you for your help and look forward to taking OACC to new locations!

What is a bioregion?

In 1983, David Haenke defined bioregions as: …geographical areas which are defined by natural boundaries, such as rivers, or particular land forms which set them off as distinct from adjacent regions. Each bioregion is further defined by the kinds of flora and fauna that grow within it, which may be unique to it, or just exist in greater numbers or density than in adjoining areas. Unique human cultures which are shaped by the rigors, abundances, and general nature of the bioregion also contribute to its definition. Bioregional boundaries, being created by nature, often cross the arbitrary political lines drawn by humans in their creation of nations, states, and other subunits.

Reference: In Context: The North American Bioregional Congress

Who decides where one bioregion ends and another begins?

Bioregional boundaries can be thought of as emerging from the geologic and living systems that constitute the region. Unlike political boundaries, which are imposed, bioregional boundaries are discovered by observation of natural features and the manner in which the people living within them interact with their surroundings. Peter Berg of Planet Drum wrote of bioregional boundaries that:

Geographic areas having common characteristics of soil, watershed, climate, native plants and animals that exist within the whole planetary biosphere as unique and contributive parts…The final boundaries of a bioregion, however, are best described by the people who have lived within it, through human recognition of the realities of living in place…there is a distinctive resonance among living things and the factors that influence them which occurs specifically within each separate part of the planet.

Reference: An Introduction to Bioregionalism

What are the natural boundaries of the Ozark Bioregion?

The Ozarks is an ideal example of a bioregion because its boundaries are fairly easy to identify on relief maps of North America. Bioregional boundaries can be sharply demarcated or more diffuse. For example, the southeast boundary of the Ozark Bioregion lies distinctly where the mountains end abrubtly as they abut the alluvial plain of the Mississippi River. The western boundary of the Ozarks is more diffuse, where the prairies intermingle with, and gradually give way to the forested hills of the Ozark Bioregion. The northern boundary roughly follows the Missouri River, but may be more accurately thought of as the most southern reaches of the glaciers in the last ice age that flattened the terrain north of the Ozarks. The eastern boundary follows the Mississippi River from near the confluence of the Missouri River south to the Mississippi alluvial plain. An exception is that the hilly terrain across the Mississippi (in the far southern tip of what is politically defined as Illinois) that is sometimes thought of as part of the Ozark Bioregion. However some think the area across the Mississippi culturally distinct enough to be a separate region. The southern boundary of the Ozark Bioregion might be the Arkansas River, or it might be the southern extent of the Ouachita Mountains. It depends who you ask.