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LEAVENWORTH, WA, October 11, 2006 --/WORLD-WIRE/--
As we move into this election season, the adherents of a simpler life are asking us to understand the importance of our public life. Whether the problem is voter turnout, civic action, or the misuse of public lands, democracy is diminished as people spend more and more time working, shopping, and watching television.

These will be among the topics explored at a national conference being held at the legendary Sleeping Lady Mountain Retreat in Leavenworth, WA on Nov. 3-5, 2006 called

Simple Living and the Rekindling of Public Life: Sustainable Business, Local Community and the Common Good.

According to Global Consumer Trends 2006 report, the quest for simplicity and authenticity is a mega-trend with significant impact.

The conference will explore:
  • how we can work for the well-being of people and the planet;
  • limiting our use of oil;
  • combating global warming by reducing our consumerism;
  • slowing down our lifestyle and limiting our work hours;
  • supporting local and sustainable businesses; and
  • rekindling local community activism.
The conference launches Simple Living America as the first nationwide nonprofit membership organization for the general public centered on simplicity. It also initiates the third season of the popular Simple Living with Wanda Urbanska national public television series. In its second season, the series appeared on 64 PBS stations reaching 67% of US TV households. The series includes an exclusive special program about former President & Mrs. Jimmy Carter's commitment to simplicity before, during and after the White House.

The conference is also timed for the release of Cecile Andrews' new book, Slow is Beautiful: New Visions of Community, Leisure, and Joie de Vivre this fall from New Society Publishers.

Conference keynoters include actor Ed Begley, Jr. and television host Wanda Urbanska.

This conference also presents Earth Day Co-Founder Denis Hayes.

Other speakers include:
  • John de Graaf, Affluenza and Take Back Your Time Handbook
  • Cecile Andrews, The Circle of Simplicity and Slow is Beautiful
  • Frank Levering, director/co-producer Simple Living with Wanda Urbanska
  • Al Runte, Public Lands, Public Heritage: The National Forest Idea
  • Carol Holst, Simple Living America
  • Harriet Bullitt, Sleeping Lady Mountain Retreat
  • Wenda O'Reilly, Birdcage Press
  • Dave Wampler, The Simple Living Network
  • Paul Andrews, Green for Good
  • Myra Strober, Stanford University economist
  • Stan King, The Simplicity Forum
  • Brett Olson and Jan Joannides, Renewing the Countryside
  • John Wear, Jr., Catawba College Center for the Environment
  • Sam Ruark, Sustainable Communities Consulting
  • Gina Ciganik, Central Community Housing Trust
Interviews with any of the conference speakers can be arranged.

Carol Holst, Co-Director
Simple Living America

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