Dancing Rabbit’s Vision

Dancing Rabbit's Vision

Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage is a collection of passionate people experimenting our way toward an ambitious mission and vision of ecologically sustainable living. We are balancing economic and social sustainability in the context of our ecological commitments.

As a small intentional community intent on growing to be a village of several hundred, we are an experiment in cooperative culture. We appreciate that we are people of different backgrounds, lifestyles, ages, and worldviews who come together to develop, grow, and demonstrate a collaborative, regenerative, and just society. We value and employ a diversity of personal growth, communication, cooperative decision making, and non-violent conflict resolution practices. We do these things in order to deepen interpersonal relationships, challenge the patterns and impacts of sexism, racism and other forms of unearned privilege, and strengthen the interconnected web of community. The inner sustainability* of our community depends on shared purpose, interpersonal connection, individual growth and building internal resilience through play, work, and celebration.

Economic resilience is integral to building a sustainable society. We are committed to developing and practicing systems that encourage social and economic equity. We value the benefits of engaging with the wider economic culture while also educating ourselves and exploring alternative economic models to support our local economy. Developing a strong local economy is essential to our community’s growth and stability. Our ecological covenants are a source of guidance and support as we seek to balance ecological sustainability and sustainable economics.

* Inner Sustainability Defined: Everything we do, on our own and in groups, that helps us learn more deeply about and take care of ourselves and each other, and to grow to become the people we want be.

To create a society, the size of a small town or village, made up of individuals and communities of various sizes and social structures, which allows and encourages its members to live sustainably.*

To encourage this sustainable society to grow to have the size and recognition necessary to have an influence on the global community by example, education, and research.

*Sustainably: In such a manner that, within the defined area, no resources are consumed faster than their natural replenishment, and the enclosed system can continue indefinitely without degradation of its internal resource base or the standard of living of the people and the rest of the ecosystem within it, and without contributing to the non-sustainability of ecosystems outside.

Here are the ecological covenants people who live at Dancing Rabbit agree to adhere to, as part of our endeavor to pass on a healthy planet to future generations:

  1. Dancing Rabbit members will not use personal motorized vehicles or store them on Dancing Rabbit property.
  2. At Dancing Rabbit, fossil fuels will not be applied to the following uses: powering vehicles, space-heating and -cooling, refrigeration, and heating domestic water.
  3. All gardening, landscaping, horticulture, silviculture and agriculture conducted on Dancing Rabbit property must conform to the standards as set by OCIA for organic procedures and processing. In addition, no petrochemical biocides may be used or stored on DR property for household or other purposes.
  4. All electricity produced at Dancing Rabbit shall be from sustainable sources. Any electricity imported from off-site shall be balanced by Dancing Rabbit exporting enough on-site, sustainably-generated electricity, to offset the imported electricity.
  5. Lumber used for construction at Dancing Rabbit shall be either reused/reclaimed, locally harvested, or certified as sustainably harvested.
  6. Waste disposal systems at Dancing Rabbit shall reclaim organic and recyclable materials.

This legal document is signed by all DR residents and describes what we mean when we say “sustainable.”

In theory, the simple statements below are sufficient to govern life at Dancing Rabbit. Since all residents agree to abide by the Guidelines, no other enforcement of ecologically acceptable behavior is necessary. In reality, we expect confusion and even argument as to what these broad statements really mean, so we’ve also included a Sustainability Guidelines Explanations section and have linked each item below to its explanation.

If you have comments or questions, we’d love to hear them. Your feedback will help us refine the Sustainability Guidelines to be even more complete and clear.

  • Dancing Rabbit is committed to working in the following ways to make itself a sustainable system.


  • Dancing Rabbit will look holistically at the issues of sustainability to create a sustainable culture that takes into account all impacts of its actions and acts to preserve the Earth for the future.


  • Dancing Rabbit will strive to rely only upon renewable resources, and to use them at a rate less than their replacement.


  • Dancing Rabbit will try to understand and minimize its negative impact on global ecological systems.


  • Dancing Rabbit will attempt to preserve and rebuild healthy ecosystems and have a positive impact on biodiversity.


  • Dancing Rabbit will try to create a closed resource loop where byproducts are reintegrated as useful resources, thus attempting to minimize waste products, especially those toxic or radioactive.


  • Dancing Rabbit will try to avoid exploiting people and other cultures.


  • Dancing Rabbit will strive to achieve negative population growth from reproduction.


  • As a member of Dancing Rabbit I have read and understand the above and agree to help Dancing Rabbit work toward these goals. I agree to take these ideals into account when making decisions for Dancing Rabbit and for myself while a member of Dancing Rabbit. 


Sustainability Guideline Explanations can be found below the guidelines.

Dancing Rabbit isn’t just a place, it’s a lifestyle. Living here is also a process.

Usually, the first time folks come to DR they’re a visitor in the visitor program or, less frequently, a guest of someone who lives here. We highly recommend that interested potential members participate in the visitor program; it has been thoughtfully designed to answer myriad questions and to enable visitors to interact with almost all current Dancing Rabbit members.

If, after visiting, they decide they like it enough to try living here, they can apply for Residency. During the application process, prospective residents write a “letter of intent” describing, among other things,

  • their reasons for wishing to join Dancing Rabbit
  • what they have to contribute
  • how they intend to meet their (financial, social, spiritual, physical) needs here

We recognize that moving to Dancing Rabbit is often a major life change, and understand that applicants may not have all the answers to the questions (above). The residency period is designed to provide room for exploration, to find what fits and what doesn’t, if Dancing Rabbit is right for the resident, and vice versa. After writing a letter of intent, the Membership and Residency Committee (MARC) surveys the community. If there is enough enthusiasm, support, and integration energy for the prospective resident the survey is followed by an interview. Rather than an inquisition, this interview is more of a reflection opportunity and reality check for both sides. MARC issues a recommendation for or against residency. Members of Dancing Rabbit have two weeks to comment on MARC’s recommendation before the decision becomes final.

When approved, the new resident then signs a residency agreement, which is a document outlining rules for behavior that could affect other people in the village, the project, or property. Residents may rent land, but may not build or hold warren leases – most tent or rent a room/space/house. Residents live here at Dancing Rabbit as members live: they are expected to participate in work rotations, utilize the vehicle cooperative instead of driving a personal vehicle, and are encouraged to serve on committees. They get a VCC bill along with any other co-op bills they incur through use. The main difference between members and residents is that residents cannot buy or build a home here or block consensus on member decisions.

After six months of residency, residents become eligible for membership and can apply to be a member. Ideally, during the residency period, a person has taken the opportunity to get to know as many Dancing Rabbit members as possible; to work, play, and possibly even disagree and resolve conflict. The more realistic the residency experience the easier the decision-making becomes.

The Membership selection process involves a review during which each applicant evaluates themselves as a match for Dancing Rabbit, and Members evaluate them, too. This is generally followed by an interview, and then the Membership and Residency Committee (MARC) issues a recommendation for or against membership. While this sounds scary, MARC and the Dancing Rabbit community in general work hard to keep the process kind and compassionate; usually there are no surprises. Members of Dancing Rabbit have two weeks to comment on MARC’s recommendation before the decision becomes final. The new members then sign a membership agreement, in which they agree to abide by the covenants and keep the sustainability guidelines in mind.

If living at Dancing Rabbit interests you, click here to check out our visitor program!