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March 21, 2022

2022 North Fork Valley Resiliency Workshop

April 18 and 25

The second annual North Fork Valley Resiliency Workshop occurred via Zoom on April 18 and 25. Last year the workshop focused on how to build a resilient, strong and local economy that can withstand economic shocks. This year, we focused on local innovations, water resiliency, and preserving agricultural land and community health. Local businesses, farmers, and community organizations discussed how to adapt and foster resiliency. The strength of our community depends on our ability to create an economy that supports us all.

April 18, 6- 8:15pm

Local Innovation – Water Resiliency

  • Panel: Different Forms of Ag Resiliency – orchards, ranchers, vegetable farms from small to large acreage –TriRiver Extension, Katie Alexander, Jenny Beiermann, and Retta Bruegger
  • Q&A
  • Growing for Increased Drought – What farmers and backyard growers can do to improve their soil to make it more resilient to drought. –Brad Tonnessen, CSU Research Station
  • Q&A
  • Keeping water on the landscape – potential solutions –Shawn LaBounty
  • Q&A

Related links and resources

Katie Alexander’s resources:
Katie’s Impacts of Drought-Tools-For Small Acreage presentation slides
APHIS Website:
Defend the Flock:

Colorado Water Knowledge:

Jenny Beiermann / Retta Bruegger
Jenny Beiermann’s North Fork Valley Resiliency-Economics of Drought presentation slides
RettaBruegger’s 2022 Drought Impacts to rangelands presentation slides

Article on Prairie dogs:
Great article on drought impacts on rangelands:

Brad Tonnessen’s Growing for increased drought—building soil to be more resilient presentation slides

Shawn LaBounty’s Pulse Irrigation-Thinking Differently About Water and Irrigation and Systems presentation slides

Drought information:

April 25th, 6- 8:15pm

Local Innovation: Restaurant Scene – Panel

  • Local and Seasonal: Making a local and seasonable foods restaurant focused on health and wellness work –Justen and Joy Williams, The Simple Café.
  • A Restaurant Journey: Long-time Paonia local jumps on changes in the town, and with a historic perspective opens a new comfort food pop-up restaurant during the pandemic – to great success. –Mat Pinkard, Crunch Waffle.
  • Old School, New World: Local spirits pivot and covid survival. –Lance Hanson, Jack Rabbit Hill Farm.
  • Q&A

How Can We Be of Service

  • Conservation Easements On the Rise – Keeping ag land viable –Colorado West Land Trust, Ilana Moir
  • Q&A
  • Municipal Water/Water infrastructure – how it works-what you need to know –Tom Wills, Publisher, Merchant Herald
  • Q&A
  • FarmacyRx – Educational and Nutritional assistance to families at-risk of diet-related diseases –Penelope Powell, Valley Food Partnership
  • Q&A

Links for restaurants:
The Simple Cafe, 229 1/2 Grand Ave Paonia

Crunch Waffle:

Lance Hanson:

Tastemakers did an episode on Jack Rabbit Hill from the beginnings on the farm to the end product and then distribution to carriers of fine libation.

Land Trust contact info:
Ilana Moir –

Paonia’s water system interactive map:,38.8490,-107.5425,38.8804

Benita Carbone:
Benita’s Farmacy Rx 2022 presentation slides

This workshop is a gift to the community and donations are welcomed to support our work.

Participating Organizations

Citizens for a Healthy Community
The Learning Council
Valley Organic Growers Association
Colorado Farm and Food Alliance
Slow Food Western Slope
Viva la Vida
North Fork Valley Creative Coalition logo
West Elks AVA
Resiliency Planning and Action Workshop

Resiliency Planning and Action Workshop

The Resiliency Planning and Action Workshop will explore how to build a resilient, strong and local economy that can withstand economic shocks. The strength of our community depends on our ability to create an economy that supports us all.

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