The Learning Council

A community organization supporting life long learning and education as a resource for everyone.
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The Learning Council has purchased a building – the Hearth – in Downtown Paonia!

We need your help to create an educational community hub for the whole valley to enjoy!


The Learning Council is an educational hub for the North Fork Valley, connecting learners and educators to meet specific needs and empower personal growth. The outcomes of our programs encourage learners to give back to the community through service. Responding to the needs of our community we offer a variety of classes and learning opportunities for all ages and skill levels, continually broadening our course selection.


Education, art, advocacy, and wellness for all.

Diversity Statement

We believe in lifelong learning and education as a resource for everyone. We are committed to inclusion across race, gender, age, religion, identity, and experience.

Our Sponsors


Kampe Foundation logo
Anschutz logo
Rockefeller Family Fund logo
West Elk Community Fund logo
Mountain Harvest Creative logo
Alpine Bank logo
Colorado Trust logo
High Country Printing logo
Womens Foundation of Colorado logo
Colorado Blueprint to End Hunger Logo
Next 50 Initiative logo

Upcoming Events

CSU Field Day

CSU Field Day

Aug 22 – At CSU’s Field Day, celebrate the harvest and learn about interesting agricultural research through farm tours and workshops.

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Seniors on Farms

Seniors on Farms

Aug 26 – Seniors on Farms will be at Thistle Whistle Farm in Hotchkiss and focusing on nightshades. Also, we will talk about local grain.

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Bouquet Design

Bouquet Design

Aug 30 – Join us to learn how to work with locally grown flowers to design your own flower bouquet and bring it home with you!

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Festival Agrícola

Festival Agrícola

Sep 10 – Come celebrate Heritage Days in honor of our agricultural workers at Festival Agricola on September 10, 4-10pm in Olathe.

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West African Drum, Song and Dance

West African Drum, Song and Dance

Sep 18 – Etienne Tolno from Guinea will be leading a West African Drum, Song and Dance workshop. He has been studying West African music since his early teens and drumming professionally with various companies in Guinea since his early twenties.

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Vegetable Variety Tasting

Vegetable Variety Tasting

Sep 27 – Enjoy a Vegetable Variety Tasting event at the Arbol Farmers Market. Also participate in our newest variety trial of regionally adapted seed.

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We’re back at the Hearth (138 Grand Ave, Paonia).

Also, a special shout out to everyone who participated in the show last on Nov 26, 2021.

Between the KNVF takeover and seeing our collective artwork on the wall – it’s hard not to feel the power of our community! Truly grateful! Here are photos, in case you missed it.

Life Drawing


The Learning Council strives to provide educational opportunities to people of all ages and abilities with a focus on community-building and cultivating classical arts, agriculture and practical arts.

(Activities We Do)

(Organizations We Sponsor)

Featured Activity

Community Lunch

Our cooking class utilizes local organic foods, to turn students on to the vitality, nutrition and flavor of our local bounty, while supporting local farms. The class prepares a community meal ($10 suggested donation or 1 hour of work in the kitchen).

We offer weekly meals attracting more community members each time, as well as, people from neighboring communities. We serve a minimum of 50 people each week lunch. This class teaches practical skills, service, and has a mentoring system where students will share their knowledge with each other while working together on a dish.