The Cloud City Farm, Greenhouse and Living Classroom is at 440 McWethy Dr. in Leadville
The Mission of the Cloud City Farm is to address healthy food access challenges in Lake County and inspire stewardship of our natural resources through local food production, educational opportunities, and community engagement.
We have a composting facility at the Farm. Community members have two options for participating:
2019 CSA Farm Shares
We are introducing a new system this year similar to other programs in the area, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA).
Community Supported Agriculture refers to a network of individuals, who have pledged to support local farms, with growers and consumers sharing the risks and benefits of food production. CSA allows residents to have direct access to high quality, fresh produce grown by local farmers. When you become a member of a CSA, you’re purchasing a “share” of vegetables. Every other week, in the growing season, you can pick up your share at the farm.
There will be a lottery for the limited number of shares. Apply here by April 24th to enter. If you were a 2018 member (snow pea, carrot, kale or marigold) enter by April 3rd to receive priority!
If you are having trouble with any of the links or access to documents, email us at email@example.com.
We accept SNAP cards and can offer Double Up Food Bucks to SNAP recipients (double the value of your SNAP card).
Structure: Group A shares will begin May 22nd and will be available every other week until September 26th. Group B shares will begin May 29th and will be available every other week until October 3rd. Cloud City Farm shares will include 5-7 types of vegetables, enough for a family of 3-4 people for one week or 1-2 people for two weeks. Shares are $240 for the season. Here is a list of possible produce.
Produce beyond the CSA program will only be available on a limited basis at the farmer’s market if there is excess. Sign up for the CSA!
The Cloud City Farm will provide outstanding educational opportunities for our youth to become farmers, scientists and stewards of the Earth.
Who is supporting it? Over 100 Lake County residents have given money or volunteered on the project. In addition, the Leadville Trail 100 Legacy Foundation, Copper Environmental Foundation, the Freeport McMoRan Community Investment Fund, the Summit Foundation, Gates Family Foundation, and New Belgium Brewing have also given grants to support the project.
The LiveWell Leadville Community Food Access Assessment (2014) found that healthy foods are not adequately available and affordable to local residents. Lake County is an unhealthy food “swamp” with not enough healthy food outlets. Leadville and Lake County have only one grocer, and the estimated total weekly cost of groceries is 18% more expensive than the national average and 12-14% higher than surrounding counties, even those counties with markedly higher per-capita incomes.
Compounding these findings, in 2015, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) produced its County Health Rankings and placed Lake County 50 of the 60 ranked counties in Colorado. One area of concern for the health and wellness of Lake County families was limited access to healthy foods and adequate physical activity, particularly for youth.
There are several negative byproducts of the lack of availability and affordability of fresh and organic vegetables. The first is that fewer fresh nutritious vegetables are eaten, more unhealthy foods are eaten that also include chemicals, pesticides and preservatives, and ultimately health suffers. The second is that food must travel farther, using more fossil fuels and be less nutritious and tasty when it arrives at our plate. The third is that our residents and youth are further disconnected from the the act of growing food, and stewarding the earth as a part of this process. We miss a first rate opportunity to take part in nature’s intricate web of ecology and grow our community’s self-sufficiency at the same time.
Our youth need to be prepared to grapple with complex environmental and social issues. A strong foundation in science combined with prolonged first-hand experience with environmental processes and impacts, will be invaluable to this preparation. Real changes in stewardship come about from strategies that are designed not just to increase knowledge, but to “give the learner a sense of involvement and ownership … (such as) hands-on learning activities, investigational approaches, out-of classroom experiences, and student directed learning” (National Environmental Education and Training Foundation, 2009).
Lake County School District administrators, teachers and staff have been excellent partners in the past several years in developing enrichment programs for youth that have a community sustainability focus. The compost program has proven how well teachers and students respond to on-site STEM learning opportunities. As a result of the compost initiative, Lake County School District teachers were the first to requested a greenhouse as a phase two of the project, so that students can be a part of the full cycle of nutrients, plant life, eating and decomposition.