Meet the Beaver Ponds Staff
Kristin grew up among the aspens and pines on a cattle and hay ranch in the mountains of Idaho, where she developed her love of the land and the environment. Her family raised dairy cattle, pigs, sheep, cattle, horses, and a goat. She carried water from a spring, collected eggs, churned her own butter, and rode horseback though miles of mountain forests, enjoying a rustic lifestyle in her early years.
She received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Idaho in Agribusiness and spent several years in the ranching, veterinary, and dairy industries before completing a Master’s degree in Environmental Science from the University of Idaho.
Seeking adventure and a warmer climate, she took a job on a remote atoll in the Pacific. She developed a love of the ocean and its inhabitants, so she took a break from the corporate world and became a SCUBA instructor in St. Lucia. She also attended massage therapy school in Santa Fe, New Mexico and ran her own massage therapy business in Santa Fe for several years.
She took a job with Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2001, which provided great experience in sustainability, pollution prevention, and energy conservation. She worked with engineers and architects to incorporate Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) principles into standard construction documents for the lab and worked to help the lab become more sustainable through recycling, energy conservation, pollution prevention, and green purchasing programs.
In 2010, she met the love of her life at a music festival in Alma, Colorado. They were married and now live in the house they built together on Mosquito Creek at 10,600 feet. They are musicians and play at some local events.
She was amazed and impressed from day one with Beaver Ponds’ beauty and mission. She is honored to be part of the Beaver Ponds family and looks forward to assisting in the many fascinating plans and activities the organization is pursuing. She is also an instructor at Colorado Mountain College, teaching environmental science and sustainability studies, as well as a volunteer for Colorado River Watch, helping to ensure the water quality of Colorado’s surface waters.
Staff Administrative Coordinator
Briana recently graduated from Northwestern Oklahoma State University with a Bachelor of Science in Health and Sports Science and is currently interning at Proactive Physical Therapy. She also had a distinguished collegiate soccer career winning countless awards, even on a national level. Briana provides support to Beaver Ponds staff in many areas to include operations, development, and grant management. Briana also works as the Volunteer Coordinator which includes onboarding, training, and coordinating our special group of volunteers – the Super Stewards. In her free time she enjoys working out, spending time with family, and enjoying the beautiful outdoors of Colorado.
Eric has been fascinated by sustainable technology and medicine since he was 8 years old. He began learning about medicine by shadowing chiropractors in Omaha, Nebraska as a fourth grader through high school. His old sketchbooks from fourth grade show a solar sports car design and chiropractic manipulation. Healing pain and helping the environment have been Eric’s primary curiosity and motivation.
As a seventh grader he read “The Healer Within.” This was a book about psychoneuroimmunology, or PNI, which was unbelievably fascinating for him. In undergraduate studies he conducted two years of research on the placebo response and pain. Through his studies, he discovered John Kabat-Zinn, known for his work on mindfulness meditation and the effects on pain. Kabat-Zinn’s book, “Coming To Our Senses,” links the idea of mindfulness with environmental health, as well as our individual health.
Sustainable agriculture became a passion for Eric in graduate school at Bastyr University in Seattle. In his practice as a naturopathic doctor, he has focused on pain management and organic methods of medicinal herb production and has owned and operated a healing art center and medicinal herb production company for 5 years in Alma, Colorado. He has been a registered massage therapist since 2001, and is now a registered naturopathic doctor in the state of Colorado (2014 was the first year Colorado accepted registrations for N.D.s).
He has been an adjunct professor at Colorado Mountain College in Breckenridge for 10 years, teaching Anatomy and Physiology, as well as Capoeira, a martial art dance. He also tutors in the biology and disability student tutoring programs. “Docere” is the Latin term meaning “doctor as teacher,” and Eric firmly believes in transcending the self and helping others in this way.
To Eric, the two naturopathic philosophical principles of Docere (doctor as teacher), and Tolle Causam (treat the cause), are crucial for biodiversity and environmental health, as we know it.
He believes that the goals of inspiring stewardship of the Earth and teaching people about sustainability are the challenges of our time. As a biologist and a doctor, Eric is thrilled and honored to care for the plants and animals in this stunningly gorgeous natural setting in Park County Colorado, while teaching others about sustainable ways of living.
Andrea and her beautiful family moved to Fairplay in 2018, where the Bartel’s are building a new home in the Spring of 2019. She has a BA in Sociology from Auburn University. At Beaver Ponds, you’ll find Andrea and her entire happy family lovingly taking care of the animals in the barn, and lending a hand whenever a need arises.
Andrea’s two boys, John Mixon and Thomas are familiar faces at Beaver Ponds, and always help with the Animal Husbandry. Both are homeschooled. Her husband Andy is an accomplished web developer and coder, and generously volunteers at the Ranch.
Andrea also sings with the Praise Band at South Park Christian Chapel. Andy is the Sound Engineer.
Dave was born outside of Philadelphia. His family moved to Colorado Springs during his High School years, and he’s been in love with this state ever since.
He has twenty five years experience in marketing, graphic design and public relations. Dave has done extensive design work with the City of Colorado Springs, the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs, Colorado Springs Utilities as well as numerous local and national businesses. His company Adwerks created much of the initial graphic design for the Trails and Open Space Coalition (TOPS), helping an initiative pass that for the last 17 years has secured millions of dollars to protect open space along the front range.
Over the last ten years, Dave has discovered a love of organic gardening, raising composting worms (Vermiposting) and other ecological pursuits. Beaver Ponds is a perfect fit. He hopes to spread his knowledge and passion for these noble green goals to people throughout Southern Colorado.
Dave has also been a semi-professional musician for over 25 years, playing a little bass guitar and doing some singing. He has a beautiful daughter, Lydia, who is studying architecture in Kansas City.
Growing up in Southwestern Ohio in the 1980’s with two parents, two brothers and two sisters, a love for the outdoors was instilled in Scott at an early age. His interest was shaped by explorations in the backyard vegetable garden, trips in the VW bus to John Bryan and Glen Helen State Park’s, and visiting The Learning Tree Farm (an environmental and educational working farm). A curiosity and appreciation of the mountains developed while traveling to see grandparents in West Virginia.
In high school, while competitively running cross country, he learned the importance of setting the gearshift to the high gear of one’s soul and a love for the environment grew and deepened while partaking in long distance runs through the woods of Ohio. At this time a college visit to a friend introduced him to homesteading and the idea of sustainability.
Heading into the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains Scott studied Wildlife Management/Ecotourism and Adventure Travel at Hocking College where he pursued courses in the natural sciences including Dendrology, Ornithology, Field Biology and Edible/Medicinal Plants. Other course studies included Sustainable Design, Building with Indigenous Materials and Interpretive Studies. While at Hocking certifications in both Chainsaw Operation and W.F.R. (Wilderness First Responder) were acquired and his first backyard vegetable garden was grown, providing carrots, potatoes, eggplant, peppers, onion & basil. Looking to quench his curious thirst for mountainous environs he found himself amongst the 14,000 foot peaks of the Rocky Mountains where he has enjoyed learning and continuing his education through working on many projects including:
-Volunteering for ‘Primal Quest’ Expedition Adventure Race Series for 3 years, traveling to the Sierra Nevada’s and Lake Tahoe, California, The San Juan Islands of Washington State and the La Sal Mountains and desert regions of Utah.
-Ski Instructing at Breckenridge Ski Resort teaching 3-6 year old’s.
-Restoration of beaver dams at Red Tail Ranch and pasture land improvements at The Coors Ranch while working for an excavation company in Summit County, CO.
-Building with reclaimed barn wood and Colorado Lodgepole Pine (beetlekill) on numerous bar & restaurant builds including ‘The Historic Brown Hotel & Restaurant’.
-Aiding in the construction of an Aircrete Dome Home, Park County, CO
Currently residing on a 10 acre, off-the-grid, solar powered home just a crow’s flight from Beaver Ponds, Scott and his ladyfriend Tawnya hope to expand homesteading operations from greenhouse, outdoor garden beds and water catchment systems to include an apiary (with mentorship from his father, currently in his second year of keeping bees) and laying hens, all while continuing to investigate and implement permaculture and biotecture techniques and designs.
Youth Groups Coordinator
Sharing love of the natural world is something Lori has been doing her entire life. Countless hours, as a child, exploring tame and wild places laid this foundation.
For 25 years, Lori has been weaving the natural world into her classrooms through a bounty of arts and sciences. After receiving teaching diplomas from Champlain College of Vermont and Montessori World Educational Institute of California, Lori founded the Bristlecone Children’s School (BCS) in Alma, Colorado. BCS classrooms expanded well beyond its school house walls: into an outdoor classroom in a Peace Garden – into an organic vegetable garden and summer nature camps exploring local, natural wonders. Lori’s journeys through teaching led her to further explore contemplative approaches, Waldorf Education, and nature immersion.
Providing children with a secure, peaceful environment where they are free to explore the wonders and beauty of life is something Lori believes to be an essential gift to the world. BPEEC offers such a space.
Lori continues to explore tame and wild places at home and afar.
Events & Programs
Winters are wonderful at Beaver Ponds.
Here are some upcoming programs and events.
Forest Camp at Beaver Ponds - February Friday Sessions
February 1, 8, 15, 22 - 9am to 1pm
COST: $150 per child for all 4 Fridays
A nature immersion camp awakening a sense of wonder and reverence for the natural world.
Forest exploration followed by lunch and nature-inspired art.
SnowSchool at Beaver Ponds
February 9, 2019 - 9:30am to NOON
Class Theme: Snow! How Does Snow Form?
COST: $35 per child AGES 8-12
A magical morning of snow science and games while enjoying a snowshoe hike
For more information, contact Briana Legaspi at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (719) 838-0143, visit our website here
or CLICK HERE to download a printable PDF with all the information you'll need!
SnowSchool at Beaver Ponds
February 16, 2019 - 9:30am to NOON
Class Theme: Animal Adaptations in Winter
COST: $35 per child AGES 8-12
A magical morning of snow science and games while enjoying a snowshoe hike!
Open Ski & Snowshoe Days at Beaver Ponds
Saturday, February 23rd, 2019 - 9:30am to 4:30pm
Come enjoy the unique beauty of Beaver Ponds the last Saturday of every month from December 29th, 2018 - March 30th, 2019. We are collecting our 2019 Liability Waivers. CLICK HERE to download the waiver. For more information, contact Briana Legaspi at email@example.com or call (719) 838-0143. Or CLICK HERE to download a printable PDF with all the information you'll need!
quietening the mind deep in the forest water drips ~Hasho Many of our experiences with nature evoke a calm, relaxing state. Research has found that spending 30 minutes a week in nature reduces high blood pressure and depression (Christina Procopiou Medical Daily...read more
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The Oxford English Dictionary defines Kinesthesia as “the brain’s awareness of the position and movement of the body or limbs etc., by means of sensory nerves within the muscles and joints.” When you think about the amazing capacity of our bodies and minds to...read more
The North American Association for Environmental Education’s (NAAEE) Guidelines for Excellence within Environmental Education (EE) addresses the importance of EE: ‘Environmental education recognizes the importance of viewing the environment within the context of...read more
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