Education programs now available through Extension office

One great way to start the New Year is to take a class.

The Colorado State University Extension office is now offering a number of educational opportunities for the public on topics including radon awareness, beef production, gardening at high altitude and CPR/first aid certification training.

This is a great opportunity to learn something new or increase your knowledge of a favorite topic. The following classes are now being offered. Please call the Extension office today at 264-5931 to preregister.

Free radon classes and test kits

January is Radon Awareness Month and Extension is offering two free classes to learn the importance of awareness and possible mitigation. As part of the class, each attendee will receive a free radon test kit for their home while supplies last.

Classes are scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 24, from 10:30-11:30 a.m. and again on Feb. 15 at 10:30 a.m. Both classes will be located at the Extension building at the Archuleta County Fairgrounds. To preregister, call 264-5931.

Beef symposium

The 34th annual San Juan Basin Beef Symposium will take place in Pagosa Springs on Feb. 8 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Archuleta County Fairgrounds at 344 U.S. 84.

Learn the trends of the cattle market and what is driving it from the director of the Livestock Marketing and Information Center. A panel of direct market producers will also talk about how they have developed niche markets and sell directly to their market to increase profits. The afternoon will be spent learning about beef quality assurance and a certification test for New Mexico and Colorado will be available.

The cost for a full day of education and a delicious hot beef lunch is only $25 if registration is received by Feb. 3. To register or for questions, contact the Extension office at 264-5931or mail your check made out to Archuleta County Extension to P.O. Box 370, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.

Gardening and landscaping series

Winter is a great time to think, plan and learn about how to grow successfully at high altitude. Whether you are a novice gardener, new to Pagosa Country or want to plant a landscape this spring, these classes are for you.

All classes are located at the Extension building at the Archuleta County Fairgrounds, run 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and cost $35 per class or $150 for the entire series. Preregistration is required by calling 264-5931. Class topics and dates are as follows:

Feb. 9: “All You Need to Know About Gardening in the Mountains” — Including water, climate, growing season, wildlife and microclimates. Class is delivered live and electronically with question-and-answer availability.

Feb. 16: “Soils, Fertilizers and Amendments” — Taught by Darrin Parmenter, Extension agent in La Plata County.

March 2: “Tree and Shrub Selection, Planting and Maintenance” — Taught by Roberta Tolan, Extension agent in Archuleta County.

Thursday, March 9: “The State of Our Forests” — Including insect pressures and trends, and fire mitigation. Taught by Kent Grant, Colorado State Forest Service and Matt Tuten, Pagosa Ranger District.

March 14: “Vegetable Gardening in the Mountains” — Taught by Darrin Parmenter.

CPR and first aid classes

CPR and first aid certification classes are now being offered monthly by the CSU Extension office on the second Monday and Wednesday of each month from 6 to 10 p.m. Anyone needing to receive or renew certification can register by calling the Extension office at 264-5931.

We will also attempt to schedule classes on additional dates with five or more registrations. Cost for the classes is $80 for combined CPR/first aid and $55 for CPR, first aid or recertification. The type of first aid information provided will vary by the needs of the audience.