Category Archives: Adult Workshops

Backcountry Film Festival

Celebrating the Winter Human-Powered Experience

Thursday, February 9th: 7-9:30
at the Backdoor Theatre
Tickets available


Immerse yourself in a night of films that capture the spirit of winter. Adventure, environment and climate, youth outdoors, ski culture- you’ll find it all in this award winning lineup.

The Backcountry Film Festival is produced each year by Winter Wildlands Alliance as a celebration of the human-powered experience and a gathering place for the backcountry snowsports community. Winter Wildlands Alliance is a nonprofit organization working at the national level to inspire and educate the backcountry community to protect and care for their winter landscapes. Funds raised at each screening stay in the local community to support human-powered recreation and conservation efforts, winter education and avalanche/safety programs and to raise awareness of winter management issues.

The Backcountry Film Festival at The Backdoor Theatre of Nederland, Colorado benefits Wild Bear Mountain Ecology Center. Wild Bear Mountain Ecology Center is the only non-profit nature center in Boulder County. Since 1995, Wild Bear’s mission is to provide year round educational programs to people of all ages fostering a life-long appreciation of the environment and promoting an environmentally aware and ecologically sound community. Wild Bear’s passionate roots in science education and the preservation of Colorado began as a small program serving 24 children in the summer of 1995, growing to serve over thousands of people of all ages every year. Wild Bear’s inspirational vision was founded on the belief that learning occurs every day, all day and throughout our lives.

Wild Bear has been connecting people of all ages with snowshoeing in the high country since 2005. David “BigFoot” Felkley, local snowshoeing guru and guide volunteered for Wild Bear to set up programs for youth at Nederland Elementary School and later (since 2010) volunteered to take groups of all ages out to play on the snowshoes in the local forest.

His mantra was to wait until the day of the event to determine the “best snow” and the best trails. When BigFoot passed away in 2014, he left a legacy fund for Wild Bear to purchase its own supply of youth and adult snowshoes. Now, Wild Bear has become known in the region as a top notch Winter Ecology on Snowshoes youth program as well as a place to rent shoes and find out where the “best trail” is! Most recently, Wild Bear has partnered with Winter Wildlands Alliance out of Idaho to become an official “snow school” and serves schools from throughout the region.

Tickets available

Cultivating Compassion

“Be the change you wish to see in the world” – Ghandi

Are world events getting you down? Are you struggling to find inner peace in the midst of chaos? Are you seeking authentic connection with family, friends, and yourself? You are not alone.

Join Arwen Ek, for a free, public class introducing mindfulness techniques, healthy coping strategies, and how to cultivate authentic compassion for our friends, our enemies and the world.

Where: Wild Bear Mountain Ecology Center
When: Every Sunday from 12:30 to 1:00
What to bring if you are so inclined: prayer shawl, cushion, small donation.
This is a nondenominational class and safe space.

About Arwen: Arwen Ek has been practicing and teaching meditation since 2004. She held monastic vows and lived as a Buddhist nun at Tara Mandala Buddhist Retreat Center in Pagosa Springs for 3 years. She is the founding director of The Holistic Homestead, a local nonprofit dedicated to improving health and wellness on every level of being.

Photo of Arwen

Photo of Arwen

Making Felt Balls for Fun, Decorating & Decoration

December 10th: 11-2

Creating felt balls is fun, a little messy and easy to do. Wool can be shaped and turned into balls that are used for Dryer Balls, Ornaments, Jewelry and for playing catch. We will explore two techniques for felting: Wet Felting and Needle Felting. Participants will make balls of various sizes that can be used decoratively or strung to be worn as a necklace. Felt balls make wonderful cat toys too. Felting needles are very sharp, requiring good dexterity when using them. Wool for felt making, felting needles, and tools for use in the workshop will be provided.

$30 per person. Materials Fee $7.50 for fiber and felting needle.
Additional Wool for felting will be available for purchase at $2.50/oz. after the workshop.

This class is led by nationally-admired natural fibers artist, Phylleri Ball.

“After 2 decades of raising sheep and goats, I now have the time to weave, knit and crochet with all their luscious fiber and yarn. In addition to hand-woven rugs, scarves, shawls, bags and knitted hats, I sell yarn, sheepskins, Angora hides and buttons that were produced at our Pennsylvania farm. The names of the animals that contributed their wool are listed on the tags of our farm-raised goods. Dyeing with acid dyes or natural dyes, I continue producing Hand-dyed yarn. Three Sisters Weaving is a dealer for Schacht weaving and spinning equipment, manufactured in Boulder, Colorado. Visit our booth at Colorado Arts and Fiber Festivals.”

Spinning Yarn on a Drop Spindle

Sunday, January 8: 11am-2pm

Making your own yarn from carded wool fleece can be achieved with a simple, inexpensive tool called a “spindle”. It is often referred to as a Drop Spindle, because when you first learn to spin, when your yarn breaks, the spindle drops. Learn to spin a continuous yarn and gain skills in controlling the twist and thickness of your yarn. Spindles for use during the workshop and wool fiber will be provided. Workshop is suited for Adults and adults attending with children ages 8 years old and up.

Suggested Supplies: Bring your own spindle if you own one.
Bring a small rug, yoga mat or thin cushion, to be placed on the floor to protect a dropped spindle from damage.

$30 per person + $5 materials fee

Additional Wool Roving will be available for purchase at $2.50/oz. after the workshop.
Wooden Spindles can be purchased for $23.00.