The Western Slope Conservation Center arranges many events throughout the year to keep local community members engaged in the North Fork Valley. In addition to our major events, we arrange several outings and hikes in collaboration with agencies like the Forest Service and BLM. These hikes serve as trail work hikes, on-site talks about upcoming management plans, and general educational hikes where professionals talk about topics like geology, ecology, and botany. Check out our Facebook Page or our Event Calendar below for upcoming events! 


Join us on the last Thursday of each month for a happy hour centered on public lands! Each month we will connect with friends, old and new, discuss a relevant public lands issue, and play trivia for a local prize. All are welcome to this free event, so please invite your friends, neighbors, and family! See our events calendar below for details about each month’s event.

Upcoming Events


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In June, the WSCC hosts its annual Float Trip and River Festival. The location of the float and celebration has varied over this 20 year old tradition, but with the development of the Paonia River Park, it’s become the primary location of the River Festival. The 2020 festival is June 6, from 3-9pm with family-fun games and river-based education for all ages. You can float down the North Fork of the Gunnison River from Paonia to the Hotchkiss Fairgrounds the next day. The River Festival is a time to celebrate the value of the river and access to recreation in public lands. It also serves to celebrate the wonderful people of the Western Slope with food, games, music, and fun. Limited space will be available for the float. Check back soon for registration!

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Film Festivals

Each year, WSCC collaborates with Paradise Theatre to host two film festivals – Mountainfilm On Tour (Fall) and Colorado Environmental Film Festival Caravan Tour (Spring). At the festivals, film-goers are transformed into a congregation of committed activists, dedicated to saving our increasingly threatened planet. We show environmental and adventure films that illustrate the Earth’s beauty, the challenges facing our planet and the work communities are doing to protect the environment. These film series inform people about the state of the world and inspires them to take action.


Annual Meeting

Hosted in February, the annual meeting allows WSCC membership to gather for a celebration of the previous year’s accomplishments. At the meeting, we discuss major highlights of the previous year, plans for the year ahead, and thank our supporters for their invaluable contributions.


Conservation Days

Western Slope Conservation Center hosts  field trips that take students from five Delta County public schools out of their classrooms and into nature for a multidisciplinary hands-on environmental education experience. Hundreds of fourth graders (10 year olds) from Cedaredge Elementary, Crawford P-6, Delta’s Lincoln Elementary, Hotchkiss K-8, and Paonia Elementary gather at the Paonia River Park to explore the river while learning about conservation.

Throughout the years the Conservation Center has consistently heard from teachers that they need three things to educate their students about the environment and conservation: opportunities to bring kids outside; teaching materials to help kids observe their natural environment; and experts to teach kids about local conservation issues. We organized field trips at the River Park to meet all of these needs at once.

Seven structured learning stations set up around the park engaged students in fun, creative, activities such as games, demonstrations, and artwork. Stations were run by local environmental educators, artists, and regional conservation experts.