Capture the rain; workshop set Monday

Staff Report

Roaring Fork Valley residents interested in collecting rainwater for later use in their yard or garden are in luck.

With the passage of a state law permitting rainwater collection and the advent of the valley’s first rain barrel workshop, locals can prepare themselves to use the rain that falls on their roof. House Bill 1005, which passed last year, lifted Colorado’s longtime ban on residential rain barrel use.

Three organizations — the Community Office for Resource Efficiency (CORE), Roaring Fork Conservancy and attorney Jeff Conklin from Karp Neu Hanlon — have teamed up to hold the community class, which will cover all the basics of local water collection and irrigation.

The workshop will be held from 4-6 p.m. Monday, June 5, at the Third Street Center in Carbondale. Registration cost for the community class is $35, which includes the workshop, plus one rain barrel per household (an $80 value). Space is limited to 20 participants. Registration is open now at and is expected to sell out.

Participants will learn about harvesting local water, rain barrel installation and maintenance, and rain barrel regulations in accordance with Colorado Water Law.

A few things to know before signing up: rain barrels can be installed only at single-family households and multi-family households with four or fewer units. The residential property should also have an accessible rain gutter under which to place the rain barrel.

The rain barrel event supports The High Five, a new social movement to take action on the environment by saving energy. “Use local water: install a rain barrel” is one of the program’s 25 actions that residents can take to reduce their impact on the environment. Harvesting rainwater is a win-win: it saves energy (treating and transporting water) and money (paying for municipal water). More actions and prizes at

This workshop is copresented by CORE, the Roaring Fork Conservancy and the High Five, and sponsored by the Colorado Water Conservation Board. More at: CORE: 970-925-9775 extension 503 or Roaring Fork Conservancy: 970-927-1290.

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