Southern Rockies Heritage School in full swing at TSJC.
Southern Colorado features a rich heritage, tempered with pioneer spirit and ingenuity. With the goal of promoting life-long learning, Trinidad State Junior College has formed the Southern Rockies Heritage School where traditional skills, crafts, and other art forms will be taught.
Many of the classes are held at Trinidad State’s Trinidad Campus, while others are planned for outlying locations where facilities permit. Classes in progress include scrimshaw, cowboy hat making, leather holster making, powder horns, spur making, belt buckles, blacksmithing, Northern Pueblo basket making, paper making and many more.
School director Kim McKee has wanted to open a heritage-based school for more than a decade. She and her husband Ken Willson are professional musicians who have studied traditional cultures to gain an understanding of our ancestors. Kim performs on the harp, accordion, hammer and mountain dulcimer, guitar and Irish bodhran, is a song writer and loves to sing ballads related to her Irish/Scottish heritage. She wants the new school to share knowledge and skills and pass them from one generation to the next, so they won’t be lost.
“If you’ve ever wondered how cheese is made, marveled at the skill of a blacksmith or felt the creative urge to work with leather, spin wool or make soap, the school will have something for you. Farm classes will include medicinal herbs, backyard chickens, beekeeping and more.”