Official elephant event: Tour de Coops! {Boulder, Yummy Yards, Laura Ruby}

Via Waylon Lewis
on Sep 3, 2010
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Chicken coops! Bicycles! Free! Bees! Goats! Oh my!

The best thing to happen to Boulder in a long, long time (or at least for a month, we get a lot of fun here).

elephant is an unofficial media sponsor of this event—unofficial because “we” officially messed up in failing to publicize this event until now.

But we’ll be on our bikes with friends, checking out Boulder’s simultaneously innovative/old school homes!

For more, read our friend Laura Ruby’s story below, or click here.


It’s time to get ready for Boulder’s first annual Tour de Coop.

With thanks to Betsy Burton for her inspiration, Boulder will have its first annual tour of backyard chicken coops, edible gardens, bee hives, miniature dairy goats and one property with an aquaponics system (think fish and hydroponics working together).  The first Lyons Tour de Coops happened last September, featuring 14 backyard coops around the town of Lyons.

Backyard gardens and ‘edible estates’ are popping up in neighborhoods around the country, and why not?  With an increasingly unstable economy, an undependable and unsustainable agricultural system (think Wright County Egg and the recent half billion egg recall), and the discovery of the pure joy that comes in growing your own food, more and more folks are taking on the challenge of producing more of their own food.  Most people think of producing their own food as growing fruits and vegetables in their backyards, patios and community gardens.  But, if you are a vegetarian, or just really enjoy eggs, the next step in backyard self-sufficiency is raising chickens.

I brought home my first chicks this March and began my journey as a chicken keeper.  I soon found a small community of other folks around town that also had chickens.  But, I also found an even larger number of folks that were interested in raising chickens but weren’t sure where to start.  The Tour de Coops in Boulder and Lyons are a great opportunity for people to learn more about raising chickens by visiting a number of coops and talking with people who are keeping them in Boulder county and within city limits.

So whether you’re interested in expanding your homestead or just need a good excuse to learn more about what’s happening in your community, grab your family and friends and hit the streets September 4th from 2-5pm.  The Tour will conclude an Eat Local Challenge organized by Transition Boulder County.  For more information about the Eat Local Challenge, visit,

And if you’re not in Boulder County, there is a chance that a chicken coop tour is happening somewhere nearby.  While they are yet in every town (this is Boulder’s first), more and more people are eager to learn about bringing these previously considered ‘rural animals’ to their neighborhood communities.

For more information about the Boulder Tour de Coops, please contact


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


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