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Applications for the 2020 Apprentice Program will be accepted November 1st thru December 15th

and processed in the order they are received

The Program

Have you ever wanted to learn how to run and maintain a small organic farm of animals and vegetables? Learn the ropes of goat milking, chicken care, turkey hatching and raising, vegetable production, soil development and composting, and other sustainable farming techniques.

Work Gloves

Time/Cost

Apprentices meet for class once per month from 8:00 am to 11:00 am on Wednesday or Saturday. Classes are held on the 2nd Wednesday and 3rd Saturday of each month from January through December. You will choose to attend either the Wednesday or Saturday classes when applying.

Cost - Cost is $500, billed quarterly on January 1st, April 1st, July 1st, and October 1st, and payment is due before attending the next class.

Work Study - Limited Work Study positions are available. In addition to monthly classes, Work Study participants will be required to be at the Farm an additional 1 or 2 days per month in lieu of being billed for the program. A $125 deposit is due January 1st and will be returned at the end of the year provided the 12 days of required service have been completed. There will be an option to apply for the Work Study program when applying for the Apprentice Program.

NOTE: There is a $20 non-refundable processing fee for the application.

Grain

Questions And Answers

We know you have a lot of questions before you dive in to signing up for our Apprentice Program, and we have a lot of answers. Please read through them and understand the commitment required of you before applying.

Have you ever wanted to learn how to run and maintain a small organic farm of animals and vegetables? Learn the ropes of goat milking, chicken care, turkey hatching and raising, vegetable production, soil development and composting, and other sustainable farming techniques.

Farming is a wonderful, fulfilling, dirty, stinky, cold, hot, muscle building, mindful, frustrating, happy, sad, and innovative experience. Processes are always being changed and improved depending on the situation. Animals are not widgets and they have personalities and feelings even if they are part of your food system. You will experience the “zen” of farming as one of the most rewarding and challenging experiences you will ever have. That said, you will also learn to keep yourself safe and healthy as we deal with sometimes unpredictable animals larger and smaller than us. This is NOT about muscle, it’s about ingenuity, leverage, observation, and sometimes remembering that you are the one with thumbs (and the ability to step back and consider a situation before reacting.)

An Apprenticeship is a job. It is an opportunity for you gain farming skills through a combination of learning sessions and hands-on service.

Adults 18 years and older. Anyone under 18 must be accompanied by a supervising adult.
You must be willing to do the following tasks:

  • Shovel chicken, turkey, or goat manure (mucking barns)
  • Carry 5 gallon buckets (20-30 lbs)
  • Move bales of hay (with another person if needed)
  • Work with animals that are larger than you

NOTE: Couples are welcome to apply, but must fill out separate applications.

Once a month from 8:00 am to 11:00 am on Wednesday or Saturday. Classes are held on the 2nd Wednesday and 3rd Saturday of each month from January through December. You will choose to attend either the Wednesday or Saturday classes when applying.

Classes are held on-site at 5 Fridges Farm - 11100 W 38th Ave, Wheat Ridge, CO 80033.

The cost is $500 billed in 4 increments over the year.

Our Work Study program allows you to work off the cost of the classes. The work days are in addition to the apprentice classes and involve much more hands-on time at the Farm. A Work Study participant should plan on being at the Farm 1 or 2 days per month to help out with things such as chores, public tours, goat walks, and Farm maintenance. A total of 14 work days are required to fulfill the Work Study agreement. A deposit of $125 is due before beginning the program, and will be refunded when the work commitment has been met.

NOTE: There is a non-refundable processing fee for the application.

The fee covers the administrative time required to process the application.

You must be willing and able to do the following tasks:

  • Shovel chicken, turkey, or goat manure (mucking barns)
  • Carry 5 gallon buckets (20-30 lbs)
  • Move bales of hay (with another person if needed)
  • Work with animals that are larger than you

Expect that we will be working outside with animals at each visit to the Farm -- rain, sun, snow, super warm, or freezing cold -- and dress appropriately:

  • Hat, water bottle, sunscreen
  • Gloves, muck boots (rubber)
  • Clothes that can get dirty and are appropriate for the weather

No flip-flops or shorts.

You must attend 12 classes between January and December. Classes are held on the 2nd Wednesday and 3rd Saturday of each month from January through December. You will choose to attend either the Wednesday or Saturday classes when applying.

We accept 16 Work Study applicants. Applications are considered in the order they are received from the timestamp on the application.

No, but we can give you a certificate if it will make you happy.

Application

Applications will be accepted beginning on November 1st and will be processed in the order they are received.

Please read through all Questions And Answers carefully and understand the commitment required of you before applying:

  • Have your own work gloves, boots, and weather-appropriate attire for working outdoors.
  • Physically (and emotionally) be able to shovel manure, milk goats, move hay, and work with animals bigger than you.
  • Pay quarterly invoices on time.

Apprentice
Apply for the 2020 Apprentice Program

Watering Can

Schedule

January

  • Orientation
  • Introduction to the Farm, philosophy, Farm leadership, goals, etc.

February

  • Daily life at the Farm: chores, fencing, fixing everything
  • Regular animal care for chickens, turkeys, and dairy goats

March

  • Preparing and planning for growing, hatching, and birthing
  • Seeds, seedlings, cold-farming, and other growing that can be done inside and out while it is still cold outside

April

  • Turkey hatching, baby bird maintenance, milking goats
  • Preparation for summer Farmers Markets

May

  • Bees, goat pregnancy care and birthing
  • Preparing for the overload of cuteness of newborn goats

June

  • Baby Goats!
  • Vegetable and herb growing

July

  • Milking goats and weaning baby goats
  • More vegetable and herb growing

August

  • Water issues
  • Cheesemaking

September

  • Harvesting
  • Preserving

October

  • Breaking down the garden areas
  • Preparing animals for winter

November

  • Turkey Harvest
  • Compost

December

  • Graduation potluck
  • Planning for next year
Milking 101
Wendell Barry glamour shot
Wranglin' Darryl. Or is it my Other Brother Darryl?
No matter the weather...
Getting ready for the goat parade
Making cheese
Making cheese
Amanda helps people pick their own pumpkin at a fall farmers market.
Farmer by day...

The apprenticeship at 5 Fridges has been an enthralling experience from the first minute I stepped on the farm. Amanda's enthusiasm for the work and knowledge of the food system makes for easy learning. If you are looking to have an accessible farm experience  and develop skills in animal husbandry, there is no better option locally.  - Mike S. 2019

As a stay at home mom trying to refind my strengths, this program has been a blessing to my sanity! The other benefit is working to help build a knowledge for a more sustainable community.  -- April P. 2019

I am so grateful to have 5 Fridges in my community, and even more grateful for the apprenticeship program. It has been a long-time goal of mine to learn more about small-scale farming and food systems, and being able to learn in a hands-on way - in such a safe and thoughtful environment, minutes from my home - is more than I'd ever hoped for! After just a few short months, I feel more capable and confident when it comes to the prospect of undertaking things on my own... but my favorite part is that I'm able to learn alongside my neighbors and contribute to an invaluable piece of life in my city.  -- D'nelle D. 2019

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11100 W 38th Ave.
Wheat Ridge, CO  80033
(303) 725-8748

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