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It is apparently time to get off our duffs, out in the fresh air, and walk our way to better health in Chaffee County. At least that is the message of a new program designed to get county residents in better health being launched in Chaffee County.

Chaffee County Public Health (CCPH) announced this week that it partnered with America Walks, Intrinsic Paths and Age Strong Chaffee for a Walking Leadership Training on January 17 at the Chaffee County Fairgrounds.

The event was led by walking artist, Walk2Connect founder, and author Jonathon Stalls, who wrote the insightful book “Walk, Slow Down, Wake Up and Connect at 1-3 Miles per Hour”.

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Nineteen Chaffee County residents attended from Salida, Buena Vista, Nathrop, and Poncha Springs. The purpose of the training was to empower Walking Leaders; teaching them how to facilitate meaningful, safe, and inclusive walks for Chaffee County residents.

Called “Chaffee Walks!” the concept is to develop a circle of partners, neighbors, new friends, volunteer leaders/co-leaders, and more, rather than one organizational project or program.  This new initiative was introduced by Salida resident and Age Strong Coalition member Marilyn Bouldin.  Marilyn attended the Colorado Walking College and upon graduation was gifted grant dollars that were to be used to initiate grassroots walking initiatives.

“As I have learned personally, walking is so beneficial to one’s physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health,” explains Bouldin. “This new initiative is a way to support all people in incorporating this activity into their daily lives.”

As CCPH has pointed out, during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us lost social connections; including those found through walking and enjoying beautiful Chaffee County.  CCPH is now actively encouraging residents to attend future Chaffee Walks!” walking events to reconnect with nature, your body, and one another.

CCPH and Age Strong Chaffee provide opportunities throughout the month to exercise and stay socially and mentally active. For further details about this as well as other opportunities to Age Strong in Chaffee County, please visit, or e-mail Molly Bischoff at

Chaffee Walks! has a Facebook group where organized walks can be found as well as on the website.