I attended a workshop here and absolutely loved it! The forest paths are beautiful. I enjoyed the rustic lodge and dorms. Food was great! I would definitely come back, and recommend renting their event space for your program, workshop, or event.
Review from Guidestar
This place is disgusting. They preach sustainability, community, and non-violence here, however their actions are just the opposite. I had a horrible experience here and deeply regret ever stepping foot into this place. My 5-months here was a struggle the whole time, and I lost a lot of money and time in getting tangled up with these people.
This “non-profit” is structured somewhere in between a pyramid scheme and a survival game. They make their money by preying on unsuspecting newcomers through their “educational” program and through renting dwellings. In the educational program, the students (parents) pay tuition for a course in “sustainability”, however the course is little more than a scheme to have the students do free ranch-hand type labor. Also included in the program is curriculum on alternative governance (sociocracy), which in turn is used to manipulate and control the students and residents. The sociocratic-based structure is based off meetings in which the site privileges and fates of the students and residents is decided literally behind their backs. Residents are strongly discouraged from holding employment outside of the center and are then coerced into working for $5/hr through a (tax dodging) rent credit system. Most students/ residents are surviving off of either/ both their parents money, or social welfare programs. However, the managers/governers at the top of the scheme are driving brand new cars and/or traveling in Europe or the Americas for months on end.
Drugs and crime are prevalent here, with new students and residents being pressured into using. Mostly its just a lot of pot (a lot of pot), but some residents use meth and/or psychedelics. My state farm agent told me of several high-profile theft claims here, and there were several petty thefts of personal belongings and drugs while I was there. There are a handful of people that do not use drugs here. However, overall most everyone gave me a feeling that I did not belong if I didn’t use.
It is easy to see why people get sucked into this place – there are many promises of community and sustainability. The land is peaceful and beautiful, and there are cute murals showing peace and love. However, this is the coldest, most heartless community I have ever seen. They are used to people just coming and going – the average stay is 3 months or so. Therefore, they just don’t care about anyone. They will act all friendly and nice before you move here, but then when you get here they will stab you in the back. They will hold meetings on how they can mess with you and get you to feel so uncomfortable that you will run! One guy got kicked out just for being Hispanic!
They will not use non-violent communication toward you, but they expect you to use it toward them. They are not willing to work out differences; here its simply “my way or the highway”. If you do not subordinate to what they tell you to do and to what they decide for you in their secret meetings, then they will threaten you and push you around. One board member even pushed me into a hot stove when I tried to state my part. These are violent, controlling people and if you try to have an opinion different than theirs they will use force.
They preach sustainability, but are doing no more for the planet than some fancy composting. They have stockpiled about 7000 gallons of human feces, and continue to collect it with no plan to dispose of it. This is not because they want to compost it, but because their septic system is on its last leg. Actually the whole place is run down, with piles of hoarded garbage lurking behind the buildings. They move students/residents in in the summer, but only to discover their roofs leak in the winter. When these students/residents complain about the leaks, they are threatened with eviction.
There is much more to write and I could go on and on about just how messed up these people are, but I’m out of room. I am warning you about this place, there are very few people out there that are subservient enough to survive this kind of authoritarianism. I was not one of them, and I wished that someone had warned me. I wish I never had moved there. If you are considering this place, then you might want to do more research and consider other options.
Lost Valley is an intentional community, featuring a unique opportunity for all young entrepreneurs.
Start your own profitable micro-business while living tax free! For more details, you can call Lost Valley Education Center and ask to speak with their independently contracted Visitor coordinator. She's greedily eager to serve you and contain any requests you have for more information regarding Lost Valley's current woes of legal land use.
Since getting to Lost Valley at the end of last year, i have been continuously astounded by the ingenuity, creativity, and passion of the folks here! So many come here to learn some about Permaculture, EcoVillage Design, and sustainability, but end up learning so much more. All too often folks that come here end up becoming teachers themselves, by coming as learners and doers, and realizing that they have so much to share and such an amazing place to do it. The land here is magical, the facilities are great and are constantly evolving towards more sustainable design and practice. I have been traveling around for a few years now studying and looking for places that i can do some of the things that lost valley offers, and they seem to have it all in one spot. Thank you LVEC for welcoming me into your community, and i hope that the readers of this get to experience the magic of this place as well!
I am proud to be a member of this community. I came as an intern and have remained as a community member because I believe in the service that Lost Valley is providing to the world. Here we have an opportunity to live and work within the context of an educational center focused on empowering individuals to experiment with new social and environmental paradigms.
The Lost Valley Educational Center has a vastly knowledgeable staff and is the perfect setting for students to gain a very in-depth understanding of both permaculture techniques and a realistic, first-hand experience in the challenges of eco-village living. I would highly recommend the LVEC's Permaculture program to anyone searching for intense, hands-on education in the creation of sustainable agriculture and communities.
It was a great experience! The people were very friendly and I learned a lot in the class. Thanks guys!
My experience here at Lost Valley has been great! The variety of teachers and people at the community really help with learning potential. The teachers really know their stuff and have tons of experience in many different fields. If you want to learn about permaculture in a landscaping way, you've got it! What about properly managing forested land, that as well. Different types of gardening to experiment with. What about social permaculture, or how to apply different methods in dealing with yourself emotionally or pushing yourself into a healthier relationship with others. Would you like to build a community or ecovillage?? There are people here that have the knowledge and resources to give to your answer or direct you to a great source. Running a non-profit?? Same. The broad spectrum of information gathered here can serve you in any array you would like to focus your life. However, because Lost Valley is a turn-key property the buildings need major help, especially to be more ecological and economical for the community and non-profit. THerefore, funding is needed. This organization has so much to offer and I feel like a good boost would create a whirlwind of movement in the right direction for this area and the world as a whole. Good food, great people and an honest drive to move themselves and the planet forward in a positive, alternative fashion that our current structure does not offer. Check out Lost Valley, it's worth it. And help them out!!!! You won't regret the outcome your help would invigorate..... Blessings. R.
I had a great experience as an intern. There were many exciting projects on the land. Other interns and myself had fun working with lots of different plants and a wide variety of useful tools. I continue to visit the land at this permaculture center and see the contributions that myself and many others have made over the years.
As an intern at Lost Valley I have worked in several departments beginning in the Garden, kitchen, working with SASS and with the land crew and now with the Camassia Institute as the teaching assistant intern. I've really benefited from the opportunity to explore the different intern roles here to discover the one that most fit my interests. Working with the Camassia Crew has been amazing for me. I spend lots of time with the students and the instructors of our courses and I've really familiarized myself with the material. As I dive deeper into observing teaching styles, I've really begun to hone in on my own. I also work with the website, marketing and other office work making this internship very well rounded. Lost Valley has definitely provided me lots of chances to grow myself.
I first came to Lost Valley in the fall of 2008 to teach at a movement retreat called "freEmotion." I'm a performer and writer by trade. I hadn't been to LV before that event, but at the time, I was becoming more interested in permaculture and alternative modes of living. I pretty much fell in love with the place. In the fall of 2009 (a year later), I took the plunge and put all of my worldly belongings in storage in Portland to come intern at Lost Valley. A few months later, I also took the winter PDC course. Six months have gone by, and I'm still here, finishing up my internship and considering staying on as a resident. It's a wonderful place to learn more about permaculture, sustainable living and ecobuilding. It also seems to be a crossing point for unique, intelligent, talented people. Between the other interns, the residents and the students who are constantly coming and going, I've definitely made some connections that I feel blessed to be able to carry forward in life. I guess I can speak to this place from the multiple perspectives of an event teacher, an intern, and a student. In all of those regards, it has the capacity to be a life-changing place. I'd definitely recommend spending some time at Lost Valley Educational Center.
Lost Valley has made a huge impact on my life. I have known about Lost Valley for a long time through my interest in Permaculture. I decided to move there in 2008 after returning to Oregon after months of traveling after graduating college. I became the Kitchen Manager and resident of the community in March 2008. During my time there I was able to help start a co-op and create stronger alliances with local farmers and producers. We already produce much of our fresh eggs and produce on site. We are now over 80% local, with most fresh foods coming from within 10 miles. We were also able to glean and preserve thousands of pounds of local fruits and vegetables, and used various methods of preservation to hold onto this bounty throughout the lean winter months. In 2009, another local group started the Dexter Lake Farmer's Market, and the Lost Valley Kitchens were a big part of the market. Every weekend we brought loaves of freshly baked breads, jams, cinnamon rolls, teas, coffees, and other artisan goodies and value added products which created more interest in the Co-op and more local connections with our community and the local community of Dexter. To cap off the season in 2009, the kitchen hosted a four day Permaculture and Food Skills Intensive. During this course we taught beekeeping, cheesemaking, beer brewing, wine making, artisan cob oven baking, cultured foods, and food preservation (drying, canning, smoking, curing, brining, fermenting, and more). It was a very popular course, and we'll be happy to add it to the regular course offerings through the Camassia Institute (the official Permaculture Educational institute on our 87 acre living/residential "campus"). Besides being able to delve deeper into permaculture and how it relates to food, Lost Valley has been a blessing in so many ways. I've met so many amazing people from all over the world who want to learn about creating a more sustainable new culture and planet, and here we come together as a community to make this reality. It is a very special place and I am proud to serve as a board member to help Lost Valley continue to serve it's mission for another 20 years or more to come.
I completed a year long internship learning about Permaculture and Land management. The experience was highly enlightening and completely hands-on. The teaching was extremely quality and I consider it an invaluable learning experience. Anyone with interest/experience in Permaculture would benefit from studying under one of the NorthWest's elder Permaculturists, Rick Valley. I loved the entire culture at Lost Valley, from the daily work to the community gatherings and intern meetings. Along with the other interns, staff, and LV residents, there were daily meals with vegan options, which was great. The land upon which the Education Center lies is absolutely beautiful in a setting of old doug fir and Oregon White Oak. There is a large Camas meadow around which people taking classes camp. There are several gardens and a creek that runs through the property. It is a great place with amazing people who have so much love and positive vibration to offer the world. I recommend visiting or taking a class if possible...or if you have the freedom and time--do an internship--you won't be disappaointed.