Love is in the air: Adults with disabilities learn the art of truffles for Valentine’s Day

Photo courtesy Joanne Irons

By Joanne Irons
Aspen House/Aspen Services

Joanne Irons’ truffles have been a sought-after staple at many Pagosa Springs fundraisers as well as by family and friends. She makes them in a variety of flavors and all are scrumptious. Just in time for St. Valentine’s Day, she has begun transitioning her truffle-making to the Pagosa adults with disabilities community.

She has long believed that these adults have the capability to run their own business in support of Aspen House and Aspen Services. Truffle-making is going to be that business. 

This past week, Irons held two training classes at Fro Yo. Fro Yo, on Lewis Street, is associated with Aspen House/Aspen Services, the nonprofit planned house for adults with disabilities and accompanying services. Fro Yo has a functional commercial kitchen with ample space. Irons shared her idea with the Aspen House/Aspen Service Board of Directors and June Landgraf, who runs Fro Yo, and the they agreed that Fro Yo would be a perfect fit to try out her concept. 

At the training sessions were Zack and Meredith Irons (who have been helping Joanne Irons make truffles for a few years now), Nick Voelker, Jason Reece, Christopher Brown and Kelly Faber. Together, they were able to turn out over 600 truffles in those two sessions. 

Joanne Irons reports that it was exciting discovering which tasks were good fits for each of the participants. She intends to use what she learned to match the various truffle-making tasks with the individuals most suited to those tasks — all in an attempt to help them take over truffle-making as their own not-for-profit business.

You can acquire these truffles in time for St. Valentine’s Day in packages of two, six or 12 at Fro Yo. Suggested donations are $3, $7.50 and $15, respectively. We welcome your support.