Re: Meals
From: Richard L Kohlhaas (
Date: Sun, 20 Sep 2015 20:24:32 -0700 (PDT)
          Community  Meals  at Casa Verde Commons, Colorado Springs, CO   

Since we moved in (2003), we have had community meals twice a week (Sundays, 
and alternating Tues, Weds and Thurs evenings).  The
Sunday meals alternate between brunch and evening meal.  Currently, only 
one-half of families participate; some sign up for only
half the meals, and some may drop out for a cycle or two.  A three-person team 
does the scheduling, coordination, and pantry
maintenance .

We have four-person crews: during one cycle (about 3.5 months), EACH (adult) 
participant MUST be head cook once, assistant cook
once, and on cleanup two times.  Sometimes two people will sign up for all four 
jobs (two times).  The head cook plans the menu,
shops and pays for the food, and then eats free the rest of the cycle. This 
minimizes cash handling and accounting.

Non-participating residents (strictly limited) and guests pay $5 per meal, with 
$3 going to the head cook and $2 to the pantry
fund.  (Guests of the cook are not charged.)  The pantry is additionally 
financed with about one-third of our $5/adult/month
community dues, and is stocked with spices, rice, pasta, flours, condiments, 
lentils, beans, butter, cooking oil, coffee, tea,
etc. The cook can draw on this as needed.  Food is usually served 
cafeteria-style.  If necessary, the cook will prepare a
vegetarian dish and offer gluten-free items.

The schedule for a new cycle (after the number of those participating is 
determined) is posted.  Participants mark the schedule
when they CANNOT do a cooking or cleanup task; the meal coordinator then 
assigns the tasks.

The menu is usually published before the meal by the head cook.  There is a 
"permanent" meal sign-up list; persons who will not
be eating and any guests are urged to so-mark the list at least three days 
before the meal so the cook can plan quantities.

The head cook has first choice of any leftovers, and may offer them to the 
other diners.  Very little is wasted.  If a
participant will miss a mealtime, they can ask another participant to pick up a 
"late plate" for them.

The system works well.  The food is usually very good to excellent. There is a 
variety of cuisines and very rarely has a meal
been more than 15 minutes late, and very few have been missed-usually due to 

Dick Kohlhaas <rlkohl [at]>
Board Member, Cohousing Association of the US
Resident of  Colorado Springs Cohousing Community at Casa Verde Commons
Completed March 2003. 34 units on 4 acres

  • Re: Meals, (continued)
    • Re: Meals Sean Davey, September 15 2015
    • Meals Rod Lambert, September 15 2015
      • Re: Meals Sharon Villines, September 15 2015
        • Re: Meals Sharon Villines, September 15 2015
        • Re: Meals Richard L Kohlhaas, September 20 2015
        • Re: Meals Beverly Jones Redekop, September 23 2015
    • Re: Meals Heather Carver, September 15 2015
    • Re: meals Lynn Nadeau / Maraiah, September 15 2015
      • Re: meals Muriel Kranowski, September 15 2015

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