APPALACHIAN HIGHLANDS: Create Appalachia is pleased to announce 3 free interactive online events designed to complement the Leaf & Root & Berry exhibit currently on display in Erwin, TN. Leaf & Root & Berry is an exhibit comprised of botanically themed art. It features work from artists across the Appalachian Highlands. Hung in the shop windows of downtown Erwin, it is also available for view online at

In keeping with the botanical theme of Leaf & Root & Berry, Create Appalachia will offer three interactive programs, each with a focus on Appalachian flora. Award-winning poet and author Rita Sims Quillen will kick the series off with a poetry reading focused on her latest book, Some Notes You Hold. A Q&A and discussion session will follow the reading. River Bryant will lead the second session, “Taking an Oracle Walk,” a “how-to” for a calming nature meditation practice. Bryant has a background in horticulture and teaches for the HERBalachia school of herbalism. The third session will be led by Christy Shivell of Shy Valley Farm Studio and Garden. The topic will be “Landscaping with Herbs and Edibles.” Shy Valley has long been known for its expertise in garden design and its focus on native Appalachian varieties.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021 at 7 PM 

Reading and Discussion with Rita Sims Quillen

A reading from one of the region’s most beloved poets, followed by Q&A and discussion. Create Appalachia has a limited number of copies of Some Notes You Hold for sale at a discounted price of $15. Please email for more information regarding books (regular price $16.95).


Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 7 PM

Taking an Oracle Walk: led by River Bryant

This interactive online workshop will introduce attendees to River’s “Oracle Walk” practice, in which trees form the center of a guided nature mediation. Perfect for those who seek effective methods of relaxation, introspection, and connection to nature. Registrants will receive a handout ahead of time.


Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 6 PM

Landscaping with Herbs and Edibles, led by Christy Shivell of Shy Valley Farm, Studios, & Garden

Learn to transform your landscape with fresh, nutrient-packed food and flavorful herbs, without sacrificing ornamental value. Christy will share a list of her favorite plants for edible landscaping, with an emphasis on beauty and versatility. Native plants will be featured.



All events are free and open to the public. Spaces are limited, so registration is required. To reserve a seat for any of the sessions, please email Katie Hoffman:

Leaf & Root & Berry: an Appalachian Highlands Botanical Art Show & Competition is a collaboration between Create Appalachia and HERBalachia in affiliation with the annual Sassafras Moon Herbal Festival in Erwin, Tennessee. While the festival is cancelled for 2020, mark your calendars for September 18 and 19, 2021.

Create Appalachia is a 501(c) 3 organization dedicated to the integration of arts and business. We strive to showcase our region’s creative work and to provide substantive professional development opportunities for artists and artisans, who are vital to regional economic development.


Katie Hoffman
Executive Director
Create Appalachia
(423) 329-4742