Posted by Carrie Ray
on Apr 19, 2012 | Comments Off on Moving Forward In The Mountains – Growing Appalachia 2012
From our partners at Kentuckians for the Commonwealth:
Approximately 80 people ranging from the novice gardener to commercial farmers to people simply looking to make their homes more energy efficient attended Growing Appalachia on Saturday, April 14th . The conference brought people from all over Kentucky and several folks from West Virginia to not only attend the wide range of workshops offered this year, but also to start a conversation about what is possible in the mountains. “My favorite part of all of this is seeing how it is all connected. We come with interests in growing, in energy. We all have different pieces. It was a good day. Great food!” said Sr. Kathy Curtis, Floyd Co. KFTC member and Grow Appalachia Program Director. Great food is right. Much of the lunch served was local and/or organic. Participants were all excited to be eating the food we were there to talk about growing!
“I think we had a good cross state discussion between West Virginia and Kentucky about what it takes to get farmers markets off the ground. Turns out we are all facing the same challenges, so it was good to hear about different approach.”
-Beverly May, Floyd County member
Many participants were excited about the amount of information they received and eager to put it to good use. “I was enthused about coming because I knew that I am making a concentrated effort at gardening. I filled half a notebook with information. If we had had more time, some of those topics could have gone on for half a day – easily,” said Sister Mary Going, Floyd County KFTC member. Participants were invited to complete an evaluation form identifying topics they would like to learn more about and even new topics for workshops later in the year or even as ideas for next year’s conference.
“For some people, we need to go back and reclaim our life, our economy, our relationships and living arrangements from the past. For others we need to go forward – taking with us some of the good from the past – but creating new arrangements.” Moving forward was the theme of keynote speaker, Anthony Flaccavento’s address at Growing Appalachia this year, who posed the question to participants, “How do we move forward?” Preparing to do just that, participants lingered at the conference center long after the workshops had ended and many continued the conversation at a restaurant known for its local food until late in the evening.
The event was staffed and planned largely by Floyd and Knott County members who have given much of their time, effort and talent over the past few months to make this year’s Growing Appalachia a success. A big “Thank You” to all who helped make this year’s conference a success!