Rocky Fork Enterprise

Bead making, other demos set for Herb Day


Demonstrations have been added to Gahanna's May 11 Herb Day celebration that features an annual plant sale and educational seminars from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Creekside area.

Beth McCollam, parks and recreation marketing coordinator, said the making of herb beads would be taught by Janell Baran, owner/farmer of Newark's Blue Owl Garden Emporium.

Fragrant herbs and special-occasion flowers from weddings and proms could be made into herb beads for jewelry if the plants have been dried and stored properly before the bead-making process, Baran said.

The demonstration begins at 1 p.m. at the Ohio Herb Education Center, 110 Mill St.

John Reese, owner of Black Radish Creamery, will create culinary herbal dishes and provide samples to taste, as well as recipes to take home. His demonstration begins at 11 a.m. at the OHEC.

The final demonstration of the day at 3 p.m. will be a presentation of simple salves by Shannon Barnette, a recreation coordinator at the OHEC.

Barnette will present a simple salve recipe, serving as a basis for other salves like a solid perfume or lip balm.

"Think of it as an all-natural Vick's VapoRub," Barnette said. "Not everything needs to be store-bought when it can be made with simple ingredients at home."

She will discuss oils, their properties and benefits and how to infuse olive oil to be used as a salve.

Brooke Sackenheim, OHEC manager, said Herb Day has something to offer for everyone, and everyone could learn something from herbs.

Educational seminars will be held throughout the day in the upper plaza, including the topics: "Weeds as Companion Plants," "Plants as Edible Landscaping" and "Using Your Garden as Your Medicine Chest."

Anyone with herb-related questions will be able to ask herbalist Debra Knapke from 10 a.m. to noon at the herb information station.

Knapke is the author of five books, including Herb Gardening for the Midwest and Best Garden Plants for Ohio.

The Gahanna Story Trail, the eco-learning component of the Herbal Trail, will open at 12:30 p.m. at the Friendship Park nature trail, 150 Oklahoma Ave.

This year's story, The Acorn, is an original piece of work by Gahanna Lincoln High School creative-writing students.

The students were guided by Angie Starkey, of the Gahanna branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library, on the elements of children's stories, describing the importance of a simple storyline, a slight conflict and a resolution.

Once the story was written, GLHS art students illustrated the pages, the library created ready-to-read interactive prompts, and the Gahanna Department of Parks & Recreation led the effort to have the pages enlarged, framed and placed on pedestals along the nature trail at Friendship Park.

The Acorn will be available to enjoy throughout the summer.