Friday: FSU Appalachian Festival Symposium

Landscapes and Livelihoods

Friday, September 16, on FSU’s Upper Quad, behind Old Main
Free On Campus Parking in Upper Lots

The future is hemp2 PM The Future is Hemp: A Presentation and Discussion of the Most Amazing Plant Members of the Mountain Maryland Hemp Alliancee

This presentation will include a short talk on what hemp is, how it is used, and how local growers see it moving forward. Local hemp products will be displayed, and local experts will be on hand to answer questions about hemp growth and hemp uses. The presentation will be led by the Mountain Maryland Hemp Alliance members..

WMaryland Trail3 PM Western Maryland Trail Expansion, “The Tale of Two Trails”
Laura Freeman Legge and Steve Storck

This presentation features two visions for trail expansion in western Maryland, exploring the benefits and risks of such proposals. The program will focus on two proposed trails, the George’svCreek Trail and the Wild Youghiogheny Trail. While the geography of both share common characteristics in their coal and logging heritage, they differ in terms of proximity to population, environmental vitality., and legislative protections.

Laura Legge is the former Mayor of the Town of Westernport, Secretary of Mountain Maryland Trails, Chair of the trail development committee for MMT, and the Allegany County Circuit Rider through Maryland Rural Development Corp. where I work directly with the Towns of Lonaconing, Westernport, and Luke.

Steve Storck has worked in the outdoor recreation and environmental education fields for more than 40
years. Steve has a research specialization in recreation ecology with an emphasis on trail planning and recreational
impacts of trail users on the environment. His love and respect for the Youghiogheny Wild River, Maryland’s only Wilddesignated River, is founded in his lifetime of wandering its shores, wading its waters, paddling its length, and  studying its history.


Jane Rohde4 PM Intentional, Inclusive, and Intergenerational – the Future of Community Living, Jane Rohde

As silos continue to be broken down, the essence of living for all ages is being incorporated into the overall design of community at all scales. It is no longer acceptable to segregate older adults from the community, if their desire is to be part of an intergenerational community supporting the engagement of active, purposeful, and meaningful living. The goal is to provide environments that encourage all individuals to maximize their abilities resulting in maximized positive outcomes. This presentation will complete an update on trends for the direction for community living and the related healthcare, service, and amenity marketplace from a wellness, sustainable, and inclusive perspective.

In 2015, Jane Rohde received the first Changemaker Award for Environments for Aging from The
Center for Health Design and in 2018, she received the ASID Design for Humanity Award, was recognized as an
Honorary Alumni of Clemson University’s Architecture + Health program, and was honored as one of the top
ten Women in Design demonstrating leadership in healthcare and senior living design. In 2020, Jane received
the Pioneer Award from the Facilities Guidelines Institute for her work on the completion and ongoing cycle
updates to the Guidelines for Design and Construction of Residential Health, Care, and Support Facilities and
was recognized as a Green Globes Fellow by the Green Building Initiative in 2021.

Mt Hope, WV: Coal, Class and Color5 PM Biomimicry at a Systems Level, Ben Friton

This presentation provides an exploration of the laws governing thriving ecosystems that allow them to grow indefinitely and how humans can leverage biomimicry in our relationships, dwellings, farms, communities and society. Ben’s time in politics as well as his time with refugees and the food insecure and displaced, give him rare insights on the interface of economics and ecology, and some surprising ways in which human history has determined the world we’ve inherited and what we can do about it.

Ben Friton is a father, partner, soil ecologist, consultant and educator from the Washington DC area. For more than a decade he was a speech professional working with politicians, Heads of State, CEO’s, and philanthropic icons from around the world. In 2010, with the goal of helping to increase educational awareness and hyper-local food resiliency, he co-founded a nonprofit called Can YA Love. Using biomimicry and his patented vertical gardening systems, he works to help people restore degraded lands into thriving, functioning ecosystems that also meet the acute needs of people. In 2014 he joined ‘Forested,’ a community-scale research food forest, to help develop the most ecologicallysound agro-ecosystem possible… a system that improves soil and water quality, without requiring irrigation nor synthetic fertilizers and pesticides.

Brownsville6 PM The Brownsville Project, Clory Jackson

As part of the Frostburg Arts & Entertainment District’s strategic plan, FrostburgFirst – a Maryland Main Street Community, Inc. is facilitating a new public art installation in collaboration with The Brownsville Project to highlight the often-overlooked impact of the Brownsville community on the history and culture of Frostburg. A public art installation in the Frostburg Arts & Entertainment District that honors the requests of the descendants while highlighting the importance of the contribution of the community to the  history and culture of Frostburg will be a strong step forward in addressing reparations and encouraging a more diverse, inclusive representation of the Frostburg community as a whole.

sparky.jpg7 PM Dinner on the Grounds: Songs for Environmental and Social Justice
with Sparky and Rhonda Rucker & Michael and Carrie Kline