People & History of Sassafras


Lonnie

Lonnie Galt-Theis  is an environmental educator, herbalist, yoga teacher, gardener, and overall lover of nature and the arts. She has a degree in Anthropology with a focus on the environment, sustainability, and conservation from CU Boulder. Growing up in Southeastern Ohio, she spent much of her time outdoors, connecting to plants and animals, instilling in her a deep love of Appalachia. Since 2013, she has been living and working on Equinox farm, with her main roles being medicine maker and business manager for Equinox Botanicals, a local herbal medicine company her stepfather Paul Strauss created over 40 years ago. In 2014, she brought back Sassafras Camp, which was created and ran by her mother Kathleen Galt for 14 years. Growing up going to camp and then being a counselor, Lonnie learned the ropes of facilitating fun and educational experiences for children and teens. Her intention with Sassafras Camp is to create a space for campers to experience deep nature connection and artistic expression, build lifelong skills and friendships, and have a blast!

Molly Jo

Molly Jo Stanley has been dedicated to studying and teaching ecology, ethnobotany, yoga and ceremony for over 10 years. She aims to awaken the sense of wonder and excitement inherent in students of all ages by weaving the power of stories, music, movement and mindfulness into her lessons.

She hopes to empower all students to reconnect to a sense of place within themselves, their communities, and the great web of life, thereby cultivating a lasting reverence for our extraordinary existence. Molly Jo is currently engaged in Masters studies in Educating for Mindfulness and Sustainability through Antioch University New England. She is honored to return to the wondrous Equinox Farm where the “green spark” within her was so vividly fortified as an herbalism student so many years ago.

Meredith

Best-kept barefoot, Meredith Nicole Bury is committed to bringing smiles, love & light to this world with every breath. She is rooted in her yoga practice, teaching for five years and studying for lifetimes, coupled with yoga’s sister science, Ayurveda, as an Ayurvedic Health Educator. This yogic balance is reflected in her inspired, organized, and community-focused leadership role as the Studio Operations and Staff Manager at Yoga on High. Off the mat, she is a lady living for live music, a coffee connoisseur, and the world’s best plant mom. She made her love for all things green and herb-y official by partaking in United Plant Saver’s internship program in May of 2016. Her heart and toes will never shake that dirt off. This is abundantly clear as she shares this passion with everyone she meets- from students to fellow world travelers to uber drivers.


ORIGINS OF SASSAFRAS

Sassafras Camp was created by Kathleen Galt in 1993. Kathleen ran the camp consecutively for 13 years until retiring in 2006. In 2013, Kathleen’s daughter Lonnie Galt-Theis, revived the camp and is now in her 7th year as director . Following her mother’s format, Lonnie continued to invite local artists and nature experts to teach classes, as well as expanding educational opportunities into new realms. Lonnie envisioned yoga, theater, and healthy food education becoming a more prominent part of the camp and was able to recruit local and regional experts in these fields.

Many thanks to Morgan Gotfried, Olivia Strauss, and Becky Clark for their contribution during the first 3-4 years.

United Plant Savers has been a generous supporter of Sassafras Camp and local children by providing need-based scholarships over the past three years. Consider supporting their mission to promote and strengthen conservation of native medicinal plants and their habitats by becoming a member. https://unitedplantsavers.org/join-ups/