- What We Teach
- Learning Opportunities
- Community Connections
- The Folk School Website
- Olive’s Porch
Olive’s Porch, a new Folk School experience in downtown Murphy, is opening this winter! Named after the school’s co-founder Olive Dame Campbell, the location at 27 Peachtree Street features classroom space, a retail shop showcasing the work of Appalachian artists, and a studio space dedicated to the Artist in Residence Program. Created by feedback from community listening sessions, and building on the spirit of our Fall Festival, Olive’s Porch offers a way to celebrate Appalachian heritage all year long.
Olive’s Porch will host hands-on workshops for youth and adults on evenings and weekends, emphasizing traditional Appalachian craft, music, and dance. A variety of discussions, demonstrations, artist markets, seasonal programs for school-age youth, and other community-focused events will be presented year-round.
In addition to the offerings downtown, Olive’s Porch will work alongside other non-profits,
organizations, and area schools to bring new learning opportunities directly to our friends in
Cherokee County and the surrounding area.
Connect with Olive’s Porch! Sign up for their email list here.
Raised in Forsyth County, North Carolina, Zak is a self-taught textile artist whose work draws on Southern textile traditions and incorporates repurposed fabrics. He practices an approach to design that is intuitive and improvisational. He is especially drawn to preserving the stories of quilts and specializes in memory quilts and burial quilts. His work has been featured on the red carpet of the Met Gala, various magazines, websites, and galleries. His QUILTY NOOK community connects and inspires quilters and makers all over the world.
Becky Hill is a percussive dancer, choreographer and square dance caller. She was a 2021 Strathmore Artist-in-Residence, a 2018 OneBeat Fellow for the U.S. State Department and is currently seeking her MFA in dance at the University of Maryland. She performs with the T-Mart Rounders, calls square dances and teaches dance throughout the country. As an avid organizer and teacher, Becky’s work is deeply rooted in the intersections between music, dance, and community. She believes there is always more to learn and is dedicated to creating innovative choreography rooted in Appalachian music and dance.
Photo: Margot Schulman
Bonnie Lenneman is an herbalist, forager, cook, wildcrafter, gardener, and curious human living in Brasstown, NC. She is actively involved in the earthskills movement, teaches and assists classes in traditional foods and herbalism, and shares herbal products and seasonal offerings through her business, Hearth & Hedge. Bonnie has studied traditional medicine and foodways at the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, North Carolina; the Lane’s End Homestead in Brasstown; the BotanoLogos School of Herbal Studies in Clayton, Georgia; and the Terra Sylva School of Botanical Medicine in Madison County, North Carolina. “Ultimately, though,” Bonnie says, “the plants have been my greatest teachers. It has been through curious exploration of and deep relationship with the woods, fields, and gardens around me that I have learned to trust my own intuition and senses in developing my skills as an herbalist.”
Olive’s Porch seeks feedback directly from locals and visitors in developing this space and its programs. We’re always looking for people with roots in the community, experience working in downtown businesses, and interest in traditional art and creative experiences to be part of our Local Advisory Committee or to join our broader team. Keep an eye on this blog page and the Olive’s Porch eNewsletter for more information about how to get involved.
Interested in being part of this new experience? Olive’s Porch is hiring! View our open positions and apply: