Creston Valley hosting second Kootenay Herb Conference

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College of the Rockies instructor Rachel Beck will lead the Kootenay Herb Conference.

College of the Rockies instructor Rachel Beck will lead the Kootenay Herb Conference.

The College of the Rockies (COTR) is proud to be cosponsoring the second Kootenay Herb Conference, running July 8-11 in Creston.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Herbs: A Part of Everyday Life” and celebrates the centuries-old tradition of using herbs for food and medicine.

Organized by College of the Rockies instructor Rachel Beck, the conference is a spin-off of the herbal practitioner program she has taught through the Creston campus for the past 15 years.

“The conference primary focus is on herbal healthcare practitioners,” said Beck. “But the public will also find the information provided useful. We have workshops for those wanting to learn about the basics and ones for those who are working as herbal practitioners as a career.”

A number of guest speakers will be featured, with a keynote address by Pat Crocker, an award-winning author whose books have sold over 1.25 million copies. Crocker specializes in culinary herbalism, which involves cooking with herbs but also creating medicinal recipes and herb blends.

“She has won just about all the awards there are in herbalism,” said Beck. “She has contributed so much to the industry in terms of her knowledge and skills. We feel very lucky to have her at our conference.”

Other internationally known presenters include Dr. Marisa Marciano, Bev Maya, Connie Kehler, Jazz Mattu, James Christianson and many more. There will also be group panel discussions and full-day intensive workshops on July 11 following the main conference.

The Kootenay Herb Conference will be held at West Creston Community Hall, bordering on the Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area’s 17,000-hectare property. Vendors and entertainment will be on hand, along with a kid zone for kids aged four to 12 with herb-related activities and guided nature walks.

Meals for the weekend will incorporate locally grown foods, highlighting the range of organic and natural grown food items available in the Kootenays.

Learn more about the Kootenay Herb Conference or register at, call 1-866-740-2687 or email To learn more about the COTR herbal practitioner program, visit