Trillium Festival 2019

Volunteer Stewardship Opportunities
Help AOA protect our Native Wildflowers and Landscapes

Spending time in AOA’s beautiful forests can be very peaceful and therapeutic – as well as providing opportunities for viewing the many beautiful wildflowers and camaraderie with fellow conservationists. You can help us make a difference and enhance the quality of the rare and wonderful native habitats at our preserves.

We need your assistance to combat the Garlic Mustard and invasive scourge on our preserves. We know garlic mustard pulling is not the most glamorous activity, but it is badly needed to protect our native wildflowers. We cannot do it alone.

We have scheduled a series of organized work days each week for volunteers to visit our preserves and assist with our habitat protection and stewardship activities. Please join us.

Work Day Schedule and Info
Birdwatching 2019

Saturday, April 27
Birdwatching Hike Along Scioto River at M.G. Schneider Preserve

Enjoy a birding expedition to the wilds of the Scioto River at AOA’s sprawling Marsha Gunder Schneider Preserve in Pickaway County. We will hike a variety of bottomland habitats searching for early migrants that are winging their way north along the Scioto River flyway. We will also check out the resident birds and summer breeders in the area – plus the heron rookery and squatting bald eagle nest in the large sycamore trees along the river. Mike Galloway will lead this hike. All levels of birders are welcome.

Event Information
Bison Hollow 4-28-19

Sunday, April 28
Wildflower Hike at Bison Hollow Preserve

Making up for the rain-impacted hike two weeks ago AOA has scheduled a new hike to view the wildflowers at AOA’s Bison Hollow Preserve. Enjoy a springtime ramble through the gorge and admire the spring wildflower show which carpets the floor of the mature hardwood forest.

AOA’s Bison Hollow Preserve features spectacular scenery located in the southern extent of the picturesque Hocking Hills, straddling the Hocking – Vinton County line. The 400+ acre preserve showcases typical Hocking Hills landscapes including high rock walls that line the sides of the main gorge, sandstone outcrops and numerous waterfalls. The property includes mature to older growth forests with large hemlock groves.

Event Information
Birdwatching 2019

Bison Hollow in Bloom for Ephemeral Wildflower Hike

It turned out to be a beautiful day for the 14 hardy souls who braved the rainy skies and forecast for the Ephemeral Hike at Bison Hollow. We delayed entering the woods for about 40 minutes until the rain slowed, giving way to a beautiful spring day and blue skies to accent the plethora of blooming wildflowers and gorgeous waterfalls. Most of us spent several hours rambling through the gorge, across streams and up the steep hillsides. Thanks to Angela Carter for driving from Cincinnati to lead the hike and identify the many wildflowers and plants we encountered. Credit to John Potter and Kathy Cubert for the great photos from the day.

AOA is squeezing in another hike at Bison Hollow on April 28th for those who still wanting to make this popular trip. A new cycle of mid-spring wildflowers should be in bloom by then.

Bison Hollow 2019
Bison Hollow 2019
Bison Hollow 2019
Bison Hollow 2019
Bison Hollow 2019
Bison Hollow 2019

AOA Sponsors Spring Wildflower Photo Contest

Capture the beauty of our fabulous Preserves in their finest Spring attire!

AOA is sponsoring a photo contest focused on springtime wildflowers – April 1 through May 31. Attend an AOA event at one of our preserves and photograph some of our native wildflowers. All photo entries must be from an AOA property.

Rules and entry details will be posted shortly. Photos will be judged by noted nature photographers Jim McCormac and Robert Henn. Prizes donated by REI, NANPA, Kelbyone and Midwest Photo.

Download Contest Brochure
Meet the Judges
Enter Advanced Photo Contest
Enter Beginner Photo Contest
AOA Spring Photo Contest
Tree Planting Success

Tree Planting Makes a Difference

AOA volunteers braved a cold, wet, windy day to plant and stake 300 trees along the Hocking River in southern Fairfield County. The new trees will stabilize an eroding river bank on AOA’s Ellinger Preserve.

Reforestation of the fields adjacent to the river will restore the bottomland forests, helping to protect the Hocking River riparian corridor and water quality.

2018 AOA Year in Review Available

Thanks to your support 2018 was another very successful year for land and water conservation. AOA celebrated the conservation of 10 new properties totaling nearly 800 acres. These included over 500 acres along Big Darby Creek and 110 acres in the Hocking Hills, two primary AOA initiatives..

Check out our most recent activities and accomplishments in our most recent Year in Review. If you would like to receive a hard copy via mail, please contact AOA at

2018 Year in Review
AOA 2018 Year in Review Now Available

AOA Conserves Two Properties Along Big Darby Creek
530 Acres Added to the Big Darby Creek Conservation Corridor

Two Pickaway County properties were recently added to AOA’s Big Darby Creek Conservation Corridor. Big Darby Creek is a National and State designated Scenic River that is recognized as one of the most diverse waterways in the Midwest. Through this Initiative, AOA seeks to preserve riparian properties and to create a continuous corridor of connected conservation lands to safeguard water quality, natural habitat and scenic qualities of the river.

AOA recently closed on the 276-acre Fickardt Farm property located on the west side of the Big Darby, between Circleville and Darbyville. This site will protect 4,440 linear feet of riparian corridor along the river.

AOA previously acquired Mishe Moneto, a 255-acre property along Big Darby Creek adjacent to Darbyville. This property includes 1.8 miles of riparian frontage along the river which is home to numerous species of mussels including five that have been listed as threatened and/or endangered. Recent bat studies along the Big Darby identified a number of trees supporting summer maternity colonies of endangered Indiana Bats on these properties.

Read Article
Big Darby

AOA Conserves Hocking Canal Lock

Appalachia Ohio Alliance (AOA) partnered with the Canal Society of Ohio to preserve old Hocking Canal Lock No. 8 and a section of the canal in Fairfield County. The Canal Society donated funds to help purchase the canal structure while AOA utilized Clean Ohio grant funds to purchase the canal property. AOA is very grateful to Ronnie and Rita Williams who owned the lock for their interest in preserving this piece of local heritage and saving it from demolition. This property is part of AOA’s Hocking Canal Heritage Corridor Initiative.

Read Article
Hocking Canal

AOA Partners in Ohio Bat Conservation Project
Over 500 Acres to be Conserved

Appalachia Ohio Alliance (AOA) is partnering with several compatible organizations to increase habitat for rare bats in Ohio. A project team, led by prime consultant EnviroScience, Inc., a regional environmental consulting and restoration firm, was selected by the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) to carry out a $5.0 million contract for bat mitigation activities in their Western Management Unit (WMU). AOA and The Conservation Fund, a respected nation-wide conservation organization, are key team members along with several subconsultants.

Read Article

Indiana Bat in flight with Grasshopper meal.

Our Mission

Appalachia Ohio Alliance is dedicated to the conservation and stewardship of our land and water as sustainable natural resources that are an asset and a legacy for our community

Mission and Goals

Support Us

Appalachia Ohio Alliance is a regional non-profit conservancy dedicated to the conservation of land and water resources in central and southeastern Ohio. Find out how you can help our efforts.

Donate Today

Upcoming Events

Get outside with AOA and explore and enjoy the beauty that surrounds us!

Download a printable event list.

Birdwatching Walk at Marsha Schneider Preserve
Apr 27 @ 8:30 am
Enjoy a birding expedition to the wilds of the Scioto River at AOA’s sprawling Marsha Gunder Schneider Preserve in Pickaway County. We will visit different [...]
Wildflower Hike at Bison Hollow Preserve
Apr 28 @ 10:00 am
Making up for the rain-impacted hike two weeks ago we have scheduled another hike to view the wildflowers at AOA’s Bison Hollow Preserve. Enjoy a [...]
Bison Hollow Spring Hike
May 11 all-day
Event Info Coming Soon!
Orchid Hike at Mercer Old Growth Forest
May 19 all-day
Event Info Coming Soon!
Bird Habitat and Nest Box Workshop at Demonstration Site
Jun 8 all-day
Event Info Coming Soon!

Find Events


When we consider what it took to create this landscape, we must also consider what we can do to insure that future generations will also be able to marvel at its beauty.
Paul Knoop
The scenic views, diversity of plants and wildlife, and quiet times in the country will all be enhanced by the security of knowing that things can stay this way into the future.
Larry R. Menchhofer

In the end, I decided to sell my property to AOA because I love it so much. It was hard to part with it – but I am not really parting with it – it is there forever thanks to AOA.

Read Full Testimonial

Steve Fought

Latest News

AOA Moves Forward with Big Darby Creek Conservation – Adds Over 530 Acres

November 27th, 2018|Comments Off on AOA Moves Forward with Big Darby Creek Conservation – Adds Over 530 Acres

AOA Conserves Hocking Canal Lock

November 20th, 2018|Comments Off on AOA Conserves Hocking Canal Lock

AOA Partners in Ohio Bat Conservation Project
Over 500 Acres to be Conserved

November 1st, 2018|Comments Off on AOA Partners in Ohio Bat Conservation Project
Over 500 Acres to be Conserved

AOA Initiatives Featured in The Buckeye Bulletin

October 8th, 2017|Comments Off on AOA Initiatives Featured in The Buckeye Bulletin

AOA Conserves Premiere Medicinal Plant Sanctuary

June 20th, 2017|Comments Off on AOA Conserves Premiere Medicinal Plant Sanctuary