Edible Mountain

At Wheeling's Vineyard Hills

Working to make Ohio County one of the healthiest communities in Appalachia.


Developing Wheeling’s “Edible Mountain” (ie. Vineyard Hills) – its forests and public spaces – while celebrating the rich community history of this hill.

Public Health

A public health initiative that promotes evidence-based best practices within six key focus areas known to improve health and wellbeing.

Mission / Goals / Strategy

Mission: Eliminate the health disparities experienced by Wheeling's urban youth. 

Goals: Wheeling’s children will demonstrate marked improvement in physical and mental health by 2025.  

Strategy: Develop an interdisciplinary coalition to engage youth and youth-serving organizations in two ways:

Improving the wellbeing of 1000+ kids living in downtown neighborhoods to match those in surrounding neighborhoods will turn Ohio County into one of the healthiest counties in Appalachia


Joe Sparksman, MS, Men of Change

Ava, Chair, Edible Mountain Steering Committee Steering Committee Co-Chair 

Siyan, Member, Edible Mountain Steering Committee

Joshua, Never Bored Board

Martha Wright, Laughlin Memorial Chapel  Steering Committee Secretary

Dr. Amy Jean Chao, Pediatric Endocrinologist (UPMC) Steering Committee Co-Chair 

Rod Lee, Nelson Jordan Center

Rochelle Barry, City of Wheeling Parks and Recreation

Rosemary Ketchum, Edible Mountain

Glynis Board, Ed. M. Grow Ohio Valley

Kate Marshall, Mother Jones Center for Resilient Community

Karen Cox, MS

WVU Extension

Chuck Kleine, Site Development

Danny Swan, Grow Ohio Valley

Oceanna Smith, Youth Leadership Liaison

Molly Check, Oglebay Schrader Center

Healthy Cities and Counties Challenge

"The City of Wheeling, with Fun-Raiser, Grow Ohio Valley, Inc., Operation YURT, West Virginia University School of Public Health Prevention Resource Center, FARMacy, Wheeling Health Right, West Virginia Bureau of Public Health and West Virginia University Extension – Ohio County, is working to create what they call the “Edible Mountain,” a holistic, place-based youth wellness hub that aims to increase access to local food, physical fitness, social connection, and creative exploration.

Edible Mountain builds on years of teamwork and strives to improve the health of Wheeling’s children by marking improvement in physical and mental health indicators by 2025. 

This team seeks to create a central location where youth in Wheeling can take part in creative recreation and cooperative education. Youth who participate will not only improve their own health outcomes, but also will influence health across the community by taking the lead on a youth advisory board known as the Never Bored Board. Wheeling’s youth engagement will be transformative in improving the health outcomes of the city’s residents and will focus on local-food-based nutrition intervention, physical fitness, creative play, sense of belonging, unstructured exploration and artistic expression.