NOLLVILLE — Location, location, location.

It all started with a vision and a dream for Lizette Pierce, but the location was always wrong as she began her journey to create a peaceful place in nature, a space where she could offer retail and public education.

This journey began in 2006 when she owned something along the lines of her current business, Bushtail Creek Unique Gifts, in Flintstone, Maryland. However, the location didn’t work out, and a move to Hagerstown and years of doing vendor shows eventually led her to the serene place she now calls Nollville home.

“We were looking for our forever home, and we ended up stumbling across it and moving out of Maryland to West Virginia, which was one of the steps we really wanted to take,” Pierce said.

In 2019, the move was made, and it was all about this place, place, place, the perfect place to create that dream she had for so long.

“There is a lot of ground. It has almost 20 acres,” Pierce said. “I had a vision or a dream of making it a family home and garden destination, so families could get out and enjoy the serene place as much as we like it, maybe even educate a little .”

The first steps in creating what is now Bushtail included converting one-third of the barn into retail space, as well as creating a cut flower garden, picnic area and a dog area.

“For the visiting puppies to come and have fun,” she laughed.

But her trip had other plans, as it did for many as 2020 dawned.

“In May 2020, we opened it all up for the public to come and enjoy. Of course you know how 2020 went,” laughed Pierce. “It was slow, needless to say.”

Undeterred, the owner has planned for 2021, scheduling Let There Be Rock School to perform when Bushtail opens for the season. The business, which includes nature education opportunities, is open seasonally from May through November, the first and last full weekends of the month.

Pierce has also sold home-grown produce and earned his egg license, adding to the retail business, which includes animal and nature-infused items.

And she has set her sights on 2022.

“I already knew that the music and the barbecue and getting this type of event would attract more people,” she said with an easy smile.

This year is dedicated to raising awareness for Pierce, not only for his business, but also for education and the community.

“I want the community to share this serene place as well as us, to be able to get out into nature and get away from technology,” she said.

Pausing and laughing, she added, “The technology doesn’t work so well here anyway, so it’s convenient.”

Now Pierce is gearing up for Summerfest on June 25, directly related to this awareness cause. Several local acoustic musicians are lined up as well as several vendors to have tables, including rescues that cover everything from kittens to rabbits to workhorses. A group will also be available to answer questions about homeschooling.

The pollinator garden will be open with several sectioned educational spaces. Pierce plans to open a new educational garden every year for a few years.

As she spoke on the phone, parked in the middle of her lot where cell service is strong, Pierce struggled with the words for what it means to be able to share her property with others in connection with a cause so close to her heart.

“Oh, that fills my heart. Oh my God,” she said.

Pierce thought back to a private event she hosted last year for a homeschool group before moving on.

She added: “Anything I can do to help with education and sharing the knowledge I have. …I’m not young but I’m not old and I have a lot of knowledge. To be able to share that with families, especially homeschoolers and people who love their kids in nature or their kids love being in nature, it’s nice to see them. It’s beautiful.”

Summerfest will run from noon to 5 p.m. at the Bushtail location at 340 Parish Drive, Martinsburg.

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