Meet Your Neighbor

The Reluctant Innkeeper

Tea lady turns to fill empty spaces


Edit: Purva 8/29

Maureen Burns-Hooker, owner of Herbal Sage Teas, is bringing her herbal knowledge to Pomeroy, Ohio, renovating a downtown building to offer classes in medicinal herbs to SE Ohio. On the corner of 2nd and Butternut Streets, she’s opening classrooms -- and bedrooms -- to serve the region.

She’s become the "Reluctant Innkeeper," -- as she calls herself -- renovating and opening up two rooms filled with antiques, from which she housed guests in town for Big Bend Blues Bash this past weekend.

“I’m serving as overflow for the inn in town. They are just booked,” said Maureen, as she managed a few volunteers getting ready for the crowd. She sat for a few minutes on this busy Wednesday to share her entrepreneurial dreams.

She shoos away visitors to her door seeking some of her teas, which she sells in local grocery stores, online and at a booth in local farmer’s markets. But no retail. Maureen is not new to entrepreneurship, having run retail outlets in Ohio cities before deciding to start Herbal Sage Tea in Southeast Ohio. And she likes the pace of her tea business just fine.

Today, amid preparation for her guests, she is deep into study for her medicinal practice, keeping up with her certifications and knowledge. She points to some of her old bookshelves, crowded with medical knowledge of plants and old-timey remedies in ancient packaging. Maureen is steeped (pun intended) in herbs, teas and spices that heal.

Special tea blends like Happy Belly Organic Loose Leaf tea and Brain Food Loose Leaf Organic tea are specially crafted using this ancient knowledge. Herbal Sage Tea Company offers a sage tea, after the company name, that can be used by women experiencing night sweats and hot flashes. Another blended brew of chamomile and other herbs, helps usher sippers toward sleep.

Maureen uses mainly organic ingredients she sources herself or from sanctuaries like the United Plant Savers in Meigs County.

Visit or call 740-594-5522 for more information.


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