After a long cold winter, a spring weekend in the Ozarks is just what the doctor ordered. One way to fill that prescription is by attending the Shannondale Craft Camp, March 19-22, in Shannon County, deep in the heart of the Missouri Ozarks.

Craft enthusiasts can choose from dozens of classes during this jam-packed extended weekend, plus enjoy delicious home-cooked meals and gorgeous Ozarks scenery.

The Shannondale Craft Camp (SCC), which started in 2003, “is one of the only craft programs of this scope and depth in the country,” said founder and former program director Barbara Johnson, “and offers an unforgettable experience for hand-crafters of all skill levels.”

This year, SCC welcomes new co-directors, Becky Edwards and John Mullarkey, as well as an earlier date (March instead of April), and a modified class list and structure. What remains the same is the opportunity for an amazing weekend of fellowship, fun, creativity and learning. The icing on the cake is that the woods along winding Highway 19 should be full of redbuds, serviceberry and dogwood blossoms, making for a scenic spring drive.

Although similar to the Christianson Native Craft Workshop (CNCW) held at Shannondale every August (, the spring workshop is shorter and is not limited to traditional local crafts. It offers a wide variety of both old-time and modern crafts, with several new classes added each year. Most classes require no prior experience or skill.

Participants can focus on just one or two crafts over several days, or can take as many courses as they can fit in. Most students are able to complete several projects during the weekend.

The purpose of SCC is to continue and expand what the CNCW mission has been for the past 40 years – to spread and disseminate the skills of traditional crafts of the area and stimulate the local economy.

Pastor Jeffrey Fulk of the Shannondale Community Center approached Johnson about creating a spring craft workshop following her first stint as director of CNCW in 2001-02. With the blessing of the CNCW board of directors, the SCC workshop was created and is now in its twelfth year. Last year, Johnson and her family turned over the SCC reins to Edwards and Mullarkey.

Before you go:

Shannondale Craft Camp is held annually in March or April at the Shannondale Community Center’s Timber Lodge on Highway 19, about halfway between Salem and Eminence, in Shannon County, Mo.

Visit for detailed information about classes, instructors, schedule and lodging, or check out the Facebook page, Shannondale Craft Camp. The full-time fee, including tuition, on-site lodging and nine hearty meals prepared by local cooks, is $240; other pricing options include camping, no lodging, lunches only, or tuition only. Registration closes March 12, so don't delay. For more information, contact Becky Edwards at

This year's courses include stained glass, wagon wheel rug, mola applique, slow-cooker soap, leather working, locker hooking, twined rag rugs, assorted jewelry, Shaker tape seat weaving, chair caning, penny rugs, pine needle baskets, felting, linoleum block carving and printing, bookbinding, and more.