Photo Credit: Belltower Coffeehouse & Studio (Memphis, TN)

Workshops on the Great River Road

Feeling creative? Learn, eat, and craft something new along the Mississippi River with these immersive workshops. Don’t want to jump in? How about some Public Art to leisurely stroll. 


White Bear Center for the Arts  (White Bear Lake, MN)

Cooking classes, digital art classes (bring your iPad), bead embroidery, glass work, leather goods, jewelry making… Over 900 classes taught by more than 100 professional teaching artists! Plus, the gallery is open free to the public and hosts 8 premier exhibitions annually.

Manitou Center (Winona, MN)

Experience holistic development along the river. Move the body in tai chi, kung fu, yoga and other wellness classes!


Pump House Regional Arts Center (La Crosse, WI)

This cultural center represents the Coulee Region’s passion for the arts. Visitors can experience clay, calligraphy, paint, and even fly tying!

The Palate (Stockholm, WI)

Learn how to cook from Judy Krohn, the “green gourmet” who never wastes and loves to reuse! Keep an eye on their calendar for seasonally themed classes.


Beréskin Gallery & Art Academy (Bettendorf, IA)

For a unique evening on the Road, make it a date night and try the Couples Clay workshop.  Bring some wine, they’ll provide the snacks.

Dubuque Museum of Art (Dubuque, IA)

With a calendar chock full of art workshops, with titles like Smelly Art and Noisy Art, you know the kids will love it.  Or, focus on you and give Yoga & Art a try.


Marie’s Wood Carving (Galena, IL)

Beginners to woodcarving can create a Comfort Bird! Some other options include an Owl Face and a Cardinal. 

Cheerful Canvas (Alton, IL)

This art stop combines painting and music in a fun family and individual creative experience! Painters can also bring their own drinks for a sip-and-paint outing.


Missouri Botanical Garden (St Louis, MO)

Yes, there are gardening workshops.  But! How about learning about meatless meals or basket weaving for gathering your herbs?

Free Spirit Studio (Cape Girardeau, MO)

Design a mosaic wine chiller or letter initial! Freestyle mosaic art is also welcomed.


National Quilt Museum (Paducah, KY)

The quilt museum hosts some of the most unique and intricate quilts and fiber art. Visitors can not only look, but they can also learn!

Ephemera Paducah (Paducah, KY)

The creative venue provides different types of art opportunities for people wanting to explore it all. The fun part: chocolate is also considered an art supply! 


Belltower Coffeehouse & Studio (Memphis, TN)

Experienced coffee and clay in one setting? This Memphis hotspot combines pottery courses with a coffee shop refuel after.

BMB Designs (Bartlett, TN)

Want to try to be a silversmith for a day? These workshops work with metal clay and design lockets, chains, pendants and more jewelry making options.


Arkansas State – Mid South (West Memphis, TN)

Maybe it’s a little odd to consider stopping at a community college. But with afternoon classes like mixology (to learn a few go-to cocktails) or an appetizer cooking class, you can up your party game.

Travelers who explore further west of the Mississippi River can come across creative establishments such as Eggshells Kitchen Co. in Little Rock or  The Arts and Science Center for Southeast Arkansas in Pine Bluff! Either way, these local art scenes offer a variety of learning opportunities for individuals and families.


Photo Credit: Mississippi School of Folk Arts

Mississippi School of Folk Arts (Natchez, MS)

Find the center of Mississippi’s traditional arts! Workshops include oil painting, acrylic painting, drawing, watercolor, printmaking and more. 

Regina’s Kitchen Cooking School (Natchez, MS)

Ever considered making Mississippi biscuits? The recipe is one of many delicious foods cooked and served at Regina’s southern restaurant.


Drink Lab (New Orleans, LA)

Mix it up with classes on New Orleans classic drinks! Bourbon and Wine drinkers also have the opportunity to taste and learn. 

Spuddy’s Cajun Cooking Experience (Vacherie, LA)

Groups and individuals learn how to cook authentic Cajun cuisine such as andouille, gumbo, & jambalaya. Reviews rave about Spuddy and his family and, oh yea, the food!