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New Workshops!

Spring 2017 Workshops and Bus Tours

Southern Exposure is offering 36 exciting on-site workshops and two fun-filled group bus tours during the Spring 2017 season, which begins on March 31 and continues until May 25. You'll find 11 brand new workshops for your enjoyment, plus many of your spring favorites! In fact, there's a workshop for virtually every taste or interest, so make your plans today! Click here for the full schedule.

Tell A Friend About Us!

If you have friends who've never been to Southern Exposure, ask them to check out our Spring 2017 schedule. We have many fun events that are ideal for newcomers. Remind your friends to join our mailing list today!

View Workshops for Spring 2017:

Workshops - Calendar Listing | Workshops - Register Online Now! | Contact Us & Map

All workshops are held on the grounds of Southern Exposure and most run for about two hours. Please register online in advance to assure your spot. Prices include all supplies
(if applicable), any food or beverage, and tax. Click here to register online.

Explore These New Workshop Choices:

SE-03, Sat., April 1, 9:00 a.m., $75 NEW!
There’s a Gallic Rooster in my garden!

On S.E. tours to Europe, we see the beautiful and proud rooster immortalized in statues on top of buildings, bridges, and country rooftops. The early Kings of France adopted this proud bird as a strong Christian symbol that the rooster represents. Prior to being arrested, Jesus predicted that Peter would deny him three times before the rooster crowed on the following morning. Its crowing at the dawning of each new morning made it a French symbol of the daily victory of light over darkness and the triumph of good over evil. Spend an afternoon aging a concrete rooster standing 20 inches tall for your garden or interior. This beautiful and proud sculpture can adorn your outside landscape all year round. Chef Elsie will prepare a beautiful French inspired breakfast similar to the one we experienced on the Champs-Elysées in Paris. Register Now!

SE-04, Sat., Aprill 1, 1:00 p.m., $75 NEW!
Bathing is for the birds!

The pineapple has been a symbol of hospitality since the days of the early American colonies. The legend began with sea captains who sailed and returned to the colonies bearing their cargo of fruits, spices, and rum. According to the legend, the captain would spear a pineapple on a fence post outside his home to let his friends know of his safe return from sea. The pineapple was an invitation for them to visit. As the tradition grew, merchants added the pineapple to their signs--and it proudly serves as our logo as well. Using a thirteen-inch, one-piece birdbath, you will learn the art of white pickling and glazing, a technique frequently used by colonist who settled in the late 1600s to mid-1700s. Chef Elsie is featured at the beginning of this experience with her rendition of a New England theme luncheon. Register Now!

SE-05, Sun., April 2, 1:00 p.m., $85 NEW!
Timeless art for your garden!

Gargoyles are a fascinating element of Medieval Architecture. These delightful, amazing sculptures are most often associated with Medieval Churches and Cathedrals, but they were also used to accentuate English Gothic castles. Gargoyles are recognized as “guardians” of the buildings in the form of abstract symbols designed to ward off evil spirits. In this workshop, you will enjoy listening to the history and folklore of gargoyles followed by a short lesson on the modern techniques of dry brushing concrete garden statuary. You will take home an eighteen inch x twenty-two inch concrete gargoyle to place in your garden. First, Chef Elsie will tantalize your tastebuds with an old English luncheon which we enjoyed on our last overseas tour to England, Wales, and Scotland. Register Now!

SE-08, Sat., April 8, 8:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m., $215 NEW!

Uncover the gastronomic secrets behind Chicago’s premiere lakefront neighborhood as you taste scrumptious foods and fare from seven locally owned businesses. To learn the path that Chicago took to greatness, the real adventure starts in the local communities where you will unearth why natives love to eat, drink, and live in the Windy City. Spend a day in Gold Coast and Old Town, the largest area in Chicago. Succulent food samples are served from locally owned stores, shops, and restaurants. You begin the day by enjoying one of Chef Elsie’s on-board European Breakfasts while sipping several of Curtis’s special morning refreshments. After a three hour journey, which includes visits to: Lou Mainati’s Chicago Style Pizza; The Spice House; La Fournette French Bakery and Pastry; Kamehacki Old Town..Japanese-Style restaurant; Old Town Oil and Vinegars; Tea Gschwendner; and The Fudge Shop, you’re free to wander and enjoy some shopping in Old Town. Before we begin our trip home, we’ll meet for dinner at a local Old Town restaurant. The cost of the trip includes: bus fees, breakfast on board, tickets for the walking/tasting tour, dinner in Old Town, and the many refreshments to and from this exciting destination. Bon Appétit. Register Now!

SE-11, Sun., April 9, 1:00 p.m., $80 NEW!
The Queen owns the swans and counts them!

On a lovely S.E. tour of England, Wales, and Scotland, our group was scolded for feeding the swans along the boardwalk to a boat on our way to see Beatrice Potter’s estates in the Lake District. An elderly couple approached us and said, “The Queen of England owns all the swans. Do not feed them.” We all were taken back by the comment and politely granted our apologies. More accurately, any swan in open waters in England and Wales does belong to the Queen. This was more valid back in medieval times when swans were a delegacy reserved for the wealthiest English tables. Today the Swan law stands, so does the annual census of Swans on the River Thames, a centuries-old tradition known as Swan Upping. At one of the Art Fair celebrations, we saw an intricate Swan head formed with wire and a body of a river rock. We recreated this wonderful sculpture for you to enjoy. Chef Elsie will prepare a Marchelous British luncheon using recipes she gathered on this delightful tour before creating this swan sculpture. Register Now!

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How to Register for a Workshop:

We strongly encourage you to register online using a major credit card. It's fast, easy and fully secure to protect your privacy. Just click on the button below to get started. You will receive a receipt via e-mail automatically.

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To learn more about our Spring 2017 schedule, select one of links below or call the Southern Exposure office at (269) 962-1255 during normal business hours.

Other Helpful Links:

Contact Us
Spring 2017 Schedule

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Overseas Travel Adventures
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SE-16, Wed., Aprill 19, 6:30 p.m., $75 NEW!
Beautiful, rustic decoration easily customized

On a recent S.E. tour to India, we learned that the ancient people of this Country are credited with discovering the many uses of the jute plant. While the Indians used small amounts of the plant to make rope and paper, upon its discovery in the 1790’s by English traders, the plant had not yet seen massive exportation. Today, the jute plant provides burlap for manufacturing bags to transport beans and coffee around the world. We use the strong fibers to create sandbags to guard against flooding, many of us shield our tender vegetation with burlap during our harsh winters. Burlap may also be manufactured for artwork, its tough fibers stretched to make a toy of canvas for painting. In this workshop, we will use this versatile fabric to create a beautiful fourteen inch wreath that can be used for year round decoration. Chef Elsie will prepare a wonderful India inspired dinner celebrating the many herbs and spices of this region. Register Now!

SE-18, Sat, April 22, 9:00 a.m., $70 NEW!
Attracting butterflies to the garden with this beautiful water feature
If you want to add the living color of butterflies to your garden, start by using some of the recommendations from this workshop. The right combination of plants, flowers, and water will create a sanctuary for our winged visitors. In our time together, we will focus on flora, migration, and habits of the butterflies in Southern Michigan. We will then create a beautiful butterfly bath using concrete and vintage china. Chef Elsie will prepare a wonderful breakfast for you to enjoy prior to our learning and creativity. Register Now!

SE-21, Wed., April 26, 6:30 p.m., $75 NEW!
Traditions meet art!

Bottle Sculptures are common in the Southern United States where legend portrays them as a way to capture evil spirits. We first saw them on a S.E. tour to Africa where legend has it that the noise made by the wind across the mouth of the bottle traps evil and then is killed by the sun’s rays. Typically, a metal frame or pieces of rebar are placed in the ground and topped with inverted wine bottles. For a creative take on a bottle tree, wine bottles are threaded onto pieces of rebar making a unique and whimsical sculpture. This four-foot metal and colorful bottle scupture with repurposed wine bottles will give your garden year around protection with its rich folklore and design. Chef Elsie will have a wonderful Southern-inspired dinner before creating your bottle sculpture rich in tradition and folklore. Register Now!

SE-26, Wed., May 3, 6:30 p.m., $75 NEW!
HIGH WIRE GARDEN ART & AUSTRIAN DINNER: Intricate wire sculpturing!

Wire is an extraordinary capable sculptural material. It can at once represent the airy weightlessness of a strand of hair or the taunt power of a rigid muscle of rope. Using recycled cargo straps, the wire twists and weaves until it forms a human-like sculpture. Inspired by both high Renaissance Figurative Art and several garden designs in Vienna, we really found a gem in this playful sculpture. This 30-inch twisted wire person holding a birdbath is perfect for year round display both in landscape, interior design, or containers. Chef Elsie will prepare an Austrian Dinner with recipes she collected on her S.E. riverboat trip to Vienna. Register Now!

SE-27, Thurs., May 4, 6:30 p.m., $75 NEW!

S. E. takes great delight in using ordinary things in unintended and unexpected ways. We enjoy the puzzled looks on the faces of clerks at Consumers Concrete when they ask about our current projects. Used for reinforcing concrete, rebar can be heated and formed into stand-alone art. Inspired by the rebar people from a Budapest park, we have recreated these wonderful five foot rebar sculptures. The mount of the hands allow for a hanging basket, bird feeder, or wreath for year-round enjoyment. Our favorite use is holding a lantern to illuminate a porch or entry. Whatever your preference, you will find this project interesting and charming. Chef Elsie will prepare a Hungarian Dinner for you to enjoy before creating these unique rebar people. Register Now!

SE-36, Sun., May 21, 1:00 p.m., $70 NEW!

A beautiful combination of black and white plants inspires this workshop. We experienced this planting tradition when we visited the Giverny Musee’ des Impressionisms in France. The Jardins were planted with large areas of black foliage with contrasting white plants, and the mix was stunning. We have found that planting black and white vintage plants amongst our landscapes and containers at S.E. produces a calm and harmonious space. Let us share the annuals, shade dwellers, perennials, and bi-annuals that follow this rich tradition. Each guest will take home four black and white plants to enjoy. Chef Elsie will prepare an all-white French luncheon with Chocolate Crème Brule for dessert. Register Now!

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