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Hands-On Hopi Pottery at Capitol Reef National Park

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Program #20698RJ

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7 Days | 6 Nights
While all of our learning adventures offer extraordinary value, our "Best Value" programs were rated by our participants themselves who thought their dollar went particularly far.
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. Minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding, and rewarding, programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Mary from Oakland, CA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/13/15 - 09/19/15
This program was great! This was a very rare chance to learn how Hopi pottery is made by making your own pieces with the help of a wonderfully encouraging expert Hopi potter (Alice Dashee). The program guide, Gary Nielsen, raised in the area, has put together a very well planned program of hands-on pottery making, talks and videos about Hopi culture and society, and a few field trips, including a wonderful short hike in Capitol Reef. Alice and Gary do everything to make each participant's experience a rich, absolutely wonderfully memorable one.

Sandy from Pemberville, OH Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 04/19/15 - 04/25/15
No experience necessary for an experience of a lifetime! Although the emphasis of this special program is creating pottery in the Hopi tradition, it is so much more. From visiting Capitol Reef National Park (a hidden gem with spectacular scenery) to a personal and intimate look into Hopi culture, plus sampling some traditional Hopi foods prepared by the Hopi instructors. Hands on Hopi Pottery will give you a greater understanding of Hopi culture and greater appreciation for Hopi pottery. Truly an amazing life transforming journey worth more than the price paid. Don't be intimadated by the pottery making of this trip. The majority of our group had no or little prior pottery making experience, yet the pottery we made turned out beautiful - each piece a different and unique work of art. The Hopi instructors are very helpful, patient and give plenty of individual attention. The guides took care of every detail and are very knowledgable about the area and Hopi culture. They really went the extra mile to make the trip enjoyable. This program is what Road Scholar is all about!

Trudy from Littleton, CO Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 04/19/15 - 04/25/15
My husband and I have just returned from the Hopi Pottery experience in Torrey, Utah. We have traveled extensively all over the world and have never enjoyed or learned as much on a trip as we did on this one. First, Alice, our pottery teacher, was superb. As a master potter, we were in awe of her talent. In addition, her ability to teach to different learning styles, explaining & modeling each step gently, thoroughly & clearly - was exceptional. She did a masterful job of weaving in the importance of the Hopi traditions with each step of the pottery making process. She, her husband Mick and her sister Caroline were very generous in sharing the traditions and stories of their heritage and culture. We learned so much about the Hopis & their beliefs from them. I could listen to their stories all day. We all felt like family by the end of the week. Our group leaders, Gary and Sandy, were amazing from start to finish. They were approachable, friendly, knowledgable, and tuned in to our every need, working long hours to make sure we had everything our hearts desired. They went way above and beyond what a group leader normally does, from providing a huge variety of snacks and drinks to anticipating special needs. They literally thought of everything and were a pleasure to be around. We have been on many group trips and have never experienced such exceptional leadership. Our hotel in Torrey, Utah - the Broken Spur Inn - was perfect. The setting was spectacular. Meals were delicious, with homemade breads, pastries, desserts, salad dressings and chef-prepared entrees. Special dietary needs were easily accommodated. Motel staff was friendly and efficient. Road Scholar should be very proud to offer such an unbelievably unique program with such exceptional teachers and leaders. I can't imagine a more rewarding or enjoyable way to spend a week. Please don't change a thing.

Anita from Conroe, TX Number of programs attended: 4
Date attended: 04/12/15 - 04/18/15
More than a pottery class! If you like well organized activity; Western movie scenery; meeting amazing people; learning of ancient culture mixed with ongoing stories taking place today; then, book this trip. Take your time on the canyon walk, and Gary's offer to use the walking sticks. If possible, allow an extra half day in Salt Lake City for the Mormon Temple Visitor Center tours.

Cornelia from Holland, MI Number of programs attended: 17
Date attended: 04/12/15 - 04/18/15
Of the 16 Elderhostel/Road Scholar programs I've attended, this was the most exceptional. The leadership was highly organized and thoughtful, the instructors were wonderful and helpful in sharing the steps of coiled pottery making and their culture, the sites visited were gorgeous, the pace comfortable. I now appreciate the work and artistry that goes into wonderful Puebloan pottery

John from Powder Springs, GA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 04/12/15 - 04/18/15
A truly rewarding experience. Our group leaders Gary and Sandy and Hopi pottery instructors Alice and Caroline were exceptional. From pottery instruction and demonstrations to cultural discovery to accomodations - everything was over the top. This program was so much more than just a workshop. This is more than just a gem - its a Cown Jewel!

Carol from Coarsegold, CA Number of programs attended: 10
Date attended: 04/12/15 - 04/18/15
I learned so much about the Hopi culture from two wonderful Hope ladies, and all the steps in making Hopi pottery the traditional way. Yucca plants are quite tricky to master, and I really appreciate how a good Hope artist has to be! Our coordinators, Gary and Sandy, had thought of everything, from blankets round the firing area to a variety of medicines and snacks.

Devon from Shoreline, WA Number of programs attended: 5
Date attended: 09/14/14 - 09/20/14
Devon Rickabaugh 4 programs attended. The best program I've attended. A wonderful combination of learning about Hopi pottery, making and decorating our own pottery under the skilled guidance of Hopi potters Alice and Caroline who shared their culture and experiences with us. Leaders Gary and Sandy Nielson worked tirelessly organizing trips to stunning Capital Reef National Park, creating and serving gourmet meals.The week culminated with Alice, husband Mick, and Caroline firing our pottery in the traditional Hopi way. Very satisfying from beginning to end.

Bronnie from Roslyn, NY Number of programs attended: 9
Date attended: 09/14/14 - 09/20/14
Hands on Hopi Pottery is the gem of Road Scholar programs. The Hopi people share their gentle, generous ways and pottery making is an expression of this culture. Gary and Sandy worked tirelessly to meet every need and succeed they did. Every detail was impeccably executed. Give yourself a gift and enjoy this week of wonder!!!

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"capital reef" Uploaded By: Elaine
"capital reef" Uploaded By: Elaine

"Hungry Rock" Uploaded By: Elaine

"chinle formation" Uploaded By: Elaine

"Capital Reef cliff" Uploaded By: Elaine

"Bernie telling stories to our Hopi teachers, Alice and Caroline" Uploaded By: Maria

"Fire built outdoors, the Hopi way" Uploaded By: Maria

"pottery covered with Sheep dung. Very hot fire." Uploaded By: Maria

"using sheep dung on the fire" Uploaded By: Maria

"getting the pottery ready for firing" Uploaded By: Maria

"Harvest Moon" Uploaded By: Maria

"sharing meals. It was nice having a small group. " Uploaded By: Maria

"we feasted nightly" Uploaded By: Maria

"Alice making Hopi Tacos" Uploaded By: Maria

"relaxing in the park" Uploaded By: Maria

"enjoying our harvest" Uploaded By: Maria

"picking apples in Capitol Reef National Park" Uploaded By: Maria

"Class is in session" Uploaded By: Maria

"school house at the park" Uploaded By: Maria

"Capitol Reef National Park" Uploaded By: Maria

"Bernie working on his pottery project" Uploaded By: Maria

"view from our hotel room" Uploaded By: Maria

"Traveling from Salt Lake City to Capitol Reef State Park" Uploaded By: Maria

"Preparing to Paint our Pottery with Paint Made from Wild Spinach Leaf" Uploaded By: Gary

"Hopi Pottery Group April 14-20, 2013" Uploaded By: Gary

"Conference room view" Uploaded By: Gary

"Group hike to Hickman Bridge in Capitol Reef National Park." Uploaded By: Gary

"Here is one happy Road Scholar participant all smiles being able to take home her beautiful pottery." Uploaded By: Gary

"Alice Dashee, our Hopi Pottery Instructor discusses the sacredness and traditions of not only pottery but cultural aspects as well." Uploaded By: Gary

"Second batch after firing." Uploaded By: Gary

"First batch of Hopi Pottery is done!" Uploaded By: Gary

"Now we wait 5 hours while the pottery cooks with intense heat." Uploaded By: Gary

"Stacking dried sheep manure (traditional Hopi method) over our pottery." Uploaded By: Gary

"Setting pottery on ash bed ready to build wall of sheep manure around and over it." Uploaded By: Gary

"Our first batch of Hopi Pottery ready for firing." Uploaded By: Gary

"Using traditional Hopi symbols the pottery is getting ready for firing." Uploaded By: Gary

"Painting our pottery with paint made from wild spinach." Uploaded By: Gary

"Now polishing with smooth river stones passed down for generations." Uploaded By: Gary

"Sanding our Hopi Pottery." Uploaded By: Gary

"Finished with the molding process and now go explore Capitol Reef National Park while it dries!" Uploaded By: Gary

"Alice, our Hopi Potter helps participant in the molding process." Uploaded By: Gary

"The Hopi Pottery group with our expert Hopi Instructors, Alice and Caroline." Uploaded By: Gary

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Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

at no additional cost on this date ...
6 nights of accommodations
18 meals: 6 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 6 dinners
11 Expert-led lectures
6 Field trips
12 Hands-on experiences


Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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