May is Arkansas Heritage Month and this year’s theme is “Come to the Table: Celebrating the Flavors of Arkansas”.

During May the Ozark Folk Center State Park will highlight Ozark foods and food customs starting with the Heritage Herb Garden Extravaganza, on May 3. Join us starting at 10 a.m. to hear some old-time folk music, enjoy a plant sale and savor spring flavors during the Committee of 100’s Country Tea at 3:00 p.m. Regular Craft Village admission fees apply.

In keeping with our mission to preserve the crafts, music and lore of the Ozarks, the Ozark Folk Center State Park is holding a series of Wednesday Cooking Classes starting May 7 with Heritage Foods Cooking Class – Hoe Cakes to Stir Fry. Learn how to cook good foods in a cast iron skillet over a fire, starting with old fashioned hoe cakes; make apple or veggie cakes; create a hearty and healthy herbed veggie stir fry and end with a dessert of “dirty worms.”

Then on May 8 the Skillet Restaurant at the Ozark Folk Center State Park will be serving the Settler’s Dinner Special. Dinner was the largest meal in an Ozark settler’s day and it was usually eaten in the middle of the day. Join us at the Skillet Restaurant for our version of the Settler’s Dinner, which includes Chicken and Dumplings, ham and beans, turnips greens, fried okra, fried potatoes, salad bar, corn bread, rolls, cobbler.

Our Wednesday, May 14 cooking class is titled “Not Your Grandma’s Sauerkraut.” This fermented foods class will teach you new methods of making pickled and fermented vegetables, as well as some other natural ways to store healthy food without refrigeration.

May 21 we’ll be making cheese in our “Easy Cheesy Cheesemaking Class.” Learn a simple way to make simple cheeses for dips, salads and cooking. We’ll also explore easy fermented milks including kefir and yogurt. And our final Heritage Month cooking class is on Wednesday, May 28. This class is “Go Green – Creative Salads from Your Garden”.

These cooking classes start at 10 a.m. in the Administration Building at the Ozark Folk Center State Park. Each class is $30 per person and that includes that day’s admission to the Craft Village, a copy of the recipes used in the class and tastes of what you’ve cooked. The classes end by 2:00 p.m. Preregistration is encouraged. You can sign up by calling 870-269-3851.

The regular admission fee for the Craft Village, or to attend concerts at the Folk Center Auditorium is $12 for adults and $7 for children 6 through 12. Season passes, three-day and combination tickets are available for purchase, as well as family passes. In addition to the Craft Village and Music Theater, the Ozark Folk Center State Park offers a full service restaurant, open through Nov. 29, 2014, from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. daily, and comfortable, secluded lodging in the Cabins at Dry Creek, which are open year around. The Park has convention and banquet facilities available. For more information on any of these services, contact the Ozark Folk Center State Park at 870-269-3851 or visit the website at