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Downtown Eureka Springs photo by Leigh Short


The mission of The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow (WCDH) is to provide uninterrupted residency time for writers of all genres, including culinary, composers, and artists without discrimination. The WCDH will foster an environment that allows writers to work, interact with the wider community, stimulate new thinking, and energize creative expression.

"There is something magical and magnetic about this place... it seems to draw pen to paper even, and especially, when the writer least expects it."

– Sarah Gray-Panesi

"The Writers' Colony at Dairy Hollow is an incubator for creative thought. Writers can come here to find their stories. Not only the stories they come here knowing they want to tell, but the stories beneath that. The stories that have an even greater need to be told.”

–  Crescent Dragonwagon

The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow is located in the historic arts village of Eureka Springs, Arkansas, in the Northwest corner of the Ozark Mountains. Our town is tiny – population 2,079 – but we are host to thousands of tourists who come for a slice of our unusual lifestyle. We are distinctly different from anywhere else in the world.

We may be unknown by many, but Eureka Springs is no stranger to writers. Our town is the center of the universe, a fact empirically proven, and since her naming on July 4, 1879, our town has drawn writers with something to say. All too often it's prefaced by "Eureka!"

Our history is spiced with the likes of John Phillip Sousa, Cora Pinkley-Call, Otto Rayburn, Frank Stanford, and Crescent Dragonwagon. In modern times, Eureka Springs has welcomed Charlaine Harris of the Southern Vampire Mystery series and Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of The Deep End of the Ocean, which was the first selection for Oprah's Book Club in 1996. Of course, we haven’t even begun to brag. (Remember - buy from your local bookstore. If they don't have it, they can order it for you. Shop local.)

The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow started out as the second Bed & Breakfast to open its doors in Arkansas, a project of love by cookbook author Crescent Dragonwagon and late husband, Ned Shank, a preservationist and writer himself. During its 18 years in business, the Inn was named an "Inn of the Year" by both Conde Nast Traveler and USA Today,  and later, Dairy Hollow House Restaurant was covered in Gourmet, Bon Appetit, Self, the Wall Street Journal, and countless regional publications.

Converted to a place dedicated to writers of all genres, artists, and composers in 1998, The Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow opened for its first writers in 2000. The colony now offers eight private writing suites in two side-by-side houses, with residencies lasting from one week up to three months.

Each suite has its own personality and view of historic Dairy Hollow, with private bath, writing nook, and private entrance. All suites are equipped with mini-fridges and coffee makers. The culinary suite is fully equipped for cookbook writers and chefs. European-style gourmet meals are provided nightly Monday through Friday, and the kitchen is equipped with all the basics so writers can prepare their own breakfasts and lunches.

Eureka Springs is served by the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport (XNA) in nearby Bentonville, Arkansas, home to Walmart headquarters, the largest retailer in the world, and Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, open to the public at no charge daily (closed Tuesday). Airport transportation services are available on request.

Learn more about the history of The Writers Colony at the CALS Encyclopedia of Arkansas here.

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