After Marilyn See retired, she moved to the country near Peculiar and planted a few gourd seeds. Soon after, she discovered another avenue for the artistic talents she had always enjoyed when she began using the gourds to create Native American spirit dolls.

Since then, See has won many awards, including Missouri Gourd Artist of the Year, for her gourd art thanks to her membership in gourd societies around the country, including The Show-Me Gourd Society, which will have its 17th Annual Gourd Art Festival April 11-12 at Remington’s Event Center in Springfield.

Spirit dolls are just one of thousands of artistic pieces made from gourds that will be on display in over 90 classes. Educational displays, vendors and awards are also part of the fun.

The festival is from 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. April 11 and 10 a.m.-3 p.m. April 12. Admission is $5 for a weekend pass and children under 12 are free.

The Show-Me Gourd society is a non-profit organization that was established in 1997. The group is the XI Chapter of the American Gourd Society, which oversees more than 25 state chapters in the nation. The group’s purpose is to support the arts by promoting the gourd art medium. This is done by encouraging youth and adults to learn about gourd art through festival workshops, competition, etc. The organization is made up of people who love to share their talents with gourds.

Learn more about the organization and gourd art at or on Facebook at or call 417-839-9241.