D.I.Y. Dreams become Reality



off-grid WKSHP

Do you you dream of building your own TINY HOUSE, micro-shelter or off-grid cabin, but lack the skill set or property for install?

Are you interested in architecture and salvaged building materials to design something unique in nature that is off-grid? Maybe you just want to dabble in architecture and design rather than going all in on a college career, or maybe you are in that track but want to flex your muscles creatively?

Are you obsessed with tree house masters, or d.i.y. home renovation shows but want to try a real experience?

Are you looking for a rewarding experience where you learn, immerse in nature, and create something that brings joy and positive vibes for a good cause?


You will join a maximum group of 8 people of various backgrounds to design and build a Tiny House / Micro Shelter on the riverside property of Camp Wonder Wander. This house/cabin/studio will be an off-grid space for the artist residency program and be integral to a growing collection of art installations within nature. 

As one of the designer/builders, you will have membership access to visit in the future!

be a part of something BIG

while building something SMALL




MARCH 5-14, 2021


  • LODGING - 9 nights in our cozy, comfy lodge in prime spring season in the rural rolling hills of mid-south Tennessee.
  • MEALS - all meals are included providing you with healthy, seasonal, and comfort food after a good day's work prepared on site by the camp director, Val, with a menu that is amenable for all dietary needs and will exclude junk food.
  • TOOL INSTRUCTION - you will have tools in your hands and be supervised by the workshop leader, a carpenter with his own off-grid self-built house nearby, and camp director. This is a hands-on experience and therefore limited to 8 participants for a rewarding experience where everyone is productive.
  • DESIGN IDEATION AND SALVAGE HUNTING - on day 1, we'll search for possible salvage materials in the nearby thrift, salvage, and even antique or auction style shops to integrate into the final design. All ideas will be heard and the group will narrow down the final design with oversight from the workshop leader into what is actually possible and a final thumbs up from camp director Val.
  • BUILDING EXPERIENCE - hands-on workshop where all participants have an active role. This structure will be permanent, not mobile on wheels. A foundation of 10x20 which includes approximately 4 feet for a porch will be created in a special spot on the riverside property of the camp prior to your arrival. Materials will be ready for us to dive in and build once we decide on the final design. You'll get updates if you register early!
  • INTERACTION WITH THE CAMP ANIMALS – You'll be able to meet and interact during free time with the camp animals from the free range chickens, to the camp cats and 2 dogs, to the donkeys (standards and minis), including possible foals varying in ages.
  • EVENING CAMPFIRES and quiet time. Join the group around a fire and tell stories, or retreat to your own corner for your quiet evening. Wifi is available on the property, but access may be limited during certain times of the event. This should be considered a digital detox and an adult camp experience.
    *Your cell phone may not work very well, but we have a phone if you need it.
  • EXTRACURRICULAR – Before the workshop ends, we'll have at least one chance to be inspired by a film either by an artist or maybe even architecture. If you haven't seen "Rivers and Tides"  – a documentary of Andy Goldsworthy – that will be on the top of the list. We'll schedule a quick visit to the workshop leader's property approximately 5 miles drive into the wooded hills of a former logging zone. You'll be able to see his various construction projects and ask detail questions about living off-grid. We may even have a few rounds of pool or corn hole.
  • FUTURE VISITS. You will have membership access to the building at a discounted rate of $25/night up to 7 consecutive nights for 7 years based on schedule availability upon booking which is approximately $2400 value discount.
  • INSPIRATION & IDEATION. Review some of the contemporary resources such as "Micro-shelters: 59 creative cabins, tiny houses, tree houses and other small structures" by Derek "Deek" Diedricksen among others. Sketch your own ideas and get feedback from other participants in the aesthetics and build potential. Stock up on any salvage materials that you find on the shopping excursion to take home for your own tiny home plans.
  • TRANSPORTATION - to and from our camp near Hohenwald, TN and the Natchez Trace Parkway in the rural rolling foothills of Appalachia where you will see a farm community as we are 20 minutes to the closest towns in either direction. For a minimal additional fee, airport pick up and drop off is available upon request and coordination.
  • PERSONAL ITEMS - The lodging includes all bedding and a towel per guest, but you may want to bring your own personal favorite items like a pillow, a beach towel, slippers for inside the house. There are many blankets to make this extra cozy space, but if you have a favorite bring it along.
  • LODGE - has dining and living space, large kitchen, 2 bathrooms, and 2 wood burning stoves. Sleeps up to 14 people so you will be comfortable with a maximum of 8. There are several seating areas from a big chairs to sofas and love seats. There are two porches, one that overlooks the donkey paddock. Lots of creative inspiration, a design book library sprinkled with art, architecture, and cultural titles. 
    - clothing for the time period that can get dirty and/or wet
    - closed toed shoes for safety, slippers or comfortable socks for indoors as no shoes allowed, shoes that can get wet or muddy in the environment or if you want to go to the river
    - safety items such as work gloves, eye protection, hat, long sleeves/long pants as we will be working in a natural environment
    - insect repellent
    - water bottle
    - note book and pencil
  • DO I NEED EXPERIENCE? - Simply, No. But you must be willing to get your hands dirty and listen to all of the instructions, directions, safety protocols.
    - Most definitely, Yes! The goal is to create over time approximately 10-12 unique, off-grid, tiny house, micro shelters on the 12-acre plat along the Buffalo river for the primary use of the residency program, and secondary use by workshop participant members and the general public. If you have friends and want to schedule your own group experience, we definitely will welcome a second event in a year.

Maximum of 8 participants



$300 discount for a paired participation
(2 for $2,698)

early bird 2021: $1199
if paid in full by DECEMBER 31, 2020

*please inquire if you have more than 2 in your party for special pricing
or would like to coordinate a private experience for your group of 4-10 people
to contribute to our artist residency house project.

maximum 8 participants, waitlist optional
Select an option

Excited to work with you! Will be in touch soon.

there is a landline phone for emergencies.

this camp is easily accessible on a well maintained state highway not off the road for miles on gravel.

Val is certified first aid.

BE Magical


Not only are you going to walk away from this workshop with practical skills, great ideas and plans for your own Tiny House build, and possibly some great memories and new friendships, but you will be contributing to a bigger cause. This magical path to the Camp Wonder Wander riverside property leads all visitors to a creative journey with the first option being our Yurt. The tiny house / micro shelter you build will be a magical addition to the Camp and the Residency program.