It is that time of year again! Shepherd’s Cross is taking registrations for their annual Shearing School. The classes are held on an authentic working sheep farm at Shepherd’s Cross. This is one of only a few American Sheep Industry (ASI) Certified classes taught in the whole nation. It is instructed by Israel Vasek and Dr. Diane Dickinson. This year’s school will be held April 15 – 17 from 8:30a – 3:30p daily.
Mr. Vasek is a professional sheep shearer, and shears over 10,000 sheep per year. He learned to shear with his father, and is carrying on the family tradition. Vasek is not only a quality shearer, but he is conscientious, and handles the sheep respectfully. He and his family live in South Dakota. It is an honor to have him come to Oklahoma to teach this class.
Dr. Diane Dickinson is a licensed veterinarian and an agriculturalist, with over 30 years of livestock and farming experience. Her unique perspective of animal husbandry care includes that of a producer, a veterinarian for small flocks and herds, global agriculture, Biblical agriculture, sustainable living, natural production, agri-tourism, and niche markets.
Each participant will learn, and then have an opportunity to effectively shear sheep. Proper handling and animal welfare will be taught, as well as proper handling and maintaining shearing equipment. Shepherd’s Cross is an animal welfare approved facility, holding to specific standards of humane animal treatment.
Upon request, a portion of the class can be taught virtually. (Probably not the actual shearing part.)
Sheep and shears are provided for your use during training. You are welcome to bring any shearing tools you have for consultation and use if desired. Upon completion of class, each student will have earned a certificate of accomplishment from Shepherd’s Cross and from the American Sheep Industry. They will also be given an official American Sheep Industry Shearing tutorial handbook, a DVD, and an educational gift bag.
You may find a registration form HERE. The class fee is $245.00 (the form and a deposit of $75.00 is due by April 5th). Please be prepared to sign a waiver & heed Shepherd’s Cross Rules, which can be found HERE. Students are asked to bring a sack lunch. Beverages will be provided.
Shepherd’s Cross and Heart of the Shepherd (the nonprofit 501-C3) host many classes including animal husbandry, wool processing, and veterinary care all around the world. Their fiber classes go a step further than most classes; they teach some history of fiber arts, and practical technology. Workshops are augmented by hands-on learning tools available in the Educational Farm Museum. These fiber classes are offered on an individual or group basis throughout the year. Advanced classes are also available upon request.
Since Shepherd’s Cross is an animal welfare-approved sheep farm, their fiber is chemical free, hormone free, free range, all natural. They host a mini wool mill on site where they process wool from several hundred of their own sheep. They also offer tours, guided or self-guided, of the Bible Garden. Be sure to visit Shepherd’s Shop, their quaint country gift shop, featuring a host of handmade and farm related gifts and wares from many gifted artisans. The gift shop is open every week, Tuesday through Saturday, from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm.