RARH – Making Loops in SE Minnesota


Rochester Area Rug Hookers, centrally located in Rochester Minnesota,in South East MN and Western WI .

Our  Mission:


Hooked by Kathy Morton – Oak Ridge Cottage Rugs Rochester

  • Develop interest in rug hooking
  • Provide means for the exchange of ideas and information among members
  • Promote educational activities for members.  We are a small, all-volunteer organization that seeks to provide opportunities for rug hookers to gather, learn, and be inspired in the craft of rug hooking. We welcome visitors, inquiries, and new members.  Check out the EVENTS tab above for some hooking opportunities in the Rochester area.

We are Chapter 122 of the Association of Traditional Hooking Artists, ATHA.  To become a RARH member, membership to the Association of Traditional Hooking Artists (ATHA) is also required. You can join ATHA  online.  This national group provides information, advice, insurance, etc. for our local organization.

Here are some ways that RARH remains “in the loop” with our mission:

  • RARH members enjoy first priority and discounts for classes and retreats.
  • In the Spring, we hold an annual 3-day retreat.
  • In the Fall, we hold a 3-day workshop (Wednesday through Friday) taught by a nationally known instructor.
  • The workshop is followed by a Saturday of Hooking and a special program by the teacher for all to attend. This provides the opportunity for more hookers to learn from and shop the teacher’s woolen goods.

2019 Retreat is almost here! We will have three days of hooking fun in March! You can attend any or all of the days. (Sorry, but there is no formal teaching during the retreat unless we have a mini class scheduled)

2019 Spring Retreat

Everyone loves a homemade gift, right!?  For our Spring 2019 Retreat, we are giving a “Wooly” gift with early registrations! Grab your form at this link: Spring Registration Form  

wool bags copyYou won’t want to miss out on this! These handy wool magnetic bags attach to your hooking surface to hold your scissors, hook and snippets. 

Registration must be received by February 14th to get this great gift!

 Pssst ~ Come early to get your best choice of colors!

  • Vendors: There are FOUR amazing rug hooking and fiber businesses in our membership! You can shop for wool, patterns, tools, hand-spun yarn, kits and other hooking-related goodies. See our here on this site.
  • Door Prizes: Provided by our vendors and members, drawings daily.
  • Daily Lunch and beverages with pre-registration
  • Rug Show – a gallery of rugs that our attendees place on display for us to ooooh and awwww over.  The talent of our group members is amazing!
  • Clean Out Your Closet Table: attendees can bring up to 10 hooking-related items to sell (i.e. frames, cutters, patterns, tools, wool, books). Tags will be available for pricing and seller identification. When you leave, please collect any of your unsold items. Note: This table is the only place that RARH allows sales by anyone other than a registered Vendor or Fall Workshop teacher.
  • Assisi Overnight Accommodations: Assisi has private rooms, in the Sisters’ residence, that are simple and restful. Many of our attendees stay late to hook, and enjoy the convenience of the lodging upstairs with breakfast and dinner in the Sisters’ Dining Room. All are available for an additional fee.
  • Assisi Tour: Offered by the Sisters of Assisi Heights. Our attendees enjoy this perk and give great feedback.
  • Assisi Gift Shop: The Sisters sell handmade note cards, jams and honey, along with other fun novelty items. Located on the first floor.
  • Registration opens for Fall Workshop: RARH members only can sign up at the time of this Spring Retreat. Non-members can join RARH at this time; ATHA membership required, available on their website. Registration of Fall Workshop opens May 1 for non-members.

New Feature at Spring Retreat 2019 – Special GUEST VENDOR:


Pat Weaver

Pat will be selling beautiful handmade hooks, her needle felting supplies and kits, as well as her beautiful finished felted works of art.

In addition to vending, Pat is going to teach a mini class in Needle felting.   This will take place on Friday, March 15th at 10am.  Pat will be offering this class for  materials cost only – $5 for per kit.

Pat is one of our long time members.  She has generously offered to teach a free class in needle felting at this event.  Students will work on a wonderful reindeer with stick legs and/or a cute lamb.  Students may do either or both projects.  No need to sign up ahead of time.

Fall 2019 Workshopvicki.jpg

  • Three-day workshop with a nationally-known teacher
  • The number of students is limited by the teacher
  • Registration opens for RARH members at the Spring Retreat
    (opens for non-members on May 1)
  • Some past teachers include: Janice Johnson, Anita White, Cathy Stephan, Sharon Smith, Tricia Travis and Nola Heidbreder
  • 2019 teacher will be Vicki Hardcastle from Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Her website will be available in March. Here are a few of her art pieces that show her fun techniques.
  • The workshop is followed by a Saturday Hooking Day and a special program by the teacher for all to attend. This provides the opportunity for more to learn from and shop the teacher’s woolen goods. Note: Our Workshop teacher is the only one allowed to sell at the 3-day Workshop and the Saturday Hooking Day.
  • Assisi has overnight accommodations in private rooms, that are simple and restful. Other hotels are close-by for those that desire a bit more pampered evenings.  Many of our attendees stay late and hook, and enjoy the convenience of the dining area and lodging upstairs.


Check out the EVENTS page for a link for Registration Forms.