Participant Information

Ox Bow

Nestled on an old oxbow cut off from the Kalamazoo River near the edge of Lake Michigan, Ox Bow has been a place of retreat for artists for over a hundred years. It is also the birthplace of PBI. The studios are large and comfortable, providing the space and facilities needed for PBI classes.

PBI at Ox-Bow

009_PBI_PicksDaily life at PBI is a pleasant mix of intensive class time, group meals and independent work time in the studio. Guest lecturers, visiting artists and other events are scheduled some evenings during the session for entertainment and enrichment. Swimming and canoeing provide a break from studio work. Lake Michigan, with its’ beautiful beaches, can be reached by canoe or a short walk. There are a number of hiking trails through the woods on the Ox-Bow property and, for those wanting a workout, you can head down the road to the 100 steps, a staircase which takes you to the top of a dune overlooking Lake Michigan. A large fire-pit on the shore of the oxbow is a festive gathering place in the evenings. When the weather is inclement, people often get together on the large screened in porches in the Old Inn, the Dining Hall in the New Inn, or one of the fireplaces found throughout Ox-Bow.

Room and board

IMG_9160Housing is in rustic cabins and dorms. Most rooms are double occupancy but there are a few single occupancy rooms, which can be reserved for an additional fee. All bathroom facilities are shared. Participants supply their own towels and bedding. In May, weather in Michigan can be extremely variable so participants must be prepared for a range of temperatures. Meals are provided by the Ox-Bow kitchen, and are served family style, with a focus on healthy, delicious, sustainable choices. The kitchen works to accommodate most food restrictions.


IMG_9228PBI consists of two 4-day sessions. During the first session, participants take two classes – one meeting in the morning and the other in the afternoon. There is a day off, and the second session begins, consisting of one class that meets for the whole day.

Travel Information

For those traveling by air, the Grand Rapids Airport is the nearest major airport and most rental car companies have locations at the airport.

Grand Rapids and Holland each also have rail and bus service. For information on rail service, call Amtrak at 800.USA.RAIL or visit for schedules and fares. The bus service provider depends on the departure location. Contact Greyhound, Megabus, or other bus services to determine availability.

For those who drive to PBI, Ox-Bow is located in Saugatuck, Michigan. There is ample parking for PBI participants on the Ox-Bow campus.

from transportation hubs to Ox Bow
Coleman Shuttle Service provides transportation to and from the Grand Rapids Airport, the Amtrak Station or Bus Station in Grand Rapids, and the Train/Bus Station in Holland.

PBI participants must make their own shuttle arrangements directly with Coleman Shuttle Service. Call to make reservation: 616–355-2006. They accept a credit card at the time the reservation is made, or cash at the time of pick-up.

The one-way charge to or from the Grand Rapids Airport, Amtrak Station, or Bus Station and Ox-Bow ranges from $40 to $75 (plus tip)* and depends on the arrival time as well as willingness be grouped with 4 or more travelers.Travelers who would like to try to be grouped by Coleman Shuttle should plan to arrive/depart between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m.

The one-way charge to or from the Holland Train/Bus Station and Ox-Bow is $40 (plus tip)*.

*All charges are subject to change by Coleman Shuttle Services. Please confirm your costs at the time you reserve a ride.