Culinary & Craft School Craftsmen

Master Craftsman of Culinary Arts Debbie Dance Uhrig

Debbie Dance Uhrig, a craftsman at Silver Dollar City.

Debbie Dance Uhrig, Master Craftsman

Silver Dollar City has held a special place in Debbie Dance Uhrig’s heart since her first visit with her grandparents in 1961. In 2008, Debbie joined the park family, becoming Master Craftsman of Culinary Arts at the park’s Culinary & Craft School.

Debbie’s passion for cooking began with her family. Her grandparents owned a farm that produced everything from chickens to black-eyed peas. When Debbie first left home, it became apparent just how much she depended upon the farm — she had to call home to find out where to buy meat. She realized her unique experiences with food would be an important part of her future.

After earning a Master’s Degree in education, Debbie began teaching music in elementary school. Throughout her 25 years as a teacher, she continued with her love for cooking, writing a column called “The Covered Dish,” authoring a cookbook and teaching private cooking classes to adults and children.

In 2008 when Silver Dollar City launched the new Culinary & Craft School, Debbie jumped at the opportunity to teach culinary skills to guests in an intimate setting. Her back-ground in cooking, education, music and entertainment made her a perfect fit for the newly created role of Master Craftsman of Culinary Arts.   

“I was brought up cooking family-style meals and entertaining, so this experience has been a dream come true,” she says. Guests seem to feel the same way as they head for seats at the front, excited to learn what Debbie has in store.

Each day at the park, Debbie is reminded of that first visit to Silver Dollar City with her grandparents, the only vacation they ever took. She passes on the love for great food she learned from them, inspiring park guests as a true culinary craftsman.

Alison Smith, a craftsman at Silver Dollar City

Alison Smith, Senior Craftsman

Alison Smith believes anyone can learn to cook, and while at it, make it an art. As a theatrical teacher and performer, cooking was always a side passion. She coordinated a monthly supper club, visited food festivals and cooked for hundreds at her church. “Cooking is the best way to gather family and friends, because it is both hospitality and entertainment,” she says. She likes to take a different twist on recipes, creating unique flavor combinations.