RSU To Offer Native American Heritage Week Festival Nov. 23

Traditional storytelling, language lessons, free arts and craft workshops for children and adults, a stomp dance and native food will highlight the 2002 Native American Heritage Week Festival on Saturday, Nov. 23, at Rogers State University.

The festival, which is free and open to the public, will be held from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. in the Health Sciences Building on the RSU campus in Claremore.

The festival is sponsored by the RSU Native American Student Association and the RSU Department of Communication and Fine Arts

“The festival will feature a wide variety of educational and entertaining events for the whole family,” said Hugh Foley, RSU assistant professor and organizer of the festival.

The festival was funded by a grant from the Oklahoma Arts Council. Through state appropriations and grants from the National Endowment for Arts, the Oklahoma Arts Council funds more than 1,200 events annually with an estimated total attendance of more than 3.5 million. Projects funded by the Oklahoma Arts Council generally account for over $20 million in grants and matching funds distributed throughout Oklahoma’s economy throughout the state’s rural and urban communities.

Free Native American arts and crafts classes will be offered for adults and children from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Participants can learn how to make Cherokee baskets, grapevine dream catchers, and river cane blowguns and flutes in a “make it and take it” format.

At 11 a.m., Mary Kay Henderson will present a Cherokee hymn workshop.

At 12 noon, Jack Anquoe, Jr., who is of Kiowa descent, will present powwow music.

At 1 p.m., Dennis Peterson, Spiro Mounds park site manager, will present the origins and history of the Spiro Mounds in Oklahoma.

At 2 p.m., Patricia Mousetrail, who is of Cheyenne descent, will demonstrate beading and the making of cradleboards.

At 3 p.m., Charles Chibitty will discuss Comanche code talking from World War II.

At 4 p.m., Sam Proctor will discuss Muscogee “Creek” ceremonies from the past, present and future.

At 5 p.m. the RSU Native American Student Association will sell Indian tacos.

At 6 p.m. a buffalo dance demonstration will be held.

Finally, a traditional Native American stomp dance will be held from 7-10 p.m. in the Health Sciences Building. The stomp dance will be hosted by the Tallahassee (Wvkokye) tribe.

For more information on the RSU Native American Heritage Week Festival, call (918) 343-7566 or email [email protected].