Abenaki Heritage Weekend
June 25-26, 2016
This special weekend hosted by Lake Champlain Maritime Museum gives visitors an Abenaki perspective on life in the Champlain Valley. Members of the Elnu Abenaki Tribe, the Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk and Koasek Traditional Band of the Koas Abenaki Nation, and the Vermont Abenaki Artists Association work with Museum staff to plan and present the event.
The Native people at this event are experts in the living indigenous arts and traditions which they come together to share with one another and with visitors. They have inherited, researched, reconstructed, or apprenticed to learn the techniques with which they create outstanding beadwork, quillwork, basketry, pottery, woodworking and other items for personal use or for sale. Tribal members will also share songs, drumming, dancing, games, food preparation, and other life skills.
Abenaki Heritage Weekend also includes opportunities to share cultural heritage through illustrated talks and Round Table discussions on topics such as efforts to preserve Abenaki as a living language, and the cultivation, use and exchange of heirloom plants. “I have been amazed by the richness and depth of the cultural and historical information brought out by the Vermont Indigenous bands during their research for Vermont State Recognition,” says Frederick M. Wiseman, Ph. D., Director of the Wobanakik Heritage Center in Swanton. “This is a new stage with great potential in Vermont culture and history – for Native people to work on their own history and culture and then present the results.”
The 2016 Abenaki Heritage Weekend includes:
Saturday, June 25, 11am: Dr. Frederick M. Wiseman’s findings from Seeds of Renewal, his multi-year quest to discover ancient local crops from written documents and modern Indigenous oral history. He has tracked down seed sources as far away as Manitoba and Colorado, and brought the precious seeds to renewed harvests in their ancient homeland. His presentation includes an illustrated talk and a visit to demonstration plantings on the Museum grounds. Learn more about Dr. Wiseman’s Seeds of Renewal project in a Teacher Training Workshop at LCMM August 1-5, 2016 and a Special Exhibit at LCMM in 2017.
Saturday, June 25, 4pm: Alnobak, Wearing Our Heritage, a fashion show of historic clothing from Vermont Abenaki families and garments and regalia recently made by Vermont’s Abenaki people to reflect and celebrate their traditions. A selection of these pieces will be exhibited at LCMM from July through October 2016 and will travel to the Amy Tarrant Gallery at the Flynn Theater in 2017.