California State Park’s Antelope Valley Indian Museum State Historic Park (SHP) will host the American Indian Celebration event from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Oct. 15 and 16. The location is 15701 East Avenue M in Lancaster. Gates will open at 10:45 each day. Tickets are $8 (cash only). Children under 12 years are admitted free. Parking is free.
The celebration will include a dance arena featuring various Native-Indian dancers, traditional Chumash stories and arts and craft displays.
The celebration kicks off at 11 a.m. Saturday, with a blessing by Chumash/Tataviam elders Ted and Dennis Garcia. The dance arena will feature Buffalo Creek, a Northern Style drum group from the Los Angeles and Temecula area led by Brendon Youngbear Urdanivia (Navajo/Tewa).
Throughout the day, the dance area activities will rotate between native dancers with music by Buffalo Creek, hoop dancing by Sage Romero (Piute/Taos Pueblo), Yaqui deer dancers, and Aztec culture and dancing with Danza Azteca Xochipilli.
Ted and Dennis Garcia (Chumash/Tataviam) will share traditional Chumash stories in the native plant garden outside Joshua Cottage. Hands-on activities include working with clay and pounding acorns and pine nuts at the touch table exhibit in Joshua Cottage. Visitors can also tour the museum, staffed with docents. Flint knapper Mike Thompson will demonstrate how to make arrowheads.
The two-day event will feature Native artists selling jewelry, beadwork, gourd art, paintings and crafts. Artists at the event include Cydnee Ashmore (Diné), Cecelia Begay (Navajo), Elta Benally-Frank (Diné), Hawk Creations (Yokuts), Danza Axteca Xochipilli (Aztec), Judy Einboden (Panamanian), Rowan Harrison (Navajo/Pueblo of Isleta), Keith Long Feather (Cherokee), Maria Martinez and Sacred Creations (Yaqui), Connie Marie (Yaqui), Sage Romero (Piute/Taos Pueblo), Ana Tachyn-Crisol (Cherokee), Margo Torres (Apache), Nayeli Vazquez (Aztec), and Michael Chas Williams (Wichita). Visitors can also purchase Cecelia Begay’s Indian tacos and fry bread.
Antelope Valley Indian Museum SHP contains the combined collections of Howard Arden Edwards and Grace Oliver. The museum exhibits over 3,000 rare objects from the Antelope Valley, California coast, Great Basin, and the Southwest. The Antelope Valley was an important four-way trade route at least 4,000 years ago. The trade route enriched the material and social resources to Antelope Valley residents, allowing large villages to develop near the valley’s springs.
The event is a fundraiser for the Friends of the Antelope Valley Indian Museum. Pets are not allowed at the event.
For more information, contact the museum at (661) 946-3055 (711 TTY relay service), or visit the website at www.avim.parks.ca.gov.