Pocumtuck Homelands Festival

Mass Appeal

Western Massachusetts has such a rich history of Native American culture. The 5th annual Pocumtuck Homelands Festival will celebrate the art, culture and music of Native Americans.

It takes place on Saturday, August 4, 2018, from 10am to 7pm at the Unity Park waterfront in Turners Falls, MA. The event is free, family friendly, fun, educational, accessible, and of interest to all ages.

Outstanding indigenous artists and craftspeople will display and sell beautiful and unique works including jewelry, pipes, baskets, drums. Traditional and original music throughout the day includes performances by flute player Kelvin Mockingbird (Navaho/Dine), guitarist Bryan Blanchette (Elnu Abenaki), The Kingfisher Singers (Wampanoag), Black Hawk Singers (Abenaki), Urban Thunder Singers (Intertribal) and storytelling by Willow Greene (Missisquoi Abenaki). Justin “Bigishkibin” Beatty will emcee.

Primitive skills demonstrations, like flint knapping, birch bark biting, ash log pounding, will be on site. Elnu Abenaki Chief Roger Longtoe Sheehan and tribal experts present an all-day “Living 17th Century Native History” displaying replicas of weaponry used during that period, skills like net making and wampum making, and display clothing worn by the different cultures visiting the Great Falls in the mid-1600s.

The festival will offer two condensed history sessions. Evan Pritchard, Director of the Center of Algonquin Studies, will present “Norumbega: A French Twist” about 19th-century French historian John Fiske. David Brule, Nolumbeka Project president and coordinator of the National Parks Service Battleground Research at Wissatinnewag-Peskeompskut, will speak about “Archaeology and Healing at the Falls”. Other guests include ceremonial stone expert Tim Mac Sweeney, founder of the “Waking Up on Turtle Island” website, and Lester Garvin who uses aerial photography to identify probable ancient Native village sites in New England. Delicious food, including Native American food, rounds out this remarkable day on the Connecticut River!

The Pocumtuck Homelands Festival is rain or shine. All entertainment and food is sheltered.

For a full schedule of events visit www.nolumbekaproject.org or call 413-423-3826

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