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VOL. 13, ISSUE 1  MARCH–MAY 2010


Full Spring

Ahead! Through the Eyes of the Eagle: Illustrating Healthy Living for Children, our latest exhibit in the Mashantucket Gallery features sixty-five vibrant original watercolor paintings from a series of diabetes prevention stories for Native American children. Be inspired to eat better and exercise more after viewing the artwork!

April Vacation Fun Live Reptiles and Raptors! Build a model wetu: see Page 5.

ECHO 2010 Performing Arts Festival ECHO visits the Museum on March 13: see Page 4.

Special Exhibits

Feb. 20–May 29, 10 am–4 pm Sixty-five vibrant original watercolor paintings from a series of diabetes prevention stories for Native American children are featured in our latest exhibit in the Mashantucket Gallery. For thousands of years, Native peoples have told stories to pass on their history, knowledge, and culture to future generations. In the four Eagle Books, a wise eagle teaches traditional ways of healthy living that children can remember and retell in their homes, schools, and communities. Illustrated by Patrick Rolo (Bad River Band, Ojibwe) and Lisa A. Fifield (Oneida Tribe of


Wisconsin), the books were written by Georgia Perez and developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in collaboration with the Tribal Leaders Diabetes Committee and the Indian Health Service. The vivid and lively paintings feature wise animals teaching Native children about physical activity, healthy eating, and diabetes prevention. Although the Eagle Books target American Indian and Alaska Native children, ages 4–9, the stories are universal and have a wide appeal.

Through the Eyes of the Eagle: Illustrating Healthy Living for Children is organized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Division of Diabetes Translation, Native Diabetes Wellness Program, and the Global Health Odyssey Museum.

Special Exhibits Special Saturdays

Healthy Living Discovery Programs for Children We are excited to offer monthly fun and informative programs in conjunction with the books and artwork from Through the Eyes of the Eagle: Illustrating Healthy Living for Children. The following programs are offered twice in March, April, and May. Spend 1, 2, or 3 Saturdays with us! Saturdays, Mar. 6 and Mar. 20, 11 am–1 pm

Do you love to eat snacks and treats? Beware the Trickster and his bag filled with bad habits. He tries to fool you into eating stuff that’s not good for you! Come to our Tricky Treats Discovery program filled with fun activities, storytelling, and games that help you to fool the Trickster. We start in the Children’s Library with the book Tricky Treats, explore the vivid and lively paintings from the book in the Mashantucket Gallery exhibit, and discover the difference between everyday snacks and sometimes treats. Bring your lunch, dress for fun, and enjoy some tasty, colorful, and healthy snacks. Limited to 15 children, ages 6–10. Call (800) 4119671 by Mar. 5 or Mar. 19 to register. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members.

Saturdays, Apr. 3 and Apr. 17, 11 am–1 pm

No watching cartoons on a Saturday morning! Join us for the second special discovery program. This month we discover that bright colored fruits and vegetables are full of vitamins and minerals that our bodies need. The program begins with a visit to the Children’s Library to hear the story Plate Full of Color, followed by a Farmstead tour with Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Member Gary Carter. Gary identifies some of the food plants his ancestors enjoyed and everyone gets to try mint, sassafras, or pine needle tea! Bring your lunch, be prepared to have fun, and enjoy some tasty, colorful healthy snacks. Take home some new recipe ideas. Limited to 15 children, ages 6–10. Call (800) 411-9671 by Apr. 2 or Apr. 16 to register. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members.

Saturdays, May 1 and May 15, 11 am–1 pm

Knees Lifted High is the last of our special discovery programs designed for healthy living in conjunction with the Museum gallery exhibit: Through the Eyes of the Eagle. After visiting the Children’s Library to hear Knees Lifted High, everyone zips out to the terrace to special Circuit Training Stations. Designed to exercise our bodies, arms, legs, and feet, the stations include jumping jacks, duck walks, and knee lifts. Play ring and toss, a traditional Native game. Bring your lunch, be prepared to have fun, and enjoy some tasty, healthy snacks, our treat! Limited to 15 children, ages 6–10. Call (800) 411-9671 by Apr. 30 or May 14 to register. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members. NATIVE VISIONS  /  SPRING 2010


Special Celebration Saturday, Mar. 13, 1–2:30 pm

Celebrate—Song, Dance & Story! Each year, ECHO (Education Through Cultural and Historical Organizations) brings the ECHO Performing Arts Festival to communities across America. The Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center is pleased to be chosen as one of numerous venues across the country to host the ECHO 2010 Performing Arts Festival. Native and immigrant cultural performing artists from the ECHO partner regions of Alaska, Hawai’i, Mississippi, and Massachusetts come together to entertain and educate through a performance piece that shares their cultural traditions in an engaging and lively presentation, suitable for all ages. This year’s performance, Celebrate—Song, Dance & Story! takes us on a journey down life’s paths, from childhood to love and marriage and beyond. Using traditional and innovative stories, songs, and dances, we learn of challenges and triumphs, while also exploring the values of these communities—what is important to them—whether it is about respect for ancestral ways or the dangers of jealousy and vanity. ECHO Performing Arts Festival is in its 10th year of providing compelling educational programs with a Native American, Hawaiian Native, and Alaska Native base. Please join us in the Museum auditorium for the performance followed by a question & answer period. For families of all ages. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members.

ECHO (Education through Cultural and Historical Organizations) is an enrichment initiative serving children, teachers, and adult learners. ECHO programs are produced jointly and individually through a collaboration of six regional organizations: Alaska Native Heritage Center; North Slope Borough ECHO Project; Bishop Museum; New Bedford ECHO Project; Peabody Essex Museum; and the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians. Working with schools and communitybased organizations, ECHO programs amplify educational benefits, foster appreciation of culture and history and assist communities in maximizing the social benefits of new technologies. ECHO performers identified in image: (from left to right) Buck Willis, Lokomaika`i Lipscom, Annawon Weeden, Allison Warden, Stephen Blanchett, and José Vinagre.



Friday, Apr. 16, 11:30 am–12:30 pm


Week Wednesday, Apr. 14, 11 am–2 pm

New England Reptiles and Raptors

Marla Isaac, of New England Reptiles and Raptors, brings some slithering reptiles to the Museum. Meet a variety of turtles, a 5-foot boa constrictor, and Big Al—the alligator! An educator and rehabilitator for 25 years, Marla participates in many rescue programs on the south shore of Massachusetts. As part of her program, she emphasizes the importance of respecting wildlife and treating it properly. “Wildlife needs all the help it can get [as] humans have a lot of activities that cause wildlife to be injured. We are looking out for the animal’s welfare; if you want to care about an animal, do so the right way, don’t do it illegally. Otherwise, the animal is the one that becomes the victim.” The reptiles are on display in the Gathering Space with a halfhour presentation at 1 pm. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members.

Wingmasters: North American Birds of Prey

Thursday, Apr. 15, 1–2 pm

Wetu Model Workshop

Join Mashantucket Pequot Tribal member Gary Carter, Jr., to learn about the materials and methods of construction used by Native people in this region for building a traditional shelter called a wetu. These dome-shaped structures were masterfully constructed of available natural resources such as cedar saplings, bark, and cattail rushes. Participants explore this fascinating topic while making a model of a wetu of their own. Limited to 25 participants, ages 8 and older. There is no charge for this workshop; we welcome donations which go to the Mashantucket Pequot Maple Sugaring House renovation project. Call (800) 411-9671 by Apr. 14 to register.

Wildlife rehabilitators Julia Collier (Chickasaw/ Creek) and Jim Parks bring their popular program on rescued birds of prey back to the Museum. Their entertaining and educational program features 8 live birds including falcons, hawks, owls, and an eagle! Find out about raptors—their specialized feathers, habitats, and the owl’s amazing neck. Learn what to do if you find an injured or baby bird. Julia and Jim release all successfully rehabilitated birds back into the wild, but the birds used in their program, including the golden eagle, have sustained injuries that prevent them from ever living in the wild. In the Gathering Space. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members.



Family Fun Friday, Apr. 30, 11 am–3 pm

Gifts of the Land: Spring Thanksgiving Celebration This year our spring celebration features the Mashantucket Gallery exhibit, Through the Eyes of the Eagle: Illustrating Healthy Living for Children. Unfortunately the number of children diagnosed with Type II diabetes is steadily increasing and the artwork on exhibit focuses attention on that problem. Through games, storytelling, and other fun activities, Museum visitors explore ways to make healthy food choices and learn the difference between everyday snacks and sometimes treats. Enjoy the traditional music of Mystic River Drum singers Kenny and Tyson Merrick. They explain how in Native cultures, Eagle is a messenger representing balance, courage, strength, and wisdom. Following a story about Coyote the Trickster, you are invited to enter our “Challenge the Trickster” contest in which you can test your knowledge about tricky treats. Don’t miss traditional games scheduled for the Farmstead. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members.

Members’ Events Saturday, May 22, 8 am–7 pm

Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum

Saturday, Mar. 6, 10 am–12 noon

Mashantucket Pequot Maple Sugaring House Experience Mashantucket Pequot Tribal members Gary Carter, Jr., Jeremy Whipple, and Matthew Byron lead us on a late-winter, tree-tapping and maplesugaring experience. You can tap one of the many sugar maples on the reservation and see how Mashantucket Pequot tribal members have been harvesting and processing maple sap since the 1970s. Meet at the Museum’s main entrance at 10 am. Please wear appropriate footwear and clothing for a short hike in the woods. There is no charge for this tour, but any donations will help renovate the Maple Sugaring House. Limited to 25 members, ages 10 and older. Please RSVP by Mar. 5 to Sarah Eleazer at (860) 396-6890 or


Please join Mashantucket Pequot Museum staff and fellow Museum members for a trip across Long Island Sound in the high speed Sea Jet to visit the Shinnecock Nation Cultur al Center & Museum in Southampton, NY. The Shinnecock Museum offers us a look into their ancient and living Eastern Woodland heritage through exhibits such as “A Walk with the People,” a series of murals created by Shinnecock artist and Museum Director David Bunn Martine. Our visit includes an hour-long tour, Native American dance workshop, luncheon, and a visit to the nationally recognized Duck Walk Vineyards. Meet in the Museum’s lower parking lot at 8 am. Limited to 30 members, ages 12 and older. $95 with $25 due at registration. Please RSVP by May 1 to Sarah Eleazer at (860) 396-6890 or

Lectures, Hikes & Workshops Saturday, Apr. 10, 10 am–Noon

Saturday, Apr. 24, 9:30 am–4 pm

Forgotten Trails, Forgotten Sites

Teaching about American Indians of the Northeast: Who Is Telling the Story?

Spend a few hours on a spring morning with Senior Researcher Dr. Jason Mancini exploring the cultural landscape at Mashantucket. As we hike along old foot paths and new roads, we see foundations, stone walls, a 17th century Pequot fort, and a rhododendron thicket that lines the Cedar Swamp and is the source of the Pequot word Ohomowauke, or “owls nest.” This is an excellent opportunity to explore and learn about the historic Mashantucket landscape, Mashantucket life and culture, and our current historical research. Be prepared for a vigorous 2–3 mile hike, wear appropriate footwear and clothing, bring water, and expect a good time! Meet in the Gathering Space. Limited to 25 participants, ages 8 and older. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members. Call (800) 411-9671 by Apr. 7 to register. Saturday, Apr. 17 Session I, 10 am–Noon Session II, 1–3 pm

Genealogy Workshop

Our first genealogy workshop was a great success and we are pleased to offer it again. Please join professional genealogist Michael Spellmon, researchers Dr. Jason Mancini and Mashantucket Pequot Tribal member Debra Jones for this two-part workshop that gives participants the tools needed to explore family histories. The morning session introduces the methods and techniques of genealogical research, including how to locate documents and how to construct a family tree. The afternoon session is a hands-on exploration of various types of documents and how to interpret and use them, as well as useful tips for locating information on Indians and people of color. Please bring your family records and questions if you would like help with them. In the Research Library. Limited to 30 adults per session. $15/$10 Museum members for one session; $30/$20 Museum members for both sessions. Call (800) 411-9671 by Apr. 10 to register.

Saturday, Apr. 24, 1–2 pm

Paul Chaat Smith, Native Author and Essayist

Paul Chaat Smith reads from his newest literary work, Everything You Know about Indians is Wrong, a collection of essays written between 1994 and 2008. An enrolled member of the Comanche Tribe of Oklahoma, he is well-known for Like a Hurricane: The Indian Movement from Alcatraz to Wounded Knee, co-written with Robert Allen Warrior. Currently associate curator at the National Museum of the American Indian of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, Smith writes about the complex issues of Indian life: “However, despite my best efforts, irony lives, and I’m not oblivious to the fact that my career in the Indian business began with AIM and I am now curator for the Smithsonian: a government employee. People ask me how that feels, and I tell them that working for AIM in the 1970s and for NMAI in the 2000s has more in common than you might think.” Please join us in the Museum auditorium to hear an important voice in Native culture today. Paul Chaat Smith signs copies of his book in the Museum gift shop after the talk. Free with Museum admission, free to Museum members.

American Indians are a people in transition between history and contemporary America. This one-day workshop, led by Public Programs Director Trudie Lamb Richmond (Schaghticoke), explores a host of issues including federal recognition, sovereignty, gaming, land claims, and repatriation. The Northeast region has been the setting for a long period of contact, conflict, and controversy. Museum Senior Researcher Dr. Jason Mancini discusses how Indian people have been misunderstood and misrepresented in history. Participants also examine and discuss “myth” conceptions and the big question “Are you an Indian?” Paul Chaat Smith (Comanche) reads from his newest book, Everything You Know About Indians is Wrong, and joins a panel of Native people including University of Connecticut Professor Theodore Van Alst (Lakota) for a roundtable discussion. This program promises to be an exciting, eye-opening opportunity for learning. Limited to 25 participants. $35/$30 Museum members. .6 CEUs available. Call (860) 396-6899 by Apr. 23 to register.

Paul Chaat Smith



110 Pequot Trail, P.O. Box 3180 Mashantucket, CT 06338-3180



Mar. 6 Mar. 6 Mar. 13 Mar. 20

Apr. 3 Apr. 10 Apr. 14 Apr. 15 Apr. 16 Apr. 17 Apr. 17 Apr. 24 Apr. 24 Apr. 30

Members’ Maple Sugaring House Tour....... 6 Tricky Treats................................................................... 3 Celebrate—Song, Dance & Story!................... 4 Tricky Treats................................................................... 3

MAY Plate Full of Color....................................................... 3 Forgotten Trails, Forgotten Sites...................... 7 New England Reptiles and Raptors................ 5 Wetu Model Workshop.......................................... 5 Wingmasters: Birds of Prey................................... 5 Genealogy Workshop............................................. 7 Plate Full of Color....................................................... 3 Teaching about American Indians.................. 7 Native Author & Essayist........................................ 7 Spring Thanksgiving Celebration.................... 6

May 1 May 15 May 22

Knees Lifted High...................................................... 3 Knees Lifted High...................................................... 3 Members’ Shinnecock Museum Trip............. 6

ONGOING On exhibit through May 29 Through the Eyes of the Eagle...................................................... 2

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MashantucketPequotMuseum&ResearchCenter 110 Pequot Trail, Mashantucket, CT 06338-3180 Wed.–Sat. 10 am–4 pm, last Admission at 3 pm.

Please call 1-800-411-9671 or visit w w w. p e q u o t m u s e u m . o r g for additional information.

Take Exit 92 off of I-95 or Exit 79A off I-395, and follow signs to the Mashantucket Pequot Reservation and the Pequot Museum.

Museum Hours: Wednesday through Saturday, 10 am–4 pm, last admission at 3 pm

Native Visions  
Native Visions  

Native Visions is a publication of the Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center: Vol. 13, Issue 1; March–May 2010. Full Spring Ahead! Th...