Bentonville’s Museum of Native American History to Host Symposium

05/31/2018 05:00 PM
BENTONVILLE, Ark. – The Museum of Native American History on June 14-17 will present the second annual Native American Cultural Symposium.

This year’s theme is “Reunification through Reinvention: The Creative Visions of Contemporary Native America.”

The symposium will bring together Native cultural leaders for a weekend of performances, presentations and workshops. MONAH seeks to renew the connection between the historical traditions presented in its permanent collection and modern Native peoples. By using community and museum spaces, visitors and presenters alike will be invited into opportunities to cultivate understanding, respect and an increased awareness of cultural context by exploring Native art, theatre, music, writing, cuisine and film.

The museum will host free events throughout the Bentonville community during the symposium weekend and joins hands with Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art to begin the weekend of events. Crystal Bridges will host a film showing at 8 p.m. on June 14 of Sundance World Cinema Documentary Jury Award winner “Rumble: The Indians who Rocked the World.”

MONAH’s symposium featured presenters will also participate in musical, artistic and storytelling performances at the daytime Garden Party (11 a.m. to 4 p.m.) and evening Forest Concert Series (7 p.m.) hosted by Crystal Bridges on June 16. A complimentary shuttle service will offer transportation throughout the day on Saturday to connect the downtown Bentonville square with the Crystal Bridges activities and the full schedule of events at MONAH.

The Record Downtown venue in Bentonville will also host symposium events on Friday, June 15 featuring keynote speaker Suzan Shown Harjo (7 p.m.) Harjo is a lifelong policy advocate and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Harjo will join the symposium panel discussion with the other featured presenters, including 17-year-old environmental activist and musician Xiuhtezcatl Martinez (2 p.m.), storyteller Gayle Ross (1:30 p.m.), artist Bunky Echo-Hawk (10 a.m.), “The Voice” finalist Brooke Simpson and Word Sender award winner Bobby Bridger. The evening will conclude with performances from Simpson (8:45 p.m.) and Bridger (9:15 p.m.). The convenient location of Record Downtown also allows visitors to explore the community and enjoy dining and shopping around the Bentonville Square.

In partnership with Fulcrum Press, the museum itself will be home to workshops and talks held in the Great Room throughout the weekend. These events, among others, include a writer’s guide to the publishing industry, an exploration of traditional storytelling skills and a demonstration of Lakota bows and arrows (12 p.m., June 17). A prairie-to-table dining experience at the museum will conclude the symposium at 6 p.m. on June 17 with proceeds benefiting the Seneca Black Elk Mathews Scholarship Fund for Native youth attending Oklahoma State University.

For a schedule of events and more information about the presenters and performers, visit
or call 479-273-2456 or email The?museum of is located at 202 SW O St.


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