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Celebrate Abenaki heritage at Maritime Museum

FERRISBURGH — In what has become an annual tradition, the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum will host Abenaki Heritage Weekend from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., on Saturday, June 22 and Sunday, June 23. The festival is held in collaboration with Abenaki Heritage Weekend/VCNAA. The event, presented in partnership with the Vermont Abenaki Artists Association, gives visitors an Abenaki perspective on life in the Champlain Valley and farther abroad in the traditional homelands. All activities are included with museum admission.
Members of the Elnu Abenaki Tribe, the Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk, the Koasek Traditional Band of the Koas Abenaki Nation, and the Vermont Abenaki Artists Association work with Museum staff to plan and present the event, with the advice and support of the Vermont Commission on Native American Affairs.
The Native people at this event are experts in the living indigenous arts and traditions around 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 items for personal use or for sale. Tribal members will also share songs, drumming, dancing, games, food preparation, and other life skills. 
This year’s weekend of festivities will include a talk by Abenaki scholar and activist Frederick M. Wiseman, a storytelling, musical performance by Joe and Jesse Bruchac, the exhibit “Nebizun: Water is Life,” a film “Nebi: Abenaki Ways of Knowing Water,” the arts marketplace and more. 
For more information go to lcmm.org.
Nebizon: Water is Life
Inspired by Wobanaki Grandmothers who have been leading Water Walks to pray for water, the 2019 focus exhibit presented in the LCMM’s Schoolhouse Gallery brings together works by Abenaki artists and artisans of the Champlain Valley to illustrate the Abenaki relationship to water and its importance to the health of the world around us. Special thanks to Frederick M. Wiseman for sharing family photographs and historic artifacts used by earlier generations of Abenaki people along the waterways of N’Dakinna. 
During Abenaki Heritage Weekend, June 22-23, guest curator Vera Longtoe Sheehan will host a gallery talk each afternoon. 
“My education in traditional fiber arts began when I was six years old,” said Sheehan. “I began to learn about finger weaving and twining textiles from my father, the same way it has been passed down for countless generations. With practice, I grew as an artist, and my passion grew as well.”
The exhibit will be on view through August.  

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