As collectors and dealers in Native American material culture (ZuniLink, Native-JewelryLink and Native-PotteryLink ), if Sue and I know of a Native American Indian exhibit within 50 miles of me, I will attend. This was the first time for an event in Cape Coral, Florida, last weekend. As a first time event, it was modestly impressive and successful.
The crowd grew over the course of the day - this was day one of a two-day booking. By the time I left , a couple hundred people had come by.
There were perhaps 20 booths by Native American artists. One of them hosted Rex A. Begaye, a Navajo (Dine) native. Begaye was one of, if not the primary, organizer of this show.
The roped off dance area, where Grand Entry of the artists took place accompanied by the songs and drum of a Native American group, was MC'd by Ric Bird.
The Grand Entry was followed by Native American fancy dancers.
One of the highlights was an encampment of a family of Cree Indians from Saskatchewan, Canada.
The woman explained the dances by her children while the father drummed and sang dance songs. The setting included a traditional lodge or tipi. The mother explained that the tipi is assembled by the woman at each new encampment and is her property, as is all of the tipi's contents.
Trapped furs and bead work, some of it quite intricate, were on display, The woman was very proud of her work, her family (8 children) and her heritage. Her explanations of life as a Plains Indian were enlightening. It's a beautiful thing and a shame more youngsters were not there to learn about this interesting subject.
This show now has closed. But the organizers say they will be back next year. They also have a show planned for Sarasota, FL after the first of the year. It's worth a little research to find it and place a hold on the day.