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Friday, August 26, 2016

Circle of Cultures Enjoyable!
By Ginny Heth
It’s a really long ride to Bismarck and back in a school bus, but I’m sure glad that I decided to make the trip last Wednesday with the 7, 8, and 9th graders from the Westhope School to the University of Mary campus south of Bismarck for the Lewis and Clark Signature Event “Circle of Cultures”.
Three groups of students from the Westhope School made that trip last week -- the oldest students on Monday, the middle students on Wednesday and the youngest students on Friday.
When we arrived on the campus, we were greeted by a tour guide (she happened to be Jennie Lodoen’s sister, Rachel). From the bus we headed for the vendor area where the students enjoyed playing some trivia and winning some prizes before the first learning session of the afternoon.
We learned all about how the earth lodges were built on the University of Mary campus for this event. There are four of them, and they will all be moved to separate locations after the event is over. When the Mandan Indians built the lodges, the women were responsible for the construction and care. In fact, the lodges belonged to the women of the tribe and the men merely lived there with them. The Indians used their own muscles in the construction but these new lodges were built with chain saws and dump trucks! Brian Bitner and his son were solely responsible for the building of the lodges, although they had help from many National Guard soldiers in setting up the lodges on the University Campus.
Another thing that we decided we had to see while we were there was the Virtual Village, a 10-minute 3-D movie that gives visitors a fly-over view of the Missouri River and then up to the earthlodge village. It combines archeological evidence with modern-day technology to bring the past to life. It showed an earthlodge village from 1776.
Also on hand was “Corps of Discovery II: 200 Years to the Future,” which is a traveling exhibit that includes two interpretive tents and a performance tent called the “Tent of Many Voices” for live demonstrations, lectures, cultural presentations and audio-visual showings.
Spread throughout the event were vendors featuring food and goods from that time period. Visitors could try an elk or buffalo burger or walleye on a stick. We enjoyed sampling some barbequed buffalo steak and buffalo sausage before we had to choose what we were going to have for lunch! Hard decision!
The thing that I enjoyed the most about my day at the Circle of Cultures event was Keith Bear. Bear is a self-taught flute player who has been performing since 1986. He was born and educated in North Dakota and lives on the Fort Berthold Reservation with his family. He is the father of four. His performance included storytelling, explanations about making flutes, and, of course, music! His unique wooden flutes make beautiful, haunting music. He performed inside one of the earth lodges, which was packed with children and adults who thoroughly enjoyed the experience!
One of the things that our group didn’t get to take in was Clay S. Jenkinson. We tried to see him give his performance as Thomas Jefferson, but the room was full! I heard really good things and was sorry to have missed it. Clay Jenkinson is a North Dakota native, a humanities scholar, author and social commentator. He has presented to President Bush and Clinton and is regarded as one of the most entertaining public speakers in the United States. He has appeared on the “Today Show”, “Politically Incorrect”, CNN and a range of other national and regional broadcasts. He was the principal on-air commentator for Ken Burns’ PBS documentary on Thomas Jefferson. He also was the chief consultant, historian, script writer and on-camera field host for the Lewis and Clark documentary, “Travelin’ On.” He is currently a scholar in residence at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon. He also is currently editing the “North Dakota Lewis and Clark Journals” for the State Historical Society of North Dakota. Jenkinson is the author of “The Character of Meriwether Lewis: ‘Completely Metamorphosed’ in the American West”, “Message on the Wind: A Spiritual Odyssey on the Northern Plains” and “Thomas Jefferson: The Man of Light.” In addition to Jefferson, Jenkinson also portrays Meriwether Lewis, J. Robert Oppenheimer, John Wesley Powell, Sir Francis Bacon and William Shirer.
Some of the people in the group that I was in Bismarck with attended the performance of Amy Mossett interpreting Sacagawea. If you were at the Westhope Centennial Celebration this past summer, you probably enjoyed her performance here. Mossett, a Mandan-Hidatsa member of the Three Affiliated Tribes of North Dakota, has spent more than 15 years researching the oral and written histories of Sacagawea. She has traveled across the country and abroad, presenting the story of Sacagawea, her life among the Hidatsa and her role in the Lewis and Clark expedition. She was invited to the White House on three occasions to celebrate and honor Sacagawea. In January 2001, she accepted a citation from President Clinton, which conferred honorary military status to Sacagawea. In 2002, Mossett was one of three nationally recognized experts interviewed by National Geographic Magazine for their feature story on Sacagawea. Time Magazine’s recent Lewis and Clark special feature issue described Mossett as “the country’s foremost Sacagawea impressionist.” Mossett is a graduate of Minot State University and the University of North Dakota. She has spent most of her life along the Little Missouri River in western North Dakota and resided with her family in Twin Buttes and New Town.
All in all, it was a very enjoyable day -- despite the rain and cool weather -- and was well worth the long bus trip!

Re-Bellied Snake Found Near Westhope
One day this past week, an employee at Ward Williston Company south of Westhope found a small snake outside of a building. When he investigated, it was a snake that he didn’t recognize and after talking with fellow employees, neither did any of them. The snake, which was small enough to fit inside of a pop bottle, was taken to the Westhope school science teacher. He was able to find the following information about the snake and come to find out it is a snake that is native to our area -- although I haven’t talked to anyone who has seen one before! The small snake was gray on the back and bright red on the belly. It would open it’s mouth widely at people, but did not attempt to bite.
Since this snake is said to belong in our area, we thought you’d find it interesting to learn a little about these small reptiles, who do not -- in fact, can not-- harm humans!

Bottineau Will Host
Golden Harvest

Five area families will be honored at the 48th annual Golden Harvest Banquet to be held Monday, November 8, 2004 at the Bottineau Senior Citizens Center. Sponsored by the Bottineau County Agricultural Improvement Association, the Golden harvest Banquet seeks to honor Bottineau county area citizens who have been active supporters of agriculture and their communities. Honored guests for 2004 are: District 1 - Mr. & Mrs. Delmar Haberman, Bottineau; District 2 - Mr. & Mrs. Arnold Hasenwinkel, Bottineau; District 3 - Layton Gimbel, Souris; District 4 - Paul & June Stratton, Westhope and District 5 - Clair & Eudene Steen, Glenburn. Friends and family wishing to join in celebration with the honored guests will enjoy a home cooked dinner with all the trimmings and special entertainment. Tickets for the event to begin at 6 p.m. will cost $10 for adults and $5 for children under 18. They can be purchased from the NDSU Extension Service - Bottineau County office or any agricultural improvement association director.
Directors for the Bottineau County Agricultural Improvement Association are: Pres. Wally Brandjord, Bottineau; V. Pres. Joe Henry, Westhope; Treas. Paul Solberg, Bottineau; Sect. Tim Semler, Extension Agent; Stewart Sisk, Antler; Dwight Tolstad, Westhope; Jon Kersten, Newburg; Greg Morlock, Lansford; Steve Thiel, Kramer; Mike Erdman, Willow City; Rodney Steen, Glenburn; Paul Berge, Souris; Dan Marquardt, Bottineau; Jeff Nehring, Willow City; Terry McDonald, Souris and Warren Miller, Newburg.


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