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Friends of the Turtle to hold information session


Mon, Mar 4th 2024 10:00 am

Friends of the Turtle, a community organizing group, will hold an information session for the public at 7 p.m. Monday, March 4, at the Niagara Arts and Cultural Center, 1201 Pine Ave., Niagara Falls.

The program is titled “How Can Reawakening The Turtle Help to Reawaken Niagara Falls?” It is free and open to the public.

A press release stated, “The Turtle building, designed by Northern Arapaho architect Dennis Sun Rhodes, was opened in 1981 and housed the former Native American Center for the Living Arts in downtown Niagara Falls. Built in the shape of a turtle, the zoomorphic structure represents the Haudenosaunee creation story in which the Earth is created on the back of a sea turtle. The building is currently privately owned and vacant.

“The Niagara Falls Historic Preservation Commission (NFHPC), on Jan. 18, voted unanimously to approve recommending that the Niagara Falls City Council grant historic landmark status for the Turtle. The City Council, which is the legislative body responsible for designating local landmark status, will hold a public meeting on the issue at 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 8, at City Hall, located at 745 Main St., Niagara Falls.

“Friends of the Turtle, a community organizing group, was formed to promote landmark status for the Turtle building, at 25 Rainbow Blvd., Niagara Falls, and to bring together interested parties in an effort to work with the current owner to “reawaken the Turtle” as a viable Native arts and cultural center. The group includes Native representatives, museum professionals, historic preservation specialists, tourism promoters and scholars.”

For more information about the event, contact Ally Spongr DeGon, interim director of the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center, at 716-300-8477.

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