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Artpark's Native American-themed Strawberry Moon Festival serves to unite community

by jmaloni
Mon, Jun 24th 2019 08:10 pm

Unity is theme of day's offerings

Though the music coming from the Artpark Amphitheater on Saturday may have, at times, sounded like a typical Tuesday night concert, it served a much different purpose.

Artpark & Company’s first Strawberry Moon Festival was as a means to educate the community on the Tuscarora and Cayuga nations through Native American singing, dancing, crafts, fare and even a parade. Culture and customs were defined, explained and then presented to hundreds of onlookers – onlookers who were invited to become participants.

The spotlight also shone on “Artpark Bridges.” The program united musical mastermind Cyro Baptista and Buffalo’s Slyboots Circus with performers from People Inc., Empower and Buffalo Public Schools.

Guests were welcomed by elders Allan Jamieson Sr. (Cayuga) and Neil Patterson Sr. (Tuscarora) prior to a welcome ceremony at the far edge of the venue’s red brick road, and then again ahead of performances by Thunderhand Joe & The Medicine Show, Alan Doyle, Sam Roberts Band and A Tribe Called Red.

The eight-hour event was a partnership between Artpark & Company, Kakekalanicks Indigenous Arts & Consultancy, and Funtime Presents/“Coors Light Concerts.”


Neil Patterson Sr. (Tuscarora Nation) and Allan Jamieson Sr. (Cayuga Nation)

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