As the Family Reunion Festival returns, so do classes offered by the Cultural Heritage Center. Whether wanting to learn how to bead or get information about preserving family history, there’s something for everyone at the CHC classes.

Creating culturally relevant items

Throughout the weekend, there will be classes about how to make several items, including bandoliers, loom beading, chokers, flat stitch earrings, hand drums, shawl applique and fringing, moccasins, and corn husk dolls. All skill levels are welcome.

Seating is limited and on a first-come, first-served basis. Most of the classes are free, but the moccasin class costs $40 for materials, and the drum and shawl classes each cost $35 for materials. The CHC gift shop also sells kits for hand drums, moccasins and shawls, and participants who purchase the kits are guaranteed a seat. Drum making classes are for those age 12 and older.

Loom beading

Preserving history

For those who are interested in researching their genealogy or preserving family history, there are also classes available.

There will be demos for the genealogical research program, Ancestors, and workshops about how to digitize and care for family archives.

The CHC gift shop offers an information table for those interested in learning more about the Trail of Death Association.

Tribal members and families will also have the opportunity to participate in heritage interviews.

Other experiences

From 12:15 to 1 p.m. Saturday, Sharon Hoogstraten will have a presentation and book singing for her book, Dancing for Our Tribe: Potawatomi Tradition in the New Millennium. Hoogstraten traveled to many states over the course of a decade to portray contemporary Potawatomi in regalia. Her book includes more than 150 formal portraits as well as hand-written statements from the Tribal members pictured.

There will be multiple Q&A sessions about and tours of the Aviary. A bus will leave on the hour each morning of Festival to take participants to the Aviary, where they can see eagle residents such as Nnoshe (Stepmother), Archer and Netem-nos (Flo).

Registration is required, and those interested can sign up at the CHC.

For more information, view the schedule of events handed out at registration or call the CHC at 405-848-5830.