Red Earth expands events statewide in big tourism push

Posted by Eric Oesch on 02/21/2020

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – For nearly 40 years Red Earth Inc has focused its efforts on the operation of the Red Earth Art Center in Oklahoma City and the annual summer Red Earth Festival that attracts visitors from throughout the globe. The non-profit organization has announced efforts to expand its programming starting in 2020 to include events in communities throughout Oklahoma. A series of collaborative efforts are planned with tribal and arts organizations in Shawnee, Tulsa, Wewoka, Oklahoma City and Claremore.

            “This is a significant time for Red Earth,” said Vickie Norick, Chairman of the Red Earth Board of Directors. “Beginning in 2020, Red Earth Art Center operations will change from being housed in a single ‘brick and mortar’ location to a dynamic range of off-site offerings.

            “We are so pleased to expand our events to include sites outside of central Oklahoma,” she said. “We’re going to bring the Red Earth to the people.”

MVSKOKE VOICES

            MVSKOKE VOICES, a collaborative art show with the Seminole Nation Museum in Wewoka is the first of a series of Red Earth events and shows presented throughout the state. The collaborative MVSKOKE VOICES art show will run April through mid-June 2020 featuring original works by some of the nation’s most prominent Creek and Seminole artists. Since opening almost four decades ago, the Seminole Nation Museum has hosted over a half million visitors from every state and over 100 foreign countries.

RED EARTH SPRING MARKET

            Red Earth will work alongside the Will Rogers Memorial Museum and with the Claremore Chamber of Commerce to present the new Red Earth Spring Market April 17-18. The event will feature an arts and crafts market, children’s activities, storytelling and social dances both inside the expansive museum and on the lawn overlooking the City of Claremore and Rogers State University.

34th ANNUAL RED EARTH FESTIVAL

            Red Earth’s annual marque event, the Red Earth Festival scheduled June 13-14, 2020 will relocate to the Native-owned Grand Event Center at the Grand Casino Hotel & Resort in Shawnee for the 34th annual event. Recent Red Earth Festivals have had an economic impact of over $4 million to the state.

            “Our 34th annual Red Earth Festival will feature America’s best and most accomplished artists - the same quality artists our guests have become accustomed to seeing each year,” said Norick. “The Festival will also include our other popular events including ‘Ask the Expert,’ Native dancing, storytelling and music performances.

YOUTH ART SHOW & COMPETITION

            The Red Earth Youth Art Show & Competition will move to the fall when the Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory Art Gallery at Myriad Gardens plays host to the children’s art show September 10 – October 20 in downtown Oklahoma City.  The art education event is open to Native youth, ages 8-18, competing in three age divisions for prize money in categories including pottery, painting/drawing, graphics/photography, sculpture, basketry, beadwork, cultural items and jewelry.

RED EARTH PARADE

INAUGURAL FALLFEST

            A significant new event celebrating Oklahoma City’s Indigenous People’s day will kick off with the popular Red Earth Parade on Saturday, Oct. 17 and will culminate with an Arts & Crafts Market and Pow Wow celebrating Native art and culture at the Myriad Botanical Gardens.

            “We’re thrilled to present Red Earth FallFest at the 17-acre Myriad Botanical Gardens in downtown Oklahoma City,” said Norick. “It’s a beautiful park that  was awarded the title of Best Urban Open Space by the Urban Land Institute in 2015 in a competition that included parks from all over the world. Red Earth FallFest will be Oklahoma City’s first major Indigenous People’s Day celebration.”

CONTEMPORARY ART SHOW

TULSA COMMUNITY COLLEGE

            A partnership with Tulsa Community College in downtown Tulsa Red Earth will feature a Contemporary Art Exhibition at the Center for Creativity during the month of October 2020. A workshop for students enrolled at the C4C School of Visual and Performing arts is scheduled in conjunction with the event.

RED EARTH TREEFEST

            The Student Center at Oklahoma State University Oklahoma City is the site for the Sixth Annual Red Earth Treefest scheduled November 13 through December 11, 2020. Red Earth Treefest features 18 Native tribes from throughout Oklahoma invited to participate in the annual holiday event by creating handmade ornaments and art objects for their own tribal Christmas Trees made to highlight their distinctive cultures. The exhibition explains the diverse cultures that make Oklahoma Unique.

            “Every one of our projects are designed to educate,” said Norick. “During Treefest, we utilize the ornaments on the Christmas trees as teaching tools to tell each tribe’s distinctive heritage.”

            Red Earth has garnered numerous accolades through its 40-year history. Red Earth was a finalist for the 2018 ONE Award for the Arts presented by the Oklahoma Center for Non-Profits, and the Oklahoma Travel Industry Association has twice named Red Earth Oklahoma’s Outstanding Event.

            The January 2020 issue of COWBOYS & INDIANS MAGAZINE lists Red Earth Festival in their "Best of the Fests" story, while USA TODAY has named the Red Earth Festival one of 10 Great Places to Celebrate American Indian Culture. Red Earth has also been recognized by the American Bus Association a Top 100 Event in North America, joining a list that includes the Rose Bowl Parade, Calgary Stampede and the Mardi Gras celebration in New Orleans.

            Red Earth, Inc. is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization with a mission to promote the rich traditions of American Indian arts and cultures through education, a premier festival, a museum and fine art markets. The organization is an Allied Arts member agency and AdventureRoad Travel Partner. Red Earth is funded in part by the Chickasaw Nation, Choctaw Nation, Oklahoma Arts Council, National Endowment for the Arts, James H & Madalynne Norick Foundation, Kirkpatrick Family Fund, Oklahoma’s News 4, Myriad Botanical Gardens, Oklahoma’s Adventure Road and Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City.

Red Earth, Inc. is recognized as the region’s premier organization for advancing the understanding and continuation of Native American traditional and contemporary culture and arts. 

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