The month that I have worked here at Conner Prairie has been anything but boring. I’ve ridden in a helium balloon
almost 400 feet in the air, held newborn sheep, goats and chickens, watched cannons blow and cavalry charge, and even had yodeling stuck in my head.
This weekend, Indiana Festival
promises to be an event to remember. Who doesn’t love eating, drinking, dancing and being outdoors on a beautiful June day? I have always had a special interest in learning and experiencing cultures separate from my own. Yodeling was only the beginning. Every day I hear more about the performances and activities we are hosting and can’t believe the variety! We have it all from polka, Scottish piping, gospel singing, Zumba and salsa demonstrations, and Mexican and German folk tales.
I don’t know much about jazz, but I know that we are honored to host Dr. David Baker
, a world-renowned jazz legend, who is hosting a discussion about great jazz musicians from the area and holding an autograph session.
Personally, I am very excited to hear the stories of Dr. Juana Watson who is originally from the Central Mountain Region of Mexico. She tells folk tales and makes chocolate and tortillas the traditional way that her ancestors, the Aztecs, made them even before they were conquered by the Spanish many centuries ago. Before I met her yesterday, I never knew the origins of chocolate or that when the Spanish arrived looking for gold all they found were huge quantities of cocoa beans. The Aztecs used the beans as money. I can’t wait to learn more. The chocolate, sometimes mixed with cinnamon or brown sugar, is delicious too!
I am a food enthusiast at heart, so the fact that the Indiana Humanities Council
is debuting their traveling Food for Thought
exhibit here thrills me! This weekend they will have several demonstrations such as sauerkraut stories, homemade noodles and German pastries. For the first time ever, we are also hosting a beer and wine tent featuring German and Mexican beers and wines, as well as domestics. Then I’ll probably run over and visit our global tastes area to experience flavors from Mexico, Germany, the Caribbean, Greece and more. I’m worried I won’t have enough time in one day!
I could write all day about the spectacular activities we have planned, but I think that it is much more enjoyable to experience it yourself. Bring the kids, your significant other or family and friends and come see how all of these unique cultures have intertwined and made Indiana the wonderful state that it is! What are you looking forward to at Indiana Festival?