Events

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Big Read Wichita 2024 Events

Some events require paid registration
Some events require free registration
Events at McConnell Air Force Base are open only to persons with access to the base

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Upcoming Events

Indigenous Narratives Through Art: A Presentation with Taiomah Rutledge
Taiomah Rutledge, a First Nation artist belonging to the Ojibwe, Meskwaki and Dakota people, presents a showing and discussion of his work with ink, digital media, eco-printing and serigraphy using various substrates like old ledgers, watercolor and Bristol paper. Taiomah, co-founder of the Warclan Art Collective, will also share his journey as a First Nations artist and the evolution of his story through art.
April 14, 2-3:30 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Big Read Community Discussion (Newton)
The NEA Big Read selection for 2024 is There There by Tommy Orange! In this novel, Orange traces the intersecting lives of 12 characters from Native communities whose voices and perspectives converge at the first ever Big Oakland Powwow. Copies of the book are now available for borrowing from Newton Public Library.
April 15, 6:30-7:30 p.m., Newton Public Library, 720 Oak St.
Craftaholics
Adult crafting program. We will make photo displays and talk about the importance of family and reference the familal ties in There There.
April 15, 7-8:30 p.m., McConnell AFB Library Programming Room, 53476 Wichita St. Bldg. 412
Library Lounge Indigenous Stories: Barking Water
This Library Lounge series will show three films created by Indigenous filmmakers that feature stories of the modern First Nations experience. For each film, we'll have crafts, refreshments, and a grand prize drawing. Feel free to also bring any personal craft projects or to-do list items to work on during the movie.
April 16, 6-8 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Bradford Memorial Book Club (El Dorado)
Discussion of 2024 Big Read book, There There by Tommy Orange.
April 16, 6:30-7:40 p.m., Bradford Memorial Library, 611 S. Washington
Book Edge Book Club (Goddard)
Discussion of 2024 Big Read book, There There by Tommy Orange.
April 16, 6:30-7:30 p.m., Goddard Public Library, 201 N. Main St.
Books and Beyond Book Club (Goddard)
Discussion of 2024 Big Read book, There There by Tommy Orange.
April 18, 6-7 p.m., Goddard Public Library, 201 N. Main St.
Big Read Panel Discussion: Native Americans and Activism

Many of the rights secured by Native Americans were won through the efforts of activist groups in the 20th century, such as the American Indian Movement of the 1970s. Today, this activism has evolved into a variety of movements from the protests at Standing Rock to the grassroots movement for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, which tries to bring awareness to violence against indigenous women in the United States and Canada. In addition to traditional activism, many Native Americans today are sharing their voice in other ways such as native authors sharing stories about the experience of Native Americans in the modern world, like in Tommy Orange's novel There There, contemporary native artists blending tradition with ideological themes such as environmental protection, fighting indigenous stereotypes, poverty in tribal communities, etc. and Natives taking on roles in government, health care, education and more to enact change in the very institutions that have historically been closed to them.

In this informal panel discussion, Laura Razo, Urban Indian Program Coordinator at Hunter Health (Kickapoo/Prairie Band Potawatomi), will lead a discussion with D'Arlyn Bell (Cherokee), Taiomah Rutledge (Ojibwe, Meskwaki and Dakota), and Clifford Stone, Jr. (Kiowa, Cheyenne, Arapaho and Cherokee) where they will share their thoughts and experiences on Native American activism, why it has been so important to tribal communities, and the various ways they have used their voice or helped amplify other Native voices to bring awareness to injustices done to indigenous peoples as well as highlight and support the achievements of Native people in their communities.

April 18, 6-7:30 p.m., Advanced Learning Library, 711 W. 2nd
Beneath the Bones: Big Read Mystery Night
You are an archaeology student attending a seminar that opens a hidden university cold case. In 1965 Northern California, a team of archaeologists excavated the lands of the Indigenous Ohlone, Mutsun, and Awaswas peoples in search of historical artifacts, but the excavation was abruptly halted when one of the team was found mysteriously dead. Now you are called to uncover the truth – what happened on those lands, who is to blame, and what stories of the past are buried beneath the bones? Dinner provided by Truly Amazing Catering. Registration opens on March 18 at 9 a.m.
April 19, 7-9:30 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Register
Fire Feather Banner Beading Class
One of the best known art forms practiced by American Indians is beadwork. Today, beadwork has come to symbolize Native American heritage and is used to make belts, jewelry, and most notably, adorns much of the regalia worn at powwows and dance contests. In this native beading workshop, you'll create a tiny feather banner in the fire colors to wear or watch over your houseplants. This is a beginner loom beading class using larger beads taught by Indian Museum Education Coordinator, Michelle Conine (Shawnee-Delaware). Instructor will supply all materials. Class size is limited.
April 20, 10 a.m.-Noon, Advanced Learning Library, 711 W. 2nd
Register
School's Out Powwow
Join us for Wichita Public Schools Title VI Native American Indian Education Programs Annual School's Out Powwow. Come support Native American students in our community who work hard organizing, running, and participating in this powwow. Everyone is welcome for this free event. Students in the Title VI program will participate in several ways including acting as a student master of ceremony, student arena director, participating at the drum, color guard, and set up. We will also crown our 2024-2026 Title VI princess. Gourd dancing will begin at 2:30 p.m., a dinner break will occur at 4:30 p.m., and the grand entry will start at 6 p.m.
April 20, 2:30-7 p.m., Mid-America All-Indian Museum, 650 N. Seneca
Yoga Intertribal: Music and Movement
Taking inspiration from the Native American Medicine Wheel, this free yoga class will incorporate both locally produced and nationally renowned soundscapes and intertribal music in a power yoga class for strength, focus, and relaxation. Men, women, and children 7+ are welcome to attend. This class is instructed by a 200-hr Registered Yoga Teacher with Yoga Alliance. Limited mats and yoga props available to borrow.
April 21, 2-3:15 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
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Previous Events

As the Page Turns Book Discussion
Adult book discussion featuring There There and foods with indigenous roots.
March 18, 5:30-6:30 p.m., McConnell AFB Library Programming Room, 53476 Wichita St. Bldg. 412
Big Read storytime for 2 year olds
Join other 2 year olds and their caregivers for reading, singing and play based on the companion title We All Play.
March 19, 9:30-10 a.m., Andover Public Library, 1511 E. Central Ave
Big Read Pre-School Storytime
Join other preschoolers and their caregivers for reading, singing and play based on the companion title We All Play.
March 19, 10:30-11 a.m., Andover Public Library, 1511 E. Central Ave
Peyote Flower Bracelet Beading Class
Create a bracelet using a flat peyote stitch. This is a more difficult stitch, some beading experience will be helpful. School-aged children are welcome, but must be accompanied by an adult. $35 registration fee.
March 23, 1-3 p.m., Mid-America All-Indian Museum, 650 N. Seneca
Special Big Read Story Time
We will be having a special story time, reading the Big Read companion titles. We will be playing indigenous games for children.
March 26, 10-11 a.m., McConnell AFB Library Programming Room, 53476 Wichita St. Bldg. 412
NEA Big Read Wichita Lunch Chat with Dr. Vicki Ronn
Bring your lunch and join us for a book chat about the 2024 Big Read book, There There by Tommy Orange.
March 26, Noon-1 p.m., Edmund Stanley Library Multipurpose Room, 2100 W. University Ave.
Trauma Legacies Across Generations: Conceptualizing the Characters in There There
Dr. Julie Clark (Kiowa and descendant of the Absentee Shawnee Tribe) LPC and Psychologist will give an overview of how the thoughts and behaviors of the There There characters illustrate, from a mental health perspective, the passing of traumatic experiences from one generation to the next followed by a presentation of possible treatment options to break the cycle of intergenerational transmission of trauma.
March 27, 3:30-5 p.m., Alford Branch Library, 3447 S. Meridian
STEM Club
Program for preteens and teens. We will be talking about stones and crystals and their meaning(s) with Native peoples. We will also make geodes by growing them through chemistry.
March 27, 4:30-5:30 p.m., McConnell AFB Youth Center, 53476 Wichita St. Bldg. 412
Doc and Talk: Gather
Join us for a showing of the documentary Gather. It is a film that "follows the stories of natives on the frontlines of a growing movement to reconnect with spiritual and cultural identities that were devastated by genocide." After watching, we will hold a short discussion about what we watched, and how it ties in with our 2024 Big Read selection, There There by Tommy Orange. Space is limited, and tickets are first-come, first-served.
March 27, 5:15-6:45 p.m., Walters Branch Library, 4195 E. Harry
Beading Workshop
Create a tiny feather banner in the fire colors to wear or watch over your houseplants. This is a beginner loom beading class using larger beads. All supplies provided. Class limited to 10 participants.
March 30, 1-3 p.m., Andover Public Library, 1511 E. Central Ave
Preschool Storytime
Preschoolers (ages 3-5) are invited to celebrate Native American heritage with Preschool Storytime! Featured books read aloud will be We All Play by Julie Fett and We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom. Enjoy music, puppets, and the flannel story "The Three Sisters."
April 2, 10-10:30 a.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Library Lounge Indigenous Stories: Smoke Signals
This Library Lounge series will show three films created by Indigenous filmmakers that feature stories of the modern First Nations experience. For each film, we'll have crafts, refreshments, and a grand prize drawing. Feel free to also bring any personal craft projects or to-do list items to work on during the movie.
April 2, 6-8 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Preschool Storytime
Preschoolers (ages 3-5) are invited to celebrate Native American heritage with Preschool Storytime! Featured books read aloud will be We All Play by Julie Fett and We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom. Enjoy music, puppets, and the flannel story "The Three Sisters."
April 3, 10-10:30 a.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Music as Medicine with Elexa Dawson
Join us for an incredible evening of music and storytelling with the Walnut Valley Bluegrass Festival headliner, Elexa Dawson. Elexa comes from the Citizen Potawatomi Nation based near Shawnee, Oklahoma, and her captivating red-dirt-honey vocals lay on the listener like a blanket of good feelings, giving the gift of healing through sound. Sultry soul meets rural roots at this beautiful event.
April 5, 6-7:15 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Housing and Healing
Many of the characters in this year's Big Read book There There struggle with addiction. Research shows that stable housing plays a vital role in people's recovery from substance use disorders. Join the Wichita Journalism Collaborative in a discussion of how addiction and housing may intersect.
April 8, 5:30-6:30 p.m., Advanced Learning Library, 711 W. 2nd
Teen Tuesday: Indigenous Trickster Tales
6th - 12th grade teens are invited to explore the epic tricksters of Indigenous folklore. We'll have black bean soup and blue corn tortilla chips as a snack, make paper plate dreamcatchers, and play "Trickster Coup," a variation of the card game Coup in which teens will pretend to be various trickster characters like Coyote, Raven, and Fox.
April 9, 4-5 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Library Lounge Indigenous Stories: Songs My Brother Taught Me
This Library Lounge series will show three films created by Indigenous filmmakers that feature stories of the modern First Nations experience. For each film, we'll have crafts, refreshments, and a grand prize drawing. Feel free to also bring any personal craft projects or to-do list items to work on during the movie.
April 9, 6-8 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Senior Wednesday: Keeper of the Plains
Erected in 1974 where the Big and Little Arkansas Rivers meet, the "Keeper of the Plains" is the triumphant outcome of a collaboration between Kiowa-Comanche artist and designer Blackbear Bosin, the Kansas Gas & Electric Co., and the Wichita community itself. Yet the Keeper is also a triumph of iconic design and its influence continues to grow, finding new expressions in each generation. Presented by Michelle Conine of the Mid-America All-Indian Museum.
April 10, 1:30-2:30 p.m., Advanced Learning Library, 711 W. 2nd St.
Tween Zone: Latin American Legends
3rd - 5th graders are invited to explore stories, fables, and legends from Latin America. Meet with friends after school for snacks, crafts, games, and book talks.
April 10, 4-5 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Kanza Kids
Program for school aged children. We will be making worry stones and talking about the history of them.
April 10, 4:30-5:30 p.m., McConnell AFB Youth Center, 53476 Wichita St. Bldg. 412
Adventures at the Library: Flowers with O'Keefe
K - 2nd Graders are invited to discover Georgia O'Keeffe, known as the mother of American modernism, who was inspired by the landscape of Abiquiú, a Tewa Pueblo settlement where she made her home. Test your art skills with an art craft inspired by O'Keeffe, as well as listen to books read aloud and enjoy an afterschool snack.
April 11, 4-5 p.m., Derby Public Library, 1600 E. Walnut Grove
Big Read Book Discussion (Wichita)
Join us for a discussion of the 2024 Big Read title, There There by Tommy Orange.
April 11, 6-7 p.m., Advanced Learning Library, 711 W. 2nd
Storytime Art Spark
Join us for a FREE Storytime Art Spark, Make-and-Take Workshop. Local artist Sloane Dryer will be reading NEA Big Read companion books for young readers We All Play and We Are Grateful. After story time, families can create an art project together that relates to the stories.
April 13, 10:30-11:30 a.m., CityArts, 334 N. Mead
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