Shinnecock Community Notes



. Greetings from Shinnecock.

We held our annual tree lighting ceremony at the flagpole last Tuesday.

The evening was thick with holiday cheer with many families attending. And while the cold coaxed most of us to turn in a little early, it did not hinder us from enjoying a few carols and the warm heartedness of one anther’s company.

Shinnecock Women Helping Hands continued its tradition of serving hungry visitors hot cocoa and cookies, including our guest of honor, Santa Claus. Santa did a fantastic job of entertaining adults with his jovial humor just as much as he entertained the little ones with his majestic presence. We look forward to seeing him again this weekend at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum’s annual Winter Arts and Craft Festival.

As a special addition to this year’s festival, the museum, in conjunction with the Shinnecock Shellfish Hatchery and Environmental Center, will present a vibrant new exhibit, “People of the Shore: The Maritime History of the Place of Shells.”

Using artifacts and historical and present day photographs, the exhibit depicts the distinctive and enduring connection between we Indians of Eastern Long Island and the surrounding sea. It features images of lifelong and present day Shinnecock baymen, some as captured through the works of self-taught photographer and tribal member, Herman “Chuck” Quinn. The field operations manager of the Shinnecock Shellfish Hatchery and Environmental Center, last year, Chuck, on behalf our Shinnecock Nation, won a photography award from the Administration for Native Americans for his oyster project related photos.

An interactive exhibit, demonstrations on Shinnecock maritime traditions still carried on today will also be offered. Demonstrations will include wampum and other shell jewelry making and net making.

The exhibit will open with an invitation only preview reception on Friday, December 12—where we especially look forward to the succulent Shinnecock cultivated oyster hors d’oeuvres, as promised, for attendees to sample. (It has been announced that Shinnecock oysters are now available and for sale to the general public. For more information, including prices and placing orders, call (631) 283-6143, extension 10.)

“People of the Shore” will only be on view for the weekend, so be sure to catch this momentous event as there is be something in it for everyone.

On December 13 and 14, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day, the museum’s Winter Festival will feature a marketplace of distinctive Shinnecock and other indigenous made jewelry, beadwork, clothing and other handcrafted traditional and contemporary works of art.

Children ages 4 and up will be welcomed by a KidsZone, featuring face painting and crafts such as beading, painting shells and making holiday ornaments. In addition, Shinnecock’s own Santa Claus is set to visit and pose for photos.

In keeping with the traditional maritime theme, oysters on the half shell, homemade oyster stew, clam chowder, and other winter foods including samp, succotash, blueberry slump and fry bread will be on sale throughout.

The museum’s permanent exhibits—“A Walk with the People,” “My Spirit Dances Forever,” a canoe, a wikkiup and videos of Native American history—will also be on display.

Admission to the festival is free, but donations are welcome to help fund the museum’s educational programs, maintenance and development.

Call (631) 287-4923 or e-mail for more information.

The Shinnecock Nation Youth Council will host a dinner and a movie fund-raiser on Friday, December 12, at 6 p.m. at the Community Center.

The menu will include spaghetti topped with either red marinara or Shinnecock clam sauce, salad, garlic bread and dessert for the cost is $10 per plate. The evening’s feature film will be “Turquoise Rose.”

We would like to remind everyone not to wait until the last minute to pick out a Christmas tree, as the perfect one could be just around the corner at Stepping Stones Farmers Market—open daily from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Stop in and choose from a selection of 5-to-7-foot balsam firs and 7 to 8-foot Fraser firs. The market also offers wreaths ranging in size from 12 to 24 inches and small, medium and large poinsettias.

Other holiday items include Native holiday greeting cards and made-to-order gift baskets, homemade pies and fresh baked cookie and bread platters for those holiday get togethers.

Call (631) 283-3069 to place an order today.

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