OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Hundreds of Oklahomans celebrated Indigenous Peoples Day at OKC’s First Americans Museum on Monday.
“This is the biggest day for us,” said Kennedy Sepulvado, the museum’s Communications Specialist. “This day is a good opportunity for people to come and learn… It’s really important for us to say we are still here, we are alive, we survived. We are the descendants of resilient people, and we have different communities, different cultures [and] different histories.”
Monday’s event recognized the diverse cultures and histories of Oklahoma’s 39 tribal nations and Indigenous communities.
It also educated guests about stereotypes the tribal nations and Indigenous communities face.
“We’re not what you see in the movies. We’re not these fairy tales,” said Cultural Ambassador Ace Greenwood. “We are here, we still have our culture. We still, you know, have our identity. You know, I think that’s really important for me to make sure that everybody knows.”
The celebration included stickball games, performances, panel discussions and food trucks, as well as the “soft opening” of the FAM’s Chef Garden.
“It’s a teaching garden as well as a kitchen garden. Everything here is edible or medicinal or both,” said Chef Loretta Barrett Oden. “It’s so exciting to have this here as a part of, you know, healthy eating and it’s very indicative of our traditions of first Americans food-wise.”
Barrett Oden told KFOR the garden includes corn, beans, squash, chili peppers and tomatoes.
The First Americans Museum is hosting another event on Friday, called “Books and BOOze.” Guests must be at least 21 years old to attend.