2020 Moundville Native American Festival goes virtual

2020 Moundville Native American Festival goes virtual
The 2020 Moundville Native American Festival will be held online, with interactive experiences, livestreams and prerecorded videos. (University of Alabama)

The University of Alabama’s Moundville Archaeological Park will conduct the 32nd annual Moundville Native American Festival online Oct. 5-10.

While the festival will not be held in-person this year, park staff developed a virtual experience that will include Native American performers, demonstrators and living history teachers. Online content will teach and celebrate Native American culture through interactive experiences, livestreams and prerecorded videos.

An artist’s depiction of Moundville. The site near Tuscaloosa contains the remains of one of the largest prehistoric Native American settlements. (APT)

“I’m really excited to go virtual this year because I believe that we will be able to reach more people and encourage them to explore southeastern Native American heritage and culture,” said Lindsey Gordon, education outreach coordinator at Moundville Archaeological Park. “Even though we are going on the web, we will still have the same great performances and demonstrations as well as some new components, such as park-focused lectures and video series.”

Virtual visitors can enter various online portals that include dozens of experiences and activities. The performance portal will include stomp dancers, storytelling and hoop dancer extraordinaire Lyndon Alec. Demonstrators will teach traditional pottery firing, weaving, bead work and other crafts.

Vendors will sell traditional Native American items throughout the festival. Visitors can also purchase items from the park’s Knotted Bird gift shop, including a 2020 festival T-shirt.

The virtual festival will take place on the 2020 festival website. While some of the video content and livestreams will be free to the public, there will be exclusive content available only to ticketholders who purchase admission. General admission is $10.

Educators wanting to conduct a virtual field trip can pay $35 to access the exclusive educator’s portal. All content will be available from Oct. 5 through June 1, 2021. Educators can also purchase prepackaged materials for how-to videos for an additional $5 per student. These packages also come with materials that can be incorporated into lesson plans.

This story originally appeared on the University of Alabama’s website.

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