WEEKEND: Neah Bay's Makah Museum fetes 35th anniversary with free activities today (Friday)
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Polly DeBari works on fishing-tackle pouch for the upcoming Makah Museum exhibit, which will open at 6 p.m. today.

Peninsula Daily News

NOTE: “Today” and “tonight” refer to Friday, June 6.

NEAH BAY — The Makah Museum will offer free admission and guided tours, an archaeological lecture and the first view of new replicas of tribal crafts when it celebrates its 35th anniversary today.

The museum at 1880 Bayview Ave. is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The usual fee is $5 for adults and $4 for students and seniors 65 or older.

Guided tours of the museum, which was opened in June 1979 to exhibit archaeological finds from the ancient Makah village of Ozette, also will be free.

They are scheduled for 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.

Ozette, south of Neah Bay, was one of five original Makah villages of which Neah Bay is the last left, said Kirk Wachendorf, museum interpretive specialist.

At almost a mile in length along the Pacific coast, Ozette was one of the biggest, if not the biggest, of the five villages, Wachendorf said.

A mudslide some 500 years ago buried six longhouses in the village.

Archaeologists uncovered hundreds of preserved artifacts during a dig from 1970 to 1981.

The dig was never completed, Wachendorf said.

One of the archaeologists who worked the site, Gary Wessen of Seattle, will give a presentation on a “Makah Paleoshoreline Study” at 5 p.m. today.

New exhibit of replicas

At 6 p.m., a new exhibit of replicas of historical Makah tools will be added to the museum's artifacts.

Those who created the replicas will put them in the whaling, sealing and fishing canoes on display at the museum.

During the winter, with funding assistance from the National Park Service's Tribal Heritage Preservation program, a team of artists created replicas of seal clubs, bailors, paddles, harpoon sheaths, fishing tackle bags and canoe nets.

These items will be exhibited on tables all day before their makers place them in the canoes, said Polly DeBari, program manager.

“Tribal people took classes to learn how to make them” during the project that began in December, DeBari said.

“We had young children to master weavers,” she said. “We learned a lot.

“We had some of the best weavers in town helping out,” she added.

“They did more of the helping than the weaving because they wanted to have other people learn.

“Some of the people who came, it was their first time.”

DeBari plans to display slides of the process of making the items.

On June 14, also in honor of the anniversary, Makah writers Victoria Parker, Zak Greene, Paul Parker, Rachel Parker, John Pritchard and Cindy Claplanhoo will read selected work at 1:30 p.m.

For more information, phone 360-645-2711, email makahmuseum@centurytel.net or visit www.makahmuseum.com.

Last modified: June 05. 2014 7:49PM
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