FLORENCE — In the spirit of Oka Kapassa festival set for this weekend, the Florence Indian Mound Museum will host a storytelling event Thursday.

The one-hour event will begin at 6 p.m. and is free to the public.

It will feature guest Amy Bluemel, who will pay homage to her Chickasaw roots as she educates the audience through music, dance and storytelling.

“I think it’s going to be a great opportunity for us in this area to interact with the Chickasaw and with people who are sharing this culture on a national level,” said Brian Murphy, curator for the Florence Indian Mound Museum. “We’re very lucky.”

Bluemel has presented Chickasaw customs to a variety of audiences across the nation. Thursday, she will be joined by other Chickasaw people as they demonstrate traditional flute music and dances.

Bluemel, now a resident of Texas, grew up in a military family. Her experiences living in Germany, Okinawa, Turkey and Scotland nurtured a blossoming cultural awareness and appreciation. Later, she chose to return to her Native American roots in the United States.

She also performs with Chickashsha Hithla, a Native American dance troupe that tours nationwide.

The Oka Kapassa: Return to Coldwater festival is set for Friday and Saturday at Spring Park in Tuscumbia. The first day will be for schools, and the second will be open to the public.

“This is a great festival, and it’s a great opportunity for people of this area to interact with some of the tribes that had been removed in the past,” Murphy added. “We are thankful for the opportunity.”

—kendyl.hollingsworth@timesdaily.com or 256-740-5757. Follow on Twitter @TD_KendylH


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