Northern Woodland Villages

Traditions That Sustain Us


Stop by the Northern  Woodland Villages and visit our unique and distinctive styles as volunteers demonstrate their abilities and artistic flair when it comes to excellence and brilliant hand crafted native American made products.


The Northern Woodland Villages is sponsored in part by the Indian Community School who will have an exhibit, “Indian Community School Student Exhibits & Native Roots in Sports” in the area.


Come learn about the tribes of Wisconsin through the eyes of ICS students who researched their tribal nations and built exhibits to represent what they learned. Did you know that fourth grade ICS students successfully petitioned the City of Milwaukee to change Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day? Come see how they accomplished this and celebrate with us!  You can also learn how many of the most popular sports today owe their origins to our Native ancestors and see how this knowledge is being taught at our School.


A woodland style wigwam will be constructed and can be viewed throughout the entire weekend that has been donated by a Menominee Tribal member. We ask that Indian Summer Festival visitors please refrain from touching any of the traditional works of the volunteers.


Traditional pieces, stories and demonstrations  from various Northern Woodland Tribes includes Menominee, Stockbridge Munsee Band of Mohican Indians, Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians, Oneida Indian Tribe of Wisconsin, native youth from the Indian Community School of Milwaukee student artwork,


Traditional woodworking crafts

Come experience the spectacular crafts and ideas as put forth by a tribal member, Namuteah’saeh whose dynamic styles include contemporary as well as traditional pieces of art work.

Materials and demonstration pieces derive from the ancient and prehistoric forests of the Menominee people and this tradition continues today in these talented showcases.


Native American Handcrafted regalia demonstrations

Native American hairpieces and regalia making is available for questioning and answers to the general public and explained by a female artist Margo Denny-Shawanokasic whose family comes from a long line traditional peoples and fluent language speakers. Designs and ideas are unique and are carefully crafted in a style that represents culture, tradition and woodland character and Patterns


Hand drumming and singing

Hand drumming and singing will be displayed by a young Menominee boy, Bobby Lee Khomanekin who was raised in the forests and land of the Menominee people. He incorporates in to his music the traditional sounds that have been present for many years past and handed down from family members and elders of the community.


Traditional Crafts

Witness the designs and creations of proto type crafts that include birch bark canoes, wigwams, teepees and other spectacular ideas as presented by a young Native American male, Robert Rappley  who continues to practice these unique and distinctive characteristics. Materials used for these products derive sole from the Northern Woodlands resources and offerings are made to Mother Earth as the handmade crafts are creatively designed.


Basket Weaving

As demonstrated by Yunuhsanunha (She keeps house) who from the Bear Clan prepares and works on her traditional style methods of basket making. She continues to work in her community as well as join organizations that enhance her knowledge of both the traditional and teachings that were handed down to her.


Medicinal herbs and Teas

Demonstrations by a tribal member, who works with medicines and teas for good health and well being. She will explain the reasons why she practices this process and will answer questions for the general public accompanied by traditional dancers


Traditional style beadwork

Handmade and demonstrated by Theresa Rauworth – Ojibwe style designs and unique flavors are included with this tribal member showcase demonstrations. Learn and hear of the styles as she proudly displays some of her work for the general public to view.


Firemaking with Bow Drill

Demonstrated by Jeff Rauworth – fire starting with a bow drill and the importance of these traditional values.


Exibits and museums


  • Historic museum exhibits and pieces by Ziibiwing Center of the Anishinabe Culture and lifeways, Saginaw Chippewa Tribe
  • Southeastern Oneida Tribal Services historic traveling museum showcases which includes cultural components, hands on displays, replica long house, (3 sisters) corn, beans , and squash, lacrosse material, animal tanned hides


Stockbridge Munsee Band of Mohican Indians (People of the Waters that are never still) Arvid E. Miller Memorial Library Museum which includes historic stories that include the travels of the tribes journey as well as modern day stories.


Northern Woodland Village I Grassy Area   PERFORMANCES/PARTICIPATION AREA


FRIDAY, September 7

4:00  – 5:00      Duck/Fish/Swan Dances

5:30 – 6:30         Fire Making with bow drill

7:00 – 8:00       Storytelling-Iroquois Clans


SATURDAY, September 8

12:15 – 1:00       Iroquois Social Dances

1:15 – 2:00         Indian Community School Traditional Arts and Craftswithdemonstrations

2:15 –  3:15         Duck/Fish/Swan Dances

3:30 – 4:15         Arvid E Miller Library historic Museum and displays

4:30 – 5:30        Fire Making using a Bow Drill

Clan Presentation w Q & A @ Clan Exhibit

6:00 – 7:00        Moccasin Game

7:15  – 8:00        Clan Game


SUNDAY, September 9

11:00  – noon     Iroquois Social Dancing

12:30  – 1:30      Fire making using a bow drill

Clan Presentation w Q & A @ Exhibit

2:00  – 3:00       Duck/Fish/Swan Dances

3:30  – 4:30        Storytelling-Iroquois Clans

5:00 – 6:00         Moccasin Game

6:30 – 8:00         Round Dance


Northern Woodland Village II Lakeside

Wigwam will be constructed in the front of Village II and will be on display all weekend along with a traditional fire.  Smudging available upon request by staff all weekend.


Friday September 7, 2018

4:00  – 5:30       Sweet Grass Basket making

5:30  – 7:00       Traditional woodland style beadwork designs and demonstrations

7:00  – 8:00       Hand drum song, Traditional Fire, Smudging, language demonstrations


Saturday September 8, 2018

12:30 – 2:00    Sweet grass basket making and demonstrating

2:00  – 3:30     Native American traditional woodland style wood crafting

3:30  – 5:00     Native American jewelry making and demonstrations

5:00  – 6:30     Black Ash basket making and demonstrations

6:30  – 8:00     Hand drumming songs, Traditional smudging, story sharing

8:00  – 9:30     Northern Woodland style demos of cultures past. Prototype canoes, wigwams, etc.


Sunday September 9. 2018  

11:00 – 12:00   Traditional fire, smudging practices, talking circle

12:00 – 1:00     Sweet grass basket demonstrations

1:00 – 2:00       Traditional Woodland style hand crafted models of items used by tribes (canoes, wigwams, daily living needed items)

2:00 – 3:00      Traditional Black Ash basket making styles demonstrations and Q&A period

3:00 – 4:00      Native American traditional Northern style wood crafting demonstrations

4:00 – 5:00      Hand drumming, Traditional Fire, Story Sharing Language demonstrations

5:00 – 6:00      Traditional Fire, smudging, story sharing, talking circle

6:00 – 7:00      Native American jewelry making demonstrations