Saturday, July 20, 2024

American Indian Artists and Indigenous Market Vendors

About our event: April 5th -set-up

Event April 6th & 7th, 2024

Click here to sign up as a Vendor for IIAC 2024

American Indian and Indigenous Artist Sign-up

The 17th annual IIAmericas Celebration (IIAC pronounced eye-ak) is sponsored by the Intertribal nonprofit organization Indigenous Institute of America. The IIAC event supports our efforts to provide relevant and accurate experiences that educate and demystify the many cultures of the first stewards of the land we now call the Americas. Our activities and philosophy are welcoming to both Native and Non-Native patrons. We see this event as an opportunity to engage the public with our love for art, environment, music, dance, food, laughter, and relationships. 

Parking and Admission

Free admission and Parking.

Vendors will be able to access their booth by walking and by car. You can drive up and unload once the Artist Liaison assigns your booth space. (see loading and unloading instructions) You will park your vehicles within a short walk of your booth.

We hope this does not happen, but should you need to leave during the event, be extra cautious when driving out. This venue is a child’s paradise to run and play. Stumps and large rocks can cause damage to your car, so be careful backing in and out of the parking area.  *IIA and Venue are not responsible for any damage to your equipment or vehicle.

Venue

Our venue, Chisholm Trail Outdoor Museum (CTOM), 101 Chisholm Trail, Cleburne, TX 76033, is 30 miles south of Ft. Worth, Texas. Chisholm Trail.

Amenities include:

*CTOM is a beautiful outdoor venue on 10 acres of beautiful natural trees, water, and wildlife. 

*Portable toilets, women’s and men’s indoor toilets with three stalls 

*Hand washing and refilling water bottles

*Vendors’ vehicles can pull up directly to booths for unloading and loading. 

*Parking near the Artist Vendor areas. 

*Powwow grounds enhanced with sand

*Tent camping and RV camping are available with registration (Contact Carrie Reynolds at carriereynolds8@yahoo.com phone: 254-998-0261)

*Day passes for showers at Cleburne State Park Cleburne State Park, 5800 Park Rd 21, Cleburne, TX 76033, only 10 miles from our venue, can be purchased starting 30 days before the weekend of our event ($6 per adult). Register at this link:  Texas State Parks (reserveamerica.com) https://texasstateparks.reserveamerica.com/unifSearchResults.do

*Venue access directly from the Highway 67

*Venue allows outside food and drink, so save money and bring your cooler. (Of course, no alcohol allowed)

*Pets are allowed at the venue. See more information below.   

*Beautiful overlook of the lake and bird-watching

  *Powwow grounds

*Outdoor Stage

*Indoor Pavilion

*Buildings from the 1800s include a jail, schoolhouse, and mule barn. Blacksmithing workshop, Big Bear Museum (Civil War and Texas Rangers Museum will be closed during our event). No reenactments are permitted, but the town Sheriff may be in period costume. 

We are on Sacred Land

The 10 acres are located on the buffalo trails of north Texas; the area is known to the Kiowa as “ahn daw gaw been’, “where the prairie meets the big trees. Thank you, Michael Tongkeamha, for this teaching. This is considered the Eastern Cross Timbers, one of the last old forests in the United States. It is a marker, a meridian that guarded these lands. The forest was a very harsh area for people traveling from the east coast to the west. The Spaniards called it the Devil’s Forest and others have called it the “cast iron” forest. The oak trees were so dense they would break knives trying to cut through a trail. Native people who traveled from California to Texas recognized the 97th meridian as a natural boundary.

The Big Bear Museum is on the property, and a new addition may be completed by April. The Big Bear Museum is a separate but cooperative organization with the property. Museum entrance fees are $5 for adults and $2 for children. The artifacts in the Museum have been directly donated by Native families who have requested the museum care for the safety of their items. 

Near the food course is the Star Pavilion; IIA volunteer headquarters will be in front of the building. The IIA Seed Ambassador Program educational displays and seminars will be in the Pavilion; we hope you will have time to drop in and see the work we are doing year-round to preserve our cultural knowledge. 

An old school house will have Traditional storytelling and workshops throughout the day.

We are on the southwest side of the Lake Pat Cleburne bridge from Cleburne, Texas. Most of the land is Federally protected wetlands. We cherish this sacred area as it is a bird-watching paradise, home to nesting Bald Eagles, Great Blue Heron cranes, and other unique plants and wildlife. We hope our Vendors and Patrons will help us keep this land clean throughout the event.

Happy News!

*FREE Parking and FREE admission for the public and Vendors. No more wristbands and waiting at the gate. More money to spend at your booth!

Our Vice-President and new Indigenous Social Media Director and Community Engagement Specialist, Tanya Bond, will do live Facebook events and engage patrons. She is so excited to get started in this new role. You will hear from her before the event to introduce herself. During the event, and with your permission, your booth will be on our social media. If our Facebook followers miss the event, you can get visibility at your next event.

We know artists all have their own protocols for protecting the integrity of their art. Please let Tanya know your personal “does and don’ts” before she does an interview. For example, video and photographs of your work. Write a paragraph about yourself that you can send her before the event or show her when she drops by your booth that weekend.  

*Students from Texas Christian University and other Universities will be helping this year. Some students will be from our Native American Organizations, and some will learn about our culture through volunteerism. Please ask for help and feel free to educate in a welcoming way. If you need to run to the restroom break or need a water bottle refilled, we want to help. 

Weather-related questions

There is never a need to call us and ask if we are holding the event. Our event is rain or shine. We have only canceled an event due to Covid-19.

Our event has been blessed with 17 years of great weather (We knock on wood after saying this). In fact, the last two years were warm and sunny. We will warn you that Texas has unpredictable weather forecasts every year before our event. We have learned to avoid looking at the Weather forecasts (in fact, the chairperson for this event, Annette Anderson, won’t let the volunteers tell her the forecast) starting 2 weeks before the event because we have seen it influence people’s attendance even with a tiny % forecast for rain. We have several buildings on-site which provide severe weather protection. 

Here are the statistics.

Since 1999, the average temperature in Cleburne on April 6 was 54 to 71 degrees. The lowest temperature recorded was 45 at 6:30am, and the highest was 80 degrees at 4pm. There has been “0” ZERO precipitation on April 6 or 7th since 2018, so those are helpful numbers. We always welcome whatever the Creator brings us. If it rains, it’s a blessing; if it does not, it can also be a blessing. Rain is a precious thing for the plains of Texas. 

The Museum also has a fantastic relationship with the county sheriff’s office, so we will be the first to receive any notices of actual weather concerns. Should we receive rain blessings, artists with paintings and other items needing moisture protection can move them into the Headquarters Pavillion for safety.

Shopping 

Everything you find in a big town is in Cleburne, Texas. Nationally recognized restaurant chains as well as locally owned yummy choices. We love buying groceries from H-E-B located at 600 W HENDERSON CLEBURNE, TX 76033-4830; they have been a generous sponsor to the Museum and our organization. Other needs you may have for equipment and tools are available at Harbor Freight located at 1663 W Henderson St Suite 4, Cleburne, TX 76033.

Ladies, we have a favorite Western cliche boutique to recommend. Christi’s will have something to compliment the jewelry you design. Christi’s https://www.facebook.com/shopchristis/ 1663 W Henderson St Cleburne, TX 76033

Pet guidelines

 Animals must stay on short leashes. Please register your animal with Carrie Reynolds through the venue carriereynolds8@yahoo.com. A picture would also be nice so we can recognize your loved one if they get off the leash somehow. A new “poop” station will have free poop disposal bags. The green building is located next to the mule barn. Our event will charge a $50 fine to anyone not immediately cleaning up after their animal.

We also ask that dogs not be allowed near the powwow grounds as a cultural protocol.

Solar eclipse and lodging

On the Monday after our event (April 8), the Universe decided to bring a total solar eclipse to Cleburne, TX. The impact on our powwow and cultural event will be overwhelming. People across the Nation have reserved hotel rooms in anticipation of the eclipse, and our event is one of the only fun opportunities before the eclipse. Our attendance could easily double or triple. Hotels are filling up fast! The Museum is planning a “watch event,” and vendors are welcome to vend on Monday; please let Carrie Reynolds at carriereynolds8@yahoo.com and aliciaccrook@gmail.com know if you would like to stay an extra day for free. 

Hotels

Cleburne Chamber of Commerce has a list of hotels. If Cleburne hotels are full, there are many towns within a 30-minute drive of our venue. If arriving from Oklahoma City, west Texas, New Mexico, or Arizona, you can find hotels in Cresson, Burleson, Godley, and Glenrose. If you come from east Texas and eastern Oklahoma, consider Keene, Joshua, Alvarado, Midlothian, or Mansfield, Texas. This link will take you to the Cleburne Chamber of Commerce hotels.
Also, please let the hotels know you are coming for this event and let us know where you are staying. We will send flyers to that hotel to drum up more business. It’s an excellent way to help us spread the news.

State Park Camping and Day Pass for Showers

The Cleburne State Park (Cleburne State Park, 5800 Park Rd 21, Cleburne, TX 76033) is up the road (10 miles) if you are camping or staying in an RV. You can purchase a day pass for showers one month before the event. The cost is $6 per day. https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/reservations/

On-site Camping

Our venue also has plenty of camping available for a reasonable charge of $25 per tent. You must register for camping on the Chisholm Trail Outdoor Museum property so we know who is staying at night. Email Carrie Reynolds at carriereynolds8@yahoo.com to register for camping. Vehicles associated with campers that are not registered will be towed at the owner’s expense.

Because of the eclipse, the Museum is also inviting vendors to stay Sunday night to attend the watch party on Monday for the eclipse. Artist vendors may also stay and do vending through Monday. Some volunteers from IIA will remain on site the whole weekend to save money and gas and watch our equipment.

The Museum gates will be open throughout the night, and the sheriff’s department and other security groups will drive through the camp to check on us. It is beautiful at night, with twinkle lights everywhere.

Are you new to our event?

The IIAC is known for its variety of activities and attractions. We bring the public a different view of the diversity of our many cultures. Some of our guest performers have said they have traveled the powwow trail, been all over the country, and have never seen so many creative fun happenings at this event. We like to do things outside the box, so some of our contests are for fun, and some are serious. We want to dispel stereotypes through our humor in our culture. 

What makes us different?

We aren’t just a powwow; we aren’t just an art market. We have it all: food, arts, crafts, songs, seminars, displays, games, powwows, demonstrations, archery, stickball, and children’s activities. Our organization tries to stay focused on authentic and accurate representations of culture. For example, our powwow MC explains what is happening on the grounds, i.e., an educational powwow. Our displays have handouts to take home and share with others. Children attending the event will have a wonderful time learning about sunflower seeds and their importance in our culture through the Seed Ambassador Program. 

Young people are included in our leadership roles. We want to help the next generation feel comfortable planning events and learning cultural protocols. We hope you will bring your children too. We know it’s hard to leave the children and grandchildren at home. This is a safe but authentic outdoor venue; everyone is encouraged to dress appropriately and wear sturdy tennis or hiking shoes.

Our volunteers do their best to make everyone of all ages and all cultures feel welcome. We want the patrons to stay all day and leave our event with a joyful experience. Please share this information with your friends and organizations. Feel free to advertise other organizations and markets you may be attending. We like our patrons to get “hooked” on our art and culture. 

Our event has become an enormous family reunion. We have so many friends and partners that our event schedule changes constantly before the event. The talent in our Native communities allows us to try new ideas every year. Gourd dance, educational powwow, dance demonstrations and workshops, yummy powwow food, archery, survival skills, stickball, silly contests, serious contests, performances, and more. 

What to Expect as a Vendor

Artists should plan on bringing their canopies, tables, and chairs. IIAC has terrific food vendors, but you can also bring outside food and drinks (no alcohol). We want you to feel comfortable, so a cooler and ice might be helpful. It has been warm the last few years, so bring a refillable water bottle; the property has several faucets. Sometimes, it gets windy, so we recommend dropping your canopy down a little at night using sandbags (plenty of sand at our powwow grounds) or weights. We recommend comfortable shoes as this outdoor event with very little concrete. We don’t want your feet to hurt at the end of the day. 

New this year: Evening Art Market

This year we will have a night market on Saturday from 6 pm to 8 pm. All the noisy and distracting activities will stop, and the artists will be the main focus of the evening. We plan to have a children’s movie night so parents can shop and the kids can sit on blankets and watch an outdoor movie. The venue has more beautiful nighttime lighting, but we suggest you bring some battery-powered lights for the night market to give you more visibility. Sundown will be at 8 pm, so there should be plenty of light for buying, but it will get dark quickly, so you might want lights to wrap up your displays. Our organization uses these AAA battery lights when vending outdoors at night.

Practical Ideas for Outdoor Vending

This year we will have a night market on Saturday from 6 pm to 8 pm. All the noisy and distracting activities will stop, and the artists will be the main focus of the evening. We plan to have a children’s movie night so parents can shop and the kids can sit on blankets and watch a show. The venue has more beautiful nighttime lighting, but we suggest you bring some battery-powered lights for the night market to give you more visibility. Our organization uses these AAA battery lights when vending outdoors at night.

You can leave your items at the venue each night (what you are comfortable leaving). If it gets windy at night, we recommend dropping down the canopy halfway and ensuring it is staked down for the night. We have also found that cheap painters’ plastic drop cloths or plastic tablecloths are good to cover your tables and chairs overnight to keep off the morning dew. Be sure to weigh them down with rocks or other methods. Extra batteries for your lighting and battery packs for your cell phone. We have wifi available, so your online sales will be easy. There may be a small charge of $15.00 if you need electricity. Please let us know your needs on your application. We request you bring your outdoor electrical cords. Most of our outlets are 15 amps. You may not be right next to the outlet, so consider getting longer extension cords. Generators must be quiet if you are near the performance area. We want to be considerate of our drum and dancers. We have also found using wagons or carts will help with walking back and forth across the grounds.

Your Booth Assignment

Please be considerate regarding your vendor location. If you have been a vendor with us before, let Alicia Crook know on your application if you want the same spot from last year. We visited the Museum recently, and the property has been improved. Some of the improvements will cause a shift in booth locations in a few areas; Alicia will be able to tell you if there has been an impact on your booth. 

You can text the Artist Liaison, Alicia Crook, on Thursday, April 4, or Friday, April 5, with your estimated arrival time for Friday’s set-up at 214-406-3432. Please remember to tell Alicia your name from the vendor application so she knows who is texting. We will email all the vendors a map of the venue and the Vendor booth check-in location for you to refer to when you arrive. After receiving your area, a volunteer will help you navigate to your location. 

We ask that everyone be kind and patient as Alicia and her Crew assign locations. Her job is complex; she looks young but has almost 7 years of experience. Your location is based on attendance from previous years, electricity needs, booth size, the order of registration, and the type of items you will be selling. An outdoor event takes creativity when assigning spots. Each year, we have to redo our maps based on the trees, new buildings, improvements on the property, and the location of performances. This can make your usual location unavailable; Alicia will inform you of any significant changes. 

Set-up 

We know how hard it is to set up canopies quickly, so we hope you will accept our invitation to come to town and start setting up on Friday, April 5, between noon and 7 pm.

If you are arriving on Saturday, April 6, please plan on a set-up window between 6:30 am and 8 am. Text Alicia on Friday evening to find out where you will be located. Once you have your booth number, you can come on the grounds and look for the bucket with that number. Please only move your location with full permission from Alicia Crook. No other volunteers can give that permission. 

We need all vendors’ cars in their parking spots (see map below) by 8 am on Saturday and 9 am on Sunday; we want to avoid safety problems. If you have any issues and need more time to unload, please let us know so we can help you get your car parked and booth unloaded. 

Parking

Vendors will have priority for the closest Parking. Area 1 is located on the land between the highway and where the metal steer display runs parallel to the Chisholm Trail road. Area 2 is on both sides of Chisholm Trail Road, where handicap parking signs are located. Parking should be diagonal to allow room on either side of the road. Area 3 is on the powwow grounds toward the outer edge of the land near the lake. We, of course, want to give priority to our handicap vendors and those with mobility issues. Also, let us know if you need a booth near one of the restrooms.

Takedown -Sunday

Our event ends on Sunday, April 7, at 4 pm; we ask that you wait until 4 pm to bring your car to your booth for loading. We have a three-hour window for takedown between 4 pm and 7 pm. Please let us know if you need more time to leave by 7 pm. We want you safe driving home. If you are sleepy and need to nap, eat, or rehydrate, please let us know what is happening.   We hope our Vendors and Patrons will help us keep this land clean throughout the event.

Solar Eclipse Event

If you are staying for the solar eclipse event on Monday, ignore the Sunday departure instructions.  

We realize that every Nation has its beliefs and protocols regarding lunar and solar eclipses. We plan to discuss and educate the staff at CTOM about some of these issues. Still, we want you to know we have no say in the activities scheduled for Monday the 8th and do not accept any responsibility should the activities appear culturally inappropriate or insensitive. Vendors need to do business best for them and their commitments and comfort level.   

After 7 pm on Sunday, Carrie Reynolds will be your point of contact. You must let Carrie know you are officially staying for the Eclipse event. Carrie Reynolds is the Executive Director of the CTOM property and organizer of the Eclipse event; her phone number is 254-998-0261. We will only have a skeleton crew of volunteers after 7 pm. Our crew are all volunteers who run on adrenaline, water, and electrolyte supplements to survive this event; most must drive another hour to get home and be ready for work on Monday. You can imagine how exhausted we will be, so help us plan your needs as early as possible.

Vendor Categories in our Art Market

American Indian Artist category:

Will comply with the Indian Arts and Crafts Act through documentation of their Tribal enrollment. The IIA committee focuses on educational initiatives to explain compliance with the Act, its history, importance, and impact on preserving traditional and contemporary art. 

This is a legal definition, so artisans at our event must not represent their art as American Indian or Native American-made unless they comply with this law. We are not a political organization, but we want all our vendors to understand that we are fully aware of the issues related to the impact of Colonization on our people, especially in Texas. We have added the Indigenous Market Place category to address our concerns. 

The Indigenous Market Place category:

Will also identify their tribal affiliations and provide information about the geography and culture of their tribes. Items for sale must represent the vendors’ or the family/tribe’s craftwork. 

This category would also be appropriate for vendors who sell products such as Traditional medicines, soaps, plants, teas, foods, regalia, fabric, basketry, beading supplies, or other items unique to their traditional homelands.

Our overall goal is to honor the American Indian/Native Tribes from the North Pole to the South Pole and maintain the cultural event’s spirit and integrity. A note to remind vendors that they can only sell mass-produced items if they have cultural significance and only if it is 1/4 or less of your merchandise. This art market is directed at artists who make one-of-a-kind, hand-made, or hand-crafted, culturally appropriate, and significant items.  

Artist Booth review

IIA committee representatives reserve the right to review what is being sold at our event. If you are asked to remove any item from sales, we apologize, but that is why we ask artists to send us pictures that reflect what you will be selling at the event. Any concerns will be presented through our Artist Liaison, Alicia Cook. Please respect any suggestions or feedback made by Alicia because it may be through the eyes of the elders who have talked to her, not necessarily her interpretation of a concern.

Confirming your Reservation

Your booth will be confirmed when we receive the following information and review your booth reservation as an American Indian Artist or Indigenous Market Place Vendor for 2024.

1. Completed Application. Payment is March 25th. If you must cancel, we will roll over your reservation fee to our next annual event. We can not prorate your payment if you must leave the event early. Your vendor fees are critical to the organization’s ability to provide a quality event.

2. For American Indian Artists, provide a copy of your official enrollment documentation in a Federal or State recognized Tribe or Certification as an Indian artisan. American Indian artists are welcome to bring contemporary and traditional arts and crafts that reflect our culture. In addition, we want your booth to reflect your unique craftsmanship and/or a family member you represent. 

3. For Indigenous Market Vendors, provide information about your family Tribal affiliations and include helpful information for our committee about the traditional homelands and unique culture of your Tribe. Our event and organization focus on education; we hope the market can be that opportunity.  

4. Description of original work that reflects what you will sell at the event. Please send 2 or 3 recent pictures (with descriptions) of your work that we can post online to promote you. These can be sent as JPG, PNG, or PDF.

IIAC Event Volunteers

Please remember that everyone working at our event is a volunteer of the organization or a volunteer of the Museum. Please give us grace and consideration if we make mistakes or are struggling. Any problems or concerns can always be brought to your liaison, Alicia Crook. She will know who to involve if something needs to be fixed or addressed. Some of our volunteers, even with training, will need to learn or understand our cultural lifeways and protocols, so try to approach any concerns with the mindset of education and share what is happening with our committee so we can address concerns for you. Please make sure to tell us about problems as soon as possible. We cannot change a problem if we find out 6 months after the event. Your concerns and observations are valuable and can help us do a better job next year, even if we cannot fix the problem this year.  

 Need more information on the Indian Arts and Crafts Act?

Email us at iiamericas.org@gmail.com

or contact Alicia Crook – Artist Liaison, at 214-406-3432 or the organization phone # 469-626-8099.