Moyers GEAR UP students explore the Museum of the Red River

Students from Moyers seventh and eighth grades recently explored The Museum of the Red River in Idabel. Leading their tour was Brian Hendershot, Head of Communications and Outreach.

The museum is home to over 30,000 cultural objects. The museum houses may object from around the world and displays them on a rotating basis in the museum.

The museum recently hosted their grand re-opening after several galleries had been closed due to an expansion of the building. The museum had reached its limits in storage and needed to make room for more displays of their many artifacts. A new gallery has been constructed for Oklahoma’s State Dinosaur, Acrocanthoasurus atokensis, as well as galleries to display many of the objects that have lived in storage for some time.

Currently, a highlight of the Museum is the Native American Cradles exhibit. The cradles on display are excellent examples of the variety of artistic beadwork and usage by the mother. The design of the cradles varies according to how they were carried; some were made to hang from horses’ saddles or trees while others were designed to be carried by hand or on the back. Many of them were passed from generation to generation and used by several children. The cradles were so well built and decorated that many of those on display, although more than a hundred years old, are in excellent condition.

Students also viewed objects up close that date back hundreds of years—some as far as 300 BC such as pottery, canoes, cloth, arrowheads, and baskets.

Following the tour, students participated in an art class and created pinch pots.

“The Museum of the Red River in Idabel is a wonderful asset to the area,” said GEAR UP Education Coordinator LaDonna Baldwin. “I look forward to taking our students there whenever I can.”

The field trip was sponsored by Eastern Oklahoma State College GEAR UP. Participating schools take two field trips each academic year-one to tour a college or university and one that is cultural/educational in nature. In 2017, Eastern received a $17 million federal GEAR UP grant that serves over 3,000 students in 39 area schools.

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