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The Bison: American Icon

Held over for an extra week:
September 1 – October 24, 2010

Few animals conjure the power and symbolic presence of the North American bison. Whether painted on a tipi or an artist’s canvas, minted on a nickel, or seen grazing in Yellowstone National Park, the image of the bison stirs in us deep loyalties to the North American landscape. Wild and fundamental, the bison is a familiar part of our shared heritage.

The Bison: American Icon explores the meaning and significance of this iconic creature from the Plains Indian culture of the 1800s through the era of commercial exploitation and the emergence of the bison as a national symbol today. Along the way, The Bison charts the dramatic changes that occurred to the creature and its habitat, and to the people who depended on it for their daily existence.

Plan Your Visit

The Bison exhibition is open during regular museum hours:

Tuesday-Friday 9:30-4:30, Saturday-Sunday 1:30-4:30, closed Labor Day

Special exhibition admission is included in regular museum prices:

$4.00 adults, $2.00 children 6-16, members free

Guided tours and special information:

Contact Andi Schmidt Andres 316.283.1612 or asa@bethelks.edu

Public Programs

Sept. 12, 3:30 pm   “To the Brink of Extinction: Telling the Bison Story at the C.M. Russell Museum” by exhibit curator Anne Morand, Curator of Art, National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, Oklahoma City, OK. Free Sunday-Afternoon-at-the-Museum.

Sept. 21  Bison and the Prairie Trail Scenic Byway bus tour. A visit to Maxwell Wildlife Refuge, Coronado Heights near Lindsborg, Kanapolis State Park and Mushroom Rock State Park to see bison up close and glimpse what the prairie was like when bison roamed freely, Native Americans waited for the huge herds and European explorers first ventured to the middle of the continent. A campfire buffalo meal at noon and supper at the Main Street Deli in McPherson are included in the fee: $85 for museum members and $100 for non-members. For more information contact Andi Schmidt Andres at asa@bethelks.edu or 316-283-1612.

Sept. 25, 2:00-4:00 pm  “Bison Bash”—a free community day with bison activities for all ages, guided gallery walk at 3:00 pm.

Sept. 30  Bison and the Prairie Trail Scenic Byway bus tour (repeat of Sept. 21 tour)

Oct. 3, 3:30 pm  “Four Men and a Bison: Design and Fabrication of a Traveling Exhibit” by Chuck Regier, Kauffman Museum, and Joel Gaeddert, Flint Hills Design. Free Sunday-Afternoon-at-the-Museum.

Oct. 9, 11:00 am  “Buffalo Bill and the Wildest Town in the West (Newton!?)” by Steve Friesen, Director, Buffalo Bill Museum and Grave, Golden, CO.

Oct. 9, 5:00-6:30 pm  Bison Barbecue, Bethel College Centennial Plaza. Limited seating. Advance tickets available from BC Thresher Bookstore.

The Bison: American Icon has been made possible by NEH on the Road, a special initiative of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The exhibit was originally developed by the C.M. Russell Museum in Great Falls, Montana, and co-curated by Anne Morand and Dr. Lynne Spriggs. This exhibit is toured by Mid-America Arts Alliance through NEH on the Road. The Bison was designed and fabricated by Kauffman Museum and Flint Hills Design, North Newton, Kansas.

316•283•1612   kauffman@bethelks.edu
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