City Week

Digging Archaeology

The Amerind Foundation's 75th Anniversary

9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 21

The Amerind Foundation
2100 N. Amerind Road, Dragoon

(520) 586-3666, ext. 11

The Amerind Foundation has been dedicated to the study of Native American cultures since 1937, and is celebrating its 75th anniversary with lectures, dancing, storytelling and crafts.

"It's going to be fun, educational and great for the whole family," said Becky Rebenstorf, Amerind's development director.

The founders, Rose and William Shirley Fulton, purchased 1,200 acres in the Texas Canyon area east of Tucson, not only for their home, but also as a hub for education and research.

Merritt Starkweather, the architect responsible for the iconic Arizona Inn, designed the campus. "It's beautiful, and it reflects sort of a refined way of living merged with a center where people would come and study," Rebenstorf said.

Though William Fulton was not an archaeologist, his deep pockets funded many early archaeological excavations, such as Casas Grandes in northern Chihuahua, Mexico.

Executive director John Ware will start the celebration by elaborating on the early days of the foundation. Much of the event will be devoted to demonstrations of Native American dancing, singing, art and storytelling.

The Fulton-Hayden Memorial Art Gallery and Fulton Seminar House will be open to the public. The latter is usually designated for researchers and scholars who visit Amerind to use the foundation's library and write in peace and seclusion, Rebenstorf said.

If attendees aren't inspired by the wisdom hidden away in the rare volumes, there is always the magic of Texas Canyon's stunning rock formations.

"The views are amazing," Rebenstorf said.

The Amerind Foundation is about an hour's drive east of Tucson off Interstate 10. Take the Dragoon Road exit. The event is free. Parking is $2 per car. —M.D.

Through a Lens, Darkly

"From the Field to the Archive: Nicaragua to Kurdistan," a lecture by Susan Meiselas

5:30 p.m., next Thursday, Oct. 25

UA Center for Creative Photography, Room 108
1030 N. Olive Road


Susan Meiselas broke into the world of documentary photography by snapping countless photos of scantily-dressed women under neon lighting for her book Carnival Strippers.

Since the 1970s, her work has crossed social and geographical boundaries. Meiselas' lecture at the UA won't feature much neon lighting or nudity, but will instead focus on her international work in areas of conflict.

In Nicaragua, her photos offer a first-person account of a people's uprising in the 1980s. Then she returned years later to track down her subjects.

The other part of the presentation will involve her portrayal of the genocide and exile of the Kurdish people of Iraq under the reign of Saddam Hussein. In order to tell their story, she collected firsthand accounts, documents and other items to create a public archive.

Meiselas' presentation is part of the UA School of Art's Visiting Artists and Scholars Series, this year dubbed "Dwelling: From Space to Place in the Visual Arts." The theme is meant to reflect the political upheavals, financial crises and growing number of refugees around the world, and how art connects with them, said Ellen McMahon, a UA art professor and chairwoman of the committee in charge of inviting the speakers.

Lectures in previous years have focused on science, sustainability and history.

"It's part of our mission to bring excellent artists and scholars from various backgrounds to Tucson," McMahon said. "It's a great opportunity to see ... socially and politically relevant contemporary and cutting-edge work."

After her lecture, Meiselas will take questions from the audience. The event is free. —M.D.

Deep Thoughts ... or Not

My Heart Is an Idiot: FOUND Magazine's 10th Anniversary Tour

7:30 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 20
Hotel Congress
311 E. Congress St.

2 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 21
Joel D. Valdez Main Library
101 N. Stone Ave.

Random letters, notes or photos found in strange places need not be discarded. The creators of FOUND Magazine make a living out of them: For a decade, they have been exposing everything from uncomfortable secrets to letters to God written by people they have never met.

Davy Rothbart, writer and co-creator of FOUND, is coming to the Old Pueblo as part of the magazine's 10th anniversary tour. Rothbart also is promoting his new book, My Heart Is an Idiot, a collection of personal essays on Rothbart's love life and his encounters with odd characters on the road.

"Everything is based on my experiences meeting different people while traveling the country," Rothbart said. "It took about three years to put it all together."

With FOUND, Rothbart made a name for himself by publishing intimate letters and silly notes found and sent in by people from around the world.

During the presentation, Rothbart will share new finds from the magazine's eighth edition. Rothbart's musician brother, Peter, will join him onstage with melodies from his new album, You Are What You Dream.

"The songs in the album also revolve around 'founds' that people have seen in the magazine," Rothbart said. "They are all over the place. There's a song based on a letter to God, found in Hawaii, written by a woman who had just had her second miscarriage. But then there is also a song that goes, 'The booty don't stop,' over and over again."

Rothbart will also talk about his contributions to public radio's This American Life.

Admission to the Saturday show is $6 in advance, or $8 at the door. Admission to the Sunday show is free. —I.T.

Fame for the Whole Family

BollyKids FAME Family Arts and Music Experience

11 a.m., Sunday, Oct. 21

Children's Museum Tucson
200 S. Sixth Ave.


Kids and families looking for a day at the circus combined with the culture of India should look no further than FAME.

Neelam Sethi created Bollywood at the Fox in 2006 as a way to bring her native culture to the historic theater she adored. In 2011, she and her husband decided to create an event that children and families could enjoy together, so FAME was born.

"We wanted a day when children can be children," Sethi said.

Children will be able to dress up in traditional Indian garb; wear bindis, the popular forehead decorations; and get henna tattoos. There will be performances throughout the day featuring dancers and Children Carrying the Sound, a youth musical group.

The grand finale is a show from Tucson's Cirque Roots. Throughout the day, kids will get a chance to practice their own circus skills, like juggling, hula-hooping and acro-yoga.

Dr. Gulshan Sethi, a cardiothoracic surgeon at the University of Arizona Medical Center, took a clown class so he could entertain at FAME.

"He uses his hands to heal the heart, but for the children at the Children's Museum, he uses his hands to make balloon animals," Neelam Sethi said.

If you work up an appetite clowning around, traditional Indian samosas, a quesadilla bar, fresh fruit and ice cream will be provided.

"These days, the world is getting small," Neelam Sethi said. "We are becoming global citizens and interacting with every country in the world. Children need to be aware of different cultures and customs."

The event is free. —M.D.

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