Create a one-a-kind “stocking stuffer” at the Museum of the Red River on December 9

Examples of native American beadwork Idabel, OK (November 29, 2017)—Native American artist Greg Bohanan will led a beading workshop at the Museum on December 9th, from 10 am to 3 pm. Participants will use the gourd stitch—a winding, brick-like pattern—to create a keychain. Christina Eastep, Acting Head of Programs, noted that “Mr. Bohanan has led many successful workshops…having such a talented artist lead this class is a blessing for us and those who learn from him.” The program costs $45 for nonmembers and $40 for members at the Contributor level or higher. All supplies are provided. Participants can register online or by calling (580) 286-3616.

Beadwork is one of the best-known forms of native American art. Prior to European contact, native Americans used natural materials like porcupine quills, shells or antlers to decorate their goods. The introduction of small glass beads in the late 1700s led to an explosion of new art. Over time, each tribe developed their own distinctive designs, colors, and styles. Many continued to use beads alongside traditional materials. Others created unique beading techniques known only to members of their tribe. There has been a renewed interest in beadwork in recent years.  Modern artists often borrow techniques from other tribes and incorporate them into their own work.


Museum holds annual Festival of Trees show

Idabel, OK (November 1, 2017)—The Museum of the Red River invites local businesses and civic organizations to celebrate Christmas and community involvement with Festival of Trees show. The festival will be open to the public November 27th to December 31st. Local schools, civic groups, businesses and other organizations can help turn the Museum into a winter wonderland by submitting their own tree to the festival. Entries will be accepted between November 20th and December 8th. Submissions will be judged on their creativity, aesthetics, and how well they represent their organization.

Contestants may submit a tree into one of the following categories—businesses, civic groups, schools, and professional decorators. Please note, the Festival of Trees will be on display in the Museum’s Jack Bell Hall. Therefore, each submission must adhere to the following rules:

  • Trees must be artificial and devoid of any “edible” or “living” decorations
  • Trees must be “family-friendly”
  • Trees must be under 8 feet tall
  • Trees may not use artificial snow or glitter

Contestants must submit a form with their tree. You can get a form in the Museum Store or by clicking here. Winners will receive recognition on a permanent plaque in the Museum and, most importantly, bragging rights. All trees must be taken down January 2nd through January 6th, during normal business hours.

The festival is an annual celebration of community involvement and Christmas. Christina Eastep, Acting Head of Programs, said, “our goal is to highlight the wonderful organizations and businesses that serve McCurtain County.” Local organizations are also key to the Museum’s continued success. Their support allows the Museum to provide free admission and educational programming at little to no cost to the public.


As culturas Amazônicas exhibit: October 17 – January 14

Amazon Exhibit, October 2017

Idabel, OK (October 18, 2017)—The Museum will showcase parts of its Amazon collection, one of the best in the United States, in its new exhibit, As culturas Amazônicas. The show contains over 100 objects from the Museum’s South American collection and represents 37 different groups. Additional objects were provided by Michael and Jeanne Bernstein of Tucson, Arizona.

The show will remain open until January 14, 2018. Admission to the exhibit—and the rest of the Museum—is free. However, parts of the Museum’s permanent exhibits, including Acrocanthosaurus atokensis are unavailable due to construction. (Acro is anticipated to return in late 2017/early 2018.)

In many ways, the Amazonian Basin is similar to the American frontier during the 19th century. The Basin, which contains the world’s largest rainforest, is experiencing unprecedented exploitation, settlement, and development.  Consequently, its indigenous people are losing their land and their resources. Unsurprisingly, it has becoming increasingly difficult for people to maintain their traditional culture.

However, some groups have managed to maintain their cultural identity by promoting—and often selling—traditional art. Their art remains linked to their ceremonies, myths, and traditional way of life. By selling their art, they ensure that the culture of the Amazon will endure, while gaining some measure of independence. The objects on display at the Museum were primarily purchased from those artists during the last 40 years.


Former SOSU Director of Art to led painting class at the Museum of the Red River

Idabel, OK (October 13, 2017)—Dr. Gleny Beach, a former Director of Art at Southeastern Oklahoma State University, will led painting class at the Museum on October 21, from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm. Participants will learn how to paint their favorite fall landscape. (Please bring a photo.) Cost is $45 or $40 for members at the Contributor level or higher. No experience necessary. All materials are provided. Call (580) 286 – 3616 or visit the Museum Store to register. Registration is also available online at

Dr. Beach is a commercially successful artist and teacher, with over two decades of experience at SOSU alone. Her recent accomplishments include a 2009 Governor’s Arts Award and membership to the 2010 People to People Citizen Ambassador Program. Dr. Beach has also judged several art competitions in recent years, including the Museum of the Red River’s 2017 Expressions of Youth contest.


Scroll to Top