Unci Maka (GrandMother Earth) Public Market Returns July 25

Release Date: 



Veronica Erenberg, veronicae@cfra.org, Phone: (267) 679-1251
Elisha Smith, elishas@cfra.org, Phone: (402) 687-2100

Lyons, NE - The Santee Unci Maka (GrandMother Earth) Public Market will return on July 25 at the Ohiya Casino and Resort from 11:00 a.m to 4:00 p.m.  The market will be held every Saturday from August through October.

Along with fresh, locally grown produce (grown right in Santee), much more will be available. You'll find fresh baked goods including Amish goods, Indian tacos and other prepared foods, jams and jellies, and hand-made Native American crafts. Authentic Native American buffalo bone carvings, inlaid jewelry, and bead work from various artist will be available for purchase. Native American beaders will also offer live demonstrations on how to make their fine jewelry.
“Beadwork is eye-straining, time consuming work that takes experience and skill in achieving the finished product,” said Veronica Erenberg, Project Manager with the Center for Rural Affairs. “The demonstrations will offer an insight into what goes into a beadwork piece and why it is worth more that one thinks.”
Erenberg adds, “Not only is the Public Market an opportunity for Santee gardeners to sell extra produce, but we also welcome beaders, arts & crafts persons, bakers, and other community members to sell homemade and handmade items.”  Erenberg said she sees the market as an element of economic development and as a way to promote Santee art and artisans. “There are so many arts and crafts people who don’t get the exposure they deserve,” Erenberg said. “ This is a new avenue for them. This is promoting economic development.”
WHAT: Unci Maka (GrandMother Earth) Public Market 2015
WHERE: Ohiya Casino and Resort located in Niobrara, Nebraska on the Santee Sioux Reservation
53142 Highway 12
Niobrara, NE
WHEN: Saturday, July 25 at 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Setup time starts at 10:45 a.m. Tables and tents are available on a first come first serve basis. Vendors are encouraged to bring their own.
Market will continue to take place every Saturday from August through October.
The Unci Maka Market will also be adding new products and new faces. The Market recently welcomes two new staff members, Tracy Sheridan as Market Manager and Harper Saul as Project Assistant. Tracy brings 10 years experience working with the Santee Health Clinic and she makes and sells bead work and looks forward to selling her products at the Unci Maka Market. Harper recently graduated from Nebraska Indian Community College and provides graphic design and marketing expertise for the Market.
“Also, we recently launched Woyute Was`te (Good Food) Baskets. It is similar to a community supported agriculture (CSA) distribution program. Fresh, local, affordable baskets of produce are sold weekly in Santee,” Erenberg continued. “We’re also working with local cooks to demonstrate how to prepare fresh food from the baskets with samples and recipes. As we discuss and build interest for Woyute Was`te Baskets, we are greeted with enthusiasm and support to bring more nutritious, fresh and local foods back to Santee.”
Everyone involved in the Unci Maka Market looks forward to adding new food and craft vendors throughout the season.
The Public Market is part of the Santee Garden and Market Project, a joint effort between the Center for Rural Affairs and the Nebraska Indian Community College. Working together and building on grassroots interest and support, the project is bringing fresh foods and economic opportunity to Santee. The market is a result of a series of garden and market trainings happening throughout the year. Project organizers have been training the gardeners to grow food for home consumption and any extra produce can be sold at the Unci Maka (GrandMother Earth) Public Market.
The market was launched in 2012 with 16 vendors and over 600 customers. There is ample opportunity for vendors to make a nice income every Saturday throughout the summer especially with all the tourists and casino-goers, commented Erenberg.  
All vendors are welcome, especially those from surrounding communities. Sign up for free booth space. Contact Jim Hallum at (402) 961-0085, Veronica Erenberg at (267) 679-1251, Harper Saul at (402) 340-6829 or Tracy Sheridan at (402) 928-0414.
For more information visit www.cfra.org/santee