Community Art & Cultural Exchange
Co-Presented with Niijii Radio
Wednesday, May 22, 2024
4:00 – 7:00 p.m.
@ NYM Sculpture Park / Barn

All are invited to Celebrating Cultures, a family-friendly community art and cultural exchange event!  Join us at the New York Mills Sculpture Park / Barn just off Highway 10 in New York Mills between 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 22, 2024. This event is free to attend and will include both free and paid activities/products for sale.

This year is the 4th annual cultural exchange event held in partnership with Niijii Radio and we are thrilled to be working with them again this year. Niijii Radio will once again work with partners to share Native dancing, drumming, and storytelling, as well as a variety of Indigenous artists and makers.

Seeking cultural partners!

We are seeking additional cultural partners to make this a true cross-cultural exchange event; all cultures are welcome!

Do you have stories, traditions, artistic practices, or cultural food to share? Give us a call at 218-385-3339 or send an email to All those interested in positive, family-friendly cross-cultural sharing are welcome.

Ideas for participation include art activities for children and adults, artist/maker demonstrations, cultural exchange sharing presentations, food booths/trucks, and any creative way to share and celebrate a variety of cultures!

At this year’s event, we will continue to focus on family-friendly community art activities. Artist and makers selling hand-crafted items are welcome to set up a booth. You must provide all your set-up materials (booth, tables, chairs, etc.). You must register ahead of time, and we invite you to send us information so that we can promote your work! Space is available on a first-come, first-served basis. You may set up at the Sculpture Park on May 22nd beginning at 2:00 p.m. Complete the form below to register online, or contact or call 218-385-3339 with questions.

Event will include:

  • Performances
    • Buffalo River Dance Troupe: Ojibwe dancing, drumming, and storytelling.
    • Scottish Bagpipes: Ian Durkin started playing bagpipes in 2019 as a way to exercise his appreciation of Celtic music as well as connect with his Scottish heritage. He regularly performs throughout western Minnesota and eastern North Dakota with the pipe band Heather and Thistle Pipes and Drums, based out of Fargo, ND.
    • Taste of Colombia: Gladys from Taste of Colombia in Wadena will share traditional Colombian dance.
    • Kip Peltoniemi of New York Mills will share traditional Finnish music.
    • Chinese Heritage Of Recreation and Dance (CHORD), an affiliate of United Chinese Americans of Fargo Moorhead (UCAFM), derives from one of UCAFM’s missions of promoting culture and art, collaborates with the local community and businesses to unfold the Chinese culture through showcasing various dances and other art forms, and encourages self-actualization needs of all ages. CHORD will share a 20-minute program that includes introductions of each dance, the cultural background of the dance, and the performance itself. Learn more:
    • Elizabeth Gade is a rural Northern Minnesota-based poet and human trafficking survivor. She was an Artist-in-Residence in NYM in October 2023. In addition to being a widely published poet, Elizabeth created LEO Literary Journal, an online journal dedicated to women writers affected by incarceration, addiction, and/or domestic violence. She is also the creator and host of Survived To Write, a survivor-led writing circle online for human trafficking survivors. Her self-published debut poetry collection “Fawn and Freeze” will be available for purchase at this event.
  • Activities/Learnings/Demonstrations
    • Experience Finland in a Suitcase with Adam & Amy Tervola Hultberg, in collaboration with Finn Creek Open Air Museum
    • Following a Feb 2024 residency at NYM, Visiting Artist Bon Mott of Melbourne, Australia, will discuss the concept of respectful, reciprocal mentoring with First Nations Collaborators’ culture, traditions, and art, including a video documentary set up in the Barn and is available to connect with attendees throughout the event. Here is a link to their films:
    • Katy Olson & Lindsey Scherloum share an Invitation to Wholeness: Lakes Country, Planet Earth:
      This participatory art project engages the public in creating an entrancing visual landscape using individual glass pendants and wire while offering a personal intention around care for the Earth.
      This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through grants from Lake Region Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage fund.
    • Scribbletastic Fun-O-Matic Command Post: Join Artist Brad Wegscheid in creating temporary art masterpieces on fun whiteboard cut-out standing shapes. Fun for kids of all ages and kids at heart!
    • The History Museum of East Otter Tail County will bring information about how to research your family tree and learn more about your own culture.
    • Kasha & Bonnie will share Polish culture and treats.
    • The Cultural Center will have a variety of arts and cultural activities for people of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy!
  • Indigenous Artists and Makers
    • Birch bark crafts with Audrey Dahl
    • Beading demonstration with Tracey Mason
    • Lacross demonstration
  • Food & Drinks
    • Native Harvest: Offering wild rice hot dish and sumac tea for purchase.
    • Taste of Colombia: Fall in love with the flavors of Colombia! Sharing the best typical Colombian products from their store in Wadena.
    • Baby’s Bagels: Food truck concession trailer serving locally grown farm fresh beef burgers dressed up on a bagel.

Unfortunately, Lorena Roses will be unable to attend. She had planned to share her Brazilian culture. We hope Lorena can join us at another event soon!

More details will be added as activities, artists, businesses, and organizational partners are confirmed. Register below today, e-mail, or call us at 218-385-3339 to add your name to this list above!

Thanks in advance to all the artists, makers, culture bearers, organizational partners, and businesses for coming together for this fun community cross-cultural art event.

    Your Name (required)

    Your Email (required)

    Your Phone Number (required)

    What would you like to sell or demonstrate?

    How can we contact you?


    Questions? Call us at 218-385-3339 or email


    This activity is made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through grants from the Lake Region Arts Council and Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage fund.