By Joan Ellison, Special Correspondent

Ten feet below the surface of the ground, just east of Prairie Lake, the skeleton of a young woman was found in 1931. 

Scientists have estimated her height at about five feet and proposed that she lay under years of sediment that filtered out of the ice melting into a glacial lake. Estimates of her age range from 8,000 to 20,000 years. Ten thousand years is about 500 generations. My grandchildren are two generations younger than I am and they are baffled by the idea that our phone is attached to the wall with a wire. The differences between the world today and Minnesota Woman’s day are almost unimaginable. 

“A Bridge from the Past to the Future: Glacial Minnesota Woman and the International Friendship Festival” includes many different events celebrating the history of Minnesota Woman. 

The Glacial Minnesota Woman exhibit at the Pelican Rapids Library has given 14 artists the opportunity to try to imagine the post glacial world in which Minnesota Woman lived and perhaps to illustrate some understanding of the real woman who died near Pelican Rapids as the glaciers were retreating and life was returning to the landscape. 

Kim Embretson describes his piece Source of our Verdant World, with these words: “Our world is always changing, by seasons, time and human impact. The beauty we see now was formed by ancient forces of fire and ice.” 

The pieces in this exhibit encompass fiber art, oils, water colors, pastels, acrylics, alcohol inks, wood, metal and stone. All the artists used their favored medium to interpret MN Woman through their own experiences and landscapes in the world.

Grace Haverty writes of Ice Woman, “Even though I grew up in New York City I feel a great love and attachment to Minnesota. I could only imagine how the ice women lived, raised children and survived in the harsh circumstances of that time. We have to admire their strength and stamina of these brave women.”

Exhibit on now through June, open house is June 14

Stop by the Pelican Rapids Library (25 West Mill) during library hours in May or June to enjoy this really fascinating exhibit. 

An open house is planned in Veterans Memorial Park behind the library on June 14 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. 

One of the wonderful aspects of the Festival is that one can interact with and learn from people who are different from oneself in a variety of ways. Maybe it is their music that we admire, maybe their dance, maybe the art through which they describe the world. 

Latina artist to speak at special June 16 event

On, Wednesday June 16, at 7 p.m., Latina artist Kandace Creel Falcón will speak about cultural appropriation in art. 

This talk is a part of the “Sit with me; let’s have a conversation” speakers series co-sponsored by the Pelican Rapids Multicultural Committee, the Otter Tail County Historical Society, the Underwood Unitarian Church, West Central Initiative and the Welcome Place. Contact joan.jarvis.ellison@gmail.com for more information about Falcón’s talk.