Heading to Idaho (not Tennessee) | TheFencePost.com

Heading to Idaho (not Tennessee)

Kim Merchant drives his wagon on the Oregon Trail in Wyoming.

Okay, I know in my last column, when I wrote about the Eastern Cherokee Nation, I said I would be following that with information about my recent trip to Tennessee … but I’m going to delay that column in order to let you know about some upcoming activities in Idaho.

The Oregon-California Trail Interpretive Center in Montpelier, Idaho, has a number of events planned in connection with a Smithsonian exhibit, “Journey Stories,” that shows how evolving mobility changed a young nation and how transportation made the country grow. The accounts of travelers themselves express the hopes and promises of fresh starts, the grim realities of forced migrations and difficult journeys, and the thrills of personal travel.

The grand opening of the exhibit, and the “A Journey Through Time” historical workshops, are Friday, July 23. The event is made possible by the Idaho Humanities Council and historical re-enactors. The exhibit will remain in place until August 28.

The schedule for the day includes opening ceremonies at 10 a.m., at the Oregon Trail Center; A Pony Express Mail Run at 10:30 a.m., at Wells C. Stock Park adjacent to the Oregon Trail Center.

At 10:30 a.m., the Historical Exhibit “A Journey Through Time” opens. There will be an historical presentation by Pioneer Adventures at noon followed by a musical history presentation at 2 p.m.

The Idaho premiere of the documentary film, “In Pursuit of a Dream” will be held at 7:30 p.m. at the Allinger Theater in the Trail Center. This is the documentary I wrote and produced and if all goes well with my schedule, I will be on hand for the showing in Idaho. Quackgrass Sally, the field producer for the film, and Kim Merchant, one of the three teachers who worked with Boston Productions and the Oregon-California Trails Association in making it, are both going to be present for the event. There is no charge for attendance at the film.

On Saturday additional activities will be held at the Trail Center and Wells C. Stock Park. Pony Express reenators will leave the Paris, Idaho, post office at 8 a.m., and transport mail to Montpelier and the Trail Center, arriving there at 10 a.m., where they will give a demonstration.

Beginning also at 10 a.m., historical exhibits and workshops will be open to the public. A historical musical presentation gets underway at 11 a.m.

From 2 to 3 p.m., at Wells C. Stock Park Center Stage, there will be a Bear Lake historical presentation by Pioneer Adventures. This will be followed by a musical jam session involving historical reenactors.

Other activities at the Trail Center are planned for this month and August. On Thursday, July 22, P. Gary Eller will present a musical journey through Idaho at 7:30 p.m., in the Allinger Community Theater. There is no charge for the performance that is made possible by the Idaho Humanities Council.

A special exhibit about Charles C. Rich, the founding pioneer of the Bear Lake Valley, will open at the Trail Center July 28 and remain in place through August 14. The movie about Rich, “The Measure of a Man,” will show July 31 at 7:30 p.m., in the Allinger Community Theater. There is no charge for the event which is sponsored by the Charles C. Rich Family.

August 6, at 7:30 p.m., Janet Ward will present “Women’s Journals of the Oregon Trail” in a free program sponsored by the Idaho Humanities Council.

On August 20, from 1 to 4 p.m., Kathy Hodges, State Oral Historian for Idaho State Historical Society, will present a workshop “Telling True Stories; Oral History in Idaho.” Seating for this event is limited and pre-registration is required. Oral History Workbooks are available for $10. For registration information please contact, Becky Smith at (208) 847-3800.

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