WUFT News

Return To Florida’s 1800s at Alligator Warrior Festival

By on October 18th, 2013

If you drive to O’Leno State Park this weekend, you will find yourself stepping into North Florida’s past.

This year is the 17th annual Alligator Warrior Festival celebrating the early 1800’s. This is a time when Lake City was simply known as Alligator, Florida.

The festival is run by a non profit that aims to entertain and educate, something organizers feel is most important for the younger crowd.

“Because of the way school systems are and they’re cutting back… fourth graders are the only ones who get Florida history. They don’t get it in third grade, fifth grade they start U.S. history, and that’s the last they will hear about this time frame that was so important in Florida’s history.” said Douglas Vasco, president of the Alligator Warrior Festival.

Those who attend will find the history lessons go far beyond Florida.

The Alligator Festival brings Native Americans from all over the country, including states like South Dakota.

At the park they will even have teepees from the plains tribe known as the Lakota Nation.

This festival is part of a series of similar festivals throughout the United States known as the pow wow circuit, and they are part of a much older tradition.

“The white man was not allowed into the pow wows. It was strictly native people, but a lot of the elders and the story tellers decided the only way we could start teaching the white man how we lived was actually inviting them to the pow wows, and that’s why they started,” said Running Bear, of the Lakota tribe.

The Alligator Warrior Festival drew in nearly 3,000 visitors last year who came to learn the history of the Native American tribes in the area.

This will continue from Friday through Sunday. Entrance is $5.


This entry was posted in Florida. Bookmark the permalink.
  • Chris Kimball

    Teepees, Lakota, and pow wows have nothing to do with Florida history or Seminole history and culture. You are just mixing history and cultures and presenting a confusing picture to the public.

 

More Stories in Florida

medicalmj

Medical Marijuana Supporters Renew Legalization Efforts With New Petition

Supporters of medical marijuana legalization went to court houses all over Florida on Friday in an effort to acquire the signatures needed to put the issue on the 2016 ballot. They need a total of 683,149 signatures, according to Ben Pollara, campaign manager for United for Care, an organization dedicated to legalizing medical marijuana.


Marion County Plane Crash

Two People Dead In Weirsdale Plane Crash

Two people are dead after a single-engine aircraft crashed in Weirsdale, Fla. today. Marion County officials conducted early investigations before handing over to the FAA and NTSB.


Jimmy Nelson, owner and host of television show Extreme Fishing Adventures, films for an episode in Key West, Fla., in January 2011. Nelson, 36-year-old Dunnellon resident, gave up real estate in 2008 to host his own fishing show.

Dunnellon Resident Hosts Fishing Television Show

Jimmy Nelson, a resident of Dunnellon, Florida, grew up with an affinity for water and fishing. After his job as a real estate agent was affected by the 2006 housing market decline, Nelson began his journey of turning his fishing hobby into a television career.


Wild Waters park in Ocala, Fla. is scheduled to phase-out and shut down in 2016, much to the chagrin of long-time visitors.

Wild Waters Phase-Out Plan Upsets Visitors

Officials at Wild Waters Water Park in Ocala are moving forward with plans to phase out the park and turn it into an ecotourism site by 2016. Long-time fans of the park are protesting the loss of one of Florida’s crown jewels. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection hopes to curb the 2 million gallons of water the park drains each month from Ocala’s water system.


Flooding in front of a home on Sugar Hill Road in Steinhatchee, Fla.

Flooding Forces Dixie County Residents From Homes

Dixie County residents are being pushed out of their homes as flood waters rise after heavy rain in the past 24 hours. About 45 homes and 30 roads have been affected throughout the county.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments