State Museum to host Winter Game Carnival

Posted: Thursday, February 03, 2011

Have you ever wished you could do the one-foot high kick, or maybe the knuckle hop? For those eager to learn and for those who just prefer to observe, the Alaska State Museum in Juneau presents Great Alaska Games from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 5. The family event is being held in conjunction with Jeff Brown’s “The Alaska Game Show” exhibit, currently on display at the museum through Feb. 12. Admission is free, and most events will be held in the Juneau Arts & Culture Center.

A number of community partners will contribute to the event, each presenting activities that highlight various aspects of gaming with a focus on the activity’s significance in Alaskan history and exploring some science and math behind the games. Interactive stations will feature free activities for children and adults of all ages.

The event’s featured activities will include demonstrations by the Mt. Edgecumbe High School Arctic Winter Games athletes with the assistance of their Native Youth Olympics coach. At the top of each hour, athletes will demonstrate AWG events, allowing participants to learn the events for the remainder of the hour.

At half past each hour, attendees may view Jeff Brown’s Great Alaska Flea Circus as well as a bit of magic. Like his exhibition, games at this station are related to Alaska history or contain an Alaskan theme, and they will offer opportunities to explore the purpose and science behind the games.

University of Alaska Southeast Math Club members will teach math-based Alaska games and Juneau-Douglas High School students will demonstrate and teach the Eskimo yo-yo and an Alaskan version of the string game Cat’s Cradle.

Sled dog musher and Iditarod Red Lantern Award winner Deborah Bicknell will be present with her Iditarod lead and point dogs, Leggs and Squirrel, her two Red Lantern Awards, and some of the important equipment used in racing.

The Juneau Economic Development Council’s Springboard program will host a center demonstrating the scientific aspects of skateable ice. Participants will explore slipperiness as it pertains to hockey players, figure skaters and speed skaters and measure the speed of hockey pucks as they take shots.

The Association for Education of Young Children in Southeast Alaska will host games for young children such as the Moose Toss, Pin the Tail on the Brown Bear, the Kake Walk and the Raingear Relay.

Games related to storytelling, art and traditions will be shared by the Juneau Public Library, and an interactive station of old-fashioned games will be hosted by the Juneau-Douglas City Museum. Alaskan-themed board games and card games will also be available for participants to play.

All carnival events are free of charge. For more information, contact visitor services at 465-2901.

The event is funded in part by the Friends of the Alaska State Museum, the National Defense Education Program through the Juneau Economic Development Council, and the citizens of the City and Borough of Juneau through sales tax revenue.

For more information, call 465-2901 or visit

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