August 5 2010

I swear it feels like we just finished putting Christmas decorations in storage and handed in our 2009 year-end inventory...where did the time go? We are now preparing for the on-slot of bikers roaring in on all 2 wheels (sometimes 3) and wondering what happened to our summer... For us, the annual Sturgis Rally marks the end of the vacationing season for families with children, by now they are back home purchasing school supplies and watching their last warm days of freedom fade away.

This year is the Rally's 70th anniversary and they (whoever they are) are expecting half a million visitors. Whether you enjoy motorcycles or not, just walking through downtown Sturgis during the rally is an experience unto itself. Wow, that's all I am going to say! Prairie Edge is unique enough and offers an experience not to be found on the streets of Sturgis. We have many friends from literally all over the world that attend the rally and they always make time for a visit to their favorite store while touring the hills.

Top Hat
Top Hat

One item in particular that is a constant favorite and truly unique to Prairie Edge is Mike McLeod's (Bad River Band - Lake Superior) top hats. The story goes that after he had returned from Washington, DC, Chief American Horse's wife adorned his gifted top hat with traditional beadwork and feathers, as well as items he collected on his trip - an American flag and the great seal of the United States.

Native American artist Mike McLeod illustrates his melding of cultures with this modern reproduction of American Horse's hat. He uses the lane/lazy stitch beadwork technique around the rim and adds decorative brass spots around the hatband. If you ever see Marty Stewart, Big and Rich or ZZ Top sporting a beaded top hat on stage or in a performance...it was undoubtedly crafted by Mike McLeod.

Buffalo Skull
Pony Soldier Buffalo Skull

The American flag is one of our nation's greatest symbols and is displayed with honor by many if not most of our rally attendees. Whether it is a bandana used for shade or Old Glory blowing freely and proudly in the wind from the back of a bike, the American flag represents our fight for independence and freedom. Dan Chapman, who happens to be from and still resides in Sturgis has taken this icon and created a contemporary reproduction of the Pony Soldier's design on a buffalo skull. The Pony Soldier design was used with the intention of bringing to the entire tribe the same power that the U.S. flag brought to the cavalry soldiers.

The cornerstone of Lakota Indian philosophy is that all elements of life - animal and plant, rock and earth, the seen and the unseen - move in a never-ending cycle of birth, death and rebirth. Thus are the cycles for all of us. Our daily routines become our circle. And before you know it, another year has gone by...

Buffalo Skull
Circle of Life

Native American jeweler Mike Haskell (Minneconjou | Lakota) has created a design he calls "Circle of Life" which incorporates the hills, pipe, moon, morning star, buffalo, eagle, thunderbird, rain cloud and lighting, turtle, horse - all integral elements of the Lakota Sioux universe and traditional way of life. These symbolic images are skillfully inlaid with traditional craft materials that include pipestone, turquoise, malachite, mother of pearl and sandstone, all representative of American Indian culture. Prairie Edge is proud to be one of the exclusive outlets that represent his truly unique design.

Please don't hesitate to call or e-mail if you are wondering about any of the items I wrote about. And if you find yourself heading this way for the rally or for any other reason...stop in and say hello. Safe travels and enjoy what we have left of summer; because in the blink of an eye it will be Thanksgiving then 2 seconds later you will be storing all of your Christmas decorations for yet another year! Best wishes, Brenda

While we love talking to our customers face-to-face, we're proud to offer an incredible shopping experience from home. Explore the sites and let us know what you think; and by all means if you experience any problems please contact us for assistance at 1-800-541-2388 or send us an e-mail info@prairieedge.com, we want to help.

- Best wishes from the staff at Prairie Edge and the Sioux Trading Post

Thank you!

Located in Rapid City, SD, Prairie Edge offers an extensive collection of Native American arts and crafts, educational materials, and an unparalleled selection of regional fine art. The store's trading company, Sioux Trading Post, maintains a comprehensive inventory of quality craft supplies, Czech and Italian beads, and Native American botanicals.

Prairie Edge | 606 Main St | Rapid City | SD | 57701
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