Museum Celebrates Heritage Days

January 12 & 13 at Superstition Mountain Museum

By Betty Swanson

Superstition Mountain Heritage Days, an annual two-day celebration of the history and lore of the Superstition Mountains, will be hosted by the Superstition Mountain Museum on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 12 and 13, 2019, from 9 a.m.- 4 p.m. Admission to the grounds for each day will be $5.00 per person, with children 10 years old and under admitted free of charge.

Special guests will be people who perpetuate and showcase the traditions and culture of the Native Americans indigenous to this area, those who helped perpetuate Western history at Apacheland Movie Ranch and performers who are keeping alive the history and music of the Southwest.

Yellow Bird Indian Dancers

Highlights of the two-day event will be performances by the Yellow Bird Indian Dancers, award-winning superstars of Native American dance, joined at this year’s event by the Cibecue Apache Mountain Spirit Dancers and the Cellicione Zuni Dancers. Other featured entertainment on both days includes John Wayne Impersonator Ermal Willliamson and his wife, Paula, a champion yodeler known as “America’s Yodeling Sweetheart.”

A new, notable event added to the celebration this year is an evening musical performance featuring  the Native American flute and guitar duos of Tony Duncan and Darrin Yazzie, who perform on Canyon Records, and Randy Kemp and Dean Yazzie, better known as “Artificial Red.”

Also performing as part of this talent showcase will be Zarco and Carmen Guerrero. Tickets to this two-hour show, beginning at 6 p.m. in the museum amphitheater, are $10 per person.

On Friday, Jan. 11, veteran movie/TV actor Michael Dante will host special free screenings (10 a.m. and 1 p.m.) of the movie “Kid Galahad,” in which he appeared with Elvis Presley, and tell stories about working with “the King.” He and other Apacheland Movie Ranch alumni, including Charlie LeSeuer, Hank Sheffer and Ron Nix, will be in the barn all weekend, relating tales about filming movies and television shows during the glory days of the Westerns.

Veteran actor Don Collier, who performed in many Western movies and television shows during the 1960s, including a recurring role in High Chaparral, will be adding his boot prints in concrete to the museum collection, while visiting with the Apacheland cowboys and attendees.

Teton Ken and his burro bring “The Dutchman” to life.

Teton Ken, along with his amazing animals, will be onsite offering burro rides, served up with his own special brand of humor, and Cowboy Steve will amaze with his rope tricks.

A number of well known Native American artisans will also be at the event to demonstrate their skills and sell their beautiful jewelry and creative works, along with vendors of Western merchandise.

The San Carlos Apache Veterans Association Native American Color Guard will perform flag raising honors both days.

Food courts will be available on the grounds. Visitors, young and old alike, can also watch the Superstition Mountain Railroad G-scale model trains, see a 20-stamp ore mill demonstration at 11 a.m. or 1 p.m., watch gunfights staged by the Superstition Mountain Regulators, pan for gold and admire the views.

The museum is located at 4087 N. Apache Trail on Highway 88 (SR88), just northeast of Apache Junction. For more information, call 480-983-4888, or go to

Photo above: Eagle dancer Kevin Duncan will perform along with the Yellow Bird Indian Dancers, this year at Heritage Days.

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