Last year, an idea came about to initiate a Junior Archaeology Club through the Rim Country Chapter of the Arizona Archaeology Society. The club is now firmly established, with Zane Wiles as its first president. The membership includes approximately 15 students interested in understanding early cultures.
The Junior Archaeology Club meets after school, at approximately 3:15 p.m. Wednesdays at the Museum of Rim Country Archaeology, 510 W. Main Street.
The club is organized by a series of six- to eight-week class sessions that present hands-on activities such as making pottery, basketry, petroglyphs, games, and more, as they were created by ancient cultures. The classes are taught by certified and avocational members of the Rim Country Chapter of the Arizona Archaeology Society.
This current session is primarily one of field trips. On May 12, there is a trip to Rye Creek; May 19 is a ‘Clay Day' at the museum; May 26 there will be a trip to Flowing Springs; and on Saturday, May 29, the group will take an all-day trip to Tonto National Monument, meeting at the museum at 8:15 a.m., and returning to the Museum of Rim Country Archaeology no later than 4 p.m.
Reservations for the Tonto National Monument trip are not necessary, but appreciated, so we can better estimate supplies for the day. Permission slips must be signed by a parent or guardian for the children to participate in field trips. Parents who would like to join the field trips are more than welcome.
The classes are free to all junior archaeologists. To become a member of the Junior Archaeology Club, the annual fee is only $5, it covers all the classes through 2004. The next set of classes will be announced soon.
After-school refreshments are served to the members before the classes begin, and the meetings-trips-activities usually go until 5 p.m.
This program is sponsored by the Rim Country Chapter of the Arizona Archaeology Society, the Rotary Club of Payson and the Northern Gila County Historical Society. For further information, please call Kathi Aultman at 928-517-1341 (cell phone).