Events in 2019 (scroll down to read more about each event)
Member Meetings in 2019 Generally meetings are held the second Monday of each month at 6:30 pm in the meeting room below the Library in the Hermosa Town Office (next door to the Post Office and HAHA Museum). Park in the HAHA parking lot and walk over.
New members are welcome! We'll gladly put your talents to work.
January 12 -- annual potluck & member meeting: Board election, committee reports, event planning. February 11 -- meeting was held in the lower-level meeting room below the Hermosa Library. March 11 -- meeting was held in the lower-level meeting room below the Hermosa Library. April 8 -- meeting was held at the HAHA Museum. May 6 -- meeting moved to the first Monday to accommodate members' schedules. Held in the lower-level meeting room. June 10 -- July 8 -- August 12 -- held in the lower-level meeting room, with a trip to the Museum to look at future stairway layout. September 9 -- held in the lower-level meeting room. October 14 -- held in the lower-level meeting room. November 11 -- December 9 --
HAHA's Annual Christmas Carnival and Craft Fair (Sunday, December 8th) Many members of the Hermosa community joined us at the Hermosa School gym on Sunday, December 8th for food and fun. We had games and prizes and the Santa Store for kids, and a Craft Fair for adults. Food and Holiday Cheer for everyone.
2019 group photo of many -- but not all -- HAHA volunteers plus Santa and Mrs. Santa.
READ ABOUT OUR PAST EVENTS IN 2019
Trick or Treat at the HAHA Museum Front Porch (October 31 from 4:30 to 7 pm) Kids, teenagers and adults were invited to come in Costume! Everyone was welcome to stop by the HAHA front porch on Halloween for a treat, some spooky fun, and to learn a bit about the HAHA Museum. We took photos of our decorations and costumes and posted them on Facebook. Here is a slideshow of those photos:
HAHA's Annual Storytellers Program “A Western Wingding in Song and Story" A Musical History of Eastern Custer County Saturday, October 12th, 2019 --- 7 pm --- Hermosa School Gym
“A Western Wingding in Song and Story—A Musical History of Eastern Custer County.” Starring musicians Allen and Jill Kirkham; followed by an overview of Hermosa’s rich musical heritage with a HAHA exhibit featuring past and present local musical history. Local musicians will be celebrated through photographs and text.
*** Made possible by the SD Humanities Council, an affiliate of National Endowment for the Humanities. ***
Come prepared to tap your toes and sway to acoustic music on guitar, bass fiddle, mandolin and harmonica. Allen and Jill Kirkham are performing their “History of Traditional American Western Music” program on October 12 at the annual Hermosa Arts and History Association Storyteller Event at 7:00 PM in the Hermosa School Gymnasium. The program is made possible by the South Dakota Humanities Council, an affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.
The Kirkham’s present oral and live musical presentations of public domain, traditional Western music, contemporary and original western music, 1870-1907. They share background and history behind the songs and include songs of the Black Hills, valleys, pine trees and plains, cowboys and cowgirls, horses and cattle, pioneer families, gold miners, ghost towns, cavalry, Native Americans, outlaws, gamblers and gunfighters.
Following the Kirkham’s performance, guests will enjoy an overview of Hermosa’s rich musical heritage and be invited to view a HAHA exhibit featuring past and present local musical history. Local musicians will be celebrated through photographs and text. Guests might recall their own past Hermosa musical experience when they read a memory like this:
Hermosa music wouldn’t be complete without trying to explain the long history of Hermosa Saturday Night Dances at the community hall (the long white building - now a tavern on the east side of Hermosa) In the 1940s and 50s at least once a month Hermosa held a community dance. The bands usually played country western music (The Buddy Meredith Band was most popular) but sometimes a band would play in the style of music from the 30s and 40s (one of the bands was the Gibbs Orchestra)
The dances were true community affairs. Every family would attend from the areas all around Hermosa. Since everybody knew everybody, husbands would dance with wives first and last always but in between it was expected that the men would ask the neighbor wives to dance as well. And if your neighbor asked YOUR wife to dance, it would be an embarrassing slight if you didn’t ask HIS wife to dance that number. Kids sat on the sidelines then would be put to sleep in the backseat of the car with mom and dad coming out to check between music numbers. Teenagers joined in the dancing.
Residents from all over the Hills came to these dances. I still meet people from Piedmont, Rapid City, Sturgis and elsewhere who learn that I grew up in Hermosa, who’ll smile and say, “Oh, HERMOSA! I remember those crazy Saturday Night Dances!” No liquor was sold in the building so of course between numbers, several of the dancers would slip out the side doors to their cars where several had brought a good supply of drink. And by the end of the evening, there was the inevitable cry inside the dancehall, “FIGHT!” That was the signal for anyone interested to hurry outside to watch two of the cowboys swinging punches at one another over some issue they had with one another. If you heard the breaking of a bottle and one of the cowboys looked like he was going to use it in the fight, someone would run get the sheriff, Clyde Adudell who was usually there anyway, dancing with his wife.
Somewhere around midnight the evening closed with whatever band was playing, striking up “Show Me the Way to Go Home” and then couples would head downstairs where they could buy sandwiches and coffee and cake. “ (Courtesy Beverly Groth)
Come to hear Allen and Jill on October 12 at the Hermosa Arts and History Association (HAHA) annual Storyteller Event and create your own Hermosa musical memory. There is no admission charge. HAHA is a non-profit organization. Donations are appreciated.
Preserving the Past & Engaging the Future at a Small Museum October 5, 2019 -- Custer County Courthouse Annex, Custer, SD
Three members of the Hermosa Arts & History Association presented a program for the Custer County Historical Society on Saturday, October 5, telling the story of the Hermosa Arts & History Association (HAHA).
Linda M. Hasselstrom is a long-time resident of eastern Custer County. She is a rancher with deep family roots in the Hermosa area. Linda is also an accomplished professional author having written numerous books reflecting on prairie life. Her Writing Retreat, Windbreak House, located on her family's ranch, is popular with aspiring authors. Linda is currently the vice president of HAHA.
Rick Mills, also a long-time Hermosa resident, was one of three co-founders of HAHA in 1999, and was instrumental in rescuing the HAHA Museum from destruction and securing community support to renovate the historic building. Rick is currently the executor of the South Dakota Railroad Museum in Hill City, SD.
Candice Leigh is a transplant to the Hermosa area having previously lived in Rapid City where she taught school in the Ellsworth AFB School System, Rapid City Area Schools, and Children's House Montessori. Since retiring, Candice has volunteered periodically to assist with archiving at Mount Rushmore National Memorial and Custer State Park. She joined the all-volunteer HAHA association and assists with preservation of the building and collections.
Linda, Rick, and Candice told the story of Hermosa Arts & History Association by: 1. Sharing the history of the 1899 former schoolhouse/Masonic Lodge building which is on the National Register of Historic Buildings. 2. Telling the story of the founding of Hermosa Arts & History Association in 1999 by three community members with a sense of humor (HAHA): Rick Mills, June Lee and Doug Hesnard. 3. Relating the challenges of owning an 1889 building and describing efforts to preserve its historic character while remodeling it into a purposeful and practical community asset. 4. Presenting visual images of the current museum gallery. 5. Explaining how HAHA has been assisted by the Mary Chilton Daughters of the American Revolution Foundation in Sioux Falls through the purchase of software and hardware to digitize the collection. 6. Recognizing Zonta of the Southern Hills for their assistance through a grant to purchase preservation materials for the women's collection. 7. Appreciating Gene Fennell, Custer architect, for professional building guidance 8. Outlining programs and events offered that enrich community.
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Custer County Fair -- HAHA display booth August 8-11, 2019 -- Custer County Fairgrounds, Hermosa, SD
HAHA volunteers put together a ranch-themed booth at the Custer County Fair in 2019, including a special display of ranching items from the Bishop Family, large photos of the local brands and brand quilt on display at the HAHA Museum, old-time kitchen items, and other western gear. Volunteers were available throughout the fair to hand out information about HAHA and local history. We also had some vintage books on sale for a donation.
Grant Check Presentation and Group Photo May 9, 2019 -- 2 pm at the HAHA Museum The Deadwood Historic Preservation Commission awarded HAHA an “Outside of Deadwood Grant” and presented HAHA with a ceremonial check at the Museum on May 9th at 2 pm.
HAHA members and volunteers, including Dan Holsworth, the Hermosa Town Council president, came to show our support of HAHA and our appreciation for this grant. We had a Museum Open House after the presentation and group photo.
Immediately after the Deadwood Historic Preservation Committee members departed, HAHA volunteers moved and covered exhibits in preparation for the next round of demolition (tearing down plaster) that precedes remodeling.
Hermosa 4th-Graders Dissected Owl Pellets May 6th --- Hermosa Town Office lower-level meeting room Deb Smith's class of 29 4th-Graders were invited to a special wildlife class taught by environmental educator Julie Brazell, to learn about great horned owls-- a local native species.
The class did some hands-on research by dissecting regurgitated owl pellets and making notes on the animal species eaten by the owls. Julie Brazell helped the class identify the bones and teeth found. The class was able to identify small rodents, a rabbit, and a skunk.
When an owl eats a small mammal or bird, some parts of the meal-- such as bones, claws, teeth, hair, and feathers-- are not able to be digested. That material is compacted in the gizzard and the pellet is spit out by the owl. The pellets, as can be seen in the photo, below, are dry and crumbly.
Thanks to HAHA volunteer Candice Leigh, for coordinating this class and taking the photos. And to HAHA volunteer Linda M. Hasselstrom, for supplying a big box of owl pellets from her ranch, where a healthy pair of great horned owls keeps the pest species in check.
HAHA Presents Hermosa Saturday Night April 27th --- 5 pm --- Hermosa School Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Custer State Park
see the slide show, below
Our annual fundraiser a "Hermosa Saturday Night," was a great success. This year we celebrated our neighbor Custer State Park on its centennial year.
Schedule of Events--- 5 pm -- Doors opened to the public. Free admission! Sale of Lucky Number Raffle tickets and Silent Auction sign-up started immediately. 5:30 pm -- Supper of Sloppy Joes, chips, beverages, and HAHA's famous brownies and desserts. Meal was offered for a free-will donation. 6:15 pm -- Sally Svenson, local musician and long-time Park employee, debuted her songs honoring Custer State Park. 6:30 pm -- Speakers Craig Pugsley and Dick Miller spoke about the history of the Park and told stories about their experiences. Craig Pugsley is a former Interpretive Director of Custer State Park and Dick Miller is a former Superintendent of the Park. 7:30 pm -- Cash prizes were awarded for the Lucky Number Raffle and Silent Auction items went to the highest bidders.
Saturday, March 16 -- Journal-Writing Workshop with local author Linda M. Hasselstrom Presented by Hermosa Arts & History Association and the Hermosa Library
We had a wonderful HAHA Journal Writing workshop on Saturday. A huge THANK YOU to Linda M. Hasselstrom for teaching this free class.
16 women attended and learned much from Linda's suggestions about using a journal, 2-minute writing exercises in class, Linda's stories about her writing life, and some thoughtful group discussion. Women went home inspired to write in their journals!
During the lunch break everyone stepped outside to enjoy the warmth of the sun and the fresh, blue sky. A few of us toured the HAHA Museum, though many exhibits are covered against dust until the next Museum Open House.
Our hero of the day was Bert, from the Hermosa Library, who supplied coffee and snacks for our breaks.
Send HAHA a Facebook message or send an email to Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to be put on an email list to be notified of any class in the future.