Mid-Atlantic Primitive Skills Group
Each year since 1988 professional and avocational flintknappers, living history practitioners, traditional archers, and archaeologists have gathered together with the visiting public during the first weekend in May to share knowledge and hands-on experience in replicating items composed of stone, bone, wood, and natural fibers. MAPS has been a part of this since 1997 and continues to participate annually.
We are looking for volunteers who want to attend the two day event and help MAPS Group grow by engaging with the public and signing up new members. There will be a MAPS table set up during the event with MAPS information, examples of members primitive crafts and possibly demonstrations of select skills.
This year's theme is wild food. MAPS Group will provide a foraging program on select topics.
While you are representing MAPS you can stroll through the work area you will see knappers using hammerstones or other percussion tools to flake away or sculpt a stone tool such as an arrowhead, spear point, or scraper. Shaping stones through this process was one of primitive man's earliest skills and has become an art form today. You might observe someone scraping the fur off a wet deer hide; the end result being a smooth, soft buckskin for making moccasins, bags, gloves, dresses or anything that we make with fabric today.
Additionally each year there are a variety of other primitive skill demonstrations including pottery, basket making, blade and axe production, bead making and much more. And before you leave, try your hand at shooting a bow and arrow or throwing a spear using a primitive device known as an atlatl.
Constructed in 1983, the Nature Center structure houses wildlife and nature displays to delight all ages, as well as the library, gift shop, and an auditorium for classes, meetings and colloquia. There are miles of nature and hiking trails just outside the nature center.
Directions to Oregon Ridge Nature Center
From Baltimore Beltway
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