Last weekend the Somali Artifact and Cultural Museum had its first anniversary. As many of you know, this storefront museum on Lake Street is unique. The only institution in America devoted to preserving traditional Somali arts and folklore, it has a small but growing collection of artifacts that illuminate traditional nomadic society. Museum volunteers and staff use this collection to connect Somali youth to their heritage and inform non-Somalis about Somali culture. Without this work, Somalis and non-Somalis alike fear that traditional Somali culture will disappear forever.
A public gala on October 18 celebrated the museum’s first year of operations. This event included a dinner of traditional Somali food, performances of popular Somali folk dances, speeches by community leaders, and a comic theater performance by popular Somali comedian Maxamad Barastimool and others. The event was hosted by Mulki Hussein, a Minneapolis Somali community organizer, and Abdihakim BR, another popular comedian. Check out this short video clip from the evening. It comes to Historyapolis from museum professional Nina Clark, with permission from the Somali Artifact and Cultural Museum.