The Arizona SHPO and Governor's office have long-promoted the protection of the state's non-renewable cultural and heritage resources and public education and awareness. Beginning in 1982, the Governor's Archaeology Advisory Group (now the Governors Archaeology Advisory Commission) developed the nationally popular "Thief in Time" poster and promoted a plan of action for the protection of cultural resources, which has included the State’s award-winning Site Stewards program, creation of Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month, and its capstone event, the Archaeology Expo. SHPO is proud to note that Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month has grown into a major public relations effort that now involves more than 40 federal, state, municipal and private organizations collaboratively working to inform the public about the practice of archaeology and importance of cultural resources management in the statewide. However, at this time limited staff resources require SHPO to scale back coordination of these public activities and the Expo event.
While SHPO is not playing a coordinating role for 2019 Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month, our preservation partners continue to plan for a series of fun and informative tours, lectures and activities for the public. These events are programmed statewide and will take place between March 1st and March 31st, 2019. Please feel free to share this calendar of events broadly among your friends and colleagues.
The Archaeology Expo and corresponding month’s activities have always strived to promote an ethic of heritage stewardship among Arizona residents of all ages; however, a significant portion of our partner’s programs have been devoted to educating school aged children about the practice of archaeology as it relates to the conservation of the state’s cultural resources. As we move forward, SHPO plans to work with our partners to uncover additional grant support to develop an innovative educational program for Arizona Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month that will facilitate collaboration with our office, program partners and schools around the state to ensure that the educational foundations of the program are strengthened and that the various regional events are articulated with existing K-12 curriculum.
While we take this pause to vision and plan for a coordinated statewide curriculum of archaeological and heritage stewardship, we hope you will take the opportunity to participate in one or more of the 2019 Archaeology and Heritage Awareness Month activities! We invite you to join us by providing your feedback on existing programming and thoughts on what future programming should look like.