FOUR DIRECTIONS INSTITUTE

Four Directions at Hesperia Lake Park

 

Four Directions Institute at Hesperia Lake, Hesperia, California
 

 

     This is a rendering of our new home at Hesperia Lake.  In all, we will have 15 buildings in phase 1 comprising about 10,000 square feet.  The buildings are currently under construction and about 50% complete.  Completion is scheduled for September, 2003 . . . but you know how that goes.  The facilities will include offices, storage facilities, a museum, restrooms, a dome and fountain designed specifically for basket weaving, and a 50 foot circular multi-media classroom that will be a reproduction of a Chaco Canyon kiva.  
     Phase 2 will be a pueblo style building that will include eating facilities, a store, a gallery, an amphitheater / pow wow arena in the courtyard, 30 to 40 "camping" rooms (mostly upstairs), and restrooms with showers.
     Below is the floor plan of phase 1.
 

 

Here a couple of current construction photos from a really tall ladder.  It sort of looks like an archeological site in the photo below ... but it's not yet. Here we are a little later in the day showing a reflection of the lake.
Here is a current winter photo of the brick dome, the fire pit area, and the Great Kiva under construction in the background. Here is a winter photo of the brick dome with a grinding stone in the foreground.
     Here are some pictures of the dome near the entry:
and to the left are pictures of the "Star Fountain" inside the dome.  The star of abalone shell was inspired by star baskets popular among the tribes of Southern California.  The use of the fountain is for basket weaving.  The counter will accommodate ten or so weavers and their materials may be soaked in the fountain bowl.
This is the "Rattlesnake Basket Fountain" now being constructed in the courtyard.  The left picture is the base only.  The right picture shows the completed frame for the bowl and counter.  The rattlesnake design on the base honors the rattlesnake baskets of the tribes of Central California.  The bowl will feature a coiled rattlesnake honoring the rattlesnake basket style of Southern California.

 

     ...And here is the layout for the entire campus:

 

     The layout of our campus is inspired by the Pueblo Bonito site in Chaco Canyon, New Mexico.  Our multi-media classroom will be a scale model of the Great Kiva at Pueblo Bonito.  It will not only be a multi-media classroom designed to accommodate up to 40 students, it will accommodate up to 100 as a lecture hall.  It will serve as well as a center for cultural events.  Here is a little bit about some of the other features of the campus:
     1.  The John M. Swisher Museum - The museum will be housed in eight of the buildings and will offer an immersed experience for students from the third grade to graduate level.  
          A.  The two California displays will include a central California ceremonial round house and a wickiup typical of the Southern California cultures.  Student activities in these immersed environments will include acting out the play Home Alone on San Nicolas Island, inspired by Island of Blue Dolphins, grinding acorns and pine nuts, sing California Indian songs, hearing and telling California Indian stories, and eating California Indian foods.  These displays will feature California Indian artifacts and photographs.
          B.  The Plains display will feature a tipi inside the 18 foot dome.  Once again, plains artifacts will be on display.  The display will, however, feature a sophisticated light and laser animated presentation on buffalo hides demonstrating the massive migration onto the Plains.
          C.  The Southeastern display will feature a roundhouse typical of the so-called civilized tribes.  In addition to the displaying of artifacts, this display will use and demonstrate storytelling as an education medium base on the "Trail of Tears."
          D.  The Northeastern display will feature a wigwam.  Numerous age appropriate programs will be offered in this display including crafts, storytelling, historical presentations, and songs.
          E.  The Pueblo kiva display programs will feature history and storytelling and discussions of the role that kachinas play in Pueblo culture.
          F.  The functional Navajo female hogan will offer a presentation of Navajo culture and crafts.
          G.  The Archeology museum and "Dig" will feature not only artifacts, but the opportunity to dig for artifacts and participate in age appropriate analysis.
     2.  The Pottery shop will be just that.  It will accommodate traditional fashioning techniques as will as contemporary.
     3.  The wood and metal shop will be use for the smithing of gold and silver as well as blacksmithing, not to mention carving everything from kachinas to masks to bows.
     4.  The basketweaving dome (picture above) is really cool.  It's done.
     5.  The amphitheater facing the grassy area with the circle of 13 trees (cottonwoods ... 13 months in the lunar calendar) is for pow wows, concerts, plays, and cultural stuff.
      6.  The sort of "C" shaped building is really three storied.  The rooms displayed are only the first floor.  Student and faculty camping style housing will be on the second and third floors along with restroom and showers.  The will be a tower on the north end of the building for security and to provide lights and sound to the stage.
      7.  Those trellis looking booths around the exterior wall and here and there are for vendors, but they will look like pueblo ruins with wisteria or something growing on the roofs.  They will be 10' X 15'.  There are 60 of them.  They will be great for pow wow vendors, art shows, conferences, etc.
     We hope you like our plans and will come and visit us when we open.