Event—Public Programming

McNickle Center Winter Storytelling


Join the McNickle Center as these authors and storytellers share traditional, historical, and true contemporary tales for all ages.

Free to attend with advance registration here. SOLD OUT

LeAnne Howe

Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

LeAnne Howe is a poet, fiction writer, playwright, and filmmaker. She is the Eidson Distinguished Professor of American Literature in English at the University of Georgia, Athens. Her most recent book Savage Conversations, 2019 is set in an Illinois asylum. The story opens in 1875. Mary Todd Lincoln is addicted to opiates and has been tried in a Chicago court on charges of insanity. Entered into evidence is Ms. Lincoln’s claim that every night a Savage Indian enters her bedroom and slashes her face and scalp. Savage Conversations is a daring account of a former first lady and the ghosts that tormented her for the contradictions and crimes on which this nation is founded.

Kimberly Blaeser

White Earth Anishinaabe

Kimberly Blaeser is a writer, photographer, and scholar, is a Professor at the University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee and serves on faculty for the Institute of American Indian Arts low rez MFA program in Santa Fe. The author of three poetry collections—most recently Apprenticed to Justice; and the editor of Traces in Blood, Bone, and Stone: Contemporary Ojibwe Poetry, she served as Wisconsin Poet Laureate for 2015-16. Her short fiction is forthcoming in Cutthroat, a Journal of the Arts, has appeared recently in Wasafiri, and has been anthologized in collections such as Reckoning: Contemporary Short Fiction by Native American Women. Her writing in various genres has been widely anthologized, with poetry selections translated into several languages including Spanish, French, Norwegian, Indonesian, and Hungarian. Blaeser is Anishinaabe, an enrolled member of the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe and grew up on White Earth Reservation. She is an editorial board member for the “American Indian Lives” series of the University of Nebraska Press and for the “Native American Series” of Michigan State University Press. A fourth collection of poetry, Hunger for Balance, will be released from Holy Cow! Press in fall 2019.

Margaret Noodin


Margaret Noodin received an MFA in Creative Writing and a PhD in English and Linguistics from the University of Minnesota. She is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where she also serves at the Director of the Electa Quinney Institute for American Indian Education. She is the author of Bawaajimo: A Dialect of Dreams in Anishinaabe Language and Literature and Weweni, a collection of bilingual poems in Ojibwe and English. Her poems and essays have been anthologized and published in Sing: Poetry from the Indigenous Americas, Poetry Magazine, The Michigan Quarterly Review, Water Stone Review, and Yellow Medicine Review. She is a strong advocate for education and community engagement through relevant research and teaching. In Milwaukee she works with the First Nations Program in the Milwaukee Public Schools, the Milwaukee School of Languages, the Milwaukee Indian Community School, the Audubon Center and the Urban Ecology Center. With her daughters, Shannon and Fionna, she is a member of Miskwaasining Nagamojig (the Swamp Singers) a women's hand drum group whose lyrics are all in Anishinaabemowin (Ojibwe). To see and hear current projects visit www.ojibwe.net where she and other students and speakers of Ojibwe have created a space for language to be shared by academics and the native community.

Heid Erdrich

Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibway

Heid E. Erdrich is the author of five collections of poetry, most recently Curator of Ephemera at the New Museum for Archaic Media from Michigan State University Press. She is editor of two anthologies of literature by Native writers including NEW POETS OF NATIVE NATIONS form Graywolf Press. Her recent non-fiction work is Original Local: Indigenous Foods, Stories and Recipes. Heid’s writing has won awards from Native Arts and Culture Foundation, Loft Literary Center, Minnesota State Arts Board, Minnesota Book Award, and more. You can see her award-winning, collaborative poem films on her Vimeo channel. Heid grew up in Wahpeton, North Dakota and is Ojibwe enrolled at Turtle Mountain. She teaches in the low-residency MFA Creative Writing program of Augsburg College.

Gordon Henry

White Earth Anishinaabe

Dr. Henry is also a Professor in the English Department at Michigan State University, where he teaches American Indian Literature, Creative Writing and the Creative Process, in Integrative Arts and Humanities. Six years ago, while serving as Director of the Native American Institute at Michigan State, he founded, along with Ellen Cushman, the Native American Youth Film Institute. In 2014, again along with Dr. Cushman and staff at the NAI, he founded Indigistory, a digital storytelling organization, dedicated to collaboration with tribal communities. Indigistory was awarded an MSU Distinguished Partnership Award for Outreach and Engagement in 2017. Professor Henry continues to work with the NAI and the Michigan Inter-Tribal Council, on Indigistory.

June Thiele

Athabascan and Yupik

June Thiele is a Native American, two-spirit actor, writer, and performance artist. Indigenous to Alaska, June travelled to Chicago some years ago to attend Columbia College. June has been lucky enough to work with some amazing artists in Chicago, and their playwriting endeavors have created some great opportunities. Recently June had the honor of attending a fellowship with PBS Kids Television to help the development of First Nationally Distributed Children's Series to Feature Alaska Native Lead Character, Molly of Denali. June hopes to further indigenous culture by creating modern Native narratives through theatre, performance arts, and story-telling.

Sequoyah Guess

United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians

Keetoowah Cherokee storyteller, author, and United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians Tradition Keeper.

For more information please call the D'Arcy McNickle Center Program Coordinator, Patrick Rochford at (312) 255-3552 or email rochfordp@newberry.org