Frequently Asked QuestionsFind answers here
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History / Context
- Who was Quanah Parker, and why is he important?
Quanah Parker, of the Quahada band of Comanches, was the son of Chief Peta Nocona and Cynthia Ann Parker, who had been captured from her family's log fort in Comancheria in 1836. Quanah fought until it was no longer possible to live the life of the free plains Comanche, learning English along the way. He then led his people to the reservation, and turned his attention to ranching and governance. He is remembered for his leadership, dignity, generosity, business acumen, mentorship, commitment to education, love of family, and intelligence. To learn more, see the 2019 proclamation of Quanah Parker Day in Texas or a set of historical articles about Quanah and his family at quanahparkerday.com.
- Where is Quanah, Texas?
Quanah is in north Texas, adjacent to the panhandle, on US-287 and TX-6. It is 192 miles northwest of Fort Worth and 8 miles south of the Red River, which forms the Oklahoma-Texas state line. Coordinates: 34°17′44″N 99°44′31″W (map link).
- What are the Medicine Mounds?
The Medicine Mounds, four dolomite mounds southeast of Quanah, are culturally significant to many Comanche, and to the descendants of Quanah Parker. The ranch that currently owns the mounds has invited the Quanah Parker Society to create an event that allows public access to these landmarks while celebrating Comanche culture. Address: 6940 Farm to Market Road 1167, Quanah, TX 79252 (map link).
- Is there a town called Medicine Mound?
Well, there was. It's now known as a ghost town, with just a museum remaining. See the entry in the Texas State Historical Association's Handbook of Texas. The museum is worth visiting, and will be open during portions of the Gathering.
June 17-20 Events and Activities
- What is the 2021 Quanah Parker Medicine Mounds Gathering?
The Quanah Parker Medicine Mounds Gathering is scheduled June 17-20, 2021, at the Medicine Mounds and in Quanah, Texas. It is a project of the Quanah Parker Society and a dedicated team of volunteers from across Texas and Oklahoma, allowing public access to the mounds while celebrating Comanche culture and the history of the city of Quanah.
- How do I see Larry Gatlin in concert?
Come to Quanah on Friday, June 18! Larry Gatlin, known for his work with The Gatlin Brothers and the Grand Ole' Opry, has been adopted into the Parker family with the Comanche name of Tsa Muu Ya Keta. He is performing a concert at the Quanah High School Auditorium on Friday, June 18 at 7:30 PM, with The Red Dirt Rangers and Darby Sparkman. Ticket prices range from $40-$75, with a preshow Meet & Greet at 6:15 ($50, purchased separately). All the proceeds from the concert benefit the Quanah Parker Society & Center in Quanah. Get your tickets now.
- Is this event family-friendly?
Yes! No alcohol, drugs, recreational vehicles/ATVs, or firearms are allowed at the Medicine Mounds site. We plan on having a Native American language tipi, ceremonies, dancing, stories, and campfire activities.
- Are restrooms available?
Portable restrooms will be available at the Medicine Mounds site, and in the city of Quanah.
- Will food be available to purchase?
Food vendors at the Medicine Mounds site include Holy Smokes BBQ, Buffalo Burgers, and the Parker Family (NDN tacos and meatpies). There will also be food vendors in Quanah.
Like free breakfast? Register now for the Friday morning breakfast at the Quanah Country Club.
- Tell me more about camping at the Mounds.
You can register to camp Thursday, June 17 to Sunday, June 21 at the Mounds (cost: $50). The fee is the same whether you are bringing an RV, tent, or tipi. Camping is primitive, off-the-grid boondocking. No electricity, water hookups, or showers available onsite. Cell service may be lacking depending on your carrier. Gray water services are available in Quanah (cost included in camping fee).
- Can I climb one of the mounds?
Originally there was one official mound climb, called "Spiritual Journey to the Medicine Mound," scheduled for 8 AM Saturday, June 20. That event was limited to 100, and registrations filled up very quickly. The ranch manager and the ethnobotanist advising us on how to protect the sensitive nature of the environment have asked that we replace the one guided mound climb with five smaller guided climbs. Those who registered for the original climb have been asked to reschedule to one of the five climbs, which are each limited to 40 participants. As soon as the 100 reschedule, we will open registration to the five new climbs to others.
The five new guided climbs of 40 persons each are scheduled for the mornings of Thursday, Friday, Saturday (2), and Sunday. If you want to be notified when registration is opened, contact us. There will be no opportunity to climb the mound on your own.
On Saturday morning we will gather at the entrance to the camping area for the 6:28 AM sunrise and Spiritual Sunrise Song with Don Parker, spiritual leader and keeper of knowledge from the old ones. Please arrive by 6 AM.
- What is the appropriate attire for the sweat lodge?
Women: Tee shirt and long skirt.
Men: Tee shirt and jeans.
- Is there a fee to attend?
No, there is no overall event fee, but we encourage you to consider joining the Quanah Parker Society as a member to support this and other events. Membership is as low as $3 per month.
Many of the activities are free. Some of these require a reservation so capacity limits can be maintained. See the tickets page for both paid tickets and free reservations.
- Where do I start — in Quanah, or at the mounds?
That's up to you! Check the schedule for the location of events and activities you might want to attend. Events will be added as they are confirmed.
- Is there other lodging nearby if I'm not planning to camp at the Medicine Mounds?
Yes. There are hotels, RV parks, and Airbnb rentals in Quanah (13 miles from the ranch site), as well as in Vernon, TX (31 miles from Quanah, 26 miles from Medicine Mounds campsite); Childress, TX (26 miles from Quanah, 41 miles from campsite); and Altus, OK (40 miles from Quanah, 47 miles from campsite). Copper Breaks State Park, an International Dark Sky Park, is 15 miles from the Medicine Mounds site.
- This sounds great! How can I help?
Volunteers are needed for several days from June 15-20, 2021. Opportunities are available both indoors and outdoors at various venues in downtown Quanah, at the Quanah High School Auditorium, and at the Medicine Mounds campsite. Volunteers are being managed by the E. Eugene Johnson Memorial Foundation in Quanah. To volunteer for this event and to become registered with the foundation for any other future volunteer opportunities in Quanah, please go to https://timecounts.org/eejfoundation/events/31533.