President’s Message through June 2011

Submitted by Catherine Long (sgapres@thesga.org)

Welcome summer! I hope this message finds you well and enjoying a relaxed and hot summer here in Georgia. Hopefully you were able to attend SGA’s Spring Meeting on May 14th—the membership and general public participated in an educational meeting full of Civil War archaeology and recent archaeology research as well as a weekend full of fun activities. For all the details please see Tammy Herron’s article on the fantastic event. Annual meetings are a great way to catch up with colleagues and have the opportunity to stay in touch with ongoing research in Georgia archaeology.

The success of the Spring Meeting and the related weekend’s activities would not have been possible without the support of several key individuals. The logistics, planning and execution of this meeting were planned by Tammy Herron. The Silent Auction efforts were well-organized by Leslie Perry who was supported by Rita Elliott and others. The registration table was manned by Pam Baughman and Lynn Pietak and copies of Frontiers in the Soil were sold by Kelly Woodard and her friend Jenna (click here for info on ordering your copy!). Everyone who pitched in to assist in the set-up and breakdown of this event are also thanked too! Make sure you Save the Date for the Fall Meeting in Athens on Saturday, October 22. Details will follow shortly.

The Society for Georgia Archaeology often gets emails inquiring about volunteer opportunities—there are great ways to get involved all across the state. How is the best way to learn about what is available? Check in with a SGA Chapter—there are local Chapters across the state that provide close to home opportunities to not only learn about archaeology through guest speakers but some groups work with other organizations to participate in excavations, research, and preservation of archaeological sites. For the beginner archaeologist or professional archaeologist these Chapters are great avenues to meet others who share similar interests and passions.

Additional opportunities include public outreach when you can help promote the importance of learning about past cultures through the study of archaeology and building an awareness of Georgia’s rich archaeological sites and how to protect them. You never know when you may impact someone’s life and help them become a future archaeologist or a future leader who may play a key role in determining resources and impacts to cultural resources.

Two such volunteer opportunities are coming up. The first is the 17th annual CoastFest program in Brunswick that is sponsored by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, which is the first Saturday of October (October 1st). We invite you to lend a hand as this event draws thousands of people each year. What a great opportunity to promote Georgia archaeology! Board Members and professional archaeologists will be in attendance to provide the public with hands-on activities and information.

The second volunteer chance is to assist with the Georgia National Fair in Perry from October 6–16. Talk about a fun time (especially the attractions and food)—help staff the ArchaeoBus and provide engaging activities to thousands of Georgians. Students and families alike participated last year and enjoyed meeting Abby.

These opportunities provide the general public and especially children the chance to learn more about how archaeology happens, what can be learned and how we can all work together to protect Georgia’s archaeological sites. If you are looking for a way to become involved in the SGA and you enjoy working with people these are two important events to check out! For more information please check the website or email me.

In closing, I cannot say enough about the volunteers associated with the Society for Georgia Archaeology. The men and women who have given of their time and talents over the years deserve much applause and recognition. The efforts of producing a scholarly journal, innovative and engaging website, e-newsletter, Archaeology Month, ArchaeoBus, public outreach/education, advocacy, awards, and more have led to the establishment of a valuable organization. Please know that your volunteer efforts are gratefully appreciated and are needed to continue the mission and vision of the Society for Georgia Archaeology. We cordially invite you to participate with this team and consider how you would like to serve.

Catherine Long, SGA President