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Upcoming Events


Printing Making Exchange: Oil and Water Art Show

6-swenson_thepromiseofsuccessandthepromiseofdestructionOil and Water traveling art show, brought to the MonDak by the North Dakota Art Gallery Directors Association and the Montana Art Gallery Directors Association. Oil and Water: concerning the use or misuse of our natural resources.  Whether dealing with issues of flooding and diversion in the Red River Valley or oil development and fracking on the Bakken Oil Formation, printmaking students and faculty from Concordia College, Minnesota State University Moorhead, Minot State University, North Dakota State University, University of Manitoba, University of North Dakota and Valley City State University tackle challenging issues through the fascinating medium of printmaking.  The portfolio was first exhibited at the Plains Art Museum in Fargo, North Dakota from April 6th through May 12th.  A print exchange took place on April 6th, where students exchanged portfolio prints and presented their work to the public.  The project was coordinated by Heidi Goldberg, Kent Kapplinger, and John Volk.

Clint Whitmer- Oil Production Photography

original.pngClint Whitmer will have oil production photography on exhibit at the MonDak starting June 7th and running through August 27th. The exhibit is free and open to the public Tuesday through Friday from 10 am to 4 pm and Saturdays 1 pm to 4 pm.

Courage Enough Has Been Reprinted !!

medium front cover                   Courage Enough II has arrived! Hot off the presses is the reprinted edition of Courage Enough II Courage Enough Book II is a continuation of the MonDak family histories collection originally published during the nation's bicentennial. This reprint of the second edition traces the personal lives of the pioneering families of the MonDak from 1925-1960 and was originally published in 1996. Available now for $35     Courage Enough I coming soon! Courage Enough I traces the personal lives of the pioneering families of the MonDak, those who had courage enough to settle homesteads and build towns on the last few free acres in the West and was originally published in 1975

Book Release

Sidney Book Cover small               The latest book in Arcadia Publishing's series The Images Of America. This series celebrates the history of neighborhoods, towns and cities across the country. using archival photographs, this book presents distinctive stories from the past that shaped the character of the community of Sidney today. The book contains over 200 vintage photographs from the archives of the MonDak Heritage Center. Join us on Friday, July 29th from 6-7 pm for the release of the book and a chance to talk about the project with Leann Pelvit of The MonDak Heritage Center. We previously announced that co-author Kim Simmonds would be present Friday evening as well, but a scheduling conflict has arisen and Kim will not be in attendance.

Makoshika Documentary Screening

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Join us on August 11th at 7:00 pm for a special free screening of the documentary "Makoshika" A portrait of a fascinating American region undergoing a huge transformation.

Jessica Jane Hart

Directed by Jessica Jane Hart, a Montana native who studied photography at Northwest College in Powell, Wyoming.

After graduating in 2006 she moved to Munich Germany to work as a freelance assistant to photographers Elias Hassos, Anja Frers and Matthias Ziegler. In 2009 she returned to the US and has been working as a freelance photographer in Montana, New York and California. In 2013 she began work on her first documentary film project, Makoshika which was completed in July of 2015.


This award winning film was an Official Selection at The Big Sky Documentary Film festival 2016, The Venice Film Week, the Environmental Film Festival 2016, was A Silver Award Winner at the Spotlight Documentary Film Awards 2015 and was named Best Heritage Film at Tribute Film Festival 2016.


A rugged stretch of badlands crossing through Montana and North Dakota, has always been a challenging place to live, but it has been sustained by a series of dramatic economic events, from the homestead boom to successive waves of oil development. Today, another oil boom is again transforming the region; small farm towns where residents once left their doors unlocked are overrun with workers vying for jobs in the oil fields, camper trailers  sprawl across rural landscapes, and tight-knit farming  communities inflate into boomtowns. Makoshika weaves together a story of the diverse communities and intriguing characters experiencing this boom, while using the region's history as a backdrop for understanding today.

What Jessica learned about all the changes occurring in the region as a result of the recent oil boom and the effect on the area and it's residents "... made us decide to create Makoshika, with the goal of painting a more complete picture of what is currently taking place today, following an array of characters from different perspectives as they negotiate the changes unfolding around them as well as their own histories and values. By looking into the history of the region and allowing the folks who occupy the landscape today to share their experiences both past and present, we aimed to create a truer picture of this unique and historic event."

See the trailer at http://www.makoshikadoc.com/


Monica Tininenko Night Life Photography Exhibit

indexNight Life, a photography exhibit by Monica Tininenko, will be on display at the MonDak Heritage Center September 1 through October 1, 2016. The museum is free and open to the public Tuesday through Friday, 10am to 4pm, and Saturdays 1pm to 4pm. Monica Tininenko Artist Statement: Art is something to everyone.  Art is a way for me to relax, to learn, to express, and to concentrate.  The process of creating art is as important as the final product. Photography is my most common way of capturing things I feel are important to share and how I express my love of life.  The fact that there are so many photographers today can be discouraging to a beginning artist, but that hasn’t stopped me from creating images and sharing them with whoever is willing to look. It can take a great deal of courage to share one’s work with the world, but once you start, it can be hard to stop!

The Graveyard Speaks: The Pathos of Ghost Town Cemeteries

picture19The MonDak Heritage Center will host The Graveyard Speaks: The Pathos of Ghost Town Cemeteries by artist Lee Silliman September 1 through December 1, 2016. The exhibit is free and open to the public Tuesday through Friday, 10am to 4pm, and Saturdays, 1pm to 4pm. This exhibit explores the final page of our ineluctable passage.  In his travels throughout Montana and other western states to old mining camps and ghost towns, black and white photographer Lee Silliman seeks out their abandoned cemeteries, for these hallowed grounds are a palpable record of the former community’s struggle for life.  He ferrets out those monuments – stone and wooden – which reveal our forebears’ tribulations, as well as their fervent hopes for eternal reunion with loved ones.  All too often children’s headstones dot the enclosure, for until the last 100 years, humankind marshaled but feeble resistance to the onslaught of childhood diseases.  Indeed, the expressions of grief chiseled upon the multitude of headstones of deceased children are most heartrending – and there was no balm. By utilizing an 8”x10” view camera loaded, by making nuanced 8”x10” contact prints in his own darkroom, and by framing these results in his own picture frame shop, the photographer has sought to create an attractive union of art and history.

Joan Bird “Montana UFOs”

joan bird2The MonDak Heritage Center will host the Humanities Montana Speakers Bureau program “Montana UFOs and Extraterrestrials” with Joan Bird on Friday, September 9, 2016 at 7pm. The presentation is free and open to the public.  Partial funding for the Speakers Bureau program is provided by a legislative grant from Montana’s Cultural Trust and the National Endowment for the Humanities. While many UFO sightings can be conventionally explained, a small percentage of reports remain unexplained in both government and private investigations. Montana is home to some of the most significant, well-documented, and interesting UFO reports in the history of ufology. Bird gives a short course in UFO literacy, using Montana events to illustrate different aspects of the phenomenon. Montana seems to be a place where there is a lot of historical UFO activity. The audience is invited to share their own or their family's stories. Joan Bird is an author and researcher. She holds a Ph.D. in zoology. Sponsored by Humanities Montana.

Visit Us

Events & Exhibits

Find out what’s happening at the MonDak Heritage Center and learn about our permanent and rotating art exhibits, and the MonDak Pioneer Town.


Our education programs designed for children ages 1 year – 5th grade are a great way to expose your children to art and history, and fun too!


If you are looking for information about the history of the MonDak region and the people who called it home, you have come to the right place.