Friday, January 5, 2018

SRAC Reaches Mark for Sowinski Research Center Matching Grant Challenge!

(WAVERLY, NY) The Susquehanna River Archaeological Center of Native Indian Studies, (SRAC) has announced that it has recently met the goal set for the “SRAC Barbara Sowinski Matching Grant Initiative.”  The Grant Initiative was put in place by Sowinski in order to try to help the Center raise funds by reaching out to the community and raising $10,000 at which point she would match their funds to make the total fundraiser $20,000.

SRAC Co-founder and director, Deb Twigg stated, "I want to personally thank Barbara Sowinski for the opportunity to take part in the $20,000 matching grant challenge. We made our match thanks to so many of you in the community who gave what you could to get us to our $10,000 mark. It's the community minded folks that volunteer and donate to our communities that have made all of the difference in the survival and success of our small non-profits. Thank You."

The grant was an opportunity for the organization to raise $20,000 for their Center’s second floor renovations that will house a Research Center (laboratory, storage and education area) for the Center. Local philanthropist and SRAC member, Barbara Sowinski decided to offer this fundraising opportunity after visiting the SRAC annual event “DrumBeats Through Time” last month and realizing the importance of the work that SRAC is doing – and especially their need to be able to process and study the results of their ongoing archaeological excavation work in the area.

Twigg continued, "Because of the funds raised, we will be moving forward with our SRAC Research Center on our second floor. If you would like to volunteer to help us move furniture, and do some of the light construction, please contact me. This is a huge step in our evolution and will allow us to do the important research that needs to be done in our area and finally answer the many unanswered questions about the pre-Iroquoian / Proto-Susquehannock cultures of our region." Twigg can be reached for more information by email at dtwigg@SRACenter.org.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Update on the Barbara Sowinki Matching Grant Challenge

I wanted to give all of you an update on the Barbara Sowinski Matching Grant Challenge. As of today we are within reach of our goal and just need a little more help to put us over the top!

We were blessed by having Patty Merril Brunk show up by chance with a car load of laboratory equipment donated by her employer, Midwestern Pet Foods in Waverly, NY.  It was a gift out of nowhere that really had a big effect on our grant status, as Barbara allowed us to take $5,000 of the $10,000 goal for us to reach in six months.



We also were blessed to have all of you who have donated and shared our info with others asking them to donate. Within the first month we have already raised $3,600.00 in cash donations!

So at this point we are at around $7,750 with just  $2,250 to go to make our $10,000 and get ANOTHER $10,000 for making the challenge!  So I am asking you to help us make the push to make a HUGE Christmas present for SRAC and help us get to that $10,000 mark.

Thanks Everybody! I'll keep you updated as we continue this challenge!


Hi everybody! I just wanted to share this important announcement with you that will be in the newspaper in the coming days. Simply put, we have been challenged to come up with $10,000 in order to get another $10,000 (for a total of $20,000) in order to build our second floor space into the research, lab and storage areas that we so desperately need. Up to $5,000 of that $10,000 we need to raise can be "in-kind" donations, that being building supplies, lab furniture and equipment, and other physical items we can use to build or use in our new area. Please spread the word, and try to help us reach this goal. I appreciate all you do!

Donate to the Barbara Sowinski Matching Grant Initiative here:  

(Waverly, NY) The Susquehanna River Archaeological Center of Native Indian Studies, (SRAC) is announcing a funding opportunity for their nonprofit organization, the “SRAC Barbara Sowinski Matching Grant Initiative.” The grant is an opportunity for the organization to raise $20,000 for their Center’s second floor renovations that will house a laboratory, storage and education area for the Center. Local philanthropist and SRAC member, Barbara Sowinski decided to offer this fundraising opportunity after visiting the SRAC annual event “DrumBeats Through Time” last month and realizing the importance of the work that SRAC is doing – and especially their need to be able to process and study the results of their ongoing archaeological excavation work in the area.

For the past two years, SRAC has undertaken the excavation and documentation of a Native American site that dates to around 1050 A.D. in an area that is being impacted by modern land use and construction along the Susquehanna River. In the summer and fall of 2016, individuals came together, guided by professional archaeologists and scholars, to excavate portions of a prehistoric village. Pottery specimens, broken stone implements, traces of food debris, and other snapshots of the original people of this place and space were recovered. Work is now continuing with cataloging and analyzing these materials. However, without the laboratory facilities available at the Center, the work and depth of research available has been hindered.

With the need for laboratory space in mind, Sowinski met with SRAC’s executive director, Deb Twigg recently to discuss her funding offer of a matching grant.  The stipulations of the grant is that Sowinski would personally donate $10,000 to raise a total of $20,000 for the second floor laboratory space for the Center if SRAC can match the offered $10,000 funding. However, if the Center cannot raise $10,000, she would not make a donation towards the project. Twigg explains, “Barbara’s offer of this generous amount is amazing and challenging at the same time. As many of you know we are a small organization with all volunteer staffing and work on a shoestring budget of less than $5,000. At the same time SRAC has undergone huge growth over our first decade and our next step is the laboratory facilities for our Center. We are truly amazed that we now have an opportunity to get funding for this. I can’t thank Barabara Sowinski enough for her continued support, but at the same time cannot stress enough that without the community’s help in raising the first $10,000, none of this will be possible.” Twigg also noted that ‘In-kind” donations such as lab equipment, building supplies, laboratory furniture, and storage equipment can also be used for up to $5,000 of the first $10,000 needed.

Lastly, the grant opportunity has a time limit in which it is available and is no longer available after June 1st, 2018 (6 months). As a result, the public is advised to make their donations as soon as possible to help SRAC reach their goal.  To make a donation to the SRAC Barbara Sowinski Matching Grant Imitative, visit www.SRACenter.org and click the SRAC Giving Campaign or mail or hand deliver your donation to: SRAC, 345 Broad Street, Waverly, NY 14892. All donations are tax deductible as SRAC is a 501C3. If community members have items to donate, please call Deb Twigg at (607)727-3111 or email deb@teaoga.com for more information

Monday, November 27, 2017

SRAC Adds Two Board Members


Sandy Chamberlain
Richard Price
(WAVERLY, NY) The Susquehanna River Archaeological Center (SRAC) located at 345 Broad Street, Waverly, NY announces the addition of two new members to its board , Sandy Chamberlain and Richard Price. 

Sandy Chamberlain from Sayre, PA has been a volunteer in the Center’s gift shop for over a year and has taken on many extra duties as needed. Sandy spent 38 years in the nursing profession and co-founded a nonprofit, “Autism Hearts.” When asked why she joined SRAC’s volunteer workforce Sandy explained, “I was looking for a way to give back to the community, so I answered the call to volunteer. The many people involved with SRAC are like family. The level of professionalism, dedication, knowledge and love for what they do is to be envied. It becomes contagious. I am honored to be even a small part of this group working to preserve our local history.”

Richard Price grew up in Lounsberry NY and his interest in archaeology began in the 1970s while attending college.  Beginning In 1980 he began documenting artifact collections from surface sites near Owego and Nichols NY.  He has been a member of the Triple Cities Chapter of the New York State Archaeological Association and has volunteered at a various archeological site excavations. He joined SRAC in 2017 as a volunteer and experienced excavator and became involved in an ongoing effort to create a powerful database resource using the prehistoric artifacts in the collections housed at SRAC.  “People lived in the Susquehanna River Valley for over 10,000 years before Europeans arrived and there is a tremendous amount of information which we can obtain from the collections at SRAC.   I’m excited about the opportunity to work with local collectors, avocational archaeologists and professional archeologists to develop our database and expand our knowledge about the prehistory of our region.”.

SRAC’s Cofounder and Executive Director, Deb Twigg added, “Any nonprofit in the area realizes the struggle before us to find great volunteers and board members. Our organization actually only enlists board members that have been volunteers at our Center so that we know that their dedication to our mission is already strong.  This also makes our board meetings more team oriented, as they all work together week to week in some fashion already, know each other well and understand the items that are brought to our meetings that we need to make decisions on. As a result finding engaged, hard working, and dedicated people like Richard and Sandy is a big win for SRAC, and we are honored to add them both to leadership positions.”

To learn more about SRAC and their volunteer opportunities, visit SRAC at 345 Broad Street, Waverly, NY, online at www.SRACenter.org or call Deb Twigg at 607-727-3111.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Morning Times article on SRAC

I have lived in this Valley all of my life. It's times like this that you realize what living in a small town community means and how important it can be to you as a member. While some may complain that there is nothing to do, others come together and MAKE something worthwhile. THAT is what has happened at SRAC, and I am blessed to have had the opportunity to be a part of it.

Thank you ALL for all you have done and are doing for our small organization with big dreams, and please consider donating to our matching grant challenge to support our new laboratory facilities! We have a lot more work ahead of us!

Thank you Morning Times and Johnny Williams for such a great article that explains who SRAC is and what are doing for generations to come. (Click the image to read!)



Tuesday, November 14, 2017

SRAC Matching Grant Challenge Underway


Hi everybody! I just wanted to share this important announcement with you that will be in the newspaper in the coming days. Simply put, we have been challenged to come up with $10,000 in order to get another $10,000 (for a total of $20,000) in order to build our second floor space into the research, lab and storage areas that we so desperately need. Up to $5,000 of that $10,000 we need to raise can be "in-kind" donations, that being building supplies, lab furniture and equipment, and other physical items we can use to build or use in our new area. Please spread the word, and try to help us reach this goal. I appreciate all you do!

Donate to the Barbara Sowinski Matching Grant Initiative here:  

(Waverly, NY) The Susquehanna River Archaeological Center of Native Indian Studies, (SRAC) is announcing a funding opportunity for their nonprofit organization, the “SRAC Barbara Sowinski Matching Grant Initiative.” The grant is an opportunity for the organization to raise $20,000 for their Center’s second floor renovations that will house a laboratory, storage and education area for the Center. Local philanthropist and SRAC member, Barbara Sowinski decided to offer this fundraising opportunity after visiting the SRAC annual event “DrumBeats Through Time” last month and realizing the importance of the work that SRAC is doing – and especially their need to be able to process and study the results of their ongoing archaeological excavation work in the area.

For the past two years, SRAC has undertaken the excavation and documentation of a Native American site that dates to around 1050 A.D. in an area that is being impacted by modern land use and construction along the Susquehanna River. In the summer and fall of 2016, individuals came together, guided by professional archaeologists and scholars, to excavate portions of a prehistoric village. Pottery specimens, broken stone implements, traces of food debris, and other snapshots of the original people of this place and space were recovered. Work is now continuing with cataloging and analyzing these materials. However, without the laboratory facilities available at the Center, the work and depth of research available has been hindered.

With the need for laboratory space in mind, Sowinski met with SRAC’s executive director, Deb Twigg recently to discuss her funding offer of a matching grant.  The stipulations of the grant is that Sowinski would personally donate $10,000 to raise a total of $20,000 for the second floor laboratory space for the Center if SRAC can match the offered $10,000 funding. However, if the Center cannot raise $10,000, she would not make a donation towards the project. Twigg explains, “Barbara’s offer of this generous amount is amazing and challenging at the same time. As many of you know we are a small organization with all volunteer staffing and work on a shoestring budget of less than $5,000. At the same time SRAC has undergone huge growth over our first decade and our next step is the laboratory facilities for our Center. We are truly amazed that we now have an opportunity to get funding for this. I can’t thank Barabara Sowinski enough for her continued support, but at the same time cannot stress enough that without the community’s help in raising the first $10,000, none of this will be possible.” Twigg also noted that ‘In-kind” donations such as lab equipment, building supplies, laboratory furniture, and storage equipment can also be used for up to $5,000 of the first $10,000 needed.

Lastly, the grant opportunity has a time limit in which it is available and is no longer available after June 1st, 2018 (6 months). As a result, the public is advised to make their donations as soon as possible to help SRAC reach their goal.  To make a donation to the SRAC Barbara Sowinski Matching Grant Imitative, visit www.SRACenter.org and click the SRAC Giving Campaign or mail or hand deliver your donation to: SRAC, 345 Broad Street, Waverly, NY 14892. All donations are tax deductible as SRAC is a 501C3. If community members have items to donate, please call Deb Twigg at (607)727-3111 or email deb@teaoga.com for more information

Sunday, October 29, 2017

SRAC Drumbeats Through Time a HUGE Success!

I wanted to share with you the report of yesterday's 14th annual DrumBeats Through Time. From all accounts, it was a memory maker on many levels. 

The event started with a huge turnout for our membership luncheon that made us add chairs to an already packed lecture hall. We were delighted to have in our attendance people who traveled as far away as the Wilsons from Pittsburgh, PA, and two NYS Archaeology chapters from the Oneonta region as well. We also had in attendance many local members and friends that have been with us since our inception and some who also have just recently discovered us. 

It was my honor to present SRAC's history from our big dreams and writing ideas around a kitchen
table one night to how far we have come since then. I had Dr. DeeAnne Wymer, Dan Caister and Richard Price all report on our most recent work from our internship program with Bloomsburg University and excavation to collections database work. We all elaborated on the fact that we are in dire need of donations to allow us to build a state of the art lab area for us to allow real scientific research to take place under our roof.




The luncheon ended with a tribute to our own Ted Keir whom we lost this year. His widow Evelyn and kids were in attendance as we revealed a large plaque that will be placed in our Woolly Mammoth exhibit of which Ted was the guiding force behind. SRAC Co-Founder Dick Cowles also spoke about Ted and his leadership at SRAC, saying it was Ted's commitment and valor that was so endearing in our organization. I agreed wholeheartedly with Dick's eloquent and perceptive tribute to our dear friend. The membership luncheon event closed with a small powerpoint that I made in Ted's honor. Tears and hugs were shared all around...

Can't see it? click this link: https://youtu.be/SelIOm6SMAo

Here are pictures from the rest of the days events - If you missed them, I posted them live on SRAC's Facebook page, but their quality is pretty poor. Try to attend next year to see all that we pack into one amazing day in person! For those of you that attended - thank you for spending your day with us - we really enjoy putting this annual event on for you and hope to see you again next year!