This past weekend, I took a trip to New York—along with 140 other Boiseans including Mayor Dave Bieter—for the opening of the Boise Basque Museum's exhibit “Hidden in Plain Sight: The Basques" at Ellis Island. Here's a little recap of what went down on Saturday, Feb. 6, the official unveiling of the exhibit.
Bleary-eyed, we boarded the bus at 7:45 a.m. on Saturday morning and wound our way out of flashy Times Square down to Battery Park. As flurries of snow swirled around the tired, huddled masses waiting for the ferry to Ellis Island, we noted the irony with a shiver.
Once on the ferry, groups of Basques from Boise, New York and even Spain chattered excitedly, struggling to gain their sea legs.
We disembarked on Ellis Island and scurried into the warm building.
Before the exhibit's official unveiling, the Biotzetik Basque Choir and the Oinkari Basque Dancers performed for the gathering crowd.
After speeches by Guillermo Echenique, general secretary of foreign action of the Basque government; Boise mayor Dave Bieter, Patricia Lachiondo, president of the Basque Museum and Cultural Center and William Douglass, coordinator emeritus of Basque studies at the University of Nevada, Reno, it was finally time for the ribbon cutting.
Here's a peep at what the exhibit looks like inside.
After the opening ceremonies were finished, we had a break before the fancy all-night feast and dance party in SoHo. Man, anyone who thinks Basques don't know how to party are sorely mistaken. The wine over-floweth, the food kept on coming and Amuma Says No played into the wee hours of the morn. Heck, even my grandma didn't leave the dancefloor 'til 2 a.m.