Koshare Indian Kiva Museum

Koshare celebrates the 100th Anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America

Join us as we continue to connect the past with the future at the Koshare Indian Museum!

P. O. Box 580, 115 W 18th Street, La Junta CO 81050, 719-384-4411

Open daily 10:00 AM- 5:00 PM Monday and Wednesday open until 9:00 PM, closed on Major Holidays.

$5 for adults, $3 for youth 7-17 and seniors 55+ , 6 & under - FREE

Group prices (groups of 10 or more) - $3 for adults and $2 for youth and
senior groups.
Available: Hotel accommodations & Guided tours, call for more information.

The Koshare (Clown) at left is by the late J. Michael Standing Bear of LaJunta Pueblo, New Mexico.

The Museum has launched its online store. You can now shop online, at the above link, for authentic Native American pots, jewelry, kachinas, books and more.


Museum Exhibits

Thanks to the support and overwhelming enthusiasm of our museum visitors and the generosity of our talented artists, the museum continues to feature a plethora of works from a variety of artists.



Winter & Summer Ceremonials

The famed Koshare Indian Dancers will perform authentic Pueblo Indian dancers during its Winter & Summer Ceremonials. The price of a ticket includes free entrance into the Museum. Show dates are scheduled for days right after Christmas and New Years Day and during the months of June, July and August. Please go to their site to check for show dates. Koshare Indian Museum
Ticket prices are $8/adult and $5/student (3 to 17 years old) No reservations are required. Come early for seats and to view the Museum.

Museum admission free with show fee!



The Ben Wittick Exhibit

The Museum will be hosting the exhibit courtesy of the A. R. Mitchell Museum and Gallery of Trinidad, Colorado. Ben Wittick, for over 25 years from 1878 until his death in 1903, photographed the Indian world of the Southwest. Wittick's photographs document the closing days of the Southwest frontier, a time of irrevocable change for the Indian people. This exhibit features field studies and posed portraits which capture the historical, cultural and psychological realities of this transitional era.






The Founder of the Koshare Dancers

James Francis "Buck" Burshears (1903-1987) was a man of vision. Raised in a railroad family in La Junta, Colorado, Buck was surrounded by connections and the possibilities that stem from diverse groups coming together, such as East meeting West via the railroad, Native Americans meeting Europeans at Bent's Old Fort. After graduating from Colorado College in 1933, Buck began to create a connection between his love for Scouting with his interest in Native American culture. For over 50 years, Buck built Boy Scout Troop 232, the Koshare Indian Dancers, and the Koshare Indian Museum from the ground up. Buck saw that where the past connects with the future lies a wealth of opportunity.



Just what is a Koshare?

Koshares are not a tribe, but they are an integral part of Pueblo society. During dances, these black-and-white striped characters portray unacceptable behavior and provide entertainment while reinforcing community values. Buck thought the name was appropriate for his group of boys and so he named them the Koshare Indian Dancers. The Koshare Indian Dancers are the members of Boy Scout Troop 232 and Venturing Crew 230 of the Rocky Mountain Council, Boy Scouts of America. For over 65 years, they have entertained people during summer and winter performances and other shows at home, as well as across the nation.



From the start of a boys group came a diverse collection that offers a unique visit for all!

The diverse collection offers a unique visit for all. The Koshare Indian Museum houses an extensive collection of Indian painting and artifacts. The late J.F. "Buck" Burshears started the Koshare Dancers and museum collection in 1933. The collection connects Buck's interest in Native American culture and his desire to educate the Koshare Indian Dancers. Over The museum and library provide a tremendous resource in terms of local, regional, and national perspective. View the renowned collection of Plains and Southwest art and artifacts including basketry, pottery, weapons, jewelry, paintings, sculptures, and textiles. The library contains many unique, first edition and out of print books relating to Native American history, crafts, and stories.


You are invited to visit and experience first-hand the uniqueness of a Boy Scout program that built a Museum. The museum houses a Kiva Trading Post which offers a variety of Native American art of very high quality, most of which can be purchased directly from the artists. It offers an excellent selection of Native American prints, pots, jewelry, baskets, kachinas, and other items. Native American video and audio tapes, as well as books on tribal traditions and languages are available. Thanks to the generosity of the late William McKenzie, the Trading Post is also a regional Scout distribution center, well stocked with uniform and other Scouting items in the William R. McKenzie Scout Center.

The Koshare Indian Museum is located 18 block south of Highway 50 (First Street) on the campus of Otero Junior College. It is easily reached by heading south on Colorado Avenue to 18th Street then one block west.




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