Visiting the past in DeFuniak Springs

DEFUNIAK SPRINGS, Al. (WTVY) -- The annual Florida Chautauqua Assembly is happening Thursday through Sunday in DeFuniak Springs, Florida.

Annual Chautauqua Assembly in DeFuniak Springs

The 4-day educational program includes free exhibits, keynote speakers, and breakout sessions.

Kevin Chilcutt and his family have been exhibiting the life of the pioneers for 17 years teaching children what life was like before technology.

"Your grandparents, greats and great-greats, they settled this land and it was hard” Chilcutt said.

The Florida Pioneer Family teaches kids how their ancestors used to gather and cook food in order to survive; techniques that could be useful in case of an emergency.

"If we had another hurricane, my family, we could take and gather up stuff and get a fire going, find a source of water, and do” Chilcutt explained.

Kevin's son, Travis, teaches children about the tools and weapons pioneers once used to hunt and survive when there were no grocery stores to buy food.

"I think that it's important that people know where their food comes from" said Travis Chilcutt.

Although Travis has a passion for history, his favorite thing to teach kids is about the cracker whip which was once used to herd cattle in West Florida.

"Everything about this tool is unique to this area. That goes back into what i was talking about. The way it's designed, the way it was used is specifically for West Florida, for the Wiregrass" Travis said.

For the kids that visit the Chautauqua Assembly every year, the Florida Pioneer Family is always one of their favorite exhibits.

"My favorite part was the weapons, what they used to hunt 'what did they use to hunt?' with knives and little axes and they used to take the skin off of animals” said elementary schooler, Audrey Weeks.

The Florida Chautauqua Assembly is going on Friday until 9pm, Saturday from 9am until 9pm, and Sunday from 8am to 3pm.



 
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