Once a month, every third Saturday, the Kumeyaay-Ipai Interpretive Center in Poway opens to the public.
Today I enjoyed a tour of the archaeological site and its educational visitor center. I was surprised to find so much history preserved in this small island of natural beauty just off Poway Road.
Poway is derived from the Native American Kumeyaay word Pauwai, which means the shape of an arrowhead or the merging of two creeks. A short distance to the south is Poway Creek.
As you will see in the following photographs, a small Kumeyaay village of approximately 20 families once lived on the hill that I and my docent tour guide, Heidi, explored.
The Kumeyaay people have lived in this region for at least 10,000 years. These first people had their lives severely disrupted with the arrival of Europeans in 1769. Today, descendants of those who lived in Pauwai are members of the San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians.
Please enjoy the following photos to get a taste of what you might discover when you visit. Read the captions for a few of the things I learned.
Are you a local history or anthropology enthusiast? Or a community-minded person who loves the outdoors? The Kumeyaay-Ipai Interpretive Center is always looking for volunteers!
Check out their Facebook page and learn about the special days and hours when you can visit here.