Working with community
In the beginning, when the Desert Park was just an idea and a dream of a few people, the conversation was started with the Apmereke-artweye (Traditional Owners). The site is of significant cultural importance to the people of this land, the Arrernte people, and includes parts of the Akngwelye Artnwere and Yeperenye Altyerre (Wild Dog and Caterpillar dreaming stories).
Alice Springs Desert Park provides a sensitive and realistic insight into Aboriginal culture by display, interpretation and presentation of the traditional use of plants and animals and with regular liaison with the Apmereke-artweye. This ongoing process has resulted in the traditional custodians of the park site experiencing a strong sense of pride and ownership in the attraction.
'People wonder what it is that is so special here and it is because everything comes here. We connect to it, we're a part of it. Our Country is our home, and we know all the sites and all the features, our rocks, our trees, our hills. We come up with our Country. We come up with it and feel it so strongly.'
Doris Kngwarraye Stuart - Apmereke-artweye - Mparntwe (Alice Springs) Custodian