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Canku Ota
(Many Paths)
An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America

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July 2015 - Volume 13 Number 7
 
 
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"Aang"
The Aleut Greeting
Greetings
 
 


Military Macaw (Ars Militaris)

 
 
"Dayamcho yachunne"
Moon when limbs of trees are broken by fruit
Zuni
 
 
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"A Warrior is challenged to assume responsibility, practice humility, and display the power of giving, and then center his or her life around a core of spirituality. I challenge today's youth to live like a warrior."
~Billy Mills~
 
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We Salute
Brad Pitt Foundation

Brad Pitt Foundation Homes Arrive On Reservation. The first five of 20 eco-friendly modular homes arrived on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation and are being set on their foundations this week.

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Our Featured Artist: Honoring Students
New Children's Book Tells The Story Of Oscar Howe

Two South Dakota educators and a Minneapolis-based graphic-designer have teamed up to tell the story of the great Dakota artist Oscar Howe, with the new children's book Native American Master Artist: Oscar Howe.

 
Potter Earns Billy Mills' 'Dreamstarter' Grant

On March 5, Olympic gold medalist Billy Mills announced that Cherokee Nation citizen Breanna Potter was a recipient of a $10,000 “Dreamstarter” grant.

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Our Featured Story: First Person History:
DOI Issues Determination: Pamunkey Becomes No. 567; First Federally Recognized Tribe In Virginia

The Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Kevin K. Washburn issued final determinations today to acknowledge the Pamunkey Indian Tribe as a federally recognized Indian tribe. Additionally the Duwamish Tribal Organization has been denied.

 
History of the
Ottawa and Chippewa Indians of Michigan

Chapter Five
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News and Views Banner
Education News Education News
Setting A Higher Bar

Tribal member graduates WSU ahead of peers after pushing herself through Running Start.

Tribal member Taima Carden graduated from Washington State University with her Bachelor of Arts degree in social sciences with a concentration in psychology, sociology and criminal justice, May 9.

 
Student Wins Fight Over Wearing Sacred Eagle Feather At Graduation

A Native American student declared victory this week in a face-off with Clovis High School after district officials initially barred him from wearing a ceremonial eagle's feather on his cap during graduation.

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Education News Education News
Native PhDs Bring Fresh Approach To Academic Study

Diane Humetewa, a Hopi, made history last year as the first Native American woman to serve as a federal judge. Cassandra Manuelito-Kerkvliet, a Navajo, was ranked in the Top 25 Women in Higher Education for becoming in 2007 the first Native American president of a mainstream university, Antioch University Seattle. Ofelia Zepeda, a Tohono O'odham, is a renowned poet and linguistics expert. She is the author of the first book on the grammar of the Tohono O'odham language. Her work is indispensible toward efforts to revitalize Indigenous languages.

 
Prairie Island Graduation Rate Stunning

Dozens of educators from across the state descended on Prairie Island Indian Community last week for a five-day seminar focused on improving graduation rates and raising cultural awareness to better support Native American students, who continue to struggle with a significant achievement gap in Minnesota and across the country.

The proximity to Red Wing created a dynamic in which locals attendees were viewed as unsuspecting experts, thanks to some surprising statistics.

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Honoring Students Honoring Students
Hoonah Student Chosen For Judson Brown Scholarship

Sealaska Heritage Institute has chosen a Hoonah student as the 2015 recipient of the Judson L. Brown Leadership Award.

The recipient, Amelia "Tlaagoonk" Wilson, is a Chookaneidi (Eagle/Bear), Kaach.adi Yadi (Child of the Raven/Land Otter). She is pursuing a master's degree in rural development at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, College of Rural and Community Development. The $5,000 scholarship goes to students who have demonstrated academic achievement and leadership skills, said SHI President Rosita Worl, adding only one person wins the annual award.

 
Vigil Reports For Duty

Southern Ute tribal member, Jesse Vigil, has new visions set for his future, as he is currently attending the Indian Police Academy in Artesia, NM, just south of Roswell. Vigil will be spending sixteen weeks in training with hopes of being the first Southern Ute officer since 2012.

"The Southern Ute Police Department does not have any tribal officers, so I'm hoping this will open the door for other tribal members to join the force and take care of our people," Vigil stated in an interview before his departure. "My training will consist of book work, use of force, firearms, and the basic police run down."

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Honoring Students Education News
Mohegan Tribe Honors Connecticut's Best Teachers Of 2015

Connecticut’s hard-working teachers got a well-deserved break on June 4 and 5 as the Mohegan Tribe and Mohegan Sun hosted a reception and learning experience for the Connecticut Teacher of the Year Council at various locations on the Mohegan reservation.

The Teacher of the Year Council picked fourteen educators from across Connecticut to be honored as finalists, and ultimately selected Cara Quinn as 2015 Connecticut Teacher of the Year. All of the finalists were all in attendance at the Uncas Ballroom on the night of June 4 for a reception hosted by Beth Regan “Morning Deer” of the Council of Elders, a retired educator herself.

 
Teaching Dakota Language Through Traditional Song, and Football

The Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate 147th Annual Wacipi will be celebrated this coming fourth of July weekend. The historic festival is one of the longest-running annual cultural events within the 50 states. It takes a multi-generational determination to sustain that kind of longevity in the face of long odds, but the SWO has it. The traveler here finds communities that, while small, are as rich in culture as the lands they inhabit are in undulant fields of green. SDPB meets with a few of the many artists, teachers and artisans that make the Oyate a cultural powerhouse on the Plains in the weeks leading up to the Wacipi.

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Living Traditions Living Traditions
Anthropologist Artist Brings Penobscot Artifact To Life

Jennifer Sapiel Neptune — artist, anthropologist, educator and member of the Penobscot Nation — has integrated her myriad skills to intertwine the past and the present, giving life to the future of her community. Her most recent reproduction from Penobscot history was a ceremonial headdress, cuffs and a collar, hand-decorated with intricate beadwork. It took Jennifer hundreds of hours to make the pieces, but the craft was only part of the job. It also was important to infuse the three garments with the spirit of their heritage. So Jennifer embarked upon a journey with them, all over the state of Maine.

 
Navajo Band Teaches Native American Youth How To Write Their Own Songs, Overcome Obstacles

In the eyes of brother-and-sister duo Sihasin, music is a powerful tool with the potential to transform lives -- or that’s their hope, at least.

The Arizona band, comprised of Jeneda and Clayson Benally, plays an unusual brand of music that’s difficult to classify: it incorporates electric bass and modern drums with sounds more typical of their background, growing up as the children of a traditional medicine man in the Navajo Nation. Their father, Jones Benally, sings on some of their songs, which also harken back to their punk roots from their former band, Blackfire.

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Preserving Language Living Traditions
'Keeping Our Language Alive'

The Navajo dubbed version of “Finding Nemo” is moving forward and the leading fish will be played by Steamboat, Ariz.’s Quinton Kien, 11, who will play the voice of “Nemo.”

Natalie Benally, 26, earned the role of “Dory,” while Andrew Harvey will play “Marlin,” Nemo’s dad.

“Finding Nemo” is a Disney animated film about a young clownfish named Nemo who after being captured by a and taken to Sydney, Australia, his father Marlin embarks on an adventure to bring him home.

 
Moccasin: A Traditional Native American Game, Evolving Over Time

Traditional games are one of the draws for people who return year-after-year to the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate Wacipi, which will celebrate its 147th year this fourth of July weekend.

One of those games is Moccasin, also known as Hanpa Apena. Darell Decoteau, a teacher at Tiospa Zina Tribal School teaches students the game as a way of preserving and passing on Dakota culture.

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Living Traditions   Education News
Six-Year-Old Angelo Leaureaux Participates In Gathering Of Nations Hand Drum Contest

Saginaw Chippewa Academy Kindergartener Angelo Leaureaux recently attended North America’s largest powwow, the Gathering of Nations in Albuquerque, N.M., where he participated in the hand drum contest.

The crowd of approximately 15,000 spectators did not deter the little guy, who was eager and adamant that he was going to enter the contest.

The interesting part was that the song he chose was a song by well-known hand drummers Butch & Tone. Mind you, Butch & Tone were both at the event, and Tone actually was a contestant in the hand drum contest as well.

 
Chief Dull Knife College Rocket Team Wins Climate Change Experiment Award

Seven students from Chief Dull Knife College (CDKC), along with three advisors, stood on the sun-drenched prairie of the Richard Bong State Recreation Area in Wisconsin and watched their rockets shoot into the crystal blue sky. Soft white vapor trails tracked the direction of their launches, and the crowds cheered when parachutes ejected from each rocket.

The students, members of the CDKC rocket team, competed in the First Nations Launch, an annual NASA-sponsored competition that seeks to involve Native American students in engineering, physics, and other space-related sciences. For the CDKC team, all their hard work paid off when they won the Climate Change Science Payload portion of the competition.

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Healthy Lifeways  

Living Traditions

Native American Traditional Foods Turn Into Viable Business

Dan Cornelius has been on the road for three months, buying and selling the wares of North America's indigenous communities from Louisiana to New Mexico and Arizona.

From tepary beans grown by the Tohono O'Odham people to chocolate produced by the Chickasaw Nation, Native Americans are entering the niche food market in many places.

Cornelius is a member of the Oneida Nation in Wisconsin and the general manager of the Mobile Farmers Market. The group believes traditional food production can be part of an economic solution for high unemployment and other problems.

 
Traditional Hand Games Open To All

While regalia, dancing and drumming are a focus of the powwow on Saturday night of the three day CPN Family Reunion Festival, Friday night offers attendees an opportunity to compete and win prizes to the beat of a different drum. To participate, all one needs to do is join a team and follow a simple set of instructions.

Though each year many teams are already organized prior to Festival between families, legislative districts and other associations, individual hand game players can still find a team, as an at-large team is always put together the night of the competition. The hand games are a traditional Potawatomi game played between different bands, clans and families and involved wagers placed on each team.

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Artistic Events   Our Neighbors, Our Friends
Native Artist Oscar Howe's Work To Grace Rapid City Exhibit

Rapid City celebrated one of South Dakota's greatest artists Thursday night in honor of the centennial of his birth, but also to memorialize his groundbreaking work.

The 100-year birthday bash for Oscar Howe drew admirers from across the region to celebrate Howe's history and welcome a new local exhibit of his art.

 
Green Bay Pool Project Receives Help From Ho-Chunk Nation

The Ho-Chunk Nation made a donation of $100,000 to the Friends of Colburn Pool on Wednesday, June 17, to help save a Green Bay neighborhood pool.

It started about four years ago when city officials were discussing the closure of the pool because standards were not up to date.

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Healthy Lifeways   Healthy Lifeways
Shakopee Mdewakanton and National Partners Launch $5 Million Campaign To Improve Native American Nutrition

The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community and three nationally significant partners today announced Seeds of Native Health, a major philanthropic campaign to improve the nutrition of Native Americans across the country. The SMSC is committing $5 million to launch the campaign and plans to recruit other funding and strategic partners.

 
Hoopa Community Runs With The Salmon

Hundreds of Hoopa youth and community members ran two-mile sprints along the Klamath River on Friday to represent the spring salmon migration and to raise awareness about the struggles faced by the fish.

The run has been hosted along the river for the past 13 years and was started by students from Hoopa Valley High School in response to the death of an estimated 68,000 Chinook salmon caused by low water levels in 2002, according to a Hoopa Valley Tribal Fisheries press release.

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Artistic Events   Heads Up
Native Printmakers At Fred Jones Museum: Skill And Community On Display

When people think of an artist at work, in many cases those thoughts are of the painter or sculptor, alone, in his or her studio. Yet, not all media is created in this fashion. In many instances, art is a collaborative process—a result of several artists coming together. For those artists involved in printmaking, this is what draws them to the medium. For Navajo artist Melanie Yazzie, what draws her to print making is “the community aspect,” she said, “because usually you’re working in a community shop and sharing equipment with other people. When you come together to print, there’s always time shared with other artists.”

 
A Survey For Veterans

We would like to request your participation with a survey for Native American veterans who may have experienced combat-related stress or know others who have. Our intent with this survey is to increase the body of knowledge about Native American veterans and their attitudes and perceptions towards PTSD and its treatment.  This information will contribute to increasing the body of knowledge about Native American Veterans. Your answers on the survey will be helpful to us in achieving this goal. The Washington State University Institutional Review Board has certified the study as meeting exempt status. All participants and their responses will be kept confidential.

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Artistic Events   Living History
'Super Indian' Takes On The Romantic Stereotypes Of Native Americans

In 1969, a Minnesota-born artist by the name of Fritz Scholder painted a portrait he dubbed "Indian with Beer Can." The image shows a stark figure in sunglasses and a cowboy hat, sitting with his arms crossed and teeth bared before a can of Coors. Unlike many studio paintings that came before it -- the ones that pictured Native Americans as indomitable or mystic figures detached from Whiter society -- Scholder's portrait was mundane, lower class, uncomfortable. It didn't shy away from the taboo of alcoholism in indigenous communities, nor did it cover up America's distaste for acknowledging poverty and alienation in the Indian Nation.

 
Tall Ship Hermione Visits East Coast, Sheds Light On Oneida Involvement In American Revolution

The Oneida Indian Nation forged a great friendship with the Marquis de Lafayette, whom the Oneida called "Kayewla" or "Great Warrior," back in 1778. This relationship, and the role the Oneida Nation had as America's First Allies, comes to light this summer as Lafayette's Hermione Voyage 2015, an authentically reconstructed tall ship which serves as a history exhibit, sets sail.

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Living Traditions   Healthy Lifeways
Wa Nah Zhi, The Whip Man

Among the ancient teachings and abundant wisdoms those ancient Osages have handed down to Osages of today there is found concept of Order. Without Order there is confusion, the Old Ones have told us. In today's world there is nowhere a more clear and living definition of order exists than at In-Lon-Schka.It was well over a century ago the Ponca and Kaw people gave to the Osage People the three In-Lon-Schka Drums. Those three Drums have experienced much that is good and positive in mankind.

 
Catching The Dream Of The Ute Mountain Ute Tribe -- A Glimmer Of Hope In A Native 'National Emergency'

"When Chairman Heart of the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe gave us the Dreamcatcher at the end of the retreat, I felt like I had just won a lifetime achievement award! I think this event may have changed my life forever," said Beverly Santicola, the organizer of the Ute Mountain Native National Partnership Retreat.

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Education News   Nature News
Let's Move Initiative Celebrates Five Years

Students from the Oglala Sioux Tribe joined First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House on Wednesday to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Let's Move! initiative.

Avianna Garcia, 9, and Gabriel Brooks, 10, shared a lot of face time with the first lady as representatives of the Child Care and Development Program on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. They also acted as ambassadors of Let's Move! In Indian Country, a multi-agency effort aimed at reducing rates of obesity among American Indian and Alaska Native children.

 
Hoksichekpa, Wanahca Ta Unciers
Prairie Crocus, Grandmother Of The Flowers

The Prairie Crocus is known by many names: Pasque/Passover Flower, Easter Flower, or Wind Flower. The Lakota know this same flower as Hoksichekpa, or "Child's Navel," for it resembled a child's navel in the process of healing after the umbilical cord has fallen off.

One of the legends associated with this flower is that long ago, it was white.

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Living Traditions   Living Traditions
TSHA' THONSWATHA':
The Journey To A New Firehouse

World War II just ended. The men have returned from overseas back to the Nation. From their experiences during the war, they expressed to our community the need for a fire department.

"We started fundraising right away," said Sam Babcock, the Nation's first fire chief who is 85 years young. "We held 50/50 drawings, turkey shoots, and raffles. It was a real community effort. Right away our Ladies Auxiliary began supporting us with first aid classes and even socials."

 
NAUís All-Navajo Team Strikes Gold At Nationals

Northern Arizona University's all-Navajo Recurve archery team captured the national championship at the recent 2015 United States Intercollegiate Archery Championships at Newbery, Fla.

The Recurve team consists of Emmett Tsosie of Steamboat, Ariz., Reuben Kee of Holbrook, Ariz., and Matthew Yazzie of Many Farms, Ariz.

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Nature News   Living History
Twenty Stunning Views Along The Great Inka Road

The Inka Road stretches over 24,000 miles through six modern-day countries: Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, and Chile. It stands among the great feats of engineering in world history, serving as a network that linked Cusco (in modern-day Peru) with the far reaches of the Inka empire. The Inka road ranges over mountains, tropical lowlands, rivers and deserts and is still crucial in uniting contemporary Andean communities.

 
Brave Woman Counts Coup
Hunkpapa Woman Remembered

Over a hundred years ago, when the Seven Council Fires ("Sioux") were still living in Minnesota, there was a Teton band of Hunkpapa at Spirit Lake under an chief called Tawa Makoche (His Country). It was his country too, Indian Country, until the white soldiers with their cannon finally drove the Teton across the Missouri River.

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Living History   Our Neigbors, Our Friends
Siblings Help Train
'Remember The Removal' Cyclists

Sarah and Layne Holcomb look like all the other cyclists airing up tires, filling water bottles and checking brakes as they prepare in the Cherokee Nation Tribal Complex parking lot for another day of training.

The sister and brother from Vian are not among the 12 cyclists who will retrace the Trail of Tears through Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri and Arkansas before returning to Oklahoma, but they are helping ensure the cyclists are ready for their June trip.

 
Imagining Reconciliation: Bemidji Group Works Toward Common Ground

A grassroots movement led by people in the town of Bemidji, Minnesota, and their neighbors both on and off nearby reservations have set out to find a path to reconciliation between whites and American Indians. No government is taking part; no plan has been laid; no blame will be assessed; and no one knows how long this journey might take.

"Truth and reconciliation is not an event," says Dr. Anton Treuer, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, one of the people facilitating the process. "It's not something that happens in a week, a month or a year. It's a process and it might take a really long time.

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Education News   Healthy Lifeways
Picturing Artists Differently

Quick, name three Navajo painters.

If you’re like most people in these parts, you probably came up with R.C. Gorman, Harrison Begay and Gerald Nailor. Have you even heard of Sierra Edd, Winona Dawn-House or Elizabeth Whitethorne-Benally? If not, you just proved Navajo artist Venaya Yazzie’s point. The Diné may be a matrilineal society, but when it comes to art, the men get all the press.

 
Changing Our Environment To Support Healthy Food Choices

We know that the path towards a healthier lifestyle begins with eating the right kinds of food and exercising. We know this, but how many people are honestly making changes in their diets which will impact their bodies in a good way if our environment does not support or provide healthy food choices?

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In Every Issue Banner
About This Issue's Greeting - "Aang"

Aleut is the only language of the Aleut branch of Eskaleut language family.

Aleut is spoken both in Russia (the Commodore Isles) and in the USA (the Aleutian Isles and the Pribilov Isles). There are about 700 Aleuts in Russia (190 of them can speak Aleut), and about 2100 — 5000 Aleuts in the USA, according to different researchers. Only 525 Aleuts in the USA are native speakers of Aleut.
Nature's Beauty:
Military Macaw
 
This Issue's Web sites
 
A Story To Share:
Origin of the
Raven and Macaw
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Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107.
 
 
Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000 - 2015 of Vicki Williams Barry and Paul Barry.
 

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