Canku Ota - A Newsletter Celebrating Native America
September 9, 2000 - Issue 18

"Aquay "




Full Harvest Moon


"We only ask to survive so that we can remain who and what we are - and for that we will always thank the Creator. We ask only the chance to pass on our way of life and our love for the Creator to our children and grandchildren."
Harriett Starleaf Gumbs

Rodney Grant

Rodney A. Grant is a well known celebrity in the Native Community. A Native American actor who is in support of Native American issues and is always willing to speak for the Native American people. He stands up for the youth of today and supports many charitable organizations. His concern about the youth and elders out in the reservations has taken him on many trips to these reservations, to take care of the people. At the First Americans in the Arts Awards held in San Francisco earlier in the year, he expressed his discontent in not seeing many celebrities out there, on his many trips, to the Rez. He brought his son on the stage to accept one of his awards.


National Native American Holiday

Native Americans from all over the United States have joined in an effort to have Congress enact a national Native American Holiday.


School News

The information here will include items of interest for and about Native American schools. If you have news to share, please let us know! I can be reached by emailing:


Medicine Dream

Take the drum journey - feel the earth, free the spirit and honor your ancestors - as you travel with the rhythms of Medicine Dream's Native drum. The intertribal group's synergy, 10 musicians strong, create a spiritual-musical fusion - each beat of the drum is salve for the soul.


Message of Home
American Indian Elders Deliver Wishes for Future

Some 2,000 American Indian elders crafted a message in Duluth and delivered to America.

They believe the United States needs peace, love and health and is losing those values, according to the message.



Native American Music Finally Getting Recognized

For years, Native American music has been relegated to the folk, world and new age bins at record stores across the country.

Or it would be tossed into the international or world-beat files -- a regrettable irony, since the music is about as American as you can get.


Tribal Radio Making Its Mark on the National Level

When sound waves from KABU (90.7) bounce over the broad back of Devils Lake, travelers new to the area might do a double take at the drum sounds that fill their car. This low-powered radio station is only one of some 40 Native stations throughout the nation and Alaska. That drum music only -- barely -- begins to tell us what Indian radio is.



The Art of Learning

PENDLETON, Ore. - Decked out in black, from his short-brimmed felt hat to his Italian shoes, Tim Rollins has sauntered into Pendleton looking as if he's starring as "the stranger" in a spaghetti Western.

He could be a card shark or maybe a traveling salesman, but what he calls himself is even more suspect: "a conceptual artist whose medium is education." He's come to the United Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla to make a painting. The subject is Shakespeare. And the materials he's using are watercolors, fine paper and about a dozen kids.


And the Nominees Are..

Final nominees for the Third Annual Native American Music Awards have been announced. This year's awards will take place on November 11, 2000.

The Native American Music Awards helps America remember its heritage, honor its unique culture, and celebrate its achievements. The Awards have been consistently sold-out and highly acclaimed for its professionalism, beauty, inspiration, and method of providing overdue recognition. This year's special award recipients include; Rita Coolidge for Lifetime Achievement and the Navajo Code Talkers as Living Legend award recipients.



Save the Children

Breaking the cycle: stopping substance abuse before it starts

It is impossible to walk into Jeddito Elementary School without being struck by its beauty—multi-colored walls and ceilings, skylights, an open courtyard, comfortable classroom spaces. The school welcomes the visitor, and certainly must welcome the child.

As in most schools around the country, Jeddito teachers, staff and administrators want to do what is best for their students. Sometimes that means being more than just a teacher; they must be mentors and friends, dealing with tough problems their students can encounter once they leave school grounds, problems like parental substance-abuse.


Culture and Comics Need Multicultural Perspective

Tall Oak, a Narragansett quoted in the documentary "500 Nations," calls Indians the conscience of America. "The lesson," he says, "is to realize the value of an alternative perspective. And that is why we are here. That is why the Creator allowed some of us to remain, in spite of all the attempts to destroy us."

With violence headlining the news around the globe, a multicultural perspective has never been more relevant than now. No longer does "rugged individualism" or "might makes right" seem the answer to every dilemma. Even jaded Americans, sure of their own superiority, are beginning to ask what's happening



Film About Little People Brings Mohegan Culture into High-tech Age

Mohegan — There wasn't a peep in the room when some of the Mohegan Tribe's youngest members watched a film version of the Indians' revered story of the Little People.

For generations, the Mohegans have been passing on stories of magical little folks who dwell underground in the woods and are the source of good spirits.


How Mosquitoes Were Made

"How Mosquitoes Were Made" is one of the many examples of Inuit traditional knowledge. It is part of knowledge being drawn on for "Inuuqatigiit" the principals on which the new K-12 curriculum being developed for our Nunavut schools.

Long before the earth was covered with water, there lived a fierce giant that everyone was afraid of. The Inuit hoped that someone would come to help them fight the giant.



Few Among Many

As she moved from the Navajo Reservation to join 35,000 UA students starting fall classes this week, JoLene Tsosie was filled with inspiration from her grandparents.

"They always pushed me to go on in my education so I could teach the little children," said the 18-year-old civil engineering major. The freshman moved this week to the University of Arizona from Kayenta in Northern Arizona.


Native American Excels in Road and Mountain Cycling

The 17-year-old William Quillman earned 16th place in La Tour de l'Abitibi in Quebec four weeks ago along with his five other team members.

As one of only five teams in the United States to participate in this international race, Quillman's team was proud to even be a part of "the biggest junior race in North America."



Pyramid Tribe Unveils New School

With a sense of pride, members of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe bowed their heads and listened to a drum song and a Paiute prayer at the opening of the tribe’s new combination middle and high school.

The $10.4 million Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe Junior and Senior High School in Nixon began on Tuesday.

The school’s opening was celebrated with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and remarks from tribal and state leaders, including U.S. Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., and state Sen. Bernice Mathews, D-Reno.


Comanche Language Kept Alive

Geneva Navarro of Santa Fe never taught her children more than a few words of the Comanche language. Now the 74-year-old retired nurse is making up for that by teaching the smooth monotone of Comanche to her grandchildren and more than 35 other students in Santa Fe and Albuquerque.

The younger the student, the better, according to Navarro, who counts herself as the only fully fluent Comanche in Santa Fe and Albuquerque.

"My grandchildren can learn better now than my children," she said. "Hopefully it's not too late."


About This Issue's Greeting - "Aquay"


The Mohegan Tribe's language is an Algonquian dialect, which is currently undergoing restoration and revival

This Date In History


Recipe: Camp Stews


Story: The Alligator and the Hunter


What is this: White-Tailed Deer


Project: Macrame Bracelets


This Issue's Web sites


"OPPORTUNITIES" is from sources distributed nationally and includes scholarships, grants, internships, fellowships, and career opportunities as well as announcements for conferences, workshops and symposia.

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