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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


July 14, 2001 - Issue 40


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"pronounced as (Hey) translated as (Hi or hello) as a greeting."


Newly fledged Peregrine Falcon - courtesy Xcel Energy




Fledgling Raptor Moon




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"Think not forever of yourselves, O chiefs, nor of your own generation. Think of continuing generations of our families, think of our grandchildren and of those yet unborn, whose faces are coming from beneath the ground."

Peacemaker, Founder of the Iroquois Confederacy circa 1000 AD


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We Salute
Michael LaFromboise

BILLINGS, MT - Michael LaFromboise wants to help other young people walk the rickety bridge between traditional American Indian culture and western values.

While earning a degree from MSU-Billings, LaFromboise was hired as executive director of the Billings-based Montana United Indian Association.

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School News Banner

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:

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News Flash

We've added maps to our articles, so that you can see where the many paths of our People are. Additionally, we've provided these two maps of North America and a coloring book picture for you to print. We hope that this new feature is helpful.

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Tony Jojola

Tony Jojola (Isleta Pueblo) is one of only a handful Native American glass blowers. Born on the Isleta Pueblo in New Mexico, Jojola began working as a potter at a young age. After enrolling at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, he was exposed to the art of glass blowing. Further training at the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts in Deer Isle, Maine, led to a period of study at the Pilchuck Glass School in Seattle, Washington, where he served as a studio assistant to Dale Chihuly, the acknowledged master of American glass art.

"I rely on my Native American culture to create our old traditional and ceremonial forms such as seed jars, baskets and ollas in glass. Pueblo people have always created in clay."


New Wealth of History Helps Tribes Fill Gaps
 by GREG BOLT The Register-Guard-July 5, 2001

EUGENE, OR - Archivists at the Smithsonian Institution didn't give Jason Younker much hope when he and some fellow students went there six years ago in hopes of resurrecting the lost history of their Coquille ancestors.

It's too small a tribe, the University of Oregon graduate students were told; you're not going to find much. JoAllyn Archambault, the director of the American Indian Program at the Smithsonian, was so confident that she offered to pay the copying fees for anything the team found.

It turned out to be an expensive offer.

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Tribal School Teaches Language, Traditions
  by Eric Burkett Anchorage Daily News

SUTTON, AK - About 100 people participated in a powwow on the grounds of the Chickaloon Native Village headquarters Saturday, a benefit for the village's tribal school. Yah Ne Dah Ah School was founded more than a decade ago by elder and clan grandmother Kathleen Wade as a means to pass on Chickaloon's language and traditions to the tribe's children.

Wade was pleased with the turnout in support of the school.


Teams Will Aid Natives in Schools
 by Rosemary Shinohara Anchorage Daily News

A nonprofit Native group plans to spend up to $2 million annually in Anchorage public schools to help the many Native students who either give up and drop out or stay in school and earn low grades.

Beginning this fall, Cook Inlet Tribal Council Inc. proposes to send teams of three people, including a counselor, a tutor and a home coordinator, into middle schools and high schools to work one on one with Native students and their families.

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Nez Perce Museum Boasts Huge Collection of Ancient Canoes
 by Rebecca Boone Lewiston Morning Tribune

SPALDING, ID - At the Nez Perce National Historical Park, two men crouch around a weathered, wooden canoe.

Both work intently, focusing on cracks and structural weaknesses in the weathered wood.

Decades ago, long legs were tucked inside the bed of this canoe, along with baskets of fish or dried meat and furs.


Anishinaabe Horse Program Teaches Values, Tribal Historical Ties to Animals
 by: BEN LATHROP, Staff Writer Detroit Lakes Tribune

Sheldon Shebala sits erect on the paint horse, cowboy boots in the stirrups, black waist-length braids dangling from beneath a white cowboy hat.

"This here is Ronald," he tells the two dozen kids standing outside the corral, eager (or nervous) for their turn to ride. "I just met him yesterday. He seems to be a really nice horse."

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Family Event Highlights Miccosukee Culture
  by Nicole T. Lesson Staff Writer Sun Sentinel

Covering himself with sand for a better grip, a 10-year-old boy climbed a greased pole and was the first to reach a $100 bill taped to the top Sunday during the ninth annual Miccosukee Freedom Festival.

"I put sand everywhere and climbed up fast," said Luis Rodriguez of Leisure City, who won last year.


Lumbees Celebrate Heritage
 by Venita Jenkins Staff Writer Fayetteville Online

PEMBROKE, NC -- It took James Hite nearly 50 years to attend his first Lumbee Homecoming.

He left the event Saturday afternoon planning to return next year.

Hite and thousands of other Lumbee Indians gathered in Pembroke for the tribe’s annual homecoming. Organizers estimated more than 30,000 people attended this year’s event.

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Students Find Strong Connections in Tai Chi
 by Mary Pierpoint Indian Country Today Staff

LAWRENCE, KS - Upward Bound students at Haskell Indian Nations University are finding the ancient art of tai chi isn't all that far from the values of their own Native American roots.

Bill Douglas, a 20-year veteran of the art of stress relief, is teaching students this summer to control their stress and even their anger.


Tribes Try to Restore Native Languages
 by Rhina Guidos Reno Gazette-Journal

Hilman Tobey dreams that his grandchildren one day will speak the language native to the Nevada region where they are from.

And he’s not talking about English.

“Back in those days,” said the 86-year-old from Pyramid Lake, “the kids got together and they spoke Paiute. That’s all they spoke. The only time we spoke English was in school.”

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'Windtalkers' Star is the Real Thing
 by Brenda Norrell of Indian Country Today Staff

TSAILE, AZ - "Oh just to hear that cadence again," the sound of the military and marching, that's all Roger Willie really wanted after serving four years in the U.S. Army.

Willie's dream became a reality when he was cast as a Navajo Codetalker in the upcoming movie, "Windtalkers," produced by award-winning director John Woo.

So, how did a Navajo Army veteran with two bachelor's degrees and a family become an actor in a feature film?


Ignacio's Yellow Jacket Drum Group Adjusts to Changing Times
  by Matt Joyce Durango Herald Staff Writer

IGNACIO, CO – When the members of Yellow Jacket circle around their drum to sing, the music that emerges is timeless.

"It’s something that’s been going on in Native American culture forever," said Tyson Thompson, a member of the singing group for four years. "We’re just trying to keep it alive."

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Sister Act: Corn, Beans and Squash
 by Adrienne Cook Special to The Washington Post

In an age of shrinking yards and gardens, it is useful to remember that Native American tribes knew how to use land efficiently for food production. One ancient tradition was planting what was known as the “three sisters” - corn, beans and squash.

These were sown together on the same bit of land, whether a small garden or a whole field. They complement each other well.


The Legend of the Cherokee Rose

The Cherokee were driven from their homelands in North Carolina and Georgia over 100 years ago when gold was discovered in their lands. The journey known as the "Trail of Tears". It was a terrible time for the people - many died from the hardships and the women wept. The old men knew the women must be strong to help the children survive so they called upon the Great One to help their people and to give the mothers strength.

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Two Cultures Shaped Leadership Style
 by James May Indian Country Today Staff

BELLINGHAM, WA - Though the idea of many American Indians living in two worlds has often been derided by American Indian authors and social critics, it is becoming more and more of an everyday occurrence.

Take Amy Finkbonner for example. As last year's Associated Student Body president at Western Washington University, Amy learned her heritage provided unique insight she found particularly valuable to her elected job.


O'odham Celebrate First Graduation
  by Brenda Norrell Indian Country Today Staff

SELLS, AZ - Standing proudly in her graduation cap and gown, Rebecca Antone said she will continue her education and hopes to inspire other young teenage mothers to pursue their education and dreams.

"Just don't give up. I know how hard it can be," said Antone, who became a mother at 14.

Antone was among the first 28 graduates of Tohono O'odham Community College.

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Meeting of Minds in S.D.
 by Jennifer Weil
New York Daily News

Cesar Pozo tucked a basketball under his arm when he took off for South Dakota's Pine Ridge Reservation last week with 18 other city teenagers.

The teen basketball players — many who have never been out of the city or on an airplane — all have visions of what awaits them.


Crew Tries to Capture Whaling Culture on Film
 by Tim Macdonald Arctic Sounder

BARROW, AK - The day was warm and clear. A group of four Inupiat whalers paddled a skin boat along the remaining shore ice followed by an aluminum boat full of filmmakers with a motion picture camera grinding.

"This light is amazing," director Bestor Cram said. "This is great stuff. Did you get that?"

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American Indian Workshops Make Art from Everyday Items
 by Karen Pierce Gonzalez, San Francisco Chronicle

Hal Brightcloud of San Rafael carefully painted his face half red, half black to show how his native Muscogee (Creek) tribe in Oklahoma used to adorn themselves.

Speaking to the handful of people who have come to his Sunday afternoon face-painting workshop in Novato, he explained that red represents blood, or life, and that face-painting has long been an important form of art among American Indians.


Actor, Musician Speak to Cherokee Campers

TAHLEQUAH, OK - More than 30 kids at Cherokee Nation’s fitness camps got a special treat this week with a visit by actor Steve Reevis and musician Tommy Wildcat.

Reevis, who has appeared in several movies, including Dances with Wolves, Fargo and Geronimo, gave an inspirational speech instructing the campers about the importance of education and perseverance.

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Watonka: A Book Review

In a dream, the Great Spirit reveals to the descendant of a Sioux warrior how children will help bring peace to the tormented spirits of Arapaho ghost dancers. Two mysterious young visitors join forces with two boys in a small Oklahoma town, and are led to Little Fox, the great-niece of a revered Cheyenne medicine man.


A Family Story
  by Richard L. Slater

This family story is for my children and grandchildren, whom I love very much. I sincerely wanted them to have a record of their old people so that they would know where they came from and who their old people were. Children, I ask that you remember and respect these facts of our lives.

Prior to writing this story of our family, I kept asking myself, "Where do I start? ".

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In Every Issue Banner

About This Issue's Greeting - "He'


Lenape is of the Algonquian language
class, the words are of the Unami dialect.


This Date In History


Recipe: Three Sisters

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Story: Learning From the Bear


What is this: American Black Bear

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Project: Hairpipes - Part 2


This Issue's Web sites

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"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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  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, 2001 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.


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