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

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JUly 2013 - Volume 11 Number 7
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"Tau ah Taiguey"
The Arawak Greeting
"Hello and Good Day!"

1200 pen pals from Six Nations and surrounding communities in Ontario, Canada gather to meet each other for the first time and form a gigantic white pine tree -- the legendary "Tree of Peace" of the Iroquois Confederacy -- with roots wrapping around the Earth. During the gathering the children planted the Pen Pal Friendship Forest at the Tim Horton Onondaga Farm celebrating the important role forests play in our lives. June, 2011

Red Berries Moon
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"All I try to do is portray Indians as we are, in creative ways. With imagination and poetry. I think a lot of Native American literature is stuck in one idea: sort of spiritual, environmentalist Indians. And I want to portray everyday lives. I think by doing that, by portraying the ordinary lives of Indians, perhaps people learn something new."
~Sherman Alexie~
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We Salute
Tuba City Students Graduate High School
With Top Honors

The competition is tough to get into college. The final year of high school is long with testing and more testing, endless applications, financial aid assessments and then waiting and hoping for a letter of acceptance from the college or university of a student's choice. Some students hope a full ride scholarship will accompany that final acceptance letter.

Ten of this year's brightest and most promising seniors, among many others at Tuba City High School (TCHS), will head to college this fall, scholarships in tow.
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Our Featured Artist: Honoring Students
Native Artist Tony Abeyta Talks Inspiration and Aspirations

The modest studio, a second-story flat just off the plaza in Santa Fe, New Mexico, was a riot of color, images and media. Paintings and assemblages on paper perched in helter-­skelter rows against the walls, a multipanel wooden piece rested in the middle of the floor, and easels stood in streaming shafts of morning light.

The artist responsible for all this scarcely stood still. Clad in a knit cap, plaid shirt and worn jeans, he looked like a young 20-something, still flush with the excitement of artistic experimentation and living a creative life.

Lok'a'a' Neez Coolie Awarded Marine Corps Naval Scholarship

Lok'a'a' Neez Coolie (formerly Shelden Phillips), age 18, a senior at Tuba City High School and son of Rose Coolie, earned a Naval Academy Preparatory School Scholarship in Newport, RI for the fall.

Coolie, of the Lok'a'a' Dine clan, has been one of the top 10 students at Tuba City High school since his freshman year. He is a full time member of National Honor Society and National Society of High School Scholars member.

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Our Featured Story: Northwestern Wisconsin First Person History:

Her Hallowed Ground in the Navajo Nation

When a nonprofit group approached Lorraine Nakai in 2011 and offered to build her a house, she was taken by surprise. Although her community activism had improved living conditions for other Navajos on the reservation, it had never occurred to her to seek anything for herself.


Autobiography of Ma-Ka-Tai-Me-She-Kia-Kiak, or Black Hawk

Embracing the Traditions of his Nation, Various Wars in which He has been Engaged, and his Account of the Cause and General History of the Black Hawk War of 1832 His Surrender, and Travels Through the United States.
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Education News Education News
6 SHS Seniors Named Gates Millennium Scholars

This year, six Sequoyah High School seniors have been named as Gates Millennium Scholars resulting in the school to have the second highest number of Native American scholars in the country.

“It is very rewarding to see Sequoyah students succeed in being selected for the Gates Millennium Scholarship,” said Leroy Qualls, SHS superintendent. “Our students are not just great kids, but great role models for Sequoyah. We’re very proud of our scholars.”

Engineering Student Turns Fashion Designer With Statement Ts

Jared Yazzie started out his college career with the intent of becoming an engineer. In fact, he received several scholarships to help him along the way at the University of Arizona.

After two-and-a-half years of working toward his degree, Yazzie, 24, made a drastic change: he switched his major to graphic design.

In the fall of 2009 Yazzie started designing his own T-shirts.

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Giving Back Living Traditions
Heroes on the Water at Wing 'n Fin Resort

Simply Outdoor Experiences sponsored an event at the Wing 'n Fin Resort on Lake Traverse May 16-19 to "give back to our veterans who have made sacrifices for our freedom. It was an enjoyable weekend of free lodging, meals, and all the fishing they could handle."

Simply Outdoor Experiences provides all the essential tools to be successful in the great outdoors, which leads to being successful in life. "Through our mentoring and teaching, we strive to give all families a meaningful outdoor experience that will last a lifetime!' said Joanne Zacharias, Event Coordinator.

Kahnawà:ke Ironworkers "Top Off" the new
One World Trade Center
a.k.a. the Freedom Tower

They built them in the early 70s, they were there to pick up the pieces when terrorists knocked them down, and they were there last Friday to top off the newest tower. Once again, Kahnawà:ke ironworkers put the finishing touch, an antenna piece, on top of the new World Trade Center in New York City. Third generation ironworker, John McGowan, was there to help build the 1,776 foot "Freedom Tower, the tallest building in the western hemisphere. McGowan helped set up cameras on the cranes that sit on top of the building for the media to capture the event.

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Living Traditions Living Traditions
Superheroes in the Salish Design Native Artist
Jeffrey Veregge Embraces His Nerdiness

Jeffrey Veregge, a Port Gamble S'Klallam tribal member, has been creating art for most of his life. A few years ago, after exploring different art techniques, Jeffrey decided to mix two art forms he admires most, Salish form line with comic book super heroes and Sci-Fi.


Chickasaw Leader Opens Thorpe Games for 61 Tribes

Dozens of Chickasaw athletes will be among athletes from across sixty other tribal nations competing this week in Oklahoma City during the second annual Jim Thorpe Native American Games.

Athletes will compete in activities such as basketball, golf, martial arts, wrestling, and softball at several sports venues in the state’s capital and also in Shawnee for the chance to win big.

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Education News Living Traditions
Freeloaders! Crow Creek Boycott Shows State, Town Dependence

The Crow Creek Sioux Tribe's chairman and casino are boycotting suppliers of goods and services in Chamberlain, South Dakota, following the refusal of the local high school to allow a Sioux honor song at the recent graduation ceremonies. See "Crow Creek Sioux Boycott Border-town Businesses Over Banned Honor Song," for more on how the embargo got underway. The boycott has thrown a spotlight on the economic relationship of South Dakota tribes, their border towns and the state as a whole.

LCO Tribe Finds 'Brand New Way' To Protest: With A Harvest Camp

The Lac Courte Oreilles tribe is trying a unique way to help stop the proposed iron ore mine in the Penokees: gathering wild onions and mushrooms.

The new LCO Harvest Camp is set in the backwoods of Iron County, right in the middle of the proposed mine.

Connor Beaulieu of LCO says he's almost 13 years old and proud to show off this new camp.

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Living Traditions Living Traditions

Head to Fairbanks, Alaska, for the Annual World Eskimo Indian Olympics

This summer athletes, vendors, and spectators will gather from around the world in Fairbanks to celebrate the 52nd Annual World Eskimo Indian Olympics.
15 Bicyclists Begin Retracing Trail of Tears

Family members, friends as well as Cherokee Nation employees and leaders gathered May 30 at the Tribal Complex to send off the 15 local bicyclists participating in the 2013 Remember the Removal Bike Ride from New Echota, GA., to Tahlequah, OK.
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Healthy Living Living Traditions
Food Experts: Summit Aimed at Preventing Extinction of Tribe

The goal of the 2013 Navajo Food and Wellness Policy Summit is to develop a comprehensive food policy that will ensure the Navajo people survive 5,000 years and beyond into the future.

That's the major reason why Larry Curley, executive director for the Navajo Nation Division of Health, and tribal health officials sponsored the summit – to make certain the Navajo people never become an extinct tribe due to health disparities in their diet.

Putting a Sheen on Native Theater


Johnny Depp may have been elusive last year while filming "The Lone Ranger" on the rez, but another big Hollywood name got into the act this past week with Native kids honing their dramatic skills.

Martin Sheen was on hand at the Native Vision drama workshop in Shiprock, and took the stage with the participants in their series of skits titled "The Navajo News," performed Monday night at The Phil Thomas Performing Arts Center.

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Education News   Living Traditions
Cheyenne River Youth Project Teams to Host Canning Classes

In recent weeks, the Cheyenne River Youth Project in Eagle Butte, South Dakota, has announced several exciting developments in its sustainable agriculture department.

Thanks to a grant from the Northwest Area Foundation and a major grassroots fundraising effort, the youth project is now advertising for a sustainable agriculture coordinator, has hired a summertime garden coordinator, is launching garden centric youth programming for children and teens, and has purchased much needed supplies for the two acre, naturally grown, pesticide free Winyan Toka Win garden.

But there's more.

Akwesasne Museum Exhibit Opening

Teiotiokwaonháston/ Deyodyogwaoháhs:doh (Encircles Everything) is a large cornhusk doll diorama of the 50 chiefs and clanmothers made by Elizabeth “Betts” Doxtator, Mohawk from Ohsweken. It will be on display at the Akwesasne Museum for the summer, and the artist will be at the museum on Thursday June 20th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm for an opening reception with light refreshments.

The museum has rented out its two traveling exhibits to Parks Canada from May until September, so there is plenty of room to house the cornhusk doll diorama for the next few months. Betts is talented in many media, including beadwork, painting, and cornhusk doll making. Each clanmother has a feast basket – some of the feast baskets in the diorama were made by Lenora David, Micmac of Akwesasne.

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About This Issue's Greeting - "Tau ah Taiguey"

Before the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492, most of the Caribbean was peopled by three types, or groups, of inhabitants: the Ciboney or Guanahuatebey, the Taino or Arawak, and the Caribs. The cultural distinctions among the three groups are not great; the single greatest differentiating factor appears to be their respective dates of arrival in the region. The Ciboney seem to have arrived first and were found in parts of Cuba and the Bahamas. They also seem to have had the most elementary forms of social organization. The most numerous groups were the Arawaks, who resided in most of the Greater Antilles--Cuba, Jamaica, Hispaniola (presently, Haiti and the Dominican Republic), and Puerto Rico. The smaller eastern island chain was the home of the Caribs, a tropical forest group related to most of the indigenous Indians found in Central and South America. Barbados and a number of smaller islands were not permanently inhabited.

The pre-European populations of the territories that later formed the Commonwealth Caribbean belonged to the groups designated as Caribs and Arawaks. Both were tropical forest people, who probably originated in the vast expanse of forests of the northern regions of South America and were related linguistically and ethnically to such present-day tropical forest peoples as the Chibcha, the Warao, the Yanomamo, the Caracas, the CaquetÌo, or the Jirajara--in short, the peoples found anywhere from Panama to Brazil.
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A Story To Share:
The Peace Tree
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This Issue's
Web sites
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Nature's Beauty:
Visit Nunavut's Mount Thor, World's Steepest, Tallest Cliff
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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 - 2013 of Vicki Williams Barry and Paul Barry.

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