Local Briefs
Whats New July
Friday, August 05 2016
Written by The Circle,
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10-year-old runs marathons for suicide prevention

tristangofundme.jpg10-year-old Tristan Smith ran in the May 19, Fargo 5K and the half-marathon on May 20, in Fargo, North Dakota. He plans to run all summer and has set up a GoFundMe page to raise $1,000.

On his GoFundMe page, Tristan said, “I am currently the White Earth Jr Brave and trying to represent the White Earth Nation as best as I can. I am asking for your help to raise money for suicide prevention. I have seen what drugs and alcohol have done to families and it makes me sad. I want to raise money to help kids get into sports because I think if they are active in sports like I am, they will stay away from drugs and not want to kill themselves.” The money raised will help White Earth Nation kids afford to play football.

Tristan is a 4th grader at Roosevelt School in Detroit Lakes, but used to live on the White Earth Reservation.
People can donate to “Run For Life” at any Midwest Bank, or donate on his GoFundMe page at:

Robert Lilligren new President and CEO of NACDI

robertlilligren.jpgThe Board of Directors of the Native American Community Development Institute (NACDI) announced the appointment of Robert Lilligren as their new President and CEO. Lilligren, a former Minneapolis City Council Member and enrolled member of the White Earth Band of Ojibwe, just finished an 18 month commitment as interim CEO of Little Earth of United Tribes in Minneapolis. Earlier this year Lilligren stepped down as the chair of the board of NACDI.  Lilligren took the reigns of NACDI on May 9, 2016.

“We are thrilled to have Robert take on the leadership of NACDI,” says the board’s Vice Chair Reverend Marlene Helgemo (Ho-Chunk), “As the founding board chair Robert has lived NACDI’s asset-based approach toward community development in his personal, professional, political and activist life. We expect great things from him in this new role as NACDI’s CEO.”

Founded in 2007, NACDI is committed to transforming the American Indian community to effectively respond to 21st century opportunities. NACDI works to promote innovative community development strategies that strengthen the overall sustainability and well-being of American Indian people and communities.

FDLTCC publishes Thunderbird Review Anthology

The Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College has published the fourth edition of its literary anthology, The Thunderbird Review. The 97-page book features writing and art submitted by students from Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College and residents of northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin communities.
The journal received over 100 submissions this year to consider for inclusion, and is an opportunity for students to gain hands-on experience in writing, editing, and publishing at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College.
“Working on the journal is a great experience for students,” said English instructor Darci Schummer. “It is also so important for students to have a place to submit their work. The feeling of seeing your work in print for the first time, which it is for many of these students, is indescribable.”

For more information or to purchase a copy of The Thunderbird Review, contact Darci Schummer at 218-879-0845. People interested in purchasing copies of the anthology can find them at the Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College Bookstore for $5 each. Funds from book sales go toward producing the current publication as well as the next edition.

Dream of Wild Health Receives National Kresge Foundation Grant

Out of more than 500 applications, Dream of Wild Health is one of 26 organizations selected for a national grant from the Kresge Foundation. The Kresge Foundation announced funding to develop food-oriented initiatives in cities across the nation through it’s “Fresh, Local & Equitable: Food as a Creative Platform for Neighborhood Revitalization” initiative, also known as FreshLo.

Dream of Wild Health (DWH) submitted a plan to establish, plan, and create an Indigenous Food Network in the Philips neighborhood of Minneapolis. As part of the FreshLo community, DWH will create and enhance pathways to opportunity for Native American people in low-income, urban neighborhoods.
DWH will receive $75,000 planning awards through FreshLo to design neighborhood-scale projects demonstrating creative, cross- sector visions of food-oriented development.

The Indigenous Food Network, Gimino-Wiisenimin (We Eat Well Together) is a cooperative Native American cultural food system that will address the community’s food needs by: expanding production of organic and traditional foods, improving healthy food access through innovative community distribution systems, developing job training and employment opportunities, and providing hands-on gardening and cooking programs for Native youth and families.

DWH is partnering initially with the Minneapolis American Indian Center, Nawayee Center School, Little Earth of United Tribes, and Division of Indian Work.

Native American Students with SMSC Scholarships Celebrate Graduation from UofMN

studenatgradstory.jpgThe Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community (SMSC) joined the University of Minnesota on April 30 to celebrate the graduation of this year’s Native American students who received scholarships from the SMSC.
 The scholarship program is part of the SMSC’s focus on bolstering other tribal nations and supporting talented Native American students with financial needs.

This year’s graduates are: Chad Auginash, Red Lake Nation; Hannah Brengman, Adopted Native American; Veronica Briggs, White Earth Mississippi Band of Ojibwe; Chilah Brown, Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe; Robert Budreau, Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa; Hana Bushyhead, Eastern Band of Cherokee; Travis Crego, St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin; Rachel Forrest, Koasek Traditional Band of the Koas; Vanessa Goodthunder, Lower Sioux Indian Community; Phillip Gullikson, Three Affiliated Tribes; Diana Hawkins, Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate; Chelsea Holmes, Rosebud Sioux Tribe; Alayna Johnson, Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa; John Kelsey, Huron Band of the Potawatomi; Olivia Mora, Manchester Band of Pomo Indians; Brandon One Feather, Oglala Sioux Tribe;  Jasmine Paron, Red Lake Nation; Cage Pierre, Avoyel-Taensa Tribe of Louisiana; Jesslynn Poitra, Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians; Kate Shelerud, Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe; Zachary Wilkie, Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians; Jaimin Williams, Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa; Tia Yazzie, Navajo Nation; Darian Ziegler, Lower Brule Sioux; and Mathew Zumoff, Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe.

About 200 Native American students have received the SMSC Endowed Scholarship in the past eight years. The program was established in 2009 with a $2.5 million gift from the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community. The University of Minnesota matches the scholarship payouts from the endowment fund.

Name Change for Midwest Area Tribal Health Board and Bemidji Area Indian Health Service 
The Great Lakes Area Tribal Health Board (GLATHB) is working to change the Area Indian Health Service Office name from “Bemidji Area” to “Great Lakes  Area”. The GLATHB represents 34 tribes across Minnesota, Wisconsin and  Michigan. In an effort to promote uniformity, the board voted in April to change its own name from Midwest Area Tribal Health Board to Great Lakes Area Tribal Health Board.

One of 12 Indian Health Service (IHS) regions in the country, the “Bemidji Area” serves 34 tribes and nations in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan; plus four Urban Indian Health Centers in Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Detroit and Chicago.

The press release sent out by the GLATHB said, “This name will  promote unity, comprehensive representation and inclusion of the Great Lakes  area. Additionally, it will eliminate confusion regarding the composition of the  service area.”

American Indians Respond to Washington Post R-word Poll
Friday, August 05 2016
Written by Jon Lurie,
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redskins.jpgNative Americans are responding with incredulity to a Washington Post poll published last month which suggests a majority of Indigenous people are not bothered by the team name and mascot of Washington’s NFL football team.

The poll surveyed 504 Native Americans, 44 percent of whom said they were an enrolled member of a Native American tribe. The results claim that 90 percent of Native Americans are not bothered by the term “Redskins.” A further 340 Native Americans were also surveyed on whether they thought the term was disrespectful: 73 percent said they did not.

The Washington Post asserted that the survey was conducted in order to gather the opinions of “actual stakeholders.” From coast to coast, however, Native people and the organizations that represent them expressed their displeasure over the poll, the methods used to conduct it, and its results.

Many took to social media in May to express their unhappiness over the poll’s miniscule sample size using the hashtag #IAmNativeIWasNotAsked.

Twitter user Jacqueline Keeler (@jfkeeler) wrote: “A poll is not going to stop 5 decades of protest – nothing will until Native people are shown as more than mascots.”

Robyn Lawson (@robynwins111) tweeted: “I am Cree, Metis, Mohawk & I despise that name as much now as I did when I was called one as a child.”

Kenzie Allen (@cerena) wrote: All I can see here is [more] colonial take, take, take. But our cultures do belong to us, no matter what.”

Jacqueline Pata, Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians, said in an interview published by Fusion News: “The survey doesn’t recognize the psychological impacts these racist names and imagery have on American Indian and Alaska Natives. It is not respectful to who we are as Native people. This poll still doesn’t make it right.”

Change the Mascot, a grassroots campaign based in the Oneida Nation which has long advocated for discontinuing the use of derogatory team names released a statement the day after the poll’s release.  “The results of this poll confirm a reality that is encouraging but hardly surprising: Native Americans are resilient and have not allowed the NFL’s decades-long denigration of us to define our own self-image. However, that proud resilience does not give the NFL a license to continue marketing, promoting, and profiting off of a dictionary-defined racial slur – one that tells people outside of our community to view us as mascots.

Native Health in Indian Country
Friday, August 05 2016
Written by Lee Egerstrom,
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nativehealthart.jpgBack in 1986, tribal leaders at the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa in Minnesota recognized difficulties their members were having in accessing medicines. They started a pharmacy to provide free and low-cost medicines for their members in Cloquet.

It didn’t take long for the Band to recognize its model for operating a pharmacy was working, but Native Americans in Minnesota shared the same problems in both rural and urban settings.

Nine years ago, in 2007, Fond du Lac Human Services Division opened Mashkiki Waakaaigan Pharmacy in the American Indian Cultural Corridor on Franklin Avenue in Minneapolis. It serves the Native American population of Hennepin (Minneapolis) and Ramsey (St. Paul) counties.

Tiffany Elton, FDL Human Services’ pharmacy coordinator, said the Minneapolis branch now has about 7,000 regular clients, or customers. FDL’s pharmacy services at both Cloquet and in Duluth serving Carlton and St. Louis counties have more than 6,000 Native American clients combined.

“There was clearly a need,” Elton said. “Our tribal leaders took some risks, but it worked out.”      

Those actions by Fond du Lac fills prescription needs for people already in the health care pipeline. In another ground-up action, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community at Prior Lake launched a Mobile Unit in 2007 that brings free medical, dental and vision care screening and services to American Indian populations throughout the state.

One recent day when the huge medical unit was parked near Mashkiki Waakaaigan Pharmacy in Minneapolis, the traveling SMSC medical staff was providing free mammogram examinations.

Dan Hockinson, the mobile coordinator, said on past visits around the state the teams have called for ambulance service and performed resuscitation techniques on patients who were in dire need of medical care.   
The mobile unit is part of SMSC’s wellness services providing comprehensive health care for community members, SMSC employees and families, and for all other Native Americans living in Scott County on the southwest side of the Twin Cities.

The mobile unit does different types of screening and provides different medical services on its traveling schedule around Minnesota, Hockinson said. In some cases, patients are sent to area or tribal hospital and clinics. In less remote areas, patients are encouraged to see their own or find doctors to treat their needs.

May Events
Thursday, May 05 2016
Written by The Circle,
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Thru May
Synthesis: Paintings by Aza Erdrich
In her premiere solo exhibition of paintings, Erdrich shares works that pull from her life as a young woman of mixed Native and non-Native ancestry growing up in Minneapolis. She draws influence from Anishinaabe artistic traditions and personal experience to create uniquely coded works of self and familial narrative. Guest curated by Dyani White Hawk. All My Relations Gallery, 1414 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis. Hours: Tues-Fri: 10 am - 5 pm; Sat and Sun: 11 am - 5 pm. For info, call 612-235-4970, email   This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or see

Thru July 2016
Why Treaties Matter traveling exhibit
This exhibit explores relationships between Dakota and Ojibwe Indian Nations and the U.S. government in Minnesota. Learn how treaties affected the lands and lifeways of the indigenous peoples of this place, and why these binding agreements still matter today. For info, see:
• Thru May 15: Metro State University, St. Paul.
• June 27 - July 17: Minnesota State Community and Technical College, Detroit Lakes.
Thru May 20
Two spirit Exhibition
The art show “The Many Faces of Two-Spirit People” will show at Two Rivers Gallery. Reception will be May 14 from 5-8 pm. There will also be a reading by Two-Spirit writers during the reception. Gallery Hours: Mon., Tue.: 10 am - 4 pm; Wed. 11 am - 3 pm. MAIC, 1530 Franklin Ave, Minneapolis. For info, email: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

May 1
Dakota Language Mini-Camp

Hiyú po! Dakhóta iá wouŋhdakapi kte! Come and speak the Dakota language in a family learning enviroment. This Dakota language mini-camp encourages families to use the Dakota language in the home on a daily basis. The language that will be covered is everyday conversational topics that can be used at home with your family. All ages welcome, lunch provided. Adult and youth class. 11 am - 3 pm. Neighborhood Early Learning Center, 2438 18th Avenue South, Minneapolis.

May 2
Indian Month Kick-off Event

10 am: Opening Ceremony at Cedar Field at Little Earth (25th and Cedar Ave. S.) 10:30 am: Parade of Nations will go from Cedar Field to the Minneapolis American Indian Center. 11:30 am: Community speakers at MAIC. Noon: Community Feast. Free. For info, see: 2016AmIndMonthMpls.

May 2
Metis Choreographer

Join us in welcoming Metis choreographer Rulan Tangen to Mni Sota Makoce. Rulan Tangen, Founding Artistic Director of Dancing Earth based in New Mexico, is in residence in the Twin Cities as a part of Oyate Okadakiciyapi: A festival of Native dance and music events by The Ordway Theater and Rosy Simas Danse. All are welcome. 9 -10 am: Lite breakfast and social time. 9:30 am: Welcoming by Janice Bad Moccasin. All Nations Indian Church, 1515 E. 23rd St., Minneapolis MN. For info, contact Jenea Rewertz-Targui at 651-282-3017 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

May 2
Alaskan Native Drum, Dance and Story Telling

Alaskan Native Drum, Dance and Story Telling event at North Hennepin Community College. Join Yupik and Cupik artists and performers Ossie Kairaiuak and Polly Andrews in the Black Box Theater (upstairs in the Campus Center) at North Hennepin Community College, 7411 85th Av. N., Brooklyn Park. Free.

May 2-4
Fertile Ground II

“Fertile Ground II: Growing the Seeds for Native American Health” will address several crucial dietary and cultural issues that have made Native American communities susceptible to health problems. Held at the JW Marriott hotel, Mall of America. Topics include: nutrition, access to healthier food, and Native America food production. Also on the agenda are youth leadership and intergeneration holistic health in order to encourage cultural changes that can lead to improvement in eating and health habits. Tribes, health experts and funders are encouraged to participate. For info, email:  This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it Registration is $350. Registration fee includes: conference, evening networking reception, breakfast on May 3rd and 4, Lunch on May 3rd and 4th, Dinner on May 2 and 3. There will be no on-site registration, register at:

May 2-6
40- Hour Sexual Assault Advocacy Training

Minnesota Indian Women’s Sexual Assault Coalition’s Fundamentals of Sexual Assault Advocacy Sexual Violence in Indian Country. Topics include: Sex Offenders - What Advocates Need to Know; Core Skills of Advocacy; Social Change Advocacy; SARTS-Sexual Assault Response Teams; Advocacy Self Care and Burnout; Medical Response; Law Enforcement Response; and more. Meals will be on your own. Free, includes materials and Certificate of Completion upon completion. Who should attend: Advocates and Service Providers. Community is welcome. Limited to 30 Persons. Trainers: Cristine Davidson and Amanda Watson. Training is at Minnesota Chippewa Tribe Building,15542th State 371 NW, Cass Lake, MN. Register: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or 651-621-1723.

May 3, 10, 17, 24, 31
On the Red Road AA Meeting

Please join us celebrate recovery: 12 step, Big Book, Ala-non. Meets every Tuesday from 7 - 9 pm. There is a potluck the 1st Tuesday of the month. Minneapolis American Indian Center (Auditorium), 1530 E. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis.

May 5-6
Wiiazhegii Wem: There is a returning

The White Earth Band of Ojibwe recognizes the importance of acknowledging all its relatives and wishes to provide a time of healing. It is time to welcome our adoptees back home, to come together and provide healing and reconnecting. White Earth will be offering a community forum and healing including, spiritual teachings, education, and the opportunity to learn more about our history. Thursday: 8 am - 5 pm. Friday: 8 am - 5 pm. Shooting Star Casino, Mahnomen, MN. For more info, contact Sandy White Hawk at 651-442-4872 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

May 6
Veterans Plant Fundraiser Sale

Honoring Native American Veterans Plant Fundraiser Sale. 9 am - 2 pm. To donate plants for the sale please drop them off at the MCT Building, 1308 E. Franklin Ave, Minneapolis on May 5. Fundraiser will be held at the  Minneapolis American Indian Center, 1530 E. Franklin Ave, Minneapolis. For info, call 952-703-3104.

May 6
Kids Day at NACC Dental

Kids can come and decorate a mother’s day gifts for their moms. No appointments needed, just walk in. Anyone who makes an appointment in dental will get a free electric toothbrush. 9:30 am - 4:30 pm. NACC, 1213 E. Franklin Ave. Minneapolis. For more info, call  612-872-8086.

May 6
Thesis: an Artist-Curator Talk

Artists talk with Aza Erdrich, Dyani White Hawk, and other guests. Refreshments from Powwow Grounds. 7 pm. In conjunction with Synthesis:  Paintings by Aza Erdrich, on view until May 27. All My Relations Gallery, 1414 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis. For info, call 612-235-4970 or see

May 6
2016 Indian Law Conference

The 2016 Indian Law Conference will be held at the Mystic Lake Casino Hotel. Speakers: Senator Al Franken (invited), Anita Fineday, Professor Janie Simms Hipp, C. Bryant Rogers, Phillip B. Wilson. Professor Sarah Deer will be honored at the reception on Friday afternoon. Co-sponsored by the  Minnesota CLE. Mystic Alek Casino, 2400 Mystic Lake Blvd NW, Prior Lake, MN. For more information see:

May 7
2nd Annual Dakóta Oyate Language Bowl

The language bowl is working to increase the number of Dakota language speakers. Age Groups: Grades 6-12, Adult Novice and Adult Advanced (at your own discretion). Cost to Participate: $100/team. Cost to Attend: Free. Harding High School, 1540 6th St., East Saint Paul, MN. 8 am - 6 pm. Register at: For info, contact Brittany Anderson at 612-626-5759 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

May 13
Am. Indian Family Center Open House

Please join us for food, door prizes, bingo, crafts, and lots of fun! 11 am - 3 pm. American Indian Family Center, 579 Wells St, Saint Paul. For info, call 651-793-3803 or email:  This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

May 13
Sobriety Friday

Monthly Celebration Dinner: Special speakers, testimonials of sobriety, great food, Gospel music and door prizes. 6:30 - 9 pm. Sponsored by Overcomers Ministries. The American Indian Center, 1530 E. Franklin Ave. Minneapolis. For info, call 651-690-3891.

May 13
Circle of Life Open House

Circle of Life H.C Anishinaabe & Mashkiki Waakaaigan “Honoring Those We Serve”. Join Us for an Open House. MC: Dave Larsen. Kalpulli Ketzalcoatlicue/Aztec Dancers, Red Bone Drum Group, Famous Dave’s food, bingo, free drawings, face painting, balloon twists. 11 am - 3 pm. Franklin Business Center, 1433 E. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis. For info, call 612-871-2474 or Mashkiki Waakaaigan at 612-871-1989.

May 14
Two Spirit Community Celebration

Community celebration of Two-Spirit and Native LGBT people at MAIC from 9:30 am -- 4:30 pm. Includes four speakers, kid-friendly events, vendors, food, and drum. MAIC, 1530 E. Franklin Ave., Mpls.

May 17
Mazinibakajige: Birch Bark Biting

The art of birch bark biting. Join us for an evening discussion and demonstration with birch bark artist Denise Lajimodiere (Turtle Mountain Ojibwe).  5 - 8 pm. Free and open to the public. All My Relations Gallery, 1414 E. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis. For info, call 612-235-4970, email   This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or see

May 18
Minneapolis American Indian Center Open House

The Minneapolis American Indian Center hosts their Open House with lunch and raffles. Free and open to the community. (Lunch served until gone.) Noon to 2 pm. MAIC, 1530 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis. For info, call 612-871-4555.

May 18
Information Fair on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
Pipe Ceremony, Keynote Speaker, Information Tables, raffles and door prizes. Noon to 4 pm. Feast at 1 pm. Sponsored by the Upper Midwest American Indian Center, 1035 W. Broadway Ave., Minneapolis. For info, call 612 522-4436.

May 19
Coming Home (Bi-azhe-giiwewin) Potluck

Coming Home is a new group offered by the Indian Health Board for men. It provides recidivism prevention and recovery support for Native American men who are (1) Completing treatment, (2) Returning to the community from confinement, (3) Wanting cultural traditions to support their healing journey. Monthly potlucks will be held on the third Thursdays for the month (6:00-7:30) to increase positive community support and relationships. All are welcome. For more info, visit: or call Tom at 612-721-9836, or Richard at 612-721-9814.

May 19
Ice Cream Social & Dessert Bar

MCT Building Ice Cream Social & Dessert Bar. Please join all the programs housed within the MN Chippewa Tribe building to celebrate the May Indian Month with an ice cream social and dessert bar. Door prizes too. MN Chippewa Tribal Offices, 1113 E Franklin Ave Ste 211, Minneapolis. For info, call 612-871-6618, 612-872-8388 or 612-871-1574.

May 19
AIOIC Founder’s Day and Career Fair

American Indian OIC’s Career and Resource Fair. The Resource Fair will have agents from a variety of agencies. Lunch and prizes. Free parking. 12 pm - 3 pm. AIOIC, 1845 E Franklin Ave., Minneapolis. For info, see: or call 612-341-3358.

May 20
NACC Open House

Join us in celebrting American Indian Month. Noon to 3 pm in the Native American Community Clinic parking lot. The theme this year is “Keeping Tobacco Sacred”. In the event of rain, the location will be announced. NACC, 1213 E. Franklin Ave. Minneapolis. For more info, call  612-872-8086.

May 20
Fix-It Clinic

Have a laptop that is running slow? A virus on your PC? We can help. American Indian OIC, the City of Minneapolis, and its’ partners are hosting a free clinic to help repair your broken technology. You will also be able learn more about technology maintenance and security and connect to job training programs that can lead to careers in technology. 1-5 pm at the American Indian OIC, 1845 East Franklin Avenue, Minneapolis. For info, call 612-341-3358.

May 21
Homeland: Native Artist Create on the Ave

Native artists of all backgrounds, including beaders, storytellers, quilt makers, craftspeople, makers, performers, muralists and others, are invited to join the creative peacemaking movement. Artists will work together to share $20,000 to create public art on Franklin Avenue. Artists workshop will be held from 9 am to 5 pm. Breakfast and lunch will be served. All My Relations Arts Gallery, 1414 E. Franklin Ave., Minneapolis. For info, call 612-235-4970.

May 21
Youth Lacrosse Tournament

The Maanico Horuzra Caabnaikiisik Youth Lacrosse Tournament will be held at Harding Senior High. This is a Free event, sponsored by the Ho-Chunk Nation. All American Indian youth are invited: All ages and skills. Organized teams are not required, but welcomed. Individuals are welcome to join in age brackets. Wooden sticks will be provided for individuals who do not have sticks. All participants will receive t-shirts. Free food, prizes, fun, traditional teachings. Saturday: 10:30 am to 5:00 pm. Harding Senior High Schoo, 1540 6th St. E., Saint Paul, MN. To register, see: For info, contact Danielle DeLong at:  This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or 651-744-4018.

May 24
Bii Gii Win Open House

Bii Gii Wiin CDLF will be hosting its Open House/Indian Month Event at the Minneapolis American Indian Center from 12 pm-4 pm. This event will be an informational event focused on the Housing Sector of our community. MAIC, 1530 E Franklin Ave, Minneapolis. For info, call 612-354-2249.

May 24
We Wait In The Darkness Dance Performance

Rosy Simas dance choreographer will give a FREE performance of her solo work “We Wait In The Darkness” in a shared evening with Japaense-American choreographer Deborah Jinza Thayer. 7:30 pm. The Weitz Family Center for Creativity, Carleton College, 3rd Street East, Northfield, MN. For more info, see:

May 24-25
Safe Harbor Tribal Summit

This conference will be addressing the sexual exploitation and sex trafficking of Native youth in Minnesota. Attendees will gain an understanding of sex trafficking in Indian Country, working with survivors, and systemic responses to trafficking. This free event is hosted by the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community. The intended audience includes tribal leaders, tribal agency employees, professionals who work with Native youth, tribal community members, and county and state employees who work in Indian Country. May 24: 8:00 am.  May 25: 1:00 pm. Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, 2400 Mystic Lake Boulevard Northwest, Prior Lake, MN. For info, see:

May 25
Ain Dah Yung Center Open House

We look forward to taking this opportunity to acknowledge the great work that we are all accomplishing together...and how we can continue to strengthen our partnerships so that we all walk collectively with our children and families. 11 am - 2 pm. 11:00-11:45: ADY shelter tours and the ADYC Singers perform. 11:45: Feast. 12:30-1:00: Youth spokesperson and Ally of the Year Recognition. Door prize drawings from 11:30 - 2 pm.Ain Dah Yung, 1089 Portland Ave, Saint Paul. For info, see:

May 25
Wanaisguni Hikurus Hajawi

Reclaiming our Health 5K Run Walk will take place at Lake Phalen. Please bring your family to participate in this free event. It is open to American Indians of all ages and abilities. There will be tshirts, dinner and raffle prizes available. Raise awareness of  diabetes and obesity, and get some exercise. All ages and levels welcome. Wednesday: 5:00 - 7:30 pm. 1600 Phalen Dr, 1600 Phalen Dr. (Main Pavilion) Phalen Regional Park, Saint Paul, MN. To register, see: e/wanaisguni-hikurus-hajawi-5k-runwalk-registration-registration-24239448844. For info, contact Danielle DeLong at: siga.delong@ or 651-744-4018.

May 26
MAICC Saints Baseball Networking

Baseball season is here! We are excited to be hosting another networking event with the St. Paul Saints. Game Day event is at 7:05 pm. $30.00 for game ticket and barbeque while enjoying the company of the Minnesota American Indian Chamber members. Reserved area for the group. Seating is limited to the first 150 people so register early. All attendees will receive a group photo. For info, call 612-877-2117 or email: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it To register, see:

May 27
IHB’s 9th Annual Indian Month Event

Stop by for a healthy lunch, free IHB-Branded Gift (while supplies last), health education and screenings, faffle (2:30 pm) to win bikes and other prizes (must be present to win), and a community walk immediately following the event. 12:30 - 3 pm. IHB, 1315 E. 24th St., Minneapolis. For info, call 612-721-9843 or email: This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it

May 27
Mde Maka Ska Canoe Nations Gathering

The 7th Annual Canoe Nations Gathering “Mde Maka Ska” will take place on the south side of Lake Calhoun. This event gathers hundreds of Native American youth to remember and learn about their history of storytelling, canoeing, lacrosse, art, and water through interactive activities. Lake Calhoun (south side), Minneapolis. 9 am - 2 pm. For info, see:

May 31
Leech Lake Enrollees Meetings

Leech Lake Twin Cities LIC invites Leech Lake enrollees to the Local Indian Council Meeting from 6 - 8 pm. Minnesota Indian Women's Resource Center, 2300 15th Ave. S., Minneapolis.

May 31 (deadline)
Ethel Curry American Indian Leadership Scholarship

The Ethel Curry American Indian Leadership Scholarship program is accepting applications  through May 31 for the 2016-2017 academic year. This scholarship program will support undergraduate students up to $2,000 per academic year and graduate students up to $4,000 per academic year. Applications must be postmarked by May 31. Applications and instructions can also downloaded from the Indian Education page of the Minnesota Department of Education website:

Ricey on Indian Month and Prince
Thursday, May 05 2016
Written by Ricey Wild,
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The year: 1975. Scene: Franklin Avenue in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in the month of May. A young chubby brown Indian girl approches the newly opened Indian Center. It is a warm day and excitement fills the girl who was to see wondrous people and events she had never known before. There was a glorious Powwow in the gym and Dine’ (Navajo) Sand Painters in the atrium. Music filled the air while thousands of other people who looked like her were celebrating their own culture and being very proud of it. That, my friends, was the first Indian Month I can recall and I have kept it close to me ever since.

That particular day I saw my own peoples’ resilient strength even though I could not have expressed it as such at my age then. I felt joy and pride and validation as an American Indian female, which I had never had before. That day changed my life and, as I realize just as of my writing this, made me who I am today. My Indigenous culture means the world to me and if you have read any of my previous columns you know this.

Before moving to Minneapolis I lived in Bemidji, Minn., and was always on the periphery of any social circle and at the best of times was merely ignored rather than being actively bullied. After entering public school this was the norm and I passively accepted it because, well, that was just the way it was. It’s a white man’s world and my status didn’t matter.

In May the Spring season explodes again into fresh life, color and hope, and if I didn’t know the Lilac bushes would bloom again I’d have to give up. Indian Month is rejuvenation, new beginnings and the continuation of our Indian culture that refused to bow down and disappear into history books even if “They” would have you believe it to be that way. Nope! We are still here and will be even after the rest of yooz have gone to civilize the Moon or Mars.

This Is Our Land. It always has been and always will be. So I encourage you personally to celebrate with us because we are an inclusive type of people or yooz wouldn’t have made it this far, yanno? Understand that and keep it in your hearts that our Turtle Island, as we know it, has been our homeland for millenia – not merely a few thousand years as the historical liars would have it be.

We Indigenous people claim both continents of North and South America as our collective pan-Indian culture. We were here first and so we celebrate our existence despite the continuing agenda of genocide. We have not merely survived.

My people are the heart and soul of this place and time, and some non-Indians are finally waking up to the reality of the dire situation of climate change and the poisoning of clean water that we all need to live. Ask yourself if moentary profit (not yours) is worth your children’s children’s lives. Think Indian. Get involved in pro-human and -animal and -plant life groups. To me that would be the greatest honor you can do for the first people of this land. For those whom already do I say Chii Miigwech.

At 19 years young a gorgeous young man from Minneapolis made and played and produced an album “For You”. His name was Prince. We Indian girls were immediate adoring fans and he has been a part of my life since, and I have always loved him for him. Prince liked women who looked like me; dark eyes, black hair and an air of sassiness.

Once outside of The Oz nightclub in St. Paul he followed me upstairs and I was too intimidated to go for it. Regrets? You betcha. But I have a 1981 autograph from Prince signed, you guess it, in Purple from a felt pen I had. He said, “It’s purple” and smiled so even then that was his color.

I love that he was signing autographs recently with the tag, “Be Wild”. I take it personally. I will. Since then I’ve seen him perform at many concerts and at Paisley Park where I saw him shred and was brought into another world of genius and pure love.

The day he died I was crying and listening to his “Come” album alone in the dark. At the very end he whispers, “I Love You”. I’ma keep that in my heart. I love you back my Sweet Prince.

My beloved Aubid and LaPrairie Family is suffering another great loss and I give my love and prayers for you all. Biisa, your Old Antie is here for you always. I love you.

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