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history of owamni yomni.jpg A History of Owamni Yomni

As the St. Anthony Lock closes by Congressional order, The Circle's Jon Lurie offers a history of this important Dakota cultural site. Read more ...


mark trahant.jpg GUEST COLUMNIST: Trahant Reports

Mark Trahant offers his thoughts on the upcoming Republican presidential candidates and their potential impact on Indian Country.

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The Arts

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A Goldilocks show at Bockley Gallery

A summer show follows the tradition of group shows that adhere to the Goldilocks principle — not too big, not too small, but just right. Read more ... 

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Dakota language a resurgence among Native youth
Saturday, September 10 2011
Written by By Jeff Severns Guntzel MinnPost,
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dakota language resurgence 1.jpgFrom a park picnic table a woman named Ruby watches her 12-year-old granddaughter, Shayla, answer a reporter's questions. They are mostly one-word answers. Are you having fun learning the Dakota language? "Yes." Is it hard? "No." What's the hardest part? "Sentences."
Shayla is as tiny as her answers are short. She's at the Birch Coulee County Park just outside of Morton to celebrate the end of a summer camp for Dakota youth learning the language. Look in any direction and there are clusters of kids playing language games.
Her parents don't speak the language. Ruby, her grandmother, doesn't speak it either. "My grandparents raised me," she says, "and Dakota is all they ever spoke. But then they took it away from us in the schools and we lost it. I'm proud of Shayla. Very proud."
Lacrosse brings youth together across cultures
Saturday, September 10 2011
Written by Story by Art Coulson Photos by Tyler Isenmann,
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lacrosse youth 1.jpgIt could have been a pitched battle of Eagles, fought swiftly and without mercy. But the lacrosse game played on a recent hot summer day between the Eagles of Prairie Island Indian Community and the Eagles of Apple Valley was a friendlier affair, pitting two teams who respected the other's sportsmanship and reverence for the Creator's Game.
In fact, the two groups of boys - separated by history, culture and geography - came together to play, not one team against the other, but on mixed teams playing for the love of the game.

The game, at a small park in suburban Burnsville, and the family picnic that followed was the idea of a group of Valley Athletic Association youth lacrosse players who were inspired by the Prairie Island team's sportsmanship when the two teams played earlier in the summer.

"We had a really, really good time  [playing against Prairie Island]," said Adam Johnson, an Apple Valley eighth-grader and one of the organizers of the family get-together. "I wanted them to come here so that we could do something fun with them."

"My son came home after the first game and said, 'Mom, that was so much fun," said Tyler Isenmann, a professional photographer who has visited Prairie Island several times to shoot photos of the young players. "He was so impressed with their sportsmanship. There was no smack talk."

SEPTEMBER community calendar
Saturday, September 10 2011
Written by The Circle Staff,
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Sept. 2
New Native Theatre
Well Red play reading series: BUT BABY I LOVE YOU by Sandy White Hawk and George McCauley, directed by Rhiana Yazzie. Meet Wolfie and Cecilia. Witness as they love each other, hate each other, heal each other. Join us for this first look at Sandy and George's new play written about dealing with the complexities of loving and being Native. There's sure to be lots of NDN humor too. FREE. Starts at 7 pm at the Minneapolis American Indian Center, 1530 E. Franklin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN.

SEPTEMBER powwow calendar:
Saturday, September 10 2011
Written by The Circle Staff,
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Sept. 2-4
Leech Lake Labor Day Powwow
Wee Gitchie Ne Me I Dim Leech Lake Labor Day Powwow. Located by Palace Casino. Cass Lake, MN. FMI: Leah Monroe at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or 218-760-3127.

Sept. 8-11
United Tribes Powwow
42nd United Tribes International Powwow. Lone Star Arena, Bismarck, ND. FMI: Red Koch at 701-255-3285 or This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or see:?
Minneapolis Superintendent speaks:
Saturday, September 10 2011
Written by The Circle Staff,
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Creating a Culture of Yes

As we begin the 2011-2012 school year, I am excited to see our students engaged in learning and achieving high results. Minneapolis Public Schools teachers and staff members are prepared to promote student success and accelerate student achievement.

We have been working to strengthen our organization internally and externally with a specific goal in mind: "Creating a culture of yes."

We are MPS and we are committed to our mission: We exist to ensure that all students learn. We are also committed to our vision: Every child college ready.
It Aint easy being indian:
Saturday, September 10 2011
Written by The Circle Staff,
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Dear Teacher, "What I did this summer."
Ahem! It could have been an awful summer season in a lot of ways. First, spring skipped us entirely up here so we went straight from winter to summer. Even the mosquitoes were disgusted because they got a late start on feasting on the delicious, chubby, pale, sun-starved people who inhabit these northern climes.

Then last month my car got repo'ed for no logical or rational reason that I or anyone else can comprehend. Also, for an entire day I was just one step ahead of the Law; the Rezberry Riders were after me again, just for keeping what was mine.  

So yeah, it could have really sucked but my summer did not. In fact I had an amazing, good time. Truly the best times I've had after recent years of enduring so much misery. I am a lucky woman. Sure the IRS is taking over half my paycheck, I still have a job; my Mommy took my car away but I still get to work and play. I'm happily single and share my home with furry roommates so I'm never alone or bored, in fact I wish Mitzi and the cats would keep the drama to a minimum.
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