Tribal member voted homecoming king


Justice Napeahi voted homecoming king

Article by Jeannie; photo submitted by Misty Napeahi

 TULALIP, Washington – Tulalip tribal member Justice Napeahi was recently voted senior homecoming king of Marysville Pilchuck High School.  Nominated by his teachers, Justice was then voted in as king by the student body.

  Honored by his nomination, Justice exclaimed, “This can’t be true, no way, this is such a cool feeling!”

  A down-to-earth kid with a great attitude, his motto in life is to always be nice, it will get you further in life.

“I have a lot of friends at school and each friend I have a different hand shake for. It’s cool to have something unique with so many people,” said Justice.

 Those who know Justice are aware of his passion for music. He plays percussion ensemble drums at high school, and after school, he practices with his band, Tomorrow May Fail, which was formed three years ago.

 Justice gets his inspiration from his role model, Matt Greiner, a drummer for the band August Burns Red. He advises fellow students to, “Use your inspiration as fuel to succeed, it makes you whole.”

 Misty and Jay Napeahi are the proud parents of Justice.

David Spencer Sr. shares his passion of poetry



David Spencer read poetry at Hibulb Cultural Center

Article and photo by Jeannie Briones

TULALIP, Washington –  The Tulalip Hibulb Cultural Center, known for its artistic and educational series of workshops which highlight storytelling, lectures, culture and film, have added a new series that features poetry.

 Tulalip Tribal elder and author, David Spencer Sr., read a series of poems on October 4th at the Hibulb center, capturing the audience with his ebb and flow of words. Events that he witnessed in his life and the poets and teachers who inspired him to write poetry inspired these poems.

 “I took four courses at the UW from Nelson Bentley. He guided me on how to write poetry, to take one form all the way through the poem,” said David. “Poetry is like painting.”

  Writing poetry since 1973, he reconnected with his grandparents’ first language, and began his writing process anew in 1997 by using the Lushootseed language as a creative outlet. This transformation brought new meaning to his poetry that he had not found while writing in English.

 Poetry helped David through dark periods in his life, especially after his wife passed away. Sylvia Plath and Ted Hues are just a couple of poets he admires. He read their poems over and over to absorb their words and meaning.

 In the poem, “The Sacred Smoke,” David describes a traditional memorial burning, the feeling of being on-edge, being reborn, and having no temptation of worldly needs.

David’s first memoir, “Lifted to the Edge: the Reflections of a Tulalip Grandson,” is a skillfully written exploration of his life. You can find a copy of his book at theTulalipHibulbCulturalCentergiftshop. Visit for information and a schedule of events.


Tulalip child found unresponsive in car, mother arrested

By Kim Kalliber

On October 8, 2012 the Tulalip Police Department received a call about an unresponsive infant found inside a parked car. Emergency services were dispatched to the 1000 block of Marine Drive. A 17-month-old girl was taken to Providence Medical Center where she was pronounced dead. Her two-year-old sister, also found in the car, was taken to Children’s Hospital in Seattle where she is expected to recover.

The girls’ mother, a Tulalip Tribal member, is being held at Snohomish County Jail, facing possible charges of endangerment and failure to care for the children.

Community members at Tulalip describe the mother as a “good mom,” despite the fact that within the past year, she was under investigation by the Department of Social and Health Services for allegations of abuse involving the younger girl. DSHS had closed its investigation for undisclosed reasons, but due to the death of the child after closure of the investigation, their fatality review board will review the case.

The incident is being investigated by the Tulalip Police Department in coordination with the FBI. An autopsy was performed, but the results are unavailable while the investigation is underway

Raising awareness to save lives and give hope

Legacy of Healing presents interactive play based on domestic violence

Article by Jeannie Briones

TULALIP, Washington – Domestic Violence happens more often than people realize. Behind closed doors, many victims fall pray to abuse. Without help, these victims are controlled by their abuser and live in a world of isolation, helplessness, fear, intimidation, denial, coercion and threats that usually turn into violence. Many battered victims are afraid to get help in their vulnerable state of mind.

There is help for victims of abuse. Tulalip Tribes Legacy of Healing Advocacy Center and Safe House advocates are here to listen and offer assistances to victims and help them understand they are not alone.

To end domestic violence, it is important to educate the community. October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and Tulalip Tribes Legacy of Healing Advocacy Center is recognizing the rising epidemic of domestic violence.  In an effort to address this matter, they have collaborated with the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence in presenting “In her shoes,” an interactive play based on real-life experiences of women with abusive partners. Participants will move, do, think and experience the lives of battered women.

Deborah Parker, Tulalip Tribes Vice Chairwoman and spokesperson for the Violence Against Women Act, will provide the traditional opening, along with a meet and greet of Legacy staff, and Traci Underwood with the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence will facilitate the interactive event.

“In Her Shoes” will be presented on two days; October 18th will be for Tulalip Tribes employees and October 30th is open to employees and community members. Both showings will be held in room 162 of the Tulalip Administration Building from noon-3:00 p.m. and lunch will be served.

Are you are living with domestic violence? The most common form of domestic violence is physical violence. The signs of domestic violence include being hit, slapped, kicked or punched by your partner, including threats, injury to pets, jealousy and destroying of property.

Battered victims are reluctant or unable to report the abuse, but advocators at Legacy of Healing offer a safety plan that might help the victims feel safer before an incident, in the midst of a violent incident, and if victims decide to leave. When the battered victim is ready to leave, they can call an advocate staff at Legacy of Healing to address their needs.

Call to talk with an advocate at Legacy of Healing Advocacy Center and Safe House for question or concerns at 360-716-4100, Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. or for immediate help call 911, DVS 24 Hour Crisis Hotline 425-252-2873, or Washington State Hotline 800-562-6025.

Deborah Parker teaches youth about Native history, culture and voting

Article and Photos by Jeannie Briones

TULALIP, Washington – With the 2012 Presidential Election upon us, attention has turned to Native American voting. Political analysts say the Native voters could easily affect the presidential race this year.

Historically, Native Americans have one of the lowest voter turnout rates of any ethnic group. Considering the fact that Native Americans were the last group in get the right to vote, in some cases at late as the 1960’s, it’s no wonder that campaigns and organizers are struggling with ways to reach Native Americans. This year, tribal leaders are speaking out more than ever, encouraging tribal members to vote.

Deborah Parker, Tulalip Tribes Vice Chairwoman spoke to students at TotemMiddle Schoolin Marysville, on October 11th about Tulalip Tribes culture, history, and government and the importance of why Native Americans should vote.

“It’s important for our people to vote because we need leaders inCongress,U.S.Government, state, and local governments that understand who we are. If we get the wrong person [in office] that doesn’t understand our treaties and way of life, we could lose what our ancestors gave up and what our people have worked many generations to preserve and protect, as a sovereign nation,” said Deborah.

As Chairwoman, Deborah talks with the United States Government about treaty rights and agreement s with the federal government. She even shook hands with President Obama, reminding him to not forget about the U.S. Constitution and the treaties.

By meeting with students, Deborah aims to teach them about the true history of Native Americans, something she feels is still largely ignored in today’s curriculum.

“I went to speak at few years ago at a high school in Lynnwood, and some students raised their hands, and said they didn’t even know Indians existed,” said Deborah. “Our government and our schools do not educate our people about what took place in Native American history. I encourage each and every one of you to educate your mind, it makes you a stronger person.”

Deborah also encouraged the students to search the internet to discover true facts of United States history and learn more about their history, to not only expand their minds, but to understand how the past links to the present and the future, and the importance of making your voice heard in the electoral process.

Heritage Lady Hawks pull in victories

Teri Jimicum serves the ball for the Lady Hawks

Article by Sarah Miller

Tulalip, WA— Though their volleyball season was off to a rocky start with a few losses, the Heritage Lady Hawks have pushed through the defeats to find their first two wins. On Friday, September 28th, the girls faced Skykomish and emerged victorious with a score of three to one. Tuesday, October 2nd, they faced Lummi Nation and triumphed over them with a score of three to zero. Way to go Lady Hawks!

Tulalip leader says Native voters help protect treaties

Don Hatch, Jr., Tulalip Tribes Board of Director

Article and photo submitted by F. Hillery

TULALIP, Washington – Don Hatch Jr., Tulalip Tribes Board of Director, and long time advocate for tribal children and education is appealing to all eligible Native Americans to vote in the general election.

“This is about protecting our Treaty and our future,” said Hatch.  “We need to support the candidates who will represent our interests in Olympia and Washington D.C. – by voting we help to maintain our livelihood.”

There are many reasons why some Native Americans do not vote.  Some feel that only the tribal political process is important to their interests.  Others believe that because Native Americans are such a small percent of the larger U.S. population their votes do not matter.  This couldn’t be further from the truth, says Hatch.

Hatch sees the protection of the Treaties as the number one reason why Native Americans should vote.  “It has taken some time, but we have built good relationships with our representatives, who know our issues and are willing to defend them, and if we don’t vote for them, it is going to be more difficult to maintain our treaty rights.”

“Everything we do here in Tulalip begins with the Treaty,” said Hatch.  “Housing, education, health care – these are all issues that are central to our well-being – and we need to do everything we can to make sure we elect representatives who understand why these issues are so important to us.”

Hatch is motivated to get out the Native Vote because he sees it as protecting future generations of Tulalip people.  He would like to see more participation in the political process from young people because the tribe will one day be in their hands.  “We need to get our young people to understand how important their participation in the political process is,” said Hatch.  “Whether it is a tribal election, a school board election, or a general election – it all matters.”

Hatch has long been part of the local political process and has learned a few important lessons.  The most important lesson is that every vote really does count.  “One year when I was up for re-election to the school board I won by 113 votes.  Afterwards I thought about all the Tulalip people who did not vote – if they had it wouldn’t have been so close.”  This is important he said because that year his opponents were not friends of the Tribes and they would not have been advocates of tribal children getting a good education.

Tulalip Hibulb Cultural Center welcomes new exhibit

Gilbert King George spear fishes on the White River during the “Fish-Ins” of the 1970’s.









Article by Sarah Miller; photo courtesy of Tulalip Hibulb Cultural Center

TULALIP, Washington – A new exhibit will be coming to the Tulalip Hibulb Cultural Center. Salish Bounty: Traditional Native American Foods of Puget Sound will be on loan from the Burke Museum until the end of January. This exciting new exhibit features Tulalip artifacts that are currently not on display, including items used for hunting, fishing, cooking, gathering and storing, along with historic photos. There will also be real food ingredients on display as well as videos and audio of Coast Salish people talking about food. This exhibit will open November 3rd.

“This is a traveling exhibit,” said Marketing/Membership/PR Mytyl Hernandez. “It will be located at the end of the Canoe Hall, outside of the classrooms. Salish Bounty connects archaeological and historical research about thousands of years of food traditions in the Puget Sound area to current efforts to revitalize these food traditions in the region. Salish Bounty was created in close partnership with members of the Native Coast Salish community and features their history, voices and efforts.”

Visitors will learn about the cuisines of the Coast Salish people, along with the cultural values of respect, hospitality, community, and the environment of this region.

“This exhibit is broken into three themes,” Mytyl went on. “The way things were, dispossession and struggle, and the way things are. Our visitors will get the opportunity to learn about each in detail as well as over 280 plants and animal species used as food found from various archeological sites around Puget Sound.”

Coast Salish diets are incredibly diverse and always have been, according to Mytyl. The cuisine and its underlying values have survived major cultural shifts, from depopulation and loss of access to land and water, to intrusion into cultural practices, families and communities. Nowadays, there is serious revival of traditional foods that incorporates new ingredients, new communication technologies, and regained access to land and water, yet it maintains the same cultural values.

This is not the only new exhibit coming to Hibulb. At some point in 2013, the Veteran’s Exhibit, which is a rotating gallery, will be removed and replaced with a yet unknown exhibit. Hibulb will be rotating the temporary gallery two to four times a year. Sounds like a good time to stop on by the Cultural Center and check things out. Remember, admission is free for tribal members, $10.00 for adults, $7.00 for seniors and children five years and younger are free. For more information on prices and times, visit


Halloween Safety Tips

Wear clothing that reflects light when you go out trick or treating








Article by Sarah Miller

There are many precautions to take when preparing for your Halloween season. Trick or treating is fun, but it can be dangerous at times. The same goes for carving up your scary Jack O’Lanterns. It’s important to take care when you are preparing for this holiday.

We will start with pumpkin carving. This is a fun activity that gears everyone up for the Halloween season. However, it involves using sharp objects to carve a vegetable with. A child should NEVER be given a knife to cut with. There are many pumpkin kits out there with safety tools appropriate for kids to use if they are the ones doing the carving. Even then, be sure that an adult is around to supervise. Though they are safe, accidents can still happen.

If you are doing the carving sans the pumpkin carving kit, be sure that your child does not jerk the pumpkin or table the pumpkin is sitting on. You don’t want to get cut while carving that pumpkin. Make sure your child is safely seated away from you and the knife.

If you aren’t interested in carving pumpkins, an even safer alternative is painting them. This is an activity that everyone can partake in. You can even get some glue and decorate the pumpkins with sequins or other decorations.

With that said, the biggest thrill of the Halloween season is dressing up and going out trick or treating for candy. This can be a lot of fun, but kids going out should be supervised by a responsible adult.

Make sure your child is dressed in a safe costume. If they are wearing masks, make sure they can see out of the eyeholes. Though some costumes require the person to dress completely in black, this can be dangerous when trick or treating late into the night. Make sure there is a bit of white or something that will reflect light on them. Also, don’t forget flashlights!

Be sure to know your route when taking the kiddies out to gather candy. This will ensure that you don’t get lost in an unfamiliar neighborhood. Also, get on the website and check the neighborhoods you plan on trick or treating in for registered sex offenders.

Make sure your child does not go into any stranger’s house or car. These people could just be being nice, but better safe than sorry. Kids may be confused by this but explain to them that some people aren’t nice and want to hurt others. Then tell them that if anyone tries to coax them into a house or car, or approaches them and tries to grab them, to scream as loud as they can and to kick and flail as much as possible.

Watch your children as they cross streets. Teach them how to cross properly and not just run in front of cars driving by. Make sure they hold your hand as they cross the street.

When taking your kids trick or treating, be sure that they respect the yard they wander through to get to the front door. This means no vandalism! Some people enjoy a little trickery more than treats on Halloween. Some kids toilet paper houses, egg houses or even smash those perfectly carved pumpkins. This is rude and not funny. Though it seems funny at the time, the person who has to clean up that mess doesn’t really think so. Also, be kind to any of the owner’s pets. They may seem loud and annoying, but they’re probably just freaked out that so many costumed individuals have wandered into their domain.

Once the Halloween fun is over, it’s time to inspect the candy! Throw away all candy that has an opened wrapper. Inspect all candy and anything that looks odd, throw it away. It’s also important to make sure your child doesn’t snack on any candy while they’re out trick or treating. As for baked goods, this is a judgment call to be made by the parents. If it came from someone you trust, then you can let your kid eat it. If it came from someone you don’t know, maybe toss it.

Keep these tips in mind when you prepare your child for a night of fun trick or treating on All Hallow’s Eve!

Hitch a ride with Tulalip Transit

Mary Hargrove discusses Tulalip Transit









Article and photos by Sarah Miller

This month’s community meeting, held at the Tulalip admin building on September 25th, was presented by the Tulalip Transit Department. During the meeting, the employees of said department discussed how the transit program works and new changes that they hope to make.

“This program is a free service,” said Associate Planner II Mark Hamilton. “We don’t get revenue from it. It is funded by grants that allow us to operate this service. It is open to the public, both tribal members and nontribal members.”

The planning process for Tulalip Transit went into effect in 2009. A survey was mailed and emailed to the community and tribal government. It was discovered that there was a need for a transit program specific to Tulalip and different than the Marysville City Transit bus that comes through the reservation. Mark was able to get grants from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the WSDOT Consolidated Grant Program and the Public Transportation on Indian Reservations Program. These grants ensure that this program remains free to its riders.

“We calculated the number of employees and residents that were in need of this service,” Mark went on. “We were able to implement two routes, and we hope to implement a third.”

The two routes are the John Sam Lake route and the Tulalip Bay route. The third route they are working on is the Bay to Village route.

According to Transit Supervisor Mary Hargrove, the Tulalip Bay route has had a ridership of 11,796 while the John Sam Lake route has a ridership of 2,920. This was calculated from January 2011 to July 2012.

“Last year, we evaluated the data, and started proposing different suggestions,” Mary said. Those changes include Demand Response Service. This service would provide on-reservation transit services for riders at social service locations. Riders could call a number and get a ride to places like the pharmacy, beda?chelh, family services and the homeless shelter, to name a few. Also discussed was a Rideshare service. This service is similar to a carpool for people who work on the reservation. Participants would be matched to others who live in their neighborhood and assign vehicles for them to travel to and from work. Operating expenses for this service would be covered by the employees that participate. It would be $20 to $25 a week. These services aren’t provided yet but could be in the near future.

“We are also working on getting permanent bus stops,” Mary continued. “We are working to get these installed, though it has taken longer to do. They will replace the pylons that mark Tulalip transit stops.”

If you need to get a ride from Tulalip Transit, you can call 360-716-4206 or you can email at