Canoes Carvery set to reopen Friday, December 10, at Tulalip Resort Casino

A LONG-TIME FAVORITE FOR CASUAL FARE, “THE CARVERY” WILL BE OPEN EACH WEEK FRIDAY THROUGH SUNDAY

TULALIP, Wash. (December 9, 2021) – A favorite option for casual dining at Tulalip Resort Casino, Canoes Carvery is set to reopen Friday, December 10providing a quick bite, beverages and a respite from gaming fun and entertainment offerings. Canoes Carvery offers freshly made sandwiches, burgers, soups, salads, wraps, pastries and more and will be open each Friday through Sunday from 6 to 11 p.m. 

Menu favorites include the Jackpot Burger, turkey bacon wrap, French dip and nacho grande. Canoes Carvery is located on the southwest end of the casino floor next to Canoes Cabaret, Snohomish County’s premier live entertainment venue.

When all you want is everything, Canoes Carvery is among several culinary choices at Tulalip Resort Casino where guests experience award-winning cuisine, Asian-inspired dishes and high-quality casual fare, all under one roof.

For more information about Tulalip Resort Casino visit www.tulalipcasino.com.

Community members collecting donations for local non-profit

The season of giving

By Shaelyn Hood; photos courtesy of Dominic Flores

For the past few years, Dominic Flores, Vivi Do, and a handful of their fellow Tulalip Resort Casino workers have joined together to raise funds and collect new clothing and essential item donations for people in need. Each year, they choose a different non-profit organization to work with and contribute to. 

Last year’s event was organized for a women’s homeless shelter in Everett. It was a success and they put together over 300 bags worth of clothing and essential items. This year, the group decided on Hand in Hand.

Hand in Hand is a non-profit located in Everett, Washington. They provide hope and opportunity for children and families in need by providing services focused on protection, provision, and permanence. They offer foster support services, a resource closet with clothing and essential items for children, rental/utilities assistance, emergency food boxes, child academics mentoring, and work with the Department of Children, Youth and Families (DCYF) to provide visitation to youth and families that are going through the Child Welfare system.

Dominic’s passion for helping others stems from his early life. Through most of Dominic’s childhood, his family utilized programs and non-profits like Hand in Hand. Now that he is in a more financially stable point in his life, he knew it was time for him to start giving back. Dominic also works alongside his son, “I want to inspire him. We’re blessed to have our jobs, and we’re in a position to give back.” 

Currently, Dominic and Vivi have a Facebook page with a list of items that are needed, including but not limited to: New or very gently used clothes for all sizes from toddler to adult, hairbrushes/combs, hoodies, sweats, leggings, t-shirts, shorts, new shoes, new socks, new underwear/boxer-briefs preferred for boys, diapers, wipes, new pajamas, etc. Their Facebook page also includes a direct link to an Amazon wish list of items that specific children with Hand in Hand are wanting. 

Dominic and Vivi will be doing their first drop off at the Hand in Hand office on December 12th, but they will continue taking donations up until Christmas. 

If finances are tight for you this season, Hand in Hand is also looking for volunteers to sort through donations, organize them, and help with their day-to-day ventures.

You can find the Amazon wish list at: https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/3N4HUL19X79T2/ref=nav_wishlist_lists_2?_encoding=UTF8&type=wishlist&fbclid=IwAR07YlrImoHJK2AhUzwVZg9VAUNi87G0HiSTaCLzLQgatTou86a6WY5NyNc

So far, they have been able to fulfill 20 children’s wish lists and are looking to continue to help more. Without a specific goal in mind, Dominic, Vivi and friends are hoping to help as many children as possible. 

Flores said, “I just want people to give. Whether it’s through Hand in Hand, or other organizations like Salvation Army, churches, homeless shelters, etc. I just want people that are struggling out there to know that there are people who want to help, that will go out of their way to donate something and make them happy. Everyone deserves something for Christmas.”

Flores went on to talk about possibly extending to other non-profits in the future, running food drives, toy drives, etc., investing in a storage pod to hold all the items, and overall growing and reaching more people.

The donations are currently being taken and stored with Dominic Flores. For more information, please refer to their Facebook page “Christmasgiving” or contact Dominic Flores directly at: dominicflores1992@icloud.com or (360) 228 – 8063. 

Santa Clause is coming to town!

Tulalip Bay Fire Department is bringing Christmas cheer to your neighborhood

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News

“We’ve built a relationship with our community that is so strong and we want to continue to build that,” said Tulalip Bay Firefighter, Derek Kuhn. “This is a great way, even with COVID, for us to get out there and see everybody and be able to give back toward the greater good.”

The Tulalip Bay Fire Department will be visiting neighborhoods throughout the reservation this year on Friday December 17 and Saturday December 18. As always, there will be a jolly guest among the local fire squad who will be paying all the children of Tulalip a special visit before his big night on Christmas Eve. 

Every year, the fire department teams up with none other than Santa Clause during the holiday season, not only to bring smiles to all the families who reside at Tulalip, but to also collect food, goods, and funds for those in need this time of year. 

“All of our donations go to the Tulalip Church of God,” exclaimed Derek. “We’ll be accepting non-perishable items. A lot of what we get is canned foods, but anything non-perishable. We also accept cash donations that we send to the red church as well.”

In addition to organizing the yearly Santa Run event, the fire department will also be sponsoring a family through beda?chelh and Tulalip Family Services. Although this act of kindness might not have been highlighted as much as the Santa Run, it is something that is equally important to the department as they’ve consecutively participated in the local Sponsor-A-Child initiative over the years. 

Through the Santa Run, the Tulalip Bay Fire Department has raised thousands of dollars and collected hundreds upon hundreds of pounds of food each year. During the weekend of this year’s food drive, the crew plans on being out in the community during the hours of 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. each day and will visit multiple neighborhoods to help spread Christmas cheer. 

The schedule for this year’s Santa Run event is as follows:

Friday, December 17

  • Madison Estates 
  • Tulare
  • Spee-Bi-Dah 
  • Tulalip Shores 
  • 83rd Place NW
  • Hermosa 

Saturday, December 18

  • 43rd Street NW 
  • Potlatch 
  • 56th to 62nd 
  • Y Site
  • Mission 
  • Lower Projects 
  • Walter Moses/28th Site
  • Ezra Hatch/Larry Price 
  • Mission Highlands 
  • Silver Village 

As they visit each neighborhood, the fire department will be updating their whereabouts through a live Google Maps tracker so families can anticipate when they will arrive to their area of residence. Santa and company are requesting that families wear their masks and practice social distancing to prevent the spread of the virus. 

The fire department is also asking that any food donations are bagged-up. And if you plan on graciously donating via check, that it is made out to the Tulalip Bay Firefighters Association. 

Derek shared, “Personally, this will be my third Santa Run. I love getting out there just as much as everyone else here [at the department]. We love to be there for our community and get out to see all those people who we already know, and on top of that we get to meet new people every year. It’s awesome that it brings joy not only to the children, but it is great seeing the parents out there excited as well.”

For more information, be sure to follow the Tulalip Bay Fire Department Facebook page. 

Students celebrate Tulalip Day

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News

Prior to a four-day holiday weekend, the students of Quil Ceda Tulalip Elementary (QCT) and Tulalip Heritage High spent the morning of November 24 immersed in Tulalip culture. Engaging in song and dance, and even speaking traditional Lushootseed, the kids were excited to participate in the return of the school’s yearly Tulalip Day celebration.

An official holiday for the Tribe and surrounding communities, Tulalip Day is observed on the last Friday of every November and honors the sovereignty, resiliency, heritage, traditions and culture of the Tulalip Tribes. 

QCT Vice-Principal Chelsea Craig shared, “This is significant because the colonized education system attempted genocide on our people at the Tulalip boarding school. Every generation since then, our people have not been able to be proud of who they are and be their full-selves in public school systems. We’re changing the paradigm of that. We are providing a place where every person can be proud of who they are, no matter what culture they come from, and know that we are one community, one family. We are reclaiming Indigenous space in a public school system that aimed to erase that.”

Before joining the high schoolers, the elementary students gathered at the front of their school to pay tribute and learn a little bit about the Tulalip Tribes killer whale flag.

“We started today’s celebration with a flag ceremony because the Marysville School District has adopted raising the Tulalip Tribes flag at all campuses,” explained Chelsea. “From the leadership of JJ Jenson, our former vice-principal, he worked with our Tulalip veterans to raise the Tribe’s flag many years ago. We’ve been raising our tribal flag on our sovereign land for many years and we wanted to honor that work today.” 

Led by Tony Hatch, Tulalip Tribes Vice-Chairman Glen Gobin and several tribal leaders, the students offered a Tulalip Canoe Family song, about the importance of pulling together, which represented the partnership between the Tribe and the Marysville School District. 

All students were encouraged to wear their traditional regalia on Tulalip Day and a number of beautifully designed shawls, vests, blankets, ribbon skirts, beaded jewelry and cedar-woven hats and headbands were on full-display. 

When the flag ceremony concluded, the QCT students marched across campus to the Francy J. Sheldon gymnasium where Heritage students awaited their arrival, excited to get the festivities started. 

Glen Gobin opened the ceremony and shared a few words about the importance of Tulalip Day with the students.

He stated, “I am proud to witness this event and see all of the changes that have taken place. When I think back to when my grandmother went to school, she went to the boarding school here at Tulalip, and everything they did in that school was to strip them of their identity and deny them of being Native American. They tried to force them into assimilation into a non-Indian society. 

“We didn’t have the ability to go to school and exercise who we are and feel good about doing it, because we were still trying to fit in. To walk in here and see all the smiling faces, all of your pride, and to feel that is amazing. How far we’ve grown in that ability to be who we are and proud of who we are, that is important. That is what this day means. That’s what this month means, that recognition. Who you are, where you come from, to build that foundation so you can succeed in the future and pass on those teachings, those traditions, in a good way.”

Since November is also Native American Heritage month, Chelsea opened the floor up to all Indigenous nations, inviting everybody to share their culture with the students. MSD Native Liaisons, Terrance Sabbas and Matt Remle, sang a number of songs from their respective tribes throughout the hour-long ceremony, both on the round drum and their hand-drums, while powwow dancers took the floor, performing both traditional and fancy shawl.

To end the Tulalip Day celebration, Chelsea invited the drummers to the floor and encouraged all the students to take part in either signing and drumming or dancing. The bleachers were emptied as the drummers sang a potlatch song that is well-known through all Coast Salish territories and is played at various tempos. As the speed of the song gradually increased, so did the smiles and laughter throughout the entire gym. 

“A lot of our ceremonies have been canceled because of COVID, so today was important to me mainly because I got to see my culture and sing our songs at school,” expressed Tulalip Heritage High School student and Tribal member, Xavion Myles-Gilford. “Having the assembly today brought back that joy of being at our ceremonies. My favorite part of the day was right at the end, when everybody was dancing, and singing and cheering together, it almost made me cry.”

Tulalip Marina building named in honor of Charlie Cortez

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News

One year after the Tulalip community and various law enforcement agencies scoured the open waters and surrounding shorelines, hoping to find any sign of Tulalip Fish and Wildlife Officer Charlie Cortez who was reported lost at sea while on duty, they convened once more at the Tulalip Bay Marina in his honor. 

Ever since that stormy night of November 17, 2020, Charlie’s family, friends, Tribe and fellow officers have been grappling with his absence and missing his presence. Charlie’s infectious laughter and one-of-a-kind personality often left anyone who had the pleasure of interacting with him with a huge smile, much like his very own, a signature known by those who held him dearest throughout the reservation.

Officer Cortez’s signature smile will live on forever, not only in memory of his loved ones, but at the front of the Tulalip Marina Building on a plaque that officially identifies the recently constructed establishment as the Tulalip Tribes Charlie Joe Cortez Marina Building.

“November 17th is a day we’ll remember forever, having one of our officers lost in the line of duty,” said Tulalip Chairwoman, Teri Gobin. “It’s important to take time to heal as a community. Not only his children but his family, you are his legacy. You will be moving forward with his work, his words, bringing his memory through.”

 She continued, “My heart breaks for each and every one of you. To lose a son, a brother, grandson, a father, it’s something that can’t be replaced. But eventually every time you think about him, you’ll be thinking of the happy times, the laughs and good times you had together. We know he is okay now, he’s with our people, he’s with his grandparents and family on the other side. It’s an honor to be here today to support the family and naming this building after our fallen officer, Charlie Joe Cortez.”

Lushootseed Language Warrior, Natosha Gobin, said a prayer in the traditional sduhubs language before Tribal members Glen Gobin (Vice-Chair), Kelly Moses and Jason Gobin offered a song and a blessing of the new building. Tulalip Chief of Police Chris Sutter also shared a few heartfelt remarks as he fondly reminisced the fallen hero and extended his love and condolences to the family. Chief Sutter then called upon Charlie’s daughter, Peyton, to help unveil the plaque. On her count, they removed the blanket which covered the engraving together, much to the cheers, tears, claps and hand squeezes of the crowd of approximately one-hundred people. 

Following the ceremony, Charlie’s family held a luncheon at the Tulalip Gathering Hall, where they gifted the Tribe’s BOD and executive staff members with blankets for the special honoring, as well as bracelets, which read Charlie’s name and End of Watch date. They also offered t-shirts and candles to the community for their support over the past year.  

“It was very heartwarming to see the community gather together today, as well as the other law enforcement agencies that came in our support,” expressed Charlie’s mother, Paula Cortez. “Seeing the plaque for the first time, it was very beautiful. It warmed my heart to see the effort that went into dedicating the Marina building in Charlie Joe Cortez’s name. I am deeply grateful to the Board of Directors for making the decision to dedicate the building, it really means a lot to us and the family.

“It’s going to be a place where his kids can go to pay tribute to their dad on special days like his birthday or Father’s Day. We haven’t had a real place to go except for the memorial wall that we decorated down there. I think it’s important for the kids and the future generations to see that the Tribe honored Charlie in a good way as a fallen officer. The ceremony was just beautiful and it really touched all of our hearts.”

Invisible no more: Tulalip flag soars at every Marysville School District campus

By Micheal Rios, Tulalip news

For the first time ever, the red, white and black colors of the Tulalip flag are soaring over every Marysville School District campus. Tulalip’s iconic orca was raised up at each elementary, middle school, high school, and even District headquarters during the week of November 17th

In each instance, the 3 foot by 5 foot cloth signifying the Tulalip Tribes as a sovereign nation was raised by a proud student representative and young Tulalip culture bearer.

“About a decade ago, my coworker Ricky Belmont and I started asking the schools we work at to fly the Tulalip Tribes flag out of recognition for the tribe being a sovereign nation and to honor the treaty lands that schools are built upon,” explained Matt Remle, Indian Education Program Coordinator for Marysville School District. “Last spring, Marysville Pilchuck High School became the first school to agree and now flies the flag daily.

“Last month, in collaboration with the Tulalip Tribes and the MSD equity department, [we received authorization] to raise the Tulalip flag at the district office. By the end of November, every school in the district was raising the Tulalip flag. No more erasure, no more invisibility!”

It’s no secret that Marysville and Tulalip have a history rife with conflict and misunderstanding, especially when it comes to the subject of education. However, flying the Tulalip flag is a symbol of hope for the future. It’s an action that intends to create a better partnership between the two communities, while acknowledging the Tribe’s self-governed and federally recognized status.

“I grew up in a time when it wasn’t safe to be Indian in the Marysville School District,” shared Quil Ceda Vice Principal Chelsea Craig. “We had to check being Indian at the door. We didn’t see ourselves in the school. We didn’t see ourselves in the curriculum. So now, this simple act of raising our Tulalip flag on these school campuses becomes a huge act of healing for our Marysville/Tulalip community. This is the joining of two communities on the homeland of our people.

“This is the start of a must-needed change,” she continued. “My dream is seeing our own curriculum in the schools and for Since Time Immemorial to be taught in every classroom, not just in history. And for all the youth here at this history making moment, you are the ones who know how to do this world better. I see you doing that every day. Treating one another with love and respect. You are our future leaders, so I want you all to be witness of this work here today. When you’re older, you’ll remember why we did this. You’ll know what it really means to be one as a Marysville/Tulalip community and you’ll make sure this kind of good work continues.”

From the schools to the District headquarters, every time the orca was raised up it was treated as a moment to educate and celebrate. Tulalip representatives from our own Education division and cultural ambassadors spoke passionately about what this show of respect means for the many Native students within the school district. It allows a more diverse student body to feel accepted and be openly proud of their culture.

After tribal members and school administrators lent historical perspective and words of encouragement for a brighter future to the large gatherings at each school flag pole, a coalition of Native representatives with drum-in-hand offered traditional canoe family songs. The sentiment being in order for both communities to in face move forward together and in a good way, they’d have to pull in synch and in the same direction, like a canoe family. 

The final stop on the multi-day mission to raise the Tulalip flag across all Marysville School District campuses was Tulalip’s own Early Learning Academy. The expectation being that for these young ones, they grow up in a school district only knowing what it’s like to be accepted and embraced for their cultural traditions and teachings. A special moment occurred when the group prepared to sing their canoe songs. 

“A staff member brought her grandson to me and asked if he could drum with us,” said Matt Remle. “Made my heart feel good. That’s why we do what do for the next generation. So they can grow up in a better society, not invisible but instead empowered and uplifted. Knowing they’re sovereign, knowing that they can be themselves no matter where they are.”

By adding the Tulalip flag to the same pole that holds the United States and Washington State flags, Marysville School District recognizes Tulalip’s inherent sovereignty as an indigenous nation and acknowledges that the best way forward is in partnership, pulling together.

Thanksgiving’s origin, and the opportunities Native Americans have to reclaim our culture

By Shaelyn Hood, Tulalip News

This year marks the 400th anniversary of the “first” Thanksgiving. Traditionally, the American education system has taught this holiday as a time where Native Americans and pilgrims worked together, helped each other, and celebrated with a feast in 1621. However, with a better understanding, we know that there is more than meets the eye.

The truth behind the “first” Thanksgiving makes some wonder whether to celebrate it. According to the National Parks Service, as early as 1565, Spanish settlers and members of the Seloy tribe broke bread in Florida. Then according to National Geographic, in 1619, the first thanksgiving-like gathering took place when settlers in Berkeley Hundred (now Virginia) celebrated their arrival in 1619. Others like to argue that the origin comes from 1637 when the Massachusetts Bay Colony governor, John Winthrop, declared a day to celebrate soldiers who had just slaughtered hundreds of Pequot men, women, and children.

Nonetheless, we know that the traditional story that is told of the “first” Thanksgiving is not completely true. A study published by Quarternary Science Reviews say that by 1620, about 90% of the Indigenous people were already lost to a disease brought over by European settlers. And not shortly after, any relationship that the Wampanoag people at Plymouth Rock had with European settlers, quickly dissipated. 

Today in America, many families don’t gather because of Thanksgiving’s history, but rather, they use the day as another opportunity to gather with loved ones. Thanksgiving has become less about the dynamics between pilgrims and Native Americans, and more about families being together. 

 For many Native Americans, that same idea applies, but also carrying on traditions through generations. Tulalip elder Dale Jones said, “We’ve got to get to the importance of it. If Covid taught us anything, it is really important to gather together as a family, before our elders are gone.” 

 In today’s world, Native Americans can gather, carry on and teach traditions that our ancestors fought so hard to keep. We have more capabilities now to be active in our culture and educate our community. Ultimately, we can change the narrative of what Thanksgiving once was and reclaim our language, ceremony, and foodways back to our heritage, and incorporate Native traditional foods into our holiday meals. Veronica “Roni” Leahy with the Diabetes Program listed some traditional and healthy food recipes that tribal members can include this Thursday. 

  • Veggie salad- Any kind of squash, tomato, dried shelling beans, and corn, sauteed together with chives
  • Pompion- Mash together pumpkin, or any type of squash, ginger, salt, and butter
  • Native American meatloaf- Elk or deer, wild onions, and camas or other native plants
  • Berry compote topping- any wild berries, boil, mash, and mix with honey

Roni went on to talk about the importance of prayer, “In Indian Country, it’s always best to receive every day as a gift. Our elders teach us that all good things begin with prayer and end with prayer.”

She also shared an East Coast Wampanoag prayer by Michael “Tender Heart” Markley,

“Let us give thanks to the creator for all that he gives. The harvest moon has shined its brilliance over our home and now as we store the harvest of our work the creator gives his sustenance. The Earth will now rest through the coming seasons storing the energy needed to once again feed our people.”

As David Weeden, Mashpee Wampanoag tribal historic preservation officer once said, “Acknowledging that wrongs have been done is the first part of healing.” As Native Americans, we have the opportunity to understand our history, but also to share our truth, and take actions to continue to reclaim our culture and move forward as a community. 

25th Anniversary (plus one) of the Evergreen State longhouse

Vickie Era-Pancretz (Alutiiq) AWIRNAQ – Alutiiq Hunting Hat.
Spruce root, sea otter fur, dentalium, antique Russian trade beads, imitation sea lion whiskers,
suet, cloth straps
“AWIRNAQ represents my hunt for my roots, which started as a student of Native American Studies in 1994. Through the Longhouse community, I connected with and studied under many Northwest Master Basket Weavers and participated in Pacific Art Northwest 1997 – 1999, winning two awards. 
As a member of the Northwest Native Basketweavers Association, I first connected with an Alutiiq grass basket weaver. In early 2010, I traveled to St. Petersburg, Russia with the director of the Alutiiq Museum, plus four other Alutiiq weavers and one Tlingit weaver. We studied collections of hundreds of Alutiiq weavings from the Koniag region, including many spruce root hunting hats. These were highly decorated and some brightly painted to express hunting prowess. 
After several years, I was able to collect and process enough spruce root to weave this hat—similar to one that is in the Smithsonian Museum. Fellow Alutiiq artist, Jerry Laktonen, honored me with his painted whale design. This has been a meaningful journey of connection for me and I would be honored to have AWIRNAQ on exhibit where my journey began. I am grateful to our Creator for guiding my hands and heart, and for bringing me to the Longhouse.”

By Micheal Rios, Tulalip News

Native artists are luminaries of their shared cultures, lighting the pathway back into the far reaches of history, and leading the way into the future with their creative vision. In continuing our celebration of November as Native American Heritage Month, we offer our readers a stunning collection of artwork offered by such luminaries. These examples of fine Native craftsmanship were curated by the devoted longhouse team at Evergreen State College.

The “House of Welcome” longhouse education and cultural center is a public service center on the college’s Olympia campus. Built in collaboration with Northwest Tribes, it is the first building of its kind on a public campus in the United States. It was a dream of Native students, tribal artists and faculty member Mary Ellen Hillaire (Lummi Nation), who founded Evergreen’s Native American Studies program in 1972. 

Kelly Church (Grand Traverse Bay of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians) Fiberge Egg #9
Black ash, black ash seed, Rit Dye, sweet grass, copper, velvet, sinew
“The Emerald Ash Borer was discovered in 2002 in Michigan in the eastern side of the state. At that time thousands of ash trees had died. It is called the Emerald Ash Borer because it is a beautiful emerald green color with a copper colored belly. This basket represents the Emerald Ash Borer, with its green and copper colors, and opens to a vial containing the Emerald Ash Borer and a black ash seed;
The End and the Beginning. 
The black ash tree is the last to get its leaves in the summer, and the first to lose the leaves usually.
The seeds take 2 years to germinate. They drop to the ground in the fall time, go through a winter, spring, summer, and the next summer it begins to grow. It grows in the swamps and wetlands and provides food
for our white tail deer. 
The tree provides the community with splints for baskets that provide utilitarian baskets such as baby baskets, fishing creels, ceremonial baskets and more, as well as the finances for food, shelter, and future harvests to do it all again. It provides communities with teachings that bring together families, weavers, and future generations to carry these teachings on into the next generation.  While it seems like the end is inevitable, I also see this as a new beginning. A new resurgence, an urgency, a recognition, the awakening of blood memory. Our people are strong and with good hearts, they are learning, they are weaving, they are hearing the voices of their ancestors, and they are listening.”

In 1995 their dream came true thanks to the perseverance of Evergreen graduate Colleen Jollie and since that time, the mission of Evergreen’s “House of Welcome,” has been to promote Indigenous arts and cultures from not only the Pacific Northwest, but nationally.  

Since opening, the Longhouse has awarded over $800,000 in individual artist grants; it has hosted over 200 artists residencies and workshops; it has premiered 15 art exhibitions; sent six Northwest Native American artists to New Zealand for artist residencies; and hosted two international artists gatherings featuring Indigenous artists from around the Pacific Rim.  

Chholing Taha (Cree First Nations) We Are One Bond
Acrylic on plywood
“This collaborative piece was designed as one of twelve puzzle pieces adorned with traditional stories by both North and South American Indigenous artists. This work discusses many aspects of the interconnectedness of all life. The home fire (society), the stars (sweat lodge elements), tipi poles (each has teachings on how to behave as a thinking human being), rock around the tipi bottom (a woman’s skirt, modesty), the rope binding the tipi poles (We Hold Our Life Together), and the lovely plants that provide medicine and food for all.”

This past summer, Kara Briggs (Sauk-Suiattle) was appointed as Vice President for Tribal Relations, Arts and Cultures. Briggs is determined to continue Evergreen’s 50 years of success as an institution that serves Native students, helping them to which has pave the way to successful careers in their own Tribes, as well as in government, arts and sciences.  

Alex Swiftwater McCarty (Makah)
Friendship Mask. Red cedar, red cedar bark
“Along with the print Pacific Connection, this piece is influenced by my collaborative work with master carver Lyonel Grant during the summer of 2015. We had the opportunity to make monumental carvings for the new Evergreen Fiber Arts Studio that truly blends Northwest Native and Māori design
elements and motifs. 
`As an artist, I work with both contemporary and traditional mediums, and I am always fascinated with translating three-dimensional carved elements into two-dimensional printed images. I first carved the Friendship Mask out of old-growth red cedar and adorned it with cedar bark for hair. This mask represents the new connections made between Pacific Indigenous nations and peoples.”

“The Evergreen Longhouse is a nationally important center for Northwest Native arts and model for other state and private colleges in how to work with Tribes and Native artists to advance Native cultural and artistic expression,” Briggs said. “As The Evergreen State College looks to the next 50 years, and the Longhouse to the next 25 years, we must continue to grow our relationships with Tribes and Native artists, so that we are always creating pathways for Northwest Native peoples to advance.”  

2021 marks the 25th Anniversary (plus one) of Evergreen’s longhouse. The faculty and support staff who embody the heart of the longhouse enjoy convening groups of artists, providing a venue, forum and tools that are needed for artists to express their creativity.

A retrospective art exhibition opening on November 20th, featuring Indigenous artists from throughout the Pacific Rim who have contributed and participated in the work of the longhouse for the past 25 years. The exhibit is free to the general public and can be seen in Evergreen’s gallery located in the Daniel J. Evans building on the college’s Olympia campus. It runs through January 29, 2022.  

“This was one of the most successful Bazaars yet!”

Monie Ordonia.

By Shaelyn Hood, Tulalip News

Makyna Lancaster and Domonick Fuga.

Following last year’s Covid-19 cancellation of the Native Bazaar, many people were eager to see what this year’s Bazaar had to show. Many artists used the event as a time to hone in on their craft and create beautiful pieces for the sale. With over 49 vendors signed up, volunteer organizer, Tammy Taylor, knew this year was going to bring a lot of surprises.

The Bazaar started on Friday November 12 and continued through Sunday November 14. Vendors had a variety of items from, cedar hats/headbands, quilts, acrylic paintings, beaded jewelry, Christmas ornaments, knitted hats, smoked salmon, handmade drums and rattles, and much more. The event drew in such a large crowd that some vendors had sold out by Friday and Saturday. In their attempts to continue selling, vendors went as far as making new pieces overnight to bring the next day. 

Monie Ordonia, a painter and vendor at the event, talked about her experience, “Everyone must have really missed this, we’ve had a lot of foot traffic. It makes me happy to get people excited about art; when they get into the wondering ‘awe’ state, where they want to take it home with them. I take that feeling with me.” 

As we all know, COVID-19 caused a lot of disruptions for gatherings and the Native Bazaar became one of the first major events where the community could come together again. And for many, that was the most important thing.

Tammy Yelm.

 “I usually travel with my family to different elders’ luncheons, it’s nice to be able to come back here and be with the community,” said vendor, Tammy Yelm 

For another vendor, Lisa James-Rodriguez, this was her first year at the Native Bazaar, “I’ve been crafting for six years; art has really become my therapy. During quarantine, it helped keep my sanity, I got to explore new crafts and styles, and the art just speaks to me. Art is a feeling.” 

Lisa James-Rodriguez and Mary Jo James.

Art can be such a fun and emotional process for a lot of artists, and in many ways, they are exposing themselves. The Tulalip community really came together and showed their support for the event and for these artists. Tammy Taylor was extremely happy, “This was one of the most successful Native Bazaars yet! We were all surprised at the turnout. Thank you to the Tulalip Community for coming out and supporting your local Tulalip artists.” 

 She also gave a shout out to the maintenance team, “Barry Davis, Don and their group, they helped set up everything in two hours. Every year they are so gracious and help with cleaning up and supporting our events. They help everything run so smoothly.” 

Tammy Taylor (right).

The Native Bazaar will be taking place one last time before the end of the year, December 3-5 from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the Don Hatch Jr. Youth Center. The same vendors will be attending, but expect new things! 

Unfortunately, at this time, the space is filled and cannot take anymore new vendors. If you would like to join the waitlist, or have any questions about the upcoming Bazaar, please contact Tammy Taylor at: 425-501-4141

MSD adopts very first Equity Plan

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News  

“When I was growing up we did not see ourselves in school,” expressed Quil Ceda Tulalip Elementary Vice-Principal and Tulalip tribal member, Chelsea Craig. “We did not see our people, our way of being. We were expected to check who we were at the door of the school and conform to the colonized system that we were forced to participate in. This policy is the beginning stages of changing that practice. It honors the unique and beautiful communities that each of our students come from. It puts the heavy lifting on the adults to change their practice and their thinking to meet the needs of all of our kids. It interrupts the status quo, that has long-standing shown, does not work for our Native students and other students of color.”

For the first time in history, the Marysville School District (MSD) has adopted an equity policy in an effort to ensure that their students, faculty and families feel safe and supported through their academic careers and time spent within the school district. November 3 marked an important and historic day, as the district took the first step in a long journey. A journey worth striving for where kids can thrive in a comfortable learning environment and simply be themselves without worrying about bullying, harassment, or experiencing educational disparities and barriers based on their culture, ethnicity, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status. 

Said Eneille Nelson, MSD Executive Director of Equity and Family Engagement, “This educational equity policy was created by students, parents, community members and staff. It was very important to have the right people at the table thinking about the needs of our students, families and staff of our district. It will serve as the foundation to initiate the necessary sustainable changes for years to come. The policy is just the beginning of the work we have to do, a foundation for us to build upon.”

Over numerous pages, the policy identifies five key areas that MSD will focus on to implement the Equity Action Plan; Human Resources, Teaching and Learning, Leadership and Partnership, Climate and Culture, and Responsibility/Accountability. 

If executed as planned, the district will recruit and hire a more diverse workforce, whom students can identify with, relate to and confide in. Eliminate systemic inequalities in curriculums and educational materials by providing their staff with professional development training and tailoring lessons so their students can see themselves within the curriculum. Build and foster strong relationships with their students, families and local communities, namely the Tulalip Tribes, City of Marysville and Snohomish County, to ensure they have input in major decisions and that their voice is heard and well-represented. Offer a safe and inclusive learning environment where the proper resources are readily available to their students. And hold staff, the school board and the yet-to-be-appointed superintendent accountable by closely monitoring the progress of the policy through annual reports, reviews and surveys – to name a few highlights from the newly established policy.  

“The Marysville School District has never had an equity policy before and we have seen the painful effects on our kids and our community,” stated Liz Gobin, MSD teacher and Tulalip tribal spouse and parent. “Having a comprehensive equity policy holds everyone in the district accountable to ensure that our kids feel safe and that the biases that have existed in the larger community and educational systems will no longer be tolerated.  There have been many feel-good statements about equity over the years but having a formal policy adopted means that there is finally action happening. Along with this initial policy, the advisory teams are continuing to develop the action steps that go along with it, including things like professional development to educate staff, more diverse hiring practices, evaluating discipline data, and holding every person accountable to interrupt racism and biases as they occur.”

She continued, “This Equity policy was created for and belongs to each of our children. I want to encourage every family to use their voice to make sure we keep building on this policy and that we never go backward. As our school board changes and our superintendent search begins, it’s important to remember that what we demand as parents and as a community makes a difference. We need to pay close attention to what is happening and work together to make sure this policy stays at the forefront of all of the work happening in the district.” 

As Liz mentioned, MSD is currently undergoing several changes as the school board welcomes three new directors to the five-seat panel, two of whom have shown opposition to curriculum such as Critical Race Theory and have vocalized they would not support any curriculum that places value on any race, gender or national origin above another. That is why she is urging other parents to get involved as the new policy goes into effect, to ensure that the equity policy is implemented as planned and the needs of MSD students and families hailing from various backgrounds are met. And that their students are also afforded a safe and positive learning environment, as well as celebrated for their differences. 

Chelsea shared, “At QCT we have been working for many years to change the mindset of school, grounded in the traditional values of the Tulalip Tribes. We have been working to build our understanding of race and equity and the role each of us play in creating a learning environment that reflects the community we serve, that honors the beauty that each of our children bring into a very colonized space. MSD passing this policy grounds the much-needed work to heal our Tulalip/Marysville community.” 

Eneille added, “Our next steps will be to create an action plan that will put actions to the areas addressed in our policy. Everyone in our district and community have a part to play in the success of our policy and action plan. We all have to hold each other accountable and not expect one person or group to do all of the heavy lifting. If we work together, this policy and action plan can bring the change many have been waiting and hoping for.”

To view the MSD Eduction Equity Policy please visit: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1yb3sRKRNQOil-Afud66Qxq9HXqW27zQu/view

The district’s current Equity Action Plan can be found at:  https://core-docs.s3.amazonaws.com/documents/asset/uploaded_file/1312201/MSD_Equity_Action_Plan_Web_Version.pdf

For additional information, please contact the Marysville School District at (360) 965-0000.