Native Village 

Youth and Education News

February 1, 2007 Issue 175  Volume 4

"There are bad and foolish people in every race. You have to judge them one by one, and then you have to give them a second chance."  Imogene Bowen, Upper Skagit Tribe

U of I Says Chief Illiniwek Feathers Returned; Tribe Disagrees
Illinois:  This year, the University of Illinois will decide if Chief Illiniwek will remain or be replaced as the school's mascot.  But another mystery is involved:  what became of the four eagle feathers on the mascot's headdress?  The Oglala Sioux is demanding that UI return the mascot's costume, which was sold to the school by the late Sioux elder, Frank Fools Crow.  UI Assistant Chancellor, Robin Kaler, said the headdress and eagle feathers was shipped in 1991 to tribal member Anthony Whirlwind Horse, who agreed to get them to a descendant of Fools Crow.  However, neither the Sioux nor UI know if the regalia was actually returned and where it is today.
Learn More: Sioux to Illini: Return Regalia"
H-Amindian Listserve

College Prank May Have Damaged Ancient Tempe Petroglyphs
Arizona: A college prank has damaged ancient American Indian petroglyphs on a butte overlooking Arizona State University's Tempe campus.  Vandals climbed Tempe butte and painted a large red "A"  on the rocks before the annual football game with ASU's rival, the University of Arizona. That red paint could have erased rock art dating back to 1250. Now the city may be forced to spend thousands of dollars for a petroglyph expert to examine the damage and help remove the paint. "There is art up there made by the Hohokam, who, of course, are no longer here," said Amy Douglass, from the Tempe Historical Museum. "Once they are gone, there is no way to get them back. They are a window into our past. They are irreplaceable."
H-Amindian Listserve

Haskell Athletics to host athlete recruiting day
Kansas: On February 9, 2007, the Haskell Indian Nations University will host its annual Native American athlete recruiting day. Prospective student-athletes and their parents can meet with head coaches from men's football, golf and softball, women's volleyball, and men's and women's basketball and cross country/track. They will also tour Haskell's campus and learn more about admissions, financial aid, housing and eligibility. "This event is open to all Native American athletes who are interested in playing sports on the collegiate level, or current college athletes looking at other opportunities"  said Haskell's Athletic Director, Dwight M. Pickering . "All head coaches will be available for questions, and we welcome everyone to come and find out more information about our university and it's athletic programs."
To register:

Going for the Gold
Manitoba: A group of young female hockey stars are training for the 2007 National Aboriginal Hockey Championships in Prince Albert, Saskatoon. This is the third year of head coaching for Peter Symchuk, who led last year's team to a bronze medal at the National Championships in Montreal.  “It was very satisfying. We weren’t expected to even win a medal," said Symchuk.  "One of the players from Team Ontario said ‘where did Team Manitoba come from?’  We surprised them that much.”  The Manitoba team has been around since 2000 and has been gaining more fanfare and media attention each year. The team's 21 players are recruited from across Manitoba. This year's National Aboriginal Hockey Championships will be held from April 29-May 5.   The team's goal is to bring home a gold medal.

Uncovering Sacred Lessons
Arizona: Bennie Begay is a 37-year-old teacher at Rock Point High School, who says some Navajos don't know the stories --"they've only heard" about them.  So he puts together a week-long lesson about the shoe game in an effort to preserve the storytelling tradition. "The good thing about it is they go home and teach their loved ones," Begay said. According to Navajo lore, a wintertime dispute between daytime and nighttime animals ended after a game was played to decide if humans would live in darkness or in light.  The game doesn't teach the cycle of the universe; instead, it teachers lessons about cheating and trusting one's instincts. The game even includes songs which are sung to distract players.  The first frost of the year marks the season for the shoe game. The season ends "when you hear thunder..." said Eddie Clark, 64. "You can't play anymore until you have snow on the ground again." 

How to play
Using 102 yucca stems to keep score, the animals played the shoe game from sunset until sunrise.
Each team took turns hiding the yucca ball in one of four shoes, holding up a blanket to keep their choice a secret.
Once the blanket dropped, an animal from the other team took a cedar stick and walked over to find the ball.
Four, six or 10 yucca stems are awarded until one team has all 102 yucca stems.
Everything about the game is tied to Navajo beliefs. For instance, the yucca plant is used in traditional ceremonies to cleanse the hair, cedar is used for protection and, according to the tribe's deities, the life span of a Navajo is 102 years.

Blanket brings "sacred change"
Washington:  With prayer and song, area tribal members recently blessed a hand-twined mountain-goat-hair blanket. "A blanket like this made from mountain-goat hair probably has not been made in 100 years," said Barbara Brotherton, curator of Native American Art at the Seattle Art Museum. This weaving art was retained by a few master weavers, including the late Bruce Miller, who passed the art on to Susan Pavel.  Susan's husband, Michael, spent 12 years gathering the wool -- tuft by tuft -- for the blanket, and Susan spent six months weaving it.   The blanket debuted in a joyous ceremony in the longhouse at  Evergreen State College.  It was wrapped around honored elders, one at a time, amid song and prayer. "I feel like I'm in heaven," said Fran James, 83, a Lummi master weaver and elder honored with wearing the thick, soft blanket. At about 15 pounds, the blanket was so heavy she and other elders wore it seated.  "It has so much energy, you could feel it has so much meaning," James said.  The blanket, whose Indian name means Sacred Change for Each Other, is as much a mission as a name, said Delbert Miller, a Skokomish spiritual leader. "It is a sacred change for everyone, from a people that nearly lost everything, to a people that is coming together."   The blanket be hung in the Seattle Art Museum. It will .
"Miracle" brought to young lives
Wyoming: It was 2004 when playwright Bernie Strand first heard about the 1994 birth of Miracle, the Sacred White Buffalo.  A couple years later, she finished writing a new play called "Miracle in Janesville." The one-act play captures how the real people involved might have described the events and emotions to a reporter.  Recently, Strand handed the play to the Casper Children's Theater where youth have been auditioning for the parts.  Co-director Becky Morris is excited about Miracle's message and this show. "This is more than just fairy tale," Morris said.  Actress Dawn Anderson agreed.  She is part American Indian and remembers the events in Strand's play."My whole family was in an uproar," she said, adding that they followed Miracle's life as much as possible in newspapers and online.  "This is a great script with a great story with a lot of personal meaning behind it."  Performances of "Miracle in Janesville" had been set for January, 2007. Due to casting needs, the play is now set to run in June or July, 2007.  "Miracle in Janesville," won the 2006 ARTCORE playwriting competition.

Grammy Nominations.
The following albums have been nominated for a Grammy.  The albums were released between October 1, 2005 through September 30, 2006

Best Native American Music Album
(Vocal or Instrumental)
Best Hawaiian Music Album
(Vocal or Instrumental)
Voice Of The Drum
Black Eagle

Heart Of The Wind
Robert Tree Cody & Will Clipman
[Canyon Records]

American Indian Story

Long Winter Nights
Northern Cree & Friends
[Canyon Records]

Dance With The Wind
Mary Youngblood
[Silver Wave Records]

Generation Hawai'i
Amy Hanaiali'i
[Hanaiali'i Records]

Grandmaster Slack Key Guitar
Ledward Ka'apana
[Rhythm And Roots Records]

The Wild Hawaiian
Henry Kapono
[Eclectic Records]

Hawaiian Slack Key Kings
Various Artists
Chris Lau & Milton Lau, producers
[Rhythm And Roots Records]

Legends Of Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar - Live From Maui
Various Artists
Daniel Ho, George Kahumoku, Jr., Paul Konwiser & Wayne Wong, producers
[Daniel Ho Creations]

The 49th Annual GRAMMY Awards will be held on "GRAMMY Sunday," Feb. 11, 2007, at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles

Rules for the Stick game
The Stick Game is often played at powwows and is open to anyone who wants to play. Basically, the game is played in this way: 
Bones: The game uses four equally sized cylinders called "Bones" that can be held in the palm of each hand of two players.
Two bones will be marked with a colored dot or band. Two will be unmarked. 

Sticks: A set of 11 colored sticks represents the two teams.  Each team has five sticks painted in different color schemes.
An extra stick,  known as the "Kick Stick,"  is usually larger and elaborately decorated.

Set up:
The game is started by team "pointers"  who each takes a set of marked and unmarked bones, then shifts the bones from hand to hand while hiding both hands behind a drum or scarf.  When ready, the pointers holds out their hands with a bone hidden each hand. The pointers then try to guess where the opponent's unmarked bone is. The winning pointer takes the ten sticks, while the opposing team chooses the color to represent their team.
The Game: 
While others drum and sing, the winning pointer gives the marked and unmarked bone to two different teammates. These players then hide the bones behind an object while switching the bones from hand to hand.  When ready, the players place their hands across their chest with the bones hidden in the palm of their hands.  The opposing team's pointer must then choose which hands hold the marked and unmarked bones.  If the pointer guesses correctly on one set, then  the other team gives him one of their sticks.  When the pointer fails to guess the correct bone,  she/he must throw one of his sticks over to the opposing team.  The team that finishes with all of the sticks wins the game. A game can last mere minutes or even hours.
The Stick Game songs are believed to have mythological powers and were passed down through many  generations.  Songs were used to taunt and instill fear in the other team.  If a group sang its songs and won the game, they believed they had more power than the opposing group.   The drums, which keep to the rhythm of the song or game, is a recent addition to the Stick Game.
For photos and more detailed rules, visit:

Organization to promote Professional Native fighters
Beginning in January, the North American Boxing Federation will create a Native American Boxing Council for professional Native fighters from Canada, the United States and Mexico. The NABC will rank the ten top professional Native American fighters in each of the 17 weight divisions, then establish a champion in each division. ”It is the hope of the NABC to provide Native American boxers a positive outlet to further their careers, promote tribal culture, and take pride in the recognition of their championships,” said Gerald Wofford, President of the NABC.  Eligible fighters must be members of a federally recognized tribe and meet the governing rules set by the NABC.


 Volume 3 

 Native Village Home Page

Native Village is published with the generous help and support of friends, listserves, and online publications. Without you, Native Village would not exist.  Megwich to you all.

To join our mailing list and receive news update reminders, send email address to:
To contact Native Village staff, email:

Native Village Linking Policy
Our research, study and resource collections cover a lot of Internet territory! We do our best to screen all links and select only those we designate "kidsafe" and appropriate. However, Native Village does not control the content found on third-party sites, so we are not always aware when content changes. If you discover a link that contains inappropriate information, please contact us immediately.  In addition, please be aware that each linked site maintains its own independent data collection, policies and procedures. If you visit a Web site linked from Native Village, you should consult that site's privacy policy before providing it with any personal information.
For more information about keeping kids safe online, please read about the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA).In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107, this material is distributed without profit or payment for non-profit research, archival, news, and educational purposes only.

Native Village © Gina Boltz

All rights reserved