Native American Heritage Bazaar

Cami Jones, Native American Support PR

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The month of November is Native American Heritage Month. To honor this, the ACE Club hosted the 8th Annual Native American Bazaar at the Lake Shore Senior High School on Wednesday, November 9, 2016. The focus of the event was to show all aspects of the Native American culture by having different vendors around the gym.

The ACE Club displayed three of the most popular traditional foods: fry bread, strawberry juice, and corn soup. In the middle of the gym there were singers and dancers that performed various social songs. Dancers were in attendance in their full regalia. This includes a long dress with a skirt under and leggings for women, while men wear a ribbon shirt and a breech cloth, along with their headdresses.

There were also many hands on activities for everyone to try. Stations included mini-moccasin making, learning to bead, and carving soap to imitate antler carving. To grab the attention of others, there was a game called “Hoop and Javelin” that you could try.

The Cattaraugus Community Center was there to give information about the fitness center on the reservation. As students walked around the gymnasium there were many artifacts and items to look at and learn about that were provided from the Iroquois Museum. Rod Haring attended to display traditional wooden lacrosse sticks and help in the process of making one. Adrian John came in to present the different steps of making a water drum. Students and faculty that visited the Bazaar could try John’s techniques and learn hands-on how to make one. These water drums are used to lead social songs and are accompanied by horn rattles. The Seneca Language class and teacher provided a presentation about the issue in Standing Rock, North Dakota and had information about the pipeline and everything currently going on at the protest.

Also, during the week of November 14th through November 18th, ACE Club hosted a Heritage Month spirit week at the high school. Monday was “Wear Purple and White” to recognize the importance of wampum. Tuesday was “Rock Your Mocs” to wear your moccasins around school as part of National Rock Your Mocs day. Wednesday, “Wear a Clan Animal Shirt.” was done to acknowledge all right Seneca clans. These clans are wolf, bear, beaver, turtle, snipe, hawk, heron, and deer. Thursday was “Wear Tribal Print” and students were asked to bust out their best, brightest, and most detailed tribal and traditional prints. Lastly, Friday was “Wear Blue” to support #NoDAPL and Water is Life to stand with Standing Rock and educate students about the events going on in North Dakota and our nation.

Also, if interested, science and social studies teachers could have presented information on this and discussing the economic and social effects/outcomes of this event. ACE Club hopes that we helped others learn and understand the way of the Native American people and culture and come to enjoy it as much as we do.