News & Notes

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The Annual Wyandotte Nation Children’s Christmas Party will be held Saturday, December 10th in the Bearskin Healthcare and Wellness Center gym. The doors will open at 9:45 and Santa will arrive at 10:00 a.m. Enrolled Wyandotte Nation children ages birth to 12 will receive a gift from Santa and other goodies. Parents and family are welcome to join the festivities and enjoy punch and cookies. If you have questions please contact the Family Services staff at 918-678-6329 or 918-678-6355.

Wyandotte Nation opens doors to new

Cultural Center

Wyandotte Nation Chief Billy Friend addresses a packed house at the Grand Opening of the new Cultural Center across from Bearskin Healthcare & Wellness Center in Wyandotte. (Photo by William Swaim)

Wyandotte Nation Chief Billy Friend addresses a packed house at the Grand Opening of the new Cultural Center across from Bearskin Healthcare & Wellness Center in Wyandotte. (Photo by William Swaim)

By William Swaim, Wyandotte Nation

The Wyandotte Nation took a monumental step forward in preserving its past for future generations with the construction and opening of its new Cultural Center Friday, Sept. 9.

“We know this is something that is not only going to benefit our generation, but generations to come,” Wyandotte Nation Chief Billy Friend said to a packed house at the Center’s grand opening ceremony. “We as Wyandotte people, because of our forced removal and our trail here, like many other tribes we lost a lot of our culture, our traditions and our ceremonies. They were not dead, but had laid dormant for many years.

“Many of us grew up not knowing what it meant to be Wyandotte. So many of us did not have the benefit that our children and our grandchildren are going to have today – learning what it is to be Wyandotte and knowing what that actually means, knowing their identity, knowing where they came from, knowing their family, and knowing their ancestors.”

The 7,625-square foot Cultural Center features a museum, classrooms, a multipurpose room, gift shop, and the Tribal Heritage Department offices. The facility will also feature an eternal flame, representing the Tribe’s historic role as Keepers of the Council Fire.

(Photo by William Swaim)

(Photo by William Swaim)

The Cultural Center will play host to language and arts and crafts classes as well as be the site of the Tribe’s annual ‘The Gathering,’ which is an opportunity for tribal citizens to connect and learn more about their culture, traditions, language and history. The Center will also safely house tribal artifacts for the Wyandotte Nation in preserving the Tribe’s past.

“As the vision began to come forth and the Creator placed the vision in us to begin to plan and to go forward, this was something we always wanted,” Chief Friend said. “We wanted a place that we could bring our children, we could bring our grandchildren, and teach them our traditions, our customs, teach them our language, so that in seven generations to come these things will still be taught. These things will still be carried forward. This is such a monumental day for us to be able to do this.”

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Chief Friend closed by thanking the Wyandotte Nation Cultural Committee and the many others who made the Center a reality.

The funding for the $1,687,000 project came from an Indian Community Development Block Grant (ICDBG) and from economic development provided by the Wyandotte Nation’s federally-chartered corporation, Wyandotte Tribe of Oklahoma (WTOK).

Thomas Boxley was the architect and Crossland Construction built the Cultural Center.

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27th Annual Pow-Wow

Wyandotte Nation Chief Billy Friend entering the arena Saturday evening during Grand Entry as the sun sets. (Photo by William Swaim)

Wyandotte Nation Chief Billy Friend entering the arena Saturday evening during Grand Entry as the sun sets. (Photo by William Swaim)

e nation tribal citizen Joshua Garcia competes in the Men's Grass contest Sunday. (Photo by William Swaim)

Wyandotte Nation tribal citizen Joshua Garcia competes in the Men’s Grass contest Sunday. (Photo by William Swaim)

Wyandotte Nation tribal citizen Sara Wright during an exhibition dance. (Photo by William Swaim)

Wyandotte Nation tribal citizen Sara Wright during an exhibition dance. (Photo by William Swaim)

Wyandotte Nation tribal citizen Caleb Garcia, a fancy dancer, at Saturday's Pow-Wow afternoon session. (Photo by William Swaim)

Wyandotte Nation tribal citizen Caleb Garcia, a fancy dancer, at Saturday’s Pow-Wow afternoon session. (Photo by William Swaim)

The Wyandotte Nation hosted its 27th Annual Pow-Wow Friday, Sept. 9 through Sunday, Sept. 11. and featured $35,000 in prize money for dancers. The event featured Head Singer the Sovo Family, the Head Man Dancer Michael Roberts, Head Lady Dancer Donnie Pewo, Head Gourd Dancer Walter Dye, Northern Drum Redland Singers, Arena Director Dude Blalock, Head Judge Jay Blalock, and Master of Ceremonies Steve Kinder as well as some of the top dancers.

To view more photos of the event with images from Friday, Saturday and Sunday sessions, visit the Wyandotte Nation Facebook page or click the links below:

Friday evening Pow-Wow

Saturday Pow-Wow

Sunday Pow-Wow

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Supplemental Health Benefit Renewed

The Supplemental Health Benefit (aka the Benny card) will be renewed once again for 2016.  January 1, 2016 each Wyandotte Nation adult citizen account will be reloaded with $1,000 and each family account with $2,000.  The definition of a family account is an adult enrolled Wyandotte Nation citizen with enrolled dependents under the age of 18.

If you have any questions regarding specific approved items or vendors please contact CoreSource directly at 800-990-9058 x42086.  If you have questions regarding eligibility you can contact the Wyandotte Nation Family Services Deptartment at 918-678-6319 or 918-678-6329.

 

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Indian Trust Settlement

The Garden City Group with the Indian Trust Settlement is seeking out tribal citizens who may be eligible members of this class action law suit.  Please check out this link to see if you or family members are listed.  This is only a list of those citizens of whom they don’t have good addresses.  It is not a complete list of those eligible.  www.indiantrust.com/index

If you received a letter from the Settlement asking for your Individual Indian Money (IIM) Account number, please contact the Office of the Special Trustee at 918-453-5714.

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Traditional Stories on iTunes

We are pleased to announce that some of our talented summer youth have been working hard to illustrate some of our traditional Wyandotte stories. Two of these stories are available now on iTunes. They are currently only available for Apple devices. We are in the process of making those available for android users. Will post when these are available. The book is entitled “Wyandotte Traditional Stories Vol. 1”.

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We’re on Facebook!

Stay up to date: Visit the Wyandotte Nation Facebook page. Click on the button below and ‘Like Us.’ There you will have the opportunity to connect with fellow Wyandottes, Wyandotte Nation staff, family and friends, as well as see all the latest news, photos and video from various tribe activities. FB

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benny

Wyandotte Nation Supplemental Healthcare Benefit

For questions about this program please contact Dana Butterfield at x6319 or Tara Gragg at x6355.

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