Aleut Culture Camp
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Aleut Culture Camp, Cold Bay, 2006

Students of Cold Bay outside their school flanked on the right by principal teacher, Kurt Schmidt and at the far left, Mike Livingston, Culture Camp instructor.

The 2006 Aleut Culture Camp for the Aleutians East Borough School District was hosted by the Cold Bay School during the week of March 13 - March 17. In addition to the students from Cold Bay, students, teachers and chaperones from the villages of Akutan, False Pass and Nelson Lagoon attended.

The purpose of culture camp is to immerse the students in various Aleut cultural activities, including in this case, drum making, beading, Aleut bent wood hat making, kayak building, story telling and Aleut language (Unangam Tunuu) exposure.

On day 1 students arrived from the other villages and assembled in the class room to get to know each other. Students then split up three groups to take turns at the various activities.

On day 2, the real fun began and we set to making drums, hats, boats and beadwork.

On day 3, Wednesday, we had generated enough wood scrap from hatmaking and boat building to have a bonfire.

On day 4, Thursday night, the students organized a dance. The dance was lit by blacklight. No pictures available.

During breaks, students participated in various native youth olympics activities such as hanging by your wrist. The goal here is to hang as long as possible.

On day 5, Friday, the students packed their belongings. Some crafts were done in the morning. In the afternoon people flew back to their home villages.

On day 6, Candace, one of the Cold Bay students joined us and modeled some of the Aleut gear we had managed to construct during culture camp. Mike Livingston supplied a simulated gutsking parka and a fur seal skin for the photo session.

Mike Livingston poses Candace outside Cold Bay School.

Kurt getting a closeup of Candace with the boat.

And then we packed up the boat and the gear and headed down to the beach for more pictures.

All content copyright © 2006 Wolfgang Brinck. Personal non-commercial use permitted.