Culture Camp 2010

This year was our 11th annual Culture Camp.  We had a total of 83 students from grades kindergarten through twelfth grade.  There were 47 students in fifth through twelfth grade who attended Monday through Friday 9:00 A.M. - 5:00 P.M. of both weeks.  The other 36 students from grades kindergarten through fourth were split into two groups and each group attended for three hours a day Monday through Friday of both weeks.  This has been the biggest attendance since camp started back in 2000.

We also had evening classes for adults from 7:00 P.M. - 9:00 P.M. Monday through Friday of each week.  We had a toal of 37 adults attending various classes and completing different projects.

This year we had 10 instructors, a cook, and cook assistan, a janitor and the Camp Director on staff.  Also the QT Tribe donated time from their staff memebers to help with camp.  Lorna who works at A/PIA also volunteered her time at camp. 

Peter Devine the Aleut Bentwood Hat Instructor started his students on a total of 28 new hats with 18 completely finished this year and the rest to be completed next year.

Sally Swetzof the Regalia and Language teacher had 12 students that started new regalia this year. A total of 10 were completed this year and 3 were completed from last year with a total of 13 newly completed regalia this year. Sally also helped Mar Bourdakofsky teach language and Aleut nursery rhymes to the 36 K-4 students.

Shalene Jackson the instructor for the Bering Sea headdresses had 15 youth and adult students that started new headdresses this year with 9 completed and 2 from last year that were repaired and completed.

Mike Livingston the Bidarka Instructor started 35 miniature bidarkas with about 10 completed.  Also 2 new life-size bidarkas were started with 1 completed and the other to be finished next year.  Also had a total of 21 students who learned how to sea kayak this year.

Karis Jackson the Full Crown Headdress and Dance Instructor started 8 new Full Crown Headdresses this year with 5 completed and 3 to be finished next year.

Crystal Dushkin and Karis taught dance to 63 students this year.  They also made and taught a new Unangax song for Sand Point this year.  We had 4 different dance groups performing at the potluck/dance presentation this year. 

Merle Carlson taught different styles of beading this year to students and adults with about 40 completed pieces of jewelry and key rings.

Sharon Kay, the weaving instructor taught weaving to 18 students with a total of 5 completed baskets.  Sharon also donated a beautiful basket for the auction.

Lelani Hamik taught arts and crafts and was the classroom teacher for grades k-4.  She did a wonderful job.

Mary Bourdakofsky taught language and nursery rhymes to grades K-4.  She had to leave camp early do to an injury, so Sally helped complete those classes. 

Bree Murphy was the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Instructor.  She took the students tide pooling and hiking and taught them about local plants and what was edible from the beaches.  She also taught the youger children about seals and sea otters as we used both kinds of pelts at camp.  Along with Mike she chaperoned an overnight camping trip to sand dollar with 21 students and 3 other chaperones.

Jamal Berntsen was the head cook and Anne Morris was her assistant.  Jamal cooked breakfast and dinner for all the instructors and adult volunteers.  It averaged about 75 people for lunch each day.  They also prepared snacks for about 90 people twice a day.

This year we had 2 teachers from Fairbanks, who were with the Rose Rural Human Services program, come out to observe and participate in cultural activities during camp.

Camp was very full and produtive this year.  Peter Devine was able to get a seal and he and Sally showed the students how to butcher and put away the meat.  They were also taught how to prepare the seal fat for seal oil.

I woud like to thank all of the entities that donated to our camp.  We could not have such a wonderful Culture Camp each year without the community and all the different entities that help out.