© 2009  Vermont Indigenous Celebration
Vermont Indigenous Celebration
July 9-12,2009
Burlington, Vt.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact
Vera Longtoe Sheehan
(802) 579-0049
vlongtoe@vtindigenous.com
www.vtindigenous.com

Celebrating 11,000 years of Cultural Endurance

Burlington, VT, June 23, 2009— Join the Abenaki people of Vermont for
a four-day celebration of history, culture and survival.  July 9-12, we will
be sharing our history, culture and arts at one of the premiere signature
events of the Vermont Quadricentennial Celebration.  ECHO Lake
Aquarium and Science Center/Leahy Center for Lake Champlain in
Burlington makes the perfect backdrop for this celebration because many
of our ancestors lived and died alongside of Bitawbagw (Abenaki for “The
Lake in Between”), known today as Lake Champlain.  Indigenous
Celebration made possible by a grant from the US Department of
Education through the support of US Senator, Patrick Leahy.

The Native American Quadricentennial Advisory Panel (NAQUAD) has
been working with Vermont Quadricentennial Commission and state
officials in planning the Vermont Indigenous Celebration Signature Event
since 2004. According to Dr. Frederick Wiseman, Tribal Historian and
Quadricentennial Commission member, this event, “…is our way of
showcasing the fact that Vermont has and has always had a vibrant
Native American community.” The Vermont Indigenous Celebration will
feature presentations by citizens of the following Abenaki bands -
Missisquoi, Koasek of the Koas, Nulhegan Band of Abenakis, the Elnu
Abenaki Tribe of the Koasek and the Koasek Traditional Band.

Enjoy sharing in our past and present through lectures on history and
culture and films spanning the whole 11,000 years of the Vermont
Abenaki experience. You will have the opportunity to listen to traditional
stories, as told by Chief Roger Longtoe Sheehan and Laughing Couple
Interactive Storytelling. Our dance circle will be brought to life by award
winning Abenaki dancers, Takara Matthews and Josh Hunt. Don’t forget
to stop by ECHO’s Think! Café for a traditional Abenaki meal.

Stimulate all of yours senses as you walk through a seventeenth century
Abenaki Encampment, provided by the citizens of the Elnu Abenaki Tribe
of the Koasek. Talk to artists as they demonstrate Eastern Woodland
style crafts. Some of the featured artists will be quillworkers Rose Hartwell
and Jim Taylor; fiber artist Vera Longtoe Sheehan; wampum worker
Linda Longtoe Sheehan; as well as finger weavers Kathy Swift and
Melody Walker.

There will be guest appearances by out Mohawk cousins from the other
side of Bitawbagw. On July 10th, Thunder Hawk Dancers will fire up the
dance circle and on July 12th, Darren Bonnepart will do a Mohawk
Wampum Reading.

“We hope that the visitors to Vermont’s waterfront will in early July of
2009 will come away with a newfound understanding and respect for the
original people of what is now called Vermont,” explains Dr. Wiseman.

For more information: http://www.vtindigenous.com
Contact: vlongtoe@vtindigenous.com
Phone: (802) 579 0049
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