CUTLER - Teaching the community about its history was the goal Saturday of the Native American Fall Festival at the Cutler Community Center.
"This is not only for those of Native American heritage, but for the community," said Larry Tabler, chairman of the Tutelo Nahyssan Tribal Nation. "We want every member of the community to know the heritage."
The event, which ran from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., included a program of lessons including jewelry making, Pow Wow etiquette, fan making, drumming and traditional dancing.
Photo by Jolene Craig
Tables of items display the Native American culture were available for study in the Cutler Community Center during the Native American Fall Festival on Saturday.
"We want to teach traditions and the culture of the Native Americans," Rolita Tabler, one of the organizers. "Over the years we have been asked to host a Pow Wow and there is an etiquette to that part of the culture and people need to know how to behave when we do have one."
During the program, the organization had tables set up with replicas and artifacts of items used by local Native Americans. These pieces are family heirlooms and other items collected from members' heritage. A video showing Pow Wows and why things are done during them played in the background.
Although the event was free, funds collected through the soup bean, chili and hot dog lunch as well as books on the Tutelo Nahyssan Tribal Nation went to support the community center.
Rolita Tabler said some of the money from Saturday's event will go towards the $5,000 cost of Native American dancers for the future Pow Wow.
"This is one of many fundraisers we are planning," she said.
Larry Tabler said events such as Saturday's are important to the heritage because they help the community understand what Native American culture really is.
"There are people now waking up to who they really are by learning their heritage," he said. "We are now reaching out to the younger generation so they will know who they are."