Category Archives: Pit River Tribe

Pit River Casino donates $5000 to fund Kid Fit Program

On May 11, Pit River Casino General Manager Mike Avelar came to Tri Counties Community Network at the Intermountain Community Center to present a check for $5000 for the Kid Fit Program. The donation ensures that this year’s Kid Fit program will be fully funded.

Mike Avelar with staff and children at Tri CountiyCommunity Network

Avelar said, “We are always happy to do whatever we can to help the community, because without the community we would not be here.”

Shaylene Herndon is the Kid Fit project manager. The program has 7 goals:

  1. Decreasing the incidence of Childhood Obesity in our region
  2. Increasing the level of physical activity by local families
  3. Raising awareness of healthy lifestyle choices
  4. Increasing use of our local parks, facilities, and other community programs
  5. Broadening understanding of healthy food and snack choices
  6. Building a stronger community by gathering families together in a healthy proactive way, and
  7. Collaborating with already established community events.

Kid Fit will host five free fun-filled events this year for families of all socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds.

The opening activity will be “Funky Fitness Fun” at Bailey Park at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, June 13.

On June 20, Kid Fit will sponsor a Night Hike at 6 p.m. at Burney Falls State Park.

On June 29, Kid Fit will host a Family Track and Field Night as one of the opening events of this year’s Burney Basin Days.

Tuesday, July 11, will feature “Splish, Splash, and and Swim” at the Raymond H. Berry Community Pool beginning at 6 p.m.

The final Kid Fit event for 2017 will be the “Master Mud Run” on Tuesday July 18 at Bailey Park at 6 p.m.

Mud run 2016

Herndon says, “We expect that Kid Fit Summer 2017 will benefit 150 plus children and their parents and result in over 5000 hours of documented physical activity.”

Kid Fit began in 2006 to address the obesity epidemic that was threatening the health of children in our country. Since that time, thanks to increased public awareness and changes in the food supply and school lunches, obesity rates have declined.

Changes in technology have caused decreased physical activity for children and adults. Eight to eighteen year olds spend an average of 7 hours and 11 minutes engaged with electronic screen media. This is an increase of 2.5 hours in the last ten years.  As a result, children spend less time in traditional childhood activities and outdoor play.

According to Herndon, excessive screen time has been linked to increased psychological difficulties that include hyperactivity, emotional and conduct problems, difficulties with peers, and poor school performance.

Kid Fit is designed not only to increase physical activity but also to increase social connections. Research done by the Strengthening Families Program  has shown that social connections promote family health, child well-being, and optimal youth development.

For more information about the Kid Fit Program call Shaylene Herndon at 430-335-4600.

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Filed under Burney, Pit River Tribe, Tri-Counties Community Center, youth

Pit River Casino Egg Hunt delights

Hundreds of children took delight in gathering plastic eggs filled with candy on the grounds of Pit River Casino on a beautiful Saturday afternoon April 15. Beginning at noon, there were 4 separate hunts for age groups 0-3, 4-6, 7-9, and 10 and older.

Young lad in a field of eggs

 

Parents with toddlers on a hunt for eggs

 

Harvesting a cache of eggs

 

Ten year old and up are off and running

 

A stampede of 7 to 9 year olds

In addition to the egg hunts, there was also a delicious barbecue of hamburgers and hot dogs and drawings for cool prizes.

Signing up for the drawing

 

Cool prizes

Pit River Casino Manager Mike Avelar said, “We do this to give back to the community by getting everybody together and letting the kids have fun.”

Mike Avelar preparing kids for the egg hunt

Among the many families who enjoyed the event were the Meltons. Jakob Melton, age 6, collected 17 eggs.  He said the Easter Bunny came and left the eggs and then “just hopped off.”

The Melton family

Melisha Carpenter said she would like to have more eggs but she was very grateful to the Easter Bunny for the ones that she did find.

Melisha Laree Carpenter

Many thanks to Pit River Casino for a wonderful community event.

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Filed under Burney, Pit River Country Events, Pit River Tribe, youth

Shasta county indigenous leaders, and youth to share lessons from standing rock

Press release from Indigenous Peoples’ Day – Shasta County
Click on image to enlarge

Click on image to enlarge

Redding, Calif. – At the FREE “Standing Rock Comes Home” community forum, Shasta County indigenous leaders, educators and youth will discuss their experiences visiting the Standing Rock spiritual camp in North Dakota where indigenous people and supporters have resisted the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. They will also discuss “local DAPLs”, big projects such as the proposed raise of Shasta Dam and Medicine Lake geothermal plants that would damage or flood sacred sites and could risk further contamination of the state’s water supply.

The forum will be held 3-5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 28 at the United Methodist Church community room, 1825 East St., in Redding. Following the panel discussion, there will be a potluck dinner and musical performances by Native American hip hop artists, spoken word poets and local folk rock artists Feral Tortie.

Panelists will include:

  • Mickey Gemmill Jr, Chairman of the Pit River Tribe
  • Rod Lindsay, Director of the Local Indians for Education Center in the City of Shasta Lake
  • Jack Potter, Chairman of the Redding Rancheria
  • Caleen Sisk, Traditional Chief and Spiritual Leader of the Winnemem Wintu

The Dakota Access Pipeline would extend 1,168 miles across many states including North Dakota to carry crude oil from the Bakken oil fields to Illinois, where it will link with another pipeline to transport oil to refineries along the Gulf of Mexico. Members of the Standing Rock Sioux, who say the pipeline violates their treaty as well as federal law and that a spill would threaten their water supply, began a spiritual resistance against the pipeline this summer that has brought international attention and support.

This event is organized by Indigenous Peoples’ Day – Shasta County, an organization of Native and non-Native people formed to respectfully promote an accurate and inclusive history of the United States, the West and Northern California that recognizes the humanity and vitality of Pre- and Post-colonial indigenous societies.

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Pit River Tribe to host reader’s theatre and pot luck January 13

Click on flyer to enlarge

Click on flyer to enlarge

On January Friday 13, 2017, there will be a reading of a play entitled “Undamming History.” The event will held from 6-8 p.m. at the Pit River Tribal Community Room in the Pit River Health Services Building located on Park Ave. Burney, CA.

There will also be a pot luck dinner.

The community is invited to “Bring a dish and join an informal script read of the play about local tribal history that debuted Oct. 22 at the Cascade Theater. Have fun while learning about indigenous history!”

The Shasta Historical Society and four tribes in the area collaborated to create the work.

Marc Dadigan, Jack Potter, Louise Davis, Jessica Jim and others who were part of the committee that produced the play will be in attendance. Some of the actors who played roles at the debut in Redding are also planning to come. In addition, Patricia Lord from the Shasta Historical Society will be present and perhaps speak about the resources the society can provide.

If you would like more information on the program, please email marcdadigan@gmail.com. A copy of the script is available on the Shasta Historical Society’s website.

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Filed under Burney, Pit River Area History, Pit River Tribe

Happy Native American Day!

In 1998, the California Assembly passed AB 1953 making Native American Day an official state holiday, observed annually on the fourth Friday in September.

California has more than 100 recognized Native American tribes, representing a diverse cultural heritage extending back over thousands of years. Pit River Country is the home of the Achomawi people.

To celebrate this year’s California Native American Day, the Pit River Casino and Kwahn Corporation hosted a special Customer Appreciation Day.

The casino provided a delicious tri-tip barbecue.

Tri-tips barbecue, Music, and raffles

Tri-tips barbecue, Music, and raffles

The Pit River Nation Drum group were there singing and drumming sacred songs and music.

Pit River Drummers

Pit River Drummers

As the drummers drummed and sang, Lawrence Thomas danced in traditional regalia.

Pit River Drummers and Lawrence and Native American dancer Thomas

Pit River Drummers and Lawrence and Native American dancer Thomas

People who attended were given a beautiful Native American Day T-shirt. If they made a $5 purchase at the mini-mart they got a ticket for a $500 raffle at 3 p.m. Other prizes were drawn throughout the afternoon.

Pepsi, Sysco, Frito Lays, K&K Distributing Co., John and Sandy McCullar, the Mountain Cruisors, Burney Chamber of Commerce, Hovis Hardware, Precision Lube, Valley Hardware, and Mountain Auto Parts sponsored the event.

Evelyn Maldonada, one of the organizers said that the event was something to “bring the community together.”

Mike Avelar, Pit River Casino Manager said that they like to do things to support the community “because without the community, we would not be here.”

 

 

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Filed under Burney, Pit River Tribe

Tribal Youth Program teaches knowledge and skill

Photos courtesy of Lomakatsi Restoration Project

This July, ten young members of the Pit River Tribe ranging in age from 14-18 participated in a month long work and training program. The project combined science and cultural education with work to restore the ecology of the wild trout area of lower Hat Creek.

Tribal Youth, Elders, and Program Partners on opening day of the Pit River Tribal Ecosystem Workforce Training Program

Tribal Youth, Elders, and Program Partners on opening day of the Pit River Tribal Ecosystem Workforce Training Program

The Pit River Tribe, Lomakatsi Restoration Project, and Cal Trout cooperated to make the project a success. Cal Trout provided a grant to pay for the program. Pit River Tribe elders, cultural representatives and environmental technicians instructed the youth in Traditional Ecological Knowledge. Lomakatsi managed the program and employed the youth, providing technical expertise and professional mentors in ecological restoration.

The project included a full schedule of educational and hands-on activities.

The young people spent a week at a science camp at the College of the Siskiyous in Weed learning about the waterways, flora, and the fauna of the area.

The work project on Hat Creek involved trail improvement, restabilizing the banks, and helping to restore the natural oak environment along the creek. Belinda Brown, Tribal Partnership Coordinator for Lomakatsi Restoration Project, organized the work crews, picking up the young workers in the morning at the Safeway store and supervised their activities thoughout the day.

Trail improvement along Hat Creek

Trail improvement along Hat Creek

The group also visited Ajumawi Springs to study and repair fish traps.

Ginger Mike, Cultural Representative of the Ajumawi Band, shared about the importance of cultural resource protection and sacred sites.

Ginger Mike shares about the importance of cultural resource protection and sacred sites

Ginger Mike teaching about cultural resource protection and sacred sites

Participants learned about traditional foods such as pine nuts. The Hat Creek Ranger Station also addressed the group. In addition, the young people received some instruction in Achomawi language.

As a complement to learning traditional Pit River environmental technology, the young people were also treated to a day of fly fishing. Michelle Titus hosted the group at Clearwater Lodge and Drew Braugh from Cal Trout and three guides taught the young people fly fishing techniques.

Toward the end of the program the group was joined by tribal youth from the Ashland area in Southern Oregon. Radley Davis, Cultural Practitioner of the Illmawi Band, led a workshop teaching the young people to make a dugout canoe from a giant cedar tree trucked over from Old Station.

Dug out canoe workshop

Dug out canoe workshop

The program concluded with a visit by the combined youth programs to Burney Falls a traditional sacred site of the Illmawi Band of the Pit River Tribe.

Tribal Youth Project at Burney Falls

Tribal Youth and Ashland Youth Programs at Burney Falls

The Pit River Tribe is a sovereign federally recognized Native American Tribe consisting of 11 autonomous bands, whose homes and properties are distributed throughout the Upper Pit River watershed in northern California for time immemorial. The tribe contributed immensely to the success of the project.

“Protection and preservation of the cultural and environmental resources helps the tribe maintain sovereign jurisdiction over the tribe’s ancestral lands,” Chairman Gemmill said. “The partnerships have been able to provide economic and educational opportunities for the people.”

Lomakatsi in the Hopi language means “life in balance.” The Lomakatsi Restoration Project is a non‐profit, grassroots organization that develops and implements forest and watershed restoration programs and projects in Oregon and Northern California. Since 1995, Lomakatsi has formed collaborative partnerships with a broad range of partners including federal and state land management agencies, Native American Tribes, The Nature Conservancy, land trusts, private landowners, watershed councils, and city and county governments.

“Inspiring young people to pursue careers focused on the stewardship of forests, waterways and wildlife habitat is an important part of our mission,” Lomakatsi Executive Director Marko Bey said. “Traditional Ecological Knowledge is vital to successful ecosystem restoration.”

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Filed under Ajumawi State Park, Burney, Burney Falls, Hat Creek, Lake Britton, Pit River Tribe

Pit River Health Services hosts workshop on mental health

On Wednesday, May 18th the Pit River Health Services (PRHS) hosted a community workshop on mental health at the Pit River Community Center. The seminar took place from 12 noon to 1:30 p,m. and featured talks by staff members of the Pit River Behavioral Health program.

Mental Health workshop at Pit River Communnity Center

Angel Diaz speaking at the mental health workshop at Pit River Communnity Center

The program was opened by Rebecca Valenzuela who welcomed guests and gave information about how to contact the behavioral health center and make appointments.

Family Social Worker Angela Diaz described various programs and said she was available to help people go through the process of applying and filling out forms.

Substance Abuse Counselor Onita Viramontes advised listeners on potential hazards of marijuana use by young people. She said that the brain is not fully developed until a person is about 25 years old and THC can have an unhealthy impact on development. Marijuana use may augment anxiety and panic attacks in some people. It may also be a contributing factor to the development of other at-risk behaviors.

Substance Abuse Counselor Onita Viramontes

Substance Abuse Counselor Onita Viramontes

Patrick Curran, Marriage and Family Therapist, discussed boundaries and healthy relationships.

Frank Kearns talks about healthy relationships

Frank Kearns, the Behavioral Health Director at  PRHS gave a short but detailed presentation on the effects of trauma. Much of Mr. Kearns talk was based on a Kaiser Study on Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE). He also mentioned the work of The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

Behavioral Health Director Frank Kearns

Behavioral Health Director Frank Kearns

After showing a number of graphics statistically detailing the adverse effects of trauma and ACE, Mr. Kearns said that trauma could be collective or cultural as well as individual. To illustrate this point he ended by showing a poignantly poetic video entitled “We Shall Remain” by The StyleHorse Collective

The entire program was very pleasant and informative. A light lunch was served for participants. After the presentations there was a short period of question and answer.

The Behavioral Health Department at PRHS intends to hold more such events in the future. If you would be interested in receiving information concerning such events contact Rebecca Valenzuela rebecca.v@pitriverhealthservice.org

 

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Filed under Burney, Pit River Tribe