3rd Annual Stickball Clinic & Exhibition

The Tunica-Biloxi Language & Culture Revitalization Program (LCRP) hosted the 3rd Annual Stickball Clinic & Exhibition on Saturday, February 17 at the Chief Joseph A. Pierite Pow Wow Grounds to teach local kids and neighboring indigenous communities the history and background of this historic sport.

Troy and Krista Langley and players from the Alabama-Coushatta stickball team of Livingston, TX lead the clinic on basic skills, rules and safety of the game. Afterwards, attendee played an exhibition game.

This was all a part of the Tribe’s mission to sustain culture and traditions.

Click here to view and share the photos of Facebook.

TUNICA-BILOXI TRIBE PARTICIPATES IN NATIONAL EVENT ON SAFETY FOR NATIVE WOMEN

Tunica-Funded Film ‘Wind River’ Screened at D.C. Talk Addressing Issues of Violence

Click here to view press-approved event photos.

Marksville, La. – (Feb. 22, 2018) – Recently, the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe and Tunica-Biloxi Economic Development Corporation served as partners of the National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center’s event titled “Understanding the Crisis of Missing and Murdered Native Women” which took place at the Capitol Visitor Center in Washington, D.C. The event was held to raise awareness of the crisis of missing and murdered native women and girls.

With the Violence Against Women Act set to expire in 2018 and native women experiencing violence at astronomical rates, the NIWRC and partners were approached by Congresswoman Norma Torres’ office to host a reception, briefing and educational showing of the film “Wind River.” The film highlights issues of violence toward native women and is the latest project of Acacia Entertainment, a finance and production company that is a joint venture between the Tunica-Biloxi Tribal Economic Development Corporation, a wholly owned entity of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana and Savvy Media Holdings.

The event itself was well attended by hill staffers, tribal leaders and advocates from across the country all of whom are actively engaged in addressing the issue of violence against native women.

Additional partners included the National Congress of American Indians, the National Indian Gaming Association, the Indian Law Resource Center, the StrongHearts Native Helpline, the Alaska Native Women’s Resource Center, the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe and the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community.

Through the success of the event, the NIWRC and partners hope to mobilize grassroots tribal advocates, tribal leaders, Members of Congress and staffers towards drafting and implementing legislation that addresses the full breadth of violence against native women and that Congress would find a way to end impunity for non-Native men who abuse native women on tribal lands. Tribes, as sovereigns, are in the best position to care for their people; this care must include the ability to prosecute non-natives for violence committed on tribal land. For more information and an in-depth overview of these issues visit, www.niwrc.org. 

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About the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe

The Tunica-Biloxi people first appeared in the Mississippi Valley. In the late 1700s, they settled near Marksville, where they were skilled traders and entrepreneurs. Today, the Tribe has more than 1,200 members throughout the United States, primarily in Louisiana, Texas and Illinois.

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe received federal recognition in 1981 for its reservation within the boundaries of Louisiana. The tribe owns and operates the Paragon Casino Resort, the largest employer in Central Louisiana. Through its compact, negotiated by the late Tribal Chairman Earl J. Barbry Sr. and the State of Louisiana, the Tribe has assisted local governments in the area with its quarterly distribution of funds, totaling more than $40 million over two decades. For more information about the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, visit www.tunica.org and “like” us on Facebook.

MEDIA CONTACT:
Dominique Ellis
(504) 250-0030
dellis@theehrhardtgroup.com

TUNICA-BILOXI TRIBE OF LOUISIANA LAUNCHES NEW BOOK HIGHLIGHTING TRIBE’S HISTORY AND CONTRIBUTIONS

A Second Edition of “The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe: Its Culture and People” Now Available

Marksville, La. – (Feb. 15, 2018) – The Tunica-Biloxi of Louisiana along with its Language and Culture Revitalization Program (LCRP) has released a second edition of their book, “The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe: Its Culture and People”. The new edition comes more than 30 years after the book’s original release in 1987 and contains new insights and information on the Tribe’s storied past and place in Louisiana history.

“The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe is ingrained in the culture and rich history of our region,” said co-author and Tunica-Biloxi LCRP Director John D. Barbry “Through the second edition of this book, we hope to fulfill our mission of sustaining our cultural influence and preserve our traditions for generations to come.”

The LCRP has brought the Tunica-Biloxi story to present with an expanded volume that includes recent scholarship and annotated photographs representing a broader cross-section of tribal families. The book tracks the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe from European contact to present and surveys its integral connection with the history of Louisiana and the lower-Mississippi region. The book also provides information on the linguistic significance of the Tribe’s native language which has recently been designated as “reawakening” by Ethnologue.com.

John D. Barbry, Donna M. Pierite and Elisabeth Pierite-Mora are the co-authors of this compelling work and serve as leaders of the LCRP, working to immerse the local and regional communities in the Tunica-Biloxi language and traditions. With backgrounds in historical archiving and linguistic education, the authors hold a unique perspective on the history of the Tribe and its place in Avoyelles Parish.

In addition to the authors, Dr. Patricia Anderson, Dr. Jeffrey P. Brain, Dr. Elizabeth N. Ellis, Dr. Hiram F. “Pete” Gregory, Dr. Raina Heaton, Dr. Brian Klopotek, Arlinda Locklear and Dr. Judith M. Maxwell all contributed their expertise to the book. Most notably, ethics and Native American culture expert, Dr. Brian Klopotek served as a principle editor and author of several articles throughout the work. Inspired by his own heritage as a non-federal Choctaw with Louisiana roots, Klopotek examines the ways Louisiana tribes have been affected by federal recognition policy, the politics of indigeneity and racial thinking.

This book was funded by the generous support of Lower Mississippi Delta Initiative of the National Park Service with assistance from Cane River Creole National Historical Park and the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana.

To purchase “The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe: Its Culture and People” visit the Tunica-Biloxi Museum  and CERC Library gift shop at 151 Melacon Drive in Marksville, Louisiana or pick up a copy in the LA1 Shop at Paragon Casino Resort next door. For more information call (800) 272-9767.

 

About the Authors:

 

John D. Barbry is director of development and programing for the Tunica-Biloxi Language and Culture Revitalization Program (LCRP). He maintains day-to-day administration and operations of the LCRP including event coordination, outreach coordination, budget planning and expenditures, fundraising, reporting, personnel, and communications. Prior to joining the LCRP staff, Barbry worked for twenty years in marketing and business development for the tribe. He holds an MA in history from University of New Orleans with an emphasis on archives management. He has held positions at the Historic New Orleans Collection (1987–93), Goodwin & Associates where he helped catalog the Tunica Treasure prior to repatriation, and the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution (1993–94), where he was the first appointed Native American archivist.  Barbry has chaired the Tunica-Biloxi Pow Wow Committee since 1995.

 

Donna M. Pierite is a language and lifeways instructor for the Tunica-Biloxi Language and Culture Revitalization Program (LCRP). She is responsible for lesson-planning, teaching, and directing educational assignments to promote the learning of the Tunica and Biloxi languages and culture. Pierite collaborates with Tulane University linguists in the Kuhpani Yoyani Luhchi Yoroniku (Tunica Language Working Group, KYLY) developing Tunica language foundational resources including linguistic texts, manuals, curricula, and pedagogical materials. She is a Louisiana State certified educator who has taught more than thirty-three years in Orleans and Avoyelles Parish schools. In addition to teaching French, Spanish, and English as a second language, Pierite has studied and taught Tunica since the 1970s

 

Elisabeth Pierite-Mora is a language and lifeways instructor for the Tunica-Biloxi Language and Culture Revitalization Program (LCRP) where she is responsible for facilitating learning of the Tunica and Biloxi languages and culture. Pierite-Mora collaborates with Tulane University linguists in the Kuhpani Yoyani Luhchi Yoroniku (Tunica Language Working Group, KYLY), developing Tunica language foundational resources including linguistic texts, manuals, curricula, and pedagogical materials. Pierite-Mora participated in the 2016 Institute on Collaborative Language Research (CoLang), a biannual training workshop in field linguistics and language documentation for linguistics students, professors, and members of indigenous language communities. Growing up in the Tunica, Biloxi, and Choctaw traditions of her family, Elisabeth has spoken Tunica since she was a child

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About the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe

The Tunica-Biloxi people first appeared in the Mississippi Valley. In the late 1700s, they settled near Marksville, where they were skilled traders and entrepreneurs. Today, the Tribe has more than 1,200 members throughout the United States, primarily in Louisiana, Texas and Illinois.

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe received federal recognition in 1981 for its reservation within the boundaries of Louisiana. The tribe owns and operates the Paragon Casino Resort, the largest employer in Central Louisiana. Through its compact, negotiated by the late Tribal Chairman Earl J. Barbry Sr. and the State of Louisiana, the Tribe has assisted local governments in the area with its quarterly distribution of funds, totaling more than $40 million over two decades. For more information about the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, visit www.tunica.org and “like” us on Facebook.

 

 

Tunica-Biloxi and Acacia Entertainment Recognized By National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center

The latest issue of Restoration Magazine by National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center shows some familiar faces from the Tunica-Biloxi tribe! The issue features the Tribe along with our Economic Development Corporation Acacia Filmed Entertainment following our recognition as philanthropists at the 2017 NIWRC Fundraiser.

This honor follows the success of the film, Wind River which shines a light on important issues in Native American communities.

“Wind River brings to the public spotlight the harsh reality and heartbreak of the issues of missing and murdered Native women and girls. We thank Taylor Sheridan, the film’s writer and director, and Acacia Filmed Entertainment, an entity of the Tunica-Biloxi Indian Tribe, for this amazing contribution. Wind River opens the door for our movement to educate across Indian tribes and nationally by answering the questions posed by the film.”

To view the full issue, click here. 

Tribal Elder Bingo Event

Thank you to everyone who participated in our recent Tribal Elder Bingo event and for all of our student volunteers! Tunica-Biloxi members enjoyed a fun day of bingo and even played a round in the Tunica language. Our special youth volunteers were able to engage with elder tribal members and brought some merriment by singing Tunica Christmas carols, Laspikochu Tenikata (Jingle Bells) and Ingrasashuhki Lapu (We wish you a Merry Christmas).

Our tribe is continuously working to sustain our culture and traditions. By bridging the gap between generations, we are working towards our mission of cherishing our past and building our future. To continue this initiative, the LCRP is inviting youth to participate in a Youth Essay contest through which students will interview tribal elders and write about their experiences. The deadline for submission is Friday, March 16. To learn more, click here. 

A reminder to vote for schools on November 18.

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana wants to remind every voter of a very important election. Early voting has already begun and runs through Sat., Nov 11. Election Day is November 18.

The Avoyelles Parish School Board is requesting renewal of two millages: one for operations and another for facility construction and repair. Recently, the school board has improved safety in parish schools with the addition of security doors and fences as well as video cameras on all campuses. The system has also added new buildings across the district. Remember – these are renewalsnot new taxes. If the measures fail, it would cost our system $1.4 million dollars per year. Please vote for schools on November 18.

TRIBES FROM THREE STATES JOIN TUNICA-BILOXI TRIBE FOR 2ND ANNUAL INTERTRIBAL BASKETRY SUMMIT

Marskville, LA – (Oct. 31, 2017) – The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana’s Language and Culture

Revitalization Program (LCRP) hosted its 2nd Annual Intertribal Basketry Summit on Saturday, Oct. 28 at Paragon Casino Resort.

Master weavers throughout regional Native American communities joined Tunica members in a modern-day effort to keep their cultural traditions alive. The summit serves as an informal forum for participants at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels to share elements of their culture and demonstrate southeast basketry techniques using pine needle, river cane and palmetto.

This year, master weavers from Native American communities in Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas and Oklahoma attended to demonstrate and discuss their unique styles. To add to the experience, basket weavers set-up tables to sell their basket creations on-site to the public.

In addition to weavers from the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, representatives from the following tribes participated:

  • Coushatta of Kinder, LA
  • Alabama-Coushatta of Livingston, TX
  • Chitimacha Tribe of Charenton, LA
  • Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma
  • Clifton Choctaw of Louisiana
  • United Houma Nation of Louisiana

Additionally, two non-tribal weavers who learned the art from Choctaw elders in Louisiana and Mississippi participated.

“Thank you to all who participated in the second year of this exciting event which allows Native Americans to share their ancestors’ basketry styles in a communal and engaging way,” said Marshall Ray Sampson, Vice Chairman of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana.  “We hope that by encouraging our people to continue learning the art of basketry, the tradition will live on for generations to come.”

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About the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe

The Tunica-Biloxi people first appeared in the Mississippi Valley. In the late 1700s, they settled near Marksville, where they were skilled traders and entrepreneurs. Today, the Tribe has more than 1,200 members throughout the United States, primarily in Louisiana, Texas and Illinois.

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe received federal recognition in 1981 for its reservation within the boundaries of Louisiana. The tribe owns and operates the Paragon Casino Resort, the largest employer in Central Louisiana. Through its compact, negotiated by the late Tribal Chairman Earl J. Barbry Sr. and the State of Louisiana, the Tribe has assisted local governments in the area with its quarterly distribution of funds, totaling more than $40 million over two decades. For more information about the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, visit www.tunica.org and “like” us on Facebook.

 

 

 

 

 

TUNICA-BILOXI TRIBE OF LOUISIANA TO HOST 2ND ANNUAL INTERTRIBAL BASKETRY SUMMIT ON OCT. 28

WHEN:  Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017 | 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

WHERE: Paragon Casino Resort, Chiqui Ballroom | 711 Paragon Place, Marksville, Louisiana 71351

WHAT: The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana’s Language and Culture Revitalization Program (LCRP) will hold its 2nd Annual Intertribal Basketry Summit.

Each year, the LCRP invites master weavers throughout regional Native American communities to its Intertribal Basketry Summit. The summit serves as an informal forum for participants to share elements of their culture and demonstrate southeast basketry techniques using pine needle, river cane and palmetto. Master weavers from Native American communities in Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas and Oklahoma will be on hand to demonstrate and discuss their unique styles. Some weavers will have their basket creations available for sale at the event.

In addition to weavers from the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, participants hail from the following tribes:

  • Coushatta of Kinder, LA
  • Alabama-Coushatta of Livingston, TX
  • Chitimacha Tribe of Charenton, LA
  • Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma
  • Clifton Choctaw of Louisiana
  • United Houma Nation of Louisiana

Additionally, two non-tribal weavers will participate who learned the art from Choctaw elders in Louisiana and Mississippi.

“We are excited to kick-off the second year of this event and allow Native Americans to share their ancestors’ basketry styles in a communal and engaging way,” said Marshall Ray Sampson, Vice Chairman of the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana.  “We hope that by encouraging our people to continue learning the art of basketry, the tradition will live on for generations to come.”

The Intertribal Basketry Summit is free and open to the public. Participants at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels are encouraged to attend and learn. The beginner group seeking instruction is limited to 12 participants and the overall summit is limited to 45 participants. Registration for weavers is $20 and includes lunch and a full cultural experience. Participants must register in advance by contacting LCRP program assistant Megan Anderson at manderson@tunica.org or (318) 240-6468.

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About the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe

The Tunica-Biloxi people first appeared in the Mississippi Valley. In the late 1700s, they settled near Marksville, where they were skilled traders and entrepreneurs. Today, the Tribe has more than 1,200 members throughout the United States, primarily in Louisiana, Texas and Illinois.

The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe received federal recognition in 1981 for its reservation within the boundaries of Louisiana. The tribe owns and operates the Paragon Casino Resort, the largest employer in Central Louisiana. Through its compact, negotiated by the late Tribal Chairman Earl J. Barbry Sr. and the State of Louisiana, the Tribe has assisted local governments in the area with its quarterly distribution of funds, totaling more than $40 million over two decades. For more information about the Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana, visit www.tunica.org and “like” us on Facebook.