17th Annual Karuk Reunion
No matter that the heat in the park would soar over 105 later in the day, it was a beautiful morning! The air was fresh and optimistic for a great Karuk Reunion. This is the 17fh year that the Karuk Tribe has held a reunion and it was wonderful. The Chairman, Buster Attebery welcomed everyone, and Sonny Davis gave a Karuk prayer. After a moment of silence for those who have passed from our worldly community, there was a recognition of the elders. Le Loni had prepared gifts for the full blooded Karuk’s: Lucille (Johnson) Albers, Charron Davis, Nancy (Jerry) Super and Charlie Thom, Sr. Le Loni also had mugs for 73 members who are 85 and older. Robert Super was the Master of Ceremonies and the sound system was operated by Scott Nelson and Josh Hillman.
Everyone dispersed to enjoy the various vendors and activities for the day. Storytelling, guest speakers, and girls traditional dress show by Julie Burcell were presented. Traditional Indian Games as well as Brush Dance demonstration as well as poker, watermelon eating contest and horseshoe games. There was fun for the children when the water slide arrived! They also enjoyed face painting, bubble making, and throwing darts at balloons for prizes!
Dion Wood was handing out t-shirts to color. Usually the coloring enthusiasts are mostly the young, but I noticed this year that all ages were represented; It is the image of a Karuk basket, surrounded by a dozen salmon.
I was amazed at energetic Zumba dancing in the heat. There were bottles of water available to all, and a shaded tent to sit and rest with misters in several locations.
The Reunion actually started Friday night for the youth with events at Headway followed by a Teen Dance at the Karuk Gymnasium. Saturday morning started with a 5K run and a 2 mile fun Walk with Jaclyn Goodwin.
But, of course, the best thing about the Reunion is the opportunity to visit with friends and neighbors, especially those who return to Happy Camp. Robert Foster stopped by the Chamber and said he was related to the Titus and Whittaker families. Aunts, uncles and cousins were receiving hugs all around. It was a good time catching up with the happy news and new additions to families as well as difficulties of the past year.