Talk te’ya’ at camp

Eyak Culture camp focuses on fish, language

This year’s Eyak Culture Camp will focus on fish – known as te’ya’ in the Eyak language – eating it, celebrating it and talking about it.

The annual gathering in the ancestral homelands of the Eyak People, called dAXunhyuu, runs from July 29 through 31. All events are free and open to the public.

“Te’ya’ was, and still is, such a vital part of who we are as Eyaks and that’s worth celebrating and sharing with our children, each other and everyone else in this community,” said Jenna May, Project Director of the Eyak Language Revitalization Program.  “We are ready to talk te’ya, learn some more about our beautiful language, eat some incredible Native food and have a whole lot of fun.”

The three-day gathering will feature a special workshop for children, who will have the opportunity to perform a dramatization of a traditional te’ya’ tale. Attendees will also have the chance to help build a portable cedar smokehouse. Special guest speakers include Michael Krauss, the linguist who began documenting the Eyak language back in the 1960s. Robert Francis, a U.S. Forest Service cartographer, will also be speaking. He has developed a pilot project to restore indigenous place names and hopes to collaborate with Eyaks to identify culturally significant areas to be renamed.

Most events are scheduled at the community room at the Orca Adventure Lodge in Cordova.

For more information, you can go online to EyakPeople.com