Little River Band of Ottawa IndiansAnishnaabee Camp is Helping to Keep Language Alive

Kenny Pheasant began the language camp 25 years ago to preserve the Anishnaabemowin language. Native News Online photos by Levi Rickert

Published July 28, 2018

MANISTEE, Mich. — Kenny Pheasant told the attendees at the 25th Annual Anishinaabe Family Language & Culture Camp that a man approached him a couple of years ago and told Pheasant he was one of the kids who would come to the summer camp and run around the grounds and climb on the rails. Now, the man is one of the teachers of the camp.

Pheasant then jokingly told the attendees that there is hope for the kids gathered on Friday evening at the Little River Band of Ottawa Indians tribal gathering grounds where many of the language camp attendees would camp this weekend to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the camp. Pheasant started the camp 25 years ago to help preserve Anishnaabemowin, the language of the Anishnaabe nation and has seen a couple of generations of Native children attend the camp. Anishnaabemowin is one of North America’s oldest languages.

With the eagle staff in place, the Anishnaabemowin language is taught to attendees.

This weekend some 500 people from numerous states in the United States and some provinces in Canada.

Friday night attendees were treated by performers who entertained them on talent night.

The camp continues all weekend long at the Little River Tribal Gathering Grounds at US-31/M-22, across from the Little River Casino and Resort, Manistee, Michigan.

Gary DiPiazza, tribal councilor, Little River Band of Ottawa.


Two generations celebrating their Native heritage.

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