Canku Ota - A Newsletter Celebrating Native America
October 21, 2000 - Issue 21

Trip To Mankato
by Students at Birdtail Sioux School, Birdtail Sioux Reserve, Beulah, Manitoba

From September 13th to 17th my classmates and I travelled to Mankato Minnesota. Our teachers and the staff at our school organized the trip so we could find out more about our people. Sharing and learning about our ancestors is extremely important to my friends and I. Being a Dakota is who I am. I need to understand the past so it will help me today.

While in Mankato we visited many historical sites. First we visited the Lower Sioux Agency. We saw the remains of an old stone warehouse that was built in 1861. This was where our people stored their food many years ago. We examined a garden that grew tomatoes, corn, turnips, sunflowers and wheat. We learned how our people used to grow these vegetables. We walked along paths that were used long ago. A big thanks goes to our tour guides Charissa and Roger.

Mike and Dave from the Interpretive Center took us for lunch to their home reserve. We visited their Casino and Community. It was a fun filled day. Thanks Mike and Dave!

Land of Memories Park is where we camped. There was a Pow-wow organized there to honor 38 Dakotas who were hung in 1862. The dancers were very colorful and rhythmic especially the Aztec Dancers. They were barefoot and ran wildly around. On their head they wore very large bright feathers. It was something we shall always remember. Thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Bruce Dowlin for setting everything up for us. Another site which we shall never forget is the Reconciliation Park. It is the place where the executions took place. It has a statue of a Winter Warrior and a very large Buffalo. Both are placed near the site so we can always remember that day. On Saturday we travelled to the Mall Of America in Minneapolis. Along the way we stopped at the Treaty Site Museum in St. Petersburg. Here we saw artifacts from the early 1800s. We learned about the signing of the Treaty between the U.S. Government and the Dakota People. An interesting point about the museum was that it was constructed in a half circle to symbolize the broken treaty. Visiting and shopping at the mall was very exciting. Mrs. Pratt gave us tickets to ride the roller coaster. We had 2 hours to play and shop. It was a great day.

This trip was one of the best adventures the school ever organized. We found out about our history and homeland. We learned how and why the Dakotas came to Canada. It meant everything to me. If I had the chance Id do it all again.

Students at Birdtail Sioux School

Dakota Curriculum Project



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