Environmental Ancestry Storytelling; Indian Month Events, and NFL Mascot Dust-Up Over the Duluth Eskimos

You are invited to a special evening of storytelling featuring cultural artists Ifrah Mansour and Louis Alemayehu, together with live music and stories from community members. All are welcome to this free gathering, modeled after live storytelling initiatives such as The Moth.

Sponsored by Minneapolis Interfaith Power and Light, the event is Thursday, May 16, 2019 at 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at the Hook at Ladder Theater and Lounge, 3010 Minnehaha Ave., Minneapolis.

Together participants will listen to narratives from the heart of our community – stories that may help us learn something more about ourselves as well our neighbors.

Louis Alemayehu is a multicultural elder born in Chicago of African and Native heritage, who developed his poetic skills and musical sensibilities as a part of the Black Arts Movement in the 1970s. He believes that poetry is a tool for healing; his performances are lyrical twinings of jazz, chant, poetry and song with art-as-ritual, often performed ceremonially. He teaches Environmental Sustainability in Minnesota at the Higher Education Consortium for Urban Affairs.

Ifrah Mansour is a Somali, refugee, muslim, multimedia artist and an educator residing in Minnesota. Her artwork explores trauma through the eyes of children to uncover the resiliencies of blacks, muslims, and refugees. She interweaves poetry, puppetry, films, and installations. Ifrah has been featured in BBC, Vice, Okayafrica, Star Tribune, and City Pages.

More details at the Facebook Event Page.

May is Indian Month

Local events for Indian Month include an Open House (games, prizes, food and raffle) at the Minneapolis American Indian Center, 1531 Franklin Ave. E., on Wednesday, May 15, noon – 2 p.m. as well as presentations by New Native Theater of “Laughing Matters, a Blood Quantum Workshop.”

For a full list of local Indian Month events, click here.

Minnesota Vikings Latest in NFL Mascot Controversy

Indian County Today publishes a weekly list of its most read stories, and I was surprised to see the image of a Minnesota Vikings helmet pop up in the graphic.

The NFL had applied for the trademark for the Duluth Eskimos for a single game, according to the Sporting News. Speculation swirled that the Vikings would wear these 1920’s throwback uniforms for a game.

The Indian Country Today story ran the headline: “Minnesota Vikings can’t be serious: NFL plan to use a Native-related mascot for one game” and it included the following commentary:

There is an irony in the Minnesota franchise use of this mascot. When the Washington NFL franchise plays in Minnesota there are often protests with thousands of people in front of the stadium.

An update from MPR says the uniform idea is a nonstarter.

Another update: The Vikings 2019 football schedule includes a Thursday evening home game against the Washington Reds*ins.

See you at the protest.

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