We had a blessing/thanksgiving in the woods behind Klukwan on January 17, 2014.. We are harvesting some trees from our own tribal lands to build the replica clan house interior where the Whale House collection will be exhibited. Klukwan elder Joe Hotch helped with the ceremony, talking to the tree and telling it “God made you, and now you are going to live with the Gaanaxteidi people. Many people from all over the world are going to come and see you.” It was a special time and a great atmosphere with a balmy mist in amongst the cottonwood and spruce trees.
After the tree blessing ceremony a handful of us went down to the Heritage Center Building (shell) where Joe Hotch brought out the Brown Bear Chilkat Tunic that was once Chief Kudeinahaa’s. He said he wanted to bring the Brown Bear tunic out to support the Gaanaxteidi clan–to give strength and encouragement to them as they prepare a new home for their totems. Jones Hotch Jr. responded with thanks to his father’s people, the Brown Bear House of the Kaagwaantaan, for their show of support. Jones also remarked that the Brown Bear Tunic was the first at.oow to be brought into the Heritage Center Building. It was an awesome moment! Really! It was such a good feeling to be in the building and to have one of the clan treasures from the village to be brought out in there. I think it is the first of many awesome events that will be held in the Heritage Center Building.