Toward Right Relationship with Native Peoples

Boulder Celebrates Indigenous Peoples Day with Arapaho Guests

Hinóno’éí women lead Boulder residents in a Friendship Dance. Photo by Rich Saxon.

Three years ago, TRR’s Jerilyn DeCoteau (Turtle Mountain Chippewa) and Paula Palmer founded Right Relationship Boulder, a group of Native and non-Native people who are committed to lifting up the history, presence, and contributions of Indigenous Peoples in the Boulder Valley. On October 13, Right Relationship Boulder celebrated its second annual Indigenous Peoples Day, honoring the Hinóno’éí (Arapaho) people whose ancestors were displaced from the Boulder Valley as well as Native people from many tribes who live in the area today. See local news coverage here.

Nóóbe’sei Nííbei (Billie Sutton), a Southern Arapaho tribal legislator, wrote:

We had another wonderful Indigenous Peoples Day with the citizens of Boulder, Colorado this past Sunday. This is the second year the Hinóno’éí people from the south and the north have been invited and we are grateful to once again be in our homeland.
It is a wonderful time when the Hinóno’éí people can be one again, united again.

How awesome would it be if every city across the nation would extend the invitation to all tribes that inhabited the area before them. To offer the hand of reconciliation and recognition. Perhaps they will follow the lead of the Boulder, Colorado citizens.
The Boulder citizens are very good to us, very respectful, and treated us well. It was nice to visit with some and you could tell they were genuine people.

My brother, Chief Elvin Kenrick and I have been working with the Right Relationship – Boulder group since the beginning and have forged many friendships and hopefully future endeavors for the Southern Arapaho people. We work in conjunction with our northern relatives to make this happen.

But I want to reiterate that the ENTIRE funding came from the citizens of Boulder. Through grants and donations we were able to go.
There are so many people to thank that I couldn’t name them all. But I did want to thank Paula Palmer, Jerilyn DeCoteau, and Jake Matlak. It takes a lot of work to raise the money and organize the IPD event.

I also want to thank Kendricks Sleeper for organizing the Star Hawk Gourd Clan. The Southern Arapaho group that participated represented us well. I’m so proud of all of you!