Dena'ina Heyi celebrates host culture

Dena’ina Heyi celebrates host culture

A winter celebration known in the Dena’ina language as a Heyi retuned to Kenai on the first Friday in February at the Kenai Visitor & Cultural Center (KVCC.) “Since ancient times the Heyi has been a time to connect with family and the people that lived up river or down river from you that you hadn’t been able to see during the summer. A time to share stories and reconnect with those you shared the land with,” said Kenaitze Indian Tribe member Sasha Lindgren,

“Today we opened the Heyi up in the KVCC museum because the traveling Dena’ina Way of Living Exhibit is on display here through May 10th. We wanted to share with all our community, neighbors and friends to say that winter is a good time get together,” she said.

Those who came out for the Heyi enjoyed traditional fry bread and salmon dip provided by several tribe members from salmon caught at the tribes educational fishery, “Whenever we get together we share our food. We sit and talk and share stories and songs,” said Lindgren.

Throughout the day the winter celebration included music and stories by Artz Kilcher and Kenai Tribe member Bunny Swan. The Kenai exhibit is a condensed version of the Dena’ina Way of Living that opened originally in Anchorage and involves state of the art digital displays that bring the culture to life in the 21st century.

“Peter Kalifornsky and all our elders contributed in their way to building a base for the Kenaitze Indian Tribe from which we have been able to grow, revitalize and preserve and protect our culture while working together with our community so we can all be happy living here on the Kenai Peninsula, the good land and we look forward to doing it again next year,” she said.

According to Johna Beech, KVCC CEO the exhibit was made possible through the cooperation of the Anchorage Museum and the Rasmuson Foundation.

Dena'ina Heyi celebrates host culture
Dena'ina Heyi celebrates host culture
Dena'ina Heyi celebrates host culture

More in News

Alaska Rep. David Eastman, a Republican from Wasilla, sits at his desk on the Alaska House floor in Juneau, Alaska, on March 5, 2020. Alaska lawmakers are discussing whether to sanction Eastman who is also a member of the Oath Keepers far-right paramilitary organization according to the Anchorage Daily News. Eastman, who is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy, confirmed with the Associated Press, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022, that he joined the Oath Keepers a little over 12 years ago, “along with 38,000 others who have committed to honoring oaths we have taken.” (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer, File)
State lawmaker could be sanctioned over Oath Keeper ties

Eastman was identified as a “life member” of the Oath Keepers last year

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
As cases surge, public health officials contemplate how to live with virus

Contact tracing and data collection will have to be reworked if COVID is here to stay

Upper Cook Inlet Exclusive Economic Zone can be seen on this map provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. (Image via fisheries.noaa.gov)
Soldotna approves filing of EEZ lawsuit brief

The lawsuit seeks to reopen commercial salmon fishing in the Upper Cook Inlet Exclusive Economic Zone

University of Alaska Interim President Pat Pitney, bottom left, spoke to UA students in a virtual forum on Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022, and was joined by several UA administrators including UA Southeast President Karen Carey, bottom left, and UA Anchorage Vice Chancellor Bruce Schultz, top left. At top right, an American Sign Language professional provides translation services. (Screenshot)
UA President: University has turned a corner on funding

System sees modest increase in budget for first time in years

Sen. Shelley Hughes, R-Palmer; Senate President Peter Micciche, R-Soldotna; Sen. Gary Stevens, R-Kodiak and Sen. Click Bishop, R-Fairbanks, spoke to reporters Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2022, immediately following Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s State of the State address. Members of the Senate Republican leadership said they appreciated the governor’s optimism, and hoped it signaled a better relationship between the administration and the Legislature. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Lawmakers welcome tone change in governor’s address

With caveats on financials, legislators optimistic about working together

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
COVID deaths, hospitalizations climb statewide

The total number of statewide COVID deaths is nearly equivalent to the population of Funny River.

A fisher holds a reel on the Kenai River near Soldotna on June 30, 2021. (Photo by Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Restrictions on sport fishing announced

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced summer sport fishing regulations Wednesday

Community agencies administer social services to those in need during the Project Homeless Connect event Soldotna Regional Sports Complex in Soldotna on Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2022. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
‘It’s nice to be able to help folks’

Project Homeless Connect offers services, supplies to those experiencing housing instability

Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce attends the March 2, 2021, borough assembly meeting at the Betty J. Glick Assembly Chambers at the Borough Administration Building in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Former talk-show host to manage Pierce gubernatorial campaign

Jake Thompson is a former host of KSRM’s Tall, Dark and Handsome Show and Sound-off talk-show

Most Read