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Monthly Archives: November 2015

Teen Interns Experience Weekend Art Retreat in Minneapolis

On November 13-15, the Cheyenne River Youth Project® took its second cohort of art interns on a weekend art retreat that gave the eight teenagers an unparalleled opportunity to experience the Minneapolis art scene. CRYP staff members accompanied Xzanndria Norris, 15, Jaymalee Turning Heart, 14, Tori Jensen, 16, Ranger Gunville, 16, Nathanial Fast Wolf, 13, Donovan Moran, 13, Maxwell Peacock, 14, and Edward Norris Jr., 13, on their two-day adventure in the big city, which is home to two of their art instructors.

After arriving at the Hyatt and enjoying a movie night on Friday, the teens embarked on their art tour Saturday morning with a two-hour stop at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, followed by beverages and lunch at Espresso Royale and Uncle Frankie’s Hot Dogs. During the afternoon hours, they had the chance to tour the art studio belonging to Peyton Scott Russell, their lead art instructor, and tour some of the city’s most famous murals with Peyton and with Biafra, also a CRYP guest instructor.

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    CRYP Prepares for Annual Holiday Parties, Seeks Donors for 400+ “Dear Santa” Letters

CRYP Prepares for Annual Holiday Parties, Seeks Donors for 400+ “Dear Santa” Letters

The Thanksgiving holiday is upon us, which means the Cheyenne River Youth Project® has just one month left to fulfill the Christmas wishes of 1,500 children on South Dakota’s remote, 2.8-million-acre Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation. More than 1,000 letters have already been adopted by generous supporters, yet more remains to be done.

“We still have more than 400 ‘Dear Santa’ letters that need to be adopted,” said Julie Garreau, CRYP’s executive director. “That means we still need to take care of 400 children who wrote heartfelt letters in the hope that Santa Claus would bring a little extra happiness and magic to their homes this Christmas.

“Supporters who wish to join our Christmas Toy Drive efforts can contact us directly to get their Santa letters,” she continued. “Or, if they would prefer to contribute funds, they can donate via our website. We’re happy to do the shopping on our end to make sure Santa comes to these deserving kids.”

Christmas is a big deal on the CRYP calendar. This year’s toy drive geared up in late summer, and in just a matter of days, it will become an around-the-clock race as Christmas Eve and Christmas Day grow ever nearer. But first, CRYP will host its eagerly anticipated, annual holiday parties for the 4- to 12-year-olds at The Main youth center and the teenagers at the Cokata Wiconi (“Center of Life”) teen center.

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    Holiday Artists’ Market Will Include Tree Raffle, Book Fair, Student Art & More!

Holiday Artists’ Market Will Include Tree Raffle, Book Fair, Student Art & More!

On Saturday, November 21, the Cheyenne River Youth Project® will do more than host its 5th annual Holiday Artists’ Market. It will unveil its first-ever Festival of Trees, and Cheyenne River community members may purchase raffle tickets for a chance to win one of five Christmas trees decorated by local businesses and artisans.

The market is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Cokata Wiconi (“Center of Life”) teen center’s gymnasium. It will feature community artisans, craftspeople, chefs and bakers from around the community, as well as wares from CRYP’s Keya Gift Shop. In addition, the Keya Cafe & Coffeeshop will be open to the public throughout market day, with special menu items and baked goods; CRYP will be taking orders for holiday goodie boxes; and Santa Claus will spend the afternoon meeting children and posing for photographs.

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November Partner of the Month: Diabetes Action

For the past 25 years, Diabetes Action Research and Education has made it a priority to help reduce the extremely high incidence of diabetes in native communities, especially in South Dakota. In 1993, Diabetes Action helped fund construction of the first Indian-owned and managed kidney dialysis centers on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation; then, in 1998, it turned its attention northward, to the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation.

That year, Diabetes Action provided much-needed funding for the original Billy Mills Youth Center (affectionately called The Main) at the Cheyenne River Youth Project® campus, and a long-term, steadfast partnership was born.

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November Hall of Fame: Nathanial Fast Wolf

Nathanial Fast Wolf, 14, is a member of CRYP’s second cohort of Waniyetu Wowapi (“Winter Count”) Art Interns. He also served as a Sustainable Agriculture Intern in 2014, spending the summer in the Winyan Toka Win (“Leading Lady”) organic garden, and he’s a regular participant in the Cokata Wiconi (“Center of Life”) Book Club.

Nathanial says Book Club has been, by far, his favorite activity at CRYP. He’s completed two sessions to date, reading a total of eight novels, earning a new Kindle, and hiking Hinhan Kaga (Harney Peak) in March 2015 as part of a special session focused on Native American literature.

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    CRYP Wins 2015 Bush Prize & Wellmark Foundation Community Kickstarter Grant

CRYP Wins 2015 Bush Prize & Wellmark Foundation Community Kickstarter Grant

It’s been a huge week for the Cheyenne River Youth Project®, which has served children and families on South Dakota’s remote 2.8-million-acre Cheyenne River reservation for 27 years. The not-for-profit, grassroots youth organization has won the Bush Foundation’s 2015 Bush Prize for Community Innovation, and a Wellmark Foundation’s Community Kickstarter grant that will allow it to build the Waniyetu Wowapi (“Winter Count”) Art Walk.

CRYP is one of eight organizations to receive the 2015 Bush Prize. Along with its fellow award winners, it will receive an unrestricted grant equal to 25 percent of the organization’s budget for the previous fiscal year.

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Coming Soon: CRYP’s First-Ever “Festival of Trees!”

Less than eight weeks remain before the Christmas holiday, and staff and volunteers at the Cheyenne River Youth Project® are immersed in preparations. Not only are they hard at work on the 2015 Christmas Toy Drive, which seeks to bring holiday joy to 1,500 children across the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation, they’re hosting CRYP’s annual Star Quilt Raffle, and they’re preparing to unveil a very special new addition to the holiday season: the CRYP Festival of Trees.

Area businesses and organizations are invited to each decorate at tree at the Cokata Wiconi (“Center of Life”) teen center. Participating groups must register by November 13, and they may decorate their trees on November 18, 19 and 20. The trees will make their public debut on November 21 during the Holiday Artists’ Market.

“We’ll be providing the trees, but the participating groups will bring their own lights and decorations and decorate those trees however they see fit,” said Tammy Eagle Hunter, CRYP’s youth programs director. “It’s an opportunity for each organization to unleash its creativity, which is always fun, but it’s also a beautiful opportunity to demonstrate fellowship and good cheer as we go into this holiday season.”

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    5th Annual Holiday Artists’ Market Scheduled for November 21

5th Annual Holiday Artists’ Market Scheduled for November 21

In less than three weeks, the Cheyenne River Youth Project® will open the doors to its Cokata Wiconi (“Center of Life”) teen center for a very special annual event: the Holiday Artists’ Market. For the fifth consecutive year, the 27-year-old youth project will host community artisans, craftspeople, chefs and bakers as they make their wares available to the public in festive holiday environment.

The 5th annual Holiday Artists’ Market is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Cokata Wiconi gymnasium. Prospective vendors are encouraged to contact CRYP as soon as possible to reserve their tables.

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