How to Celebrate and Support Native American Heritage Month in Seattle
NATIVE AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH IN SEATTLE
Native American / Alaskan Native Month takes place in November in the state of Washington. Our state is rich in Native culture with 29 federally recognized and 3 non federally recognized tribes in the state of Washington.
Seattle, and surrounding areas, rests on the ancestral lands of the Coast Salish peoples, including the Duwamish, Suquamish, Snoqualmie, and more. In honoring Native American Heritage Month and beyond, we seek to celebrate and amplify the diverse voices and contributions of Indigenous Americans, while acknowledging and learning about their history.
Our commitment extends beyond a month, aiming to integrate Indigenous perspectives into our city's narrative. Supporting Native cultural events and establishments is crucial for fostering understanding, breaking stereotypes, and contributing to reconciliation. By doing so, we actively promote a more equitable future, valuing the rich tapestry of cultures that have shaped Seattle from time immemorial.
Here are some key ways to celebrate Native American Heritage in and around Seattle:
Cultural Festivals and Social Events
Seattle hosts various cultural and social events celebrating Native American and Alaskan Native cultures. These events often feature traditional music, dance performances, the environment, and culinary delights.
Cultural Centers & Events to check out:
Seattle's vibrant arts scene often includes special exhibitions, book readings, concerts, and performances highlighting Native American and Alaskan Native artists and creators. This provides a platform for local talent to showcase their work and share their cultural heritage.
Local museums, performances, and film festivals:
Eat, Drink and Shop
During Native American Heritage Month in Seattle, support Native-owned establishments by savoring Native cuisine at local restaurants, exploring unique neighborhood shops, getting a tattoo, hiring an electrical contractor and visiting Native-owned salons for an engaging experience.
Some of our favorite establishments:
Via Tribunali has locations in Capitol Hill and Queen Anne and offers authentic Neapolitan pizza and a wide variety of wines and local beers.
ʔálʔal Café (pronounced all-all) is owned by Chief Seattle Club and in addition to coffee their menu reintroduces traditional Indigenous foods to remind us that food connects us to culture and contributes to our understanding of Indigenous roots and identity.
Little Tin Goods & Apothecary Cabinet is a garden-styled speakeasy, and tiki lounge that aims to share Native Hawaiian culture, food, and music.
Off the Rez Cafe & Off the Rez Food Truck serve delicious traditional Blackfeet fry bread, tacos, and other creations inspired by the owner's family recipes.
Eighth Generation is a shop owned by the Snoqualmie tribe with a strong, ethical alternative to “Native-inspired” art through its artist-centric approach and 100% Native-designed products.
Sacred Circle Gallery and Gift Shop is owned by United Indians of All Tribes Foundation and is home to a curated collection of Native-made, designed, and conceptualized goods.
Kaigani Craft sells handwoven jewelry, basketry, and clothing. Owner Jacinthe Demmert learned traditional style of basketry from her mother and wood-crafting from her father, which led her to explore innovative ways to work with textiles.
Indian Summer is a community space that truly welcomes all, and has an awesome, fairly-priced, vintage find for everyone. The owner donates 20% of all profits to charity, and hosts community meals and events to celebrate and come together in community.
Opal Nail Studio brings new life to nails with a kaleidoscope of colors and healthier, less toxic nail care options. Plus, all their nail art is hand-painted!
In Bloom Salon & Beauty Boutique offers a variety of high-quality cosmetic services in a welcoming, relaxing environment. The beauty professionals at In Bloom use top-of-the-line products free of parabens and sulphates.
Dark Horse Tattoo runs on service that is wholly focused on the customer experience. Whether you’re looking for bold color work, smooth black and grey, or crisp linework, when you visit Dark Horse you can expect to walk out with a beautiful custom tattoo
OHM Electrical Contracting is a full-service electrical contractor in Seattle. They are specialists in renewable energy and provide residential, commercial, industrial, and consulting services.
See a comprehensive list of Native-owned establishments on the Intentionalist website
NATIVE AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH DEFINED:
Native American Heritage Month is a time when we acknowledge, learn, and celebrate the cultures and customs celebrated and the history and obstacles faced by Native Americans, the United States "first Americans."
To this day not all states have adopted a Native American Day and the date varies state by state. In New York for instance it is celebrated in September, Washington in November, and some states celebrate it on Columbus Day.
Many people express confusion over referring to things as Native American or Indigenous. The term Native American is defined as a member of any of the indigenous peoples of North, Central, and South America, especially those indigenous to what is now the continental US. In other words, native people and indigenous people are the same thing. The addition of the term American clarifies where the indigenous people are from. Some people have felt the word native has a negative connotation, so they began using the term indigenous.
The problem with using the term indigenous people alone without adding the term American when it refers to Native American Heritage Month is it does not acknowledge that you are referring to indigenous people from America and takes away from the acknowledgment and history of a group that has struggled to be acknowledged. A people who were taken away from their land, and put on land that was not wanted by settlers or the government (reservations).
Learn more about Native America / Alaskan Native Heritage Month