LUMMI ISLAND, Wash. — The Lummi Nation is bringing back an ancestral tradition.
The annual Lummi Nation Canoe Journey made a stop at Lummi Island at Legoe Bay on Friday. It was the last leg of their journey home and this is the first time they have ever stopped here.
Four canoes landed at the Salish Center for Sustainable Fishing Methods Beach on Lummi Island before ending at the Stommish Grounds in Bellingham.
They say it's a great honor for the Salish Center because canoe landings are very ritualized.
"It's a way of all of the people who have been separated for so long, and we have been," Lummi Nation Headman Jim Thomas said. "It's our way of coming together, of sharing our cultures, and of gathering strength so that we can face the future, which may not be as kind as the past has been."
The canoe journey is a two-week to month-long voyage undertaken in traditional 12-person canoes. It is followed by many days of gathering people and sharing food, song and dance, according to the Whatcom Museum.
Since 1989, this significant cultural experience has occurred annually and is hosted by different tribal nations of and around the Salish Sea.
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