Downtown Olympia has been bustling with volunteers and city staff as the Port of Olympia prepares for the 2012 Paddle to Squaxin Tribal Canoe Journey.
About 130 boats are expected to arrive around 12 p.m. this Sunday at Port of Olympia’s NorthPoint area. The Squaxin Island Tribe is this year’s official host and will be greeting the thousands of indigenous people paddling hundreds of miles to meet for the “Healing of the Waters” ceremony.
The ceremonies are scheduled between arrival time and 1 p.m., depending on the tides. The NorthPoint area will be open at 10 a.m. for visitors. A week-long celebration and potlatch protocol will follow.
There will be food, information and merchant vendors at the event.
Tribal Journeys began in 1989, with a paddle to Seattle. Since then, the annual celebration has brought opportunity to share the culture and teachings of tribal ancestors. This is the Squaxin Tribe’s first year hosting.