TULE BOAT YOUTH EDUCATION PROJECT
The Costanoan Rumsen Carmel Tribe is dictated to preserving our cultural heritage. Connecting to our environment and implementing cultural knowledge.
For Thousands of years the bay area was filled with tule boats. These boats provided trade, fishing, and transport. Constructed from locally sourced material. Tule can be found throughout the Ohlone territory with many different purposes. The Ohlone would harvest the tule for boats, homes, mats, baskets, duck decoys, toys and rope.
Today, the Costanoan Rumsen Carmel Tribe intends to partner with East Bay Regional Park District to organize and implement this tule boat project. The project will engage a council of Ohlone Youth to gather the materials for and construct a traditional tule boat. The children will learn how to gather tule using the traditional methods of their ancestors. The intention is promote strength in unity, connecting the youth to ancestral lands they otherwise would never see. The tule boat will serve as a symbol of how our people are still present in the Bay Area, still alive, still actively engaged with ancestral heritage, and posing the question: What does it mean to indigenous person in California today, working and living in a community?
The Tule boat itself will serve as integral focus piece of our annual Big Time Gathering, as interpretive art. It will be displayed in the Rob Hill Campgrounds of the Presidio of San Francisco October 19th 2018. The Public will be welcomed to admire it. Reflecting on its significance through viewing of a film that documents the gathering/construction process as well as an ensuing discussion panel of tribal participants. We anticipate this simple activity will inspire our youth. Bringing them outside to nature, but more importantly, into contact again with the land and traditions of our ancestors.