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It's not easy to convince people at the Winnebago Tribe Powwow to talk about politics and the upcoming election. It's not only talking over the steady, infectious rhythm of the drum groups performing in the dance circle. There's often a sense that Native people get left off the radar of the people campaigning for office. In fact, if there's something everyone agrees on, regardless of political philosophy, it's that candidates need to make a swing through the reservation more often.

When Leanndra was born, Dorey and Yolanda Nez took their newborn daughter for a picnic  in the mountains near the family's home on the Navajo Reservation in New Mexico. On the outing, Leanndra received such a bad sunburn that her face swelled up, and her eyes temporarily sealed off. Leanndra was born with XP.

Victoria Blackie (Navajo) won "Debut Artist of the Year" from the Native American Music Awards in 2010. Victoria sings country music and her style is similar to country-music legend Patsy Cline. In 2002, Victoria performed at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. Victoria started performing at the age of 8 and she continues to work toward her goal of breaking into the Nashville music scene. Victoria Blackie is a rising star and her first album Wanted Man has won various music awards.

The bison is an icon of the Great Plains with a history that predates the arrival of humans in North America. Since their arrival, the 10,000-plus year relationship between humans and bison has been tumultuous and grown increasingly complex in modern times following the animal's near extinction coinciding with America's western expansion.

Brothers Jeremy and Jerome Thompson grew up in two worlds--two cultures. As members of the Onondaga Tribe, the brothers grew up in the sovereign Onondaga Nation, located a few miles south of Syracuse, N.Y. In Lukas Korver’s latest documentary, The Medicine Game, Korver captures the unique bicultural lives of the Thompson brothers as they prepare to transition from high school to college, all while making a name for themselves as two of the best lacrosse players in America.  

“Lacrosse is their dream,” Korver said. “It’s their life.”

Julie Cajune is a member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of Montana. She holds a bachelor's in elementary education and a master's in bilingual education. Julie was the first to teach the Salish language in the school system on the Flathead Reservation in Montana. She is also the executive director of the Center for American Indian Policy and Applied Research of the Heartlines Project. She was profiled in UTNE Reader as one of “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World.”

At 18-years-old, Monique Verdin (Houma) never intended to make a film for PBS. She wanted to return to her family’s ancestral home in southeastern Louisiana to document and preserve the traditional Houma ways of her grandmother. Upon arrival, events unfurled that would forever change the lives of Verdin, her family and their beloved home. My Louisiana Love is Verdin’s story of love, loss and life in the wetlands of southeastern Louisiana.

When you think of Native American music, do marching bands, trumpets, clarinets and flutes come to mind? If not, Cathleen O’Connell has a story for you.

In her latest documentary, Sousa on the Rez: Marching to the Beat of a Different Drum, O’Connell uncovers a musical tradition that has largely been forgotten in America--the Native American marching band.

In his new documentary, filmmaker Brian Truglio fused his passion for running with his strong connection to the people and culture of the Navajo Nation in Arizona. The result is Racing the Rez, a documentary that tells the story of contemporary life on the Navajo Nation through the eyes and legs of boys running high school cross-country for the fiercely competitive state championship rival teams of Tuba City and Chinle.

For the first time in its 300-year-old history, the Laguna Pueblo villages are sharing with the outside world their annual summer celebration, Grab Day. A feast day celebration in honor of their patron saints, Grab Day culminates in the Throw—when families flock to the flat, traditional pueblo style roofs of their homes to shower high spirited crowds of community members below with bread, water, toys, food and other gifts.

As a child, Walter Littlemoon, Lakota, was forcefully taken from his mother by the U.S. government and placed into a federally operated Native American boarding school on the Pine Ridge Reservation. There, Littlemoon and his peers received a cultural purging to erase their Native identity. Humiliation, beatings and abuse were a part of this process. Littlemoon’s traumatic experience at the boarding school became deeply rooted into his being, causing him great mental and emotional pain well into his adult years.

For Italian Americans and Native Americans living in and around Denver, Colorado, Christopher Columbus and the holiday honoring him are subjects of heated debate. In the new documentary, Columbus Day Legacy, Navajo filmmaker Bennie Klain presents viewers with both sides of the conflict.

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