FORT IRWIN, Calif. -- 2nd Squadron, 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment along with Fort Irwin celebrated the National American Indian Heritage Month at the Sandy Basin Community Center, here on Dec. 3.
The Long Wolf Cheyenne Dancers performed traditional dances in Native American regalia, or traditional clothing. The family of seven from Newberry Springs, California also spoke on the importance of family values and traditions that are passed down from generation to generation.
This event highlights Native American and Native Alaskan culture, traditions, diversity, and contributions to our country. The National American Indian Heritage Month observance brings awareness to the past and present struggles of Native Americans.
"The Army is full of people from different cultures, races, creeds and gender," said Staff Sgt. Joshua White of 2/11 ACR who also coordinated the event. It is important that we take the time out to observe each of these individually and collectively, White added.
"I enjoyed the dancers and what they stand for as a traditional Native American family," said Sgt. Ja-Nal Pease, whom is of Crow Heritage from Montana, with Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, Regimental Sustainment Squadron, 11th ACR.
"Todays observance shed a little light into the military community about the Native American culture and the ties we have specifically with the Army," said Pease.
The National American Indian Heritage observance showcased several different artifacts such as arrowheads, spears, and stone tools.
Soldiers, family members, and other guests were invited to try native foods at the end of the observance. Samplings of rabbit stew, tilapia, potato melody, corn bread and other treats filled the room with a warm aroma.
"I learned so much about the Native American culture and how much pride and tradition they have passed on from generations before our time," said Pfc. Amanda Rivera HHT 2/11.
Every year the 11th ACR and Fort Irwin celebrate Native American Indian Heritage Month. Fort Irwin has many archaeological and historic sites, which confirm Native American people lived, hunted, gathered plants for food and worked stone into tools here.