On our second day in Oregon, Reyn picked us up around noon and we headed out to tour the Grand Ronde Reservation.
First stop was the tribal cemetery. This was the land they were left when the tribal status was taken away.
Nearby is the memorial to veterans:
Money for the memorial was raised through fund-raising efforts like spaghetti dinners and so on. It took 6 years to raise the amount needed. Members of the tribe posed for the sculpture.
Each column in the memorial is dedicated to one branch of the military.
Next stop was the Tribal Governance Center. Reyn's wife had driven their 1955 Chevy to work, and of course we stopped to check it out. Our grandson Jared, who recently moved to Portland, was with us for this day's tour, and that's him in the photo below.
Men and engines--what is it that makes the attraction so strong?
This car is as pretty under the hood as it it on the outside! The interior was immaculate too.
Inside the governance center's Tribal Council's chamber, Reyn showed us copies of the various treaties that were signed with the tribes that make up the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde.
Inside the Governance Center:
Three flags: The Grande Ronde flag, the Oregon flag, and the US flag, fly over the governance center.
Not far away is the Wellness Center,
which offers health and dental services as well as mental health services. A new building next to this one will combine human resources, training, and job services in one location. Also on the reservation is the housing office and the Education Center. At the time of our visit, children were attending summer programs that were offered for all children in grades pre-K through 12.
We also toured the housing available to tribal members. Options included low-income and senior housing as well as typical middle-class homes. Everywhere we noted how neat and well-maintained the homes, buildings and grounds were. I did not take any photos as these were private homes and I did not want to intrude on that privacy.
I was curious about the community gardens after someone mentioned them to me, so Reyn took us by.
These are new this year and include a greenhouse, chickens and raised bed vegetable plots.
Work is all-volunteer. New berry vines and bushes were in the ground, and the strawberries were already ripening. We ate several--incredibly sweet and full of flavor, but then Oregon is noted for its fine strawberries. I hope no one misses the ones we snacked on! Too delicious for words.
Later we visited the new powwow grounds and arbor:
More about that, and our trip through the tribe's timberlands, in my next post!
Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.