A lifestyle campaign connecting rural and urban
youth across the state of Alaska
PLAY THIS VILLAGE CITY SPOTIFY PLAYLIST AS YOU BROWSE THE PAGE.
IT IS FILLED WITH INDIGENOUS MUSIC BY ARTISTS FROM ACROSS THE GLOBE.
it's not a place... it's a VIBE
village city is our
virtual indigenous community.
It is a language, an identity, a home.
It's like.. there's Native Twitter and Instagram artists. Facebook bingo and raffles. Our relatives keep going viral on TikTok... Village City is all of that put together. All of us put together. Cause obviously... we are still here and we're not putting our way of life into a fragile box, a history book or a museum anymore.
IS RIGHT HERE
Village City is the new genre of media entertainment. It points to the reclamation of identity that is consistently growing amongst Indigenous communities, especially the youth.
Village City sprouts from the mass connection we have today through social media. It is a digital statement to show that we are diverse in our existence across the state. We are all Native enough and we are complex, unique, expressive and grounded in our identities.
This campaign was created in partnership with the Alaska Humanities Forum. We are distributing it through The Voice, The Vision and The Archive! This means there will be podcasts, short films, a magazine and many social media posts.
Village City FEATURES
University of Hawaii at Manoa, Freshman
"My favorite cultural activity is berry picking because it brings people together and connects me to the land when I'm on the tundra. I'm lucky enough to have grown up with fields of tundra right outside my house."
ANSEP Acceleration Academy, Sophomore
"I love beading, I started when I was about 7 with my cousin and since then, it has always been a good activity to calm me and spend my extra time in... I never really got into other cultural activities like skin sewing or dancing. Mostly because I didn't have close relatives or friends who could teach me living here in the city."
Barrow High School, Senior
"I care about basketball because it’s taught me leadership and some life skills. I usually spend my free time going to the gym or, as of right now, doing physical therapy. In college I’d want to study marine biology so I can come back to Barrow and study the ocean and other things."
Yakutat, Angoon, Juneau
Thunder Mountain High School, Senior
"NYO is an activity that I love participating in because of the community. Everyone builds each other up because in the games, these were meant for hunters who were trying to survive and provide for their community. And in that situation, you would never want to wish that they don't succeed, you help them succeed."
Chugiak High School, Sophomore
Chugiak, Bethel, Indiana
"I enjoy playing music and play the bassoon and alto saxophone. I also like basketball and wrestling. I care about education and its accessibility to everyone. My greatest motivation is my family and the ANSEP program. It's a pretty close community and a great place to meet friends."
High School, Senior
Kotlik, Fairbanks, Iowa
"I love to hunt and fish. Me and my father hunt for geese and moose every hunting season. My free time is spent on outdoor sports, mostly biking and snowboarding, but I also love to skate, swim, and play basketball."
"The best thing in my community is the history it holds. There's been a lot of people who made history here and it's a very interesting place to learn about."
At 16, Jenilee became the youngest person to harpoon a whale with her family, the Quuniq Crew. She is also an all-state basketball player and was named MVP for volleyball regionals. She grew up in Utqiagvik and is a part of the Donovan & Aiken families of the North Slope.
Favorite Color: Purple & Blue
Favorite Native Food: Quaq (Frozen whale meat, frozen blubber and seal)
Favorite Activities: Basketball, volleyball and Native Youth Olympics (NYO)
Favorite Cultural Activities: Whaling and inland hunting
"Our community here has lots of cultural opportunities, such as learning language, carving, weaving and more. That’s what I love about my community."
-Ezra E., Tlingit
This summer, Ezra E. placed 3rd in the two-foot high kick competition at the World Eskimo Indian Olympics. His goal is to join the "8-foot club" by kicking at 96 inches. He is a part of the Elisoff and Paulo families in the Southeast region and he grew up in Juneau.
Favorite Color: Blue
Favorite Native Food: Herring eggs
Favorite Activities: NYO
Favorite Cultural Activities: Making regalia, learning and speaking his Native langauge
"My favorite sport is NYO because you get to embrace different cultures, learn about your own culture, and build a family with the different communities. And my favorite event is the Alaskan High Kick because it challenges my inner strength and focus more than my physical capabilities."
Katlyn had the honor of being crowned as the 2021 Miss Teen Arctic Circle. She just left home for college and will be studying marine biology in Hawaii. She grew up between Kotzebue & Nome and is a part of the Smith & Norton families in the Northwest Arctic.
Favorite Color: Ocean and seal skin colors, blue, white, light and dark brown
Favorite Native Food: Akutaq (Inupiaq ice cream), Ugruk paniqtaq (dried seal) with seal oil
Favorite Activities: Cheerleading, swimming, NYO, spirit club, student council, youth city council, National Honors Society and
Nome youth court
Favorite Cultural Activities: Berry picking
"Debate has been really important to me since I was about 11. I feel it's a great way to meet others and learn about new things, whether it be political, environmental or totally random. Debate offers such a wide range of topics that you have to learn about and it also gives you great public speaking skills while giving you a competitive edge."
Kahayla stays active through 5 sports and 4 extra curricular activities. She is dedicated to the Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program (ANSEP) and dreams of becoming a surgeon. She grew up in Anchorage but is related to the Angaiak family of the Southwest.
Favorite Color: Green, blue, pink, black
Favorite Native Food: Blackberry, salmonberry akutaq (Yup'ik ice cream).
Favorite Activities: Biking, snowboarding, rock climbing, volleyball, skiing, debate, National Honor Society, Anchorage Youth Symphony, Anchorage Youth Court
Favorite Cultural Activities: Beading, (especially beading earrings)
COFFEE & QUAQ
with Village City
HEAR MORE FROM KAHAYLA, KATLYN, JENILEE AND EZRA E.
ON THE COFFEE & QUAQ PODCAST.
CLICKING THE POSTS BELOW WILL TAKE YOU
TO THEIR FULL INTERVIEWS.