|One of the only newer buildings - the new school|
Five Quileute boys emerge from a phalanx of drummers. Barefoot and bare-chested, they wear black cloaks and wolf headdresses, and dance, crouch and crawl within the center of a large circle. On the outskirts, women and girls move rhythmically to a chant and steady drumbeat, several of them sporting red and black capes emblazoned with orca or elk, thunderbird or hummingbird. Every generation is represented, from drumming elders to mothers teaching toddlers to follow their footwork.
No souvenir photos of this dance are allowed, only the chance to witness the traditional steps and songs that evoke the tribe's spiritual kinship with wolves, whom K'wati the Transformer turned into the first Quileute people.
The Wolf Dance is at the core of the tribe's identity, and marks the climax of a weekly drum and healing circle, held in the fishing village of La Push, Wash., a few modest homes and buildings strung along a road that winds down to the ocean. This free event, a combination of religious ceremony, public exhibition, cultural exchange and communal catharsis, is remarkable not only for its community spirit but also for its openness to outsiders.
Read the full story here. Thoughts? Anyone else fall in love with La Push the second you set foot there? (It's La Push, baby.)