Traditional Foods Program assistant Mackenzie Grinnell and program intern Daniel Csizmadia spread hay over a newly planted field in open grassland behind the Dungeness River Audubon Center in the fall of 2019. The Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe’s Traditional Foods Program is receiving this year’s annual North Olympic Land Trust Award. Photo by Tiffany Royal

Traditional Foods Program assistant Mackenzie Grinnell and program intern Daniel Csizmadia spread hay over a newly planted field in open grassland behind the Dungeness River Audubon Center in the fall of 2019. The Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe’s Traditional Foods Program is receiving this year’s annual North Olympic Land Trust Award. Photo by Tiffany Royal

NOLT selects Jamestown tribe’s traditional foods, culture program for annual award

North Olympic Land Trust has awarded the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe Traditional Foods & Culture Program its 23rd-annual nəxʷsƛ̕əy̕əkʷáʔnəŋ of the Year Award, the nonprofit organization announced earlier this month.

This year, the Land Trust is using “nəxʷsƛ̕əy̕əkʷáʔnəŋ” — gatherer of food in the Klallam language — instead of “farmer” to reflect the Traditional Foods & Cultural Program’s innovative and culturally based project that promotes traditional, sustainable, and ecologically sound cultivation, gathering and food practices, Land Trust officials said.

The nəxʷsƛ̕əy̕əkʷáʔnəŋ of the Year Award will be presented in a virtual program, “Rooted in Community: Celebrating our Local Bounty,” premiering Thursday, Sept. 30 at 6:30 p.m. on the Land Trust’s YouTube channel at tinyurl.com/NOLTyoutube.

“For millennia, people on the North Olympic Peninsula have cultivated this landscape through management practices that help maintain healthy ecosystems while promoting specific plants for food with cultural and medicinal value,” Tom Sanford, executive director of North Olympic Land Trust, said.

”The Land Trust is excited to recognize the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe for this fantastic Traditional Food & Culture Program that revives these practices and traditions.

“From the establishment of a community garden to prairie restoration, the promotion of healthy eating, a focus on sustainable management, and the propagation and harvesting of native plants, this program positively and significantly impacts the way our community connects with the land.”

The Traditional Foods & Culture Program supports tribal practices that build resiliency and connections to community, family, by educating about and providing traditional foods to promote health, food sovereignty and sustainability, practicing seasonal cultural and traditional practices that support health and wellness, and offering traditional and contemporary physical activities that promote well-being — including gathering traditional plant materials for food and cultural uses, and maintaining community gardens and prairies.

“The Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe and our community are very excited that our Traditional Foods Program is being honored with North Olympic Land Trust’s nəxʷsƛ̕əy̕əkʷáʔnəŋ of the Year Award,” W. Ron Allen, Jamestown S’Klallam Tribal chair and CEO, said.

“Cultural Programs Supervisor and Tribal citizen Lisa Barrell and her team have been working diligently to restore prairies and our traditional practices to promote an understanding of the healthy and medicinal value of traditional foods. They truly have earned this local recognition and we hold our hands up in appreciation of this honor.”

North Olympic Land Trust is “dedicated to the conservation of open spaces, local food, local resources, healthy watersheds, and recreational opportunities.” The organization’s long-term goal is to conserve lands that sustain the social, ecological and economic vitality of Clallam County.

Since its founding in 1990, the Land Trust has conserved more than 3,690 acres across the North Olympic Peninsula for farms, fish, and forests.

For more information, visit northolympiclandtrust.org.

Farmer of the Year winners

1999 — Nash Huber and Curtis Beus

2000 — Steve Johnson

2001 — Gary Smith

2002 — Toni Anderson

2003 — Harry Lydiard

2004 — Neil Conklin

2005 — Bob Caldwell

2006 — John Willits

2007 — Jeff, Debbie, Sarah and Kayla Brown

2008 — Arturo Flores (Graysmarsh Farm)

2009 — Joe Holtrop

2010 — John and Carmen Jarvis (Finn Hall Farm)

2011 — Bob Caldwell

2012 — Christie and Kelly Johnston (Johnston Farms)

2013 — Gene Adolphson

2014 — Tom and Holly Clark (Clark Farms)

2015 — All landowners who have helped conserve land for farming

2016 — Doug Hendrickson and Lee Norton (Salt Creek Farm)

2017 — WSU Extension/director Clea Rome

2018 — Scott Chichester (Chi’s Farm)

2019 — Sarah and Ryan McCarthey (Dungeness Valley Creamery)

2020 — Farms with Community Supported Agriculture programs (Bent Gate Farms, Chi’s Farm, Griffith Farm CSA, River Run Farm, Salt Creek Farm, SisterLand Farms, Wild Edge Farm, Wild Forks Farm)

2021 — Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe Traditional Foods & Culture Program nəxʷsƛ̕əy̕əkʷáʔnəŋ of the Year

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