By Marvin Louie
Osoyoos Indian Band
Hello, my name is Marvin Louie (A.K.A. Birdman) and I am a proud member of the Osoyoos Indian Band (OIB), of which I am currently a youth coordinator.
I was born in Penticton but spent (and was raised) a majority of my time in the Seattle area going to school and playing high school and college-level sports. I moved back to the Okanagan area in 2002.
I was recently appointed the “roving reporter” for the Osoyoos Indian Band and the Oliver Chronicle has graciously offered to put an article (I will be writing a monthly piece) in their beloved paper to inform the Town of Oliver (and possibly boundaries beyond) what the OIB has been up to the last month and also about upcoming events (apparently what happens on the Rez doesn’t stay on the Rez anymore, or does it?).
I hope you enjoy today’s article as well as future ones.
Let’s start with the title, shall we? After all, I will be transferring information (communication) from the people on the Rez to the inquiring minds of the people in the town of Oliver. Smoke signals are one of the oldest forms of long distance communication (utilized by First Nations people, Chinese soldiers, Greek mythology, etc.) used to transmit news, signal danger, or gather people to a common area. Smoke signals were the smartphones of yesteryear and back then you could use your communication device as a dual threat, obviously for communication but also for roasting marshmallows (or Buffalo if preferred). It was also a pretty entertaining movie in 1998; fry bread sales have never been the same.
As the days get progressively longer and the weather gets warmer (at least that’s the rumour; darn that groundhog), the Open Door Group and the Osoyoos Indian Band are working together again and have put together a plan for two spring hiring fairs. The first hiring fair will be in Osoyoos at the Watermark Beach Resort (15 Park Place) on Thursday, March 22, while the second hiring fair will be in Oliver located at Sen’Pok’Chin Elementary School (1156 Sen Pok Chin Blvd). Both fairs will be from 2–5 p.m. The fairs are a great opportunity for both employers and potential employees, connecting both groups to each other, as well as providing important networking opportunities for job seekers. For further information you may contact Kendi Clearwater at firstname.lastname@example.org, or if you’re really inspired by this article you can try sending a smoke signal (I mean really, how hard can it be to rub two sticks together?).
On March 17 the OIB will be hosting a grand opening of the new Tim Hortons (and gas station) in Senkulmen Business Park north of Oliver. More information will appear in the Chronicle next week.
The OIB is a very progressive band when it comes to starting new business ventures and is also a great way to keep its partnership with the Town of Oliver on the upswing. Chief Clarence Louie stated, “The Osoyoos Indian Band is very proud on the opening of the first Tim Hortons and Gulf gas bar on the Rez; this new business is a very welcome addition to the business park.”
Until next month, as one great Indian chief once said, “Don’t worry about the horse being blind, just load the wagon.”