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Nuwu Pahsats Speaker Series

Nuwu Pahsats Speaker Series

This event has passed. Please see our full Events & Activities calendar for a listing of all upcoming activities.

Event Information

  • Date & Time: Saturday, June 22, 2024, from 4 to 6 p.m.
  • Location: Origen Museum
  • Admission: FREE. Max of 4 tickets per registrant.
  • RSVP: Reservations are required. Limited seating available.

The Nuwu Pahsats (Southern Paiute Garden) Speaker Series provides a space for Indigenous Knowledge Givers to share their cultural lifeways and experience with the greater community. Emphasizing sustainable relationships with water, plants, and the landscape, the speaker series creates an opportunity for collaborative, community-based learning that inspires guests to think differently about their relationships with nature.

Generously funded by San Manuel Gaming and Hospitality Authority, the Speaker Series will feature a diverse list of esteemed Indigenous guest speakers. Check back soon for additional speaking engagements to be announced throughout the year.

Indigenous Foodways
Saturday, June 22, 2024, from 4 to 6 p.m.

Guest Speaker: Crystal Wahpepah

Crystal is a true Indigenous food warrior and the first Native woman to own a restaurant in Northern California. A member of the Kickapoo Nation of Oklahoma, Wahpepah grew up in and around the urban Indigenous communities of Oakland, where her Fruitvale Village restaurant, Wahpepah's Kitchen, reclaims Native foodways and connects guests to the vibrant, nourishing bounty of Native foods and intertribal cultures. By serving Kickapoo chili, Deer sticks and Three Sisters Salad among other Indigenous dishes, Crystal honors the land and waters and the sustenance they provide while creating community and helping her community heal.

Crystal is an inductee into the Native American Almanac, was a finalist for the James Beard Emerging Chef Award, and has appeared on Food Network's Chopped and Beating Bobby Flay. She serves as a U.S. State Department culinary ambassador and has catered for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and for the American Indian Film Festival. Her cookbook, A Feather and a Fork, is forthcoming from Rodale Books in October 2025.

June 22 - Reserve Free Tickets

Nuwu Pahsats speaker Crystal Wahpepah

The following events have passed.

Water Is Life: The Reason We Are Still Here
Saturday, Feb. 24, 2024, from 4 to 6 p.m.

Guest Speaker: Melanie Smokey

Melanie Smokey's mother is a descendant of Chief Kawich of the Western Shoshone. Her grandparents, Art and Alice Hooper, were instrumental in establishing the Yomba Shoshone Tribe. Melanie attended the Indian Tribal & Educational Personnel Program at Humboldt State University, then moved to the Tahoe area to get to know her Washoe side. She enjoys the West and her homeland in the Great Basin.

Nuwu Pahsats speaker Melanie Smokey

Indigenous Ingenuity: Redefining the Relationship and Moving the Path Forward
Saturday, April 13, 2024, from 4 to 6 p.m.

Guest Speaker: Michael Kotutwa Johnson

Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Regenerative Agriculture have been practiced by Indigenous People since time immemorial. However, little if any attention has been given as to why this subject matter has continued in Indigenous communities since time immemorial. Why are Indigenous people stewards of 80% of the planet's biodiversity and what mechanisms are in place to assure their survival and what can be learned from them? I will attempt to answer this question as I attempt to move Indigenous people away from victimhood towards resiliency.

Michael Kotutwa Johnson is an Indigenous Resiliency Specialist with the University of Arizona's School of Natural Resources and the Environment, Cooperative Extension, and the Indigenous Resilience Center. His research focuses on Indigenous Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and Land Use Management schemes related to food, energy, conservation, and water. He is a member of the Hopi Tribe. He has several publications on TEK as well as being the co-author on the Indigenous Peoples chapter in the recent National Climate Assessment 5 (NCA5). Most importantly, Dr. Johnson remains a practitioner of traditional Hopi dryland farming and continues to give talks on the subject.

Nuwu Pahsats speaker Michael Kotutwa Johnson

Revitalizing Traditional Farming Practices in San Juan County, Utah
Saturday, May 11, 2024, from 4 to 6 p.m.

Guest Speaker: Reagan Wytsalucy

Ms. Reagan Wytsalucy is the Agriculture, Natural Resources, and 4-H Extension Assistant Professor for San Juan County, Utah State University (USU) Extension. She is a Diné member raised in Gallup, NM. Wytsalucy completed her M.S. degree (Summer 2019) at USU focused on studying under-utilized traditional Native American food crops including horticultural practices, genetic diversity and cultural importance. Her completed research encompasses various agricultural and ethnographic approaches to understanding the significance of the Southwest peach and Navajo spinach (Cleome serrulata) to the Navajo, Hopi, and Zuni Nations. Wytsalucy currently works to provide educational programing in Animal and Plant Sciences and collaborating in state efforts to successfully propagate native food plants to encourage local sustainability within Native American communities.

Nuwu Pahsats speaker Reagan Wytsalucy

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