It was a little chilly in the Roundhouse at the former 110 Business Park on Wednesday, Feb. 25, but the welcome from the Quileute Tribe was warm as the tribe hosted the weekly noon meeting at the recently purchased facility. An estimated 65 chamber members and guests were treated to a delicious lunch and a glimpse of what the Quileute Tribe has planned for the future.
Vince Penn, Kathy Salazar, Bev Loudin and Naomi Jacobson welcomed the group with drumming and a song. After a few meeting formalities were taken care of by chamber president Don Grafstrom, James Jaime, the new Quileute Tribe Enterprise Director, welcomed everyone and explained the name of the new tribal venture.
“Kit.la center” comes from the old language kw`o?l`iyo’tilo, Quileute, k`it’layakw?o’kw meaning upstream prairie place, which is what the Quileute ancestors called Forks. (kate-lah-yakw-oak English – Quileute pronunciation)
Jaime thanked artist Vern Hestand for his creation of a carved wooden sign that will be displayed at the center. Jaime also acknowledged Bill and Kitty Sperry for their efforts in starting the drum group.
Naomi Jacobson, Quileute Tribe Vice Chairperson, spoke about bringing back the Quileute language. Cathy Salazar, Tribal Council Secretary, thanked the Chamber and the community of Forks for their help last year over the tribal dispute raised by the Quileute tribe’s objections when out-of-area tribes were allowed to hunt on three state Department of Fish and Wildlife game management units in Clallam County. She was happy to announce that the decision by the WDFW recently had been reversed.
About his new position and the new Kit.la Center Jaime said, “I accepted this job primarily because of the connection to the Kit.la Center and the possibilities of developing a Heritage Park. A place to showcase the tradition and culture of the region. Our goal is to build partnerships and leverage resources to develop the Kit.la Center into an enrichment facility. The tribe will engage in repatriation efforts to return artifacts to the place of origin. The Red Lizard Rock “Xa’lax.ti the house of Red Lizard” will be a centerpiece in this project.”
The question was asked if the Roundhouse still will be called the Roundhouse. Jaime joked that it was a roundhouse, in fact maybe the largest roundhouse, and it probably still will be called the Roundhouse.