TAHOLAH, WA (8/2/13)-- The Paddle to Quinault ceremony got underway with great style Thursday as dozens of traditional tribal cedar canoes from points near and far came ashore at Point Grenville near Taholah, a spectacle witnessed by thousands of Indian and non-Indian cheering spectators.
One by one the giant canoes were welcomed ashore by Quinault Nation leaders and Quinault dancers and singers as they rode the Pacific waves in, some completing a journey of hundreds of miles. The pullers (paddlers) then hefted their heavy canoes through the crowd to the safety and comfort of dry land, a count of 69 canoes in all.
Following several hours of the traditional welcoming and landings, it was time for the host tribe to feed the canoe families and thousands of both Indian and non-Indian guests, then to commence potlatch activities which will continue until Tuesday, August 6. The welcome is extended to all, and traditional food, dance, music, storytelling and gifting are all provided with open arms and friendly smiles. The 2013 Canoe Journey Celebration is underway!