Crossing Bok Chitto receives 2008 American Indian Youth Literature Award

This year’s Annual American Library Association Convention in Anaheim (June 26 to July 2) was very special for Cinco Puntos Press--The American Indian Library Association (AILA) awarded Crossing Bok Chitto, written by Tim Tingle and illustrated by Jeanne Rorex Bridges, the 2008 American Indian Literature Award for a Picture Book. Jeanne, because of illness in the family, could not attend and we missed her. It would have been nice to see a woman up there among all the other award winners--Chief Medicine Crow for his book Counting Coup: Becoming a Crow Chief on the Reservation and Beyond (Middle School Winner); Sherman Alexie for his book The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian (YA Winner); and our own Tim Tingle. To the right is a picture of Jeanne, who we missed, and below is a collection of images from the event, plus a short video of the round dance (accompanied by the Red Earth Singers) that concluded the celebration. I have more video of three young people passionately performing traditional dances—Ashkii-Chee Kadenehii (Dinah) doing the Grass Dance, Nanabah Kadenehii (Dineh) doing the Jingle Dance,and Ba’ac Garcia (Tohono O’odaham) doing the Fancy Bustle Dance. All three were very exciting, but I didn’t include them here without permission. If a reader knows how to contact the organizers to get contact information and approval, then I will include those at a later date. The Round Dance, because it was such a communal happening, I thought it was okay to include. At the end of the video you’ll see Tim Tingle accompanying Susan Hanks to the dance, and at the very end is Lee Merrill Byrd waving at me, the videographer, to join hands. I turn off the video, happy to join hands and dance. / Bobby Byrd

The photographs below have Tim with Janice Rice (Ho Chunk), the current president of AILA and Naomi Caldwell (Ramapough Lenape), the chair of the AILA Award Committee. And below that is the video of the Round Dance. You can see other photos of the event at the AILA flikr site.


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