Bemidji’s Ojibwe Language Project Receives National Geographic Recognition
Bemidji, MN – Bemidji’s Ojibwe Language Project received a formal recognition by the National Geographic Society last Thursday.
The certificate reads,
“The Mississippi River Geotourism Program Recognizes Bemidji’s Ojibwe Language Project for their valuable contribution to the Mississippi River Geotourism Program, and their support in sustaining and enhancing the unique geographic character of the region through their commitments to aesthetics, culture, environment, heritage, and the well-being of the regions’ residents”.
According to the submission to National Geographic by and anonymous nominator, more than 180 sites in the Bemidji area post bilingual signage in English and Ojibwe. This helps American Indians (mostly Ojibwe) feel more welcomed and respected in the community.
Again according to the nomination narrative, “…Bemidji, the first city on the Mississippi, is at the center of Minnesota’s three largest Indian tribes. Bemidji is an Ojibwe word short for Bemijigamaag meaning lake with cross waters referring to the Mississippi flowing through the lake. Bemidji’s Ojibwe Language Project was once a cover story in the national publication, Indian Country Today.”