Cultural tourism conference May 13-15 at Moenkopi Legacy Inn & Suites

The Institute of American Indian Arts Center for Lifelong Education is putting on a cultural tourism conference May 13-15 at the Monenkopi Legacy Inn & Suites.

The conference will focus on forming effective tourism networks, cultural sensitivity and authenticity, cultural heritage marketing, cultural tourism and photography, grant writing, managing tourism effectively and customer service in cultural tourism.

All attendees can tour the tribal lands of northern Arizona to experience the beauty, culture and hospitality of this region of Native America. Tuesday evening's program will take place at the Hopi Cultural Center on Second Mesa and feature dance performances, artists and traditional food. Attendance is open to Native and non-Native participants interested in developing stronger economies on tribal lands.

"This will be the ninth annual conference that the Center for Lifelong Education has staged and we are very pleased to be returning to Hopi tribal land in Arizona this year," Conference Coordinator Ramus Suina said. "This is an important event and a great opportunity for Native American tourism leaders from around the country to share and learn about the rich history and culture of many tribes. Every year we strengthen partnerships and collaborations to build and sustain tribal tourism."

Former Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell is the keynote speaker at the tourism conference. Campbell was the only American Indian serving in either the House of Representatives or the United States Senate during his tenure between 1987-92.

Campbell was a leader in public lands and natural resources policy, is recognized for the passage of landmark legislation to settle Indian water rights, and was at the forefront of sponsoring and fighting for legislation to protect Colorado wilderness and water rights.

In 1991, he won the fight to change the name of the Custer Battlefield Monument in Montana to the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument -- legislation that honors American Indians who died in battle. He also initiated legislation to establish the National Museum of the American Indian within the Smithsonian Institution.

Upper Village of Moenkopi Governor Sam Shingoitewa, Jr. said it is an honor to play host to the Cultural Tourism Conference.

"This is a very important gathering for Hopi and tribal members from across Arizona and the entire country and it will be an opportunity for us to share the way we have created employment and opportunity for our people," Shingoitewa said.

Program sponsors include the Arizona Office of Tourism, the New Mexico Office of Tourism, and the Hopi Tribe.

Information on the program is available at www.iaia.edu/cle/events/ctw_home/ or by calling Suina at (505) 424-2308 or James Surveyor at (928) 283-4500.

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