It should be considered common knowledge that going to someplace you haven’t visited yet nothing compares to seeing some trustworthy regional recommendations. Alaska is recognized as a destination where the question of sustainable travel and tourism is crucial. Threads discussing Alaska are something we pay attention to. Due to its reputation as being a world-class location, travelers are enthusiastic about Alaskan vacations.
It’s no surprise that getting hometown headlines is more valuable than detailed magazine descriptions. Based upon popular opinion nearly everyone will want to keep reading mainly because it deals with subject matter travelers are usually focused on. By my calculations there are not enough reports that cover complete content. Most people looking into the latest resources will be interested in this point of view focusing on ideas to bear in mind for people evaluating an Alaskan escape.
Oomingmak | Fish Alaska Magazine
was written by Russell Porsley , 2019-12-14 01:18:45
be sure to visit their website, source link is at the end of the article
Some aspects of Alaska seem to never change, their presence an unwavering constant. Alaska native culture is steeped in steadfast tradition. The shedding of musk ox qiviut each spring is just as constant. This soft underwool is a freeze-fighting, snuggly, sought-after fiber that is equally as Alaskan as salmon fishing. With this great renewable resource at hand, the Oomingmak Musk Ox Producers’ Co-Operative began with a group of Alaska native women from the village of Mekoryuk on Nunivak Island exactly 50 years ago.
Oomingmak creates luxurious but practical, hand-knit, heirloom hats, Nachaqs, scarves, and stoles. Their name was inspired by the Inuit word for muskox, umiŋmak, which means “the animal with skin like a beard.” The purpose behind the co-op was an outlet for the harvesting of qiviut and for remote villagers to earn money for cost of living expenses like heat.
We’re grateful that Oomingmak has worked with us since 2007 as longtime advertisers in our magazines and websites. Their people, especially Arthur and Marie, are truly wonderful to know. This fall they bestowed on me the highest honor imaginable. I received a custom-made gift from the co-operative, hand sewn by knitter Elaine Moses. They deviated from their custom village patterns that define Oomingmak to find a special fish scale pattern that Elaine sewed into a cloche made of qiviut just for me. It is an amazing gift that I will cherish the rest of my days, then pass on to my daughter.
I had the chance to learn more about Elaine, the sewer of this masterpiece. Elaine is from Newtok, a small village on the Ningliq River near Bethel. Elaine has lived in Anchorage since 1990, or as she puts it “has been away from home” since that year. She’s been sewing for the co-op since the 80s when co-op representatives came to her village to audition sewers to join. She used to be a constant hobby knitter. “As soon as I put it down, I would pick it up five minutes later,” she said. This job is well suited for Elaine who now works in the downtown Anchorage shop as a full-time sewer; it quenches her knitting thirst.
Over the years I’ve purchased several of Oomingmak’s hand knits because I love the natural beauty and comfort of the qiviut. I can’t wear wool next to my skin, but qiviut does not scratch. I’ve bought hats and smokerings for myself, my daughter, and as gifts for a couple best girlfriends. It’s as chic in Alaska fashion as XTRATUF boots.
Traditional patterns are drawn from aspects of village life and Eskimo culture. Sewers come from villages all around the state and currently number over 200 members. The way it works is members audition for the job, pay annual membership dues, then receive the qiviut and copyrighted patterns. They submit pieces at their pace and receive payment the next day.
This co-operative member-owned business has been going strong for 50 years. To celebrate they created a unique anniversary pattern and had a special yarn spun for anniversary Nachaqs (smokerings) that is the highest-quality yarn they’ve seen. The Mekoryuk 50th Anniversary Pattern depicts a 1,200-year-old carved ivory harpoon head. They have “50” purled into the solid panel and are slightly larger than their regular Nachaqs. Anniversary patterns are knitted by the most experienced members.
Tradition has been the foundation of Oomingmak all these years, and the next generation of First Alaskans are showing interest in perpetuating native Alaska customs while at the same time they are able to bring in a modern twist. They are encouraged to use nontraditional materials and colors combined with the qiviut to make items like qiviut bracelets, earrings and holiday ornaments. These one-of-a-kind items are available at the shop on the corner of 6th and H Street in downtown Anchorage in addition to their many beautiful traditional items—which can also be ordered online at qiviut.com.
If you see me on the river in my very special fish scale cloche made of qiviut, you’ll see a new tradition has begun. That is going to be one lucky fishing hat.
Melissa Norris is Publisher of Fish Alaska and Hunt Alaska magazines.
This blog originally appeared as the Alaska Traveler column in the December 2019 issue of Fish Alaska.
An emerging trend is the more interesting writing are not sweeping scholastic research but anecdotal experiences showing people and small communities. However, actually often it is the biggest organizations offering the fresh and truthful content. Admittedly there is also a place for tourism and hospitality statistics reviews or policy assessment. Content about visiting Alaska such as Oomingmak | Fish Alaska Magazine help us to study the far reaching potential of sustainable travel.
As reported by a variety of surveys by and large visitors prefer sustainable tourism would like to be considered as responsible travelers. Alaska is a region where sustainable travel is essential.
High on the list of recommended places to see for every body coming to Alaska is
Kenai Fjords National Park. Kenai Fjords is usually accessed from Seward. Within the amazingly green waters of the Fjords is an plentiful array of tidewater and piedmont glaciers. Sea wildlife consists of otters, sea lions, harbor seals, humpback and orca whales, porpoises, puffins and kittiwakes. Kenai Fjords National Park is more conveniently accessed through tour boats from Seward or by driving to Exit Glacier, just outside of Seward. Wildlife and glacier exhibits can be found at the Small Boat Harbor visitor center and the Alaska Sealife Center. Many visitors arrive in Seward via cruise ship after an Inside Passage tour. For an excellent day trip, Seward and Kenai Fjords National Park can be reached by car or by way of the Alaska Railroad from Anchorage. Another good option is the Park Connection Motorcoach, with daily summer time service and morning or afternoon departures from Anchorage. A great area to stay before or after an Alaska cruise, or for several nights during a land trip, Seward offers a number of distinctive accommodations possibilities. A cruise into the Kenai Fjords National Park is really a must on your visit to Alaska. Kenai Fjords cruises out of Seward vary from 5, 6, 8 or ten hours in length and cover numerous areas of the Park, including Resurrection Bay, Fox Island, Holgate Arm and the Northwestern Fjord. Other top sight-seeing opportunities include a relaxed hike to the face of Exit Glacier and a trip to the Alaska SeaLife Center. Sea kayaking and sportfishing out of Seward are excellent ways to achieve more up-close and personal experience with the Kenai Fjords area. Seward also has an excellent selection of unique gift shops and cafes, in addition to beachcombing, hiking, and horseback riding.