CMA Stories

October 2019 Reading List: Indigenous Peoples Cultural Festival

The spirited staff at Hudson Park Library, located down the street from CMA at John J. Walker Park, regularly offer free family programming for neighborhood families. Check out October’s Reading List inspired by this Sunday’s Indigenous Peoples Cultural Festival from Children’s Librarian Kristy Raffensberger!

At the Mountain’s Base by Traci Sorrell, illustrated by Weshoyot Alvitre
At the mountain’s base sits a cabin under an old hickory tree. And in that cabin lives a Cherokee family — loving, weaving, cooking, and singing. The strength in their song sustains them as they wait for their loved one, a pilot, to return from war.

First Laugh: Welcome Baby! written by Rose Ann Tahe, illustrated by Jonathan Nelson
A Navaho family welcomes a new baby into the family with love and ceremony, eagerly waiting for that first special laugh. Includes brief description of birth customs in different cultures.

Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story written by Kevin Noble Maillard, illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal
A celebration of the long-cherished Seminole Nation tradition of sharing fry bread during family meals that combines powerful verses with vibrant artwork.

Kiss by Kiss / Ocêtôwina: A Counting Book for Families by Richard Van Camp
Count your kisses with baby in this delightful dual-language rhyming board book, written in English and Plains Cree.

Rabbit’s Snow Dance: A Traditional Iroquois Story written by James & Joseph Bruchac, illustrated by Jeff Newman
A spritely telling of why Rabbit’s tail is short.

We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga written by Traci Sorrell, illustrated by Frané Lessac
The Cherokee community is grateful for blessings and challenges that each season brings. This is modern Native American life as told by an enrolled citizen of the Cherokee Nation.

You Hold Me Up written by Monique Gray Smith, illustrated by Danielle Daniel
Encourages children to show love and support for each other and to consider each other’s well-being in their everyday actions. The author’s note ties in the history of residential schools for Indigenous children.

This program is supported, in part, by the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts with support of Governor Andrew Cuomo, and public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. This event is made possible thanks to the generous support of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the Redhawk Native American Arts Council. The Redhawk Native American Arts Council is a non-profit organization founded in 1994 and maintained by Native American artists and educators who reside in and around the New York City area. Each year they provide venues for over 200 different First Nations’ artists and educators to present and share their art forms with audiences around the world. They are dedicated to breaking stereotypes by presenting the traditions and societal contributions of Native Americans through song, dance, art, film, crafts, foods, and other forms of expression. Learn more at


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