Festival of the Steh-Chass

Steh-Chass Youth Camp

August 5th, 6th, and 7th
Location August 5th and 6th  the Heritage Park
Location August 7th Historical Capital Theater
Ages 10-14
30 Spots Available (first-come first-serve. please register early) Online registration will open shortly.
$20 Registration Fee

Camp Overview

Indigenous cultures naturally make the connection between science, nature and art. In current times,
teachers and curriculum coordinators are engaged in adding art to the formal STEAM (science,
technology, engineering, art and math) model to encompass our relationship to the world in terms of
design, poetry and story-telling, music and visual arts. In this approach students make connections and
examine their expressions through art and nature in the real world. This responds to the need to
address current problems such as climate change with creativity, innovation and ingenuity and to learn
from local tribal history and cultures that have been evolving for centuries.
The Essential Question youth will be answering through the WHY Climate Change Project is “How do I
use science and art to inform climate change solutions, decisions and ideas in the Steh-Chass -
Deschutes Watershed - and help implement water quality and wildlife protection strategies and restore
the estuary?
Tribal Youth participating in this climate change project will:
  1. Develop a sense of place based in the Steh-Chass – the Deschutes Watershed.
    Youth will build a sense of connection to their place by learning about their watershed,
    understanding where the Deschutes River is, where it’s estuary was and how it impacts their
    daily life. Additionally, students will understand how human communities impact the watershed.
  2. Build a scientific understanding of how a watershed works.
    Youth will engage in Science, Engineering and Art Practices, and utilize Crosscutting Concepts
    (Next Generation Science Standards) to learn about the Deschutes Watershed, and build a local
    base of scientific understanding in their local watershed with a focus on climate change.
  3. Become critical thinkers, with the capacity to use scientific understanding to make personal
    and policy decisions.
    Youth will learn and practice using science understanding to inform their decision making,
    specifically by understanding and applying the Science, Art and Engineering Practices (NGSS) as
    they investigate the Deschutes Watershed and solutions to climate change impacts. Youth will become knowledgeable about water quality and develop ideas to mitigate climate change impacts to estuary restoration, salmon, Orca and forage fish health, and all ecosystem connections. They will engage the Deschutes TMDL Implementation Plan and Tribal priorities to find projects.
  4. Experience nature as teacher of science and use science as the basis for art. Nisqually and Squaxin Tribal Youth will learn about the history, culture and art of the local tribes of the Steh-Chass region. They will learn about and experience connection with nature as teacher, innovator and designer.


Festival Schedule



9:00AM- Vendors Open

9:45AM- Canoe Families Arrive at Capital Lake Dam

10:00AM- Canoe Family Procession to Stage

10:30AM- Squaxin Island Tribe Welcome and Steh-Chass History

11:00AM- 1:25 Honored Guest Speakers

1:30PM- Indigenous Sisters Resistance

2:35- Momentum X

3:30- Abriel Johnny Fashion Show

4:20 -Calina Lawrence

5:00PM- Thunderbirds Raised Her

6:00-6:45PM- Taboo

6:45-7:00PM- Closing & Thank You

Master of Ceremonies Gyasi Ross

Note* we will have some buffering in time in-between sets to allow for overruns and also last minute changes as needed.


Please contact Sarah Evans at 360.528.4308 or email ajohnson@salmondefense.org for more information. Download Steh-Chass Exhibitor Sign Up Form


Limited spots are still available for the two-day youth camp. Use the online registration form to get signed up.

Youth Camp Schedule

Will be posted once it is finalized.


Please contact Sue Patnude at olydert@gmail.com or visit deschutesestuary.org for more information.