Baker Lake rapper drops debut album

Baker Lake rapper Shauna Seeteenak released her first full-length album in August through Nunavut-based label Hitmakerz.

Seeteenak told Kivalliq News that the record was a musical diary of the things she had experienced growing up in Nunavut.

“The album means a lot to me because when I was younger it was hard for me to express how I felt inside. I was never taught to express myself healthily. It just felt like a therapy session every time I sing a song,” she said.

Seeteenak has been a mainstay within Nunavut’s hip-hop scene ever since she first performed at Iqaluit’s Alianait Festival in 2010.

Eight Rankin Inlet teens redefine fashion in two-week workshop

Eight Rankin Inlet students in need were due to receive new parkas for the upcoming school year thanks, to the stylish work of young seamstresses enrolled in a sewing program last summer.

The Ilitaqsiniq Nunavut Literacy Council launched the Ikajurniq youth corps program earlier in the year, which encouraged youth to give back to the community. To complete the program, each participant had to volunteer 120 hours.

During this two-week program, participants were taught how to sew a parka from scratch in the first week. The garments sewn during this period were made for students without parkas.

Participants then spent a second week refining their skills by sewing a customized jacket for themselves.

“Everyone really enjoyed it. Maybe half the participants had never used a sewing machine before. You could tell in the end they are going to continue sewing,” said Ilitaqsiniq program manager Kelly Clark-Lindell.

Hunters make history

A group of Baker Lake hunters made history by harvesting the community’s first-ever bowhead whale.

According to Philip Putumiraqtuq, the hunt’s captain, the hunters had been stuck camping out on the land near Naujaat for nearly three weeks due to bad weather when they started to think about giving up and heading home. The conditions were so bad that they had hardly been able to get out on the water.

“It was getting pretty frustrating with weather, not being able to get out. A lot of the crew was getting home-sick,” Putumiraqtuq said.

Then on the morning of Aug. 15, the waters calmed down and the crew successfully harpooned the whale at 9 p.m.

Homegrown teacher returns to Rankin Inlet to begin career

Kayla Bruce has dreamed of becoming a teacher in her hometown ever since finishing high school.

After completing eight years of post-secondary studies in the south, Bruce returned to Rankin Inlet to do just that, being hired as the new Grade 5-6 teacher at Simon Alaittuq School.

“Going into it back in 2015, that was my plan, to come back home,” said Bruce. “I feel ready and I’m happy to be here.” Bruce completed her bachelor of education degree at the University of Winnipeg. Before that, the 28-year- old spent two years pursuing Inuit Studies at Ottawa’s Nunavut Sivuniksavut.

Freaks reclaim Calm Air Cup title

Rankin Inlet’s Freaks defeated their Coral Harbour rivals, the Salliq Invaders, in a rainy championship game during the Calm Air tournament in August.

“It’s just how we wanted it. We couldn’t have asked for any better finish,” said team captain Lee Kreelak.

With winds clocking in upward of 70 kilomentres per hour and rain blowing sideways, it was a soggy end to an otherwise fair-weather tournament.

The Freaks’ Chad Graham described the wet and windy conditions as a “Calm Air classic.”

The co-ed tournament, which is a qualifying event for national softball championships, featured five teams from Rankin, one from Baker Lake and two from Coral Harbour.

Leadership forum unites Inuit women

Women from across Nunavut who want to build a better future for themselves and the territory hailed the Arnait Tulliningit Inuit women’s leadership forum as a success.

The name Arnait Tulliningit refers to a women’s trail in a traditional camp, which mirrors the journey of women attending the forum.

The Arnait Tulliningit women’s leadership forum took place simultaneously in Rankin Inlet and Iqaluit from Aug. 23 to 26.

The program was originally supposed to be hosted in Rankin Inlet but bad weather meant the course ended up being divided between the Kivalliq and Iqaluit.

Rankin Inlet finishes in top four at national Indigenous hockey tournament

Rankin Inlet finished in the top four at the Fred Sasakamoose “Chief Thunderstick” National Hockey Championship, which wrapped up in Saskatoon on Aug. 15.

The result was an improvement on Rankin’s top eight finish in their first appearance at the national Indigenous men’s tour- nament last year. This year they almost made it to the finals but they dropped a hard-fought 2-1 battle to Eagle Lake First Nation in the semis.

“We’re proud to be from Rankin and that’s who we were playing for and I hope we made Nunavut proud. We weren’t out there playing for ourselves we were playing for so much more,” team captain Roger Tagoona said in an interview.

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