Caleen Sisk, Chief of the Winnemem Wintu TribeChief Sisk Reviews Citation from the US Forest Service During the Winnemem Wintu Tribal “Balas Chonas Ceremony”.
This year Marisa Sisk, 17, was the only tribal member to make the transition to adulthood. She swam across the river close to 8:00 pm to conclude her transition.
For her aunt, Caleen Sisk, chief of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, it was a bittersweet occasion.
It was a joyous occasion because her daughter fulfilled the requirements passed down by the women elders of the Tribe. It was bitter because on the day after the ceremonies concluded, Chief Sisk was cited by the US Forest Service on the morning of the Fourth of July.
Now that she has been cited by the US Forest Service, Chief Sisk now faces the prospect she will be fined up to $5,000 and jailed up to six months.
The Tribe’s Balas Chonas Ceremony is a four day ceremony along the east and west side of the McCloud River in the Shasta Trinity National Forest in northern California.
The Ceremony consists of dancing, teachings by women elders and swimming across the McCloud River.
Chief Sisk was cited for two alleged violations: Operating a boat in restricted waters and violation of a special permit. She actually never operated the boat, but as the leader of the Tribe, she is responsible according to the US Forest Service.
The boat was used to transport elderly women from the Tribe who provided teachings to Marisa across the McCloud River.
READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE: Chief Sisk – $5,000 in Fines and 6 Months in Jail – Native News Network.